Fox // 2010 // 463 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge Brett Cullum // May 25th, 2012
From the creator of Family Guy comes a man who will stop at nothing to protect his country.
American Dad follows the misadventures of CIA operative Stan Smith (voiced by creator Seth MacFarlane), the ultra conservative patriarch of a family that includes his put-upon middle-of-the-road wife (Wendy Schaal, The 'Burbs), rebellious liberal daughter (Rachel MacFarlane, Superman/Batman: Public Enemies), and lazy son (Scott Grimes, Band of Brothers). The twist is they live with an alien named Roger (also Seth MacFarlane) and Klaus (Dee Bradley Baker, Phineas and Ferb) the goldfish who has the brain of a German ski jumper. The series isn't so much a satire on Right Wing America as it is simply a twisted family sitcom. It differs from Family Guy, in that the show does not rely on cut away pop culture gags, but rather on character beats and odd situations.
Volume Seven includes nineteen episodes which make up the entire sixth season, including the 100th episode where daughter Hayley elopes with her hippie boyfriend Jeff, driving Stan over the Right Wing edge. Other episodes include Stan serving jury duty, son Steve walking in on his parents during their "romantic time," alien Roger dating Steve's best friend, and yet another Christmas classic to go with the Halloween and Thanksgiving episodes. We also get escaped serial killers, a does of Turkish amphetamines, white slavery, a doll that gets raped, the death of 100 characters, a pack of rabid wolves, and (of course) evil clones.
Presented in standard definition 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, Fox continues to offer up nice crisp transfers with bright colors and a respectable level of clarity. Audio options include full Dolby 5.1 Surround in English and simple 2.0 stereo in Spanish. The set claims to be uncensored, but all that means is the "F bomb" makes cameos every now and then. In terms of bonus features, we get deleted scenes, as well as crew commentaries (minus MacFarlane) on select episodes. The commentaries are tough to find, because they're not listed in the extras section, but instead found in the language selections submenu for each episode. There's also a featurette on the show's ComicCon 2010 panel, and a short look at incredibly excited guest star Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: The Next Generation).
I like American Dad because it relies on organic silly moments rather than machine gun fire pop culture references to get laughs. Though not as funny as Family Guy, it's more than engaging thanks to characters you grow to like. It never gets smart enough to be satire, but that's just fine with me.
Guilty of being likable enough to make me cheer for a man who puts the wing
in Right Wing.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (Spanish)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 463 Minutes
Release Year: 2010
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Deleted Scenes
* Official Site