For a show where nearly every everything is impermanent - from the death of a main character to that memory of that time we went to that museum/ fought that chicken/ etc - one of Family Guy's only real constants is the fact that everyone hates Meg.
But as Family Guy Season 12 moves to a close, the show seems to have decided, after over a decade of testing everyone else's limits, that its own boundaries are the ones worth pushing.
Which is how we ended up with Family Guy Season 12 Episode 19, a half hour devoted to Peter finally warming up to Meg.
Part of the joke that animates the core of Family Guy is the fact that, if real families acted as snippy and snipey as most sitcom families do, it wouldn't be cute - it would be an emotional nightmare of hostility and dysfunction (paging Modern Family!).
Meg's role on the show - literally lower in everyone's esteem than the family dog - seemed to exist primarily to drive home this point about "cute" sitcom family dynamics, especially on programs where a child is depicted as dumb or a loser (again, paging Modern Family... what is wrong with those people?).
But just because it made a decent point, doesn't mean it was fun to watch - and the regular doses of Meg torture on this show always left me feeling squeamish.
Which is why, though it mostly lacked the barbed-wire snap of the Family Guy quotes from the season's best episodes, it was one of the year's most enjoyable to watch... especially that unexpectedly revealing aside about how Peter accidentally fell into fatherhood and an adult life of mediocrity.
Of course, the Family Guy universe is all about a constantly re-setting clock and carrying nothing over from episode to episode. Which is kind of a relief - a world where Meg was always beloved, there was no Griffin family whipping boy would be too much.
But one episode? That was just right.
What did you think of Meg and Peter's newfound closesness?
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