REVIEW: AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – SEASON 5

Ming-Na Wen, Henry Simmons, Clark Gregg, Iain De Caestecker, Natalia Cordova-Buckley, Chloe Bennet, and Elizabeth Henstridge in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)

Starring

Clark Gregg (Captain Marvel)
Ming-Na Wen (Stargate: Universe)
Chloe Bennet (Nashville)
Iain De Caestecker (Filth)
Elizabeth Henstridge (Reach Me)
Henry Simmons (Taxi)
Natalia Cordova-Buckley (Bates Motel)

Jeff Ward in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Jeff Ward (Plus One)
Joel Stoffer (Death Ring)
Eve Harlow (Heroes Reborn)
Dominic Rains (Jinn)
Florence Faivre (The Expanse)
Pruitt Taylor Vince (13 Sins)
Coy Stewart (Devil’s Whisper)
Catherine Dent (21 Grams)
Lola Glaudini (That Awkward Moment)
Dove Cameron (Descendants)
Brian Patrick Wade (The Big Bang Theory)
Briana Venskus (Let’s be Cops)
Maximilian Osinski (In Time)
Spencer Treat Clark (Glass)
Peter Mensah (Spartacus)
Adrian Pasdar (Heroes)
Nick Blood (Trollied)
J. August Richards (Angel)
Zach McGowan (The Scorpion King 5)
Reed Diamond (Bones)
Ruth Negga (Preacher)
David Conrad (Roswell)
Derek Mears (Swamp Thing)
Rya Kihlstedt (Home Alone 3)
Patrick Fabian (Better, Call Saul)
Willow Hale (The Ones)
Joel David Moore (Julia X)
Patrick Warburton (Family Guy)
Jake Busey (Starship Troopers)
Alyssa Jirrels (Alexa & Katie)
Gabriel Hogan (Heartland)
Craig Parker (Reign)
Raquel Gardner (The Boy Next Door)

Dominic Rains and Elizabeth Henstridge in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has done the impossible. It went from one of the most throwaway action dramas in recent history with season one to one of the most memorable. Over the course of five long years, the series has re-invented itself, and slowly forged a capable band of misfits that are worth watching week after week.Henry Simmons, Clark Gregg, Eve Harlow, and Michelle Toh in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)It was somewhere around season three that I started truly enjoying the show, and by the time the artificial intelligence-driven LMD arc hit in 2017, I was hooked. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has the power to do what basically no Marvel film (with few exceptions) has done to date: make us laugh and cry in the same short span. Clark Gregg, S.H.I.E.L.D. star Agent Coulson always said that people should give the show time to grow, and while I’d argue four years is far too long of a wait, it’s worth investing in at this point. Season five mostly carries that legacy upon its back with a few missteps.Rya Kihlstedt and Dominic Rains in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)While I’ve grown fond of S.H.I.E.L.D. it’s very easy to poke Swiss cheese-sized holes into it. The writers still don’t seem to know how to handle Yo-Yo, the Inhuman that can run so fast that it seemingly stops time, only to return to her original location. They created a figurative monster, one that could basically end every conflict before it starts, and they’ve had to come up with weird ways to curb her power, some of which are incredibly hokey. They’re also constantly wandering aimlessly with her character arc, putting much of the burden of her budding personality onto her partner, Mack — one of the brightest parts of the show.Florence Faivre in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)The lack of John Hannah and Mallory Jansen, two of the strongest parts of last season, is felt, but others, whether it’s newcomers or old friends like Adrian Pasdar, have stepped up. Really though, the trophies should go to the principal cast, who are stuck together like a family for this long despite being on the bubble every year. Ming-Na Wen is one of the most underrated action performers on TV right now, and Chloe Bennet managed to transform Skye into the formidable Daisy mostly on her own, evolving and learning alongside of the show with charisma and relatable flaws to boot.Ming-Na Wen, Clark Gregg, and Willow Hale in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)I miss the smaller focused arcs of the past few seasons, but this year S.H.I.E.L.D. has mostly settled on two acts: the future, and a lead into Infinity War. The former was a very bold and tricky maneuver, and I think they pulled it off. For a while, there S.H.I.E.L.D. pivoted into a bleak sci-fi operation, more so than it ever has been in the past, with some of its darkest sections to date.Ming-Na Wen and Clark Gregg in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)The thing about the future portion of this season is that you never really know what’s going to happen. Coupled with an ominous theme bad things were always piling onto the crew, to the point where you really felt that they had no chance of making it out alive. By the end of it, when most of them do, it feels like their actions still have weight to them, something that was wonderfully communicated in the previous season. It’s not so much cheesy callbacks as it is genuine character development, as the team works to make this pseudo-MCU world one worth exploring. It’s also nice to see Marvel throw S.H.I.E.L.D. a bone, giving them at least one worthy villain and the entire Kree race to work with.Ming-Na Wen, Clark Gregg, and Chloe Bennet in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)Its second act isn’t nearly as strong, sometimes focusing far too much on Hydra (a concept that’s been touched on nearly every season now to mixed success), it eventually culminates in a worthwhile showdown with one of the most formidable foes yet with actual consequences. Is S.H.I.E.L.D., or the Marvel universe completely done with Hydra? Probably not, but for now it seems like new problems are on the horizon.Dove Cameron in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)Ultimately, season five of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ends with at least one twist and several turns. It’s beautifully filmed as a series finale just in case they didn’t get that one last renewal (which they recently did), and despite the truncated action scenes that still show how little of a priority S.H.I.E.L.D. is for ABC, it more than gets the job done for a network TV show.

REVIEW: THE BATMAN – SEASON 2

 

 

Main Cast

Rino Romano (Spaceballs: TAS)
Alastair Duncan (Providence)
Ming-Na Wen (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Kevin Michael Richardson (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)

The Batman (2004)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Gina Gershon (Red Heat)
Tom Kenny (Spongebob Squarepants)
Robert Englund (A Nightmare on Elm Street)
Clancy Brown (Highlander)
Jason Marsden (Young Justice)
Adam West (Family Guy)
Ron Perlman (Hellboy)
Peter MacNicol (Veep)
Steve Harris (The Rock)
Frank Gorshin (60’s Batman)
Daran Norris (Veornica Mars)
Patrick Warburton (Family Guy)
Michael Massee (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Kevin Grevioux (Underworld)
Mitch Pileggi (Stargate: Atlantis)

The Batman (2004)

With this season, the producers opted to play mix-and-match with baddies: Catwoman and Ragdoll, Catwoman and Penguin, Penguin and Man-Bat, Penguin and Joker, Penguin and Joker and Riddler, Mr. Freeze and Firefly. The Catwoman episodes work much better; the series’ take on the Selina Kyle character is as refreshing as has ever been in the decades of Batman tales. She’s one of the few multifaceted characters in this uncomplicated series, working somewhere between heroine and villainess, assisted by clever writing and a commendable vocal performance from Gina Gershon.Kevin Michael Richardson in The Batman (2004)Other episodes manage to shake the series’ problems and find a sturdy balance between fast-paced action and inventive plotting. The introductory adventure with the Riddler (here designed as some sort of Marilyn Manson wannabe) makes for a rollicking quest; an episode that takes Batman literally into the mind of the Joker allows for a fresh take on some overly well-worn cartoon material; a sinister Halloween tale about “swamp zombie” Solomon Grundy’s mythic return makes for ripping holiday viewing. These episodes all show the grand potential of this series. Consider the season’s best episode, “Meltdown,” which provides a return for Clay Face, last seen in season one’s finale. There’s a lot that happens in this episode character-wise, all of it both thrilling and quite emotionally touching.The Batman (2004)In order to make the show more friendly to the notion of reruns, the producers avoid any serious episode-to-episode continuity. Instead, we see ideas that slowly grow – Detective Bennett’s evolution as a character in season one (and slightly in season two), Detective Yin’s secret partnership with Batman in season two – in tiny chunks over the course of a dozen or so episodes. The good news is that these seemingly unimportant arcs do get a payoff in the season finales. In its favor, the series does showcase some incredible animation; “The Batman” remains a genuine treat for the eyes.

REVIEW: THE ORVILLE – SEASON 2

Scott Grimes, Penny Johnson Jerald, Seth MacFarlane, Peter Macon, Adrianne Palicki, J. Lee, Mark Jackson, and Halston Sage in The Orville (2017)

Starring

Seth MacFarlane (Sing)

Adrianne Palicki (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)

Penny Johsnon Jerald (Star Trek: DS9)

Scott Grimes (American Dad)

Peter Macon (Shameless)

Halston Sage (Goosebumps)

J. Lee (Family Guy)

Mark Jackson (The Royal Today)
Jessica Szohr (Piranha 3D)

Seth MacFarlane and Adrianne Palicki in The Orville (2017)

Recurring / Notable Guest Cast

Will Sasso (Mom)
Mike Henry (The Cleveland Show)
Chris Johnson (The Vampire Diaries)
Jason Alexander (Shallow Hal)
Rachael MacFarlane (American Dad)
Chad L. Coleman (Arrow)
Lesley Fera (Pretty Little Liars)
Candice King (The Vampire Diaries)
Robert Picardo (Star Trek: Voyager)
John Billingsley (Star Trek: Enterprise)
Kerry O’Malley (Annabelle: Creation)
Patrick Warburton (Ted)
Molly Hagan (No Good Nick)
Norm MacDonald (Dr. Dolittle)
Michaela McManus (SEAL Team)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
Ted Danson (The Good Place)
John Rubinstein (Angel)
Kevin Daniels (Atypical)
Wren T. Brown (Whoopi)
Bruce Willis (Glass)
Nick Chinlund (Training Day)
Mackenzie Astin (The Magicians)
Leighton Meester (The Roommate)
Tim Russ (Star Trek: Voyager)
Sarah Scott (The Artist)
F. Murray Abraham (Amadeus)
Rena Owen (Siren)
Kelly Hu (Arrow)
Tony Todd (Candyman)
Marina Sirtis (Star Trek: TNG)

The Orville has really surprised me in how great it has become. Already at Season 2, the show has totally found itself. I was skeptical at first I remember… thinking, meh, comedy in space? Yeah that’s been done before, and it’s failed. But while the show has comedic elements, I don’t really think I would classify it as a comedy sci-fi as much as I would a sci-fi built on a comedic base which somehow successfully delivers complex science fiction ideas with sometimes very serious overtones.Seth MacFarlane in The Orville (2017)While it does not take itself seriously at all in the broad sense, it actually does to a degree in other areas. It explores complex philosophical topics. It delivers nail biting action sequences. It has a sense of humor that’s really casual and easy to digest, and sometimes awkward but overall positive. Perhaps the best thing about the Orville are the characters. They are all quite fascinating, and I feel that they are explored in a way that brings depth and keeps me wanting to know more about them and follow them on their journey. I think that while it is largely influenced by Star Trek the next generation, the world it explores seems fresh and interesting.Penny Johnson Jerald and Mark Jackson in The Orville (2017)The storytelling is episodic so you can enjoy one show and one show only, but there are several threads that weave their way through multiple episodes. Again, the show really succeeds here in being episodic yet really glued together as a complete whole. They didn’t spare budget too… in Season two, you can clearly see they’ve gone all out in the special effects budget. While it is ‘made for TV’ quality, it’s very good ‘made for TV’ quality.Seth MacFarlane and J. Lee in The Orville (2017)Overall, I would recommend this series with great enthusiasm to anyone who loves science fiction. Orville, while heavily influenced by Star Trek, has become its own thing… a unique blend that just works. Watch it and enjoy!

REVIEW: HOODWINKED

CAST

Anne Hathaway (The Dark Knight Rises)
Glenn Close (Mars Attacks)
James Belushi (Red Heat)
Patrick Warburton (Ted)
Anthony Anderson (Scream 4)
David Ogden Stiers (Stargate: Atlantis)
Xzibit (XXX 2)
Chazz Palminteri (Analyze This)
Andy Dick (Road Trip)
Ken Marino (Veronica Mars)
Tom Kenny (The Super Hero Squad Show)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)
Tara Strong (Sabrina Down Under)
Kelly Stables (Two and a Half Men)

Little Red Riding Hood discovers that the Big Bad Wolf has disguised himself as Granny, just as the axe-wielding woodsman bursts through the window, startling everyone. The police quickly arrive, and Red, Wolf, Granny and the Woodsman are questioned by detective Nicky Flippers about the events leading up to the incident.
Red explains that she was delivering goodies for her grandmother when she discovered a threat from the mysterious Goodie Bandit. Hoping to save her Granny’s recipes, she embarked upon a journey to take them to the top of a nearby mountain where her Granny lives. On her way, she encountered the Wolf, who asked her a series of suspicious questions. She managed to escape, and eventually reached her Granny’s house; however she found the Wolf already waiting in ambush.
What at first seems to be an open-and-shut case becomes confused though, once it is learned that the Wolf is an investigative reporter. He reveals that he was searching for a lead on the identity of the Goodie Bandit, and had reason to believe that Granny and Red were the culprits. Locating Red, he questioned her, hoping to get to the bottom of the mystery. When Red escaped, he headed for her Granny’s house and arriving first, went undercover, hoping to trick her into giving him the evidence he needed.
When questioned, the Woodsman reveals that he is in fact an aspiring actor who was only trying out for the part of a woodsman in a commercial. After his schnitzel truck was robbed by the Goodie Bandit, he went out into the woods to get in character for his role, and spent the rest of the day felling trees. An especially large tree rolled after him, and pushed him through the window of Granny’s home. The investigation then turns to Granny, who reveals that, unbeknownst to her family, she is an extreme sports enthusiast. During a ski race earlier that day, she was attacked by the opposing team, but got away safely after learning that they were hired by the Goodie Bandit.
Despondent over her Granny’s lack of honesty, Red wanders off alone. Meanwhile, Nicky Flippers realizes that the one commonality between all four stories was a bunny named Boingo, and concludes that he is the Goodie Bandit. However, Boingo has already sneaked into the home and stolen Granny’s recipes. Red sees Boingo and follows him to his hideout at a cable car station, but the police pursue him in the wrong direction. Granny, the Wolf, and the Woodsman manage to locate Boingo as he is explaining his evil scheme to Red. Boingo plans to add an addictive substance to the stolen recipes, and then explode the forest, making way for new real estate for expanding his business.
The Wolf and the Woodsman go undercover to distract Boingo as Granny sneaks into his lair, but open conflict ensues. Boingo sends a bound and gagged Red down the mountain in a cable car loaded with explosives, and Granny goes after her, with Boingo and his henchmen in pursuit. Red manages to free herself, and escapes with Granny, while the police, who have been located by the Wolf’s assistant Twitchy, are waiting at the bottom of the mountain to arrest Boingo and his henchmen. Some time later, the Woodsman finds success as part of a yodeling troupe, and Red, Granny, the Wolf, and Twitchy are enlisted by Nicky Flippers to join a crime solving organization called Happily Ever After Agency.
Anne Hathaway in Hoodwinked! (2005)
This is a great alternative to the usual fairy storys. A well known tale with a twist. Older and younger children will enjoy the who done it storyline and adults will enjoy the humour. Animation seems old fashioned now but will not detract from the enjoyment.

REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – PARTIAL TERMS OF ENDEARMENT

CAST (VOICES)

Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
Seth Green (IT)
Mila Kunis (Black Swan)
Mike Henry (Ted)
Patrick Warburton (Scream 3)
Alexandra Breckenridge (The Walking Dead)
Phil LaMarr (Free Enterprise)
Will Sasso (Anger Management)
Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: TNG)
Michael York (Logans Run)

While attending her college reunion at Salve Regina University with Peter, Lois spots her old roommate, Naomi Robinson, with whom she had a brief lesbian relationship in college. Peter is shocked but excited to discover that Lois was bisexual in college. Naomi indicates that she would like to discuss a proposal of some importance with them at their home. Assuming that he will participate in a threesome with Lois and Naomi, Peter sends Chris, Meg, Stewie and Brian out of the house. After Naomi arrives, she introduces her husband, Dale. Peter still expects that they will now be participating in an orgy, and tries to seduce the three of them while dressed in various costumes. When they clear the air to a dismayed Peter that they’re not there for sex, Naomi and Dale tell Lois and Peter they’ve had trouble conceiving and ask Lois to be a surrogate mother for them, leading Lois to think the matter over.
The next morning, as the family is eating breakfast, Lois reveals her intention to become a surrogate mother for Naomi and Dale, causing Peter to become upset at the thought of her being pregnant for nine months. Despite this, Lois decides to go to Dr. Hartman to have the in vitro fertilization performed, enduring more of Dr. Hartman’s shtick involving celebrity crossbreeds and having a tribe of bush men implant the egg with blowguns. A pregnancy test comes back positive the next day, and a furious Peter attempts to cause Lois to have a miscarriage before ultimately confronting her about the pregnancy. While she continues asserting her intention to provide a child to Naomi and Dale, Quahog 5 News suddenly reveals that Naomi and Dale died in a car crash. Devastated by the announcement, Lois questions whether she should have an abortion or continue with the pregnancy and put the baby up for adoption.
In an attempt to come to a decision, Lois and Peter decide to visit the local family-planning center, and ultimately decide to abort the embryo. However, as Peter exits the center he encounters an anti-abortion rally, where he is shown an anti-abortion video by one of the protesters. The video causes him to reconsider about aborting the unborn baby. Returning home, Lois continues to advocate her right to choose, while Peter now attempts to argue the unborn child’s right to life and whether Lois has the responsibility of carrying it to term. At their wits’ end, the two decide to discuss the matter, once and for all. The next day, Lois talks with the family about “the wonderful new member of the Griffin family”, but then, after a few seconds of silence, Peter turns to the camera and says to the audience “We had the abortion”, promptly ending the episode
MV5BMTU0NzA2Mzk2M15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNzkyMDg4NA@@._V1_SX1331_CR0,0,1331,999_AL_
I think the censors were a bit heavy-handed to ban this episode from TV, I’ve seen more risque things said on The View! Having said that, the episode is very funny with Seth MacFarlane at his satirical and uninhibited best!! The extras are also worth watching – in particular, the Seth and Alex (almost live) Comedy Show, which had me in stitches!

REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – IT’S A TRAP

CAST (VOICES)

Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
Seth Green (IT)
Mila Kunis (Black Swan)
Mike Henry (Ted)
Jennifer Tilly (Curse of Chucky)
Patrick Warburton (Scream 3)
Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad)
Michael Dorn (Star Trek: TNG)
Carrie Fisher (Star Wars)
Anne Hathaway (The Dark Knight Rises)
Marty Hart (Love Affair)
Patrick Stewart (American Dad)
Adam West (60s Batman)

 The Griffin family experience another power outage, forcing them to reluctantly go through Return of the Jedi.Rather than setting up the plot, the opening crawl states that Fox insisted Seth MacFarlane complete the trilogy. It makes reference to his then-upcoming film Ted in the sentence, “But Fox suddenly had dollar signs in their eyes, and they said, ‘Seth, if you don’t do Jedi, we’re not gonna let you leave to go direct your movie.”Darth Vader (Stewie) arrives on the new, partially constructed Death Star, where Imperial Moff Jerjerrod (Roger from American Dad!) informs him that the new battle station no longer has the design flaws of its predecessor, except for a hole that could destroy the station if fired upon. Vader warns Moff Jerjerrod that they should fix that problem before the Emperor (Carter) arrives.On Tatooine, R2-D2 (Cleveland) and C-3PO (Quagmire) find Jabba the Hutt (Joe)’s palace in order to initiate a plan to save Han Solo (Peter), still frozen in carbonite for posterity. Leia (Lois) unfreezes Han, who releases a long fart. Their reunion is cut short when Jabba captures her and she is outfitted provocatively, and shackled by Jabba’s side. Han, meanwhile, is thrown into a prison cell with Chewbacca (Brian), who got caught eating out of Jabba’s garbage.Luke (Chris) arrives at the palace and attempts to bargain for the release of his friends. Jabba opens a trap door and Luke falls into a pit where he battles and kills the Rancor (Rush Limbaugh). Afterwards, Jabba orders Luke and his friends to be eaten by the Sarlaac (Meg). During the execution ceremony, Luke gives Jabba one last chance to release him and his friends. When Jabba refuses, Luke initiates an assault on Jabba’s crew with the help of Lando Calrissian (Mort), disguised as one of Jabba’s henchmen. Many of Jabba’s men are knocked into the Sarlaac including Boba Fett (Ernie the Giant Chicken) (according to a dying guard, Boba just fell off). Distracted by the carnage, Leia chokes Jabba using her slave chains while her fellow rebels commandeer a transport ship. Luke, Leia, Han, Chewie, Lando, R2-D2, and C-3PO all fly to safety.Luke and R2-D2 fly to Dagobah so Luke can finish his training with Yoda (Carl) while the others rejoin the rebel fleet. On Dagobah, Yoda explains the final part of training is to face Vader. In his dying words, Yoda reveals that Luke has a sibling. The spirit of Obi-Wan Kenobi (Herbert) appears to Luke and further explains that his sibling is Princess Leia, “the only damn woman in the galaxy.” The rebels begin planning an assault on the new Death Star. Admiral Ackbar (Klaus from American Dad!) explains that the plan will be the same as the last time they destroyed the Death Star, except now they must first destroy a shield generator located on the forest moon of Endor.In order to land on the forest moon of Endor, Han uses a stolen Imperial ship and old access code to sneak past the Empire’s blockade. Vader allows them passage on to the moon, knowing Luke is aboard the ship. When they reach the moon’s surface, the rebels are spotted by Imperial soldiers. The soldiers attempt to retreat to warn others of the rebel attack, but Luke and Leia stop them in an elaborate bicycle chase sequence. Separated from the others, Leia is befriended by Wicket the Ewok (Tim from The Cleveland Show). Luke, Han, Chewie and the droids fall into an Ewok trap while searching for Leia. They are captured and brought to the village where Leia is being housed. The Ewoks believe C-3PO is a god and begin to worship him. Luke tells Princess Leia they are siblings, but Leia claims to have already known that. She then introduces a Conway Twitty cutaway.Following Yoda’s advice, Luke surrenders to Vader in order to confront him. Vader tries to convince Luke to turn to the dark side. Luke refuses, but is delighted to find out that it is taco night. The two meet with the Emperor, who reveals that Luke’s friends are walking into a trap on the forest moon. When this revelation fails to anger Luke, the Emperor begins to mock actor Seth Green (who voices Chris). Luke defends Green saying that he’s been in successful projects, only to have The Emperor saying the negative side of Green’s roles. Luke becomes enraged and begins dueling with Vader. Back on the forest moon, Han leads the rebels to the shield generator. Complaining about a lack of dark plot content, he forces the three technicians inside to dig their own graves with their helmets, then ordering one of them to stab his companion to death and wear his face. Before they can carry out Han’s disturbing orders, however, the company is ambushed. The Ewoks help the rebels escape from the Imperial troops and destroy the shield generator, while Lando and Nien Nunb (Rallo from The Cleveland Show) lead the attack on the Death Star.Luke finally subdues Vader after Seth Green is further mocked, but he refuses to execute him and join the dark side at the Emperor’s request. The Emperor then incapacitates Luke with his powerful Force lightning. Because Luke asks Vader politely for help, Vader gathers his remaining strength and kills the distracted Emperor by throwing him into the reactor core. Vader and Luke manage to flee the Death Star before Lando and his crew blow it up. Unfortunately, when Vader asks Luke to help him remove his mask (to “look on you with my own eyes”), Luke accidentally twists and breaks Vader’s neck. Everyone rendezvous back at the Ewok village to celebrate the rebels victory over the Empire. While the Ewoks kill the wounded Imperials, the spirits of Obi-Wan and Yoda appear to Luke, alongside the spirit of the redeemed Anakin Skywalker (Stewie), who angrily accuses Luke of murdering him and starts swearing at him.The Griffins’ power returns just as Peter concludes the story, Meg then asks Peter “What about the prequel trilogy?” with Peter suggesting that The Cleveland Show might do the prequels (though that show’s subsequent cancellation has made such parodies impossible). After that, Chris asks Peter another question about how come he says in the story that Seth Green is a douche. Peter answers saying that in his opinion that Green has done a lot of unsuccessful projects and that Green sucks. Chris retaliates with saying that he thinks Seth MacFarlane is a douche. Peter, Stewie and Brian (all voiced by MacFarlane) defend MacFarlane as a talented young man with fresh ideas and good humor. Chris tells the three in anger that he got the whole idea of Family Guy off The Simpsons, with Meg and Lois supporting Chris that MacFarlane “only brings ten new episodes of the show a year” and “we get it, he watched a lot of television in the ’80s” (a reference to the show’s many cutaway gags referencing 1980s television). The argument ends with Peter claiming that people will just remember the laughter, before the family looks awkwardly at each other.

Anyone who has enjoyed the previous chapters of this separate feature series will find more of the same here, and if you’re like me, you will only find that a good thing. Although I must say, it also helps to refresh your memory by watching the original Star Wars film before trying this to pick up the more subtle references!!

REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – SOMETHING, SOMETHING, SOMETHING DARKSIDE

CAST (VOICES)

Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
Seth Green (IT)
Mila Kunis (Black Swan)
Mike Henry (Ted)
Jennifer Tilly (Curse of Chucky)
Patrick Warburton (Scream 3)
James Caan (Las Vegas)
Phil LaMarr (Free Enterprise)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)
James Woods (Another Day In Paradise)

As the Griffin family is watching television, the power suddenly goes out, leading Peter to retell the story of The Empire Strikes Back.
After the “opening crawl” an Imperial Star Destroyer deploys a series of probe droids in search of the Rebel Alliance. One of the probe droids (Joe) lands on the ice planet Hoth, where the Rebels have set up a base. Rebel commander Luke Skywalker (Chris) is patrolling when he is attacked by a large wampa (Cookie Monster) and taken back to its lair. At the base, Han Solo (Peter) announces his intention to leave the Rebellion to Princess Leia (Lois) and Carlist Rieekan (Dr. Hartman), with Leia objecting to his decision, however she denies it when confronted, saying she would rather kiss George Takei. When he finds out that Luke has not yet returned, Han sets out on his “Dondon” to find him. Luke escapes the wampa lair and has a vision of his late mentor Obi-Wan Kenobi (Herbert), who tells him to go to the Dagobah system to learn the ways of the Force from Jedi Master Yoda, after offering him a bowl of Zima soup. Han quickly locates Luke, and the two are rescued soon after.
Soon after, the Empire discovers the Rebel base, and Darth Vader (Stewie) orders an attack. The Imperial fleet exits hyperspace too early, giving the Rebels time to evacuate the base while Luke leads his squadron of snowspeeders to hold off the Empire’s battalion of Imperial Walkers. Imperial stormtroopers break into the base, forcing Han to escape in the Millennium Falcon with Leia, C-3PO (Quagmire) and Chewbacca (Brian), while Luke escapes in his X-wing with R2-D2 (Cleveland), stopping to see R2’s niece’s violin recital. The Millennium Falcon enters an asteroid field and Han decides to dock inside a cave to repair the ship. They flee when they discover they have actually landed in the belly of a space slug (Meg). Meanwhile, Luke crash-lands in the swamps of Dagobah and finds Yoda (Carl) amid the foggy landscape. Yoda trains Luke, guiding him through a series of training exercises, including watching “sweet-ass DVD releases”, and a training montage that parodies Rocky IV.
family-guy-something-something-something-dark-side-20091223095413048-000Darth Vader is ordered by the Emperor (Carter) to capture Luke and turn him to the dark side of the Force. Vader recruits bounty hunters to track down and capture Luke’s friends, intending to use them as bait to trap Luke, including Raggedy Andy, whom he orders to leave. With the Millennium Falcon‍ ’s hyperdrive broken, Han and company escape by hiding amongst a field of disposed trash, but are tracked by Boba Fett (Ernie the Giant Chicken), after hitting a “space bum” collecting some of the garbage. Luke has a premonition that his friends are in danger and leaves Dagobah to save them, although he has not finished his Jedi training. Yoda initially doesn’t want him to go, but encourages it after Luke suggests Yoda fight Vader himself.
Han and the others go to Cloud City on the planet Bespin to obtain help from Han’s friend Lando Calrissian (Mort), “the only black guy in the galaxy”, only to be turned over to Darth Vader. Han willingly reveals the location of Luke and the Rebel base but is tortured by being forced to listen to Paula Cole’s “Where Have All the Cowboys Gone?”, as punishment for clogging a toilet on the 16th floor of Cloud City, which forced Vader to use the “little pig people’s” bathroom. Han is used to test a carbon freezing chamber Vader intends to use on Luke to take him to the Emperor. Leia professes her love to Han, but Han tells her to fuck off and is then frozen in carbonite for posterity. Lando later double-crosses the Empire, freeing Leia, Chewbacca and C-3PO, motivating the guards with a pizza party. Despite R2-D2 having sex with the combination lock, and subsequently being discovered by her husband, to get the door open, they are too late to stop Boba Fett from flying off with Han. Luke arrives at Cloud City and, after being briefly interrupted by Ryan Seacrest on American Idol, engages Vader in a lightsaber duel. Vader cuts off Luke’s right hand. With Luke cornered and defenseless, Vader goads Luke to join the dark side, revealing that he is his father. Luke casts himself into an air shaft and, after discovering that a worker has shoved his severed hand down his pants, ends up hanging on an antenna beneath the city, calling out to Ben, Leia, and Tom Selleck. Leia senses Luke’s call from within the Millennium Falcon and has him rescued. On board a Nebulon-B frigate, Luke is fitted with an artificial hand, but told to practice masturbating with a hot dog first, while Lando, dressed in Han’s clothes, sets off with Chewbacca on the Millennium Falcon to rescue Han. Before the story ends, Luke is angry because of the way the story ends. Then he receives a letter from Doc Brown, a reference to the ending of Back to the Future Part II.
In the Griffins’ home, the power returns as Peter finishes his story, only to get into another argument with Chris over Robot Chicken. Chris vows to not let Peter get his goat this time, but eventually storms off when Peter brings up Without a Paddle.
The empire strikes back has never been spoofed to such a high degree in my opinion. If you know the family guy characters and have seen the Star Wars movies, you will love this.