Hey Wortmaniacs. With much of my free time being gobbled up by the single-player Halo 3 campaign (review coming soon), The Report's going to be light on updates for the next few days. However, I did come across this little gem yesterday.
Apparently, the Family Guy Star Wars special was the highest-rated episode since the show returned from cancellation in 2005. Obviously, The Empire Strikes Back is next on the chopping block, with other Star Wars installments likely to follow.
I criticized the episode earlier this week, in that it played out as more of a re-enactment than a parody of the original 1977 Star Wars film. This article points out that some jokes, such as incest between Luke and Leia, were avoided to appease Lucasfilm, who allowed Family Guy to use the original music and sound effects.
It really is a trap. How can you parody something while maintaining a working relationship with its creator? Hence, we are left with a more-or-less straight re-telling of the story. Mind you, some jokes were pretty decent. However, it didn't have that typical Family Guy bite. And I missed that.
Rumor is, the reason Fox isn't re-running the episode is because a special-edition DVD is on its way. I expected this. If you head over to starwars.com you can already purchase animation cells from the episode and read up on how the episode came to be. You can also check out videos from the episode in case you can't wait for the Cartoon Network replay in a few weeks. It's synergy, and while some may call it crass, I can just call it brilliant. It's combining two already marketable brands which have an overlapping fanbase. Somone did their homework.
And by the way, I'd love to be able to frown on the whole Family Guy/Star Wars crossover, but I can't stay mad when a talking, plush Darth Vader Stewie might be in our future. I think I just gave someone an idea...