Francine's Flashback

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"Francine's Flashback"
American Dad! episode
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 4
Directed by Caleb Meurer
Brent Woods
Written by Rick Wiener
Kenny Schwartz
Production code 1AJN05
Original air date May 15, 2005
Episode chronology
← Previous
"Stan Knows Best"
Next →
"Roger Codger"
American Dad! (season 1)
List of American Dad! episodes

"Francine's Flashback" is the fourth episode of the first season and the fourth overall episode of the animated comedy series American Dad!. It aired on Fox in the United States on May 15, 2005, and is written by Rick Wiener and Kenny Schwartz and Matt Weitzman and directed by Caleb Meurer and Brent Woods.[1]

In the episode, after forgetting their anniversary, Stan arranges to have the last 20 hours of Francine's memory erased, but a bungling technician accidentally erases 20 years, making Francine think she's a wild and carefree teenager from 1985. Meanwhile, a popular girl will only date Steve if someone goes out with her ugly best friend, Jewel -- who finds a mate in a reluctant Roger.


Despite Francine's hints, Stan completely forgets their anniversary, only remembering that it was time for the CIA's annual fishing trip. When he finally remembers, he panics and brings Whitney Houston home for a private performance, in exchange for giving her a cocaine fix. Francine does not buy it, and a desperate Stan knocks her out with sleeping gas from a greeting card. He takes her to the CIA lab to erase the last 20 hours of her memory. The technician accidentally erases the last 20 years of her memory instead, making her think it is now 1985.

Taking the advice from "forgettable" actor Bill Pullman, Stan treats Francine as though she is 18 again, moving her to her old apartment and having Hayley as her roommate. Back home, he reminisces about how he and Francine first fell in love: while on a drive, they accidentally hit a raccoon, Stan shot it to put it out of its misery, and Francine was overcome by his compassion in doing so. Stan tries to jog Francine's memory by reenacting the incident, but things do not go as planned: Stan misses the raccoon; Francine will not let him kill it; and when he furiously chases the animal it escapes, leading Francine to view him as psychopathic.

Meanwhile, Hayley's boyfriend Jeff tries to persuade her to go to the Burning Man event, but Hayley refuses. Undaunted, Jeff goes with Francine instead. When Stan and Hayley learn where the two have gone, they follow them to Burning Man, where Hayley learns that Jeff only went with Francine to get Hayley to come. She makes up with Jeff, but Stan is still unable to restore Francine's memory, even when he saves her from a fiery death when a smoking paraglider ignites the wooden Burning Man statue. When Stan tells an unconscious Francine that he loves her and kisses her, resigned to the fact that she may never remember him, her memory finally returns and she wakes up.

Meanwhile, Steve asks out an attractive girl from school, Lindsay Coolidge, and is surprised when she accepts, but only if he can get a date for her friend, Jewel who is morbidly obese. Steve sets Jewel up with Roger, but when they get back to Steve's house, Jewel learns that Roger is an alien, tells Lindsay, and Roger knocks them both unconscious with a frying pan, and tries to pin it on black guys. When the others come home, they decide to take Lindsay and Jewel to the CIA lab and have the last 24 hours of their memories erased.


The episode was watched by a total of 7.84 million people, this made it the third most watched show on Animation Domination that night, beating King of the Hill but losing to Family Guy and The Simpsons with 8.17 million.[2]


  1. ^ "American Dad! Episode Guide 2005 Season 1 - Francine's Flashback, Episode 4". Retrieved 2014-07-04. 
  2. ^ "Weekly Program Rankings". ABC. May 17, 2005. Retrieved March 24, 2011.