Seth MacFarlane Seth MacFarlane

Seth MacFarlane’s beef with Fox is once again spilling over onto Twitter. The creator of Family Guy, which airs on Fox, has condemned comments by Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson.

MacFarlane’s tweet reads: “Tucker Carlson’s latest opinion piece once again makes me wish Family Guy was on any other network. Look, Fox, we both know this marriage isn’t working anymore. The sex is only once a year, I don’t get along with your mother, and well … I’ve been having an affair with NBC.”

It isn’t clear which of Carlson’s pieces MacFarlane is referring to. The commentator has expressed anti-vaccine sentiments and conspiracy theories about the origins of the pandemic, among other false and controversial statements.

This isn’t the first time MacFarlane has voiced anger with Carlson and Fox. In 2018, he tweeted that he was “embarrassed to work for this company” after Carlson told the channel’s viewers to believe the opposite of everything they hear on other major news networks. He later donated $2.5 million to public radio (and deleted the tweet).

MacFarlane’s relationship with Fox has undergone a few changes since then. In 2019, Disney acquired most of 21st Century Fox, and as such it now produces Family Guy through its 20th Television Animation unit. But the show airs on the Fox network, which is still a part of Fox Corporation, the Murdoch-controlled company that owns Fox News.

Meanwhile, MacFarlane personally broke with Fox by signing a nine-figure overall deal with Comcast’s NBCUniversal last year — hence the reference to NBC in his tweet. His contract with Fox had expired in June 2019.

Fox has renewed Family Guy through season 21. MacFarlane is also the creator of American Dad, which was broadcast by Fox for 11 seasons before moving to TBS, and the live-action The Orville, which spent two seasons on the network then went to Hulu.

MacFarlane’s tweet is significant because few animation creators go about publicly criticizing their broadcaster. That he feels able to do so, without fear of repercussions, speaks of his clout in the industry.

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