The 'Family Guy' mastermind broke box office records with a talking teddy bear named 'Ted' and charmed in his first hosting gig on 'SNL'. No wonder Oscar came calling.

By EW Staff
Updated November 30, 2012 at 05:00 AM EST

There are 7 billion people on the face of the earth, and Seth MacFarlane is clearly one of my favorites. It starts with liking the way he thinks, and the things he cares about. He’s a spirit and a thinker.

Seth’s characters illustrate the foolishness of the human condition. From Family Guy and his other animated programs American Dad! and The Cleveland Show to his feature-film debut, Ted, the umbrella of his work is exploring the difficulty of communication between humans (and stuffed bears). The hardest thing in the world is how we deal with each other, and that’s what those characters experience. If there were some way for Archie Bunker and Peter Griffin to meet each other, they’d be excellent neighbors.

Hosting the Oscars is a natural for him, which was obvious after he hosted Saturday Night Live and was in every single sketch he had the opportunity to be in. The other part of his life is singing show tunes and swing music. While his work in animation and as a storyteller drips with irony (I say ”foolishness” because I like the softer touch of that), his singing is total sincerity and counterweights that.

An awful lot of us lose ourselves in what we create, but this is an emotionally sound and healthy young man. He may be the first comedy writer in history to be described that way. And it has nothing to do with the fact that he is not Jewish. —Norman Lear

MacFarlane on
The best movies of the year
”Hmm, what have I seen in the theater? What a great thing for an Oscar host to say! They’re supposed to send me screeners so I can catch up. I don’t think I’ve seen anything classy yet. I’m going to say I saw Argo and it was truly, truly a great film. I haven’t seen Argo yet, but if you print that, it will look like I’m brainy.”

Family Guy

  • TV Show
  • 18
  • Seth MacFarlane
  • Fox