THE CLEVELAND SHOW “BFF’s” Season 3 Episode 1 – If you had any doubt that the best friends in question in “BFF’s,” the season premiere of the The Cleveland Show, would be Cleveland and Peter Griffin…then you don’t know Seth MacFarlane very well. Whatever else you can say about him, the man is the master of cross-promotion.

When he finds out that Peter has visited Stoolbend without so much as poking him on Facebook to tell him, Cleveland is despondent, wondering what he did to lose the friendship of a man who blatantly hates his own daughter. He becomes “that” friend…you know, the one who constantly calls and texts and writes on your wall. (In a brilliant nod to one of my favorite Family Guy eps, Peter’s ringback tone is “Bird is the Word.” Love it.)

When he finally resorts to making the trip to Rhode Island, Peter basically blows him off, telling him that he moved away and they’re not friends anymore. This after two seasons of random crossovers. Typical Peter.

So, Cleveland turns his attention to his new circle of friends in Virginia and convinces them all to go on canoe trip in the woods. Is that a banjo I hear? Again, if you were surprised that they ended up being kidnapped by redneck rapists, you’re beautifully naive about these shows.

When Cleveland’s plan to escape and return for his friends fails, it’s Peter to the rescue. After all, he can smell a Deliverance joke a mile away. After Peter and the evil monkey in Chris’s closet save the gang, Peter tells Cleveland that he has abandonment issues that caused him to push Cleveland away. Sure. That’s…convenient. Like most of Peter’s mental issues.

Meanwhile, Rallo gets an invitation to his two-year preschool reunion. One of my biggest pet peeves is graduation ceremonies for kindergarten and every flippin’ grade afterwards. In my day, you got a party and a certificate if you made it through elementary school, but it would be another six years of learnin’ before you got to wear a graduation cap. Although I suppose these days, every year a kid doesn’t drop out to grow weed is a reason to celebrate.

At the reunion, Donna is shamed into forcing Rallo to participate in a kiddie academic bowl. All the tutoring in the world can’t turn him into a book nerd, but who needs to know about bird calls when you can play poker and make a dry martini? Those are skills you can take to the bank.

All in all, it was a surprisingly flat episode of The Cleveland Show, especially as it kicked off the entire season. There were lots of laugh-worthy moments, but not as many as in the season finale last May. Looking forward to better things next week.

Best Lines:

Cleveland: He and I were BFF’s!
Donna: Black and Fat Friends?

Cleveland: Male friendship is not about emotions. I get that now and feel nothing about it.

What did you think of the episode? Will Donna ever get a friend of her own? What disease did Roberta get tested for: HIV, herpes or baby? Let me know below!