There are broad “Star Wars” parodies, and then there are insider-y “Star Wars” parodies, and then there’s a near-perfect mix of the two: The “Family Guy” episode “Blue Harvest,” which aired 10 years ago today. According to the DVD’s bonus features, the project came about when Lucasfilm approved all of “Family Guy’s” “Star Wars” parodies and Seth MacFarlane and company figured why not ask if they could do a whole episode?
A year ago, I announced that the lineup of new fall shows was the worst in two decades, and although I ended up liking (and now mourning, since they were canceled) “Almost Human” and “Super Fun Night,” I think my prognostication was accurate. Now I’m here to say that the fall of 2014 looks worse. The good news is that, aside from “Almost Human,” the networks’ axes fell lightly, so a decent number of favorites will return. Here are my picks for three new shows to check out, along with a few returning shows of note:
With the awesome news earlier this week that AMC changed its mind about “The Killing,” which it canceled a few months ago but has now resurrected for a third season (to air later this year), I thought I’d take a look at a few notable resurrected (or un-canceled, if you prefer) series through the years.
Seth MacFarlane probably had the idea for “Blue Harvest” kicking around in his head for a while, and when it became an actual episode of “Family Guy” in 2007, he probably thought, “Wow, we really did a ‘Family Guy’ ‘Star Wars’ parody.” Some of the giddy excitement was still intact for the “Empire Strikes Back”-themed sequel, “Something, Something, Something Dark Side” (2009), but all the fun is gone for the “Return of the Jedi” parody, “It’s a Trap!”
Here’s what I’ll be watching for on my top 10 returning fall shows, listed in order of airdate. All times are Central.
Last week, “The Simpsons” was the clear winner in the laugh tally against “The Cleveland Show” and “Family Guy.” I can’t say that every week, but I can say it often enough to make a case that “The Simpsons” still has plenty of laughs left in the tank.
Although two shows on this list are much missed and a third (“Dollhouse”) is on its way out, 2009 was generally a year when TV networks got smarter about marketing.
After watching “Family Guy’s” “Star Wars” parody in 2007, I had “Time of My Life” stuck in my head. After watching its “Empire Strikes Back” parody, which hit DVD on Tuesday, I have that old Juicy Fruit commercial jingle stuck in my head. That right there is an improvement.
First, my top 10 entertainers. These are the people (and one fictional robot) who put a smile on my face in every project they tackled.
There’s a nice scene in the pilot episode of “The Cleveland Show” (7:30 p.m. Central Sundays on Fox) where Peter, Quagmire, Joe and the “Family Guy” gang gather around to say goodbye to spinoff-bound Cleveland Brown. Peter hugs Cleveland, and of course, Quagmire says something sexual in the background, but basically it’s a normal farewell scene.