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Family Guy - Peter Griffin: Best Bits Uncovered (DVD)

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Genre: Television / Suitable for 12 years and over / DVD released 2008-10-20 at Twentieth Century Fox / Features of the DVD: PAL

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      14.06.2012 11:50
      Very helpful



      Average collection of DVDs which makes a poor value purchase

      I'm quite bad for re-watching programmes many times, and Family Guy is one of those that I go back to on a regular basis. It's humour and lack of great plot complexity makes it a great programme to watch in the background while doing other things, such as studying and review writing in my case, as well as it being enjoyable to pay your full attention to. This DVD contains some of the protagonist's, Peter Griffin, 'best' episodes, which I will review for you today.

      == Family Guy ==

      Family Guy is a cartoon series made by Seth MacFarlane, who also made American Dad. Family Guy has become famous throughout many parts of the world for its satirical comedy and occasional downright offensiveness, and it is a show that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Many people have called it a cheap copy of The Simpsons, and whereas I agree that if it weren't for The Simpsons, then Family Guy would probably not exist, but that doesn't mean that they are not very different from each other and are aimed at a different audience. Whereas The Simpsons is predominately a show for children that can also be enjoyed by adults, Family Guy is more a show for adults that can be enjoyed by teenagers and children.

      Family Guy is about an American family living in Quahog, Rhode Island in the present day. The main character, Peter, is the father of the family, and his frequent bouts of stupidly and bizarre actions make for stress and trouble for his family, but entertainment for the viewer. His wife, Lois, is a beautiful housewife, who despite having several small jobs throughout the show, spends most of her time at home. They have three children: Meg, the older teenager, who is unfortunately fairly ugly and is Peter and Lois's least favourite child; Chris, a younger teenager, who is a lot like his father yet entertaining in his own way; and Stewie, the diabolic one year old baby hell bent on killing his mother and taking over the world, and who also speaks with a standard English accent, despite his age and nationality. The family is completed by Brian, the dog, who can talk and walk on his hind legs, and is the most well-educated and sensible one in the family, and who has been in love with Lois for many years. Like many other cartoon series, despite the show now being in its seventh series, the characters have not aged at all since its beginning, though there are occasional flashbacks to the past. Despite now being very popular, Family Guy was cancelled after its second series several years ago, but was brought back due to impressive DVD sales, and now is going strong and shows no sign of stopping.

      == Peter Griffin - Best Bits Exposed ==

      This DVD contains four episodes: "Let's go to the Hop", "E.Peterbus Unum", "Mr.Griffin goes to Washington" and "PTV". Despite the fact that the tenth series is currently on television in the USA, these episodes all come from the first four series (by the way that the Americans label the series). Since the programme seems to have got better with each passing series, this is somewhat of a shame, but as this DVD was released in 2008 a lot of the more recent episodes could obviously not have been included.

      == The Episodes ==

      Nevertheless, these are four enjoyable episodes of Family Guy. The first, 'Let's Go to the Hop', involves Peter posing as a teenager and going back to High School in order to encourage pupils to stop licking the backs of toads to get high. This is a good episode but it definitely has an early episode feel to it and I can't say that it makes my unwritten favourites list. However, the second episode, 'E. Peterbus Unum', is one of the ones that I enjoy the most from the second series of the show and it's one that I'm glad made the cut for this DVD. Due to a bizarre abnormality, the Griffin family discover that their house is actually not part of the United States, and so Peter creates his own country. This is a well done episode which is enjoyable despite a very unrealistic storyline.

      'Mr Griffin Goes to Washington' is the third episode on the DVD, and I have to say that I'm not a massive fan of it. It involves Peter having to promote cigarettes to politicians in Washington DC for one reason or another, and although there are some good jokes and lines, I can't say that it's an episode that I particularly love. The final episode, 'PTV', on the other hand, is one that I do really enjoy. It came at the start of Series Five in the UK (half way through the American fourth series), which is when I felt the series started to get quite a bit better. This episode is a good comment on censorship, and sees the Griffins setting up their own TV channel after the American censorship body takes all the enjoyment out of normal television.

      == The DVD in general ==

      Regardless of the quality of the episodes on this DVD, I have to say that there's not a great amount of point in buying it if you're a fan of Family Guy. If you like the programme, you would be better off buying the full series sets instead of these four isolated episodes. The only reason that I would say this DVD would be worth a purchase is the fact that a digital copy is included, which means that you can upload the episodes to your computer and then transfer them to a handheld device to watch them. This means that you could watch these episodes on your phone, which I have to say is something I enjoy being able to do. While most of the time I'm happy to watch things on my laptop, so watching things online or from the DVD is fine, it is nice to have something to watch on your phone when you're on long bus or train journeys, and cartoons are ideal for this as the small screen size doesn't affect your enjoyment too much.

      == Conclusion ==

      In short, I wouldn't necessarily recommend buying this DVD. Firstly, I only particularly like two out of the four episodes included, and on that basis alone I would be unlikely to recommend it too highly. Secondly, all these episodes are available as part of the series box sets, which are better value and make more sense for fans of the programme. Thirdly, at £5.95 (Amazon), it's fairly expensive for what you get at around £1.50 per episode. If you really want these four episodes digitally so you can watch them without having the DVD, then it is technically cheaper than downloading each episode from iTunes (at £1.89 each), but if you're not mad on all these episodes then there really isn't too much point.

      In short, the two great episodes and a digital copy make this an alright DVD, but the two not so great episodes and its price make it a poor purchase choice.


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