The Griffin family has suffered a major loss. A main character was killed off on the Sunday, Nov. 24 episode of Family Guy. (Warning! Spoilers below.)
Peter, Lois, Chris, Meg and Stewie have had to say goodbye to their beloved dog, Brian. The family's alcoholic pet, voiced by creator Seth MacFarlane, was hit by a car while playing a game of street hockey with Stewie.
The "Life of Brian" episode featured Brian saying farewell to his family as he lay dying on an operating table. "You've given me a wonderful life," he said. "I love you all." His best friend, toddler Stewie (also voiced by MacFarlane), attempted to save Brian's life by rebuilding a time machine he previously destroyed, but was unsuccessful. In order to help Stewie cope with Brian's death, the family got a new dog named Vinnie, voiced by Tony Sirico.
While Stewie may be moving on, Family Guy fans are having a harder time dealing with the loss of Brian. One viewer tweeted at the show: "Don't understand the necessity of killing off such a major character like Brian when he's been there since day one. Shameful."
Executive producer Steve Callaghan explained to E! News, however, why the Fox animated sitcom decided to kill off Brian. "This was an idea that got pitched in the writers room and it sort of caught fire, and we thought it could be a fun way to shake things up," he said. "It seemed more in the realm of reality that a dog would get hit by a car, than if one of the kids died."
Callaghan also said he wasn't worried about how fans would react to Brian's death. "Our fans are smart enough and have been loyal to our show for long enough, to know that they can trust us," he said. "We always make choices that always work to the greatest benefit of the series."