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Fourth Wall
The fourth wall is a theatre term referring to the audience. This originates from the idea that there are three walls on a stage, one on the back, one to the left, and one to the right, as well as an imaginary fourth wall in front that contains the players within their play. To break the fourth wall means to show awareness of the audience or other things outside of it.

Occasions

Season 1

  • Death Has a Shadow
    • After Peter suggests that he apply for a minority scholarship, he winks at the screen.
  • A Hero Sits Next Door
    • Peter installs a live studio audience in the middle of the road of Spooner Street. He starts to make a joke with Brian but is forced to wait until the audience stops laughing in order to complete his line.
    • Peter tells Joe that he'll have it done faster than you can say "copyright infringement" and his face turns into the face of Mickey Mouse.
  • Love Thy Trophy
    • Rod Serling appears at the end of the episode to narrate up a Twilight Zone parody, before being knocked out with a shovel, swung by Brian.
  • A Picture's Worth $1000
    • In the cold opening, Carter Banks fills in for Brian in the absence of his actor, but he has trouble remembering his lines and prompting of the location of the camera.
  • Death is a Bitch
    • After Peter is told by Death to kill the kids from Dawson's Creek, he changes his mind and says to Death on the phone, "If they die, I'll have nothing to watch on Wednesdays", he moves his eyes slowly to the viewers saying nervously, "Other than the fine programs on FOX".
  • Da Boom

Season 2

  • Road to Rhode Island
    • In the musical number, Stewie said "Until we're syndicated, FOX will never let us die", and then said "Please?" toward the camera.
  • Running Mates
    • Peter becomes annoyed with the live studio audience placed in the middle of the street.
  • The Story On Page One
    • After Luke Perry reads Meg's story, we zoom out to Peter's face in front of the scene on television, "singing" the sneaky music while looking at us.
    • Family Guy is listed on a TV Guide.
  • Fore Father
    • After Lois suggests that Peter help Chris get a job, Peter tells the audience that moments like that show why he married her. He then tells the audience to stop watching them since he is about to "do stuff to her."

Season 3

Season 4

  • North by North Quahog
    • Peter and the family discuss the cancellation of Family Guy which occurred between Seasons 3 and 4. Peter lists various shows that FOX must make room for (all of them no longer running by that point), and decides that Family Guy can only return if all of those shows are canceled.
  • Don't Make Me Over
    • At the end of the episode, Peter, Meg, and Lois walk off of a set of the Griffins living room and stand on a stage with all of the actors in the episode. As the audience applauds them, Peter thanks everyone who participated in making the episode possible. Once Showtime At The Apollo comes on, Brian turns off the TV and tells the audience that he has nothing against Apollo being an African American-oriented series and then proceeds to bark at the audience.
  • Brian the Bachelor
    • While watching Chris dance, Herbert raises his eyebrows twice while facing the camera.
  • 8 Simple Rules for Buying My Teenage Daughter
    • Peter looks at the camera twice during his "I can't believe it's not butter" quote.

Season 5

  • Whistle While Your Wife Works
    • In the opening sequence, the fourth wall is broken when we see a camera next to the stairs, and Stewie advises that we cut to the show while Peter rubs his swelling foot.
  • E. Peterbus Unum
    • A college class in the future watches Family Guy and a student asks if the family is able to understand Stewie or not.
  • The Father, The Son, and The Holy Fonz
    • Stewie, at one point, urges the viewer to look at some of the women of Desperate Housewives on ABC, Family Guy's competition in the same time slot, and even waits for five seconds until the viewer switches back.
  • Saving Private Brian
    • After shooting Vern and Johnny dead, Stewie turns to the camera and says "OK, they're dead. Alright? We're not gonna be seeing them again." Later, he tries setting up a cutaway, realizing it's not happening, he hesitatingly finishes talking to Brian about his desertion.
  • The Family Guy 100th Episode Special
    • This whole episode breaks the fourth wall to celebrate the show's 100-episode milestone.
  • Boys Do Cry
    • During the credits, Peter directs his poor-parenting speech gradually from Lois to the camera "I agree, Lois. Like, for instance, if you're watching a TV show and you decide to take your values from that... you're an idiot. Maybe you should take responsibility for what values your kids are getting. Maybe you shouldn't be letting your kids watch certain shows in the first place if you have such a big problem with them, instead of blaming the shows themselves." ending it and the episode with a simple "Yeah..."
  • Love, Blactually
    • Brian and Stewie debate whether Loretta can understand Stewie and a director is heard offscreen saying, "We're filming.". Later when Cleveland runs into Loretta apologizing for betraying him, he looks to the viewer saying "Uh, I'm no meteorologist but I'm pretty sure it's raining bitches."
  • Not All Dogs Go to Heaven
    • At the end of the first act, when Meg becomes a born-again Christian, Peter disappointingly tells the audience that this will be a Meg episode and that nobody would blame them if they changed the channel.

Season 6

  • I Dream of Jesus
    • After Jesus talks to George W. Bush, Peter looks at the audience and says, "Wouldn't it be great if life were like this?"
    • When the family and Jesus arrive at the Paris Hilton Party on the uncensored version, the bouncer asks Peter who he is, his reply is "Peter Griffin from Family Guy."
    • Peter angrily shouts the words of "Surfin' Bird" to the audience in the end of the first act.
  • Back to the Woods
    • After Ghost Johnny plays the piano in Hell, Ghost Vern faces the viewer and says, "You're probably wondering why he's in Hell. Johnny liked little boys."
  • Stew-Roids
    • After Connie is trampled at a party and knocked unconscious, Peter lays on top of her. Annoyed, he looks to the camera and says to the audience, "What are you looking at? It's a cartoon." Then Stewie flies around an outside his bedroom window and lands on the mailbox carefully looking at the camera and says, "And now, here's something we hope you'll really like," in reference to Rocky & Bullwinkle.
    • Believe It or Not, Joe's Walking on Air
    • Peter points out that Dr. Hartman and Carter Pewterschmidt have similar sounding voices, which is a reference to them both having the same voice actor.
    • During one of Peter's cutaway gags about how to take out Hitler he looks to the camera and says "See we had a plan for that all along".
  • Believe It or Not, Joe's Walking on Air
    • Peter and Lois are setting in bed. They turn to each other and say, "I'll start packing!" and start laughing. However, Peter starts laughing in a very exaggerated manner, crawls toward the camera, and laughs directly into it.
  • Peter's Progress
    • King Stewert III sees a promo for 24, a show that used to air on Fox, and gets mad at it for interrupting their show. Later on after seeing Griffin Peterson's act for the talent show, King Stewert III comments that he didn't know that they can rip off a scene from a movie as their act.
  • Padre de Familia
    • After Peter learns that he his actually a Mexican immigrant, he exclaims, "Holy Crap!". They then immediately cut to Peter laughing while standing in front of a purple back drop. He says, "Looks like I got myself in a bind! How will I get out of this one? Stick around." He then sings, "Cause we've got Cleveland, and Quagmire, and Joe, and Mort, and all your Cartoon Pals!".

Season 7

  • Extra Large Medium
    • Stewie discusses a poem by Henry David Thoreau, pointing out the audience's perceived lack of knowledge when they believe most would attribute it to Thorton Melon, a character in the movie Back to School.
  • Big Man on Hippocampus
    • The Adult Swim bumpers shown during commercial breaks were parodied. After Brian says "uh-oh", the bumpers clarify that the viewers are still watching FOX.The fake bumpers remark that you should be watching it on Adult Swim, rather than Fox, because Adult Swim airs less censored versions. Confusingly enough, this scene is played on reruns on Adult Swim as well.
  • April in Quahog
    • After Stewie plays with his action figures, Stewie faces the audience saying that parents who buy children "homoerotic" dolls that the gay son is on the parents.
  • Quagmire's Dad
    • Stewie tries to tell Brian on a phone that there's an alien in a grass skirt juggling torches in the living room but he doesn't listen and hangs up. Soon as the alien is seen, Stewie faces the audience and says "Ahh? An alien in a grass skirt juggling torches. Yeah."
  • Spies Reminiscent of Us
    • Stewie gets knocked senseless and is unable to set up a cutaway. He faces the audience and says "Hey, I wonder what Peter is up to?" to cut to scene to Peter and the guys.
  • Something, Something, Something, Dark Side
    • Han Solo, played by Peter, says he's gonna kiss Princess Leia played by Lois so hard that the "picture's gonna change into something else" and it does.
    • Before Darth Vader, played by Stewie Griffin, tells Luke Skywalker, played by Chris, that he is his father, he looks at the audience and tells them "Spoiler Alert!".
    • Near the end, while Chewbacca, played by Brian and Lando Calrissian, played by Mort Goldman are sitting in the Millenium Falcon, Brian asks Mort why he is wearing Han's clothes. He looks at the camera and states to the audience that in the real movie Lando wears Han's clothes, suggesting the audience sees it.
  • Partial Terms of Endearment
    • Peter calls attention to Family Guy being a show when he threatens to blow up the Family Planning Center to stop Lois from having an abortion. Lois attempts to call his bluff and Peter responds with "You've seen 'Family Guy! You know I would!" Later in the episode, the family is discussing the pros and cons of abortion without reaching a consensus when Peter looks at the camera and says "We had the abortion."
  • Dial Meg for Murder
    • Peter reads a copy of TV Guide in order to know the story of the episode.
  • Ratings Guy
    • Peter has to prompt the correct music when celebrating becoming a Nielsen family.
    • Stewie gets a dig at The Cleveland Show by suggesting they watch the "black version of our show."
    • As Homer Simpson comes in after Peter to the Television Producers Guild to make the same appeal to save television, Peter gets to note that Family Guy finally beat The Simpsons to a storyline.
    • After charging television producers to create several shows like The Office where the cast talk to the camera, one producer actually talks to the camera until chased off by Peter. Peter follows with his own "do you believe what I have to put up with" look to the camera.
    • When Herbert requests Zack and Cody to be shown in their underwear, he gives the camera a thumbs up.
  • Foreign Affairs
    • After the music video, Peter looks at the camera and says "That happened, and we let it happen."
  • The Splendid Source
    • Peter narrates the story to the audience throughout the episode and also reveals that FOX ruined Cleveland's 'surprise' appearance in their promos.

Season 8

  • Excellence in Broadcasting
    • After Brian said that he was moving in with Rush Limbaugh, after Stewie says "Ooh, this is a bad idea. But I guess that FOX has bad ideas, huh?", a promotional bumper for Sons of Tucson shows up and Stewie says to the viewers pointing at the bumper, "Let's all just sit here for a moment and remember that this was a thing."
  • Lottery Fever
    • During the theme song, Peter has to deal with one of the dancers who informs him that she is pregnant and he has been avoiding her. Peter calls for security to have her removed and sheepishly tries to get the theme back on track.
  • New Kidney in Town
    • At Peter's checkup, Dr. Hartman says he saw the "Three Weeks Later" caption.
  • Trading Places
    • At the very end of the episode, Dr. Hartman asks the Griffins what they do "after the screen goes black".
  • Stewie Goes for a Drive
    • After Stewie says "At least I'm not getting stabbed by a random guy on the street" and it starts to rain, he stares directly at the camera and says, "See, it's the exact opposite", then a guy comes and stabs him.
  • Friends of Peter G
    • A drunken Peter calls attention to the "Laugh and Cry" urban legend in the show's theme song.
  • Teigs for Two
    • After Peter sets up a cutaway explaining his other white shirt was ruined while wine tasting at Michael J. Fox's house, he instead appears on a blank screen telling the viewer how they originally wanted to show them the actual scene, but decided not to because "It would make us all sad". He then tells the viewer that they decided to just show the cutaway.
  • Road to Germany
    • When the boys discover they need uranium to return to the present, Brian tells Mort and Stewie that the only place they can go to get the uranium in Europe during WWII is Berlin. When Stewie realizes that Germany was making weapons of mass destruction and asks why America is not doing anything about it, Brian says he does not know. He then slowly turns towards the audience and says "maybe because they don't have any...oil?" and Stewie flinches and claps in support of the burn.
  • Grumpy Old Man
    • When Carter ponders how he'll get around without being able to drive, Peter appears in a chauffeur's uniform only to be told by Lois that they weren't doing that. Later when Carter is playing with the thermostat, Peter looks at the camera and notes that Carter is learning.
  • Call Girl
    • Peter is in the middle of telling the guys about meeting "Classy" when they interrupt him to stop and explain further. Peter apologizes, claiming he thought they were moving ahead a bit to save time.
  • Three Kings
    • Peter is talking to the audience when he told the stories.
    • In the parody of "The Shawshank Redemption", Peter breaks the fourth wall when he says, "Since your Black and I'm White, that's make more a-special for the audience." and looks towards the viewers.
  • Secondhand Spoke
    • Peter asks for an outside shot of the house when Lois and Brian point out that the damages he's done as a result of his smoking are irreversible, but the re-do doesn't work.
  • The Hand That Rocks the Wheelchair
    • Peter, dressed as Meg, acknowledges to the audience that he is stealing Meg's cutaway gag.
  • It's a Trap!
    • When Darth Vader/Stewie sees Roger from American Dad!, he mentions that the show has run out of their own characters for the episode. Later in the episode, after killing Emperor Palpatine/Carter, Vader/Stewie faces the camera and says "That's the power of please kids." At the end of the episode, the Griffins are arguing about Seth MacFarlane and how the show is run.

Season 9

  • Seahorse Seashell Party
    • Meg breaks the fourth wall by pointing out, that if Family Guy would be true, Peter would go to prison.
    • Stewie notes that everyone is on Twitter with his "Stewie Just Said That!"
    • Stewie tells us that to learn more about drugs, we should visit the local library as the guy behind the desk may be selling drugs.
  • Peter Problems
    • During a cutaway in which Peter shops for records, sexual wordplay is greeted with cheers and flowers from the audience. Angela hires a studio audience to do Peter's job after he is fired. When she rehires him and they hug, the studio audience shows its appreciation. Angela looks into the camera and tells the studio audience they are fired.
  • Farmer Guy
    • Arriving to get a farm for the family, Peter tells a farmer that FOX usually calls ahead to help arrange their skits after finding out the price is over $800,000. A few minutes later, the call comes in.
    • After passing along farming tips laced with sexual innuendo, Peter, Chris and Meg take a bow.
  • 200 Episodes Later
    • This whole episode breaks the fourth wall in celebration of it's 200th episode.
  • Forget-Me-Not
    • Stewie sets up a cutaway telling Brian that he is fooling himself like ladies that think their best friends are attractive. When he is proven right he looks at the camera and tells ladies that their friends really are not hot.
    • When Peter, Joe, Quagmire and Brian were trying to figure out who they are Peter thinks that his name might be Earl, which the ending bit of the theme from My Name Is Earl plays. After they hear it Peter acknowledges that he may have made a reference.
  • Cool Hand Peter
    • Peter's ringtone is the theme to The Cleveland Show which Peter acknowledges needs the viewers.
    • During a fantasy of Mardi Gras beads, Quagmire acknowledges that the audience is well aware that his beads are used for anal insertion.
    • While discussing restaurants, the guys make up similar names to avoid actually naming the restaurants, something that Quagmire regards as stupid but necessary since they're on television, but when the guys make up a dumb name for french fries he draws the line claiming they can't copyright the common name.
    • In the end, Peter acknowledges that they've done a wrap-up of what they've learned hundreds of times and just mumbles the cadence, which is picked up by Lois and the family.
  • Screams of Silence: Story of Brenda Q.
    • Peter triggers a cutaway gag about Portuguese and cuts away to a porch of geese, then tells the audience "And we're just getting started."
  • And I'm Joyce Kinney
    • After Lois is forced out of church, Peter explains that the churchgoers are only "random background people… half of them don't even move; the other half just blink."
  • Burning Down the Bayit
    • Quagmire gives the audience a thumbs up after claiming his insurance company refused to pay a claim they judged to be an "act of rod."
  • Quagmire and Meg
    • When Peter and Lois are stuck in a traffic jam, Lois wonders why the traffic is not moving. Peter looks outside the window and realizes that the road ahead is not finished being colored by the animators yet.
  • Thanksgiving With The Griffins
    • When Peter's thought process trips up the show directors on a cutaway, they slip in a cutaway of The Cowardly Lion as Lindsay Lohan's gynecologist.
    • When someone dressed as Kevin comes through the door at the end of the episode Peter remarks by looking back saying we don't have time for that
  • Business Guy
    • In the beginning of the episode, Peter seems to be briefly unaware that they have started filming, so for about four seconds, everyone is silent until he looks at the camera and then says, "Oh, uh, it sure was nice to invite us over to your yacht, Mr. Pewterschmidt."
  • Tea Peter
    • When Carter Pewterschmidt starts laughing maniacally at Tea Party headquarters, Peter shoots nervous glances at the audience.
  • Family Guy Viewer Mail 2
    • In "Fatman & Robin", Stewie sits on the rooftop noting of all the variations of Robin Williams, they couldn't get permission to do Disney's Genie from Aladdin.

Season 10

  • Back to the Pilot
    • Peter looks at the camera setting up a cutaway, the cutaway shows Peter facing the camera and says "Matthew McConaughey is terrible."
  • Chris Cross
    • Peter calls Mike Damone using clips taken from the film Fast Times at Ridgemont High after both he and Lois forget their money on a date. After asking Damone to bring his money, Peter hangs up and notes to the audience that it was the last time they saw Damone.
  • 12 and a Half Angry Men
    • The camera pans from the left side of the jury box to the right side as Peter tells the audience, "I switched seats."
  • The Most Interesting Man in the World
    • After he pulls out his eye and tosses it toward Stewie while he goes into The Drunken Clam, it rolls back underneath of a woman, faces the audience and blinks. Peter explains to the audience that it was a wink, but no one would really know since it is just an eye.
  • Yug Ylimaf
    • Stewie says to Meg, "Oh my God, you're Lacey Chabert." referencing Meg's original voice actress.

Season 11

  • Life of Brian
    • Stewie tells Vinny that he has all of his life's past stories on DVD.
  • Boopa-Dee Bappa-Dee
    • Members of the family file conflicting reports on the applications for American citizenship of working for Family Guy and The Family Guy.
  • Baby Got Black
    • Peter talks to the audience throughout a cutaway as a carpet cleaner for a lesbian.
    • A cutaway shows Tom Cruise as Maverick from Top Gun at a "glory hole" thanking the "pretty lady" on the other side and winking at the camera.
    • During the song, "Thank The Whites", one of the awesome neat wonderful things white people gave to black people was The Cleveland Show.
  • Grimm Job
    • When Stewie and Meg are introduced as the evil stepsisters, Lois comments that Family Guy has quite few female characters to work with.
  • He's Bla-ack!
    • The entire cold opening breaks the fourth wall while talking about all the flaws of The Cleveland Show after Cleveland Brown walks into the Drunken Clam.
    • Also, during the theme song Cleveland comes to tell Mort that he being replaced by him.
  • 3 Acts of God
    • After a line representing a cross-country plane trip explodes in a ball of flame in Kentucky, Peter announces that it wasn't their plane and their line will be along behind it.
    • Peter calls out the audience after making a pedophile joke by noting that if Modern Family had made the same joke they would have been lauded.
  • Christmas Guy
    • Stewie's perpetual age of one is made into a meta-joke when Lois notes that it's his first Christmas, to which Stewie asks "Again?"
    • When the Asian carolers sing "Deck the Harrs", Peter addresses the camera to point out that A Christmas Story was incredibly racist. One of the carolers points out that the movie is "flom not that rong ago."

Season 12

  • Brian's a Bad Father
    • Stewie uses Mike Drunkbeater's catchphrase "Oooo, that dog of mine!" from "Airport '07" and instructs the audience to look him up on the internet.
    • Peter stops to explain that Joe Pesci was considered a tough guy in the 1990s.
  • Chap Stewie
    • Stewie comments to the audience about blowing their minds when he takes Kermit the Frog's place in the bicycle scene in The Muppet Movie.
    • Stewie also explains that a joke is intended for a sick member of the staff.

Season 13

  • The Simpsons Guy
    • At the beginning of this crossover episode between Family Guy and The Simpsons, Chris goes into detail about how cheap and pandering of a gimmick crossover episodes are.
    • Brian notes that they're not allowed to disclose the state, wherein Springfield lies.
    • When Apu makes his first appearance, a live studio audience applause happens. Apu unplugs a live studio audience machine and claims that those things are so annoying.
    • Brian notes that Bart's catchphrase "Eat my shorts!" is way more popular than Stewie's catchphrase, "What the deuce?".
    • In Peter and Homer's cutaway gag, Bob Belcher from Bob's Burgers shows up in their plane. Peter says that because Bob can't fly on his own, he and Homer have to carry him. This is a reference to how Bob's Burgers would never succeed if it wasn't sandwiched between Family Guy and The Simpsons every Sunday night.
    • Additionally, Peter points out that when they let Cleveland fly on his own, he crashed and burned. This was a reference to how Family Guy's spin-off series, The Cleveland Show got canceled.
    • Bart says that Nelson has been bullying him for 24 years.
    • Peter gets snappish with Lois, and blames it from being tired as most of their episodes are only thirty minutes.
    • In court, the characters of Family Guy are labeled as knockoffs of the characters of The Simpsons.
    • Peter and Homer insult each other. Their insults serve as thinly-veiled double entendres for each other's shows.
    • Homer throws a bunch of Emmys at Peter, during their fight and Peter says that it's not fair that he's doing that since he doesn't have any Emmys of his own.
    • Roger Smith from American Dad! appears in Kang and Kodos' ship and says to the camera that he went to summer camp with them.
    • After falling out of the destroyed spaceship, Roger thanks the audience for allowing him a cameo in the crossover, by saying "Bye, thanks for having me!". Right after that, Zoidberg from Futurama also makes a cameo, falling out of the spaceship and saying "And me too!"
    • After their fight ends, Peter and Homer agree to stay a half hour apart, with nothing but a pile of garbage in between them, referencing to their shows being a half hour apart on FOX's animation domination lineup, with nothing but Bob's Burgers separating the two.
  • Bookie of the Year
    • Peter quotes lyrics from the theme song. As Lois chuckles at this, he notes he's been paying attention.
  • Carter and Tricia
    • Carter Pewterschmidt locks Babs away in a mental hospital when he has an affair with Tricia Takanawa. When her situation remains unresolved by the end of the episode, Peter notes that they will simply bring her back as needed.
  • Roasted Guy
    • Peter reveals that the entire setup of a cutaway is a film project of his enabled by his pull on Family Guy, drugging Quagmire into performing. The cutaway is so long that Peter forgets what his former female friends were insulting him about.
  • Jesus, Mary, and Joseph
    • Peter plays with Cherry Chevapravatdumrong's name in the credits to make it say "Chemotherapy Vanguard vCr".
  • Hot Shots
    • When Stewie realizes that Lois will have a starring role in the episode, he reminds the audience that Game of Thrones is on. When she continues her actions later, he believes that Sansa finally shows boob in the episode he is watching.
    • As Lois rants about corporations forcing garbage on children, she eyes a logo for FOX that appears on the screen.
    • Peter announces the end of a cutaway gag as complete.
    • As Lois groans about Sean Penn lecture from "liberal" Hollywood, Stewie points out that the entire episode had been a lecture from liberal Hollywood.
  • Our Idiot Brian
    • A newspaper headline pokes fun at a tasteless Family Guy joke.
    • As Chris travels to a primitive town to spread the word that Brian failed Meg's SAT test, the townspeople are happy that the show won't be another Meg episode.
  • Meg Stinks!
    • When Peter claims he would have rather have been a podiatrist instead of working at the Happy-Go-Lucky Toy Factory, during a cutaway he looks at the camera and claims it isn't a joke.
  • A Lot Going on Upstairs
    • Stewie has a dream about botching the show's theme song and getting benched with all of the other forgotten characters of the show.

Season 14

  • The Woof of Wall Street
    • When Brian expounds on Liberal views of the stock market, Stewie accuses him of reading from a teleprompter, which he denies despite the presence of the teleprompter. When it cuts out, the production team backstage instructs him to improvise which he does by changing the topic.
    • When the guys agree to take over the Drunken Clam for Jerome, Quagmire acknowledges "B story" subplot.
    • After being seen at a factory that turns dogs into protein shakes, a subtitle appears and notes that it really isn't true that Eli Manning is a psychopath, but the episode was written by New England Patriots fans.
  • Passenger Fatty-Seven
    • Peter calls on the animators twice to alter the scene, once to fix his eye, then to change the guys into X-Men characters.
    • During the last few seconds of the episode, Peter directs his eyes toward the camera and claims the flight was Spirit Airlines.
  • The Dating Game
    • Carl acknowledges H. Jon Benjamin's role of Archer.
  • Gronkowsbees
    • Barry Bonds watches Stewie on television when he feeds too many steroids to his bees.
    • Peter complains about Rob Gronkowski interfering with his cutaway gag and demands the show go to commercials.
  • V is for Mystery
    • Brian finds it is difficult to remember his and Stewie's characters of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson.
    • Peter appears in the middle of the episode to assure the audience, that next week, they'll go back to making normal, non-parody episodes.
    • Peter suggests that the show should have done 'Hogwarts' instead of Sherlock Holmes.
  • Cop and a Half-Wit
    • Peter and Joe unzip the show and reveal that Family Guy is actually The Simpsons in disguise.
    • When Chris tries to launch a speech about brain injuries in football, he is drowned out by a promotional plug by the NFL.
  • A House Full of Peters
    • When he is prank-called by Donna, Cleveland cries about once having his own show.

Season 15

  • Emmy-Winning Episode
    • This whole episode breaks the fourth wall.
  • The Finer Strings
    • Stewie decides to move the sappy ending along by pulling a lever to move the plot forward.
  • Nanny Goats
    • When he gets in trouble with Lois, Peter tries to bring about the end of the episode by singing the theme song.
    • Later, Peter explains how Family Guy used Mickey Mouse as "Fair use".
    • When Lois starts to make a fat joke, Peter stops her noting that the show only does jokes from the male point-of-view.
  • Follow the Money
    • Meg tries to get in the last joke or word before the commercial break but is foiled by the announcer.
  • Peter Gets Fired
    • Peter's hosting of this anthology episode repeatedly breaks the fourth wall as he addresses the audience.
  • Cash Meg Ousside
    • Meg leaves the family and Peter wonders if this means she'll be getting her own show. A cutaway shows Meg singing her own rendition of the The Cleveland Show theme song before her series gets immediately canceled before the first episode can even air.
  • HttPete
    • God watches Family Guy on his phone.
  • Are You There God? It's Me, Peter
    • God appears in the show and Peter asks why he's depicted as a white man, as it is a rule that in every work of media after the year 2000, God must be portrayed as a black woman. God mentions that technically because Family Guy came out in 1999, he's been grandfathered in.
  • Family Guy Viewer Mail #3
    • Like with all Viewer Mail episodes, Stewie and Brian break the fourth wall the entire time.

Season 16

  • Don't Trust the D___ in Apartment 23
    • While at Quahog University, Stewie gives the audience a look after explaining a bit of social media to Brian.
    • After Brian tweets to join a protest, he finds that everyone has left, including the animators.
    • Peter does a callback to when the show did Star Wars.
  • Workin' for the Man
    • The episode begins with a parodic recap of the previous episode.
  • Petey IV
    • Peter walks the audience though a cutaway gag reference to the 1989 Polaner All Fruit commercial. He also acknowledges passing along the reference when the episode does a callback to it later.
    • Peter suggests the audience Google Putin's reference to an incident in which baseball player George Brett defecated in his pants.
    • When Vladimir Putin notes that things in Russia are slightly sub-par to things in America, Peter inquires about The Simpsons, only to find out that they only have Family Guy.
  • Crimes and Meg's Demeanor
    • When Peter and Lois find the "set" and themselves upside down before falling to the 'ceiling,' Lois notes that someone must have messed something up.]
  • Send in Stewie, Please
    • Stewie Griffin has the ability to do perfect voice impressions of every other character in the show, who is also voiced by his voice actor, Seth MacFarlane.
  • The Unkindest Cut
    • Peter notes that the camera didn't widen enough to give Seamus the complete picture.
    • Dr. Hartman tries his hand at writing the episode and voices Stewie in a scene.
  • Dog Bites Bear
    • In imitation of Deadpool, Peter mentions that he was a fourth wall breaking superhero and a cutaway shows this.
    • Family Guy Through the Years
    • This whole episode breaks the fourth wall.

Season 17

  • Married ... With Cancer
    • Brian says that due to the heavy censorship of "lame, dying network TV", he's unable to go into detail about the obscene sexual act he and Jess did together.
    • Peter realizes that "555" is not a proper area code, when it comes to phone numbers.
    • A girl gives Brian her number and Brian suspects it's fake, when he sees that it begins with "555".
  • The Five Day Marriage
    • This episode begins with a very meta "Previously on Family Guy" segment, complete with a small dose of self-deprecating commentary on the show.
    • Brian's old apartment manager Lou Spinazola gets cheers from the studio audience when he arrives on the scene and utilizes a new catch phrase. When entering Brian and Jess' apartment, Stewie has to pause and restart his lines when the studio audience interrupts him. When Brian tries to use the catch phrase later, he is greeted with silence as he looks at the camera.
    • When Brian asks for 9-1-1 when Jess collapses from choking, a FOX bumper for the show 9-1-1 appears in the corner of the screen to Brian's frustration. When he calls them out for expanding the 'media empire,' another plug for the show Empire appears. When he asks for the then-canceled show Son of Zorn, he is amused when a 'file not found' sign appears.
  • Dead Dog Walking
    • As a guy gets ready to euthanize Brian, the latter warns him that if he kills him, the internet is going to go into a frenzy. This is a reference to the real-life outrage that happened online, when Brian was killed off the show in "Life of Brian".
    • Jess spontaneously dies during the commercial break as somewhat of a deus/diablos ex machina. In the final act of the show, Lois directly breaks the fourth wall, when she tells Brian that she's sorry that his wife died during the commercial break.
  • Regarding Carter
    • Peter and several of the characters get their own Netflix stand-up comedy specials.
    • Peter shoots at the TV when The Orville comes on and complains that the show interferes with his work on Family Guy, referencing Seth MacFarlane's work on both.
    • After accidentally shooting her father, Lois' notes the various tropes that are occurring that usually mean a character is dying.
    • After Carter recovers but at the loss of his memory, she notes some of the bad things he has done such as closing Vine, which causes the video to loop.
    • There are breaks in the action in the style of Kids in the Hall.
    • Peter ends the show by leading into American Dad!, as he expects the new episode of that show to be coming up next, but Lois reminds him that the show isn't on FOX anymore.
  • Stand By Meg
    • Principal Shepherd notes that there will be plenty of Italian jokes as the episode progresses.
    • Principal Shepherd lists "Family Guy writer" as one of the 'benefits' of the vocational school and Lois says that's a terrible job. A wall with the number "4" written on it is shown getting shattered and a construction worker yells at Principal Shepherd and Lois for breaking the fourth wall after he just finished fixing it (after the previously mentioned fourth wall joke).
    • Stewie touches his ear as if listening to a headset and tells Brian that he has been told they need to speed up the ending.
    • Stewie breaks the fourth wall, to tell the audience goodnight. The physical representation of the fourth wall is shown breaking once again with the construction worker once again, yelling at Stewie for breaking the fourth wall that he just fixed (after the previously mentioned fourth wall joke).
  • Big Trouble in Little Quahog
    • Stewie and Tom Cruise take a bow after telling a bunch of dirty jokes as the audience applauds them and throws them roses.
    • When the Church of Spaceship Beep Boop is accused of torture, kidnapping and extortion, they want a lawyer to sue the show.
  • Pal Stewie
    • Peter tries to set up a cutaway gag but is stopped by Tony Robbins. Irritated, Peter launches the cutaway without the setup and notes that it won't make sense.
    • A father and son watch Family Guy, with the father making note of when Stewie uses an old catch phrase. His son lacks interest in the show, as he's more invested in the newer of more "hip" show of his generation, Rick and Morty. At this point in it's lifespan, Family Guy had been on TV for just over 20 years, making it somewhat of an "old show" that can't keep up with the then 3-year-old, Rick & Morty, which appeals more to the millennial and generation z demographic.
    • Stewie teases Brian at the end of the episode by putting him in a gay marriage, noting that is the kind of silly thing they do at the end of episodes.
  • Griffin Winter Games
    • Through a series of altered scenes from previous episodes, Meg demonstrates that she has been training a long time for the Olympics.
    • Meg also finds herself competing against Lacey Chabert, the original voice of Meg as they both try to tell each other "Shut up, Meg."
    • Cleveland hopes there is time to squeeze in a Jamaican bobsled team joke.
  • Trans-Fat
    • One of the people donating to Peter's Dickstarter was show writer, John Appel.
    • The Belcher Family gets squandered at the end of the episode, where their show is roasted by The Griffin Family. Bob admits that the only reason their show is on the air is because it uses The Simpsons and Family Guy as leverage to stay afloat.
  • Family Guy Lite
    • When Peter struggles to climb up a series of stairs at work, he reminds himself that he does so every week in the theme song. He then sings a few lines before cutting himself off as he believes Stewie's line contains a curse word, referencing to an urban legend that had been surrounding Family Guy in it's first three seasons, suggesting that in the theme song, when Stewie says "Laugh and Cry", he actually says "Effin' Cry".
    • Peter, trapped by the guys in a cellar, promises a spin-off show to the first character who helps him out. He then quickly adds that it won't be Cleveland, due to the fact that Cleveland already had his chance at a spin-off series.
    • Stewie predicts that the show's series finale will feature everyone being able to understand him, which he deems a satisfying conclusion.
  • You Can't Handle the Booth!
    • The entire episode premise is that the cast is recording a DVD commentary of an episode. Things get even more meta when Seth MacFarlane and the other real actors inform the cast that they are fictional constructs.
    • In the episode, Cleveland breaks the fourth wall to tell Joe that they're not going to be following up on the story of Jesus burning down the church because of the secular nature of the show.
    • In the episode, Quagmire corrects Joe's pronunciation of "banister slats". This is a callback to an argument that Stewie and Brian had earlier in the episode (in the commentary) over whether the handrail of the stairs should be pronounced "banister slats" or "baluster slats".
  • Island Adventure
    • Peter declines to take part in the episode because he has gotten "real-life pregnant", using bags of groceries to conceal his new belly.
  • Throw It Away
    • When Meg asks how Peter knows Lois has gone to Mount Asia, Peter replies that the show excised a scene in which he figured it out.
    • Peter says that they can't afford the rights to John Lennon's "Imagine", so they have to sing a public domain parody version instead.
  • Adam West High
    • The episode begins with a live studio audience watching their show.
    • Principal Shepherd says that he likes the episode.
    • The episode ends with a false poll saying that viewers can vote on who they want the new mayor of Quahog to be on FOX.com. Peter assures the audience that this is fake and that the website is just trying to steal their data.
  • Hefty Shades of Gray
    • When Peter gets a job offer from Donald Trump, he pledges to get the writers working on it right away.
  • Trump Guy
    • The show opens with Stewie recording his lines expressing surprise at Peter working for the White House.
    • Several characters, including Brian, Stewie, and Chris take credit for writing various gags in the episode.
    • Trump claims that Bob's Burgers is his favorite show, Peter tells the audience to remember that when the Emmy voting comes.
    • Trump also points out that Family Guy is also a show and that Peter is a poor role model, leading Peter to admit that they are a cartoon.
    • The episode ends with various notes about scandals in the Trump family and administration directed to the audience.

Season 18

  • Disney's the Reboot
    • This episode satirizes Disney's recent purchase of FOX, by having the show undergo a bunch of drastic mock-changes.
  • Absolutely Babulous
    • Babs begins to voice her disgust for Milukawkee's Best, before Carter reminds her that it's one of the show's sponsors. Babs immediately changes her tone and pretends she loves the beer.
  • Brida
    • Peter reads a newspaper titled "Sopranos Reference Lost on Audience".
  • Cat Fight
    • Brian uses the term "squash you like a bug", which gets the TV screen to turn off. It's revealed that a family of bugs is watching the show and the father of the family turned it off because he thought the joke was offensive. The son of the family begs for the dad to turn the TV back on and the dad hesitantly does so, saying that the show is on "thin ice".
    • Peter makes a holocaust joke, which gets the TV to turn off again. The bug father exclaims, "That's it! This show is not for The Bugsteins.", revealing that the bug family is Jewish and the father got offended by that joke too.
  • Short Cuts
    • Peter orders an establishing shot of the next scene to shut Lois up.
    • Peter orders the credits to roll to shut Meg up.
  • Connie's Celicia
    • Meg and Connie break the fourth wall to point out plot holes in the episode.
  • Undergrounded
    • Joe says that he was in Seinfeld, referencing to him being voiced by Patrick Warburton, the same guy who played David Putty.
    • Meg advertises Bad Moms and Bad Moms 2, referencing to her voice actor, Mila Kunis, being the lead actor in both movies. Peter comes up to tell her not to do that in this show, even addressing her as "Mila".
    • When a rumbling sounds in heard, Quagmire worries about what it is and Peter assumes that it's just the movie in the next theater over.
    • Patrick Star from SpongeBob SquarePants is shown to be reading the episode as a storybook at the end. He then uses his platform to break the fourth wall to insult the NFL.
  • Peter & Lois' Wedding
    • Loretta appears during the flashback and Lois asks if she's going to have to do her voice again. This is a reference to how her voice actor, Alex Borstein, also voiced Loretta when her character was still alive and how they killed her off specifically because Alex complained about how strenuous it was to do Loretta's voice.
    • Carter says he can't believe the wedding is just two scenes away.
  • Christmas is Coming
    • Brian tries to explain Meg's orgasm to Stewie, but is reminded that they are owned by Disney, so that they need to be very careful about how they word it.
  • No Giggity, No Doubt
    • Peter lists off tons of characters that came from not only his own show, but also American Dad, The Cleveland Show, and The Orville. He is also surprised to see the show ghosts of the recently deceased Adam West and Carrie Fischer,
    • In a callback to "Brian the Bachelor" when Chris spray painted a garage with "That's enough, John Mayer," Peter graffitis a rock with "More please, John Mayer", noting that they've changed their minds.
  • The Movement
    • Carter tries to get Homer Simpson to work as his baseball team's coach but Homer says that he already got into some wacky adventures that night, referring to how The Simpsons aired their new episode about an hour before the premiere of this episode.
    • Peter calls Meg into the office and tells her that she's getting fired from the show but she will be picked up by American Dad!. Meg complains about having to go to American Dad! but when Peter tell her the only other option is Bob's Burgers, she accepts her fate as an American Dad! character.
    • Cleveland says that there are a lot of coaches from better shows they could have gotten instead of Peter.
    • Meg sighs, when she sees the American flag on the Jumbotron, as it reminds her of her inevitable transfer to American Dad!.
    • When some cartoon birds get crushed to a bloody death under the escalator, Carter says that Disney is certainly not going to be happy with that.
    • Peter asks why the concept of Waquahog couldn't have been used in The Cleveland Show and Cleveland says that this whole episode would have been their Season 5 premiere.
    • The Griffins watch Meg's role on the new American Dad! episode.
  • Heart Burn
    • Peter talks directly to the audiences in the framing scenes of the episode.
    • Peter says that because they're owned by Disney, they get to have Hercules from the eponymous movie, only for a director to tell him that they're still not allowed to use him for some reason. Peter gets pissed off, saying that the painful company merge was worthless if they didn't get to use any of the important characters.
    • Kimi and Peter constantly mention how they dance and have sex in silence because the editors add the music in post.
    • Brian makes the oddly specific statement that he's not going to die in the third-act climax of the movie, which he ends up doing.
    • Over the phone, Kimi begins to tell Peter that she's pregnant only to pause and wait for him to pick up the phone hastily.
    • Chris breaks the fourth wall at the end to say that he got no screen time in the episode and that he's going to use the credits gag to tell his story about American Pie.
  • Baby Stewie
    • Stewie has Brian pass him the censor bar so that he doesn't show his penis on network TV.
    • Stewie and Brian say that this episode's story didn't fill the entire 22 minute time slot, so as filler, they'll be showing a Family Guy short.
  • Rich Old Stewie
    • In the future, Lane Bregen says that he became famous in May, 2020 and says that if people stopped watching TV in April, 2020, his name would be unfamiliar to them. This episode aired in April, 2020.
    • Stewie says that he's not a "family guy", which gets the laugh track to laugh, as he just title dropped the show.
    • When Peter dies, he sees the spirits of all the deceased celebrities who used to work on their show.
    • Brian says that Stewie has been staring at his old man costume for half an hour and Stewie corrects him, saying that it was technically 22 minutes, plus commercials.
  • New Phone, Who Dis?
    • The episode opens with The Griffin Family telling the audience that because they wanted to hear the uncut version of the episode so bad, they've got their wish with this episode.
    • Quagmire corrects Joe's pronunciation of "bannister" as "ballister", which is a callback to an argument Stewie and Brian got into, during the audio commentary of this episode, back in "You Can't Handle the Booth!". Obviously, this same joke happened in the previous episode, but it was harder to hear.

Season 19

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