Seth MacFarlane, creator of Fox’s Family Guy, is getting tired of his superlatively popular creation. Perhaps this is understandable given that the show has just started its tenth season and MacFarlane is a jack of all trades, voicing three of the show’s main characters while still overseeing the show’s production.
But could this be Family Guy‘s final season?
As MacFarlane told the Hollywood Reporter, “Part of me thinks that Family Guy should have already ended. I think seven seasons is about the right lifespan for a TV series. I talk to the fans and in a way I’m kind of secretly hoping for them to say we’re done with it. There are plenty of people who say the show is kind of over the hill… but still the vast majority go pale in the face when I mention the possibility.”
It sounds pretty transparent that MacFarlane does not want his show to suffer the same fate as Matt Groening’s The Simpsons, whose twenty-three seasons on-air have just about wiped out even that show’s most devoted fans. MacFarlane, after all, is one of the few people in Hollywood these days who does not seem to be drying up in a veritable Sahara of un-inspiration. If fact, he is one of the most creative talents that has come along network television in quite some time, producing three major network animated sitcoms and still finding time for various side-projects, including an updated version of the 1980s PBS series Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey, and a feature film due out next summer called Ted, among countless other dabblings.
While it is understandable that a creative genius like MacFarlane may be suffering like some best-selling pulp novelist, desiring instead to be a starving artist/cult icon, the truth is that popularity pays.
As H.L. Mencken would probably tell him about his long-running success and the adulation of the American people, (albeit for an increasingly dim-witted cartoon), “…don’t underestimate it.” After all, Seth, it’s not like American Dad or The Cleveland Show would still be on air if it were not for your brainchild, Baby Stewie.