If I'm Dyin', I'm Lyin'
|"If I'm Dyin', I'm Lyin'"|
|Family Guy episode|
|Episode no.||Season 2|
|Directed by||Swinton O. Scott III|
|Written by||Chris Sheridan|
|Original air date||April 4, 2000|
"If I'm Dyin', I'm Lyin'" is the ninth episode of the second season of the FOX animated series Family Guy. It was the 16th episode of Family Guy to be aired. It was produced for season one but aired in season two. It guest-starred Martin Mull as Mr. Harris, and Fred Tatasciore as Chevy Chase.
Chris has been failing school recently, and Lois forbids him from watching television until his grades improve. Lois suggests to Peter that he help Chris with his study skills. This prompts Peter to lie to her about studying so that he and Chris can watch their favorite television show, Gumbel 2 Gumbel: Beach Justice, a crime drama starring brothers Bryant and Greg Gumbel. However, he is disappointed to discover that the show has been canceled. To get it back on the air, Peter decides to tell the Grant-a-Dream Foundation that Chris is suffering from a made-up terminal illness called "tumorsyphilisitisosis", the symptoms of which include growing extra nipples (actually pepperoni slices) across one's torso, and that being able to watch the show is his dying wish.
Because of this (and because everyone thinks the name of the disease is sexy) an agreement is brokered between Grant-a-Dream and NBC in which Gumbel 2 Gumbel will be put back on the air if NBC can get the film rights to Chris's death. Peter is overjoyed with Gumbel 2 Gumbel back on the air, and Chris uses his "illness" to his advantage in school. However, Peter panics upon learning that mourners are holding a candlelit vigil on their front lawn. When the network comes to claim their part of the deal, Lois finds out about the scam and tells Peter to tell the truth. However, he finds out that he would face jail time for defrauding a charitable organization if he does. Acting out of desperation, he casually claims to have cured him with newfound healing powers and gets off the hook.
Peter gets a reputation for being a healer, and people start worshiping him as a god, which he himself begins to believe; they even go as far as dressing like him and building a giant golden idol of him. Lois and Brian, however, continue to plead with Peter to admit he is not a god, lest he wants divine wrath bestowed upon him by a real God. It is not long before God himself sends six plagues upon his house. First a blackout occurs in the Griffin house. Brian then gets covered with fleas. Chris comes down the stairs with pimples all over his face, and while Meg was giving Stewie a bath, the bathtub water turned to blood (much to Stewie's delight). Peter believes that there is a logical explanation for everything until frogs start flying out of his shirt, upon which he finally decides to tell the truth. Peter tries to admit he is not God, but ends up beating around the bush. Chris is crushed by the golden idol during the final plague (death of the firstborn son). Peter, realising that his son is dying for real, tearfully tries to comfort Chris in his seemingly final moments, and then genuinely apologises to the real God for his blasphemy, and begs for forgiveness. God, who knows by now that Peter really gets the point, finally ends the plagues and spares Chris' life.
In June 2002, Igor Smykov sued the Russian television channel REN TV on claims that Family Guy, along with The Simpsons, were "morally degenerate and promoted drugs, violence, and homosexuality." As evidence, "If I'm Dyin', I'm Lyin'" was shown to the judge to prove that Family Guy showed a dysfunctional family, and thus should not be aired again on the channel. The case was thrown out after one day.
In his 2008 review, Ahsan Haque of IGN, rating the episode a 7.9/10, said that while "If I'm Dyin', I'm Lyin" is "worth watching" it "isn't as entertaining" as most episodes in season 2. He called the Gumbel 2 Gumbel sequence the highlight of the episode. Show creator Seth MacFarlane called it one of the least funny episodes of Family Guy, after "Fore Father."
- S. Callaghan, “If I’m Dyin’, I’m Lyin’.” Family Guy: The Official Episode Guide Seasons 1–3. New York: HarperCollins, 2005. 74–77.
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