21st Nov2013

‘Family Guy: Season Twelve’ DVD Review

by Phil Wheat

Stars: Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Seth Green, Mila Kunis | Created by Seth MacFarlane

family-guy

In this bloody marvellous assortment of 23 original Family Guy episodes, Peter tries to prove he’s a British Royal Family guy, Quagmire tries to get giggity with Meg, and Brian and Stewie are beside themselves when they travel back in time to the show’s pilot episode. It’s a hilarious blast to the past packed with celebrity guest voices, including Cate Blanchett, Ricky Gervais, Ellen Page and Ryan Reynolds!

The twelfth season of Family Guy, well I say say season 12 but if you’re familiar with the DVD situation here in the UK (some of the longer seasons were split into two “seasons” by Fox UK), this isn’t actually season 12 but actually season ten! And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. This particular season is one of the strongest in recent years, managing to walk the very fine line between low-brow humour and bad taste (recent seasons have crossed way over to bad taste territory – although I’m not complaining, it’s still bloody hilarious). This season also sees the creators play with the origins of the show in one of the best episodes of the series ever, Back to the Pilot, which sees Stewie and Brian time travel to the pilot episode and integrate themselves into the storyline that opened the series.

Season Twelve also houses the fantastic Family Guy Viewer Mail #2 episode which sees the show animate viewers “story” suggestions, including one conceit that sees Family Guy re-imagined as a show called Chap of the Manor, replete with the usual British clichés: bad teeth, bad weather and the different meaning of the word ‘fag’ in the UK… It’s this badly-toothed “Chap of the Manor” cast that adorn the cover of this seasons DVD too. As usual for Family Guy this season features a wealth of guest stars including Ricky Gervais, Ryan Reynolds, James Woods and Cate Blanchett.

Family Guy: Season Twelve doesn’t re-invent the wheel but it is one of the stronger “seasons” of the show which will no doubt please fans of the long-running series. Will this year find new fans? Probably not. But it goes a long, long way to please hardcore Family Guy aficionados.

Special Features on this release include deleted scenes, looking back to the Pilot featurette, scene animatic from “Seahorse Seashell Party” with side-by-side commentary, full episode animatic from “Back to the Pilot”, fishin’ around with Ricky Gervais, audio commentary on select episodes, audio outtakes with Ricky Gervais, Ron MacFarlane reads viewer mail, and scene animatic from “Family Guy viewer mail # 2″ with side-by-side commentary.

Family Guy: Season Twelve is out now on DVD from Twentieth Century Fox.

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