It's a Christmas miracle: Family Guy's pet pooch Brian brought back from the dead
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. (AP Photo/Fox)
Published Monday, December 16, 2013 6:37AM EST
'Family Guy' has brought Brian Griffin back from the dead.
Fans of the animated TV show were left distraught last month after the beloved canine, voiced by the show's creator Seth MacFarlane, was killed off in a car accident.
But the intellectual pooch was resurrected in the Christmas special, 'Christmas Guy', which aired Sunday night, after Stewie came up with a time travel plan to save his friend.
Brian's death had sparked much protest online with 150,000 people signing a petition demanding he be brought back.
In the special, Stewie goes to the mall with the Griffin family's new pet mutt Vinnie -- voiced by Tony Sirico -- and asks Santa for his best friend back. When that doesn't work, he remembers he has a time travel machine in his backpack and he uses it to go back to the moment just before Brian is tragically killed.
He says: "You're alive my friend! I couldn't live without you so I came back from the future to save your life."
Brian replies: "Thank you for saving my life. A lot of other families would have just gotten another dog and moved on."
After the episode aired, MacFarlane took to Twitter to tell his fans that they would have been "high" to think they'd killed off Brian for good.
The show's creator wrote: "Oh and hey ... thanks for caring so much about the canine Griffin. He is overcome with gratitude.
"I mean, you didn't really think we'd kill off Brian, did you? Jesus, we'd have to be f***ing high.
"And thus endeth our warm, fuzzy holiday lesson: Never take those you love for granted, for they can be gone in a flash."