Family Guy's latest episode in the US has addressed whether the show will stop making 'gay jokes'.
Back in January, executive producers Alec Sulkin and Rich Appel seemed to vaguely assure fans that those working on the show realised that making jokes at the expense of the LGBTQ+ community was "not acceptable" in 2019.
But now, a comment made by character Peter Griffin in Sunday night's episode (October 20) has got people wondering whether the duo's words at the time were actually a statement of intent or just a mere observation.
In 'Disney's The Reboot', the ever-meta show sees Peter (voiced by series creator Seth MacFarlane) attend a focus group in order to decide on a new direction for the series. After watching a scene that pokes fun at Peter's sexuality, one member says: "I thought I read you guys were phasing out gay jokes."
"That quote was taken out of context and widely misunderstood," Peter replies, which could only be taken as a reference to Sulkin and Appel's initial comments to TVLine about, well, phasing them out.
Back in January, when asked to clarify Peter's "In fairness, we've been trying to phase out the gay stuff" line from an earlier episode, Sulkin said: "If you look at a show from 2005 or 2006 and put it side by side with a show from 2018 or 2019, they're going to have a few differences.
"Some of the things we felt comfortable saying and joking about back then, we now understand is not acceptable."
"The climate is different, the culture is different and our views are different," Appel added. "They've been shaped by the reality around us, so I think the show has to shift and evolve in a lot of different ways."
So, are they actually going to "shift and evolve" the show, or – like Sunday's latest episode proved – are they just going to reference themselves doing that?
Family Guy airs on Comedy Central in the US and also on ITV2 in the UK.
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