Having been on the air for over 20 years now, Family Guy has garnered a reputation for being outlandish and heavy into dark humour. One of the best adult cartoons of the century, the show is structured heavily around cutaway gags. While they’re often hilarious, they do cross the line at times. However, here’s 10 cutaways that you can get a laugh out of and not get cancelled for liking.
10. Cutting in line in front of Italians
Italians in American TV and culture have long been depicted as loud and mafia like. This cutaway gag from season five of the show perfectly plays into that.
The gag shows a group of Italian men donned in necklaces and greasy haircuts, standing in line for the cinema. Casually, someone attempts to cut in front of everyone, causing a chorus of Italian trademark catchphrases “EHHHH” and “OHHHHH” to break out.
The gag is short and sweet and an example of Family Guy not needing to be offensive to be funny.
9. Army Guys
Peter Griffin’s overconfidence and naivety often makes for great laughs. This gag from one of the earlier seasons of Family Guy does just that. Drawing back on the time he was part of the military in the Vietnam War, the gag starts with a group of soldiers scurrying into the war-zone in their cameo gear blending into the background.
Peter appears in a clown costume, totally out of place. The best part? He starts calling fellow soldiers stupid as the enemy would be “looking for army guys,” failing to realise that dressing up as a clown makes him the most obvious to spot out.
Despite taking place in a serious setting like the Vietnam War, Peter’s stupidity makes for a funny while inoffensive gag.
8. The Colonel
Once again revolving around the overconfident loveable idiot that is Peter Griffin, this gag takes place in a KFC. Peter is angered by the fact he travelled all the way to Kentucky and the Colonel wasn’t in. In true Peter fashion, he’s unaware that KFC founder Colonel Sanders had long passed away.
The KFC employee tries to explain that Sanders is dead. Failing to understand his Southern accent, Peter continues to ask where the Colonel is.
7. Peter’s Christmas Album
Peter has entered many fields of work during the show’s lifetime. One of his more interesting being a Christmas carol singer and releasing an album.
This gag is a commercial for Peter’s album, who did renditions of famous and classic Christmas tunes. Of course, Peter has put his own spin on them and to great effect. There’s something funny about a grown man singing the lyrics to Little Drummer Boy, “I brought these gifts for you, they’re up in my bum” as if he’s six-years-old.
6. Giant Crab
Throughout the series, Peter has gotten into some bizarre situations. Having a giant crab in front of his house refusing guests to enter is one of the more stranger ones.
Prior to cutting to the gag, Peter has friend and neighbour Joe Swanson over for dinner, explaining to them it’s nice “to have people over now that the giant crab is gone”.
Cut to the gag surely enough there’s a giant crab walking side to side blocking the entrance to the Griffin’s home. It’s brilliant without being offensive.
5. Electric Company Spelling
Another one of Peter’s side ventures, this cutaway shows Peter on the show ‘The Electric Company’ in which a silhouette of himself and another man work together to spell words.
Peter struggles to keep up, and after the other guy spells out the word fat mocking Peter’s appearance, Peter has enough and a fight breaks out.
A gag from their earlier seasons of the Family Guy, it’s in good humour and one of the show’s classic cutaway gags.
4. Butt Scratcher
After sending Chris to a private school and realising how expensive the tuition fees are, Peter contemplates working a second job, wondering if he could get his old job back which was selling butt-scratcher as ball games.
Cut to the gag, and it shows Peter in action in his old job as a butt-scratcher seller. The combination of Peter and fans casually yelling “butt scratcher” at each other and fans keen to buy such a ridiculous product, makes for a classic cutaway gag.
3. Peter Rides the Washing Machine
Peter is a man that enjoys the simpler things in life. This is shown in this cutaway gag in which Peter literally puts himself in the washing machine.
There’s a long build to the gag. The high school in which Peter’s kids attend named after actor James Woods, holds a meeting to change the name change of the school, which Peter is against.
When the name change doesn’t get through, Peter claims it made him more “excited than that time he got to ride the washing machine”. Cutting to him having a great time in the washing machine, while his wife takes clothes out of the dryer next to him clearly desensitised by her husband’s stupid antics.
2. Peter Narrates his Life
Featuring Peter’s ignorance again, this gag shows Peter narrating his life while eating dinner. He explains that he’s not pleased with Lois’ cooking, not realising that he’s speaking aloud and sitting at the same table as her.
When the narration changes from his wife’s cooking to just narrating on his wife’s appearances, Lois eventually has enough and strikes back. The build up is long, but Peter getting his just desserts makes for a funny gag.
1. Brian, There’s a message in my Alpha-Bits
This gag came from one of Family Guy’s earliest seasons, yet is still one of the shows funniest.
The cutaway shows Peter excitedly eating breakfast, believing there’s a message in his alphabet shaped cereal on his spoon. Appearing to be spooked, Peter turns to Brian claiming there’s a message and it’s “OOOO” with Brian saying they’re Cheerios.
No swearing. No offensive remarks. Just plain Peter stupidly thinking there was a message in his cereal, unaware they’re the ring-shaped cereal Cheerios.
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