October 8, 2005

I Wonder, Is Stewie Becoming A Popular Name?

Stewie_bouncer.jpg

The baby hurls grenades and sets traps that keep missing the target. "Damn you, vile woman" has become his signature cry, and a T-shirt slogan for the series. The running joke plays on the idea of babies as mini-despots, awaiting handmaidens to conduct feeding, changing, bathing. They get silent spaces for multiple naps and, for their waking hours, they receive instant antidotes for any spells of boredom. But as Stewie learns to stand on his own two feet, the parental attention subsides, and the infantile rage begins.

Of course, the 2's are never so terrible as the way Stewie inflicts them, and part of the larger commentary is about how quickly children grow up, learning methods from the outer world that will help assuage their inner hurt. The show is as much a vehicle for pop-culture commentary as it is a domestic comedy, and the writers are constantly referring to the schlocky shows they must have watched at a young age, as if they were spitting up mashed peas that they had been force-fed.

The Baby Returns, Continuing to Reign [nyt]
Buy Stewie Griffin - The Untold Story at Amazon [amazon]
And for you teen parents, next time you're at the mall, pick up some Family Guy baby clothing at Hot Topic!

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