20th Century Fox Television
Style: DVD Review
Originally written for Static Multimedia
Back in 2005, when American Dad! initially premiered on the Fox network, few people took it as anything more then a mere Family Guy wannabe. An attempt to bank off of the success of the newly resurrected animated sitcom. It was my first impression as well. Similar to my initial thoughts on Futurama being nothing more then an uninspired copycat of The Simpsons. I have to stop thinking that just because the animation is identical, the show and content must be, too. Well, luckily for us, American Dad! stuck around and forced fans of the Griffin family to watch it and see it for what it really is; a unique and creative satirical show that easily stands apart from Family Guy. Oh yeah, and it’s also funny as hell.
The fourth volume of American Dad! has recently been released on DVD. On occasion, when I was too lazy to get up off of the couch after watching Family Guy, I would sit through the American Dad! episode that immediately follows on Fox’s Sunday night lineup. And yes, I grew to like the show the more I watched it. But after receiving Volume 4 and being told to write a review on it, I was forced to watch five straight hours of the show. When I wasn’t hysterically laughing during this little 14-episode marathon (which wasn’t that much), I was thinking about how much I was starting to like this show. In fact, I was starting to love this show. American Dad! is in many ways a far better show then Family Guy with better plot structures and a more professional approach to its material. But that’s a whole other argument that I don’t have time for in this review.
Volume 4 starts off strongly with “Tearjerker,” the hilarious James Bond parody that involves Roger (the family alien) as the devious villain whose diabolical plan revolves around producing a movie so sad that anyone who watches it will cry themselves to death. It’s difficult for me to pick any favorites out of the bunch with so many strong episodes. However, I had tears in my eyes during “1600 Candles,” the episode where Steve finally hits puberty. The thought of dealing with another adolescent child is too much for Stan and Francine so they inject him with a serum that forces him to age quicker. The revenge-themed “Escape from Pearl Bailey” is another highlight that offers an enjoyable send-up from the film The Warriors.
American Dad! Volume 4 is a great DVD that convinced me that the sitcom is more then just the show that comes on after Family Guy. It’s smart, funny and incredibly entertaining. This DVD is a no-brainer for lovers of the show. But for all those people teetering on the edge of whether they like American Dad! or they don’t, this could be the DVD that officially certifies you as a true fan.
Review: 4 out of 4 stars