Family Guy Offensive

Posted by – May 17, 2010

No, really? In how many ways, exactly, besides all of them?

The only part I don’t understand is how fans of the show, who usually think the entirely tasteless, cruel humor is funny, are somehow outraged when the joke is on them.

Please don’t spend any more brain power on this one. Send your congressmembers or Speaker Pelosi another letter about ENDA instead, would you?

7 Comments on Family Guy Offensive

  1. Lucy says:

    Are you kidding me? 1) Are you really claiming that all of us who are outraged are fans of the show? 2) Are you telling trans people what we should be concerned about? I’m sure the answer to 2. is yes because you’ve shown you’re cool with policing trans people before, but I’m really curious what the answer to 1. is.

  2. helenboyd says:

    1) No. I was pointing out how odd I find it when fans of the show are outraged *only* when the offensive joke is about them & theirs.

    2) No. I’m saying that I think there there are more important things going on right now that have a very direct impact on trans people’s lives, particularly ENDA, which will help end discrimination in areas like employment & housing & stuff.

    3) I’m not interested in policing anyone, but I am interested in expressing my opinion. I was, as you might remember, very pissed off about TOTWK, because I expect better (probably stupidly) of Tribeca Film Fest & others within the LGBT, because they should be aware of how negative portrayals actually impact lives.

    That is, Family Guy is already LCD, so it’s not like it’s a huge surprise that they would handle trans stuff offensively. I’d rather try to convince those who should know better, & maybe have an investment in not being assholes, to listen.

    That is all.

  3. Betty says:

    Whenever I hear the “policing” argument I think, really? Policing? It’s hard for me to take the rest of it seriously because of it. I mean that with respect. I just start to think about how hyperbolic that statement is and I can’t focus on the rest of it because of it.

    I must have a different version of what comedy does at times than other people because the idea of Family Guy doing something really offensive with transpeople surprises me not in the least. As long as it’s equal opportunity bashing in the name of a joke I guess I don’t care.

    I don’t usually laugh either.

    I save that for when they go after some group I find ridiculous, like ex-gay people hiring luggage porters from rentboy.com. Now that’s funny. ;)

  4. Betty says:

    Expressing frustration with folks for getting more worked up and energized over a TeeVee show than working to make ENDA the best bill it could be is hardly telling people what to do. It’s an opinion.

    Also.

  5. Lisa Harney says:

    It’s a good thing I have three posts about ENDA, then – which, given my posting frequency, is pretty decent.

    I’m also not a fan of the show, nor do I give Family Guy a pass on everything else, but I don’t believe that every instance of Family Guy is equal opportunity bashing. This is one of those cases that comes across as a lot more mean-spirited than others. I also think that jokes centering around trans panic cross the line.

    Plus, I probably wouldn’t have posted anything at all if Seth McFarlane hadn’t said “It’s probably the most sympathetic portrayal of a transexual character that has ever been on television, dare I say.”

    It’s a fundamental attribution error to assume that people are getting more worked up about Family Guy. I’ve only seen one post shaming trans women for complaining about ENDA, and several about shaming trans women for complaining about Family Guy – and that kind of thing is guaranteed to create more heat than light. This whole Family Guy thing would’ve blown over days ago (and actually, it did blow over) if there weren’t so many people tripping over themselves to white knight their Family Guy fandom.

    When you get dogpiled by people telling you why you have no right to be annoyed, you’re probably going to look more annoyed about that than anything else just form sheer volume. But every post and comment about it is a snapshot, a moment, not a definitive recording of everything you’re thinking, saying, and doing. My calls to my representatives about ENDA are almost certainly not reflected in my post or any comments about Family Guy.

  6. Lisa Harney says:

    The white knighting and shaming comments are about discussions elsewhere, just so it’s clear I’m not talking about this post.

  7. helenboyd says:

    I should have clarified: I hate the show, don’t watch it, find it offensive not for its grossness, or shock value, but because neither of those things seem to be in service to anything at all. I like art that shocks, but Family Guy is just stupidity to me.

    Also to be clear: I wasn’t commenting on your post about it. I was commenting on the number of comments generated. People climb out of the woodwork to comment on something like this, & they did on our message boards too. I find that kind of depressing.

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