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'Family Guy' kills off a main character, viewers mourn cartoon loss

Family Guy 660 AP.jpg

This image released by Fox shows characters from the Fox animated series, "Family Guy." Fox is pulling from websites an episode of "Family Guy" that depicts mass deaths at the Boston Marathon and has no immediate plans to air it again. Fox spokeswoman Gaude Paez says the episode has been removed from Fox.com and Hulu.com.AP/FOX

'Family Guy' has killed off one of its most loved characters.

Audiences were shocked when Brian, the sophisticated family dog, was hit by a speeding car and lay lifeless on the road in last Sunday's episode.

The character, who had been in the show since the pilot, uttered "You've given me a wonderful life, I love you all," as he closed his eyes for the very last time.

In the episode titled Life of Brian, the Griffin family were quick to find a replacement pooch called Vinnie who is voiced by Tony Sirico, the actor that played Paulie 'Walnuts' Gautieri in The Sopranos.

"Family Guy" executive producer Steve Callaghan told E! Online that the writers thought Brian's fatal accident was a fun way to shake things up.

"We started talking about what the next couple episodes could be and we got very excited about the way this change will affect the family dynamics and the characters," Callaghan said.

Not surprisingly, fans went on Twitter to vent their frustrations.

Go to News.com.au for more entertainment news.

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