Did “Family Guy” really predict the horrific Boston Marathon bombings in an episode that aired last month? No, but that’s the latest hoax making the rounds on the Internet a day after the tragedy.
The carefully edited clip that supposedly supports this theory got so much exposure that “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane himself took to Twitter to denounce it.
“The edited Family Guy clip currently circulating is abhorrent,” he wrote. “The event was a crime and a tragedy, and my thoughts are with the victims.”
The edited clips came from an episode that aired last month titled “Turban Cowboy.” In the edited version, the show’s main character, Peter Griffin, appears to use a cellphone to trigger a pair of explosions in order to win a race.
While all the clips were taken from the episode in question, which did feature a terrorism-related story, they did not appear in such a way as to suggest that this was the inspiration for or a prediction of the Boston bombing.
The clip and theory was first put forth by conspiracy-theorizing talk radio host Alex Jones’ website InfoWars.com, whose founder tweeted shortly after the bombing on Monday that he suspected it was a “false flag” operation perpetrated by the U.S. government.
After getting wide dissemination online, the clip in question has been pulled from the YouTube website.
[Updated, 3:40 p.m. April 16: The Associated Press reports that Fox has elected to remove the “Turban Cowboy” episode of “Family Guy” from Hulu.com and Fox.com and has no immediate plans to re-air it.]