Family Guy: 20 Greatest Hits

January 9, 2019 8 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

What do you do with a show that’s been cancelled, twice, and is now one of the jewels in your network’s crown? Well, I guess the best thing to do would be “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Those familiar with Family Guy likely know what I’m talking about. And if you don’t, it’s basically a more foul-mouthed version of The Simpson’s. Odds are you’ll like one or the other or in my case – both. Co-creator Seth MacFarlane provides many of the voices and is surrounded by a wealth of talent like Alex Borstein, Mila Kunis, Patrick Warburton and Seth Green.

While this isn’t a stand-alone season, there are about a season’s worth of full episodes on this three disc set. This is just a compilation of those episodes and, more to the point, the songs contained within. There are those who don’t like the show (and I would wonder why they’d read this review?), but speaking as someone who has no vocal talent whatsoever, some of these songs are pretty impressive. Not every song is covered, but the major ones are and I do have to say that it’s nice to have them all in one place.

Video: How’s it look?

I’m sure there’s a reason, but I can’t seem to find it. Fox issues a lot of their television shows (series) on DVD as opposed to the more standard-offering of Blu-ray. Maybe it’s a cost-cutting thing or maybe they’ve done market research that says more people will buy a DVD rather than a Blu-ray. Whatever the reason, I can say that the over the air broadcasts look superior to the way these look on DVD. They don’t look bad, but when you can watch episodes on network television that look better than a DVD set, things have to change!

That being said, the quality of the songs/performances/episodes vary from one to the other. There are some that are from the earlier days of the show when it was still drawn/broadcast in full-frame (1.33:1) and other, newer episodes with the standard 1.78:1 aspect ratio. This allows for a clean, crisp visual texture, so the show’s bright presence comes off in fine fashion. The Quahog atmosphere looks excellent, so the basic animation style carries well here. This is not always a very colorful show, but when needed, the hues have ample richness. Nevertheless, this one is all about the tunes, so don’t let the standard definition throw you.

Audio: How’s it sound?

I don’t have a whole lot to discuss in this department, since the show’s audio is basic and so is this presentation. There is no real power or depth to mention, outside of the music, which has a little presence at times. The Dolby Digital 5.1 mix is passable, but shows like this or The Simpson’s don’t really offer a lot in this department. The sound effects don’t amount to much, but all of the needed elements are on full showcase in these tracks. In other words, the background noises sound good, but don’t expect much beyond the basics. The real focus is on dialogue, so the clean and clear vocals found here are a welcome fixture in the mixes.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Admittedly, the only bona fide “supplement” on this disc is “300 Episodes, Two Cancellations and one Mural”, but there really is a lot of content here including 20 episodes. Here’s a breakdown by disc.

Disc One

  • Episodes
    • Road to Rhode Island
    • When You Wish Upon a Weinstein
    • Rain Wallows and Peter Swallows
    • The Cleveland-Loretta Quagmire
    • PTV
    • The Courtship of Stevie’s Father
    • Brian Sings and Swings
  • 300 Episodes, Two Cancellations and one Mural – This is a fifteen minute feature that’s footage of the “official” unveiling of the Family Guy mural on the side of a studio building. Or as Seth MacFarlane says “I’m so happy to have a Family Guy mural between a studio building and a Jewish Country Club. We’re treated to some footage of Fox TV executives as well as a speech by MacFarlane and others. That’s when you know you’ve arrived folks, a cartoon painted on the side of a building!
  • I Need a Jew – Lyric Video
  • Music Machine – Click on the name of the song and you’ll be taken to the spot in the episode where it’s performed.
    • The Road to Rhode Island Song
    • I Need a Jew
    • You’ve Got a Lot to See
    • You have AIDS
    • The FCC Song
    • Peanut Butter Jelly Time
    • Somewhere That’s Green
    • When We Swing

Disc Two

  • Episodes
    • Patriot Games
    • Sibling Rivalry
    • Deep Throats
    • Peter’s Two Dads
    • Airport ‘07
    • Play it Again, Brian
    • I Dream of Jesus
  • Drunken Irish Dad – Lyric Video
  • Music Machine
    • Shipoopi
    • Vascectomy
    • Noble Indian Chief
    • Drunken Irish Dad
    • Prom Night Dumpster Baby
    • All I really Need is the Boy
    • The Spirit of Massachusetts – Parts I and II
    • Surfin’ Bird – Parts I and II

Disc Three

  • Episodes
    • Episode 420
    • Road to the Multiverse
    • Road to the North Pole
    • Friends of Peter G.
    • In Harmony’s Way
    • Candy Quahog Marshmallow!
  • It’s a Wonderful Day for Pie – Lyric Video
  • Music Machine
    • A Bag of Weed
    • It’s a Wonderful Day for Pie
    • All I Really Want for Christmas
    • Christmastime is Killing Us
    • Mr. Booze
    • Alyssa Milano Hot
    • Melted Cheese
    • Twins
    • Broken Rubber
    • Credit Card Debt
    • Poop in Strange Places
    • Butter on a Pop Tart
    • Florida Song
    • Brush your teeth at Work
    • Train on the Water
    • The Waitress is Prettier than my Wife
    • Parents are Gross
    • Candy Quahog Marshmallow

The Bottom Line

It’s puzzling how and why Fox continues to support a format that made its debut in 1997. However no amount of whining by me will change what’s in my hands. Fans of the show will know these songs by heart (and there are lyric videos for a trio of the songs), but for the rest it’s one to easily skip. As I said above, it is nice to have all of the songs/showtunes in one place; not that I’ll have a need to break the collection out when I can watch them on YouTube and in better quality.

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