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Family Guy Could Learn a Thing or Two

On Sunday, Fox cartoon show Family Guy imagined a universe in which everything is depicted as a Post political cartoon:

I couldn’t understand it because the characters weren’t labeled. Family Guy’s writers might examine my latest cartoon for guidance:

By Tom Toles  | September 29, 2009; 3:10 PM ET
Categories:  Toles  | Tags:  Tom Toles  
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Posted by: edtroyhampton | September 29, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse


You really need some's time for pie,right?!?

Posted by: andio76 | September 30, 2009 1:57 AM | Report abuse

--I couldn’t understand it--

That's why you are just drawing cartoons for the Post !!!

Posted by: SideShowBob1 | September 30, 2009 5:13 AM | Report abuse

"Pie"! I'm cracking up!

yes, I get it.

Posted by: hitpoints | September 30, 2009 6:20 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: cschotta1 | September 30, 2009 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Well, there happen to be times when we just don't get YOUR cartoons...... or they're just not funny. So, turnabout is probably fair play and to be expected.....

Posted by: LNER4472 | September 30, 2009 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Weird. Usually they rip off the Simpsons.

Posted by: mack1 | September 30, 2009 8:21 AM | Report abuse

Family Dude... the most resonantly redolent tripey 'cartoon' there ever was... until the Clevelands... hate to agree with Cartman about anything but this time i must

fortunately all of Family Geezer's 'humor' is so hep (as grandma used to say), so 'with-it', it will die a quiet death in syndication

Posted by: lambcannon | September 30, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

I think Toles does get it and is playing dumb as part of the gag - "I can't understand a comic/cartoon unless it's labeled clearly as to what the drawings represent" - which is what Family Guy is mocking the WaPo for.

But if so, Toles' come-back fails. "I can't understand it because the characters aren't labeled"?? Brian IS labeled, and Stewie is holding a labeled object!

Posted by: hitpoints | September 30, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

You're funnier, Mr. Toles.

Posted by: dbitt | September 30, 2009 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Judging by the style, I think they're mocking the more classic Herblock style rather than yours Tom. Come on now, I thought it was funny, I chuckled. A little... :P

Posted by: kblowry | September 30, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Cool Hwhip with my pie please.

I guess the difference in intellect is inversely proportional to the paycheck.

Stay Small buddy.

Posted by: vailpete | September 30, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Family Guy is THE BEST show on TV those who don't like it are like the Washington Post's ad slogan "... if you don't get it... you don't get it" Mr. Toles when I first saw this segment in the recent Family guy episode - I took it as a tip of the hat to you at the WAPO.

Posted by: rikkirat | September 30, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Family Guy teaches many things to many people; for example, Gene Hackman is gay and Disney hates jews. Plus, they weren't specifically referring to the Post.

Posted by: CubsFan | September 30, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

As Harry Reid was heard saying to an insurance industry lobbyist the other day:
"Where's my money, Brina? Well, where is it?..."

Posted by: InRealAmerica | September 30, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

lambcannon - It will die a "lonely death in syndication"?....Well, not sure if you checked lately - the show is in it's tenth year of new episodes and is on about 8 channels in syndication....

If that's a "lonely death", I must not understand the meaning of those words...

Kind of like you not understanding the show.

Posted by: vze2r3k5 | September 30, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I think it was a tribute, MacFarlane certainly didn't portray political cartooning negatively.

Posted by: HaymarketObserver | September 30, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Exactly, it was meant to be taken as a lighthearted jest/tribute. Lighten up folks. Tom wouldn't have posted it if it were meant to offend (or if he were offended).

By the way, Tom, props to a fellow Buffalonian!

Posted by: ryanbin72 | September 30, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: lambcannon

Family Dude... the most resonantly redolent tripey 'cartoon' there ever was... until the Clevelands... hate to agree with Cartman about anything but this time i must

fortunately all of Family Geezer's 'humor' is so hep (as grandma used to say), so 'with-it', it will die a quiet death in syndication

Somebody was paying attention during vocabulary lessons. Jeez, don't take yourself so seriously. Family Guy makes plenty of us laugh. Perhaps if you spent less time drumming up big words and more time relaxing, you *might* get it. Of course, a bonghit at about 8:55 pm est on Sunday evenings helps as well....

Posted by: lingering_lead | September 30, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Now that Seth McFarlen is basically making a 90 min cartoon a week on Fox Sunday Night, that last week's 90 minutes was some weird and wild stuff. Yo got to give a little respect for the diversity of artistic styles that they used.

Posted by: alex35332 | September 30, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

That is the only Family Guy clip that's ever made me usually operates on a level better suited to bored 15-year-olds which I imagine is the bulk of its audience.

Posted by: rokmontez | September 30, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse


Well lets see... you were trying to say that it is garbabe. Am I right about that? Well it has been syndicated and you know what it has been on the Cartoon Network and TBS. So I am not sure what you are taking about there. Anyways it is not for everyone and I understand, but get your facts straight.

Posted by: no_recess | September 30, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I honestly didn't get the humor in the Family Guy episode...

But it made me wonder what Seth's fascination with our area is... American Dad is set in Langley, and now this fascination with WaPo.

But the cartoons he was depicting.. McCain-Feingold legislation on a platter... it just seemed too dated for anyone to understand the relevance.
And then I felt like there was something else off-screen that I needed to see to make it make sense...

Ah well... I guess I just don't get the joke, or that there is a joke... or that Toles is making a joke.


Posted by: trambusto | September 30, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Hi all. Actually, this bit is a callback to the start of the show, when Stewie introduces the strange device he's using to transport them through alternate universes. He holds it up mockingly and asks Brian if he knows what it is. Brian then pretentiously feigns knowledge by launching into "sure, I know what it is, but I just want to hear what you think it is," etc. Stewie calls him out at that point. So this segment just expands on Brian's annoying tendency to make believe he knows what's going on when things are just a bit too far over his head intellectually.

So I'm saying it's a complement to you. OK, I'm done.

Posted by: dude11 | September 30, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I love animation, with South Park and The Simpsons as my favorites. Of course, I have watched all of the Family Guy episodes, but, frankly, I'm tired of the same old anti-female jokes on that show. It's getting old, Seth.

Posted by: spro | September 30, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Political humor is geeky, not funny. Family Guy is funny.

Posted by: nmoses | September 30, 2009 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Good political humor is not supposed to be funny, it's supposed to be biting and acerbic.

Family Guy is crude and infantile, written for the lowest possible common denominator.

Posted by: kilby | October 1, 2009 2:01 AM | Report abuse

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