The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

02 October 2010

Exclusive Interview: Rush Limbaugh Answers Critics Over Family Guy Starring Role


Rush On Why He Agreed To
Family Guy Starring Role


While Rush Limbaugh is more than accustomed to incoming flak from the left, criticism from the right is a bit less common. A starring role in an episode of Family Guy, however, has turned the usual order of things upside down.

Due to air Sunday October 3, the plot centers around Limbaugh's "conversion" of far-left Brian, which subsequently goes awry:

When Brian learns that Rush Limbaugh (guest-voicing as himself) is going to be at the Quahog Mall for a book-signing, he decides to go down there and give him a piece of his left-wing mind. But when Rush unexpectedly comes to Brian’s rescue, Brian has a political change of heart in the all-new “Excellence in Broadcasting” episode of FAMILY GUY airing Sunday, Oct. 3 (9:00-9:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX

While this does have the potential to reach a large new audience not normally part of Rush's demographic, some conservatives are less than happy about his association with the Hollywood left. From Daniel Foster at National Review Online:

It is to Mr. Limbaugh’s credit that he can make fun of himself. But Seth MacFarlane, the whiskey-soaked Dada creator of Family Guy, is responsible for more sophomoric cartooning than the combined patrons of America’s truck stop and dive bar bathrooms. His shows are full of misanthropic, misogynist, racist, and anti-Semitic jokes admixed with just enough ironic distance and liberal cheerleading to stave off the blanket condemnation of the PC Left.

So, as someone who has in the past suggested that if MacFarlane really cared about liberal causes, he’d stop associating himself with them, I can only look at the Limbaugh-MacFarlane mash-up with a wary eye.

With that in mind, your Radio Equalizer asked Limbaugh for insight into his decision to appear on a notorious lefty program:

RADIO EQUALIZER: Rush, I'm getting emails asking why you're appearing "on that disgusting program."

My answer to one: He's reaching out to millions of young people who've only heard horrible things about him. He needs to lure them to the talk radio medium or we will eventually be winding it all down for good. These kids live in a world where that kind of content is all around them. The only way to reach out is to enter their environment long enough to invite them to our side.

RUSH LIMBAUGH: Exactly right. (It's the) same reason I did the Playboy interview in 1993. Same reason I took the Rush to Excellence Tour to a Vegas hotel. It's called crossover.

And this episode is not disgusting. It's hilarious. It's a CARTOON.

RADIO EQUALIZER: Did you get a lot of flak at the time for the Playboy interview? Similar to this? A question I've received: "why's he helping lefty Hollywood types who hate us?"

RUSH LIMBAUGH: Yes, I did. And on other occasions I can't recall. This is my third Family Guy but first as the star. Seth MacFarlane doesn't hate me. Or Andrew Breitbart, who he met on Maher's show and really liked.

Besides, it was a new career challenge, a new experience. It was a LOT of work. I sing, and I'm deaf! Getting the melody down was next to impossible. It was challenging on many levels. And it is an unpredictable thing to do. It will stymie critics. I'm a performer. This was fun. Seth wants to do even more.

Seth was among the FIRST to reach out to me in Hawaii when I had that heart scare. I am not helping the Hollywood Left. His show is going to be on the air regardless what I do.

BUT, the better way to look at this is that they bent for me. I did not bend to them. It's not as though I endorse or support libs on this show. The other way around. A huge lib character becomes a conservative.

RADIO EQUALIZER: Thanks, Rush, we'll be watching.


  • Anxiously await this one. Answer honestly: would Nancy Pelosi or Harry Reid be able to make fun of themselves like this? I rest my case.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 02 October, 2010 14:13  

  • As a true conservative I stopped listening to Rush a long time ago. Rush is a neocon. Neocons love big government if it is for pointless foreign wars and feeding the military Industrial Complex and giving welfare to those sociopaths in Israel.

    We need someone like Joe Sobran - RIP.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 02 October, 2010 21:29  

  • I would love to see an episode where Rush becomes a temporary liberal. And then just can't do it. lol

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 03 October, 2010 09:24  

  • anon "As a true conservative I stopped listening to Rush a long time ago. Rush is a neocon. Neocons love big government if it is for pointless foreign wars and feeding the military Industrial Complex and giving welfare to those sociopaths in Israel."

    Correct my memory, but when did Rush Limbaugh ever advocate for "bigger government". Rush has never been a new age conservative. He's always been a traditional paleo conservative. So I don't know exactly where you are getting your information from. If Rush was truly a neocon, he would be bashing the tea party movement instead of fiercely defending it like he has been doing from the start. If Rush was a neocon, he would have taken Karl Rove to task over his attacks on Tea Party candidate Christine O'Donnell. Limbaugh doesn't lie Rino Republicans like Collin Powell, Arnold Schwartnegger, Susan Collins, Olympia Snow, David Brooks etc. These are simply the facts. Oh and if Limbuagh was was neo con, he would have supported John McCain instead he as trashing him from the primaries through the elections.

    By Blogger Alpha Conservative Male, at 03 October, 2010 11:24  

  • Family Guy has a history of bigoted humor, not to mention Seth McFarlane has an obsession with bashing the physically disabled. Hell, McFarlane doesn't even need the character of Joe Swanson on the screen to mock the hardships the family members of the disabled endure.

    Rush isn't going to win over any converts by appearing on the show.

    By Anonymous HP_Loveshaft, at 03 October, 2010 12:51  

  • They make fun of conservatives and have Brian go on liberal spiels like it's the truth, so this is a good start.

    By Blogger J, at 03 October, 2010 14:03  

  • Saw it--pretty funny though Seth gets a lot of hits from the Left in. He does imply Pelosi does crack and shows her doing it...a Scooby Doo spoof has McCain (see as a far right wacko by the Left, a RINO by the
    right) and Rush as mystery solvers
    and they find Barney Frank was the villain--and he would have succeeded if it weren't for those wascally wepublicans!

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 03 October, 2010 22:25  

  • I like to accuse the Left of being largely humorless, but... judging by some of the criticism of Rush for this, and MacFarlane in general, some on the Right seriously need a funny bone.

    By Blogger Jay, at 03 October, 2010 23:55  

  • I do love Rush, but how is he able to explain the conservative viewpoint when the message is being controlled by liberal Seth MacFarlane. There were a few good points, but the rest was liberal parody and hyperbole of what a conservative is.

    By Anonymous verbatim, at 04 October, 2010 01:35  

  • According to Broadcast and Cable magazine and "Family Guy" dropped from a 4.3 for its one-hour-long season premiere a week ago to 3.9 last night (10/03). Among those NOT ewatch "FG": Rush Limbaugh. (Futbol on NBC.)

    By Anonymous Laurence glavin, at 04 October, 2010 18:15  

  • Rush himself said the football competition was rough. I'll bet more people see it on YouTube and than viewed it on Fox last night.

    But isn't that how all of network television is headed anyway?

    By Blogger Brian Maloney, at 04 October, 2010 18:18  

  • I'm a fiscally conservative and socially liberal. Family Guy is the funniest show on TV. The show with Rush wasn't one of the best, but still pretty funny. One of the funniest parts was when Brian confronts Rush and Rush asks him if he's ever even read anything he's written. Brian says something to the effect of, No but I've read a lot of what others have said about you...

    By Blogger Unknown, at 04 October, 2010 19:30  

  • I like Family Guy. I think it has flashes of comic brilliance, though I think that outside of quick, jabbing gags the writing is lackluster. It drowns when compared to South Park's depth in the realm of character development and social satire. At least part of this is due to the fact that McFarlane usually limits his attacks against the left, whereas South Park pulls no punches and attacks everyone, attacking the left only slightly more.

    I saw this Rush episode and it was great. Both sides endure small assaults, but it all seems to be in fun.

    The message is awesome. When it comes to many issues, socially and fiscally, the right won't agree with the left, the left won't agree with the right, and the fence-sitters will often sway as the winds blow. That doesn't mean that the right has to hate the left, or vice versa.

    It's really refreshing that Seth encouraged Rush to do it, and that Rush is capable of stepping outside his image to create some bi-partisan humor.


    By Blogger The Political Palaver, at 13 October, 2010 15:02  

  • The idea that anyone believes South Park attacks the left "slightly more" is hilarious. South Park points out society's discrepancies, but it is almost always in favor of democratic ideas.

    I've seen probably every episode and haven't found a single episode that supports the idea that they support the right more. They have episodes about pro immigration, pro gay and transgender rights, and make fun of almost every single religion.

    I have always wondered how Republicans interpreted South Park because so many like the show despite how much the show completely bashes on almost every idea that they believe. If anything South Park favors fans who enjoy comedy mixed with social issues and not any left or right wing.

    By Blogger zeppelinfancb, at 01 July, 2013 01:31  

  • OMG - FAMILY GUY - You people take things way too seriously. Get a sense of humor. I doubt this will even make it to the blog. ITS ON THE EDGE COMEDY! The reason you are do irritated with it is the exact reason it's funny. It's just a cartoon, not a political figure! I am both Jewish and a paraplegic from the war, and I am not insulted in any way. Read the credits. There are a ton of Jewish people on the staff. It's meant to cross the line. I feel sorry for some people that take every thing they see so seriously they can't enjoy life. It's just plain silly comedy. There were so many famous actors in the early days of Hollywood that smacked women. Should we never watch those classics? I don't agree with hitting a woman, and never have, but that does not stop e from watching those movies because you take it in context with a grain of salt. Relax a bit people. If you can't make fun of yourself, then you are too uptight.

    By Anonymous GG, at 16 June, 2014 10:59  

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