As good news for TV geeks, family guy was renewed by Fox for another season and is still a great source of comedy after nearly 25 years. Meanwhile, the iconic show has successfully embraced numerous musical references and cameos across a wide range of genres, from popular songs to darling indie artists. Of course, iconic rockstars and rock and roll bands were no exception either.
Whether it’s a cheesy parody of the Beatles or a more specialized nod to alternative rock culture, including members of The Doors, Family Guy hasn’t stopped being a musically heavy comedy. since its debut in 1999. While not every reference or joke was a hit, many fans will want to reminisce about some of the show’s best and most hilarious references before gorging on new episodes.
The Doors – “Rock Hard” (Season 20 Episode 2)
When Peter and his gang hang out at a record store, they discuss iconic rock stars and bands who would have shared a similar fate. As Peter retrieves a Doors record, the show dives deep into the history of the iconic band in the 60s.
Although the sequence strongly caricatures the intellectual and musical genius of Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek and pokes fun at 60s clichés, it does a surprisingly good job of celebrating the Doors’ uniqueness while bringing a smile to rock fans. The fast-paced storyline brilliantly covers the band’s milestones with historically accurate details like Morrison’s dramatic relationship with Pamela Courson and the infamous 1969 gig in Miami.
Eddie Vedder – “Emmy Winning Episode” (Season 16 Episode 1)
The first episode of the sixteenth season opens with Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder and the popular TV show You better call Saulmaking a double reference: “Vedder Call Saul”.
When Vedder is talking to Saul on the phone, as diehard rock music fans might instantly notice, the rhyme refers to the Pearl Jam track “Even Flow.” With an accurate depiction of Vedder’s signature vocal style and the absurdity of the fictional TV show, the scene serves as one of the show’s most brilliant musical moments.
The Beatles – “Prescription Heroine” (Season 20, Episode 16)
As the Beatles are still one of the most referenced bands in pop culture, the band members and their songs have appeared in family guy several times. In this episode, Lois becomes addicted to the painkillers Brian is prescribed, and when he takes the last pill, Lois rushes off to a high school to hopefully find some new ones.
When Lois says “I’m Lucy, where’s the sky with diamonds?” it double references the legendary group and their classic track, which was “the song” of the Beatles era: “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” and the kaleidoscopic atmosphere of the 60s, fueled by hallucinogens and music psychedelic. It’s also hilarious to see Lois’ disappointment since the kids don’t have pills and work on completely sober social issues.
Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) – “Peter’s Def Jam” (Season 15 Episode 12)
In this episode, Lois suffers from a severe allergic reaction. While Chris mentions that Brian might be the cause of his allergies, she insists that Brian and Stewie would be great together as roommates. When Brian’s repeated boho mess upsets Stewie, they begin to argue.
family guyit is The iconic pun-based humor comes in when Stewie says, “Thanks to you, we have a recurring flea problem” and Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Flea” (Michael Peter Balzary) makes an appearance. The scene becomes iconic when Stewie continues, “Put on a shirt, you’re 50!”, poking fun at the rockstar’s “forever young” stereotype. Flea’s vocals and bass also add the perfect touch to the scene.
Elton John – “Rock Hard” (Season 20 Episode 2)
The title “Rock Hard” continues to pay off with another musical legend, Sir Elton John, in the same episode. When Stewie lands the “Elton John Greatest Hits” record, viewers are taken on a journey through Elton’s life in the 1970s.
With deeply personal subjects like his relationship with his father, his queer identity and his former drug use, this relatively late but extended appearance from Elton John hilariously celebrates a legend that continues to inspire pop culture today. today. The reference culminates with the iconic Dodger Stadium concert in 1975. Stewie’s dramatic character also complements the musical storyline perfectly from start to finish.
Bob Dylan – “In Harmony’s Way (Season 12 Episode 7)
Among many iconic rockstars and bands, family guy didn’t miss the chance to tease one of the biggest names in folk and country music: Bob Dylan. In this melodious episode, Peter and Quagmire accidentally discover a common talent, singing in perfect harmony, and immediately become a powerful musical duo.
During a concert rehearsal, Quagmire steals the moment he sees Bob Dylan, and Peter says, “Oh my God, I have to go talk to him. He’s the greatest overrated singer alive.” Peter’s cold commentary is sure to spark laughs, even for loyal Bob Dylan fans themselves. Peter and Quagmire’s silly but awesome musical moments and references combined, this episode remains memorable for music lovers, especially die-hard folk and country listeners. The shots of the rockstars on tour also add a nice touch to the episode.
Angus Young (AC/DC) – “Take A Letter” (Season 14 Episode 17)
In this episode of family guy, another iconic rockstar comes out loud and clear: AC/DC’s Angus Young. When Lois brings up Stewie’s kindergarten issues and suggests they should switch schools, Peter gets distracted (as usual) and asks her if she’s talking about the school where “they make them dress up with little shorts and hats like the AC/DC guy.”
As Brian questions Angus’ sartorial choices, Peter loudly defends the iconic guitarist, rocking the sign and saying, “Because he rocks.” The sequence comes to a comical end when the audience sees Angus on stage, saying, “When I picked this, I didn’t know I had to wear it when I was 60.” This reference marks another moment of respect for an unforgettable musician.
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