How much is too much Seth MacFarlane?

21:30, Jan 23 2013

According to a report from, Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane will be back next season with yet another television show for the Fox network. MacFarlane is executive-producing the show, written by his Ted co-writers Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild, about "two successful guys in their 30s who have their lives turned upside down when their nightmare dads unexpectedly move in with them".

So, with this show - and others - in development, three others on the air already, a hit comedy movie, and an awards hosting gig, in addition to a nomination for Best Original Song, I feel I have to ask: at what point should we stop and say "okay, that's enough Seth MacFarlane for now"?

MacFarlane is the mind behind Family Guy, as well as its spinoff The Cleveland Show and American Dad. But the man is positively ubiquitous: in recent years, MacFarlane has released a Grammy-nominated album of swing music, appeared on the Comedy Central Roasts of David Hasselhoff, Donald Trump and Charlie Sheen, and released a hit Oscar-nominated movie (Ted).

If you don't think MacFarlane has done a good job of traversing different forms of entertainment so far, then the next year or two should convince you otherwise.

According to various reports, MacFarlane is rebooting The Flintstones for Fox (though it has been indefinitely delayed), in addition to developing another original animated comedy for the network. There is a sequel for Ted on the way, as well as another original film titled A Million Ways to Die in the West.

MacFarlane is also co-producing a new version of Carl Sagan's Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, to be hosted by Neil Degrasse Tyson, which will air on both Fox and National Geographic*. He can next be seen hosting the Academy Awards on February 25, and attending parties with girlfriend Emilia Clarke. Yes, the Emilia who plays Daenerys "Give me back my dragons!" Targaryen on Game of Thrones.


Hey, I like Seth MacFarlane as much as the next guy. Family Guy is one of the funnier shows on television, and American Dad and The Cleveland Show are always good for a chuckle or two. I thought Ted was hilarious. His album, Music Is Better Than Words, is a throwback and not really my style, but it's okay. I'm looking forward to his appearance on the Oscars, if only because he'll be a breath of fresh air for a stale show.

But I also think it's possible to get too much of a good thing. I don't think MacFarlane really needs to make another animated comedy, when it's clear that at least one of his existing shows (The Cleveland Show) is superfluous already. My fear is that MacFarlane, a talented guy whose work I enjoy, is spreading himself too thinly across all these projects. I'm worried we'll start to notice eventually.

What do you think: is Seth MacFarlane doing too much right now? Will he be doing too much in future? And how much of Seth MacFarlane is too much?

(*) Actually, that sounds pretty awesome.

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