Attacking Christian Science because it lets little kids die of cancer is the weakest attack ever. South Park went after Scientology, for eff's sake.
I finally realized that I was thinking of Henry, who was the abusive kid who "adopted" Roger in an episode of "American Dad." In that episode, Roger began to feel unloved because he believed that Steve had grown out of him. Drunk and distraught, Roger stumbles into Scotty's back yard, and Scotty takes him in. Scotty was eight, maybe ten years old. But I swear they used the same voice actor for the Scotty in this week's Family Guy, even though the kid was only, I don't know, maybe five or six.
By the time I had sorted all that out, I realized that I was watching a Family Guy episode that existed in order to be critical of Christian Science. And I was like, "Whut."
Attacking Christian Science because it lets little kids die of cancer is the weakest attack ever. South Park went after Scientology, for eff's sake. Now that's a target! But Christian Science?
Everyone hates the fact that Christian Science insists that people not receive medical care. It's like taking an outspoken, high-profile stand against pollution or high movie ticket prices. We're all with you. You don't have to yell. We get it.
I was also distracted by the improbability of the sequence of events that led up to the big reveal. First of all, if a kid is dying from untreated Hodgkin's Lymphoma, he's not going to be showing up at a play date and acting fine. Cancer is excruciatingly painful, and - not to state the obvious - but a Christian Science kid is not going to be receiving morphine from the pain.
Having lost several family members to cancer, I felt that the show glossed over this aspect of the disease because it was inconvenient to the plot. They needed to have Scotty in play, and in order for that to happen, he had to feel fine most of the time. Well, he wouldn't. But I guess a show where a kid is literally screaming and puking and crying and dying from cancer wouldn't be funny. It would be more accurate - and a more effective critique of Christian Science - but maybe that level of accuracy and cynicism is more like South Park territory.