The Cleveland Show is an American animated television series that premiered on September 27, 2009, as a part of the "Animation Domination" lineup on Fox in the United States. The series was created by Seth MacFarlane, Mike Henry, and Richard Appel as a spin-off fromFamily Guy, which was also created by MacFarlane.
The family was conceived by MacFarlane after developing two animated series, Family Guy andAmerican Dad!. MacFarlane took the Family Guy' character Cleveland and his son Cleveland, Jr.but redesigned Junior. MacFarlane and Mike Henry pitched a 22 minute pilot to Fox which aired on September 27, 2009 but had been leaked on the internet in June 2009. Before the show premiered, the show had already been renewed for a 22 episode second season. After the first season of the show aired it was renewed for a second and was given the green light to start production. Shortly after the second season of The Cleveland Show aired in 2011, Fox renewed the series for a third season.
The show's family centers around father Cleveland Brown, who was a featured character onFamily Guy. His son Cleveland Jr. was also on Family Guy (although for this show he was given a redesign to become older, softly-spoken and obese). Three new characters were added to fill out the Brown/Tubbs family.
Since its debut, The Cleveland Show has received mixed reviews from media critics. Reviewers have criticised its similarities to MacFarlane's other shows, Family Guy and American Dad!, and the crass and crude content of its humour. The Parents Television Council named six of the program's first season episodes as the worst TV shows of the week. The show's first season received a viewership of appromixately six million, and it was nominated for an award at the 36th People's Choice Awards.
The theme song originally contained a line referring to Cleveland's "happy black-guy face," but this was replaced with "happy mustached face" to make the song more racially sensitive.List of The Cleveland Show characters
Cleveland's newly introduced family includes his new wife in her early forties, Donna Tubbs Brown (voiced by Sanaa Lathan); Donna's teenage daughter, Roberta Correta Tubbs (originally voiced by Nia Long, but now voiced by Reagan Gomez-Preston); and Donna's five year-old sonRallo Tubbs (also voiced by Mike Henry). Cleveland Jr. underwent a complete redesign for the show, becoming sensitive, soft-spoken and obese. The children may have been designed to be similar to the Griffin kids from Family Guy (a teenage daughter/Meg, a obese son/Chris, and a troublemaking infant or toddler/Stewie).List of The Cleveland Show voice actors
The Cleveland Show has four main voice actors and two additional voice actors, some of which play several roles. Mike Henry voices two of the show's main characters, Cleveland and Rallo. The voice of Cleveland was developed originally for Family Guy by Henry after being influenced by one of his best friends who had a very distinct regional accent. For the voice of Rallo, Henry has stated that he had originally created the voice over twenty years ago, when he had made a series of prank calls. In addition, Henry provides the voice of various recurring and one-time characters.
Sanaa Lathan voices Donna, the wife of Cleveland. In developing the character, Lathan said that the producers "wanted her to be educated, but to have some edge." Prior to voicing Donna, Lathan had only one other voice credit in a relatively low budget film entitled The Golden Blaze. In addition to the show, she also primarily worked as an actress in such films as Alien vs. Predator, Love & Basketball and The Family That Preys.
Reagan Gomez plays Roberta, the stepdaughter of Cleveland. Gomez has stated that she uses her own voice to portray Roberta, and that she herself gets mistaken to be a fifteen year old over the phone "all the time." Before Gomez was cast as Roberta, Nia Long had provided the character's voice during the first production season, before leaving to fulfill prior acting commitments.
Jason Sudeikis plays Holt Richter, one of Cleveland's drinking buddies and Terry Kimple, one of Cleveland's longtime friends who now works with him at Waterman Cable. Sudeikis originally began as a recurring cast member, but starting with the episode "Harder, Better, Faster, Browner", he was promoted to a series regular.
Kevin Michael Richardson, a recurring guest voice on Family Guy, portrays Cleveland Jr., as well as Cleveland's next door neighbor Lester Krinklesac. In portraying Cleveland Jr., Richardson drew inspiration from a character named Patrick that he had played on the NBC drama series ER who was mentally impaired and wore a football helmet. For Lester, Richardson stated in an interview that being African American, he had "run into a few rednecks in [his] time," and decided to simply perform a stereotypical redneck impression for the voice of Lester.
Other voices include that of Arianna Huffington as Arianna the Bear, Jamie Kennedy as Roberta's boyfriend Gabriel Friedman, a.k.a."Federline Jones", Will Forte as Principal Wally, Frances Callier as Cookie Brown, David Lynch as Gus the bartender and Craig Robinson asFreight Train Brown.List of The Cleveland Show episodes
The show, which was picked up to air a first season consisting of 22 episodes, was picked up by Fox for a second season, consisting of 13 episodes, bringing the total number to 35 episodes. The announcement was made on May 3, 2009, before the first season even premiered. Due to strong ratings FOX picked up the back 9 episodes of season 2 which would make a 22 episode season and bring the total episode count of the show to 44.
On June 10, 2010, Fox ordered a third season of The Cleveland Show, even before airing season 2, as a plan of early renewals to deserving new shows. The Cleveland Show was the highest rated new half hour show in the 18–34 demographics. On May 9, 2011, It was announced that FOX had picked up the show for a fourth season.