Tonight American Dad (Fox, Sundays, 9:30/8:30C) hits a real milestone – its 150th episode. In true American Dad style, most of the cast of characters don’t even appear, as Lost in Space takes us to Roger’s homeworld – where the abducted Jeff must prove his love for Hayley is real or lose some very vital body parts.
When American Dad premiered it was almost a clone of Family Guy – only with the Peter Griffin figure being CIA Agent Stan Smith. As the series has gone on, however, it evolved into its own unique, transcendentally weird thing – and nowhere is that more apparent than its 150th episode.
The episode features Jeff (Jeff Fischer) whom Roger (Seth MacFarlane) had tricked into being transported into a spacecraft from his homeworld. Roger and Hayley (Rachel MacFarlane) are the only other regulars to appear – and then, only in cameos. It’s about time Jeff got his own ep!
On Roger’s homeworld, Roger has to prove to Emperor Zing (Michael McKean) that his love for Hayley is real by having his memories projected before the emperor and a crowd of aliens – by a many tentacled creature called The Majestic.
Lost in Space is a virtual Who’s Who/What’s What of sci-fi –the slaves on the emperor’s gigantic spacecraft include a Predator and an Andorian (just to give a couple of examples). The ship itself is a gigantic intergalactic mall – and you won’t belief what the emperor considers Earth’s greatest achievement.
The ep also guest stars Sinbad, as himself, and Sean Hayes as not-himself. Both are off the wall hilarious and simultaneously sympathetic.
As with most eps of a MacFarlane show, Lost in Space is a tasty balance of obvious, crude and subtle. Writer Mike Barker and director Chris Bennett have put together a moderately fast-paced episode that is deliberate enough to give the discerning American Dad fan time to take in many of the visual gags – but never quite slow enough to get them all. And the episode is a riot of color.
The verbal gags are mostly on target, but the moments of emotional truth never get lost in the mix.
Overall, Lost in Space is one of the best episodes of American Dad – and light-years beyond what the show’s early episodes could have even hinted at.
Final Grade: A-
Still courtesy of Fox