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Family Guy - Rich Old Stewie - Review

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This week's episode takes place some time in the future (though it's never revealed exactly when). Stewie (who just looks like a gray-haired baby) is revealed to be quite successful, even receiving a lifetime achievement award for creating something called the Wipeless Dump. Just as he's giving an acceptance speech, Brian walks in (who is apparently ageless because of a pill Stewie created and snuck into his food). Back at Stewie's house, Brian asks why Stewie left the family and he reveals that he just couldn't be what they wanted him to be. Brian insists he must return home, as Peter is now dying.

First stop on the way home is to pick up Chris. Stewie did not get along with Chris in their later years. He now lives in squaller somewhere in the desert. Next stop is to pick up Meg, who now tests bulletproof vests for a living. These two clearly lived up to their potential.

Finally, they arrive in Quahog to find an upgraded version of the town they remember (though still featuring the same Weenie and the Butt DJ morning show). They run into Quagmire, who looks more or less the same, but now only talks about ice cream and Cleveland, who has been on the phone on hold with United Airlines for years. They arrive home to find Lois and and a dying Peter, who is suffering from severe diabetes after the opening of several ice cream shops in town (and apparently they're all good). Peter asks Stewie to help the family when he dies and he promises that they will be taken care of.

Per Peter's wishes, Stewie uses his money to fix up the Griffin house, which has become run down over the years. As Peter realizes he's slipping away, he sees a white light and all of the actors who appeared on Family Guy and passed away. Peter passes and Stewie announces he will get his own affairs in order and transfer his money to the family to assist them, as he promised. As he leaves, the rest of the family stands over Peter's body crying, then laughing only to reveal that Peter has not died and the entire plan was a ruse set up by Brian to get Stewie's money. Stewie reveals he knew about the scam all along and turned on the gas stove, blowing up the entire house and the family. In the end, it is revealed that the entire episode is Stewie's imagination while staring at an old man Halloween costume.

A true Family Guy fan and pop culture fan will appreciate this episode. Several classic film references are used, including the opening sequence inspired by Citizen Kane and the end sequence inspired by The Usual Suspects. Faithful Family Guy viewers will enjoy Easter egg-like classic references, like Conway Twitty, Surfin' Bird, Stewie's "damn you vile woman" catchphrases, and Weenie and the Butt. At this point in Family Guy's existence, I believe the show isn't looking to grab new viewers, but rewarding existing fans with jokes that pay off for long-time fans. They aren't trying to develop the characters, but rather exploit our favorite aspects of what we know about them already. This might sound like a criticism but it's really not. Family Guy, for better or worse, is what it is and fans will certainly enjoy a nostalgia heavy episode from time to time.

What did you think? Leave a comment below!

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