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Which is worse: The Simpsons or Family Guy?
Hawk at 1:54PM, Jan. 14, 2010
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It's long past the point where we can argue about which one's better… The Simpsons has lasted far longer than most shows deserve to and Family Guy seems determined to get just as bad, quicker. Here's a rundown of what they've become, as I see it:

The Simpsons:
- pushed Homer beyond even the cartoon limits of stupidity, making him so predictably unfunny that you yearn for the Season 1 Homer that actually cared about his wife and kids.
- uses more and more outlandish plots because after 20 years, what more can the Simpsons do? Deface Australia! Go into space! Remember when they just dealt with family and school issues?
- has pulled the celebrity card so many times that you pretty much expect an attention-hungry star to show up in each new episode.
- has worn out and ruined even its supporting cast. Formerly funny side-characters have become one-dimensional caricatures of their former selves.
- can't keep the family's past OR future straight because they've been so careless with the timeline.

Family Guy:
- recycles its gags to the point of ruining even the best ones.
- wastes huge chunks of episodes on gags like Conway Twitty or the fighting chicken. The fact that they're wasting time becomes the joke.
- has Brian Griffin as Seth McFarlane's own personal preachy Mary-Sue to push his political views.
- frequently cheaps out with long clips of non-animation to save time and money.
- made a spectacular waste of a Start Trek: The Next Generation reunion.
- has two other primetime shows just like it in case we get bored of this one.

It hurts me to see what Simpsons has become because it was my favorite TV show for such a long time. But if I were to choose which show is worse, I would have to choose Family Guy. It just seems more tasteless and reliant on cheap humor. And it still feels like, at its heart, a Simpsons ripoff.

What do you think? Which of these two shows is the worst?
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:47PM
kingofsnake at 3:15PM, Jan. 14, 2010
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Both shows are fine. Not great, but still better than a lot of other stuff. Simpsons is ‘hit and miss," which I have no problem with as long as continues to get the occasional hit. The 450th episode was on last week and I was laughing a lot. Maybe not as much as I did during the Scorpio episode, but enough to make the show worth while. I don’t know what you expect the Simpsons to be, but considering it's age it's far better than it rightfully should be.

Family Guy is just jokes. It's just a bunch of animated jokes with a tenuous connection, and the quality of any episode is completely dependent in the quality of it's individual jokes.

Honestly if I had to choose the worse one it'd be Family Guy, simply because this season has been riddled with Brian's pro-atheism preaching (which I find equally annoying as pro-catholic preaching.) Anyone sitting down to watch Family Guy doesn't give a shit about your stupid beliefs, Seth, we watch your show for the poop jokes.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:16PM
WiffleBall at 5:08PM, Jan. 14, 2010
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Sipmpsons>Family Guy

In it's earlier seasons Family Guy was actually not bad. It has degraded so much since then it's unbearable to watch.

And now with The Cleveland Show Seth MacFarlane is ripping off himself. I hate that man with a passion.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:49PM
Product Placement at 9:37PM, Jan. 14, 2010
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Since I have fond childhood memories of the early seasons of the Simpsons, I'm gonna have to give them the “sucks less” title.

Family guy was in my opinion a funny show when it was new but it grew old very quickly. Another reason why the Simpsons deserves that title. It took way longer for that show to grow old.
Hawk
The Simpsons:
- can't keep the family's past OR future straight because they've been so careless with the timeline.
Being someone who loves properly set up continuity, I can relate so much to this complaint. I hated so much the flashback episode about the time when Marge went to college and broke up with Homer. The thing that pissed me off the most? It was set in the 90's! Up to that point, they had been rather consistent with the time frame of the backstory. Homer's mother left him in the 60's, he met Marge in the 70's they had their kids in the 80's. I understand the desire to create an episode to make fun of the 90's but rewriting the history of the Simpson family was a downright stupid move if you ask me. In fact, I kinda felt insulted.
kingofsnake
“the Scorpio episode”
Ok. I have to admit. I love that episode.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
ozoneocean at 2:18AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Product Placement
Hawk
The Simpsons:
- can't keep the family's past OR future straight because they've been so careless with the timeline.
Being someone who loves properly set up continuity, I can relate so much to this complaint. I hated so much the flashback episode about the time when Marge went to college and broke up with Homer. The thing that pissed me off the most? It was set in the 90's! Up to that point, they had been rather consistent with the time frame of the backstory. Homer's mother left him in the 60's, he met Marge in the 70's they had their kids in the 80's. I understand the desire to create an episode to make fun of the 90's but rewriting the history of the Simpson family was a downright stupid move if you ask me. In fact, I kinda felt insulted.
What the…?I
Continuity in the Simpsons? o_O

It's totally unimportant there. Irrelevant even. Always has been. I mean, it HAS to be: they never age. Maggie is still a baby after 20 years!
Because the family is stuck at the same age actual time has to move to compensate. The only alternative to that is to make the whole show totally and scrupulously retro in every respect, like That 70's Show or something.

It's really better that they move and bounce through history with impunity. Silly shows like the Simpsons NEED that freedom or they're buggered.

One thing I've always hated about some comics like say Superman or Batman is that THEY didn't stick with proper timelines. I'd really rather prefer Batman and Superman still stuck in the 30's or whenever they were conceived, but people don't seem to have much of a problem that most old comic titles continually update their origins.

—————–
As to which is worse… I haven't seen a new episode of either for years, since I've stayed away from TV for the most part, but Family Guy was always very weak while the Simpsons would have some episodes that failed completely and others that were a roaring success. I imagine they just continued that way?
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
lothar at 2:52AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Deface Australia! Go into space!

thats a joke rite ?

they did both before season ten if i recall. so they cut away from family and school issues a long time ago.

maybe they could go back to the more uplifting type of episode like #3 where homer attempts suicide because he is fired.


last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
ozoneocean at 4:15AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Oh he's right about the smaller scale storylines. Big, silly, crazy, huge things happening can be fun, but there's a lot more mileage in something smaller and family centred- since the Simpsons has a little family at its core in a little town in a comedy-cartoon-realistic setting.

Leave the bugger stuff for Futurama, afterall, that's what it was designed for.

…but that's cancelled or something now isn't it? -_-

————-
One thing about the Simpsons; maybe Homer becoming Mr Stupid was a little annoying, but I was SO glad when Lisa and Marge finally stopped being whiney, smartarse, holier-than-thou arseholes!
Don't tell me they went back to that?
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
lothar at 5:44AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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futurama was canceld after 3 seasons … then resurected , then cancled again

ive seen every episode of the simpsons so many times i forgot wich ones came first realy . the only ones i can realy see a difference with are season one , because they are so unfunny most of the time - they remind me more of the flintstones . but i haven't seen many of the newer seasons cuz i left the USA after season 16 . but the ones i have seen do seem a bit strained . butt ,sweet zombie jeezus, they have 450 episodes !! that scrazy as hell !!
i like how that little green alien dude from the flintstones showed up that one time , shows that the writer know they are beating a dying horse .
as long as they dont start traveling through time to different historical eras , cuz then you know they are doomed . the Smurfs did it and they were cancled the next year !
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
I Am The 1337 Master at 6:23AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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I dont find either one that funny. Sorry.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:53PM
kingofsnake at 6:50AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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ozoneocean
I'd really rather prefer Batman and Superman still stuck in the 30's or whenever they were conceived



DC has this series called First Wave coming out that takes place in the 40's and stars Doc Savage and a young Batman (back when he carried a pistol) and the Spirit and some other pulp characters. There was a Batman v. Doc Savage comic last fall that I thought was pretty good

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:16PM
Dark Pascual at 8:09AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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I have to admit that I still like both shows, The Simpsons a little bit more than Family Guy.

Of course that both are A LOT less funny than before, but considering that it's not the same writing team in charge, is understandable, and I get a decent laugh from them.

However, Family Guy managed to become almost unfunny in less time than The Simpsons…
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:07PM
PhilWrede at 8:09AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Lothar
futurama was canceld after 3 seasons … then resurected , then cancled again

And it's coming back again: http://scifiwire.com/2010/01/spoilers-sick-jokes-from.php (the third story down)! …Let's just hope that the new episodes are funnier than the movies…

kingofsnake
DC has this series called First Wave coming out that takes place in the 40's and stars Doc Savage and a young Batman (back when he carried a pistol) and the Spirit and some other pulp characters. There was a Batman v. Doc Savage comic last fall that I thought was pretty good

I'll second that! Batman/Doc Savage was quite awesome! And I cannot wait to see Rags Morales' take on the Spirit, and the Blackhawks, and the Man of Bronze…

But to get back to the topic at hand… The Simpsons may be relying on ass-dumb stories with a moronic protagonist that's stretching the boundaries of believability, even in a cartoon, but at least they're not putting out DVDs that are one long extended shitty Star Wars parody. Simpsons for the win.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:43PM
Product Placement at 8:56AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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ozoneocean
What the…?I
Continuity in the Simpsons? o_O

It's totally unimportant there. Irrelevant even. Always has been. I mean, it HAS to be: they never age. Maggie is still a baby after 20 years!
Because the family is stuck at the same age actual time has to move to compensate. The only alternative to that is to make the whole show totally and scrupulously retro in every respect, like That 70's Show or something.

It's really better that they move and bounce through history with impunity. Silly shows like the Simpsons NEED that freedom or they're buggered.
There's nothing wrong with the idea of keeping the Simpsons in a timeless age that always correlates with the current time period but the background stories are set in a fixed time period. I'm not asking for Maggie to grow up (although I do find it incredibly stupid that Apu's octuplets seem to be maturing and have passed Maggie in development). Just that they stay loyal to the original background story.
lothar
futurama was canceld after 3 seasons … then resurected , then cancled again
It never got canceled again. I read a long time ago that they were planning to make a new season once they were done with the movies. In fact they viewed the movies as the fifth season where each movie is the equivalent of 4 episodes.

I'm very glad that they're going into the normal episode format again. The Futurama humor doesn't seem to work that well in such long story formats.

One thing that I noticed in that article that PhilWrede posted the link for:
Article
The DVD film Bender's Big Score came closest to allowing Fry and Leela to get together, and Sagal said there's still hope for them in the new season. “There's always hope for her and Fry,” Sagal said. “It's an ongoing struggle, but they keep trying to make it work. They continue.”
… So I take it that the writer of that article hasn't seen “Into the Wild Green Yonder”. They did the most halved assed attempt to tie them together with a last minute “ ‘Btw. I love you’ ‘Oh, I love you to’ ” moment at the end of that one. While it was anti climatic, it solidified the fact that they were starting a relationship at that point so I'm gonna guess that they're going to be together during the next season. Unless of course the writers decide that they broke up again for some reason before the start of the next episode.
Those were my two cents.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
Hawk at 9:05AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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ozoneocean
One thing about the Simpsons; maybe Homer becoming Mr Stupid was a little annoying, but I was SO glad when Lisa and Marge finally stopped being whiney, smartarse, holier-than-thou arseholes!
Don't tell me they went back to that?

I don't know if they ever really stopped. You're right though, to me Lisa had become nearly unbearable. I used to really identify with Lisa because I was the kid brainiac of my family. But she went from being a nearly normal, smart little girl to some kind of preachy nonconformist nag. What eight-year-old changes her religion or becomes a vegetarian?

It was refreshing when in this latest episode Lisa got all giddy for a television princess. Maybe there's a little girl inside there yet.

Marge is another story. Maybe it's the voice, but I just expect her to be annoying by default.

Product Placement
There's nothing wrong with the idea of keeping the Simpsons in a timeless age that always correlates with the current time period but the background stories are set in a fixed time period. I'm not asking for Maggie to grow up (although I find it incredibly stupid that Apu's octuplets seem to be maturing instead and have passed Maggie in development). Just that they stay loyal to the original background story.

The 90's episode was what really broke it for me, too.

I just remember that Family Guy really broke continuity, too. Brian Griffin found out he had a son… one who was a young teenager, while Brian's only 7 years old. And the son was entirely human, by the way.

It bugs me the Brian is able to find so many women who would date a dog.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:47PM
Product Placement at 9:19AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Hawk
I just remember that Family Guy really broke continuity, too. Brian Griffin found out he had a son… one who was a young teenager, while Brian's only 7 years old. And the son was entirely human, by the way.

It bugs me the Brian is able to find so many women who would date a dog.
WOW. That does sound incredibly stupid. But then again, I never expected anything less from Family guy. Wasn't really expecting any flow of continuity either. Although, they have done some continuity moves before, like when Peter lost his job at the toy plant and picked up fishing. The next season had him go to work in his fishing boat until he had to stop doing that. Isn't he working at a beer bottling plant now?
Those were my two cents.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
kingofsnake at 11:36AM, Jan. 15, 2010
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The made fun of the Brian's son thing in show. When it was introduced Stewie was questioning it and Brian says to him “If you don't like it complain about it on the internet”
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:16PM
Dark Pascual at 12:09PM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Have to admit that one of the most satisfying moments on Family Guy was when Quagmire teared Brian a new one.

Hopefully, somebody will slap Lisa in the face soon too and tell her to stop being such a jerk.

Both Lisa and Brian are so annoying that ruin the watching experience for me most of the times…
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:07PM
shirkersama at 12:34PM, Jan. 15, 2010
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I agree that the simpsons has just been on too long, but I don't understand the dislike for Family Guy. As far as I'm concerned it's still one of the best shows on T.V. yeah, Brian's annoying, but I know a lot of people that act exactly like that.
As for Brian being a mary-sue who cares? One way or another the creators ideology is going to show through. Plus if he really is a mary-sue then Seth must at least realize how pretentious he can be. Watch the episode Dark Pascual mentioned.
Meh
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:34PM
Product Placement at 7:04PM, Jan. 15, 2010
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Dark Pascual
Have to admit that one of the most satisfying moments on Family Guy was when Quagmire teared Brian a new one.
Ok. That's something I might like to see.
shirkersama
Watch the episode Dark Pascual mentioned.
I would but I have no idea what it's called.
Those were my two cents.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
Dark Pascual at 7:38PM, Jan. 15, 2010
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This is the clip (audio only)…



It's just…amazing…
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:07PM
skoolmunkee at 1:10PM, Jan. 16, 2010
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I was never a big fan of Family Guy in the first place. The only times I've seen it are ones where I'm with someone who was a huge fan, and they made me watch them because they were sure I would love them (I didn't. They were okay.)

I also have to admit I stopped watching simpsons around season 14 I think, I'm not exactly sure. I know when watching the season 12 set that came out recently, there were a couple I'd never seen before.

I did watch a simpsons episode earlier this week, but I have no idea how old it was. The premise annoyed me because it was another ‘how homer and marge met’ thing, only the twist was that they really met at a summer camp as kids and had a kiss but neither one knew it was the other because homer was using a different name, and marge burned her hair when ironing it so it was brown. Then stuff happened and they never met again and there was a heart-shaped rock that was broken in half, but it turns out they each kept half so awwwww. I mean, it wasn't a bad story, and some of the jokes were funny- but it made me wonder how many ways they can have homer and marge meeting and falling in love.

There was one really hilarious joke in it though. Marge is mad at Homer for being an idiot (again), and he says something like, “Marge, I know I've done a lot of things that have hurt this family. That time I bought the gun and then hid it from you, that time I lost our money at the dog track, and that time I ruined Lisa's wedding in the future…. you remember that one right?”

That one line pretty much redeemed the whole episode because it reminded me that the Simpsons never takes itself too seriously and it's just trying to entertain. It was like when Ned had his breakdown and called out a number of the simpsons characters for being one-dimensional. They're happy to parody themselves if it's a good joke. Then again I'm about 6 seasons behind, so I dunno. :]


That is pretty weird that Apu's kids are aging when no one else is, though.
  IT'S OLD BATMAN
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:43PM
HippieVan at 5:53PM, Jan. 16, 2010
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I haven't watched The Simpsons in ages so it could very well be terrible these days, but I used to enjoy it. Was one of the very, very few decent shows we got without cable.

I never enjoyed Family Guy, though. The characters annoyed me and I just don't find it funny, never did. I'm not a big fan of outright crude humour so that's probably part of it.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 12:49PM
elektro at 10:56AM, Jan. 17, 2010
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I stopped watching TV a while ago, but I used to like both shows in some way or form. I stopped watching “The Simpsons” years ago because it just became stupid. However, I at least still have some respect and nostalgia for the old episodes, which I can't say the same for “Family Guy”.

“Family Guy”, I realized, has really piss-poor writing. Some people say this started after the show came back, but after watching some of the older episodes again, I realized it always had piss-poor writing. It relies too much on random cutaways, ancient pop culture references, and “jokes” that go on for too long. The thing is is that this writing has devolved more and more as time went on, to the point that they had a Conway Twitty performance take up 10 minutes of show because they ran out of ideas.

Also, I have to say that Seth Macfarlane sucks as a writer. All of his shows are exactly the same: the adventures of one guy and his “crazy” family and friends. When Matt Groening made “Futurama”, it tried to deviate from “The Simpsons” so that it wasn't the same scenario. “Family Guy”, “American Dad”, and “The Cleavland Show” are all interchangeable, which means that's the only thing Seth can write.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:21PM
The Gravekeeper at 10:44AM, Feb. 2, 2010
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Man, I haven't actually sat down to watch TV in years. But yeah, I used to watch both. I think around season 10 The Simpsons started running out of ideas and since they'd pretty well done everything you could with the premise…well, yeah…

I stopped watching Family Guy around when they decided to make Stewie the token stereotypical gay guy and Brian became Macfarlane's mouthpiece. That, and in my opinion, they started to lose focus on the difference between a parody of a popcultural phenomenon and an homage to it. But then, humour is very much subjective and I know there are lots of people out there who still think both shows are great. I just didn't find either to be particularly funny anymore and if I can't find anything entertaining in an entertainment medium, I tune out.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:14PM
Freegurt at 5:57PM, Feb. 2, 2010
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I'm gonna have to say Family Guy. Yeah, the Simpsons has definitely fallen, but Family Guy has really sucked from the start.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:31PM
Splash Damage at 2:02PM, Feb. 3, 2010
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Seriously? I love both of them. I'm too distracted by how funny the shows actually are to worry about all this stuff you've thought up.

And that whole 2 hour block of TV is a ripoff of The Simpsons, as is almost every sitcom on right now. Family Guy has even had some of the exact same stuff in it: housewife with occasional gambling problem, stupid father, 3 kids, etc.

Both shows show things their own way. Family Guy is clearly the more tasteless, but both are good. And tasteless isn't always bad. It's pretty much what comedy is based on anyway.

You can't possibly sit through a whole episode and not laugh at anything. Why are you watching it otherwise?

But if you just want me to answer the question, I like Fam Guy more, so the Simpsons would be worse. Don't get rid of either one, scrap American Dad or the Cleveland Show if you have that kind of power.


And they did the Conway Twitty thing 3 times, only once was more than 10 seconds. It is their worst “joke”, get over it.
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