Family Guy is moving away from making fun of gay people -- material that has become synonymous with the Fox animated comedy since its 1999 debut.
In a meta moment from Sunday's episode, the show's main character, Peter Griffin, told a cartoon President Trump that the series would be "trying to phase out" gay jokes.
Griffin (very briefly) served as Trump's press secretary in the episode. His tenure ended after the fictionalized president sexually harassed Griffin's daughter, Meg, and Griffin faced off against the other "fat idiot who once had a hit television show and who over time has worn out his welcome."
Executive producers Rich Appel and Alec Sulkin confirmed to TV Line that Griffin speaks the truth about the show's conscious intent to move away from this brand of humor, which they said has evolved with the times.
"If you look at a show from 2005 or 2006 and put it side by side with a show from 2018 or 2019, they're going to have a few differences," Sulkin said. "Some of the things we felt comfortable saying and joking about back then, we now understand is not acceptable."
"It's almost unique to Family Guy, though I can think of one other show that's been on the air longer," Appel said. "But if a show has literally been on the air for 20 years, the culture changes. And it's not us reacting and thinking, 'They won't let us [say certain things].' No, we've changed too."
"The climate is different, the culture is different and our views are different," Appel added. "They've been shaped by the reality around us, so I think the show has to shift and evolve in a lot of different ways."