Although the COVID-19 production shutdowns have cut an ugly swathe through many of the TV productions of 2020, the world of animation has been a notable exception. Already operating in quasi-total isolation, TV animation has managed to truck along pretty comfortably with what appear to have only been minor disruptions. Hence, then, the not wholly surprising news that Fox has just renewed two of its long-running cartoon mainstays for not just one, but two seasons, with both Family Guy and Bob’s Burgers being renewed for a pair of seasons apiece. That’ll bring Family Guy up to season 20, while Bob’s Burgers will now extend into its 13th run.
Interestingly, Bob’s—which, like most of Fox’s home-produced scripted content, is now produced by Disney-owned 20th Television—is one of the rare animated shows that likely will have to adjust the way it does things in the COVID era. Uncommon for an animated series, the show’s cast (including H. Jon Benjamin, Dan Mintz, Eugene Mirman, Kristen Schaal, and John Roberts) usually record their lines together, helping to give the series its rapid-fire verbal pace. We haven’t heard anything directly about the show changing that format, but given the ongoing need for social distancing, it’s not hard to imagine the show having to change its long-celebrated policy.
Both Family Guy and Bob’s return to Fox this Sunday, as part of the network’s Animation Domination block; Family Guy will kick off this, its 18th season, with its 350th episode to date.