But before we talk about whether or not you have heard about the bird, let me just say that this episode has one of my most, and one of my least favorite moments. And that they occur just moments apart.
My favorite scene is a throwaway gag at the beginning of the episode. The Griffins are at a 1950's diner, and when Cleveland tries to join them, he is greeted with a fleet of riot cops armed with fire hoses and savage police dogs. I think about this scene whenever I hear someone reminiscing about how wonderful the 1950's were, what a golden era when everything was wonderful. Sure, if you were white!
My least favorite scene is when Peter is negotiating with the waiter for the "Surfin' Bird" record. Peter asks if the waiter will take sex with his daughter in exchange. The waiter asks who his daughter is, and Peter casts his gaze past Meg, pointing out some random woman at the diner.
Waiter: Okay, I'll do her. But can you tell her to cry and beg me to stop?
Peter: I think that can be arranged.
That's pretty horrible, even for Family Guy.
Anyway! "Surfin' Bird"! So popular that it has received several call-backs in later episodes. Would I be churlish if I pointed out that you can buy "Surfin' Bird" as an MP3 at both Amazon and iTunes? And that this episode, which aired in the 2008-2009 season, should have known that. It kind of undercuts the thing where Brian and Stewie buy up and destroy all the "Surfin' Bird" albums in Quahog. But it's still funny.
"Boy am I going to enjoy this meal! Not like last night, when I didn't have time to poop before the guests arrived."
Lois: You know, kids, there's a lot of history here! These 50's diners were very popular in the 1980's!
Peter: Look at this place! They don't serve any of this 1950's food anymore! Hamburgers, French fries, Cokes… you kids don't know what I'm talking about!
God, cranky from having quit smoking: Ellen! Why is there a pen cap but no pen?
Jesus, to George W. Bush: I heard what you were saying… you know nothing of my work. How you ever got to be president of anything is totally amazing.
Peter: Really? It was my understanding that everyone had heard. Brian: Heard what? Stewie: Brian, DON'T!