“Family Guy” is shifting its comedy material away from homophobic jokes.
On Sunday’s episode, Peter Griffin becomes the press secretary for President Donald Trump. Trump sexually assaults Meg Griffin, which causes Peter and Trump to fight. Trump yells at Peter “Many children have learned their favorite Jewish, black, and gay jokes by watching your show over the years.”
Peter replies: “In fairness, we’ve been trying to phase out the gay stuff. But you know what? We’re a cartoon. You’re the president.”
According to the show’s executive producers Rich Appel and Alec Sulkin, the comment wasn’t just a joke but a new comedic turn for the series.
“If you look at a show from 2005 or 2006 and put it side by side with a show from 2018 or 2019, they’re going to have a few differences. Some of the things we felt comfortable saying and joking about back then, we now understand is not acceptable,” Sulkin told TVLine. “If a show has literally been on the air for 20 years, the culture changes. And it’s not us reacting and thinking, ‘They won’t let us [say certain things].’ No, we’ve changed too. The climate is different, the culture is different and our views are different. They’ve been shaped by the reality around us, so I think the show has to shift and evolve in a lot of different ways.”
In an episode last year, Stewie, who was often the punchline for gay jokes on the show, had an epiphany that he may be sexually fluid.