Spoiler warning for anyone who didn't yet watch Family Guy's Season 17 finale.
Even though Hollywood icon Adam West died back in June of 2017, Family Guy only just got around to addressing the aftermath of the death of character Mayor Adam West. To be expected, that tribute of sorts was delivered in some of the most irreverent and weirdest ways possible. Let's take a look at some of them now.
The Disruptive Audience Member
Kicking things off with a "filmed before a live studio audience" gag, Family Guy brought in Julie Hagarty's still-mourning widow Carol West for a dinner scene, in which the conversation about (Mayor) Adam West's death kept getting interrupted by a rowdy viewer in the crowd who loudly has the hots for Carol.
After a few outbursts, the off-the-screen action included the offending non-gentleman getting taken away by show security, as he shamefully admitted he knew he was in the wrong for his catcalls. The audience cheered. I feel the late Quahog mayor would have also approved.
The Dedication Video
Within the same opening scene, Peter introduced a "special video dedication reminding people of how great Mayor West was." Such a description might have one thinking that fans would get a montage filled with shots of the animated Adam West doing kooky things throughout his many years as a Family Guy mainstay. That line of thinking is half on-the-money, but not completely. Check it out.
Who'd have thought that Peter would have turned things around to make the video about himself? Oh, right, everyone would. Sure enough, Mayor West's past moments soon gave way to recordings of Peter trying to reach viral fame through clips of hard-to-make basketball shots. The last one ends with an elderly person's presumed death, so the show once again veered left of respect to make a joke.
Renaming the High School
Family Guy chose a smart way to keep Adam West's name around for however many more seasons are left: it renamed its high school to Adam West High. The sign dedication was also undercut by strife, as celebrity unveilers Chip and Joanna Gaines (not voiced by the actual husband and wife) had relationship squabbles in the moment.
The first scene in the episode also addressed this fact by taking some potshots at the former high school namesake, James Woods. Brian and Peter shared jabs about Woods' provocative Twitter feed, among other things, in one of two moments that markedly railed on conservative celebrities. The other target was Fox News giant Sean Hannity, though the Family Guy characters didn't joke about his politics, but rather just a picture of Hannity's face.
Choosing a New Mayor (Or Not)
Without Mayor Adam West leading things in Quahog, the obvious solution was for the town to find a new mayor, even if it wasn't exactly clear where it was best to look. Things looked particularly grim whenever Quagmire took it upon himself to enter the mayoral race.
Though the situation didn't exactly brighten up whenever Brian became Quagmire's main political opposition, largely due to the number of pancake breakfasts Adam West would brag about. (I mean, that's at least 8-10 chocolate chicp pancake breakfasts.) After a particularly shoddy debate in which Quagmire totally duped Brian, and circumstances that left them presumed dead to the outside world, the election was called off. As such, Quahog still doesn't have a mayor.
And while one scene mentioned that fans could go and vote on a new mayor at Fox's website – which inspired some amusing back-and-forth dialogue about it being a trick to track people's data – it doesn't appear that it was a legitimate contest. For now, it's completely unclear what'll happen to the mayor role in Season 18. Maybe some of the characters from Veep can run since that show is completely over now.
As Brian and Quagmire were on the brink of death after their bus accident – that wasn't so much an accident as just the aftermath of Brian's errant throwing abilities – Brian got a helping hand from the universe. For a second, he thought that helping hand came from a smiling Mayor Adam West. However, it was revealed that Brian was really just hanging onto a tree branch on the side of the mountain. A tree branch that didn't look anything like Adam West. It was a weird moment.
After Brian dismantled his own body by jumping into a swimming pool that didn't exist, the episode truly closed out on some actual live-action video footage of Adam West himself asking people to vote for him to be the mayor of their home towns. The clip was part of the promotional footage for the mobile game Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff, so it wasn't new or anything, but it was still a lovely way to cap off an episode that was quick to divert from sincere tributes elsewhere in the episode.
So here's a final R.I.P. to Adam West, both the actor and the animated mayor. We hardly knew ye, though everything we learned, we cherished.
Family Guy is currently finished with Season 17, though Fox has already confirmed that Season 18 of the happily offensive comedy will be arriving this fall.
Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.
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