American Dad!, Vol. 1
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Though the jokes in American Dad! are not as free-associative as in Family Guy, McFarlane cannot seem to resist dispensing with character integrity for a gratuitous potshot at, say, Lisa Kudrow. But as with Family Guy, American Dad! tears at the sitcom envelope. The blasphemous episode "Deacon Stan, Jesus Man," had the distinction of being voted "Worst TV Show of the Week" by the Parents Television Council. And American Dad! has its own version of Family Guy's surreal titanic bouts between Peter Griffin and that chicken. The episode "Homeland Insecurity" features a digression in which a Department of Water and Power worker greedily kills his partner over a gem-encrusted gold "turd," only to find out his wife is having an affair. As he wails to the heavens, the words "To be continued" appear onscreen. According to the audio commentary, the writers do indeed intend to continue this compelling soap opera. So that's something to look forward to. --Donald Liebenson
- Commentary on 12 episodes by Creators & Producers Mike Barker, Matt Weitzman, Seth MacFarlane and others
- "All in the Family: Creating American Dad" featurette
- "Secrets of the Glass Booth: Behind the Voices of American Dad" featurette
- Animatic-to-Episode comparison
- Table Read and Animatic
- 42 deleted scenes
Top Customer Reviews
When it looked like the show was about to be cancelled the creators of `Family Guy' came up with another series. Critiquing `post 9-11' America, `American Dad!' updates `All in the Family's' formula through a cartoon format. The animation style and some of the voices are similar to 'Family Guy', but this series has much more in common with those inherently political sitcoms of the 1970's.
CIA Agent Stan Smith wants to protect his country-but he also
wants to maintain his own little sheltered world view. Despite his job Stan ultimately has a very limited grasp of international affairs. However he does know that he loves his family and is only trying to do what he thinks is best for them---by any means necessary!
In the pilot episode, Stan attempts to get his son Steve a dog so he will then be popular with the ladies-never mind the fact that this particular dog had been selected only because it was alive during the Reagan administration-making the poor thing older than dirt in people years! After it is accidentally killed during a `home invasion' false alarm, he again tries to help his son out by rigging the school elections so Steve is elected the school president!
"Threat Levels" exposes the realities of public sector vs. private sector pay. When the formerly homemaking Francine enters the real-estate business and then quickly becomes a success Stan feels emasculated. He loves his wife, but her new career cuts away at his fantasy of the `male-breadwinner head of household' myth he had constructed and maintained for himself.Read more ›
If you're looking for riotous humor and fine extras, then check out "American Dad!: Volume One". All 13 episodes of the uproariously funny animated series are presented in standard full screen format. Its picture quality is quite good with solid colors. Its 5.1 Dolby Digital sound is crisp and clear. Among special features, the 3-disc set includes in-depth audio commentaries by series writers and voice cast on 12 episodes, "All in the Family" and "Secrets of the Glass Booth" behind-the-scenes featurettes, numerous deleted scenes, animated comparisons and promo spots. Overall, "American Dad! Volume One" scores a "B+".
I think it was somewhere around "Homeland Insecurity" and "A Smith in the Hand" that I began to change my mind on the show. That was when it began to show some real potential and begin to shine on its own, regardless of what was going on in "Family Guy".
"American Dad!" contains some of the sharpest political satire this side of Steven Colbert and John Stewart. Like Colbert is mocks the state of affairs in the nation today with an "everything is rosy!" attitude, and that's something I always enjoy. It also helps that this show can go even more over-the-top than "Family Guy" can.
Really there's not too much more I can say about this show. If you like funny, sharp, intelligent political satire, you'll get a big kick out of it. If you don't, well... you're doomed, so there. :P
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