*/**** Image N/A Sound A Extras C+
written by Alec Sulkin
directed by Dominic Polcino
by Ian Pugh Born the year after Return of the Jedi came out, I was left in limbo as far as the behemoth of popular culture that is Star Wars was concerned: too young to have seen the films when they exploded into the public consciousness, I was also a little too old to experience a religious awakening with their "Special Edition" revivals in the late-Nineties. I bore witness to a hundred "I am your father" jokes before any formal viewing of The Empire Strikes Back, and so, like other movie references I was not yet intellectually mature enough to piece together on my own (Rosebud is a sled, the Planet of the Apes is really Earth), I was more apt to laugh because the television kept telling me to laugh. It's a poisonous mentality, this vicarious sense of entertainment, and its infiltration of my generation is manifested in our exaltation of "Family Guy". Though the show brilliantly attacked social mores and narrative conventions, we were more impressed by its far-reaching knowledge of pop culture--mostly the kind of stuff we had only seen on Nick at Nite and the Internet--than by any of the subversive material therein. Ergo, once the fanbase had successfully rescued the series from premature cancellation, Seth MacFarlane and his crew became lazy, too often resorting to facile name-dropping.