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Was Killing off Brian Griffin Simply a Huge Publicity Stunt?

10/12/2013
admin@michigancreative

As a life-long huge fan of the show, Family Guy, I was beyond shocked when they killed off one of the main characters, Brian Griffin, in November 24th’s episode by hitting him with a car and his wounds too severe to fix.

 

 

The aftermath of killing off the family dog resulted in an outrage on Family Guy’s Facebook page, the creation of multiple tribute pages and photos, and general rage in Fox’s decision to kill him off. To even further enrage the fans, the show replaced Brian’s character with another dog in the same episode.

This left fans wondering: Will he ever come back?

Family Guy has killed off characters in the past only to bring them back in later episodes, reveal the episodes were dream sequences, or have Stewie simply go back in time to save who ever was lost. None have created quite this much chatter, however.

So this left me wondering: Is this simply a huge publicity stunt?

Why would Family Guy choose to kill off one of the main characters so suddenly? The marketer in me immediately saw red flags. It created so much buzz for a show that is in its 12th season (numerous blogs and articles, huge interaction on social media, news stories, and an overall talk about why they killed off Brian) that is was almost impossible for it not to be one.

Fans even went so far as to start a change.org petition that prompted more than 128,000 people to ask to bring Brian back.

The show still has a solid following with its many loyal fans, but maybe this was a way to capture those who only occasionally watch the show, but are vested enough in the story lines to be upset of the killing. It worked. People that had forgotten about the show were suddenly very upset that he had been killed; many vowing to never watch the show again if they won’t being him back. Life long fans were suddenly reminded how much they have invested in his character over the past 12 seasons.

Well, either the show listened or it was their plan all along.

It was announced today that Brian Griffin will, in fact, be returning to the show in the December 15th episode, which is titled “Christmas Guy”. The synopsis states that “Stewie devises a master plan to get the one and only thing he wants for Christmas”. It is unclear, however, how he will be brought back and even if he will be brought back for good. I guess that remains to be seen.

So why did they do it? We may never really know, but I can assure you that publicity had at least something to do with it!

Life long Family Guy fan,

~Melissa