REVIEW: THE ORVILLE – SEASON 1

CAST

Seth MacFarlane (Ted)
Adrianne Palicki (Agents of SHIELD)
Penny Johnson Jerald (Star Trek: DS9)
Scott Grimes (American Dad)
Peter Macon (Bosch)
Halston Sage (Goosbumps)
J. Lee (Family Guy)
Mark Jackson (The Royal Today)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Victor Garber (Legends of Tomorrow)
Chad Coleman (Arrow)
Norm Macdonald (Dr. Dolittle)
Larry Joe Campbell (Hall PAss)
Rachael MacFarlane (American Dad)
Ron Canada (Cinderella Man)
Kelly Hu (X-Men 2)
Brian George (The Big Bang Theory)
Jeffrey Tambor (Operation: Endgame)
Holland Taylor (Two and a Half Men)
Rena Owen (Nemesis Game)
Robert Knepper (Prison Break)
Liam Neeson (A Million Ways To Die In The West)
Charlize Theron (Atomic Blonde)
James Horan (Scanner Cop)
Michaela McManus (The Vampire Diaries)
Steven Culp (Desperate Houswives)
Brian Thompsons (Hired To Kill)
Rob Lowe (The West Wing)
Ralpg Garman (Ted)
Mike Henry (The Cleveland Show)
Robert Picardo (Star Trek: Voyager)
Molly Hagan (Ringmaster)
Joel Swetow (Charmed)
Jonathan Adams (Bones)
Lamont Thompson (Mike & Molly)
Giorgia Whigham (Son of Zorn)
Loren Lester (Batman: TAS)

The Orville is set on the titular U.S.S. Orville (ECV-197), a mid-level exploratory space vessel in the Planetary Union, a 25th-century interstellar alliance of Earth and many other planets.I have been a huge fan of Seth Macfarlane’s work, especially family guy. So iI knew I would  love The Orville. While it can be considered a parody of Star Trek, it embraces this niche and performs excellently. I’ve seen all of Star Trek more than once. I’ve waiting with bated breath for a new Star Trek series that would satisfy my longing desires for engaging space fairing adventures involving the Alliance. But what The Orville taught me about my love for Star Trek, is that I didn’t just want some more cookie cutter Star Trek – recycling familiar family names and phrases to keep die hard fans in the loop. What I was really waiting for, was a show that wanted of me, all of my emotions in where I was genuinely engaged and invested into the chemistry of the on screen character’s individual alien culture and it’s affect on their personal lives. From Isaac discovering what it means to be human (while still being hilariously and “legendarily racist”) to Bortus’ decision to not alter the gender of his first born child. The Orville made me laugh, watch anxiously in fear and anticipation, and expanded my imagination to what infinite possibilities await in the universe,an idea easy to enhance considering the abundance of cultures and lifestyles that exist even on a single planet.There was something magical about The Orville that was able to recapture that childlike wonder I experienced when I watched series like Star Trek, Firefly, Farscape, etc. It’s a feeling that truly makes me appreciate the awesome gravity of how endless existence is, and it’s what makes Sci-Fi attract my interest so much. With a second Season announced this show has proven its got staying power.

 

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CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: THE CLEVELAND SHOW: THE CHRISTMAS EPISODES

A CLEVELAND BROWN CHRISTMAS

CAST
Mike henry (Family Guy)
Sanaa Lathan (Blade)
Kevin Michael Richardson (Lilo & Stitch)
Nia Long (Boiler Room)
Seth MacFarlane (Ted)
Aseem Batra (Scrubs)
Arianna Huffington (John Q)
John Sudeikis (We’re The Millers)
Reegan Gomez-Preston (Jerry Maguire)
Jamie Kennedy (Son of The Mask)
David Lynch (Twin Peaks)
GUEST CAST
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
Stockard Channing (Practical Magic)
Will Forte (The Lego Movie)
Cleveland and the family go to pick out a Christmas tree at Lester’s lot. Cleveland has his eye on a nice large tree but Rallo insists on a smaller tree. Cleveland finds out that Donna and the family have been lying to Rallo, telling him the reason Robert can’t come around during the holidays is that he is an FBI agent. When Cleveland fills in as Santa Claus at his office holiday party, he has one too many egg nogs and lets the truth slip about Rallo’s father. Rallo fails to connect that it was Cleveland posing as Santa and takes out his hostility on figures of Santa. With Rallo’s admiration for his dad destroyed, Cleveland tries to reconnect father and son in an attempt to save Rallo’s Christmas spirit. He finds Robert at SKANXXX a strip club. Robert doesn’t care at first but later has a change of heart. He shows up at the house dressed as Santa and tells Rallo another lie…he hasn’t been around because he is the real Santa, making Rallo’s Christmas a happy one.
Meanwhile, Roberta becomes an animal rights activist and tries to save a reindeer. When she sets it free, it goes on a rampage.
The first Xmas episode was a good decent comedy hour, and probably out of all the Cleveland show Christmas episodes it’s the best.

MURRAY CHRISTMAS

GUEST CAST
Edward Asner (Elf)
Carl Reiner (Oceans Eleven)
Craig Robinson (Pineapple Express)
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
While performing in a class choir at the Stoolbend Rest Home, Rallo observes one of the residents not paying attention and gets into a verbal battle of wits with him. When the home supervisor suggests they get to know each other better, Rallo’s teacher forces him to spend the weekend at a retirement home to get to know the senior citizens during the holidays, Murray teaches him about Hanukkah. In an attempt to rekindle Murray’s holiday spirit, Rallo helps him escape, but when his new friend’s health begins to suffer, Rallo has to decide whether or not to bring Murray back to the home.
Meanwhile, Cleveland Jr. sees a picture of his dad with a black eye at Christmas and finds out how his grandfather spends “Boxing Day”, by forcing his son to box with him for his gifts to toughen him up. Donna trains Cleveland for a boxing match against his father, which ends with Cleveland landing a surprise blow that triggers a heart attack in Freight Train. When Donna finds Murray’s teeth in the dishwasher Rallo comes clean, which hurts Murray’s feelings and trust. When Cleveland goes to see his father, Freight Train is forced to admit he is getting old and regrets not spending more time with Cleveland even if in the form of more beatings. Rallo decides to go back to the home and free Murray and the rest of the residents for Christmas with the help of Cleveland Jr. and Cleveland. In addition to Christmas at the Brown home with the rest home residents and Cleveland’s parents, Rallo also treats Murray to the last night of Hanukkah
The second xmas episode shows us how other religions celebrate the holidays which was a nice touch. It also introduces us to Murray who would become a recurring character throughout the shows run.

DIE SEMI-HARD

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GUEST CAST
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
John Slattery (Ant-Man)
To help pass time while posing in a holiday nativity scene, Cleveland tells his family his own version of one of his favorite holiday stories, “Die Hard”. After detective Cleveland Brown flies into Los Angeles to meet his wife at her job at Waterman International, he tells his limo driver Rallo about some of his marriage troubles while he hopes to reconcile during the office Christmas party. Meeting with his wife, he takes off his shoes and tries to be romantic but Donna resists his charms and returns to the party alone. Meanwhile, a group of thieves led by Tim posing as terrorists take the party guests hostage and separate Mr. Waterman in order to gain access to the Waterman International vault.
Cleveland tosses his shoes out the window over a nearby poser line when he hears gunshots and arrives as Mr. Waterman is killed. Hearing noise from Cleveland, Tim sends Kendra out to investigate where she is killed by Cleveland. As the terrorists discover Kendra’s body, they hear Cleveland trying to use his radio to call for police and start shooting. Police dispatcher Roberta sends officer Cleveland Brown, Jr. to investigate. As Cleveland dispatches another of the terrorists and escapes into an air shaft, Jr. arrives but is told by a guy that looks like Huey Lewis but is really one of the terrorists that all is well and starts to leave. To get his attention, Cleveland throws a janitor out the window onto Jr. squad car. Jr. frantically backs away as the terrorists fire on his car. As police surround the building, Cleveland taunts the terrorists but slips and gives away his location. As Robert Tubbs struggle to crack the vault, the gift exchange at the party hostages goes on. But when Donny’s gift turns out to be a small package of golf balls in a large box he is shot too. As Cleveland and Jr. exchange banter over the radio, Tim arrives but is taken by surprise. Tim manages to come up with a name on the office list and fools Cleveland who gives him a gun which her turns of Cleveland. Cleveland manages to distract him momentarily and takes out another of the henchmen as he escapes. As Cleveland hides behind a wall of glass and keeps Tim and Lester pinned down, Tim orders Lester to shoot out the glass after noticing Cleveland’s bare feet. Cleveland is forced to retreat through the glass picking up several shards in the process. Despite picking out much of the glass, Cleveland leaves bloody footprints behind him.
Two FBI agents arrive and order the building power to be cut off which results in the vault opening. The terrorists take Cleveland’s friend Holt hostage but kill him after they learn that they also hold Cleveland’s wife Donna. As Cleveland ponders his next move, Lester manages to sneak up on him but is hung from a chain by Cleveland after telling him that the hostages have been moved to the roof with explosives. Arriving on the roof, Cleveland orders everyone off but the FBI agents in a helicopter mistake Cleveland for one of the terrorists and open fire on him. Tim orders the roof blow as Cleveland ties a fire hose around his waist and jumps from the rooftop. The blast engulfs the helicopter as Cleveland shoots his way back into the building. As Cleveland catches Tim and his last henchman, Tim grams Donna and holds her at gunpoint forcing Cleveland to drop his gun. As Tim thinks he’s won, Cleveland draws a second gun taped to his back and shoots Tim and the henchman, forcing Tim through the window. Tim grabs Donna’s wig and holds her by the hair. Cleveland makes Donna undo her wig as Tim falls to his death. Outside as the surviving hostages are freed, Donna and Cleveland reconcile. Lester springs up shooting at the two to be killed by Jr. who also shoots Walt noting that he shoots kids.The scene returns to the nativity scene as only Jr. and Roberta remain awake. Jr. enthusiastically asks about a sequel to be told they will see what the internet has to say first.
Not a huge fan of this special as its just Cleveland doing Die hard, it has some fun moments but as a Christmas special it fails.

‘TIS THE SEASON TO BE SORRY

GUEST CAST
David Costabile (Lincoln)
When the kids make their Christmas lists, Donna insists that they help by donating old goods. Roberta refuses and insists on getting a job to buy her own gifts. While helping out at the mission, Cleveland finds that the residents eat better food than he gets at home and decides to pass himself off as homeless, telling Donna that he is volunteering at the shelter. He succeeds despite being recognized by Tim and makes the acquaintance of several of the residents where he spins a wild yarn about how he got into his predicament. They help him out and take him under their wings. Cleveland finds that Donna nominated his as a special angel due to his work at the shelter and his con job is exposed on television. Cleveland becomes a pariah in town and tries to publicly apologize but makes things worse. As he wanders back to the shelter, he finds that the residents still accept him but the food has returned to the usual low standards. He sets off with the residents to make others aware of the situation at Grundle’s.
At Grundle’s Department Store, Roberta gets hired as a skimply-dressed elf and Kendra demands to get upgraded from Mrs. Claus to the role of Santa but is passed over in favor of Arch. Kendra finds a sympathetic ear in Roberta but when she points her to a job as Santa at a laundromat, Kendra turns her down, wanting the job at Grundle’s. Arch uses his regular charm as Santa, telling the kids what they’ll get regardless of what they want. Kendra recalls a special present Roberta once wanted and Roberta makes Kendra a special sleigh out of her scooter. But due to being depressed over not getting her dream job, Kendra gives up on Christmas.
When Arch bails on the job and the kids are left without gifts, Kendra gets back her Christmas spirit and takes on the challenge of providing Christmas although she has trouble getting to the store, sliding backwards into the snow and losing the Christmas gifts in the process. Cleveland and the homeless find Kendra frozen in the snow and help her get to the store. Roberta and her co-workers complain about continuing to have to wear their costumes and quit, tossing Mr. Grundle their shorts. Without the presents, Kendra tells the kids at the store to help themselves to the store goods, figuring that they can’t all be arrested. Cleveland tries to apologize again but points out that everyone ignores the homeless after the holidays and strikes a chord, making Donna happy.
A much better special than season 3’s with a funny story merges some good heart warming stuff too. Cleveland song of I’ll be Homeless this Christmas was a funny song. This would be the last Christmas episode for the show as Season 4 became the final season.

CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: AMEIRCAN DAD – THE CHRISTMAS EPISODES – PART 2

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CAST (voices)

Seth MacFarlane (Ted)
Wendy Schaal (Small Soldiers)
Scott Grimes (Critters)
Rachael MacFarlane (The Batman)
Dee Bradley Baker (Son of Batman)
Eddie Kaye Thomas (Carrie 2)
Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: TNG)
Jeff Fischer (Jennifer’s Body)
Curtis Armstrong (Return to The Batcave)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)

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GIFTED ME LIBERTY

5616cde899678During the annual “evil Santa” CIA gift exchange, Bullock becomes upset when it is revealed that someone did not bring a gift to the exchange and puts Stan in charge of discovering exactly who that person was. Following orders, Stan roughs up his co-workers until no one is left and comes to the realization that he was the one who forgot. Fearing Bullock’s wrath, he employs Roger in persona as a detective who abuses CIA resources and advises Stan to lie by simply choosing the next agent to be killed in the line of duty. However, when his choice turns out to leave a wife and family behind who will be cut off from his pension by Bullock in revenge, Stan wants to tell the truth but is dissuaded by Roger. Vowing to protect the family, Stan tries a second job but finds the work pays too poorly, so he tries for quicker cash by setting out to rob a bank, but ends up selling both sperm and blood until he is left in a near-death state. Giving up, he informs Bullock of the truth, who goes easy on him, but reveals an entire year has passed as Stan is shown that another “evil Santa” is underway as Roger puzzles over the broadcast month of the episode.acecroutonMeanwhile, after buying a vintage handkerchief used by a renowned ladies man, Steve scores a hot date for the Harvest Dance, only to find she has used him to get past her parents to really go out with her bad-boyfriend. But when other girls start to offer him cash to do the same for them, he latches on to a business opportunity, employing Klaus and Hayley to staff his “dating” service. But during a dance, all of the girls turn up sick and at least one of the bad-boys has died. The center for disease control raids the dance and finds Steve loaded with germs from the handkerchief, but is immune due to his sexual immaturity. For an episode that has two very simple plots in description, it’s exciting to see not only how much they do with both of them, but also the unexpected territory they push them into. As this season of American Dad! begins to wind down, it appears like it’ll actually be finishing as strong as it began

 

CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: AMERICAN DAD – THE CHRISTMAS EPISODES – PART 1

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CAST (voices)

Seth MacFarlane (Ted)
Wendy Schaal (Small Soldiers)
Scott Grimes (Critters)
Rachael MacFarlane (The Batman)
Dee Bradley Baker (Son of Batman)
Eddie Kaye Thomas (Carrie 2)
Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: TNG)
Jeff Fischer (Jennifer’s Body)
Curtis Armstrong (Return to The Batcave)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)

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THE BEST CHRISTMAS STORY NEVER

Guest voices
Lisa Kudrow (Easy A)
The episode begins with the family in the town square. Roger is horribly depressed and drunk complaining that since landing on Earth sixty years ago he’s accomplished almost nothing; Stan, however, is overjoyed until he finds out that the Christmas tree has been banned due to its religious nature. He is further dismayed when more signs of secularism occur–the clerks at the mall aren’t allowed to say “Merry Christmas” and the town goes so far as to rename the annual attacker, the Christmas Rapist, the “Holiday Rapist.” Stan blames the whole thing on Jane Fonda–his logic being that her going to North Vietnam revitalized the “dying” hippie movement and that, since yesterday’s hippies grew up to be modern liberals, modern liberalism is her fault. Stan finally becomes so enraged that he destroys the tree and the presents; the kids and Roger are horribly sad and Francine is so mad she banishes him to the couch.
That night, Stan is visited by the Ghost of Christmas Past (a former Tooth Fairy named Michelle) who takes him back to 1970. Stan, however, runs away from her in an effort to find Jane Fonda so he can assassinate her thus changing the future. The Ghost, unsure where he has gone, goes back to the present to get Francine; the two then return to the past to find Stan.
Stan has tracked Fonda down to the set of Klute where he finds out that Donald Sutherland was the one who led her to politics and changes his plan to assassinate him instead. He finds Sutherland at a Hollywood party where he happens to meet Martin Scorsese and convinces him to give up drugs. Francine and Michelle then grab him and bring him back to the present where they are shocked to discover the street desolate with Soviet tanks patrolling. They eventually figure out what has happened–by getting Scorsese off drugs they stopped him from ever making the movie Taxi Driver; as a result John Hinckley, Jr. never saw Jodie Foster in the movie and became obsessed with her which resulted in him never trying to assassinate Ronald Reagan. This dented his popularity in the 1984 election as the near-death experience made him appear stronger; in the new reality he thus lost to Walter Mondale who then surrendered the country to the Soviet Union just 47 days into his Presidency. The group then goes back to attempt to fix what Stan did.
Stan decides to make the movie himself; however, he quickly alienates Robert De Niro and decides to make the movie with John Wayne instead. Stan and Francine follow Hinckley into a movie theater and watch the new Taxi Driver behind him. After the movie is over, Stan asks Hinckley what he thought of the movie and he says it was alright. Francine then asks him if he thinks Jodie Foster is attractive and he reacts very badly to this pointing out that she is 12-years-old. This means that the future remains unchanged. The Ghost then transports them to March 30, 1981, and tells Stan that the only way to fix the future is if he shoots Reagan instead. Stan is shocked; he is unable to shoot his favorite president. Francine reminds him how much he wanted Christmas and points out that it wouldn’t exist at all if the Soviets ruled; Stan replies that he doesn’t care about trees and presents but would be happy as long as he had Francine and the kids. The Ghost then informs him that in the alternate future Francine and Stan may never meet meaning also that Steve and Hayley won’t exist. Stan then decides that he must shoot Reagan and shoots him. Just as he does, the two suddenly transport back into their bed on Christmas morning, 2006.
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The two are relieved to find out that history is back to normal and, after fixing the presents and tree, the family enjoys a happy Christmas. The Ghost appears to Stan one last time to give him a gift for saving her job–a brand new gun she says she bought the previous night. When Stan asks how that is possible, as the Brady Bill requires a week long waiting period, she informs him that he only shot Reagan and not Brady meaning that buying guns is incredibly easy. Stan rejoices that he changed the future for the better (in his own eyes) and says “this is the best Christmas ever.” In a subplot, Stan buys a “Best of Disco” cassette for Roger. When he goes back in time to 1970, the tape falls out of his jacket and is found by Roger. Playing it to executives, Roger becomes fabulously wealthy by inventing the Disco era. However, in 1981, disco becomes “dead” and Roger loses everything. Upon returning to the future, Roger still talks of his time as the inventor of disco and the episode ends with that timeline still in effect.
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A great first Christmas episode for American Dad, Lisa Kudrow is brilliant thou when her character returns she does not voice it.

 THE MOST ADEQUATE CHRISTMAS EVER

Guest Voices
Paget Brewster (Now You Know)
John DiMaggio (Futurama)
J.K. Simmons (Burn After Reading)
Jane Lynch (Role Models)
After Stan comes home from another dangerous mission, he finds that his family has decked the halls with boughs of holly and donned themselves with gay apparel, but just not to his satisfaction. He demands a grander Christmas starting with the search of a bigger and better tree in the forest. When his family has had enough, Stan powers on by himself, finds the perfect tree and meets an untimely end when it falls on him.
His soul ends up in Limbo, where an ice cream man tells him that he will get a ride to either Heaven or Hell. However, Stan believes that it’s not his time and demands a second chance. Reluctantly, the ice cream man takes him to a courthouse where he can prove he deserves one. Unfortunately, Stan is assigned to Michelle, a lawyer who has a bad relationship with her father, the judge, and didn’t earn her wings. The prosecution is Scott LaRose, who has won many cases, allowing him to become smaller and cuter. Scott proves that Stan does not deserve a second chance because of his stubborn and arrogant ego, as evidenced when he took a pregnant Francine to Africa against their doctor’s advice;a baboon help her give birth to Hayley. Michelle tries exonerating Stan by showing him accepting Steve’s advice to give his kidney to a homeless man. However, Scott shows the rest of the clip, revealing that it was all a dream. Stan’s appeal for resurrection is denied. Worse, Michelle informs him that his family, except Roger, will die of hypothermia because he took the car keys.
 With the court refusing to at least help his family, Stan pulls out his gun, only to learn that Earthly weapons have no power in Limbo. Therefore, he grabs a Heaven gun, which can kill anyone and kidnaps Michelle to takes him directly to God. Stealing a chariot and evading the Archangels, they make it to Heaven. Michelle tries sneaking Stan in as a German man but when he speaks English, it rouses St. Peter’s suspicions. When it seemed like Michelle turns on Stan, she knocks out St. Peter to help Stan. They then sneak into God’s mansion, where Jesus is having his annual birthday. While Michelle mingles amongst the crowd, having never received an invitation.
Stan eventually finds God’s study and pleads Him to save his family. God refuses his plea, so Stan puts the Heaven gun to his head. God asks Stan if he knows better than the Almighty, to which Stan admits that he doesn’t and consents to God’s judgement. God then reveals that this was all a test for Stan to show some humility and agrees to send him back to Earth, all because it’s Jesus’ birthday. Stan thanks God, before requesting that He give Michelle her wings in gratitude. Then suddenly, God then takes the Heaven gun and shoots Stan in the head. Next thing he knows, Stan is back at the beginning of the episode. Using the lessons he’s learned in Limbo, Stan agrees with his family that all their decoration are perfects. As the Smith family hugs, Roger notices Michelle fly down to watch.

American Dad Christmas episodes are always a highlight to watch, Paget Brewster takes over from Lisa Kudrow from this point on, it’s nice that there’s some continuity between the xmas episodes.

RAPTURE’S DELIGHT


Guest Voices
Paget Brewster (Now You Know)
Will forte (The Lego Movie)
Andy Samberg (Friends With Benefits)
Martin Mull (Sabrina: The Teenage Witch)
Tom kenny (The Batman)
Skyler Gisondo (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Stan is upset when he cannot find his family a good seat for a standing-room only Christmas Day church service. To allieviate this, Francine takes him to have sex with her in the closet. When they come out, everybody in the church has gone, with their clothes left behind. Upon exiting the church, Stan discovers that he, Roger, and Francine are among those left on Earth during the Rapture (Stan and Francine because they had sex in a holy place, and Roger because he wasn’t human to begin with), while Hayley and Steve have ascended. Francine becomes upset when Stan cares more about ascending into Heaven than being with her and leaves him; she soon meets Jesus Christ in his second coming and becomes his girlfriend.
Seven years pass and the war between Jesus and the Anti-Christ reduces the world to a post-apocalyptic wasteland, with the human race on the brink of extinction. The survivors have degenerated into savage bikers, militiamen, and prostitutes. Jesus travels by motorcycle to the war-torn city of Denver, Colorado and meets in a local bar with Stan, who has lost an eye and replaced one hand with a blade. Jesus convinces him to help rescue Francine, who has recently been captured by the Anti-Christ. Stan agrees to do so on the grounds that Jesus send him to Heaven afterwards. On their mission, they meet up with Roger, who for the past seven years has been trying to repair his spaceship in order to return to his home planet and escape the war. They get to the United Nations Building, where they find Francine bound in a manger.
Stan and Jesus meet with the Anti-Christ, depicted as an effeminate villain parodying The Riddler who claims to be the opposite of Jesus. When he tries to trap them, the container breaks apart; being the opposite of Jesus, he is a bad carpenter. After a drawn-out battle, Jesus jumps onto Anti’s back and breaks his neck. Anti survives and attempts to shoot Jesus but Stan takes the bullet for him, giving Jesus enough time to throw a cross-shaped shuriken into the Anti-Christ’s head, killing him. When Francine tears Stan’s shirt away to look at the wound, she sees that he has always kept their wedding rings, and he admits that he had in fact come to save Francine. He activates a bomb to destroy the lair and end the war once and for all. Francine tries to rescue him but Stan asks her to leave lest the explosion kill her too. Stan dies in the blast and is sent to heaven. When Michelle guides him to his own “personalized heaven”, Stan enters his home just the way it was at the beginning of the episode, the only difference being Klaus’ dead fish body being mounted on a plaque hanging on the wall.
American Dad’s version of the rapture is one of the best AD episodes of all time. Religious groups kicked off but it’s there lost.

FOR WHOM THE SLEIGH BELL TOLLS

Guest Voices
Clancy Brown (Highlander)
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Stan Smith continues to reject the idea that Jeff Fischer is now a member of the family despite Francine’s suggestion that he should be included in their family traditions. Despite Francine’s objections, Stan gives Steve an Ak-47 assault rifle for Christmas and Steve accidentally shoots a mall Santa. Steve, in turn, is shattered emotionally and swears never to pick up a weapon again. Meanwhile, Roger goes off in search of the strongest whiskey possible and he is directed to a moonshiner in the Chimdale Mountains, named Bob Todd, who teaches him his ways.
Stan convinces Steve to hide the body from Francine and try to find out whom the Santa was with his fingerprint, but his DNA is not in the CIA database. Stan dismisses this and doesn’t investigate further. Francine quickly discovers the body, and as the family buries the body; she chastises them for not letting her cut off the hands and smash the teeth out; much to their chagrin. The next day they receive threatening letters, stating that someone knows what they did and that they will be punished. They watch the news and discover that no one really feels like it is Christmas, as if someone killed Santa. Feeling a little doubt they then dig up the body and discover it is gone. When an elf appears and tells them that it was actually the real Santa that they buried and that he was recovered and rejuvenated in a Star Wars Bacta Tank at the North Pole and vows vengeance on the Smiths, they decide to take refuge with Roger in the moonshiner’s cabin where Bob Todd lives. Jeff arrives to spend the holiday with Hayley, much to Stan’s displeasure. However, Santa soon arrives since Jeff wrote a letter telling him where they would be staying. Bob Todd reveals that his airplane-house is also an armory, which includes an M60 machine gun, two RPKs and an M16 assault rifle, to fend off an attack of endless waves of armed elves, flying reindeer, and an enormous snowman (reminiscent of a Cave Troll from Lord Of The Rings) led by Santa. Francine snaps Steve out of his fears, ordering him to “pick up a gun this instant and send these toy makers to Hell!” and the family proceeds to defend themselves.
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Santa tries to convince Jeff to abandon the Smiths, recognizing that he was not involved in their plot to hide his body, and by offering a relic from The Golden Compass. Jeff walks to Santa’s side, but then turns on him and is able to pull Stan who was injured to safety. While Jeff takes care of Stan; Jeff says he thinks Stan is an ass. But, the two agree on their love for Hayley, causing Stan to see Jeff as a true member of the family. The family is almost overrun, until Santa and his army are forced to retreat because they only had until Christmas morning to get vengeance. Santa disappears, leaving behind a letter warning them that he will return next year to take his revenge and kill them, while the Smith family realizes that they have found a new Christmas tradition.
Another episode that shows American Dad knows how to do Christmas specials well. The fight against Santa and his elves was EPIC!.

SEASON’S BEATINGS

Guest Voices
Andy Samberg (Friends With Benefits)
Martin Mull (Sabrina: The Teenage Witch)
Stan hears of the church putting on the story of Christ at the mall and rushes to get the lead role, only to be told by Father Donovan that he is too fat. He is instead given the role of Santa Claus but when he finds out the Roger got the role of Christ attacks and beats him senseless. Shocked at the attack, church leaders around the world universally agree to kick Stan out of all religion. When Stan asks if there is any way to stay in the church, he is told it is almost impossible, given that the only three acceptable ways are to kill the anti-Christ, discover the Holy Grail, or donate large sums of money.Meanwhile, Jeff tries to talk Hayley into adopting a child. Hayley says no but Jeff adopts a child anyways and names him Nemo. Hayley at first is angry but is quickly charmed by Nemo. While Stan is watching Nemo, he discovers he bears the numerals 666 which is considered the mark of the beast and is convinced the child is the Anti-Christ. Stan gets Father Donovan to come see the marking and they agree to go to the orphanage where Nemo came from only to find it burned to the ground. as they search the remains of the orphanage, Father Donovan discovers Nemo’s birth papers. Nemo senses the Father’s discovery and causes the orphanage to collapse on him, severing his legs. Father Donovan is able to share that Nemo is indeed the son of Satan before he dies.
Stan, Roger and Jeff travel to the Vatican to obtain a set of sacred daggers to kill the anti-Christ. Although Stan is barred from entering, Roger and Jeff are able to enter the catacombs to search. Nemo sees them through the eyes of a rat and causes the catacombs to flood, washing Jeff away. Roger climbs out and finds the daggers and escapes with them after attacking a Cardinal. Roger and Stan return home to discover Francine putting up Christmas lights while a possessed Steve scampers around. When Stan tells Hayley that they need to perform a ritual killing of Nemo, she fights to protect him and ends up shooting Stan. Stan awakes in the hospital and finds everything is back to normal. He was accepted back into his church when it tuned out that Roger’s eggnog “pimp” cup was really the Holy Grail. Nemo was sent off to Alaska to be raised by Sarah Palin and become the future Anti-Christ.
A Strange but fun Christmas episode, another American Dad Classic.

 MINSTREL KRAMPUS

GUEST (VOICES)
Danny Glover (Earthsea)
 As the holidays approach, Steve becomes a brat and Stan takes him to see his grandfather to be scared straight. Grandpa Jack tells him the story of Krampus, who punishes the naughty children at Christmas and Steve refuses to buy into it, as Jack tells how he captured the Krampus and keeps it in a copper pot in the basement. Steve starts opening his gifts early and Stan tries to hide them in the basement. There, he is called by the Krampus who talks him into being let out to punish Steve, but he kidnaps him instead and demands Jack so he can extract revenge. Stan tells his father what he did to Jack’s horror as he promises to use his CIA connections to get him out. Instead, Jack takes off.
In the Krampus’ Castle in Bavaria, Steve is imprisoned to his surprise and spanked. Stan talks to Roger who brings up Santa, but Stan is nervous about confronting Santa after their last encounter. Despite this, they set off to the North Pole and are captured. Santa beats Stan as he tells what happened. Santa only agrees to help if they can kill Krampus and also promises to take him off the naughty list. At the Krampus’ lair, the household goods try to convince Steve that Krampus only punishes naughty children because he cares for their well-being. Steve realizes that it is the truth and discovers that the Krampus actually only intended to beat Jack to save him from being bad, but was captured in a moment of carelessness while eating strudel.
Meanwhile, Hayley goes Christmas shopping but needs money. She goes to see Roger for a loan but he refuses her and gives her the help-wanted section where she spots a job at the airport. There, she bumps into Jack trying to flee as he tries to figure out why he should help the family. She gets the message through to him and he heads to Bavaria to save Steve. Santa and Stan arrive and take on the Krampus, killing the household items. As Steve tries to stop him, Santa shoots Krampus and finishes him off before turning the gun on Stan and Steve as he reveals himself to be the true bad guy due to being a partner in the toy business. As Santa tries to shoot Stan, Jack intervenes and saves Stan, injuring Santa who flees with his elves. As Jack lays dying, his and the Krampus’ blood intermingles, allowing Jack to become the new Krampus to punish naughty children.’
American Dad’s version of the Krampus myth, this episode aired a year late due to shootings in America but it was worth the wait. The ending was brilliant.

DREAMING OF A WHITE PORSCHE CHRISTMAS

Guest Voices
Peter MacNicol (Ghostbusters 2)
The family goes to the mall to get their picture taken for the family Christmas party invitation and Stan half-heartedly shops, just picking up whatever he can grab. When Francine points out that she is wearing a sweater that matches the one he picked out, he has to return it. When he bumps into Principal Lewis, he insists he come to the party since his antics excite everyone. When Stan is ignored at the party except for running errands, he wishes he had Lewis’ life while placing the angel on the tree.
When he wakes up the next morning, he finds that his wish has come true although Roger is still his companion, apparently due to touching Stan’s bottom at the moment of the wish. He starts to enjoy his new life but decides he needs to consult with Lewis to get an idea of how to further enjoy it. But when they find Lewis, they discover that he has inherited the family. This causes Stan distress and he tries to wish things back without luck. Roger speculates that he might need to learn a lesson first but Stan refuses to be that patient and confronts the family, although they don’t recognize him as their dad and husband. When Lewis reveals that he has also become a CIA agent, Stan takes his gun from his own accustomed place and takes the family back to his home, holding them at gunpoint.
As the CIA arrive, Stan desperately tries to get the family to remember him. Francine feigns remembering to get them turned loose and they go free to the CIA, who then lob gas at Stan. He tries to flee, but is caught when leaping off of a bridge and is riddled with bullets. Having apparently learned his lesson, an angel meets Stan and takes him to an ideal dream family that is not his own. Stan realizes that things are not correct and calls for his angel. He reveals that the dream family is his real family and the one he knows was given to his as punishment. When he wants to return to the family he knows, he is rejected. Opening gifts with the family, he finds he is still a bad father and when Roger arrives without knowing who he is, he tries to convince him and eventually succeeds in winning him over by telling him about his crazy habits. To try to reverse the wish, he has Roger place the angel on the tree and make a wish, but gets a Porsche instead. Stan tries to get the family to wish he wasn’t around, but fails. Gazing at a wine glass that looks similar to what Francine wanted, he makes note of a small dirty spot and finds that his new wife hates her cleaning being criticized. He gets her to wish they weren’t married and then places the angel on the tree, allowing Stan to go back to the family he knows, although Snot tries to pass himself off as a family member as well without luck.
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The latest American Dad they decide to do there version of It’s a wonderful Life with a few neat twists. It once again proves American Dad knows how to celebrate Christmas and makes people look forward to the next one.

CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – THE CHRISTMAS EPISODES – PART 3

TYUYTU

MAIN CAST (VOICES)

Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
Seth Green (IT)
Mila Kunis (Black Swan)
Mike Henry (Ted)
Patrick Warburton (Scream 3)

Don’t Be a Dickens at Christmas

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Carrie Fisher (Star Wars)

JTYUJYTJTYJTYJTYAs Peter looks forward to enjoying the holidays at home, he finds that Lois expects him to participate in a number of other activities including vising a homeless shelter and spending Christmas with her parents. When he complains, she decides to leave him at home alone and takes the kids with her. While watching a Patrick Swayze film, he falls asleep and awakens to find Swayze as his guide in order to help him find his Christmas spirit. They visit his past where he spent a happy Christmas with his mom and peek in on several of the citizens of Quahog celebrating Christmas in the present. But in Peter’s future, he finds he has died and is forced to exist only as an aged Brian’s dog farts. He rushes to the Pewterschmidts to be with the family, but joins Patrick in a final dance to close out the episode.TYUTYUYUTYUAnother great festive Family Guy, strange in places but very entertaining, a must for the holidays.

 

CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – THE CHRISTMAS EPISODES – PART 2

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MAIN CAST

Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Big Bad Beetleborgs)
Seth Green (Idle Hands)
Mila Kunis (Ted)
Mike Henry (The Cleveland Show)
Patrick Warburton (Men In Black 2)
Adam West (Batman 60s)
Jennifer Tilly (Bride of Chucky)

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GUEST CAST

Ty Simpkins (Jurassic World)

When Quahog experiences a snow day during the holiday season, Peter ruins Lois’ grandmother’s antique table in one of his stunts. When they go to the mall to replace it, Chris gets the idea to sit on Santa’s lap and ask for a trampoline, an idea endorsed by Peter, but when the line refuses to move they find the mall is without a Santa. Pressed into service as a replacement, Peter discovers the job comes with numerous benefits. Leaving the Fuzzy Clam in a drunken stupor with dinner, he runs into the real Santa who is annoyed at his behavior and threatens him with the naughty list if he refuses to give up being Santa. Peter calls his bluff and they engage in a war of pranks, but when the real Santa has had enough of such games, he slips his belt as a garrote around Peter’s neck and gives him a final warning to give up the job. Frightened, Peter agrees, but to show there is no hard feelings, Santa gives him a Penthouse as a gift that Peter originally found when he was twelve.Meanwhile, Stewie discovers that Brian has been crashing office Christmas parties in hopes of scoring food and women, although without luck. Stewie turns up to get a laugh at his attempts, but has a great time instead and tags along on further attempts. To liven up an otherwise dead party at a printer company, Stewie threatens the lightest drinkers with dismissal, which inspires the real boss to follow though with the threat and Stewie stays on as an employee. When he realizes that people have lost their jobs because of him, and further threats from the boss, he takes it upon himself to cut the remaining employees checks for $11,000 each, which was the extent of his ability.

All in all, “How the Griffin Stole Christmas” is an enjoyable episode. The funniest joke may have been when they make fun of those weird FarmersOnly.com farmer dating ads. Laughed my ass off. Another great Christmas episode to enjoy around the holiday season.

CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – THE CHRISTMAS EPISODES – PART 1

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MAIN CAST
Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Big Bad Beetleborgs)
Seth Green (Idle Hands)
Mila Kunis (Ted)
Mike Henry (The Cleveland Show)
Patrick Warburton (Men In Black 2)
Adam West (Batman 60s)
Jennifer Tilly (Bride of Chucky)

A VERY SPECIAL FAMILY GUY FREAKIN’ CHRISTMAS

GUEST CAST
Gene Simmons
Paul Stanley
Lois signs Stewie up to star as baby Jesus in a nativity scene at the Quahog Christmas pageant. Stewie plays along in hopes of pleasing Santa, whom he believes is omnipotent and thereby can supply him with plutonium. After Lois repeatedly reminds Peter to donate a present to charity, he mistakenly donates all of the family’s Christmas gifts to a needy kids’ charity. Lois seems unfazed by the mistake, but insists that the entire family shop for new presents at the mall. Peter reluctantly agrees, although he only wants to watch KISS Saves Santa on television; Brian stays behind to keep an eye on the turkey cooking in the oven. While at the mall, Peter finds a pair of barrettes that Meg wanted and ends up chasing down an old lady to a pet fish store called “Age of Aquariums”, where the old lady throws fish food on him so that all the fish jump onto him to feed while the old lady escapes.
Meanwhile at home, an ember shoots onto the family rug from the fireplace. While Brian tries to deal with this crisis, the overcooked turkey begins to burn. Brian finds a fire extinguisher, but to his dismay, it is merely a novelty item filled with plastic snakes, which, upon being released into the fire, promptly explode and make it worse. After using the real fire extinguisher, he slips on the foam from it and the TV falls on top of him. Afterwards the interior of the house is destroyed; Brian escapes, but with his paws burnt hairless. Amazingly, Lois maintains a cheerful attitude, saying that they just need to clean up a bit. However, when Meg tells her that they are out of paper towels, Lois suffers a nervous breakdown and screams at the family about how difficult it is to ensure that Christmas happens without a hitch, then runs from the ruined house on a rampage (Meg then ironically finds some paper towels mere seconds after Lois’ rampage).
Lois storms through town, berating people for their Christmas optimism. When she reaches town square, she climbs the Christmas tree there and grabs the ornamental star on top, bent on destroying it. The rest of the family arrives and Stewie, eager to perform a good deed to earn Santa’s grace, performs an extemporaneous monologue about Jesus and the meaning of Christmas. Lois, watching Stewie, regains her sanity, but Peter, who thinks Lois isn’t getting the message, allows the police to shoot her with a tranquilizer dart, just after she puts the star back on the tree. The next morning at Christmas, the family opens their presents: Stewie gets his plutonium; Peter gets a week’s vacation, a new VCR, and his own copy of Kiss Saves Santa; and Brian gets at what first appears to be a bottle of wine, but actually turns out to be a book. Lois is heavily sedated, sitting limply in a rocking chair and drooling. In the closing scene, the Griffins wish everyone a Merry Christmas (though Lois is still too numb to speak clearly).
The first time we got to see the Griffins celebrate Christmas and its become a classic. loved Stewie’s quote about Jeffrey Hunt. The Kiss saves Santa bits were quite fun too. all in all a great episode to start the holiday season.

ROAD TO THE NORTH POLE

GUEST CAST
Drew Barrymore (Poison Ivy)
David Boreanaz (Bones)
Carrie Fisher (Star Wars)
Bruce McGill (No Ordinary Family)
Ron MacFarlane
Brian takes Stewie to the mall, only to get a rude brush-off from Santa. As a result, Stewie vows to kill Santa for blowing him off and forces Brian to take him to the North Pole. Attempting to trick Stewie, he brings him to a Santa’s Village amusement park. Soon discovering the charade, Stewie threatens to shoot Brian if he does not take him to the real North Pole. Stewie hitches a ride with a trucker and so Brian follows him all the way to Canada. On the way, Stewie accidentally causes a traffic pileup by discharging a flare pistol in the cab of the truck, which catches fire and explodes. Crashing his car in a chain reaction, Brian becomes angry and tells Stewie that Santa does not exist. Stewie becomes frustrated and continues to attempt to hitchhike. The pair then encounter a Canadian who gives them his snowmobile.
Continuing north, they soon run out of gas, but receive help from the Aurora Boreanaz, who instructs them to stay at a nearby cabin. The two survive the night in the cabin and set out on foot the next morning. They finally make it to Santa’s workshop, only to find a dark, gloomy factory in a dreary, polluted, lifeless wasteland, Santa a sickly and somewhat psychopathic old man, the elves horribly inbred and mutated from Santa’s attempt to keep up with the increasing toy demands year after year, and the reindeer carnivorous feral monsters that eat the elves who wandered out into the snow to die of exhaustion. Santa suddenly collapses and is too sick to deliver the presents. Brian and Stewie agree to do it, only to waste time at their first stop and leave, after being discovered by a family, whom they later attack, The reindeer eat each other.
On Christmas morning, everybody wakes up to find no presents under their trees. They turn on the news, which is broadcasting the same story. Brian and Stewie appear on the broadcast and bring the dying Santa out in a wheelchair, explaining that humanity’s greed is killing him and if they don’t shorten their demands to one Christmas present a year, they may have to give up Christmas altogether. Chastened, everyone agrees and, one year later, Santa has recovered, the workshop is once again a lively, colorful Christmassy cottage and the elves and reindeer are all rejuvenated.
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Road to the North Pole is an amazing feature length exmas special, making it a Road to episode also makes it memorable. the Musical numbers are excellent and well written. The episode also has a heartwarming message come episodes end.

JESUS, MARY AND JOSEPH

GUEST CAST
Cleo King (Mik & Molly)
Bruce McGill (No Ordinary Family)
Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool)
As the Griffins prepare for Christmas by decorating their tree, Meg finds an ornament of the manger and Peter tells the story of Christmas. Joseph (played by Peter) and his friend Robby (played by Brian) spot Mary (played by Lois) in their village. Joseph introduces himself to her. They have many dates, but Joseph is annoyed by Mary’s reluctance to have sex. Mary claims that she is destined for something special. Later, Mary tells Joseph that she has been visited by an angel (played by Bruce) who told her that God has blessed her with his child. Joseph accepts this. Taking a break from the story, Peter and the family call their Aunt Helen to wish her a merry Christmas. The call does not go well and Peter returns to the story.
On the way to Bethlehem on a mule (played by Meg), Joseph is skeptical about the baby. Elsewhere, three wise men (played by Glenn Quagmire, Cleveland Brown, and Joe Swanson) are inspired to travel to Bethlehem themselves. They stop at the palace of King Herod (played by Carter Pewterschmidt) for water, and talk of their plans to see the Messiah. Herod decides to protect his title and win the love of Jodie Foster (a reference to John Hinckley, Jr.) by killing the child. Mary and Joseph arrive at an inn, but the manager (played by Mort Goldman) denies them a room. Mary goes into labor, and the manager offers them space in a stable. Mary ponders what to call the new child. The angel takes her list of possible names to God, who is inspired to name the child “Jesus” after something the angel said.
The wise men, who are following a light in the sky, argue about the nature of the light; they think it might be an airplane. A doctor tells them of an earlier messiah who was not successful. The wise men arrive with their gifts as the savior is born. A drummer boy (played by Chris) joins them. King Herod arrives with his army and demands the child. Jesus (played by Stewie) transforms the manger into a fighter plane and destroys Herod’s troops with it. After Peter finishes his story, a pregnant couple arrives at the door. They explain that their car broke down and they need help, but Peter, thinking that they’re faking, gives them the cold shoulder and threatens to call the police. When they press their request for help, Peter goes to get his baseball bat.
The Family Guy’s retelling of the Jesus Myth. Family Guy makes the myth far more entertaining than other adaptations. Not as good as Road To The North Pole, but then nothing could beat that one.

CHRISTMAS GUY

GUEST CAST
Tony Sirico (The Sopranos)
The Griffin family goes to Quahog Mall for the annual Christmas Carnival, but they find the festivities have been cancelled, causing Stewie to go on a destructive rampage. Vinny learns that Carter, Lois’s father, canceled the carnival. Peter confronts Carter who tells him that it was cancelled because he hates Christmas. Peter vows to help Carter find his Christmas spirit. Peter tries a fake story letter, making Carter drink egg nog in a hotel room, and having him masturbate, to no effect. When Peter accuses Carter of acting Jewish, Carter reverses his position on the carnival.
Despite being re-established at the Quahog Mall, the Christmas Carnival fails to raise Stewie’s spirits. When the Mall Santa Claus asks Stewie what he wants for Christmas, Stewie realizes he wants Brian back. Vinny pretends to be Brian, acting like an intellectual and a writer, but fails to cheer up Stewie. Trying to raise his spirits, Vinny and Stewie return to the Quahog Mall, where Stewie spots his past self time travelling to purchase a gift. Remembering the time travel occurred prior to Brian’s death, Stewie realizes he can use Past Stewie’s return pad to save Brian. Vinny appeals to Past Stewie’s vanity to obtain his backpack, and brings it to Present Stewie. Stewie says goodbye to Vinny, whom he and the family will no longer have met if Brian lives.
Stewie arrives in the past, saving Brian from being hit by the car. After explaining the situation to Brian, Stewie sends the return pad back to his past self in order to prevent a temporal paradox. Now unable to return and having altered his past, Stewie fades from existence as Brian thanks him for his actions. Unaware of what occurred, Past Stewie comes out of the house and wonders who Brian was talking to.
In the present on Christmas Day, Brian is alive and well. Grateful to him for saving his life, Brian thanks Stewie, who remains oblivious to his averted death, as well as his alternate self’s actions.
One of the most memorable Christmas episodes as it b rings back the beloved character Brian,  making Stewie’s Christmas wish come true.

THE 2,000 YEAR OLD VIRGIN

GUEST CAST
Ana Gasteyer (Mean Girls)
Lucas Grabeel (Smallville)
Emily Osment (Mom)
On a trip to the Quahog Mall before Christmas, Peter and Lois bump into Jesus and discover that he is still hanging around Quahog due to not being entirely comfortable dealing with his own home life with God. Jesus invites Peter over to his place. However, since it is a depressing bachelor apartment, Peter invites him out with Glenn Quagmire, Cleveland Brown, and Joe Swanson to have a drink. At the Drunken Clam, they start to plan a birthday party and Jesus tells them that he has never had sex: to make his birthday special, they promise to help him lose his virginity. Their attempts to achieve this fail, upsetting Peter. Lois tries to find out what Jesus likes, but her nice manners cause him to want to sleep with her. Approaching Peter about his issue to help him, Peter is shocked but agrees to help when Jesus promises him an expensive massage chair in return for sleeping with Lois. He lets Lois know about Jesus’ interest in her and she reluctantly agrees.
As they head out together, Peter enjoys his chair at the Drunken Clam. During this time, Peter has a fantasy of Lois and Jesus having sex and has second thoughts. These are confirmed when other members of the bar confirm that Jesus is not a virgin, but pulls this annual stunt every Christmas to have sex with people’s wives. Peter tries multiple ways to get to their liaison to stop things. Peter rushes to the room to find that no cheating took place as Lois decided that their marriage was too good. Jesus applauds their “lesson”, making the excuse that he concocted this charade as a tale of resisting temptation, and leaves them to celebrate their Christmas.
On Christmas Day, Rupert gives Stewie a Joni Mitchell CD for Christmas, disappointing him because Stewie had observed Rupert picking out a heart-shaped necklace. As Stewie tearfully listens to “Both Sides, Now” on the CD, he wonders whom the necklace was for, and it is revealed to be for Mayor Adam West.
A great Christmas episode that answers the question as to weather or not Jesus is a Virgin. Seeing Adam West as a crossdresser was quite disturbing thou.