Family Guy (1999– )
7 user

Death Has a Shadow 

Peter tries to smooth things over with Lois after he "innocently" defrauds the government out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.


Seth MacFarlane (created by), Seth MacFarlane (developed by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode cast overview:
Seth MacFarlane ... Peter Griffin / Brian Griffin / Stewie Griffin / Glenn Quagmire / Tom Tucker / God / Kool-Aid Guy / Johnson / Reporter / Bill Clinton / Charlie / Tom Hanks / Jerry Seinfeld / Dick / Black Woman / Mike Brady / Porno Bogart (voice)
Alex Borstein ... Lois Griffin (voice)
Seth Green ... Chris Griffin / Greg Brady (voice)
Lori Alan ... Diane Simmons / Nancy the Postal Lady (voice)
Fred Tatasciore ... John Madden (voice)
Butch Hartman Butch Hartman ... Various (voice)
Wally Wingert ... Various (voice)
Phil LaMarr ... Judge (voice)
Billy West ... Various (voice)
Joey Slotnick ... Dick Clark (voice)
Carlos Alazraqui ... Mr. Weed (voice)


Against strict orders from Lois, Peter drinks profusely at his buddy's bachelor party. After showing up at work hung over, Peter gets fired. When he applies for welfare, they accidentally send him a check for $150,000, which leads to a spending binge. When Lois discovers the truth, Peter attempts to return the money to the taxpayers by dumping it from a blimp at the Super Bowl. But when he is arrested, his family must come to the rescue.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Animation | Comedy


TV-14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »




Release Date:

31 January 1999 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby (as Dolby Surround)



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This was the first and special Family Guy episode because of the Super Bowl See more »


When Lois is reminding Peter about all his drunk times, just before she mentions Peter getting drunk off church wine, his eye goes over his nose. See more »


Meg Griffin: Mom, can I turn the heat up?
Lois Griffin: Don't touch the thermostat, Meg. Your father gets upset.
Meg Griffin: Come on. This thing goes up to 90.
Peter Griffin: Who touched the thermostat?
Meg Griffin: God, how does he always know?
Peter Griffin: Brain implant, Meg. Every father's got one. Tells you when the kids are messin' with the dial.
See more »


Featured in The Know's Top 10s: Top 10 Manliest Characters (2018) See more »

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User Reviews

Good start to a classic series
24 September 2016 | by david-klompasSee all my reviews

Watching the first episode of Family Guy is like taking a time machine back to the Clinton administration. Not only does it give the world a snapshot of the grotesque underbelly of American culture as it stood just before the turn of the millennium, but it also establishes Family Guy as a television sensation.

All the show's trademark comedic devices are here: the random cutaway sequences; the grotesque slapstick American jokes; and the oddball socio-political commentary. Many of the tropes evident in Seth McFarlan's later work are here, too. The use of animals, freakish characters, and inanimate objects as major plot devices which pop up again in American Dad and Ted and its sequel, and the strong male archetype with a warped sense of patriarchal control over his family, present in American Dad, are examples of this trend.

The animation in the first episode is crude for the period, which is a disappointment. And the voice acting is inconsistent with later seasons, a problem seen in other adult animated series such as The Simpsons. The humour offsets these problems to a large extent, although it doesn't entirely eliminate them.

Overall, this is a solid start to what later became a fixture of American Television Culture, despite some strange flaws and a strange obsession with death that hangs over the rest of the season. I strongly recommend it to anybody with an interest in American animated adult television.

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