While America watched in horror as the Boston Marathon‘s finish line exploded into blood and chaos, conservatives were busy spinning conspiracy theories. The latest — from Alex Jones’ Info Wars — claims that a recent Family Guy episode predicted the attacks. Aired on March 17th, “Turban Cowboy” can seem eerily prescient … but only when Info Wars splices together two unrelated clips so one immediately follows the other, as they do in their video “news report.” According to Paul J. Watson’s written summary of the video:
An episode of the popular show Family Guy which was first aired less than a month ago eerily predicted aspects of the Boston Marathon attack, depicting the main character detonating two bombs in addition to winning the marathon by killing the rest of the participants. […]
The image of Peter killing the Boston Marathon runners even shows blood and missing limbs, a chilling reminder of the very real scenes of carnage we saw yesterday.
The video shows a cartoon version of sports personality Bob Costas interviewing Family Guy’s main character, Peter Griffin. Costas says, “I’m Bob Costas, here with Boston Marathon winner Peter Griffin. Peter, how did you do it?” The video immediately cuts to a later clip from the same episode, which shows Peter in Muslim garb accidentally blowing things up with his cell phone. Removed from their original contexts, the clips show Peter confessing to accidentally causing the explosions at the Boston Marathon’s finish line. This, of course, has no relation to the actual plot of the show.
This morning, the show’s creator, Seth McFarlane angrily tweeted:
The edited Family Guy clip currently circulating is abhorrent. The event was a crime and a tragedy, and my thoughts are with the victims.
— Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane) April 16, 2013
Sure, Watson added a disclaimer that “It is important to note that the video shows two clips from different points of the show edited together.” Obviously, he must have run the article by Info Wars’ legal department. But, as with all disclaimers, people clearly aren’t meant to see it. Otherwise it would appear in the first paragraph and have a jazzier ring to it. Already the side-by-side video clips have gone viral on You Tube, with brendon87’s version alone getting almost 110,000 views so far.
But wait … the plot
sickens thickens. Since I wrote this, InfoWars removed the video I originally posted, and claimed that YouTube forced them to remove it … even though YouTube let all the other versions of the spliced “Family Guy” episode to stay up.
So here’s the new video:
WAKE UP, PEOPLE! Family Guy is just a CARTOON, for pete’s sakes! Okay, so it’s a really funny and frequently offensive cartoon that often makes sly references to pop culture and current events. But it’s still just a cartoon. In the real episode, “Turban Cowboy,” Peter Griffin takes up sky diving, and winds up in the hospital, where he befriends a Muslim who turns out to be part of a terrorist plot to blow up a bridge in Griffin’s bucolic New England town. Peter’s new friend Mahmoud programs Peter’s cell phone to blow up stuff when Peter calls him, and the usual politically incorrect, slapstick hilarity ensues.
The first clip comes from a scene in which Peter jumps out of the plane, goes into an exhilarating free-fall, and happily shouts “Holy crap, this is awesome! I haven’t felt like this since I won that marathon!” Peter then has a flashback of himself driving down Boylston Street, running down Boston Marathon contestants, crossing the finish line with a trail of blood and terror in his wake, and appearing on TV with Costas, who replays the footage and asks how he won the Boston Marathon — as shown in the above image.
Bob Costas: I’m Bob Costas, here with Boston Marathon winner Peter Griffin. Peter, how did you do it?
Peter: Bob, I just got in my car and drove it. And when there was a guy in my way, I killed him.
Okay, so that’s really tasteless and disturbing, but it doesn’t show Peter plotting the Boston Marathon explosions. Since the Family Guy characters live in a small Rhode Island town not far from Boston, and the Boston Marathon’s a big event for New Englanders, it’s perfectly natural that the screen writers would reference the race.
The second clip, as shown in the above image, shows Peter back in Rhode Island at the local dive bar with his pals, sporting Muslim garb. Quagmire and Joe ask him to stop calling Mahmoud, because every time he tries, something explodes in the background:
Joe: Peter, I think you’ve joined a terrorist sleeper cell.
Peter: What? That’s crazy. Look, I’m gonna call Mahmoud right now on this cell phone he gave me. He’ll tell me
[Dials phone and puts to his ear as an explosion is heard in background]
Peter: Damned phone’s busted. Maybe I dialed wrong.
[Puts phone to ear and another explosion and screams heard in the background]
Quagmire: Peter, please stop trying to call Mahmoud.
Once again, the clip shows how Family Guy‘s humor is often in poor taste. Plus it’s behind the times. Portraying Muslims as terrorists is so-o-o-o-o 2001. But it certainly doesn’t prove that McFarlane and the other writers from “Turban Cowboy” were aware of the bombs that would explode in Copley Square four weeks later. As usual, public figures on the right have nothing constructive to offer America. While America tries to make sense of the carnage, Alex Jones and his fellow conservatives spin stupid conspiracy theories. To see what everyone’s talking about, you can watch the “Turban Cowboy” episode for free on Hulu.
|Elisabeth Parker is a writer, Web designer, mom, political junkie, and dilettante. Come visit her at ElisabethParker.Com, “like” her on facebook, “friend” her on facebook, follow her on Twitter, or check out her Pinterest boards. For more Addicting Info articles by Elisabeth, click here.|