Recap / Family Guy S 9 E 6 Brian Writes A Bestseller

Airdate: November 21, 2010

Receiving hundreds of packages in the mail containing unsold copies of his failed novel Faster Than the Speed of Love, Brian is convinced that he is not meant to be a writer and gives up. While reading The New York Times, Brian discovers that a self-help book is the highest-selling book on its bestseller list, and after some persuasion by Stewie, decides to write his own in order to prove that any idiot can write a self-help book. Finishing it in three hours and titling it Wish It, Want It, Do It, Brian publishes the book, and it immediately becomes a commercial success. Brian decides to hire Stewie as his publicist when the book becomes popular. Going to dinner later that night with Stewie, Brian reflects on his newfound fame and becomes angered when Stewie botches his dinner reservations. Seeking to reconcile his relationship with Brian, he books him an appearance on the talk show Real Time with Bill Maher.

During the program, Stewie and Brian are informed that the show's topic and its guests have been changed two hours before the show begins. Becoming angered at Stewie once again, Brian fires him and continues on to the show's panel. While on the show, Bill Maher, along with other panelists Arianna Huffington and Dana Gould, begin to criticize Brian's book, stating that it does not meet the expectations of the public and is shallow, repetitive, and banal. Brian attempts to defend it, but ultimately confesses that he wrote the book in a day, believing that it would sell because it is "crap". By that point Maher loses all respect for Brian, stating that a real writer would stand by their work despite what others think. Brian urinates himself on the set, prompting Maher to chase him off the program with a newspaper. Humiliated, Brian attempts to apologize to Stewie, but ends up blaming Stewie for everything and himself for expecting too much of him. Realizing that this is going to be as good an "apology" as it would get, Stewie bluntly tells him that he can't write.

"Brian Writes A Bestseller" contains examples of (YMMV goes here):

  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: Taken to the highest degree. Following the success of his novel, Brian goes from an already pretentious hack to a delusional, pompous, entitled bully.
  • Backhanded Apology: Brian gives one to Stewie at the end. His apology isn't "I'm sorry for being such an irrational dick" so much as "I'm sorry I wasn't more patient with your incompetence".
    Stewie: This is as far as we're going to get, isn't it?
    Brian: Pretty much.
  • Bait-and-Switch: When Brian leaves Stewie alone without a ride home, he says that at least it's not raining. He gets stabbed instead.
  • Bigger Than Jesus
    Brian: I used to think that John Lennon was kind of a jerk for saying The Beatles were bigger than Jesus, but now, I mean, I'm not saying that I am, but I get it.
  • Break the Haughty: It only takes a few minutes for Bill Maher to change Brian from a pompous dick to bashing his own book to save face and wetting himself in a panic.
  • Color Blind Confusion: Brian complains during a particularly prima-donna moment that all the M&Ms brought to him are gray when he specifically said to remove them, the joke being that, as a dog, they're all going to look that way to him.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Stewie, though Brian quickly puts him in his place.
    Stewie: Oh. "Good job Stewie". So you know those words.
    Brian: *angry* What words do I know?
    Stewie: *meek* Nothing.
  • Furry Reminder
    Brian: I said no gray M&Ms. These are all gray!
    • For those who don't get it, dogs are colorblind, meaning that no matter what color M&Ms the production assistant gets for Brian, they're going to be gray,
  • Jerkass Ball/Took a Level in Jerkass: Brian. Even by the standards of his post-cancellation self, he's a pretty big dick in this episode, but he doesn't get away with his behavior, so it's all good.
  • Money, Dear Boy: In-Universe, Brian's real motivation for writing Wish It, Want It, Do It.
  • Never My Fault: Brian blames Stewie for everything that goes wrong. Stewie eventually gives up at the end when it becomes clear that he's never gonna stop.
  • Opinion Flipflop: Brian's hypocritical tendencies are lampshaded in excess this episode. Brian initially writes "Wish It, Want It, Do It" to prove that any idiot can write a self-help book. After it becomes a hit, he parades it to egomaniacal lengths until Bill Maher criticizes it for being the kind of self-destructive crap that morons buy, at which point a desperate Brian slams it as well, to the point he's pretty much begging Maher to give him an opinion to convert to so as to gain his approval.
    Brian: *exasperated* Just tell me what you want me to do!!!
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Bill Maher tells Brian that he is a weak writer who doesn't even try to defend it.
    • Dana Gould and Arianna Huffington give liberal doses of this trope in their criticism of Brian's book, which Brian does not handle well at all and acts as a giant dick towards them for making such suggestions.
  • Roger Rabbit Effect: Brian appears on the real live-action set of Real Time with Bill Maher.
  • Take That! and ReCut: On the TV version, the show once again makes fun of Renee Zellweger by making her look like an ant-eater. On the DVD, Renee Zellweger looks normal and instead, the target is on how mediocre Bradley Cooper (the same guy from Wedding Crashers, He's Just Not That Into You, all three Hangover movies, Silver Linings Playbook, and American Hustle) — who was dating Zellweger at the time — is.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Brian.