PTV (Family Guy)

"PTV"
Family Guy episode
Family Guy PTV Promo.jpg
The U.S. Federal Communications Commission censoring Peter after taking a shower.
Episode no.Season 4
Episode 14
Directed byDan Povenmire
Written byAlec Sulkin
Wellesley Wild
Production code4ACX17
Original air dateNovember 6, 2005
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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Family Guy (season 4)
List of Family Guy episodes

"PTV" is the fourteenth episode in the fourth season of the American animated television series Family Guy. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on November 6, 2005. The episode sees the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) censor the shows on television after a controversial wardrobe malfunction at the Emmy Awards. Peter starts to create his own TV network which he calls PTV, broadcasting classic shows unedited and uncut, as well as original programming. PTV is a big success and Stewie and Brian join him creating shows for the network. Lois calls the FCC to close PTV as she is concerned over the issue of how children will be influenced by Peter's programming. Not only do the FCC close down the network, but they also start censoring the citizens of Quahog, so the Griffin family travels to Washington, D.C. and convince the Congress to have the FCC's rules reversed.

The episode was written by Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild and was directed by Dan Povenmire. The episode is a response to the FCC's measures to the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy. Show creator Seth MacFarlane commented that the episode's plot was inspired by the rage of the Family Guy crew towards the strict rules that the FCC made after the controversy. The episode contains a sequence of various scenes from different previous episodes. Many of the scenes were cut from the episodes they were originally made for owing to Fox's internal censors. With a Nielsen rating of 4.4, "PTV" was the nineteenth most-watched episode of the week in which it was broadcast. The episode gained mostly positive responses from critics, and received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour) as well as an Annie Award nomination for directing.

Plot

In a lengthy sequence completely unconnected to the main plot of the episode, after preventing Osama bin Laden from sending a hostile message to the United States, Stewie, parodying the opening scene from The Naked Gun, rides off on his tricycle, cycling through scenes from various movies and video games. He eventually arrives at his house and bikes into the garage where he runs over Homer Simpson, then Peter comes through the door, greets Stewie, looks down on the floor and wonders, "Who the hell is that?"

Peter wakes up Lois by noisily installing a red carpet in his bedroom, anticipating watching the Emmy Awards, but Lois forces him to go to Meg's school play. Her school play is supposed to be a reference to the musical Godspell. The next day, Peter learns about David Hyde Pierce's wardrobe malfunction at the Emmys and gets angry at Lois for missing the Emmy Awards and not being able to see it. Having received a small number of phone calls from citizens concerning the incident, The FCC decides to censor any content from television even the slightest that could be feared harmful to viewers under the orders of their straightforward chairman, Cobra Commander such as Chrissy Snow's Cleavage from Three's Company and even Dick Van Dyke's name. Peter is enraged at the FCC's actions, and on the advice from Channel 5 News reporter Tom Tucker, he decides to start his own TV network, which he calls PTV, on which he broadcasts classic shows unedited and uncut, and later introduces original programming such as Glenn Quagmire's Playboy After Dark-esque Midnight Q, Dogs Humping, and The Peter Griffin Sideboob Hour.

PTV becomes a huge success, and Brian and Stewie, impressed by the hits, join in to help Peter expand his television programming, as well as performing their own show Cheeky Bastard sitcom on PTV. Lois is furious about everyone's lust for perverted TV, as she is concerned over the issue of how children will be influenced by his programming (in the episode's DVD release, Peter and Cleveland, in a parody of Jackass, defecate on top of Lois' car). Brian then tells Lois that parents and legal guardians are the ones who should take full responsibility for what kids watch on TV and also points out that there are much worse influences besides TV. Regardless of that, Lois calls the FCC to have PTV shut down. This prompts Peter, Brian, and Stewie to perform an elaborate musical number about how insane the FCC's regulations are. Despite being impressed with the song, the arriving FCC representatives shut down PTV. When Peter tells the FCC representatives that while they can censor television they can't stop people from being who they are or how they live their lives, they decide to take on the challenge.

As such, the FCC representatives start to censor any foul language and inappropriate behavior in Quahog, ruining their times of privacy; for instance, a black "censor's bar" is pulled over Peter's genitals by FCC employees as he leaves the shower, all expletives are overdubbed with an air horn, and audible farts are banned in public (replaced with a dubbing of Steven Wright punchlines). Everyone in Quahog is angered by this, except for Lois, who approves of the FCC's actions, believing that everyone in Quahog needs a lesson in decency. However, she realizes that the FCC's presence puts her and Peter's sex life to a stop after they prevent her and Peter from having any real sex, even if no one's watching (specifically banning thrusting, tongue-kissing, moaning and any movement whatsoever). Peter angrily blames her, thus causing her to feel guilty for letting this happen. They lobby Congress to have the FCC's rulings reversed. At first they disagree due to their strong support of the FCC, but they relent when Peter honorably retorts by making them realize the resemblance of many Washington buildings to various private parts and any other body parts associating with it, such as the Capitol Building to a breast. The oppression of the FCC is finally gone, Lois congratulates Peter for beating the FCC on its tracks, and the family settles down to watch an uncensored episode of The Brady Bunch that features bathroom jokes.

Other Languages
polski: PTV
русский: PTV