|American Dad! episode|
|Episode no.||Season 4
|Directed by||Bob Bowen|
|Written by||Dan Vebber|
|Original air date||October 7, 2007|
|American Dad! (season 4)
List of American Dad! episodes
"Meter Made" is the second episode of the fourth season and the forty fourth overall episode of the animated comedy series American Dad!. It aired on Fox in the United States on October 7, 2007, and is written by Dan Vebber and directed by Bob Bowen.
In the episode, after Stan punches a male meter maid during a disagreement over a parking ticket, a judge sentences him to two weeks of community service as a meter maid. He finds it empowering. Meanwhile, Hayley poses in the nude for an art class, where one of the artists turns out to be Roger.
The episode opens with a depressed Stan narrating while driving on a road in an unknown forest in Latin America, as he recounts the time that he was once a "somebody." As the Langley Falls "Parade of Homes" gets underway, Francine becomes depressed that the Smith home is not only not included but is rather designated "Dogs Poop Here." At the same time, Stan becomes depressed that even though he works for the CIA, he is still a nobody to the public. Things come to a head when Stan attacks a haughty meter maid who had just ticketed him. Forced to make amends by becoming a meter maid himself for two weeks, Stan learns that he can use the threat of parking violations to extort favors from others from a fellow meter maid (Mike Rowe). After learning this, he is able to get the house into the Parade of Homes. However, Stan tries this tactic on a famous Jamaican artist in an effort to get him to paint the Smith home so that it would be more presentable, but he fails because the artist is also a diplomat, and thus has diplomatic immunity.
However, Stan decides that he can afford to pay the artist nonetheless, and gain even more power, by embezzling the coins that he is supposed to collect from parking meters. Stan and Francine are showing off their redecorated home, now included in the Parade, to the neighbors just as Turlington (Forest Whitaker) from Parking Internal Affairs ominously arrives. In a panic, Stan and Francine try to throw away or destroy everything they bought with the ill-gotten money (to the shock of their guests) but it turns out that Turlington only wanted to give Stan his certificate of completion of his two week service obligation. Additionally, Turlington did suspect Stan was involved, but let his suspicions go after learning he is in the CIA and thus could be trusted (and tells Stan that no matter what they discover later, he would never hear from Internal Affairs again). They are both relieved, though the guests are still dumbfounded by what had just occurred. The episode ends as it returns to the depressed Stan executing a regime change and finding a parking ticket on his car. Ironically, as he narrates how his life is depressing and dull now that he is a "nobody" again (being a CIA agent), Marxist Revolutionaries wage a violent battle nearby as a direct result of his assignment.
In a subplot, Hayley becomes a nude model for a local art class, proclaiming to be completely at ease with her body. However, she is mortified when she sees a disguised Roger at the back of the class. Roger has painted Hayley's body nude, but has not painted her face (at least not from her nose up). She attempts to get Roger to give her his painting, only to find out that Roger had loaned it to an unknowing Steve. In the meantime, Steve has masturbated to the painting. Roger plays Hayley, Klaus (who claims to be proxy bidding for an anonymous collecter in Zürich) and Steve against each other at an auction for the painting, only to be outbid by Francine, using the stolen parking meter money. Just as the truth of the painting is finally revealed to Steve (but not Francine), Francine rips it up as part of her evidence-destroying efforts. As punishment for violating her privacy, Hayley punches Roger.
Genevieve Koski of The A.V. Club gave the episode a B+, saying "Stan's obligatory stint as a meter maid seemed a lot more successful than Homer's random decision to start driving a tow truck, and it tapped in to some of the other tensions in the Smith household--oh the shame of being a lowly CIA agent! It may not have been a terribly original or heartwarming tale--though judging by the Smiths bonding over accidental cannibalism in last week's episode, heartwarming doesn't really seem to be a concern here--but it was fleshed out and a nice vehicle for some great gags, some of which reminded me of Family Guy's better moments."
The episode was watched by a total of 6.29 million people, this made it the third most watched show on Animation Domination that night, beating King of the Hill but losing to The Simpsons and Family Guy with 8.30 million.
- "American Dad! Episode Guide 2007 Season 4 - Meter Made, Episode 2". TVGuide.com. Retrieved 2014-07-13.
- Koski, Genevieve (2007-10-07). "Midnight Towboy / The Powderpuff Boys / Believe It Or Not, Joe's Walking On Air / Meter Made". Avclub.com. Retrieved 2014-07-13.
- "Weekly Program Ratings". ABC. October 9, 2007. Archived from the original on 1 May 2011. Retrieved March 24, 2011.