Pharyngula

Talking dog is an atheist!

Last night’s Family Guy featured an unsurprising revelation about a character.

(via Sunny Skeptic)


The full episode is on Hulu.

Comments

  1. #1 Vic
    March 30, 2009

    And it interfered with his ability to buy booze! The problems atheists have to live with …

  2. #2 Jello
    March 30, 2009

    This isn’t even a revelation as Brian being an atheist has been discussed on the show before. This was just the first time he made a public announcement of it.

  3. #3 Fred Mounts
    March 30, 2009

    Was this also the episode with The God Delusion, or is this a new one?

    I saw a movie called The Mutant Chronicles as part of a sci-fi marathon this weekend. It was OK, but for most of the running time I was pretty pissed off, because it took place in the 28th century and people were still going on about the importance of faith. I was relieved at the end – the movie redeemed itself by having a nonbeliever be the savior of the planet.

  4. #4 Zeno
    March 30, 2009

    Lois Griffin definitely has some problems. First she got all knotted up over hosting a gay marriage (it just didn’t seem right to her) and now she gets upset because the family dog is an atheist (“An atheist is about the worst thing you can be”). If Lois needs something to worry about, she ought to keep a closer eye on Stewie, her psychopathic, sociopathic, gender-confused toddler (with not-so-latent fascist tendencies).

  5. #5 Fred Mounts
    March 30, 2009

    Oh, and not that anyone asked or cared, but my favorite line was when someone asked the nonbeliever what he believes in.

    “I’m not paid to believe. I’m paid to fuck shit up.”

    Good stuff.

  6. #6 Braiden
    March 30, 2009

    This video probably won’t stay up long but it was nice to see our kind accurately depicted in a show for once.

    e.g., it’s okay to bash organized religion but we believe in god in this house … all too common thought process in many people.

  7. #7 ERV
    March 30, 2009

    Whil Wheaton.

  8. #8 tripwire
    March 30, 2009

    Actually, Brian being an atheist is a bit of old news. In S07E01, Brian comes out of the closet, and hooks up with an atheist chick.

  9. #9 bunnycatch3r
    March 30, 2009

    This is totally the reaction I got from friends and family. And I thought it was just a rural Nebraska sort of thing.

  10. #10 Milo Johnson
    March 30, 2009

    Wait, what? Why are you saying it that way?

  11. #11 MrBaconFace
    March 30, 2009

    bunnycatch3r:

    It’s also an Oklahoma City thing, though I suppose the two aren’t that different.

    I especially liked the “Logic for First Graders” at the book burning.

  12. #12 cthellis
    March 30, 2009

    Whil Wheaton?

  13. #13 Sarah
    March 30, 2009

    There was another episode that was new this season (I think) which featured Brian meeting a girl in a bookstore after they both reached for the last copy of The God Delusion. They each crack a few jokes about god not existing. :P

  14. #14 Tony P
    March 30, 2009

    The issue is, we’re now almost 20% of the population in the northeast. That’s right, godless liberals.

    You should the discussion I’m having with a Catholic Priest right now. Whoa, Mr. Straw Man himself.

    That said, I loved the book burning at the end.

  15. #15 BG
    March 30, 2009

    “I feel the warm, healing, liquid presence of god’s genuine cold filtered grace.” Thats funny.

  16. #16 Tony P
    March 30, 2009

    Forgot to mention, the whole episode is up on hulu.com now.

    See http://www.hulu.com/watch/64995/family-guy-not-all-dogs-go-to-heaven

  17. #17 Michelle R
    March 30, 2009

    Now if only Family Guy was funny.

  18. #18 John C. Welch
    March 30, 2009

    There is something INSANELY funny about Patrick Stewart saying the phrase: “Look! I’ve got girl-boobs!”

  19. #19 One Eyed Jack
    March 30, 2009

    Fred Mounts #3

    “I saw a movie called The Mutant Chronicles as part of a sci-fi marathon this weekend. It was OK, but for most of the running time I was pretty pissed off, because it took place in the 28th century and people were still going on about the importance of faith. I was relieved at the end – the movie redeemed itself by having a nonbeliever be the savior of the planet.”

    This really didn’t surprise you, did it? So long as the human race exits, there will be religion.

  20. #20 OctoberMermaid
    March 30, 2009

    The American Family Association is not happy with Family Guy…

    But because of a different episode.

    http://www.afa.net/familyguy2.htm

    They warned me of this “Action Alert(!!!)” in an email entitled, hilariously, “Pepsi and Jesus.”

    They’re boycotting Pepsi, apparently. I kind of feel like getting a pepsi now…

  21. #21 Tom
    March 30, 2009

    Professor Meyers,

    Totally off topic, but you might also like this:

    http://xkcd.com/520/

  22. #22 Rick R
    March 30, 2009

    I love Pepsi. Especially Diet Pepsi. I’m going to spend the rest of the day enjoying the fact that the AFA is pissed that I buy Pepsi products.

    Oh, and Keifer Sutherland.

  23. #23 Slugsie
    March 30, 2009

    I do love Family Guy. :)

    http://www.quietatheist.com

  24. #24 Girl Technologist
    March 30, 2009

    OMG. Atheism + Star Trek TNG in one Family Guy episode? I think this may be my favorite episode of all time.

  25. #25 Gustaf
    March 30, 2009

    I was just watching ST:TNG when this popped up in my RSS feed.

    This must be a sign. :P

  26. #26 AnthonyK
    March 30, 2009

    Thanks for posting that, profound and hilarious. I think the Family Guy team will be proud to have this episode posted here!

  27. #27 FlameDuck
    March 30, 2009

    Flash Gordon is God? I knew it! Also, drinking a lot of Pepsi from now on.

    It was OK, but for most of the running time I was pretty pissed off, because it took place in the 28th century and people were still going on about the importance of faith.

    The Mutant Chronicles is a shameless ripoff of Warhammer 40K. The whole point is that faith leads to a totalitarian society. Did you think the society depicted in TMC is particularly utopian?

  28. #28 GPPlascencia
    March 30, 2009

    The Flash reference made me cry out of laughter… :)

  29. #29 Tabby Lavalamp
    March 30, 2009

    Now if only the atheist character wasn’t a drunken supporter of inter-species sex. At least in House the atheist character is only a pill-popping asshole.

  30. #30 Yabo
    March 30, 2009

    #32

    Was wondering what Kiefer Sutherland had to do with anything. Is the AFA pissed at him?

  31. #31 Lauren Cocilova
    March 30, 2009

    Say cool. Say whip. Now say cool whip. ;)

    Family Guy has been somewhat lacking lately, but I thought this was some pretty good and timely social commentary. Even if we are all just a filament in Rob Lowe’s bedside lamp…

  32. #32 Sherry
    March 30, 2009

    LOVE Seth MacFarlane!

    In the episode where Peter is diagnosed as retarded, the doctor shows a chart that shows creationists lower on the IQ scale than Peter.

  33. #33 Isherwood
    March 30, 2009

    I was thrilled to see this episode. It’s another sign that we’re becoming “mainstream”, which I consider one more step towards acceptance.

    Sure, there are some distasteful characteristics in Brian, but I’m sure Seth McFarlane was taking pains to send a message without being unrealistic or preachy.

  34. #34 Yabo
    March 30, 2009

    Sorry I meant #22.

  35. #35 Quiet Desperation
    March 30, 2009

    Now if only Family Guy was funny.

    It’s an acquired taste, much like vegemite.

    Now go to the blackboard and write 100 times “Humor Is Subjective”

  36. #36 Joe L.
    March 30, 2009

    Brian has been confirmed as an atheist before, but it was nice to have a full episode about it. It has come up previously when he was dating a hot girl and I think he was reading The God Delusion or something in a bookstore.

    Seth MacFarlane, the creator and voice of most of the characters, is a well-known atheist too, btw.

    I found it strange how they never said “Jesus”, except for the one Jesus and wine joke. It was weird how Meg continuously talked about God and Our Lord, but never said “Jesus”. I wonder if that was some kind of concession or a compromise somehow.

  37. #37 Steve
    March 30, 2009

    Why is it that made-up characters have to say the most relevant, important things in our society? I mean, I watched the Transformers movie, and I wondered why a real person can’t say “Freedom is the right of all sentient beings.” Why don’t politicians say this? FFS, I am so disillusioned. Plus, Hollywood is stooping lower than ever for material.

  38. #38 Andrewc
    March 30, 2009

    It’s a shame that one of the only atheist is on that god-awful show. Joking about William Shatners dead wife…that’s classy

  39. #39 Sherry
    March 30, 2009

    Anyone who doesn’t think Family Guy is funny will never date my daughter. (Nor will anyone who doesn’t wear a helmet when they ski or snowboard.)

  40. #40 Steve
    March 30, 2009

    Mr. Welsh, you are so right. That Patrick Stewart boob line was hilarious!!

  41. #41 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    “Blah, blah, blah…Family Guy sucks…whine, whine, whine.”

    What the hell’s the matter with you people? I mean, I’m sad that Laugh-In got cancelled too, but I’ve gotten on with my life.

    You know what show would really suck? One that featured your opinions on what constitutes good TV. But I wouldn’t complain about it. I’d just change the channel.

  42. #42 www.10ch.org
    March 30, 2009

    @#38 Andrewc
    “It’s a shame that one of the only atheist is on that god-awful show.”
    At least it is a step in the right direction. Baby step, but at least it is a step.

  43. #43 lylebot
    March 30, 2009

    Family Guy is the opposite of an acquired taste. I liked it when it started, but the more I see of it the less I like it. An acquired distaste maybe?

  44. #44 www.10ch.org
    March 30, 2009

    @#41 Brownian
    “‘Blah, blah, blah…Family Guy sucks…whine, whine, whine.’

    What the hell’s the matter with you people?”
    People have the right to their own opinions. If people think that a show sucks, then so be it.

  45. #45 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    Anyone who doesn’t think Family Guy is funny will never date my daughter. (Nor will anyone who doesn’t wear a helmet when they ski or snowboard.)

    What about me, Sherry? I like Family Guy but have never worn a helmet while skiing or snowboarding. I can see why dating your daughter is out, but would it be alright if she and I just went for one of those ambiguous coffees where you’re not sure if it’s a date or just coffee so you have no frame of reference for evaluation and it seems like a good sign when the other person touches your hand but it?s just as likely they were simply reaching for another packet of ?Sugar in the Raw??

    PS: I haven?t skied or snowboarded in a decade-and-a-half. I?m going to be drinking my Venti Dark Roast by myself again, aren?t I?

  46. #46 firemancarl
    March 30, 2009

    This has to be the funniest show on TV. Those who have watched it for a long time already knew that Brian was an atheist. Stewie love cool whhip.

    The fact that they had the entire cast of STNG on, was 100% funny!

    God riding around like Flash Gordon!

  47. #47 Holbach
    March 30, 2009

    Ha! another reason why I like dogs. Of course, they don,t burden you with that religious crap, and if so, it would probably be named “heddle”.

  48. #48 Crystal D.
    March 30, 2009

    @7: It was pretty clearly the first time he ‘came out’ to his family, in as far as their reactions go… :)

    I thought it was cute and fun, and very true to life from my experiences!

  49. #49 BigZ
    March 30, 2009

    I’m laughing way to loudly at my work cubicle. This is a great episode.

  50. #50 Ichthyic
    March 30, 2009

    Ha! another reason why I like dogs. Of course, they don,t burden you with that religious crap, and if so, it would probably be named “heddle”.

    LOL

    noice!

    it would also probably be one of the smaller breeds; the kind that jump up and down and yap a lot.

  51. #51 mothworm
    March 30, 2009

    The Brian-being-an-atheist thing had been done before, but it was still nice to get a cultural shout-out. It was the ST:TNG crew that made that episode golden. Patrick Stewart is officially a comedy god (anybody else remember his “Erotic Bakery” from the time he hosted SNL?), but everyone from ST:TNG was flawless.

    Michael Dorn: “I have to pee again.”

    I think this needs a spin-off.

  52. #52 MAJeff, OM
    March 30, 2009

    Patrick Stewart is officially a comedy god (anybody else remember his “Erotic Bakery” from the time he hosted SNL?

    How about when he was a flaming interior decorator in Jeffrey. Flawless!

  53. #53 Frederik Rosenkjśr
    March 30, 2009

    @Welch #18 and Steve #40:

    If you like that you will love the episode of Extras (Ricky Gervais’ sitcom after The Office) featuring Patrick Stewart! :o)

  54. #54 Holbach
    March 30, 2009

    Ichthyic @ 50

    Yes, and yapping away in tongues that only heddle could comprehend.

  55. #55 AJ Milne
    March 30, 2009

    What about me, Sherry? I like Family Guy but have never worn a helmet while skiing or snowboarding. I can see why dating your daughter is out, but would it be alright if she and I just went for one of those ambiguous coffees where you’re not sure if it’s a date or just coffee so you have no frame of reference for evaluation and it seems like a good sign when the other person touches your hand but it?s just as likely they were simply reaching for another packet of ?Sugar in the Raw??

    I laugh at Family Guy mebbe 40 percent of the time–depends. Not sure if it’s my mood or the episode. And I usually wear a helmet when boarding, not usually when skiing (really only ditch the helmet when boarding very occasionally on very warm, spring days when the snow’s so soft you can’t get the board going much faster than 5 kph anyway, even down a cliff, and I just want a bit of wind in my hair for maybe an hour or two. I board accordingly, when doing so, try to keep it simple ‘n slow…)

    So can we mebbe just do a platonic/ambiguous lunch type thing?

    No?

    How ’bout if I promise to wear my helmet for lunch?

    (Glances at ring finger…) Oh… wait. Appears I’m married anyway. Never mind…

    Hey Brownian, where are you having that venti?

    (And my favourite Patrick Stewart comedy bit was the haughty maitre d’ in L.A. Story.)

  56. #56 damnedyankee
    March 30, 2009

    If I were God, I would totally be riding around on a hover sled among physics-defying floating mountains with Queen songs soundtracking me.

    It makes a hell of a lot more sense than the alleged All-Powerful Creator and Ruler of the Universe getting his robes in a bunch over peoples’ sex lives…

  57. #57 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    People have the right to their own opinions. If people think that a show sucks, then so be it.

    I agree they have the right, but doesn’t that come with an implied responsibility to have interesting opinions?

    For instance, I think John Mayer sucks. But instead of saying, “John Mayer sucks,” I’ll say something like “John Mayer is the musical equivalent of chronic fatigue syndrome”, or “Did you hear the Catholic Church changed its position on whether dead unbaptised babies go to limbo? Now they just spend an eternity on Percocet listening to ‘Your Body is a Wonderland’. Yeah, apparently it’s right there in some relatively obscure book in the Bible; the First Epistle of Ennui to the Zzz…snore or something like that.”

    See? “Family Guy sucks”–not interesting. “Family Guy is an exercise in pointless offensiveness attempting to mask mediocre writing, uninspired voice acting, and animation so simplistic it’s borderline insulting to anyone with functioning retinas”–interesting, or at least somewhat more so.

  58. #58 damnedyankee
    March 30, 2009

    “Did you hear the Catholic Church changed its position on whether dead unbaptised babies go to limbo? Now they just spend an eternity on Percocet listening to ‘Your Body is a Wonderland’. Yeah, apparently it’s right there in some relatively obscure book in the Bible; the First Epistle of Ennui to the Zzz…snore or something like that.”

    For some reason my brain had this spoken by Eddie Izzard.

  59. #59 BigZ
    March 30, 2009

    Actually, I lied for booze.

  60. #60 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    And my favourite Patrick Stewart comedy bit was the haughty maitre d’ in L.A. Story.

    Patrick Stewart as Maitre D’ of L’Idiot: “Let’s make this easier. Suppose you get the reservation and suppose you come down and we honor it. What might you order?”
    Steve Martin: “I might order the duck.”
    Head Chef: “He can’t.”
    PS: “You can’t.”
    SM: “Why?”
    PS: “You think with a financial statement like this you can order the duck? Where do you summ-EHR?”
    SM: “Excuse me?”
    PS [Exasperated]: “Where do you spend your summ-EHRs?”
    SM: “Here.”
    HC: “He can have the chicken.”
    PS: “You can have the chicken.”

    One of my all-time favourite movies ever. And I’m not really having a Venti. Instead I opted for the three-hour-old swill in the lunch/coffee room.

  61. #61 jay
    March 30, 2009

    27

    Did you think the society depicted in TMC is particularly utopian?

    Historically, utopias as envisioned tended to be quite authoritarian.

  62. #62 Ryano
    March 30, 2009

    I know I’m probably more in the company of atheists than TNG fans but did anyone else regain a bit of their youth when Patrick Stewart smashed Wil Wheaton’s head against the car window and said, “You’ll get nothing and like it!”

  63. #63 jay
    March 30, 2009

    Nor will anyone who doesn’t wear a helmet when they ski or snowboard.

    I’d be deeply suspicious of a family where a parent takes it upon herself to intrude into my personal choice of risks. Do you realize that certain things are simply not your business?

    And I feel sorry for a young adult with such a controlling parent.

  64. The unsurprising revelation was that Gawd zips around on a scooter playing “Flash Gordon!”, right?

  65. #65 Rick R
    March 30, 2009

    Sorry for my non-sequitor. But ERV started it! She posted “Whil Wheaton” (@ #8), and I thought it was a sort of Zen koan, alluding to some mystery unlocked by naming the cast of “Stand By Me”. Hence my “Keifer Sutherland”.

    Now that that’s cleared up, Jerry O’Connell. And yes, I’d like another Diet Pepsi. Kthx.

  66. #66 uncle frogy
    March 30, 2009

    why do people want the show to be relevant. This one does not take itself to important it makes fun of “the family” comedy shows, it is a parody of itself and usually goes off the rails and even laughs at the audience. no sacred cow unscathed!

  67. #67 Chris G
    March 30, 2009

    “Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Conway Twitty!”

  68. #68 Andrewc
    March 30, 2009

    The thing I don’t like about Family Guy is this…

    No one will find it funny 10 years. The first 6-7 years of The Simpsons will always be funny, same goes for any other classic show. Brian dressing up in banana costume and singing ‘Peanut Butter Jelly Time’ is only funny to people who happen to have seen that particular internet video (Not that it was very funny to begin with). Ten years from now no one will get it. Half the jokes on Family Guy aren’t really jokes, they’re just pointless references to something you may or may not have seen somewhere else, usually ripped-off verbatim with-out any new context. People should expect more from comedy writing other than ‘Heh-I remember that thing from the Internet/Movie/80′s Cartoon’. It’s lazy writing.

    So yeah thats why I don’t like Family Guy. That and, piss-poor voice acting, rudimentary animation, 5 minute Conway Twitty interludes insterted to cover the fact that you couldn’t write enough material to fill 20 minutes, and the fact that show constantly masturbates Seth McFarlanes ego. We get it, you like to sing show tunes… enough already.

  69. #69 arekksu
    March 30, 2009

    “…and if you think thaaat’s bad, remember the time when X…”

  70. #70 David Marjanovi?, OM
    March 30, 2009

    did anyone else regain a bit of their youth when Patrick Stewart smashed Wil Wheaton’s head against the car window and said, “You’ll get nothing and like it!”

    Uh? fortunately not, no?

    Also, I don’t snowboard, and I basically don’t ski down red slopes. (Black ones are scary to just look at.)

  71. #71 TerilynnS
    March 30, 2009

    I watched it for the TNG stuff and came away with a good dose of atheist dog and loved it. I rarely watch TV but the Trekkie in me couldn’t resist this.

    I laughed at the TNG characters – love their parts!

    But I had to smile when Brian laid into Meg at the book burning – seriously what god would give her a flat chest, a face like her father’s when her mother was a hottie? Evil deity indeed. ;)

  72. #72 Epinephrine
    March 30, 2009

    I’d be deeply suspicious of a family where a parent takes it upon herself to intrude into my personal choice of risks. Do you realize that certain things are simply not your business?

    And I feel sorry for a young adult with such a controlling parent.

    Hmm, as a parent, I’ll step in here and defend what was likely intended to be communicated.

    I’d be very unlikely to show approval for a potential partner for any of my children who fails to take adequate steps to assure their safety. I am well within my rights to comment to my children that I find the risky behaviours exhibited worrisome, and that I don’t want to see them end up a widow/er due to their partner’s inability to evaluate risk, or to have their potential children lose a potential parent due to ass-clownery such as playing russian roulette, drinking and driving, etc…

    Helmets when skiing aren’t as big a concern to me, but responsible adults will tend to do things like wear a helmet. And I certainly hope that if any of my children choose to get married that they select a partner that is responsible. I personally hate wearing a bicycle helmet, but I wear one; it sets a good example for children in the neighbourhood, as well as protecting my head (and the soft and very squishable contents) for the sake of my wife and children.

  73. #73 Paper Hand
    March 30, 2009

    @Jay #63

    I’m pretty sure Sherry was joking.

  74. #74 damnedyankee
    March 30, 2009

    I’d be deeply suspicious of a family where a parent takes it upon herself to intrude into my personal choice of risks. Do you realize that certain things are simply not your business?

    Like vaccinations?

  75. #75 Pablo
    March 30, 2009

    Why is it that made-up characters have to say the most relevant, important things in our society?

    Homer Simpson: “But Marge, what if we chose the wrong God? Then every Sunday when we go to church, the real god gets madder and madder…”

    Yet christians STILL think Pascal’s Wager is relevant.

    PS Great, some of you don’t like Family Guy. Good for you. Thanks for your opinion. Now go and contribute to threads that are about things you are interested in.

    You remind me of those morons in the 70s who would thought it was cool to go to a disco and shout, “DISCO SUCKS!” It’s like, “Look at me! Aren’t I clever and cool? I’m much smarter and more sophisticated than you! I’m too cool to like popular stuff.”

  76. #76 Nessa
    March 30, 2009

    If the whole Family Guy universe exists inside that lamp, does it mean the universe ended when the guy turned it off?

  77. #77 drksky
    March 30, 2009

    @Ryano, #62: Go watch Caddishack and you’ll get it…

  78. #78 drksky
    March 30, 2009

    D’oh! Sorry Ryano. Didn’t read you post closely enough.

    That’s what I get for skimming during lunch.

  79. #79 christian aaron
    March 30, 2009

    Family Guy not funny? Maybe the funniest line I’ve ever heard in my life… in Patrick Stewart’s voice no less, “Sorry about the upstairs bathroom Lois, but my post-sex urine stream forked in half and got everywhere.” Come on. eh? Come on….. you know. Come on…. that is gold, I tell ya’, gold!

  80. #80 Paul Fidalgo
    March 30, 2009

    I thought it hit home pretty hard: people really do feel like being an atheist is, as Lois said, “the worst thing you can be.” A little too truthful for comfort?

  81. #81 Andrewc
    March 30, 2009

    @#75

    We’re discussing Family Guy, so we’re offering our opinions on Family Guy. Some people don’t like it. Sorry this isn’t a thread where a bunch of Family Guy fanboy’s jerk eachother off talking about effing funny Family Guy is. Those morons who shouted “DISCO SUCKS!” in the ’70s were right, weren’t they?

    If you want some place free from dissenting opinions go to Church

  82. #82 Mike W
    March 30, 2009

    Its so simple, Family Guy=best show ever!

    i love the depictions of Jesus, and god throughout the series.

  83. #83 Badjuggler
    March 30, 2009

    Another vote for Patrick Stewart on Extras. And catch the Kate Winslet episode while you have it…

  84. #84 Susan
    March 30, 2009

    @ Andrewc

    It’s lazy writing.

    Precisely. You’ve put your finger on why I’ve never liked it. (Or laughed at any of their jokes.) In this case, however, the humor comes from a higher level context. I agree with this guy:
    Family Guy and the American Family Association: Two crappy institutions that miraculously bring out the best in each other.

  85. #85 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    If you want some place free from dissenting opinions go to Church

    Somebody‘s gonna get a stern look of disapproval by Nisbet and a mention in his next book.

  86. #86 jb
    March 30, 2009

    From #81:

    Sorry this isn’t a thread where a bunch of Family Guy fanboy’s jerk eachother off talking about effing funny Family Guy is

    It isn’t? Lame… *zips up pants*

  87. #87 NickG
    March 30, 2009

    “I’d be deeply suspicious of a family where a parent takes it upon herself to intrude into my personal choice of risks. Do you realize that certain things are simply not your business?”

    Not all risks should be considered personal choices. And the stupider the risk the less so.

    When you ride a motorcycle (or ski, or whatever high speed attempt to garner a Darwin Award you’d like) without a helmet you don’t just place yourself at risk. Lets say you crash and sustain a significant head injury. EMS judges that you are a high triage priority so you get transported in the first vehicle. This ensures the youngster from the car you hit with the ruptured spleen gets a slight delay in transport. In addition your transport to the hospital potentially endangers the community due to the blinky lights and the loud noises getting you there. Of course those carry only a small risk of really hurting anyone.

    Once you get there, you are successfully resuscitated. However you have severe head trauma so you spend upwards of a month in the ICU, three months in the hospital, and will be a permanent resident of a brain injury ‘rehab’ facility. During your time in the health care system you cost society quite literally millions of dollars directly compromising the services that can be provided others. The state Medicaid program in which you’d eventually end up as a member of the permanently disabled would, in a budget crunch, be unable to deny you admission to a hospital. So some kids with type 1 diabetes have to settle for 70/30 because they can’t afford to pay for lantus.

    In addition you may have an unrealistic family that declines to make you a DNR so you’re body is flogged with modern medicine every time you get sick. Your flora develop resistance to the quinolones, the extended spectrum penicillins, the macrolides, the aminoglycosides, sulfa, and eventually your multidrug resistant MRSA develops high level glycopeptide resistance and you die because we got nothing for ya, man. But you also start an epidemic of this strain of VRSA at your SNF and the hospital where you are dumped every time you get a fever or your feeding tube or foley gets yanked out by some minimum wage worker at the SNF who gets paid to change your diapers. Then its not just people like yourself in a persistent vegetative state who die, but chemo patients and premature infants who still have enough of a brain to feel pain and to suffer when they die.

    But hey, you’re a free spirit and are damned if you’ll let some busy-body freedom hating b**ch make you wear a helmet. Because otherwise the terrorists will win.

    Or in a few words: grow the fuck up.

  88. #88 Steve
    March 30, 2009

    Great episode, I really enjoyed it.

  89. #89 Rhysz
    March 30, 2009

    James Randi’s Youtube account has been SUSPENDED! Is there anyone who can pas this along to PZ? I think we need to fight this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7Cn_gjevik
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7Cn_gjevik&feature=channel_page

    Regards,
    Rhysz

  90. #90 Tabby Lavalamp
    March 30, 2009

    I’ve never nominated anyone for a Molly award yet. Can I put forth NickG’s name for the post at #87?

  91. #91 christian aaron
    March 30, 2009

    “Some people don’t like it. Sorry this isn’t a thread where a bunch of Family Guy fanboy’s jerk eachother off talking about effing funny Family Guy is. ”

    Yes, I hear you. Don’t mean to be condescending or anything, but apparently you need to hear that I hear you. There there now. Feel better? See, normal secure people don’t feel the need to call people names when they disagree, even when they are in the minority. They state their opinions and observe, waiting until they have something relevant to add to the conversation again, and then they add that bit. They don’t jump the shark and throw in their best “fanboy jerkoff” joke… that’s, um, for dic*heads and tards of f**k to do. Thanks for the heads up regarding what you are. :-)

  92. #92 AJ Milne
    March 30, 2009

    Because totally off-the-wall derails are fun (and ‘cos I am feeling slightly guilty that any ambiguity should be left about this by my post back up there)–I would absolutely say beginning boarders should wear helmets, at the very least. Do. Wear it. Trust me on this.

    Quick instruction for anyone who’s never been, and who’s thinking of trying boarding: it’s awesome, it’s fun. But even if you’re a skiier, and never wore a helmet on those, maybe ‘cos you’ve been doing it so long and it never occured to you and you just figured those guys who do so were doing so because they were doing something insanely more dangerous than you do or something (as I always assumed), wear one when starting on the board.

    Boarding falls are not like skiing falls. Your coach may or may not mention this (mine didn’t), but a very common fall when beginning boarding occurs when your downhill edge catches on the pack. When this happens, you get swung like a hammer at the hill. Your head gets the maximal angular momentum.

    This is bad. And dangerous. And hurts.

    And the really nasty thing about it? You don’t even have to be asking for it. You don’t have to be being silly, going fast, being macho, showing off, any of that. You can just be noodling innocently and cautiously down the hill, trying your best to get this thing right, and suddenly, it decides your head is a hammer anyway.

    So (a) get the lesson, and (b) go for the helmet, seriously, while taking it. Because that’s actually one of the times it’s most likely to pick up a few dents your head might have otherwise incurred.

  93. #93 Mena
    March 30, 2009

    He’s an atheist and now Newt Gingrich is a Catholic. What’s the world coming too?

  94. #94 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    I like this comment in reply to the article Susan linked to:

    Family Guy is now on the list of things hipsters have to say they don’t like. Please make a note of it.

    Living in the ass end of North America as I do (assuming North America’s ass points north), the hipster variant we’re most plagued with are music scenesters: “I used to like ‘Allergic to Nuts’ until they put out an album and a second person knew of their existence.” I guess one will grasp at any straw for validation to ward off the crushing realisation that a job at a trendy vinyl shop is still a retail job and only a step above working the frosting dispenser at Cinnabon.

  95. #95 DLC
    March 30, 2009

    Peter: “Yeah, it’s gonna be a ‘Meg’ episode. No one will blame you for changing the channel… Here’s the clicker”

  96. #96 Andrewc
    March 30, 2009

    @ #91

    I really don’t care if people hear me or not. My problem was that some people were getting a little too sensitive about people saying they didn’t like the show. If this were a Family Guy fansite where fans of the show came to talk about it, then yes, posting comments about why I don’t like it would be dickish. But it’s not that kind of site. The topic of Family Guy came up and I gave my opinion, grow a thicker skin.

  97. #97 AJ Milne
    March 30, 2009

    “I used to like ‘Allergic to Nuts’ until they put out an album and a second person knew of their existence.”

    It’s not entirely bad… I got The Cure’s entire back catalogue from someone when Disintegration started climbing the charts. For free. On exactly this principle. He was suddenly terribly disappointed that too many people were wearing their T-shirts.

  98. #98 Sili
    March 30, 2009

    Why is that girl wearing a diaphraghm on her hed? Is this the famed “ignorance only” dealie?

  99. #99 Vic
    March 30, 2009

    James Randi’s Youtube account has been SUSPENDED! Is there anyone who can pas this along to PZ? I think we need to fight this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7Cn_gjevik
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7Cn_gjevik&feature=channel_page

    Regards,
    Rhysz

    Thanks for passing this along. I have already sent a message to You Tube. Others should, too.

  100. #100 Mike K
    March 30, 2009

    ‘I lied to get booze!’
    I loved that one!

  101. #101 Blake Stacey
    March 30, 2009

    See? “Family Guy sucks”–not interesting. “Family Guy is an exercise in pointless offensiveness attempting to mask mediocre writing, uninspired voice acting, and animation so simplistic it’s borderline insulting to anyone with functioning retinas”–interesting, or at least somewhat more so.

    Now, that’s the kind of diatribe I can get behind! It also helps explain why I occasionally enjoy the show (in some small but non-negligible percentage of the times I happen to walk past a friend with it playing on their computer). On those occasions, the offensiveness turns stochastically in a meaningful direction, and a fragile bubble of entertainment value appears. The bubble is popped anon, but its evanescent iridescence momentarily redeems the show from utter banality.

    Your mileage, of course, may vary.

  102. #102 ERV
    March 30, 2009

    #96– My problem was that some people were getting a little too sensitive about people saying they didn’t like the show.

    *shrug* I just think youre weird. I was under the impression that everyone had heard the word.

  103. #103 theinquisitor
    March 30, 2009

    He’s like a four-legged Hitchens.

    Finally we’re starting to see positive portrayals of atheists and negative portrayals of theists on popular media. And the cast of TNG! I think I might start watching this show again now.

  104. #104 OctoberMermaid
    March 30, 2009

    @#102
    “*shrug* I just think youre weird. I was under the impression that everyone had heard the word.”

    No, no, no, no, no, no, NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

  105. #105 No Guy in the Sky
    March 30, 2009

    I never watch the show. I thought that was a great start. I hope they expand the issues a couple more times over the season. Thanks for showing me this.

  106. #106 Ryan Cunningham
    March 30, 2009

    Brian usually voices the writer’s thoughts, so I think this means there’s more of us!

  107. #107 AJ Milne
    March 30, 2009

    One of my all-time favourite movies ever.

    All I need to know in life, I learned from L.A. Story:

    1. Art galleries are best appreciated on roller blades.

    2. Always keep a gun in your glove compartment. And keep it loaded.

    3. There’s no jet lag some sleep and a good fuck can’t cure.

    4. For a first date, you just can’t beat dinner and an enema.

    5. She’s not too young for you if she’s gonna be 27 in four years.

    6. A twist of lemon goes great with a twist of lemon.

    7. If a digital road sign gives you advice, pay attention…

  108. #108 Sherry
    March 30, 2009

    Feel sorry for MY daughter! hahahahaha

    First of all, I have a picture of her at 4yo, held up by a Klingon, by her ears.

    Then, know how most people can’t remember when they couldn’t ride a bike? She can’t remember when she didn’t know how to ski/snowboard.

    Her Dad and I are still in love and married after 22years. (1st and only)

    We have a family membership to the Natural History Museum.

    My kid knows how good she’s got it. Pretty sure she wouldn’t even want to date somebody who doesn’t take care of their brain. She’s seen people rehab from TBI from injuries, some even with helmets.

    One of our family traditions is our yearly trip to StarFest in Denver. They’ve seen blind StarFleet officers with guide dogs since they were little kids.

    Sorry for my kids…. hell I wish I could have had the lives they’ve had so far.

  109. #109 AtheistAcolyte
    March 30, 2009

    @ERV – #102 –

    What’s the word?
    ;-)

  110. #110 Susan
    March 30, 2009

    @ Brownian

    I like this comment in reply to the article Susan linked to:
    Family Guy is now on the list of things

    Now?! I was a hipster years ago.

  111. #111 The Biologista
    March 30, 2009

    WHil WHeaton?

  112. #112 deep
    March 30, 2009

    How is it that Kirk Cameron seems MORE intelligent (at least coherent) when depicted on Family Guy!?!? I mean it’s family guy, every character, especially famous ones, says something inanely stupid or is at least depicting doing something weird, and here they let the one guy they could just copy and paste his lines from real life and still be hilariously funny…and they let him slide…geez. They barely even poked at him for being a childhood actor.

  113. #113 ERV
    March 30, 2009

    @ 104, 109–
    Well, I mean its about standards. Im at a place called ‘ScienceBlogs’, so I expect commentors to have a certain level of scientific literacy, whether its the basics of astronomy or virology or ornithology.

    If you dont know things EVERYBODY knows, you might as well go hang out at UD.

  114. #114 Javar
    March 30, 2009

    According to Gallup polls, one in twelve Americans is unaware that the bird is the word.

  115. #115 Kel
    March 30, 2009

    I lol’d at “worse than hitler”

  116. #116 Daniel
    March 30, 2009

    Brian is way too suave and intelligent to believe in god. Also, “Logic for First Graders” was great.

  117. #117 MAJeff, OM
    March 30, 2009

    What’s the word?

    NO DON’T!

  118. #118 RJC
    March 30, 2009

    Re: #20′s link (http://www.afa.net/familyguy2.htm)

    Someone needs to teach them the definitions of condone and fiction, and how they relate to each other.

  119. #119 PZ Myers
    March 30, 2009

    What’s the word?

    The…bird? The bird is the word?

  120. #120 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    Damn you PZ! Now you’ve done it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZThquH5t0ow

  121. #121 Kel
    March 30, 2009

    Re: #20′s link (http://www.afa.net/familyguy2.htm)

    That was awesome, it was all the funniest bits of the episode.

  122. #122 Strider
    March 30, 2009

    I laughed at the first two Conway Twitty bits but the ep with the entire SONG in it? C’mon, they can’t think up anything funnier to fill time? It seems like these kind of things are happening more in this season than in previous. I’ve also been dismayed at some of the jokes in past eps (e.g., I don’t find ANY of the jokes regarding suspicion of JonBenet Ramsay’s (now absolved) parents funny) but I figure someone must find them funny and I don’t have to watch the show; I still do, though. Overall, I enjoy the show.

  123. #123 ERV
    March 30, 2009

    Scientific evidence to back up my claims at ~4 min.

  124. #124 Sven DiMilo
    March 30, 2009

    Actually,

    What’s the word?

    Johannesburg!

    [oops...are we still boycotting YouTube?]

  125. #125 normalityrelief
    March 30, 2009

    I just love that they mock Kirk Cameron so much!

  126. #126 CRS
    March 30, 2009

    @114:

    Oh tyvm. Now my roommate is on a kick and I must endure constant refrains from the most annoying Family Guy episode ever.

    I guess my only option is a pair of headphones and Peter Griffin’s Shipoopi

  127. #127 Sven DiMilo
    March 30, 2009

    I haven’t watched the program enough to judge whether it’s funny or not, but I must say that the American Patriarchy Ass. summary (see link @#20) is a laff riot:

    # Peter leaves his son Chris in charge of the family while he spends time with his gay partner. Upon his new role, Chris immediately passes gas in his sister?s face and knocks out his mother, Lois.
    # Their child, Baby Stewie, eats cereal covered with horse sperm that resembled milk kept in the refrigerator.

    Now that’s comedy!

  128. #128 Fred Mounts
    March 30, 2009

    One Eyed Jack @ 19

    This really didn’t surprise you, did it? So long as the human race exits, there will be religion.

    The part that surprised me was that it was ubiquitous. I was at least hoping that there’d just be the random wackjob, not an entire society still going on about it.

  129. #129 not american
    March 30, 2009

    Hey PZ any chance you could stop linking to media thats US only. thedailyshow.com and hulu being two examples of things the rest of us can’t watch.

  130. #130 Carman
    March 30, 2009

    my vote is also: Patrick Stewart on Extras

  131. #131 peter
    March 30, 2009

    #17:

    Now if only Family Guy was funny.

    Fuck you Michelle R., you stupid fucking bitch.

  132. #132 Kel
    March 30, 2009

    Hey PZ any chance you could stop linking to media thats US only. thedailyshow.com and hulu being two examples of things the rest of us can’t watch.

    I get “The Daily Show” just fine in Australia.

  133. #133 MAJeff, OM
    March 30, 2009

    Fuck you Michelle R., you stupid fucking bitch.

    aaaand, Peter’s misogynist ass needs to die.

  134. #134 AJ Milne
    March 30, 2009

    AJ’s* principle of internet discussion: there is no topic so apparently inconsequential that it cannot spark a flame war.

    *Okay, sure, so someone else has already probably recognized this. But if not, I would be truly flattered to have an internet principle named after me. (Crosses fingers…)

  135. #135 Dagger
    March 30, 2009

    Yeah… I’ve had conversations like that. Repeatedly.

    My personal favorite had to be the one person who, after I told them I was an atheist, and then defined “atheist” for them, asked me if I was Jewish.

  136. #136 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    Okay, sure, so someone else has already probably recognized this. But if not, I would be truly flattered to have an internet principle named after me. (Crosses fingers…)

    I’m on board! Of course, I’ve been flogging my own, “Brownian’s Corollary” for a while now. It’s not a quick process. It helps if you formalise the wording first, I suspect.

  137. #137 Faid
    March 30, 2009

    Looks like the manatees did a fairly good job with this one.

  138. #138 Nathan
    March 30, 2009

    NickG @ 87

    Well said.

  139. #139 eddie
    March 30, 2009

    NickG @87
    Snowboarders know about slippery slopes already.

  140. #140 Janine, Insulting Sinner
    March 30, 2009

    Posted by: Dagger | March 30, 2009

    Yeah… I’ve had conversations like that. Repeatedly.

    My personal favorite had to be the one person who, after I told them I was an atheist, and then defined “atheist” for them, asked me if I was Jewish.

    I will go you one better. After going through all that, the person asked me if I worshiped satan. I had to explain that if I do not beleive in a deity that also means I do not believe in demons.

  141. #141 Kitty'sBitch
    March 30, 2009

    So ERV and PZ are Family Guy fans.
    Somehow, that just makes sense. Family Guy often has little anti-religion/anti-creationist jokes tucked away somewhere.
    With the size of their audience, I like to think they are helping a few conversions along.
    Fingers crossed.

  142. #142 Brownian
    March 30, 2009

    Pfft. There goes NickG, defending the ‘nanny state’ again. When will you socio-commie-liberals realise that there’s no such thing as society, only a collective of rationally-minded individuals whose every interaction can be codified through the exchange of currency, preferably one based on the gold standard, because gold is magically makes us immune to everything we don’t like?

    Every tax dollar used to pay the salary of authoritarian government employees means one less patent for new ways to dispense toothpaste. Is it really worth it, just to save a few hundred million lives?

  143. #143 Dagger
    March 30, 2009

    I will go you one better. After going through all that, the person asked me if I worshiped satan. I had to explain that if I do not beleive in a deity that also means I do not believe in demons.

    Don’t think I’ve ever had someone ask me if I worshipped Satan- I’ve had to explain to more than a few people that not believing in God means that I don’t believe in Satan either, though.

  144. #144 Janine, Insulting Sinner
    March 30, 2009

    Brownian sounds like a certain ex vengeance demon.

    I’m just so excited! They come in; I help them. They give us money in exchange for goods; you give me money for working for you. I have a place in the world now. I’m part of the system. I’m a working gal!

    When are you going to do the dance of capitalist superiority?

  145. #145 eddie
    March 30, 2009

    Nothing wrong with a mom giving her daughter dating advice. But to insist on such a high level of maturity and good sense, you should spare a thought for the guy’s sorely neglected wife and kids.

  146. #146 Philip Kahn
    March 30, 2009

    So, then, you guys have heard about the bird? You know that the bird is the word?

  147. #147 MacNTosh
    March 30, 2009

    How is it that the only two positive portrayals of atheists (Brian and House) are on, of all things, Fox network?

    Rhetorical question, I know why, but it still seems strange.

  148. #148 Andyo
    March 31, 2009

    Last week they sneaked in a “for fuck’s sake” unbleeped. It was hilarious (the CC said “for Fox sake”, they were at the Fox channel).

    Seth MacFarlane has gone at it with religion and creationists in particular since FG got started. Funny how the one originally unaired ep (the Jewish-mocking one) got the heads-up from the Jewish people they talked to (McFarlane in the DVD commentary IIRC).

    If you’ve seen his channel in youtube he also has some clips with these themes.

  149. #149 Andyo
    March 31, 2009

    BTW, I didn’t mean our Jewish overlords canned the ep, haha. I mean the one ep that was so “bad” that it had to be canned, got the “meh, it’s all right” from the target people, while the christians complain for every freakin innocuous little thing.

  150. #150 Wayne Robinson
    March 31, 2009

    The reference to Jagermeister reminded me that I bought a big bottle of it 27 years ago, and it is still sitting in the bottom of my fridge, so I got it out… Does it ever go off? Is it supposed to burn the lining of your mouth, throat and gullet? At least Vegemite tastes good.

  151. #151 Dr Horrible
    March 31, 2009

    Badjuggler@83

    Another vote for Patrick Stewart on Extras. And catch the Kate Winslet episode while you have it…

    Great, after recalling Kate’s appearance, now I need a cold shower! :P

    Also, Patrick Stewart is great as an opera ‘queen’ in Frasier!

  152. #152 Ian Bellis
    March 31, 2009

    re: positive portrayals of atheists…

    Another one on Fox — lead character on “Bones” is most definitely not a believer

  153. #153 Jim
    March 31, 2009

    That was a great episode, overall.

  154. #154 MP2K
    March 31, 2009

    It was pretty good times.

    If you’re interested, Seth McFarline was on Adam Corolla’s podcast a bit ago. They semi-drunkenly ramble on, and they both mention their atheism and touch on that for a while. There are a few face-palm worth bits in there (Mostly from Adam Corolla) but it’s still pretty good, albeit long.

  155. #156 Sherry
    March 31, 2009

    I have one last point to make about Family Guy AND helmets:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaJWz5c9vDE&feature=related

  156. #157 Ben
    March 31, 2009

    #27

    Warhammer 40K is just a rip off of the God Emperor of Dune. =)

  157. #158 NickG
    March 31, 2009

    Brownian @ 142: ?Pfft. There goes NickG, defending the ‘nanny state’ again.?

    Your reference to the ‘nanny state’ is blatantly sexist and evidences significant heteronormative privilege that perpetuates the stereotype of child care providers as young females who have not yet embarked on a heterosexual marriage. I prefer the ‘gender-neutral pre-partnered in home long term child care provider state’ as a more culturally sensitive alternative.

  158. #159 Sven DiMilo
    March 31, 2009

    I have this hypothesis that Jagermeister and Simple Green are the same product in different bottles.

  159. #160 DinoBoy
    April 1, 2009

    Best. Post. Ever. Best Family Guy ever! Thank you for alerting me to this episode Professor Myers. A truly heroic atheist central character, the entire cast of Next Gen, god as Flash Gordon. And just when I thought this episode had it all… The first on-screen pair up of Rob Lowe and Adam West.

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