You could probably argue that, in the television world, there are two cartoons that appeal to adults that really dominate the category. One that’s been an iconic institution since 1989, and the other a decade later proved itself to be just as funny and just as smart. What would one do if these two television cartoon giants decided to do a crossover episode blowing your mind past anything it could possibly conceive? This dream came to fruition last week in a television special that was set to be a classic at its conception. But what if, if it was even possible, this episode ended up being a tragic disappointment? Unfortunately, tragic disappointment was reached in the form of the lackluster Simpsons-Family Guy crossover special: The Simpsons Guy. What could have had the potential to be a classic television crossover that could warm the hearts of millions and entice anyone who loves cartoons and humour turned out to be a pretty serious disappointment.
Its pinnacle was its first fifteen minutes, which, essentially, was half an episode of Family Guy. It starts with Peter getting a comic strip in the local paper. One offensive column enrages him so much that the Griffins decide to leave town. After some travel and a stop at a gas station, the Griffins get their car stolen. They go looking for help and find themselves in Springfield, the home of the Simpsons. The introductions between characters are, to be fair, laugh out loud funny. Seeing Peter meet Homer is a delight, and watching the Griffin-Simpson combination gets you set for what should have been an excellent hour.
The show descends into the unfunny after the introductions. You’re left with an empty storyline where the characters align: Bart with Stewie, Lisa with Meg, Homer with Peter. But nothing happens. The plot was obvious and almost seemed like it was written by an excited fan, who doesn’t know how to actually make things funny. Despite a strong start, you see a drop that leads to endless dissatisfaction, courtesy of lazy writers.
What some fans will love, but is ultimately just another careless plot point, is the chicken fight between Homer and Peter. Any fan of Family Guy knows about the infamous chicken fights between Peter and an actual chicken, and they’re usually quite funny, albeit a way to get away with not writing a full story. The chicken fights go on forever, which can be funny but tedious for a viewer. In an episode hyped as much as The Simpsons Guy, the inclusion of a ten minute chicken fight is almost an insult to the viewers, thinking they would rave about a crossover episode with the last section having essentially no content.
Although the show was disappointing, I hope the writers give it another go because the potential for a good episode exists and arguably isn’t even that difficult to pull off, even after this. Sadly, The Simpsons Guy is really not worth the watch.