I think the true tragedy of “Family Guy” isn’t that Peter Griffin adversely effects every life he comes into contact with, but that Meg is going to have a powerful effect on the future world.
She is a fucking wrecking ball.
The underlying message behind “Family Guy”–to my always “seeking a reason why” brain–is that the Griffin children are doomed to be figures of tragedy.
Stewart Gilligan “Stewie” Griffin — A genius baby that acts out on the blatant hostility in his household, he grows up to be a mediocre man-child until he actively changes the course of his life. If his baby-self never time traveled to the future, he would have wasted all of his potential due to a crippling fear of death. With the time change, there’s a possibility at this point that he could go either way with his inventions: saint or sinner. Unless he falls in love and decides to live a normal everyday life.
Christopher Cross “Chris” Griffin — By turns receives praise and recriminations from his father. “My one beautiful child”-type stuff to needle at the other kids, interspersed with derisive commentary and physical violence. Seemingly actively reviled by the bulk of his schoolmates for his bad haircut and unwashed state, there have been several attractive characters that have shown interest in him, proving that he has the potential to find a true happiness if he overrides his attraction to overbearing women and refuses to follow ANY advice his father gives him about the treatment of a relationship partner or a friend.
Megan/Megatron “Meg” Griffin — At the beginning of the series, she is a sweet and malleable girl that gradually sours into the Meg we know today. Constantly ridiculed by her parents and used as the whipping boy of her family, she is by turns self-conscious of her looks and aggressively sexual with her approach toward partners of interest. If she doesn’t end up returning to prison for sexual or physical assault, she is an intelligent girl that lacks educational support from her family. Which is why we’ll be coming back to her.
Lois Patrice (Pewterschmidt) Griffin — Born into a family of wealth, she was given every material thing she wanted, but was denied the love of her parents. From my view, it looks like her mother is a distant socialite and her father is a cruel and heartless Republican businessman. As a result, Lois glomped onto Peter as the first truly open person she’s come across–he is what he is, warts and all–while her sister Carol bounced around from marriage to marriage, always looking and not quite finding love. Lois is both an enabler and an aggressor, her character having progressed from a stern mother keeping her family in some semblance of order to yet another source of chaos for her children.
Peter Griffin — A simple-minded man with a streak of cruelty and an odd, literal cunning. Classified as mentally disabled in the 4th season, he takes his diagnosis as an excuse to do every depraved thing he wants with the expectation of being forgiven due to his condition. After the episode, things basically go back to the way they were, though his diagnosis is mentioned in several later episodes.
Peter is the main character of the show as he is the guiding force of the family. He is, quite literally, “the Family Guy.” Without him, his children would not have been born, Brian would not have been taken into the Griffin household, and the future of Peter’s fictional world might have been completely different.
Because from where I’m sitting? Meg is going to destroy them all.
Allow me to explain:
In the course of the show, Meg has:
- joined a suicidal cult
- physically assaulted numerous characters
- kidnapped and attempted to sexually assault Brian
- attempted to have a boy rape an unconscious Chris
- planted a gun on Bonnie Swanson so she’s arrested at the airport
- possibly killed her aunt in a wrestling show with a folding chair
- trained to be an Olympic biathelete (skiing and rifle shooting)
- been sexually predatory toward house robbers
- beaten up a man that crashed into the car she was driving
- mentioned strangling cats
- taught Chris how to poison squirrels
- made out with Chris
- expressed homophobia
- expressed white nationalist sentiments
- received mail as part of a group that yearly “fucks up” the Anne Frank house
- shown incredible talent playing the saxophone, drums, and cello
- displayed an amazing ability to whistle
- pretended to be a rich heiress and left Brian and Stewie with $18 million dollars worth of debt
- said she likes to pull carp out of the pond to suffocate them
Constantly bullied by her family, Meg has incredible physical capability. She has shown raw talent in numerous fields and can speak in multiple languages and play multiple musical instruments.
Leaving aside the whole “being a Russian sleeper agent” thing, on her own Meg has the greatest potential for destruction than anyone else in her family. Because while Stewie could wipe out all life on Earth, Meg has it in her to warp society.
She has been shown to have a way with words–to the point that Chris used her words to win an essay contest–and while she doesn’t have a personable nature of her own, I could see her as the take no prisoners personal assistant of a horrible politician. If they had her loyalty, I don’t think there’s a limit to what she would do.
She went super hardcore Christian, and immediately people were following her example, which resulted in book burning and Brian having to burst her religious fervor with one of his speeches.
The only thing that saved the world from Evangelical Meg was a dog.
Treated badly by not just her family but nearly everyone in her life, Meg has the potential for both great and terrible things. She has an indomitable will, that when shoved down strikes back at everything standing in her way, even those simply trying to live their everyday lives. With a bit of aim, she could destroy everything in her path.
And that’s kind of terrifying.
Though the show is called “Family Guy,” I think it’s the story of Meg. What makes and shapes her into who she is and what she becomes. Because if someone gives her a bit of love and attention, she’s willing to do anything to keep that favor. Even kill.
She has the same gift as Peter to get what she wants. And as the series progresses, she seems to only lose more and more of that original sweetness.
It feels like “Family Guy” is the decades long origin story of Meg.
I’m both terrified and excited to see what she will become. I have always loved fictional drama. If she were real, I’d run the other way.