Stan's Food Restaurant
|"Stan’s Food Restaurant"|
|American Dad! episode|
|Episode no.||Season 7
|Directed by||Josue Cervantes|
|Written by||Brian Boyle|
|Original air date||November 14, 2010|
"Stan's Food Restaurant" is the fourth episode of the seventh season of American Dad!. It aired on Fox on November 14, 2010. This episode — which focused on Stan's dream of opening his own restaurant — is the 100th broadcast episode of American Dad!, an accolade currently bestowed on 100 A.D. for production order. It was written by Brian Boyle and directed by Josue Cervantes.
This episode was met with generally positive reviews from television critics, with much of the praise stemming from the humor of the episode. It was viewed by 5.38 million homes during its original airing, and it acquired a 2.6 rating from the 18-49 demographic, according to the Nielson ratings. It features the guest performances of Curtis Armstrong, Alex Cuthbertson, Roberto Perlas Gomez, Swoosie Kurtz, Hayden Panettiere, and Don Tai Theerathada.
After another disastrous trip to a restaurant, Stan finally reveals to Francine why they can never find a restaurant that suits him: After his father left, Stan's mother took him to Johnson's Parlor in Philadelphia, where they had everything from chocolate covered hot dogs to cherry pie pizza. After they left, Johnson's exploded and Stan could never again relive the joy he had at the restaurant. Francine suggests that Stan open his own restaurant, and so Stan turns to Roger for help. As construction progress, Roger makes heavy changes to the layout, eventually kicking Stan out of the project. Stan takes control and opens his own restaurant right next door, which is a huge success. Unable to admit defeat, Roger blows up Stan's restaurant which ends up burning his own in the process. Roger explains it as a way to cover up the arson, by having Stan's place as the source of the fire. Stan threatens to kill him but backs down when Roger points a gun at him and tells him to relax.
Meanwhile, Steve meets new girl Ashley, who was kicked out of her last school for having too much sex. She invites Steve over while her parents are out of town, asking him to bring a friend for her friend Julia. When he comes over with Snot, they find that Julia is actually a doll. Snot's frustrations eventually culminate to Ashley assuming that Snot "raped" Julia. After an unpleasant experience while Julia "gets an abortion", Steve and Snot attempt to make it seem as though Julia killed herself. But when Ashley realizes she was "murdered", Steve gives up, leaves in frustration, and calls Ashley a weirdo.
"Stan's Food Restaurant" was directed by Josue Cervantes and written by Brian Boyle. This would be the first episode of the seventh season that would be written by Boyle. As of this episode, each of Seth MacFarlane's main characters have owned a restaurant of some sort. Peter Griffin owned Big Pete's House of Munch, Cleveland Brown owned a deli while still living in Quahog, and Stan Smith owned Stan's Food Restaurant.
In addition to the regular cast, actress Hayden Panettiere, actress Swoosie Kurtz, actor Roberto Perlas Gomez, and actor Don Tai Theerathada guest starred in this episode. Recurring voice actor Curtis Armstrong reprises his role as Steve's friend, Snot, having last done so in "Best Little Horror House in Langley Falls". Writer Alex Cuthbertson also made a minor appearance as well.
"Stan's Food Restaurant" was broadcast on November 14, 2010 as part of the animated television block on Fox. It was preceded by The Simpsons, and its sister shows The Cleveland Show and Family Guy. This episode was viewed by 5.38 million homes during its initial airing, despite airing simultaneously with Desperate Housewives on ABC, Undercover Boss on CBS, and Sunday Night Football on NBC. It garnered a 2.6 rating from the 18-49 demographic, the lowest rating out of its timeslot. This episode's total viewership and ratings were significantly down from the previous episode, "Best Little Horror House in Langley Falls", which was viewed by 6.3 million viewers during its initial airing, and received a 3.8 rating in the 18-49 demographic.
"Stan's Food Restaurant" was met with generally positive reception from television critics and fans alike. It currently holds an average score of 6.9/10 by users of the Internet Movie Database, based on 38 votes. On TV.com, it currently retains an average score of 8.1 out of 10 by the users, based on 57 votes. Todd VanDerWerff of The A.V. Club wrote a review with mixed reactions. He wrote, "I don't have a lot to say about tonight's American Dad, which had a lot of my favorite elements of the show, from Stan and Roger working together to Stan trying to realize some long lost childhood dream to Steve putting up with someone who's bonkers just to get laid, but never gelled as much as I wanted it too." However, he went on to praise the humor of the episode, writing, "There were plenty of laughs, like Stan and Roger putting their argument on hold to go witness the birth of a baby calf or the increasingly insane list of things on Stan's restaurant." Concluding the review for the episode, he wrote, "I think where the episode ultimately didn't work as well for me was when the dueling restaurants plotline came along, simply because that split up Roger and Stan into two separate stories in an episode that didn't have room for that sort of thing. I get why it happened, and I liked Stan realizing his dream [...], but it felt like there was more to mine here than actually got mined, and that made the episode a funny one that didn't quite have a strong story to hold it together. He went on to give the episode a B-, the third highest grade of the night, beating out The Cleveland Show episode "Little Man on Campus", but scoring lower than The Simpsons episode "Lisa Simpson, This Isn't Your Life" and Family Guy episode "Baby, You Knock Me Out". Jason Hughes of TV Squad gave a positive review for the episode, writing, "It was fun seeing Stan's restaurant actually succeed, once he got out from under the yoke of Roger taking over the first dream. Maybe pancake plates and chocolate chip meatballs are things MacFarlane has actually considered. I think the MacFarlane universe is big enough now to support a restaurant chain. Maybe he could partner with a theme park on rides."
- Robert Seidman. "TV Ratings Sunday: NBC Wins with Football; Football Fuels Fox; 'Desperate Housewives' Drops". TV by the Numbers.
- Bill Gorman. "Sunday Finals: ‘Desperate Housewives’ Adjusted Up; ‘Brothers & Sisters,’ ‘Cleveland Show’ Down, Plus Final CBS, NBC Numbers". TV by the Numbers.
- Stan's Food Restaurant at the Internet Movie Database
- "Stan's Food Restaurant" at TV.com
- Todd VanDerWerff. ""Lisa Simpson, This Isn't Your Life"/"Little Man On Campus"/"Baby, You Knock Me Out"/"Stan's Food Restaurant"". AV Club.
- Jason Hughes. "Sundays With Seth: 'Cleveland Show,' 'Family Guy' and 'American Dad' Recaps (VIDEO)". TV Squad.