There is such a thing as going too far. Fox has announced that it won't air an upcoming “Family Guy” episode on abortion. The Emmy-nominated animated series has made a history of offending. Even in an overwhelmingly positive piece about the show, ABC's Martin Bashir called it “often base, insulting and blasphemous.”
According to TV Guide, Fox won't broadcast next season's episode entitled “Partial Terms of Endearment.” The network still supports “the producers' right to make the episode and distribute it in whatever way they want.”
So fans may still be able to get a hold of the undoubtedly sensitive treatment of abortion by the show that brought them “jokes made at the expense of paraplegics, the deaf, pedophilia, bestiality, AIDS,” as Bill Weir said during a “Nightline” segment in April. That broadcast was a love note to show creator and writer Seth MacFarlane and left out some of its most offensive material including an 11-way orgy and a gay-hating Jesus Christ.
MacFarlane unveiled the news about the episode at Comic-con, where he complained about the network reaction. “20th Century Fox, as always, allowed us to produce the episode and then said, 'You know what? We're scared to f--king death of this,'” MacFarlane said to the Hollywood Reporter.
The liberal MacFarlane, who earns $100 million for the show, has regularly bashed such conservatives as Sarah Palin. One character, Stewie Griffin, dressed in a Nazi outfit and wore a McCain/Palin button. But during ABC's program, Weir showed a list of topics “Family Guy” tried to avoid including: “Blacks,” “Gays,” “Jews,” and “Persians.”
To MacFarlane's annoyance, the show has been much criticized by conservative groups such as Parents Television Council. “It's not like television is a God-given right. You hear the Parents Television Council raving about "Family Guy" did this, nobody is forcing you to watch this show. They say is this taste? No, it's not, it's terrible taste.”
The program is “is the first animated program in nearly 50 years to land a best comedy series nomination,” wrote the Hollywood Reporter, following "The Flintstones" in 1961.