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Family Guy episode
Brian and Stewie promoting the legalization of marijuana.
Episode no. Season 7
Episode 12
Written by Patrick Meighan
Directed by Julius Wu
Production no. 6ACX16
Original airdate April 19, 2009[1]
Episode chronology
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"Not All Dogs Go to Heaven" "Stew-Roids"
Family Guy (season 7)
List of Family Guy episodes

"420" (formerly known as "Episode 420") is the twelfth episode of the seventh season of Family Guy, which originally aired on April 19, 2009, on Fox. The title is a reference to the term "420" used in cannabis culture. The episode first aired one day before April 20 (denoted as 4/20 in U.S. date notation), which is a counterculture holiday when people celebrate the consumption of cannabis.[2] In the episode, Brian is arrested for drug possession, so he launches a campaign to legalize marijuana. Mayor West passes the law.



Peter, Brian, Cleveland, and Joe become annoyed when Quagmire obsesses over a cat he just got, spending more time with it than with them. While Quagmire is out, the guys decide to shave the cat as a prank, but it backfires when Peter accidentally kills the cat with a straight razor. Peter and Brian go to hide its body with the intent of telling Quagmire it ran away. They are pulled over by the police, who ignore the blood stains on Peter's shirt (and drunk driving), but arrest Brian violently and without question when they find him in possession of a quarter ounce (or 7 grams) of marijuana. Brian is bailed out by the family and put on probation for drug use. Joe arrives to demand a urine sample just after Brian started smoking some marijuana. Brian attempts to use Stewie's urine, only to be caught by Lois, who tells him that if he's going to sink that low to get away with smoking marijuana, then "it's time to change". Instead of quitting, Brian decides to start a campaign to legalize marijuana in Quahog. He and Stewie perform a full length enthusiastic musical number in a park about the joys of smoking and the virtues of marijuana, set to the tune of "Me Ol' Bamboo" from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and soon after the entire town rallies behind them in their cause.

Mayor West passes a law to legalize marijuana, and everyone starts smoking it. Brian points out that the town has improved as a result, with a decrease in crime, increase in productivity, and phenomenal ratings for Doctor Who. However, Lois's father, Carter, is losing money in the timber industry now that hemp is being used to manufacture many things (Brian had previously recounted the history of how William Randolph Hearst had promoted anti-marijuana laws in the 1930s for the same reason), and he bribes Peter with a yo-yo to help him produce videos for an anti-marijuana campaign. Lois, however, points out that their methods are uninspired, explaining that Brian only succeeded because he was passionate about legalizing marijuana. Carter decides to bribe Brian to join his cause by publishing and shipping his novel, Faster Than the Speed of Love, and putting an Oprah sticker on it. Brian resists at first, but Stewie, knowing how bad the novel will turn out, suggests he at least sing a song about the evils of marijuana. Brian reluctantly complies (although only the last line of the song, "And that's why pot is bad", is heard), and marijuana is "re-illegalized" (as Mayor West puts it). Brian's novel is shipped, but is critically panned and doesn't sell a single copy at all. Brian laments that he sacrificed everything he believed in for nothing, but Lois says that by getting marijuana banned, he at least did something. The episode ends with Quagmire at the Griffins' doorstep saying he has raised the reward to $50 for finding his cat, which he still believes to be missing, no questions asked. Peter nonchalantly takes the $50, admits he killed his cat, and slams the door on him.

Ratings and reception

7.40 million viewers watched the episode. According to Zap2it, this episode received a 4.3/6 Nielsen Rating.[3]

Ahsan Haque of IGN rated the episode an 8.5/10, commenting:

"Overall, this episode worked out quite well mainly due to the superb musical number. The storyline was also pretty cohesive and there were very few truly random jokes thrown in here, which is always appreciated."[4]

Brian was awarded the 2009 Stoner of the Year award by High Times due to this episode, marking the first time an animated character received the honor.[5]


External links

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