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Recap / Family Guy S 8 E 21 Partial Terms Of Endearment

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Airdate: June 20th, 2010 (UK)

Lois' best friend, Naomi (voiced by Julia Sweeney) asks Lois to be a surrogate mother, as she has conception issues, but when Naomi and her husband die in a car accident, Lois must choose whether or not to abort the baby—and Peter (after trying to injure Lois so she can miscarry) becomes a pro-life advocate.

NOTE: Because of how heated abortion and the pro-life vs. pro-choice debate is in America, this episode never saw any airtime on FOX, Cartoon Network, local syndication, TBS, or the FX Networks, nor is it available on Hulu or even Disney+/Star+. It did, however, get a stand-alone DVD release, was shown on overseas channels (albeit edited for time and content) in the United Kingdom and Australia, and was discussed briefly on the Family Guy live-action retrospective, "200 Episodes Later."

NOTE 2: For the purposes of neutrality, the politics of abortion will not be discussed on this page. Only information about the episode.

"Partial Terms of Endearment" contains examples of:

  • Author Tract: Subverted. Besides some of the usual Christian bashing when it comes to abortion, it doesn't favor or oppose abortion and actually shows the pros and cons of the issue. Sadly, this wasn't enough to let FOX run the episode.
  • Experimented in College: Lois and Naomi apparently hooked up in school before they married Peter and Dale.
  • Family Relationship Switcheroo: Discussed. Meg offers to be Dale and Naomi's surrogate, and Lois says, "Meg, it was hard enough on your body when you gave birth to Stewie ... just kidding!"
  • Insane Troll Logic: Some of Peter's responses to the rest of the family asking why Peter's against abortion.
    Brian: What if the woman's raped?
    Peter: She should've thought of that before asking me for directions.
    Brian: What?
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Peter lets out a deadpan "Ow" after falling to the canyon floor at the end of the Road Runner gag.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: The Count, who apparently dated Meg once, got the hell out of dodge after realising that she had three nipples.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Brian's desperate "Let me stay! Let me stay!" upon learning that Naomi is the person coming to visit is said in the same tone as the Cowardly Lion's voice.
    • One of the traps that Peter sets for Lois so she'll miscarriage is done in the style of Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.
    • Meg once dated The Count.
    "One nipple, ah-ah-ah. Two nipples, ah-ah-ah. THREE nip— oh hell no, I'm outta here."
  • Status Quo Is God: At the end of the episode, Lois tells the family that she's considered all the positives that will come from having another child... then Peter hastily informs us that she still got the abortion.
  • Very Special Episode: Downplayed. It's not overly dramatic about the issue like "Screams of Silence: The Story of Brenda Q" was with domestic violence (in fact, "Partial Terms of Endearment" has a lot of the humor you'd expect from a typical Family Guy episode), but it does touch on a serious issue and addresses it with little to no jokes or childish burns against the supporters and detractors.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: One cutaway shows Lois's mood swings the last time she was pregnant. During her mood swings, she vomits into her hands.