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Family Guy Fans Are Loving The Larry & Steve Reference In Season 21, Episode 6

Having been on the air for more than 20 seasons, and its humor being what it is, "Family Guy" has accumulated a wealth of self-references for fans to get. This year's Halloween episode, "Happy Holo-ween," seems to present a particularly deep cut, however. In short, Peter Griffin (Seth MacFarlane) creates a hologram of himself that tries to take over the Griffin family before being ultimately foiled and destroyed.

In its final moments, the hologram transforms into other animated characters, including a Peter that was drawn slightly differently in Season 1, Homer Simpson, and Fred Flintstone. Holo-Peter also briefly transforms into a short, bald, large-nosed, and notably skinnier man who might be less recognized by more recent fans. This is Larry of "The Life of Larry," MacFarlane's cartoon short about a man and his talking dog whose characters served as the basis for Peter Griffin and Brian (also Seth MacFarlane) in "Family Guy."

Fans loved the reference to Peter's origins

Fans loved the reference. A quick look at the episode discussion thread in the r/familyguy subreddit reveals as much, with u/Thekillerichi23 saying it made the episode for them.

Fans on Twitter joined in too. User @Matthew54105904 tweeted, "The fact that there's a 'Larry [&] Steve' shoutout is so cool!!" accompanied by a short video of the transformation. "Tonight's #FamilyGuy was great," tweeted @MrJoelGarcia9. "Also, as someone who watched What [a] Cartoon back in the 90s, I'm so glad to see 'Larry & Steve' finally get referenced."

Though Larry hasn't been seen in any new material since the late 1990s, the similarities between Peter and the other two animated characters have been pointed out before. The show itself contains numerous references to "The Flintstones," including a news anchor describing Peter as "a fat man who is inexplicably married to an attractive redhead" before putting up an image of Fred (Alan Reed) and Wilma Flintstone (Jean Vander Pyl) as an example of what they might look like (via YouTube).

The resemblance between Peter and Homer Simpson (Dan Castellaneta) — both dimwitted but loving suburban husbands and fathers whose ill-plotted schemes frequently get the family into hot water — is also noticeable, with Mad Magazine even skewering the similarities between the two shows as a whole in its October 2005 issue. The 2002 "Simpsons" Halloween episode, "Treehouse of Horror XIII," also slyly mocks Peter's likeness to Homer, with the sequence "Send in the Clones" featuring the Griffin patriarch among a massive crowd of imperfect Homer clones (via TV Tropes).