Gossip Girl and South Park were in reruns this week, so the ever-ornery Parents Television Council instead turned its moralistic media eyes to American Dad! (which in turn should think about sending the PTC a muffin basket for the amount of media attention it's suddenly receiving).
The self-appointed watchdogs have taken aim at Seth MacFarlane's side project over the episode that aired Sunday night, "Don't Look a Smith Horse in the Mouth," in which the patriotic patriarch used his family's savings to buy a racehorse.
So far, so inoffensive.
The supposedly indecent material kicks in at the nine-minute mark, when Stan is told of the animal's care requirements.
"You're gonna have to do the horse chores…You have to brush the horse's coat and mane, water and feed it, then give it a full release," he's told. "You know, give it a happy photo finish. Take the glue out of the factory. Spank his front butt. Grant him a bone loan!"
While the scene is unlikely to earn MacFarlane & Co. any Writers Guild awards, it's not exactly calling for the fall of the nuclear family. Unless, of course, you ask the PTC.
"A broadcast television network aired an animated program on a Sunday evening when children were in the audience, and the program featured a man masturbating a horse," PTC President Tim Winter said. "Up until now, I never imagined that those exact words could ever be spoken in that particular order. But sadly, here we are."
Unfortunately, Winter's description is not entirely accurate. While the program featured a man—granted, a not very realistically animated man—kneeling down near a horse, it didn't get much more graphic than that. The shot immediately cut to Stan being sprayed in the face by a hose that he himself was holding.
Suggestive? Absolutely. Demonstrative of "the network's contempt for families"? Unlikely.
Still, the PTC, which, for the record, also took offense to bleeped-out cuss words and the fact that a female character's arm got ripped from its socket during the show, wants this particular episode to be taken into consideration by the U.S. Court of Appeals when it finally hears Fox v. FCC next week. That case will determine whether the network is at fault after an F-bomb (thanks, Cher!) and S-bomb (thanks, Nicole Richie!) slipped through their censors at Billboard Music Awards' 2002 and 2003 ceremonies.
Check out the episode and let us know, do you find it offensive?
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