The Griffin Family (Peter Griffin | Stewie Griffin | Brian Griffin) | The Neighbors (Glenn Quagmire) | Recurring Characters (Quahog 5 News) | Antagonists
A caving guy that talks slow due to a head trauma. Is now divorced from his wife for being too nice, and, for a while, moved to his hometown of Stoolbend, Virginia after marrying his high school crush.
See Also: The Cleveland Show
- Abandoned Catchphrase: "14. You're 14 years old." and "No! No, X!", among other catchphrases that originated from The Cleveland Show, are never used once he returns to Family Guy.
- Abusive Parent: In "Saturated Fat Guy", he said that two of his kids have to sleep in the car.
- Adaptational Jerkass: Downplayed as while he hasn't become quite as callous as Seth's other father protagonists, he is noticeably more abrasive and self-serving in The Cleveland Show.
- Big Fun: He's a barrel-belly full of laughs.
- Black Dude Dies First: First main character to be killed off in the "Stewie Kills Lois/Lois Kills Stewie" special, not counting Lois' death fake out, that happened in part one.
- The Bore: Cleveland occasionally drones on and on, about pointless nonsense, boring his friends to death. In "Peter's Def Jam", Cleveland wasted the entire first episode of their podcast, yapping about getting gum stuck to his shoe.
- Brutal Honesty: Cleveland is usually the one to bluntly deliver news, that nobody wants to hear.
- The Bus Came Back: Came back in Season 12 now that his show has been cancelled.
- Butt-Monkey: His house is often destroyed by Peter's shenanigans.
- Catchphrase: Has quite a handful: "Party over here!", "Oh, that's nasty.", "No, no, no, no, no, NO!!!", "And Boom Goes the Dynamite", and "Mmmm, my word", just to name a few.
- Character Development: Zig-zagged. When he got his own show, he grew immensely as a character, as he was given more screen time to shine and we learned a lot about his backstory. When he came back to Family Guy, not only was he sidelined, but he was pretty much entirely devoid of character, and reduced to a one-dimensional stereotype.
- Commuting on a Bus: Before his official return in Season 13, he makes guest appearances and cameos in some episodes whilst starring in his own show.
- Disney Death: In the Season 6 finale, "Lois Kills Stewie", He was shot dead by Stewie Griffin, and went to Heaven. However, the end of the episode revealed the whole special was just a computer simulation, meaning his death never actually happened.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Had a background cameo in the courtroom scene of the unaired pilot episode.
- Easily Forgiven: When Loretta cheated on him with his own best friend and dumped him, he didn't even raise an eyebrow at Quagmire or Loretta.
- Extreme Doormat: Cleveland's extreme doormat personality became a plot point in one episode, where it caused his wife, Loretta, to cheat on him with Quagmire because Cleveland wasn't passionate at all. Peter tries to teach Cleveland to get angry and it worked so well that Cleveland wanted to murder Quagmire. Cleveland manages to regain control of himself and, while he is still the doormat in his own show, he isn't as bad as he used to be.
- Flanderization: Since the uncancellation, he started to change into an ethnical narcissist, and after he got his own show, he would only be used as an excuse to make jokes at the expense of his ethnicity as episodes passed.
- Fourth-Wall Observer: Makes a handful of meta-jokes about his show being cancelled.
- The Generic Guy: Cleveland doesn't have much of a personality to begin with, but this is more prominent when we compare him to the Psychopathic Manchild Peter, the Lovable Sex Maniac Quagmire or the Handicapped Badass with Large Ham tendencies Joe. Since becoming a lead character, he has gained brasher wackier tendencies but still seems toned down in comparison.
- Grew a Spine: After Loretta cheats on him with Quagmire and kicks him out of the house, the Griffins invite him to live in theirs and teach him how to be more assertive of himself. Since then, he's a lot less introverted and meek. Grows even more a spine in his own show and upon returning to Family Guy, he's much more emotive than before he had his own show.
- Meaningful Name: His name is a reference to the professional football team, The Cleveland Browns.
- Motor Mouth: In one cutaway gag, Cleveland used to work as an auctioneer (who have to be motor mouths as per their job description) until he got hit in the head and now speaks slowly as a result.
- Nice Guy: In the seasons that preceded his own show, Cleveland was notoriously one of the kindest and most down-to-earth characters in Family Guy, not holding grudges against those who hurt him and only raising his voice if the situation called for it.
- Once Done, Never Forgotten: His friends make fun of him that his own show got cancelled and he had to move back.
- Only Sane Man: Cleveland is one of the saner characters in the show, which stands out considering his closest friends are a moronic Jerkass (Peter), a sexual predator (Quagmire) and a man with severe anger issues (Joe).
- Punny Name: Named after a professional U.S. Football team, the Cleveland Browns. His middle name, Orenthal, is also a nod to former football star and convicted felon O.J. Simpson.
- Put on a Bus: He leaves the cast of Family Guy in season 8 due to getting his own spin-off, only returning to the show after the latter has been cancelled.
- Rapid-Fire "No!": Tends to do this whenever he falls out of his bathtub whenever his house is destroyed. He once did it when he dropped an Oreo cookie into Loretta's grave.
- Running Gag: Since season 5, a recurring joke involves Cleveland falling from his house's second floor while he is taking a bath, which happens everytime someone, usually Peter, destroys the front of his house. The joke even continues while he's written out for his own shown, playing out like normal, sans him, causing Peter to remark "Oh yeah, Cleveland moved"
- Token Minority: Until Jerome came along to replace him in season 8, Cleveland was the most prominent African American character in the main cast.
- Took a Level in Badass: He used to be a Extreme Doormat but after he found out Loretta had slept with Quagmire and Peter taught him anger, he has become very confident and unafraid to stand up for himself.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Downplayed. He was one of the nicer characters but after getting his own show, he's become more of a jerk. That said, he's far less abrasive in comparison to his friends.
- Vocal Evolution: His voice gets higher and less deadpan after the uncancellation.
Cleveland's ex-wife whom he left after he discovered she had an affair with Quagmire. Voiced by Alex Borstein.
- Fat Bitch: Is a complete bitch to Cleveland and even cheated on him.
- Flat Character: She seemed to exist only for the sake of being Cleveland's wife, and even the writers themselves admitted that she wasn't very interesting. This (along with Alex Borstein being tired of voicing her) lead to her being removed from the series.
- Intolerable Tolerance: When Cleveland calls her out on cheating, she scolds him that he has been neglecting her. He apologizes for that, she scolds him again for being such a doormat, and dumps him.
- Jerkass: She gets everything in the divorce, leaves Cleveland completely out of her will (even though she was the one who cheated on him) and was generally rude and callous. It makes it a lot less tragic when she gets killed.
- She even continues beyond the grave. After leaving everything to Cleveland Jr., she made sure he wasn't allowed to give even a penny to his father.
- Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: In "Love, Blactually", she tries to reconcile with Cleveland after regretting her infidelity. When Cleveland rejects her, it seems that she's taken it well but it's later revealed that she left all of her will to Cleveland Jr. and leaves nothing to Cleveland, completely showing how much of an ass she truly is.
- Killed Off for Real: Accidentally by Peter in The Cleveland Show.
- Sassy Black Woman: Complete with plenty of head-bobbing and "mmm-hmm!s"
Cleveland Brown, Jr.
Cleveland's hyperactive son, that is, until his appearance and personality was completely overhauled for The Cleveland Show, turning him into a fat, wimpy nerd.
See Also: The Cleveland Show
- Ambiguous Disorder: His earlier self appeared to have A.D.H.D., given his hyperactivity and inability to stay focused on anything.
- Beware the Nice Ones: When Peter shot in him "A Shot in the Dark", Junior made a horrifying threat to Peter, that he'd be "coming for his ass". Whether or not he was joking is still unclear.Junior: Mr. Griffin?Peter: Yeah?Junior: Just so you know, [suddenly dark] I'm gunna be coming for your ass.Peter: [scared] Wh-what's that, now?Junior: I'm saying, it's on. You ever feel the cool steel of a switchblade, pressed against your temple?[beat, lingering on Peter's fear]Junior: [chuckles] Hey, Mr. Griffin, I'm just kidding. [suddenly dark] Or am I? You're gunna wonder about that, you fat bitch. [delightful] See you later!
- The Bus Came Back: After a long absence in Family Guy, Cleveland Junior finally returned as a major character, when The Cleveland Show started.
- His older self said "I'm (famous person)!" a lot, as he was a fan of playing pretend, like he was a famous or historical person such as Tiger Woods, Abraham Lincoln, or Daniel Boone.
- In "The Cleveland Show", the phrase "I'm Tiger Woods" was quoted, whenever there was a callback to his old self, making this the standard version of the varying catchphrase.
- Characterization Marches On: In earlier seasons, Junior is portrayed as a young, skinny little boy, with a much higher pitched voice. He is characterized by his jumping around and hyperactivity.
- Fat Comic Relief: Like in The Cleveland Show, most of the jokes surrounding Cleveland Junior are about his weight.Cleveland: We gotta special order Cleveland Junior's pants from a company that manufactures grill covers.
- Forgettable Character: In "Nanny Goats", Natalie steals Cleveland's car and drives off with it. Cleveland is relieved to know that he made it out, safe and sound, before remembering his son was in the back seat.Junior: Daddy?
- Formerly Fit: Had an average build until The Cleveland Show.
- Frame-Up: When testifying before court, after Peter shot him, Junior was painted as a criminal, with very faulty evidence to back up the statement. Yet, people believed him and he got sent to jail.
- Genki Girl: Junior was a bit of a "Genki Guy", in the early seasons.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Appeared less and less throughout the first three seasons, before going completely absent for a while. He wasn't even present in "The Cleveland Loretta Quagmire", which involved his own parents getting divorced. When The Cleveland Show happened, Junior had a swinging comeback, and was given tons of personality, purpose, and closure to the story of his parents' divorce. Since the show's cancellation, he's still featured in Family Guy, and even has an episode focusing on him.
Cleveland's second wife, replacing Loretta. She was introduced in The Cleveland Show.
See Also: The Cleveland Show
- Awful Wedded Life: She had problems with Cleveland, much like her friends and their husbands. So, she and the other wives signed them up for a relationship-building vacation, where she complained to Cleveland about how she wishes that he would help her around the house more often.
- Break-Up/Make-Up Scenario: She and Lois got into one of these in "He's Bla-ack!", where Lois got mad at Donna for spanking Chris, when he wasn't her child. Donna thought it was perfectly fine to punish someone else's child, and responded to her complaint with backlash. She and Lois forbade their husbands to hang out too. This went on for a while, until their husbands finally told them "No" and entered a three-legged race together, making Lois and Donna realize, they should stop this silly argument and just become friends again.
- Broken Bird: Throughout the first three seasons of The Cleveland Show, Donna never knew her own mother (Dee Dee Tubbs). It wasn't until "Mama Drama", when she was finally reunited with her, and all was well with the world. However, this didn't last too long, as in the Family Guy episode "Candy Quahog Marshallow!", Cleveland mentioned that her mom killed herself, taking Donna's already rocky and extremely short relationship with her mother, and ending it off with a tragedy.
- Convenient Replacement Character: Eventually came around as a convenient replacement character for Cleveland's ex-wife, Loretta Brown.
- Demoted to Extra: After The Cleveland Show was cancelled, and she moved to Quahog, Donna became nothing more than "Cleveland's wife" and "Lois' Token Black Friend".
- Domestic Abuse: Donna spanked Cleveland on the penis, for hanging out with Peter.
- Feeling Their Age: In "Stewie's First Word", Cleveland was able to deduce that Donna is only 11 months away from menopause.
- Forbidden Friendship: In "He's Bla-ack!", Donna forbade Cleveland to hang out with Peter anymore, because of a fight she got into with Lois.
- Forgettable Character: Peter doesn't bother to remember her name. In "A Shot in the Dark", he mistook her name for "Latisha"
- Greed: In "Family Guy Lite", Donna started by sneaking a few snacks at Lois' book club, and eventually got to the point, where she dumped the entire plate into her purse.
- Housewife: While in The Cleveland Show, she was a workaholic, who balanced her job as a homemaker with her job as the principal's secretary, in Family Guy, she has no job and spends all her time at home.
- Jerkass: Donna prank called Cleveland, and insulted him, during a time, wherein she knew he would be crying on the toilet.
- My Friends... and Zoidberg: Peter doesn't hold Donna in high regard at all.
Lois: [terrified] Oh my God!Peter: [optimistic] Now, don't worry. They could have just shot Donna twice.
- While Peter is good friends with everyone on Spooner Street, its shown that he doesnt really consider Donna a friend and possibly dislikes her. He doesnt bother to remember her name, even once mistaking that her name is Latisha, and when he and his friends were about to be "executed" by terrorists couple-by-couple in "Take My Wife", he immediately hopes that Donna was shot multiple times and not his friends.
Donna: I don't think we've seen you folks snce the wedding. Still waiting on that gift.
- In "Dr. C and the Women", Peter was very blunt about not wanting to talk to Donna, describing a conversation with her as "Yegch!"
- Later on, its implied that she's the only one who dislikes him too. She's the first to accuse him of a hate crime when he shot Cleveland Jr. in "A Shot In The Dark" and immediately considers him a liar when he goes out to check his sperm donor contract in "A House Full of Peters" although she does have a point in this one, as he did lie to visit the hospital.
- The two just don't get along at all. They've been at each other's throats since their first interaction in "The Splendid Source".
- No Respect Guy: Donna joined Lois' story writing club in "Family Guy Lite", but never followed through with writing a story, as instructed. She flatly told Lois this the following week, much to Lois' appall. As such, Lois told Donna that she was not allowed to eat any more of the snacks she prepared. Seconds later, Donna grabbed some cookies and started eating them, right in front of Lois' face. She kept on doing this for a while, before she finally decided to just dump the entire plate of cookies into her purse and take it home with her, all without raising an eyebrow.
- Redeeming Replacement: Donna is agreed on as a far better wife to Cleveland than Loretta was, despite her shortcomings.
- Sarcasm Mode: Even after her migration to Family Guy completely sucked her dry of most of her personality and character identity, Donna's still managed to keep her classic sardonic cynicism.Lois: I don't spank and my children are very well-behaved.Donna: Your baby's on the roof right now.
- Salt and Pepper: Her friendship with Lois.
- Satellite Character: To Cleveland. She and Bonnie both work together as this to Lois.
- The Unfettered: Donna had no problem spanking Chris, 'til his butt got a rash, after he broke her grandmother's vase. Lois scolded her for punishing someone else's child, but Donna stood her ground, saying that it was the right thing to do.
- Verbal Tic: Added "arrhea" (as in "diarrhea") to the end of her words in one episode.Bonnie: Well, that's clearly not true.Donna: Yeah. That boy's got liar-rhea.
- Wet Blanket Wife: In Family Guy, Donna became more of a one-dimensional variant of these, in contrast to Cleveland's antics.Cleveland: Hey, Donna! The tree's just regular! There are no elves in it!Donna: Go to work, Cleveland!
Cleveland's bratty teenage stepdaughter. She was introduced in The Cleveland Show.
See Also: The Cleveland Show
- Absentee Actor: In "The Splendid Source", Roberta was the only member of The Brown-Tubbs Family not to make a full appearance (she is seen from behind), while The Griffins visited them in Stoolbend.
- Accidental Misnaming: An example of how little the ''Family Guy'' writers know or care about The Cleveland Show can be seen in the Family Guy episode, "La Famiglia Guy", where not only Peter but also Cleveland addresses her as "Roberta Brown", completely disregarding the fact that she would (and does) have the last name of the parent on her side of the blended family, Donna Tubbs.Peter: To protect my identity, I'm gunna change my name to "Roberta Brown".Cleveland: Peter, that's my daughter's name!
- Age-Gap Romance: While Cleveland repaired his old home, the Tubbs side of the family needed a place to live. Quagmire volunteered to let Roberta stay at his house. We all know where this is going. Nobody ever stopped Quagmire, and Roberta didn't even flinch, and given her sexual promiscuity on her previous show, it's obvious what they did, during her stay there.
- Demoted to Extra: She used to be a main cast member in The Cleveland Show, but since she moved to Family Guy, she's just been a background character with pretty much no purpose, whatsoever.
- Flat Character: Does nothing at all, now that she's been sidelined.
- Functional Addict: In "Peter's Sister", a one-off gag suggests that Roberta is addicted to painkillers.Peter: Where's you get these?Cleveland: Stepdaughter's purse ... Not my problem.
- Generic Guy: It's even been joked how generic she is on the show.[Cleveland talks to Peter about Donna forcing him to eat healthy]Peter: I always forget. Is Donna the wife or is Roberta the wife?Cleveland: I don't know, man.
- The Voiceless: To date, she hasn't had a single line in Family Guy.
Cleveland's rowdy, street-smart stepson. He was introduced in The Cleveland Show.
See Also: The Cleveland Show
- Big, Stupid Doodoo-Head: In "The Splendid Source", he delivered an insult like this to Peter.Peter: Hey, Cleveland. You should probably keep the markers away from your kids. Somebody colored in your Jesus statue with a bunch of brown.Rallo: Somebody colored in your ass with too much ass, fatass.
- The Cameo: While he was still a character on The Cleveland Show, Rallo appeared in the third Family Guy Star Wars episode, "It's a Trap!" as Nein Numb.
- Demoted to Extra: Ever since the cancellation of The Cleveland Show, he has gone from being the main character, to just another sidelined throwaway guy.
- Expy: Stewie stuck it to him bad, when calling him a "Boondocks ripoff".
- Salt and Pepper: Shortly after moving back to Quahog, Rallo became good friends with Chris.Chris: I just realized something. We're The Rock.Rallo: What do you mean?Chris: You and me. Together, we make one biracial wrestler!
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Rallo had a pet dog named Rock Hudson in The Cleveland Show, but ever since the family moved into Quahog, for Family Guy, Rock Hudson has been nowhere to be found. In fact, in the episode where Cleveland comes back to Quahog, he talks about a telephone cord, saying "That's a pet leash, if the good lord decideth we should have one", implying they don't have a pet.
A paraplegic cop that lost the ability to walk during a failed sting operation. Has a wife, Bonnie, who was pregnant for almost ten years.
- Artistic License Biology:
- His paralysis is often treated as a problem with his legs rather than his spine. One episode had him get back on his feet with a leg transplant, only to re-cripple himself by shooting himself in the back.
- In the Retcon of his origin, he is explicitly shown being shot multiple times in the legs, but not the spine, rendering all the impotence and incontinence jokes nonsensical.
- Artistic License Physics: In the interest of humor, the show sometimes fudges its depiction of how Joe's disability impacts his life. In the title sequence, Joe lifts his legs with his arms in order to perform the kicks along with everyone else. He's been depicted pushing himself down a flight of stairs in his wheelchair. At home, Joe takes out the trash by putting on a special pair of "hand shoes," bearing weight through his arms, and carrying the full trash bag on his bottom.
- Ax-Crazy: Downplayed Trope, but present. In one case, when he couldn't finish a steak, he lost his temper, shot the steak and nearly shot his friends in an Unstoppable Rage.
- Barbie Doll Anatomy: In one episode where Bonnie is changing his diaper, Joe has no visible penis. However, she does mention that she has to put it on.
- The Big Guy: Amongst Peter's circle of friends, Joe's the toughest and most physically capable.
- The Bore: In spite of his Hot-Blooded moments, he has some incredibly dull tendencies, such as a complete inability to make small talk.
- Butt-Monkey: Due to his condition, he tends to get abused far more often than Peter's other friends.
- Characterization Marches On: His Handicapped Badass personality has pretty much been dropped and now he's more or less just used for cripple jokes.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Was able to beat up Peter, Cleveland, and Quagmire at the same time when he wasn't crippled.
- Depending on the Writer:
- Some episodes imply he can get an erection just fine, although others suggests that he can only make love to his wife by wearing a strap-on.
- In some episodes he's "a cop first and a buddy second" and will bust his friends or even family without hesitation. In others he'll look the other way to their various felonies or even join in himself.
- In some episodes, he's a Handicapped Badass while in other episodes, his disability has made him barely able to take care of himself.
- In some episodes, he's depicted as a heroic cop who has the awe of his friends. In other cases, he's depicted as suicidal and as the runt of his friends.
- The nature of his disability is itself variable. He's almost always portrayed as a paraplegic, but a later Retcon of his origin story features him being shot multiple times in the legs, which would certainly be enough to put him in a wheelchair, but wouldn't actually paralyze him from the waist down.
- His social skills vary as well, sometimes he's depicted as sociable and depicted as having a valued opinion. Other times his social skills are poor (either making jokes with the wrong tone of voice or making outdated references) and his friends go as far as to move him to the furthest corner of the room so they don't have to listen to him.
- Dirty Cop:
- Almost always allows his close friends, most frequently Peter and Quagmire, to get away with everything, from abuse to pedophilia and beyond.
- Seems to be aware of the rampant racism on the police force and not be especially bothered by it, even despite having a black man as a close friend.
- Went along with Peter's idea to help Quagmire get his job back - namely, drug the pilots mid-flight so that Quagmire can save the plane when it starts to crash.
- When he, Brian and Peter got annoyed with Quagmire's new pet cat, it was Joe who recommended breaking into Quagmire's house and shaving the cat - Peter accidentally skinned it instead, and Joe let them all get away with it.
- He agrees to the arson of Goldman's Pharmacy to help Mort Goldman collect an insurance settlement.
- He conspired to aid Quagmire in murdering his sister's abusive boyfriend, then covered it up.
- In "Welcome Back, Carter" he encourages Peter to blackmail Carter to give him stuff to ensure Peter does not blab on the affair.
- When he arrests Quagmire for statutory rape with an underage girl, Quagmire shares the photos he took of her to all his friends including Joe, who laughs at them.
- Driven to Suicide: Joe's paraplegia (and the difficulty it causes him and his family) takes a tremendous toll on his emotional state and makes him sporadically suicidal. Several gags (mostly throwaways) play this for laughs as Joe casually attempts to kill himself or brings it up in conversation, and an entire Season-13 episode revolves around Joe deciding to end it for good.Quagmire: [changing Joe's diaper] You make your doo-doos, Joe?Joe: Shut up.Quagmire: You make your doo-doos?Joe: I said shut up!Quagmire: What's that in there? Doo-doos! They're stinky!Joe: [deadpan] Quagmire, how'd you like to help me commit suicide?
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Since the show was uncancelled, he became much easier to piss off. One episode has him threatening his friends with a gun because they teased him for being unable to finish his dinner.
- Handicapped Badass: In "Da Boom" he was partially vaporized leaving him stuck on his driveway unable to move around. A giant mutated rat comes along his response "bring it on!"
- HeelFace Revolving Door: In Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse, sorta. He can be used and bought by Stewie or Brian at anytime, but is a boss in the Handicapped Level, and continues to be with Stewie and Brian upon being defeated.
- Hidden Depths: Several episodes reveal that he takes side jobs such as a magician's assistant, clown, and Uber driver when he's not being a cop.
- Hot-Blooded: He screams almost all his lines everytime he's pissed off.
- Humongous Mecha: Crippletron is essentially a giant robot formed by Joe along with dozens of people in wheelchairs.
- Ink-Suit Actor: He shares an uncanny resemblance with his voice actor (save for the paraplegia): brown hair worn high and tight, Heroic Build and a large, noticeable chin.
- Inspirationally Disadvantaged: In the first three seasons in particular, Joe is shown to be an excellent cop and provider and a person of strong character despite being a paraplegic. Beyond that point, he's whiny and the butt of numerous disability jokes.
- Interservice Rivalry: Being a cop, a few episodes show that he has a disdain towards the Quahog Fire Department and Firefighters in general.
- Jerkass Ball: In "Believe It Or Not, Joe's Walking On Air", he celebrates finally being able to walk by abusing his friends, and leaving Bonnie.
- Lantern Jaw of Justice: He's a cop with a jaw that's huge beyond all biological reason.
- Leader Wannabe: Scenes in "Hot Shots!" and "Shanksgiving" suggest that Joe secretly wishes to be the leader of his friend group.
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: The 9th season premiere is the first time in years we've seen him actually do cop stuff. For the most part it's been dropped in favor of him being the Angry Wheelchair Dude.
- The Power of Love: Subverted in the episode "Foreign Affairs". Bonnie goes to France in order to have an affair, and eventually, Lois tells Joe what's happening. He flies to France to get Bonnie back, and to prove his love for her, he stands up from his wheelchair and walks under his own power. Except it's actually Quagmire duct-taped to his back that's allowing him to walk.
- Rubber Hose Limbs: His legs are occasionally shown to be ridiculously flexible, to the point he can tie them into a knot.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!:
- As an officer of the law, he's initially against Quagmire's plan to kill his sister's abusive boyfriend. But after seeing for himself what a monster the guy is, his immediate response is, "...Let's waste this dick."
- In the Season 10 episode "Thanksgiving", Joe lets a thief go when it turned out the man was homeless and had stolen food in order to feed his family.
- See You in Hell: The Grinch says this, tossing a roller skate at Joe. Joe slips on the roller skate and falls off a roof, becoming paralyzed.
- Semper Fi: Can recite the Rifleman Creed replacing Rifle into Wheelchair while cleaning his WheelchairJoe: THIS IS MY WHEELCHAIR! THERE ARE MANY LIKE IT, BUT THIS ONE IS MINE! WITHOUT ME, MY WHEELCHAIR IS USELESS! WITHOUT MY WHEELCHAIR, I AM USELESS!
- Sixth Ranger: Peter, Cleveland, and Quagmire were already a trio but became a quartet when Joe moved in.
- Stepford Smiler: Joe proposes he and his friends travel to Niagara Falls and starts acting more happily than usual. Turns out it was a façade and he was planning to kill himself by jumping off the cliff all along.
- Suddenly Shouting: Joe is a rare combination of Deadpan Snarker and No Indoor Voice. 90% of the time, he's either shouting at the top of his lungs or speaking with a dull monotone. There's often no in-between with him, and he switches between the two without warning.Joe: [disguised as Lois] You ready to get some new notebooks and protractors and slacks?Chris: I want blue jeans.Joe: YOU'RE GETTING SLACKS!Peter: Okay, well, I guess you can take my license. Of course, it's all the way up here. [holds driver's license above his own head where Joe can't reach]Joe: Peter, knock it off. Give it to me.Peter: Here you go, Officer.Joe: Give me the damn license.Peter: Having some trouble there?Joe: This is in poor taste, Peter. You're starting to piss me off.Peter: All you gotta do is take it.Joe: [gruffly] You're starting to PISS ME OFF! [bludgeons Peter in the gut with his nightstick]
- Testosterone Poisoning: Prone to fits of violence and aggressive shouting.
- Took a Level in Dumbass: He has gotten more and more naive and air headed as the seasons have gone on. For instance, he didn't know that other grown men didn't wear poop sacks despite having not been paralyzed for years and he didn't know where The Muppet Show theme came from.
- Top-Heavy Guy: Which is of course Truth in Television for athletic individuals who are wheelchair-bound.
- Would Hit a Girl: In the episode "Breaking Out Is Hard To Do," Joe punches Lois many times after he catches and arrests her for stealing, explaining that as a policeman he's not allowed to give women special treatment. She's very understanding of the whole situation.
Joe's wife. Was pregnant for almost ten years. Later gave birth in Season 7.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing:
- In one episode, she was gonna leave Joe and have an affair with a Frenchman, because she was "bored of Joe". A handicapped Frenchman at that. Joe convinced her to stay.
- In "Go Stewie Go" she openly admitted to Lois that she had an affair and claimed it was "healthy for a woman to explore her sexuality", so this means she has cheated on Joe at least once before and attempted to do it again in Paris, but was only stopped that time because Joe showed up. However, in the latest episode, "Internal Affairs," Bonnie had been acting distant with Joe, leading him to cheat on her with a younger police officer. Upon finding out, she acted as if it was the worst attack on her and treated it as unforgivable until the end of the episode.
- Joe did call Bonnie out for becoming emotionally distant and bitter and cited the Paris incident as to one of the reasons why he did what he did, and rather than shift blame solely on of them, "Internal Affairs" showed that both of them have been unhappy for a long time and it's just gotten worse.
- Characterization Marches On: Joe and Bonnie were originally madly in love, with Bonnie always thinking about how Joe's rugged enthusiasm and perseverance turned her on. Then as Joe slowly shifted into a mostly one-dimensional cripple joke, Bonnie shifted into a long suffering, unhappy woman due to Joe's inability to walk, with her bitchiness the result of how worn out she was. It's made even worse in "The Most Interesting Man in the World" and "Brian the Closer", which feature scenes which imply that she'd go as far as wanting Joe dead.
- Depending on the Writer: The state of her marriage to Joe tends to vary. In some episodes, she is a loving, devoted wife. In others, she is perfectly willing to cheat on him. In others still, she is shown to actively want Joe dead, doing such things as being a house by a cliff with an angled floor, or even putting ground glass in Joe's food.
- Early Installment Character Design Difference: She had red brown hair in the early seasons.
- Embarrassing First Name: In "The Heartbreak Dog", it's hinted that her legal first name might be Bonald.
- Happily Married: Originally. The two of them rarely had any arguments in the pre-cancellation seasons. In fact, Bonnie would openly gush about how much Joe still turned her on and what she would do to him the next time they were in bed. She never seemed to have any issue with helping Joe with his needs, either.
- Hidden Buxom: Even in the loose dress she usually wears, her breasts are large enough that her cleavage is still visible. When her and the other neighborhood couples go on an island retreat, she dons a sports bra at the beach that reveals she is extremely busty. Lois herself also lampshades her cup size in another episode, accusing Bonnie of "putting out" with her breasts. When she goes out with the girls and prank calls her husband, she wears a dress with a deep v-neck that shows off her ample cleavage as well.
- Hypocrite: In later seasons but there's at least two instances that stand out.
- In And I'm Joyce Kinney, she calls Lois a slut, despite the fact that she's had relations with men other than Joe
- In Internal Affairs, she's upset when Joe has affair, despite her going to Paris in Foreign Affairs to sleep with other men. Actually, in the previous season, she's implied she's had affairs before.
- Ink-Suit Actor: Subtle but some of her appearance calls to mind her voice actress.
- Longest Pregnancy Ever: Finally resolved in Season 7. It's even lampshaded on more than a few occasions. Case in point:Bonnie: I don't want to bring a new baby into the world with [Glenn Quagmire] running around!Peter: Okay, first off, Bonnie, you've been pregnant for, what, six years? Either have the baby or don't!
- Mama Bear: Shown to be one in the Thanksgiving episode; when Joe was trying to escort their son Kevin to jail, she objects to him and orders him to allow Kevin to explain his reason for deserting the military.
- Older Than They Look: Despite her youthful appearance, one episode says she's 46.
- Mum Looks Like a Sister: Doesn't look much older than her now-adult son Kevin.
- Resentful Guardian: In later seasons, Bonnie started to hate looking after her husband. Often wishing for his death and wanting to murder him herself at one point.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Bonnie used to be a kind housewife who took loving care of her family. In season 12, her personality did a 180 and she started being portrayed as a bitter, apathetic woman who resents her husband to the point of wishing him dead.
Joe and Bonnie Swanson's son, who was thought to have died in Iraq before the Thanksgiving special proves he has survived.
- Bungled Suicide: A running gag is that Kevin repeatedly tries to kill himself after his return but is easily thwarted each time.
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Kevin appeared in the first 3 seasons, then just disappeared for years, though he had a few non speaking cameos. Years after his last speaking role, Peter questioned about his disappearance out of curiosity. Joe explained Kevin died as a soldier in Iraq with hardly any emotion.
- Disney Death: Season 10 reveals he had actually faked his own death and abandoned his squad during the Iraq War.
- Flat Character: The reason why he was ultimately killed off is because he had no personality to speak of and thus the writers had no idea how to utilize him. However, he was brought back in season 10, when he became a moody, suicidal young man due to the things he witnessed during the Iraq War.
- Love Interest: He and Meg have dated briefly; although every time they get time together, something usually happens to interrupt them.
- Screw This, I'm Out of Here!: Since he could no longer tolerate the bloodshed of the Iraq war, he decided to leave the military. Though his father initially decides to arrest him, he realizes that though his actions were technically illegal he had understandable reasons to do so and lets him go.
- Self-Harm: Peter says he once saw Kevin "masturbating with a knife", implying that, much like Meg, he has a habit of cutting himself.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Kevin displays suicidal tendencies after his return, with many scenes implying that he is suffering from PTSD after being forced to commit several atrocities during the war.
- Strong Family Resemblance: On both sides. He has his father's facial features and hair color and his mother's head shape.
Joe and Bonnie's baby daughter, who has the voice of Patrick Stewart in her head.
- Action Girl: Kicked the crap out of Stewie for trying to steal her doll in "Stew-Roids".
- Ambiguously Gay: Peter called her a lesbian in one episode. It's most likely this is just Peter's offensive stupidity, but she's never proven to be straight either. On top of that, she didn't return Stewie's love for her, she kicked his ass like a tomboy, and she has the voice of a male in her head. She could be a lesbian, non-binary or transgender.
- Brainy Baby: Susie has the deep intellect of Patrick Stewart.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Before she was born in "Ocean's Three and a Half", Susie technically made a cameo in "Lethal Weapons". Peter listened to Bonnie's pregnant belly to feel for the baby's kick, and the shape of a little foot formed in Bonnie's belly, (from Susie), and gave Peter a painful black eye, when she kicked him.
- Fourth-Wall Observer: She is aware that she's in a TV show, and always has been. Most of the time, when she's on screen, she's Breaking the Fourth Wall to talk to the audience.Susie: This is Patrick Stewart here. How are you enjoying the episode, so far?
- I Was Beaten by a Girl: The girl to Stewie's "I" in one episode.
- Inner Monologue: Susie only talks, via Patrick Stewart's voice, in her inner monologue.
- Long-Lost Relative: Kevin went missing a while before she was born, she didn't meet him for the first time, until "Thanksgiving".
- Obfuscating Stupidity: She pretends to be a typical baby, but in her head, she actually thinks deeply profound thoughts, comparable to Stewie's, in the voice of Patrick Stewart.
- Practically Different Generations: She's just a baby, while her brother Kevin is a grown man.
- Thinking Tic: Most of the time, when she thinks, she tilts her head back and smiles at the camera.
- Vocal Dissonance: She, a tiny girl baby, has the deep voice of an adult male in her head.
The local pedophile who lusts after Chris.
- Affably Evil: As Stewie puts it: "Well, there's a pedophile up the street that nobody seems to be doing anything about, but it's mainly because he's so funny".
- Beware the Silly Ones: Because he's so old and feeble, it's easy to laugh at his lusting after young boys, since it's obvious he can't physically do anything to them in his extreme age. Except some episodes show he's actually a lot more vital than his habitual use of a walker suggests; in one episode, he reveals he's got a tricked-car designed to mimic an ice-cream van, whilst in "Point of Stew", he's shown casually doing an Underside Ride for the school bus. And in another episode when Quahog no longer has laws, he comes into the Griffin house with a gun and takes Chris away in front of everyone.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Downplayed, in that whilst he's normally very affectionate and friendly, if he gets frustrated, he'll sometimes revert to cursing and spiteful words. For example, when he meets Chris on his mail route and, after trying to coax him down to the basement for "popsicles" fails, he glowers at Chris's retreating back and whispers for him to "get (your) fat ass back here". In another episode, after returning from having been away, the Griffins find the phone's message bank full of messages from Herbert asking when Chris will be back, which devolves from coyly pleading for his return to flatly stating that "you're starting to piss me off, you little piggly son-of-a-bitch".
- Camp Gay: Downplayed, but he speaks in a very high, falsetto voice, which is an old stereotype of gay men and campy portrayals thereof.
- Dirty Old Man: Is an elderly pedophile that shows up from time to time just to say creepy stuff in his distinctive voice, usually to an unwary or perhaps wary Chris Griffin. Like the "Greased-up Deaf Guy", he was a one note gag character that was simply too offensively funny to not bring back. He'd never be funny if he wasn't so old and feeble.'
- Guile Hero: Occasionally. Most notably when he prevented Chris from befriending an actual Nazi.
- Hypocritical Humor: Called Brian a pervert for wanting to legalize gay marriage, despite himself being a gay pedophile.
- Intergenerational Friendship: Despite lusting after Chris, he's perfectly happy to consider the boy as his friend, even if nothing else comes of it.
- Karma Houdini: In spite of the fact that he isn't outright malicious or venomous, he is still a pedophile and while he's never been shown doing those things on screen, he still gets away with soliciting sex from young boys and most importantly no ones ever found out he's been stalking Chris, though Stewie seems to explain things it in "Spies Reminiscent of Us":Dan Aykroyd: Are there any local residents whom you've seen acting strangely?Stewie: Well, there's a pedophile up the street that nobody seems to be doing anything about, but it's mainly because he's so funny.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Whilst Herbert never gets anything resembling a realistic reaction for his pedophilia, the show does occasionally give him some comedic karma. For example, during the episode where he's asked to babysit the Griffin kids, he informs them that it's his bath day and he needs some help washing up, obviously intended to get bathed by Chris. Instead, Meg washes him. In another episode, he goes to a racing track and tries to hit on a jockey, who informs him that he's actually 48 years old — this leaves a ticked-off Herbert complaining that the whole place is a "giant mindf*k".
- Last-Name Basis: Only revealed to have the first name of John 8 seasons after he appeared.
- No, You: In one episode, Herbert (somehow) ends up asked to babysit the Griffin kids whilst Peter & Lois are away. When Meg complains that she's a 17-year-old girl and doesn't need Herbert here, Herbert responds that, as a 17-year-old girl, he doesn't need her there.
- Outside Ride: In "Point of Stew", whilst Stewie is caught hitching a ride under Brian's car, he has a brief encounter with Herbert doing the same thing to a school bus. The elderly man simply comments that it's a nice day for it, making it clear that he's doing this for fun.
- Pædo Hunt: His defining trait. While Herbert would technically be a hebephile based on his sexual attraction to pubescent 14-year-old Chris Griffin, he has on very much other occasions shown himself attracted to little boys preceding puberty as well, showing that the two attractions overlap.
- Papa Wolf: Granted, his intentions are a bit... unsavory regarding Chris, but it's generally not a good idea to threaten or harm the boy when Herbert's around.
- Refuge in Audacity: The entire concept of his character. Especially given that he first appeared in the third season, back when the show was a lot tamer than it is now. In one episode, Herbert actually begs God for the chance to sniff Chris's hat as Chris and Peter walk away, claiming that it's all he wants. A miraculous gust of wind then sweeps Chris's hat right into his hands, where Herbert sniffs it with relish and then darkly declares that "now (I) want more".
- Retired Badass: Served in World War II, and survived a concentration camp. Rescues Chris and Peter from a former Nazi he encountered back in World War II.
- Stalker with a Crush: To Chris, at least until he realizes that being with Chris wasn't going to work out.
- Straight Gay: Aside from his Camp Gay voice and his obvious lust for Chris (and other young boys), he doesn't act especially camp.
- Those Wacky Nazis: Was a prisoner of war in Dachau concentration camp after being shot down in World War 2 — he's not Jewish, like the Goldmans, he was sent there because they easily deduced he was gay (the wallet full of photos of little boys didn't help). Played for laughs in that his "hard labor" there was sorting out the old soda bottles from the camp's junk to be recycled, where the dregs would spill over his hands and make them all sticky.
- Two First Names: Both "John" and "Herbert" are names commonly used as a person's first name, which is why the reveal that "Herbert" is actually his last name in season 11 was a surprise.
- Uncatty Resemblance: His elderly dog, Jesse, shares most of his physical traits, right down to his Verbal Tic.
- Verbal Tic: He seems to whistle through his teeth with speaking, and he often hums contemplatively or mournfully.
The school nerd and classmate of Meg, whom he has a crush on. Son of Mort.
- Abhorrent Admirer: To Meg, who keeps rejecting him.
- Aroused by Their Voice: When he takes out his retainer, he has a deep, pleasing voice.
- Casanova Wannabe: In "Fistful of Meg," he tells a bully that he has "the scoop on the local babe scene." Additionally, it is revealed in "The Kiss Seen 'Round the World" that he is delusional and oblivious to the fact that his appearance is reviled by everyone (even his own father), believing himself to be "eye candy."
- Demoted to Extra:
- Used to appear a lot in the second through fourth seasons. However, after the show was brought back, he only gets occasional cameos, and spends entire seasons without being seen or even mentioned, even in situations where he should be.
- He appeared again in the Season 10 episode "You Can't Do That On Television, Peter!" However, he has about 2 lines tops and had no effect on the plot.
- After two cameos in Season 11 (one in the DVD version of "Friends Without Benefits" and a non-speaking one in "Road to Vegas"), he appeared in three Season 12 episodes (including two more speaking roles) and was mentioned in a third, which is sadly more attention than he has received in one season since Season 4.
- He was the focus of the subplot of Season 13's "Once Bitten" where he pretends to be friends with Chris in order to get closer to Meg. It ends with him feeing bad about using Chris and apologizes to him while leaving Meg behind and seemingly ending his crush on her for good. Since then, he's gone back to appearing on a semi-regular basis often sharing scenes with Chris.
- Dogged Nice Guy: Debatable. Some of the things he did to try and win Meg affection were underhanded and downright depraved.
- Extraverted Nerd: He's outgoing and laid-back.
- Hates Their Parent: "Follow the Money" implies that he had issues with his mother, as he taunt a bench dedicated to her money.
- Jerkass Ball: While he isn't as bad as Chris, Junior, or even Steve, there are times where can be a bit of an asshole. A particularly shocking example is in "Follow the Money" where he tells his late mother than she can rot in Hell while apathetically dumping money on a park bench dedicated to her.
- Jewish and Nerdy: His father is very Jewish, and Neil is the school nerd.
- Kiddie Kid: He's a teenager but he's so childish that his mom dresses him in his jammies, and he flails around like a baby.
- Like Father, Like Son: Played straight in appearance, but definitely not in personality. Neil looks just like his dad, but unlike his dad (who's mostly neurotic), he's an outgoing, laid-back guy who thinks he's God's gift to women.
- Missing Mom: Muriel was killed by Diane Simmons in the Season 9 premiere. Though as mentioned above, "Follow the Money" implies that he doesn't even seem to care that she's no longer alive.
The owner of Goldman's pharmacy. A walking Jewish stereotype.
- Ascended Extra: He first appeared as a bit character in season three, a whole season after his son first debuted. He later went on to become a Sixth Ranger of sorts to Peter's group of friends, and now has more appearances under his belt than his son.
- Beware the Nice Ones: He may act nerdy but he's not afraid to stand up for himself.
- Expy: Of The Jerky Boys character Sol Rosenberg, also voiced by Brennan, and more indirectly Woody Allen, who is portrayed nearly identically to Mort in both his appearance and voice in "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein."
- Good Parents: He's a good father to his only son Neil. His wife was also a good mother to Neil until she was Killed Off for Real.
- Greedy Jew: Mort takes this trope to its extreme and then some. In the episode "And Then There Were Fewer", he forgives his wife Muriel, on the spot, for illegally selling prescription drugs when he finds out she overcharged the buyer. In "Burning Down the Bayit", he literally cannot understand what it means to have a Buy One, Get One Free promotion (until the logic is applied in the context of a different store that he doesn't own, at which point he gets it). Mort's also been shown to go weeks without so much as opening his wallet.
- Jewish Complaining: In some of the earlier seasons but he does this. In one such instance, he went so far as to write an angry letter to Ritz over smashed crackers.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: His reaction when Cleveland returns to Quahog and he tells Mort he can't be in the opening as a backup dancer anymore.
- Sixth Ranger: Occasionally acts as the fifth member of Peter's circle of friends.
- Strongly Worded Letter: He apparently writes angry letters to companies all the time, demanding compensation for the smallest things, as revealed in a cutaway gag where he writes a letter to Ritz Crackers (and not for the first time, either) just because some of the crackers in the box he bought were broken.
Mort's wife and Neil's mother.
- Doting Parent: One episode implies she was this, as she'd put on Neil's feet pajamas and that her record was 28 second
- Greedy Jew: Downplayed but, according to Burning Down the Bayit, she could run the pharmacy so well was because she'd "rob them [customers] blind" when they were distracted.
- He Knows Too Much: She walked in Diane trying to plant the evidence.
- Killed Off for Real: In And Then Were Fewer, courtesy of Diane
- Look-Alike Lovers: And it's not just in looks but also in some of her mannerisms that she's a female Mort.
- The Lost Lenore: We see that Mort very much missed her after Diane killed her.
Recurring character with many jobs.
- Ambiguously Brown: Though he's speculated to be Latino/Hispanic.
- Camp Gay: Humorously, he shares the same voice with some of the gay characters used in cutaway guys.
- Catchphrase: "Oh nooooo! and "I knooooow!"
- Characterization Marches On: In his very first appearance, it was kind of implied that he was a pedophile (or, at the very least, can't tell when things come out wrong). In all subsequent appearances, he's easily the nicest character in the whole show and happily living with his boyfriend Jeffery (though he is a smidge irritated that they aren't married yet).
- A Day in the Limelight: The episode "Meg's Wedding", where he finally comes out to his parents and marries Jeffery.
- Ironic Name: His last name is "Straight" despite him being gay.
- Nice Guy: Probably the nicest characters in the whole show, which depending on the episode is really saying something.
- OOC Is Serious Business: He nearly loses his shit in "Friends of Peter G" when Peter and Brian bring alcohol in the very meeting designed to help people get over their addiction to it. He gives in, but still.
- Token Good Teammate: To the entire cast. He's one of the few characters who not only shows at least an iota of respect for Meg but also treats her like a genuine friend.
- Why Do You Keep Changing Jobs?: He gets around in the job market.