“Brian: Portrait of a Dog” is the seventh episode and the season finale of the primary season of the animated comedy collection Family Guy. It initially aired on Fox within the United States on May 16, 1999. The episode options anthropomorphic canine Brian after he swallows his satisfaction, and joins a canine present, after a lot convincing, with the intention to win cash for a new air conditioner. But after an argument over a trick gone dangerous, together with his proprietor, Peter Griffin, Brian realizes he’s a second-class citizen and runs away from dwelling, touchdown him within the pound on loss of life row. Desperate to avoid wasting their canine, the Griffin household makes an attempt to launch Brian, and stop him from being euthanized.
“Portrait of a Dog”, together with the twenty-seven different episodes from Family Guy‘s first and second season, have been launched on a 4-disc DVD set within the U.S. on April 15, 2003. The units included transient audio commentaries by Seth MacFarlane and numerous crew and solid members for a number of episodes. It additionally options French and Spanish variations of the episodes, an alteration of an episode, and deleted scenes of some episodes.
Ahsan Haque of IGN rated the episode a 9.6/10, praising the random jokes and calling it “one more finely crafted early episode that tells a nice cohesive story, has some nice random jokes, and throws in a bucket of social satire for good measure. This was additionally the ultimate episode of the extraordinarily quick however groundbreaking first season, and positively ranks amongst one of the best within the collection.”
The episode makes references to the U.S. Civil Rights Movement. While arguing his case earlier than town council, Brian tries to reference the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Plessy v. Ferguson, earlier than being lower off. Another reference comes after Brian is freed, he drinks from a ingesting fountain in a defiant method, a reference to the 1974 tv film, The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman. Other media references embody the Griffins watching the TV present Eight is Enough and Peter writing a letter to Angus MacGyver, from the present MacGyver, asking him to rescue Brian from jail. When Brian places eye drops into his eyes earlier than the canine present, he says “Showtime” with jazz fingers. This ritual and phrase are a reference to Joe Gideon in All That Jazz
“Brian: Portrait of a Dog” was written by Gary Janetti, his first time writing for the collection, and directed by former King of the Hill director Michael Dante DiMartino, who was a newcomer to the present on the time, having directed “I Never Met the Dead Man”. DiMartino would later go on to co-create and produce Avatar: The Last Airbender with Bryan Konietzko at Nickelodeon Animation Studios. Roy Allen Smith and Peter Shin (who’ve been supervising different episodes of the present), acted as supervising administrators. Mike Henry, Neil Goldman, Andrew Gormley and Garrett Donovan labored within the episode as story editors and workers writers. Series creator Seth MacFarlane, David Zuckerman, Lolee Aries, David Pritchard and Mike Wolf labored as government producer, whereas Craig Hoffman, Danny Smith and Gary Janetti labored as supervising producers. In addition to the common solid, the episode featured the voices of actress and comic Mary Scheer, actors Dick Van Patten, Joey Slotnick, and actress and sister of present creator Seth MacFarlane, Rachael MacFarlane. Recurring visitor voice actors included actress Lori Alan, author and animator Butch Hartman, and voice actor Wally Wingert.
A social employee proclaims to Brian and the remaining of his household that Brian is sentenced to be put down by a deadly injection, which shocks everybody. While Peter works on Brian’s attraction, Brian decides to review the regulation as a lot as he can, and goes to courtroom to defend himself, and at last will get the possibility to plead his case earlier than the Quahog City Council. During his parole listening to, he references the courtroom case Plessy v. Ferguson, however sadly for him, the council believes that it is silly to hearken to a canine. Just when Brian is about to be dismissed, Peter steps in and delivers a last-ditch emotional attraction on his behalf. The metropolis council members stay unmoved till Peter bribes them with $20 every, and Brian is straight away freed. The costs in opposition to him are lastly dropped and the city reveals him new respect, permitting him to lastly drink out of a water fountain, displaying his standing to be the identical as that of the opposite residents of the group. The household returns dwelling and Stewie, in an uncommon (on the time) show of respect in the direction of Brian, bows ever so barely in the direction of him. Brian and Peter are then left alone. Brian licks Peter’s face in an endearing canine gesture, and threatens to kill him if he ever tells anybody about it.
On the way in which dwelling, Peter and Brian argue till Brian will get out of the automobile. A police officer provides Brian a ticket, for which Peter has to pay $10, for violating the native leash regulation, which solely widens the rift between Peter and Brian. Another argument ensues and Peter mentions that he discovered Brian on the street as a stray canine. Angry that Peter introduced that up and changing into extra indignant when Peter then calls for that Brian cease being a dangerous canine, Brian leaves the home, whereupon he’s handled cruelly by the group, and is (in the end) pressured to sleep on the bus shelter. Peter buys a new cat which seems to be troublesome and abusive; the household will get rid of it and searches for Brian. By the time Peter decides to apologize to Brian, Brian has been kicked out of a restaurant and a public retailer and chased by the police when he was discovered ingesting from a water fountain. Brian turns into homeless, having really attacked a man on the road for treating him as a drunken hobo and for not believing that he was not a good canine however a loopy animal. He is subsequently taken away by the police.
Quahog is within the grip of an uncommon warmth wave and, not having air con, the Griffins are struggling. Peter learns of an upcoming canine present providing a high prize of $500, which he sees as the proper method to have the ability to purchase an air conditioner. He persuades a reluctant Brian to take part. Brian performs his methods on the canine present. Peter places a bone biscuit on Brian’s nostril; discovering this demeaning and changing into indignant, Brian refuses to “perpetuate the stereotype of the ‘good canine'”, in addition to Peter saying he’s embarrassed that Brian wouldn’t comply. Brian subsequently exits in a huff.
The episode was written by Gary Janetti and directed by Michael Dante DiMartino. It obtained reward from tv critic Ahsan Haque for its storyline and use of cultural references. The episode featured visitor performances by Butch Hartman, Rachael MacFarlane, Dick Van Patten, Mary Scheer, Joey Slotnick and Wally Wingert, together with a number of recurring voice actors for the collection.
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