As a huge Family Guy fan, I was surprised to hear last year that Seth MacFarlane chose to develop a spin-off starring Cleveland, the Griffin family’s slow-talking neighbor. Now, I love to see the guy pop in and out of scenes to deliver his deadpan punchlines — and he certainly boasts plenty of baggage for episode fodder, what with his love problems — but I felt like Cleveland’s measured method of talking would prove tiresome, especially since MacFarlane has found so much success with his patented rapid-fire writing and editing.
Of course, that was all before I found out today that Kanye West and Taraji P. Henson would be lending their voices to an episode of The Cleveland Show set to air in 2010. Any show that casts Henson in any capacity has promise in my opinion (memo to Hollywood: give the girl some more work!). Plus, I’ll tune into any program that features the oh-so-rare sight of Kanye West poking fun at himself (in this case, he’ll be voicing a rapper named Kenny West). And though I don’t find West to be as fun or obscure a cameo as, say, Quahog’s other West — that’s mayor Adam West for the uninitiated — the prospect of him coming back for more than one episode certainly makes Cleveland stronger (heh) in my eyes. What do you think, PopWatchers? Will you watch Cleveland now? Is this why Seth MacFarlane placed No. 1 on our list of the 25 smartest people in TV?