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Seth MacFarlane teases 'very specific kind of comedy' for Peacock's upcoming 'Ted' series

MacFarlane returns to write, direct, executive produce, and voice the titular teddy bear.

By Josh Weiss
Ted (2012)

With Season 3 of The Orville finally completed and ready to seek out strange new worlds on Hulu this month, Seth MacFarlane can turn his full attention to Peacock's upcoming live-action Ted series.

Serving as a prequel to the pair of successful comedy films directed and co-written by the Family Guy creator, the show picks up in 1993 "shortly after Ted became kind of washed up," MacFarlane — who returns to voice the titular teddy bear — recently teased during a conversation with The Hollywood Reporter. "He’s now living outside Boston with John and his family, and he’s forced to kind of make his way through high school. So it’s a piece of Ted’s life in between what you saw in the opening titles of the movie and in the opening montage, and where we find him with Mark Wahlberg that’s a part of that story we haven’t told yet." 

MacFarlane (also wearing the hats of writer, director, executive producer, and co-showrunner) went on to describe the overall premise as "a pretty ripe area to draw from." He concluded: "Whether people still have an appetite for Ted remains to be seen. It’s a very specific kind of comedy, but we are allowing it to be what it is."

So far, Max Burkholder (Parenthood), Giorgia Whigham (The Punisher), Scott Grimes (The Orville), and Alanna Ubach (Euphoria) have been added to the cast.

Burkholder plays the teenage John Bennett, who navigates the pitfalls of adolescence with the guidance of his Thunder Buddy, Ted. Whigham takes on the role of Blaire Bennett, John's cousin and a politically correct college student, who isn't afraid to clash with her more traditionalist family. Grimes is John's father, Matty, a Blue Collar Boston native who doesn't like to be challenged, particularly by his liberal-minded niece (think of it as All in the Family, but with a talking teddy bear). Lastly, Ubach tackles John's mother, Susan, a sweet and caring woman who views the world through naive, rose-colored glasses.

In the original film, John's parents were portrayed by Ralph Garman and longtime Family Guy voice actress, Alex Borstein. 

Erica Huggins, Alana Kleiman, and Jason Clark will executive produce Peacock's small screen prequel alongside MacFarlane's fellow co-showrunners, Paul Corrigan and Brad Walsh. Fuzzy Door, UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group, and MRC Television are co-producers.

Ted 2 is currently streaming on Peacock. The first movie, which still holds the title of highest-grossing R-rated comedy that's not a sequel or based on an existing property, can be found on the Universal Pictures Home Entertainment website. Ted and Ted 2 bought in a combined $773 million at the worldwide box office.