After seeing a rough cut of a Windows 7 themed episode of Family Guy, Microsoft has axed the promotion/sponsorship over concerns that the subject matter of the episode was far too racy and offensive to be associated with the Windows brand.
Specifically, the themed episode wasn’t your typical Family Guy episode, but was instead geared as a variety show with animation clips interspersed between sketch clips. But whatever you wanna call it, when news broke that Microsoft would be sponsoring the show, the interwebs exploded with disgust and shouts that Family Guy was selling out, and that Microsoft was extremely out of touch. But it looks like we’ll have to save our disgust for another day as jokes about ethnic groups and handicapped individuals were more prevalent and offensive than Microsoft had initially anticipated.
For most of the special, however, MacFarlane and Borstein made typical “Family Guy”-style jokes, including riffs on deaf people, the Holocaust, feminine hygiene and incest.
Such material was apparently a bit much for Microsoft.
“We initially chose to participate in the Seth and Alex variety show based on the audience composition and creative humor of ‘Family Guy,’ but after reviewing an early version of the variety show, it became clear that the content was not a fit with the Windows brand,” said a Microsoft spokeswoman. “We continue to have a good partnership with Fox, Seth MacFarlane and Alex Borstein and are working with them in other areas. We continue to believe in the value of brand integrations and partnerships between brands, media companies and talent.”
Now all you hardcore Family Guy fans have no reason to worry as the show will go on as scheduled, only with Microsoft not participating as a sponsor. We assume, therefore, that we’ll be spared the horror of having to sit through obnoxious cross-promotion clips like the one below.
And in a sentiment that’s been echoed by many already, did Microsoft really have no idea what they were getting into? Do any of them actually watch Family Guy? Jeez!