Farm-Fresh balance.pngYMMVTransmit blue.pngRadarWikEd fancyquotes.pngQuotes • (Emoticon happy.pngFunnyHeart.pngHeartwarmingSilk award star gold 3.pngAwesome) • Refridgerator.pngFridgeGroup.pngCharactersScript edit.pngFanfic RecsSkull0.pngNightmare FuelRsz 1rsz 2rsz 1shout-out icon.pngShout OutMagnifier.pngPlotGota icono.pngTear JerkerBug-silk.pngHeadscratchersHelp.pngTriviaWMGFilmRoll-small.pngRecapRainbow.pngHo YayPhoto link.pngImage LinksNyan-Cat-Original.pngMemesHaiku-wide-icon.pngHaikuLaconicLibrary science symbol .svg SourceSetting

The dramatis personae for Seth MacFarlane's second animated Sitcom, American Dad, featuring some background information on the characters and tropes they provide examples of.

Smith Family

Stan Smith

File:Stan Smith 7736.png


  The man of the house, a CIA agent later promoted to Deputy-Deputy Director. Although an extreme right-winger to the point of parody with a tendency to forget the lessons he's just learned, he still loves his family. Voiced by Seth MacFarlane.

  • Abusive Parents: He's a step up from his own father but he's often talking down and berating his kids while stepping on their dreams.
  • Acrofatic: Stan's got a rather large gut, but doesn't stop him from doing handsprings and being a proficient CIA agent.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Lampshaded often. In fact, the only lesson he's ever learned is that he doesn't learn lessons.
  • Anti-Hero: Type V -> Type IV.
  • Bald of Awesome: One episode revealed that Stan is completely bald, and has been trying to keep it a secret from everyone. Except everyone already knew, and none of them cared. He then decided to keep wearing his wig and no one ever cared enough about it to mention it again afterwards.
  • Alliterative Name
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: Stan harming/killing people is a knee-jerk reaction and usually just a sign that he's annoyed. If he's truly angry and allowed time to plan, he'll happily use his CIA connections and/or manipulative skills to ruin someone's life.
  • Big Beautiful Man
  • Bunny Ears Intelligence Officer: Despite his quirks, he seems to be very good at his job. In Widow's Pique, he casually kills three thieves with random things found the counter at a diner.
  • Control Freak: To the point that it takes God himself calling this out. As He lampshades, Stan is holding a gun to God's head. There isn't any metaphor that could even come close to doing justice.
  • Crazy Prepared
  • Cross Dresser: Doesn't hide from his family the fact that he wears panties and if it was socially acceptable, would wear mascara because it makes his eyes "pop like firecrackers".
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: This happens to him at the end of "Hot Water" for no real reason, but like Kenny McCormick, he is alive and well in the next episode.
    • Word of God is Stan died because they expected Hot Water to be the series finale, and reasoned "what better way to end the show by killing the main character?" The show wasn't cancelled, so Hot Water became a season premier.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: For how goofy and dumb he can be, he is a highly trained CIA Agent with access to world shaking intelligence and an endless supply of weapons.
  • Depending on the Writer:
    • His competence level varies wildly. Sometimes he can commit assassinations in his sleep, other times he can barely function.
    • Is he bald or not?
    • How rich is he?
  • Driven to Suicide: In Every Which Way But Lose. After Roger and Steve's football team defeats his, Stan, unable to cope with even the tiniest failure (he may have lost the championship game but he still got the title), tries to kill himself. Thankfully Steve pulls him out of it.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Frequently asks this considering he's a CIA Agent.
  • Eagle Land: Type 2 Incarnate.
  • Flanderization: Believe it or not, Stan in the first episode was the example of a stereotypical conservative, obsessed with politics, Ronald Reagan, America and keeping his family safe, he was an extremist, but deeply cared about his family and was really overprotective, but by the second episode, he began to evolve into a Jerk with a Heart of Gold, however at the end of the day, despite his selfish aspects, feels bad about it and learns a lesson every episode, even though it's Aesop Amnesia.
  • Freudian Excuse: Stan was extremely unpopular in his childhood due to his nerdy ways. As a result he bully's Steve for also being nerdy hoping to break him of said habits, in order for Steve to have the life he didn't.
    • Additionally, his father was never around, which didn't exactly teach him good parenting.
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse: Yes he's a man and everyone rubbernecks... but the trial was about insurance fraud, which he definitely did commit.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: He was an utter nobody in high school and now frequently manipulates events on the geopolitical stage to alleviate boredom.
  • Going Native: Stan has a strong tendency to do this; lampshaded by Francine in "Stan of Arabia".
  • Happily Married: To Francine, but they have an equal amount of neglection and unfaithfulness with love.
  • Heteronormative Crusader: He gets better as time goes on.
  • Heroic BSOD: Goes through quite the epic one in Daesong Heavy Industries after Steve proves that the Bible is a logical inconsistency, full of contradictions.
  • Heroic Comedic Sociopath
  • Hilariously Abusive Childhood: His father left him when he was young and his mother forced Stan to fill his role as provider despite being eleven years old. As a result, he is very emotionally stunted and has unrealistic expectations of the people around him.
  • Hot Dad: Looks pretty good if you don't mind the gut.
  • Jerkass: Most of the time. His Jerk with a Heart of Gold moments are usually overshadowed by some of his crueller acts, such as a scheme to get back at a car salesman that happened to involve abandoning his own family as prerequisite.
    • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Arguably Stan's callousness has been toned down or at least been placed in more well-intentioned light in later seasons. It is a rule for the creative team that, in his own mindset, Stan's actions are for the well being of his family and country.
  • Kissing Under the Influence: With Roger during their trip to Atlantic City. They were both drunk, and Stan agreed to the most intimate experiences of Roger's species. Roger ended up knowing all of Stan's memories, but not vice versa -- this was especially humiliating for Roger because Stan was actually Roger's first.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Numerous episodes go out of their way to emphasize this, especially The Most Adequate Christmas Ever, where God actually had to tell Stan face-to-face that no, he does not know everything and he can't.
  • Lantern Jaw of Justice: Frequently commented one.
  • Large Ham
  • Manipulative Bastard
  • Momma's Boy: In fact, he is a downright (non-romantic) Yandere for her.
  • My Eyes Are Leaking: "What's this? Some sort of tear like substance."
  • Papa Wolf: He might not agree with Hayley, and he might not have much in common with Steve, but if anyone insults or harms either of them, that person's going to be in pain for a long while.
    • Do not call his daughter a whore.
    • For all that he hates Jeff, if it means Hayley will be happy, Stan will pull him out of the fire.
  • Patriotic Fervour
  • Politically Incorrect Hero: He's a big ol' bigot in many ways, but he generally learns An Aesop about it... for a while.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: If he's not acting like a three-year-old, he's killing someone.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Manly Man to Steve's Sensitive Guy.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: He's always Dressed to Kill.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Frequently acts narcissistic about his looks and "intelligence". May also apply as Inferiority Superiority Complex when it's found out he wasn't always "the stallion he is today".
  • Standard Fifties Father: Tries to be this. Could be considered a deconstruction.
    • In a DVD-exclusive special on the creation of American Dad, Seth [MacFarlane] describes the show as "What would happen if a 1950s anti-Communism short film announcer had a wife and kids?"
  • Stock Scream: Has one of his own.
    • Which is relentlessly parodied in one episode. Stan, when his rocket boot malfunctions, is thrown into a knife shop, a lemon juice fountain, and a cactus farm, among other things, screaming the exact same scream every time.
    • The episode A Smith In The Hand, where Stan discovers the joys of masturbation, has a different Stock Scream that they use every time Stan sets off the fireworks.
  • Stop Helping Me!: Hurricane! drastically shows that Stan has got no idea what to do in a crisis situation, and despite Francine's plea to stop helping, Stan doesn't listen and keeps making the situation worse.

 Francine (sadly/shocked): You harpooned me. I asked you to go and get help, and you harpooned me.

  • Straight Man: He tries to be this, but is really much more of a Large Ham.
  • Strawman Political: He's an exaggerated stereotype of hyper-patriotic Republicans. Though much less so as the show went on.
  • Too Much Alike: Most of his conflict with Hayley stems from this. Despite being a liberal, she's just as passionate and committed to her beliefs as Stan.
  • Troubled Sympathetic Bigot
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: Has elements of this in his relationship with his father Jack, and this trait is very prominent in his son Steve.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Often the cause of his Jerkass antics.
  • Would Hit a Girl: An early episode had him beat the crap out of a bunch of strippers unprovoked. And it was awesome.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He fears seagulls. Or rather he feared them, as he mentions he got over the fear in a later episode where he interacted with them (a Hand Wave, as the plot required said interaction).
    • In a later episode, he bluffs to having a fear of fountains claiming they cause him to decapitate ducks in a rage.

Francine Smith (née Ling, Dawson)

File:Francine Smith 3308.png


  The matriarch, wife of Stan and mother of Hayley and Steve. A fairly happy housewife, if not a little loopy at times, although she does wish she could do stuff outside the house other than grocery shopping. During her years growing up, she was the adopted daughter of the Chinese Lings after her birth parents, the Dawsons, abandoned her as a baby at an airport since bringing babies to first class wasn't allowed. Prior to hooking up with Stan, she was very promiscuous (currently has the largest rose garden dedicated to the men she had sex with prior to meeting Stan) and wild. Voiced by Wendy Schaal.

  • Abusive Parents: Can be considered this or an extreme version of My Beloved Smother to Steve, often manipulating him and sabotaging his growth, such as framing him for drugs or keeping him on breast milk, so that he'll remain dependant on her.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Shifts somewhere between this and an outright Bitch in Sheep's Clothing, Depending on the Writer (much like Lois on Family Guy, though granted she is called out on it). Her personality often tends to come off as unpredictable to say the least.
    • Let's just say, even Stan (who usually has a very low sense of self-preservation) is smart enough to be scared of her when she gets angry. Example? Season 1, episode 4.
    • She nonchalantly admitted to stabbing her college roommate to death while the Smiths were having dinner at a restaurant.
  • Bi the Way: Sort of. She has had sex with women before, and seems perfectly willing to make out with a woman to get backstage at a rock concert. But she is primarily straight, compared to Linda Memari.
  • Blonde Republican Sex Kitten: Sort of. Compared to Stan, Francine is much more apolitical (she likely doesn't understand politics in general).
  • Buxom Is Better: Stan even calls her "Big Boobed Blondie" in an early episode.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: The brief times her head comes back to earth, she can be very intelligent. The rest of the time... well... remember the box she thought was a TV? Nuff said.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Francine killed her college roommate and spent an unknown amount of time in prison. When challenged to turn a shoe into a weapon, she does it in seconds much to Roger's admiration.
  • Dumb Blonde: But not too dumb.
  • Ethical Slut: She really got around when she was younger, but all in the name of partying and free love.
    • She claims her first time was with a group of angry construction workers.
  • Expansion Pack Past
  • Extreme Doormat: Often for Stan and Roger, though she stands up for herself when pushed too far.
  • Former Teen Rebel
  • Gasshole: Has been seen belching loudly as a throwaway gag on occasion, usually after drinking something.
  • Genius Ditz: For the brief periods of time when she tried to pursue something outside of being a housewife, she is ridiculously good at what she does. To the point where she once became and oceanologist, and published a paper on how she found a thought-to-be-extinct species! Of course, Stan always brings things back to a screaming halt (to the point where he deliberately sabotaged the American economy because that was the only way to stop her career as a real estate agent).
  • Housewife
  • Happily Adopted: To the point that she didn't care to meet her birth parents until she found out she was being left nothing by her adopted ones (but only because they knew she could survive without an inheritance while her sister Gwen couldn't).
  • Happily Married: To Stan.
  • Hidden Depths: Is surprisingly well-read on the Epic of Gilgamesh. As Stan lampshades, he's never seen her read a magazine!
  • Hot Mom
  • Mama Bear: Messing with Steve and Hayley is a sure way to get you killed by Francine, whether you're her husband or not. When Jeff seemingly decided to break off his engagement with Hayley for $50,000, Francine was so disgusted she tried to kill Jeff by unloading Stan's gun into his face. If it wasn't for the fact that Stan removed the bullets, Jeff would be dead right now. And when she discovered Stan had been bullying Steve in order to toughen him up, Francine chased him through the school, jumped out a window, and ran after him with glass in her hair until he drove off. She then rammed his car off the road with her's.

  Stan: What the hell, Francine! You t-boned me bro!

  • Mysterious Past: Francine claims to have been in the thrall of an abusive Persian which Stan rescued her from.
  • Parental Abandonment: Her real parents casually left her at an airport after being told they couldn't bring any children in first class. They could have brought her on the flight, just not in first class.
  • Pink Means Feminine: Pink is her favorite color.
  • Really Gets Around: She has a sex garden (a bush planted for every man she slept with) so big it was on the cover of sex garden magazine.
  • Retired Badass: She was once in a fight club and in prison, and if you hit her Berserk Button she becomes a Combat Pragmatist who will do anything short of killing her family members if they cross her (she rammed Stan with a four-wheel-drive!).
  • Rooting for the Empire: In-Universe, she admits that she supports the Axis powers.
  • Stalker with a Crush: When she was younger she had a crush on her algebra teacher, Mr. Feeny. He didn't take her seriously, and then his wife found her in their closet smelling his clothes and cutting herself. Francine lied to the police about them being lovers, so he was arrested and eventually killed himself in prison.
  • Stay in the Kitchen
  • Taking the Heat: For Gwen in "Now and Gwen". It was touching enough by Stan called in a favour to have her let off the hook while Gwen was arrested for breaking parole.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Girly Girl to Hayley's Tomboy.
  • Too Dumb to Live: As Hayley rages, who smokes in a science lab!?
  • Women Are Wiser
    • Not So Above It All: While she is much more sane than Stan, she still engages in zany schemes, like trying to assassinate George Clooney because she felt he upstaged her (season 1 finale).
      • Though some episodes avert this by making her more socially-awkward and Stan closer to Earth.
  • Yandere: To her son, Steve (non-romantic example).
    • Actually, Francine has moved away from this aspect in the later seasons, and when San starts having issues with Steve growing up Francine's the one who has to set him straight.
  • Younger Than They Look: Francine's able to unintentionally pass herself off as a teenager when she's up to it. In the first season, after Stan accidentally erased the last twenty years of her life from her memory, Francine noticed no significant change in her physical appearance (except for pubic hair).

Hayley Dreamsmasher Smith-Fischer

File:Hayley Smith 3031.png


  Daughter and the oldest of the two Smith siblings. As a kid, she and her father were close due to sharing the same beliefs, but as she became a young adult, her views became the complete opposite of her dad's, causing the two to butt heads often; for instance, she's in favor of gun control, while he isn't. That's not to say that she doesn't get Aw, Look -- They Really Do Love Each Other moments with Stan, and shares more than a few personality traits from her father, both negative and positive. Voiced by Rachael MacFarlane (Seth's sister).

  • The Artifact: Arguably even more than Klaus, who one can argue has never really been a major character. Hayley was the second character created for the show after Stan, when the premise was supposed to be a modern "All in the Family". When politics was phased out in the first two seasons, Hayley's screen time and storylines were dramatically reduced. Starting to get averted following Season 9.
  • Audio Erotica: Roger falls head over heels in love with her after hearing her sing "Makin Whoopee." In his defense, it is amazing.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Puts her mind into a goldfish body in One Fish, Two Fish to play the part of Klaus' wife and stop him from getting deported.
  • Balloon Belly: In Camp Refoogee.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Which lets her show off her navel ring.
  • Berserk Button: She does not take breakups well (provided that she is not the one who breaks up).
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Stan enrolled her in a program to become a CIA sleeper agent when she was 5. If you say the right combination of words, she becomes a trained killer.
  • Brilliant but Lazy: It's shown several times that, when forced into a new situation, Hayley excels at it in ways not even Steve could. She has the attention span of a humming bird however and really can't be bothered.
  • Daddy's Girl: In her youth and on occasion.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Usually to her father.
  • Demoted to Extra: Considering how little scenes and lines she has in recent seasons and that here are fewer episodes and subplots about her she tends to fit this trope.
  • Electra Complex: Hayley once entered a relationship with Stan's C.I.A. double, Bill... yeah. Though it does show that want Hayley really wants is her father's love.
  • Embarrassing Middle Name: Dreamsmasher.
  • For Want of a Nail
    • After years of Stan and Steve trying and failing to reform Jack, Hayley does so in under two minutes with Jamaican reggae.
    • Hayley used to be happy and energetic until her 7th birthday where she saw a man beating a baby seal to death on the news turning her into a dour environmentalist.
  • Granola Girl: In deep contrast to Stan.
  • Hartman Hips: In Roger's words, Hayley may not have asked for a Diet Coke but her thighs did.
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Hayley is the Supreme Commander, Numbuh 362.
  • Hypocrite: A lot of humor tends to revolve around this. In some cases she is incredibly shallow about her own ethics and views, albeit Depending on the Writer.
    • Although she says that she is a feminist, she secretly dresses as a Fifties housewife and bakes pies, entering them in contests under the name "Carlotta Montarrey".
    • She dumps boyfriends, frequently Jeff, coldly and nonchalantly on numerous occasions (perhaps most notably dumping Avery Bollock over phone, mid way through a presentation, on live TV, a second before he was going to promote Stan) and is occasionally outright termed as a "slut". When a boy dumps her however, she goes out and out Ax Crazy (to the point that the police have threatened her to have her put in jail for life if she gets dumped again).
    • In Camp Refoogee, she pigs out at the UN instead of helping the African refugees (which Stan did with gusto!)
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Everyone she went to high school with has made it.
  • Iconic Item: Her headband.
  • Informed Deformity: It's not as bad as Meg Griffin but some characters, usually Klaus and Roger, have commented on how Hayley is hideous.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: It's shown several times that Hayley's hot-button dogma far outweighs her knowledge of things.
  • Likes Older Men: At least in the realm of brief hookups. She's dated Avery Bullock (who's already bald and grey) and Bill (who's presumably the same age as her father).
  • Mama Bear: In Season's Beatings, despite denying any maternal instincts, the minute she sees the baby Jeff adopted she starts sobbing uncontrollably with joy over "her baby". To the point that she was willing to kill Stan to protect Nemo, even if he is the Anti-Christ.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Masculine Girl to Steve's Feminine Boy.
  • Ms. Fanservice
  • Not So Different: Her and Stan. Despite their contrasting views, they still share quite a few personality aspects; they are stubborn, self righteous and politically extreme people who often show a disregard for their partner (when she is with Jeff anyway) and try and force them to conform to their world view. When the family goes on The Amazing Race (or a trademark friendly pastiche), she and Stan work flawlessly together.
  • Out of Focus: Since about season 3 onward, compare her screen time and plot/sub-plot focus to Stan, Francine, Steve and Roger. In some episodes, she's lucky to have comparable screen time and lines to Klaus. See The Artifact above. Averted following Season 9.
  • Real Life Relative: Voiced by Seth MacFarlane's sister Rachel.
  • Soapbox Sadie
  • Straw Hypocrite: At her very worst. While she does show genuine devotion to her beliefs at times, a lot of her actions seem to be solely to outrage her Control Freak father, and has attempted to bail out a few good times she is made to go through with the consequences of her actions.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Minus the large chin, she's a smaller, feminine version of Stan and Jack. She also bears some resemblance to her mother.
    • A plot point in Stannie Get Your Gun where Roger points out how much Hayley looks Stan while Steve looks nothing like him.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Surprisingly, averted. In Roy Rogers McFreely, Hayley points out to Stan that, since Roger's in charge and his views are counter to his, Stan is now part of the counterculture, and therefore on the same side with Hayley. Rather than argue, Stan realizes she's right and the two form a group to undermine Roger's control on the neighbourhood. The episode showed that, if not for their clashing points of view, Stan and Hayley would get along great.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Tomboy to Francine's Girly Girl.
  • Too Much Alike: Her main problem with Stan. They're both as driven but on opposite sides of the political spectrum.
  • The Unfavorite: Her middle name says most of it, as well as Stan's disdain for her and Francine's blatant favoritism for Steve.
  • Unstoppable Rage: If the guy is the one who ends the relationship, she'll go on a destructive rampage.
    • Averted in the episode "American Dream Factory", where illegal Mexican immigrant Paco breaks off a relationship with her, with no adverse effects. Of course, this is likely due to the fact that this episode is almost two years older than Pulling Double Booty, the episode where this trait made its debut.
    • She also was a holy terror during various stages of puberty: when told that she had to wear tampons now that she was on her period, Hayley (who was wearing a skirt) threw the tampon box away and sat on the Smiths' new white couch, she yelled at her parents for not getting bigger boobs, and when Roger cracked a joke about a pimple on her face, she threw Roger through a window and set the living room on fire.
    • She beat up Snot for taking her panties.
  • Weirdness Magnet: She always seems to attract questionable men, and being sucked into an environmental cult with a man who planned to be turned into a tree, as well as having dinner with a psychopathic serial killer who just killed his father.
  • "Well Done, Daughter" Girl: Several episodes show that all Hayley wants is Stan's approval. It's why she's so eager to date Bill (Stan's body double). What she really wants is the love of her father.
  • Woman Scorned: To it's most extreme. See above.

Steven "Steve" Anita Smith

File:Steve Smith 8232.png


  The younger of the Smith siblings. A nerdy teenager who has his own circle of nerd buddies and quests for tail. While otherwise unsuccessful at the game of love, he does have an on-again/off-again relationship with heavyset goth Debbie Hyman, which seems to have resumed as of 'Escape From Pearl Bailey'. Voiced by Scott Grimes.


Roger Smith

File:Roger Smith 4760.png


  An alien who self-describes as effeminate and alcoholic who was taken in by the Smiths after he saved Stan from death by grenade during a lockdown at Area 51. Also a master of disguise out of necessity, to avoid suspicion from the rest of the planet. Voiced by Seth MacFarlane.

  • Alien Among Us: He was the Roswell crash.
  • Aliens Are Bastards: At his worst, but he’s usually just a jerk.
  • Always Camp
  • Anal Probing: On Stan during their trip to Atlantic City. They were both drunk, and Stan agreed to the most intimate experiences of Roger's species. Roger ended up knowing all of Stan's memories, but not vice versa -- this was especially humiliating for Roger because Stan was actually Roger's first.
  • Anti-Hero: Type V. He would probably be a straight up Villain Protagonist if it were not for his Pet the Dog moments.
  • Attention Whore
  • Becoming the Mask: As he himself says, unless there's something really emotionally shaking, the persona just takes over.
  • Beyond the Impossible: He has a persona named Ricky Spanish who's even more of a Jerkass than Roger himself and is hated by every single person in Langley Falls. At the end of that episode, you can add Steve to the list, since "Ricky" framed him for robbery and got him sent to jail.
  • Bi the Way: Confirmed as of You Debt Your Life. After realizing that realizing Andy Dick took his place after he moved out (temporarily), we get this quote:

  Roger: Oh my God! Another fey, pansexual, alcoholic nonhuman...I've been replaced!

  • Big No: Has had a few of his own, though not as many as Steve.
  • Bigger Bad: For his entire species. His cheating on Emperor Zing caused him to renounce love and to kidnap people from across the galaxy to serve as slaves.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: Used to excellent effect. He's 60% electricity, has Super Speed (as in Superman levels), has insanely powerful leg muscles, is fireproof, has a Healing Factor, can bud off homonculi, and is Long Lived to name a few.
  • Breakout Character: Hasn't quite supplanted Stan as the main character, but he's come close.
  • Bunny Ears Lawyer: Just about any of Roger's previously established personas are extremely competent at what they do, the most blatant example being Jeannie Gold, wedding planner (and prostitute). And it's shown that, without those personas running through Langley Falls, the city would fall apart.
  • Clark Kenting: His disguises. Eventually explained away by the fact that his skin is so featureless, people just assume the outfit's most stereotypical personality.
  • Comedic Sociopath
  • Dark and Troubled Past: For the large part, the more we learn about Roger's background, the more depraved an individual he seems.
  • Depending on the Writer: Sometimes he hates Klaus. Sometimes he and Klaus are Heterosexual Life Partners.
  • Desperately Looking for a Purpose In Life
  • Determinator: If his motives are selfish enough, he can achieve ANYTHING. He pursues Haley and Jeff with the money they cheated Stan out of across the entire planet. When he's convinced to kill the Smith family, he's able to escape from an excessively secure underwater prison. Not even leaving the planet is enough to escape him.
  • Disappeared Dad: He ate him when he was 15. Apparently this is another of his species' sociopathic tendencies.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Frequently plays this trope to its most extreme. One notable example being when he conspires to make Steve's life a living hell after Steve ate his cookie and said: "You snooze, you lose." And that was him going easy on someone.
    • One episode has Stan calling Roger a selfish fat failure. Roger responds by planning on destroying the planet.
    • After starting a chauffeur service and trying to be as polite and respectful as possible, he gets stiffed for twenty dollars by five frat boys. Roger proceeds to hunt each one of them and run them down, in the limo, even when the last one managed to get on a plane. Roger somehow managed to get on the plane's wing, run the guy down by driving through the plane, and kills everyone on board. As he and Klaus are parachuting down, he sees a stewardess parachuting next to them, and unbuckles her for no good reason other than he's "got the blood lust".
    • Another episode had Roger attempting to kill the entire Smith family because they roasted him for his birthday (even though he was sure he wanted it and he had a huge misconception on what a roast is). When he finally gets a hold of everyone, he forces the Smiths to roast each other, but it backfires because they are used to making fun of each other.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Originally he was a shy shut-in whom even Hayley and Klaus casually pushed around. Episode 5 even treated his wearing a disguise as a some great invention instead of something he'd been doing for deades.
  • Expansion Pack Past: His life since his arrival to Earth during the Roswell incident.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Even he's terrified of Ricky Spanish.
    • He's horrified that Francine has kept Steve on breast milk,
  • Faux Affably Evil: Roger when he's in a manipulative mood. He can act nice if he wants to be at times, before stabbing them in the back and/or abandoning them.
  • Flanderization: His affinity for costumes and dress up acts, to the point some literally take over his personality. His Jerkass traits also initially just came with the quirkiness of his personality and were much more toned down. As time progressed, his callousness is canonically accepted as his defining trait (to the point he'll actually die without acting consistantly cruel).
  • For Halloween I Am Going as Myself: Went to a sci-fi convention without a disguise. Oddly enough, this was the one time he avoided interaction with people.
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse: Discussed in Frannie 911. Francine will write off anything Roger does because Culture Justifies Anything but Stan argues that Roger has been on Earth long enough to know not to be a Jerkass. Then it's revealed that Roger's actual Freudian Excuse is that if he doesn't be an asshole, his bitchiness will turn into a bile and poison him but even he's clearly taking it to far to the point that Stan beating him up is the only way to balance the scales.
  • Good Hurts Evil: He must be an asshole lest his bitchiness turn to bile and poison him from the inside out.
  • The Greys: Which is why his costumes work so well. He himself is so featureless.
  • The Gump: In his lifetime he's responsible for creating disco in the 1970s (through a time paradox, admittedly), instigating the death of Biggie Smalls, creating Jar Jar Binks, inventing ecstasy in the 1990s, and turning Raven-Symoné into an actress (after he kidnapped her from a park when she was a child).
  • Heroic BSOD: In "Wiener of our Discontent", he is put out of action when he finds out he was supposed to be a crash test dummy
  • It's All About Me: While pretty much all the family display this trait on occasion, Roger takes it to sociopathic extremes.
  • Jerkass: Can shift into a comedic monster on occasion. Depending on the Writer, he's shown to be perfectly willing to exploit or even murder his closest friends for minor offenses or indulgences.
    • In the Blood/Freudian Excuse: It would literally kill Roger to be nice. His species have to let their 'bitchiness' out frequently otherwise it vents out in bile and vomit.
    • Took a Level In Jerkass: Roger was more toned down in early episodes, acting little past an obnoxious Cloudcuckoolander and showing more frequent gestures of genuine care and sympathy to the Smiths. As his costumes and outside lifestyle became more active however his apathy and psychotic traits became more and more prominent.
      • In spite of Taken a level of Jerkass he still has moments of clarity
      • Pet the Dog: Despite having little to no sense of empathy the majority of times, he is often shown to genuinely care about Stan. The entire reason he came to be with the Smiths is because he went out of his way to save Stan from a botched CIA attack. Even in later episodes Roger's friendship is sometimes exploited by Stan, which is saying a lot considering the former's usual tendancies.
      • Vile Villain Saccharine Show: On occasion such as in "The Talented Mr. Dingleberry".
  • Karma Houdini: Has he ever suffered for his horrible actions?
    • Ironically how much he suffers is usually reverse proportional to his own misdeeds. He can get away with all sorts of horrific and outright murderous schemes but the odd time he plays The Chew Toy is usually when he has done nothing wrong.
    • There are however some episodes where he fails to get away with his atrocities. For example in 'The People vs. Martin Sugar', Stan had the jury vote him guilty thus leading the judge (tearfully) to sending him to prison.
  • Lack of Empathy: To extremes. The first time he felt empathy for someone over himself was such a shock to his mindset that he developed a split personality (one with far more redeeming aspects than his own).
  • Large Ham
  • Laughably Evil: He shows little, if any thought for his family and friends' well being, and committed all sorts of heartless or outright murderous acts for the most trivial and petty reasons and so it goes without saying he is a fan favorite.
  • Manipulative Bastard
  • Mysterious Past: He's apparently 1600 years old. Who knew? We also have no idea what his race is called except that their home planet is snowy.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Among which include being flame-retardant, ultra-buoyancy, the ability to learn one's memories by probing them, the ability to change costumes in under a second (usually done off-screen or when Roger throws up a cloud of confetti), and the ability to move "really, really fast."
  • Overprotective Dad: Surprisingly without crossing into abusive territory when he becomes Steve's legal guardian.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Has a wardrobe full of them.
    • Justifiably in Stanny Tendergrass, it's revealed that there is at least one persona that a person CANNOT see through, and instead sees Roger actually as that person. For Stan, it is Mr. Vanderhill, Francine, a Korean kid who shoots pool with a giant chopstick, Hayley's is her sandal repair man and Steve's is Elisha Wiltner, who Steve went on 9 dates with.
    • It's later revealed that his status as The Greys lets him get away with this. He's so featureless that the human subconscious fills in the blanks of the personas.
  • The Power of Hate: The very entity keeping his species' alive (see above). Naturally The Power of Love is toxic to them as a result.
  • Psychopathic Manchild
  • Reality Warper: A subtle case. Whenever he comes up with a backstory for one of his personas, logic bends to his will to make those backstories true. This includes being the birth mother of two fully grown men, and also being the teenage birth son of a human family, complete with pictures of him growing up! Roger is perhaps the greatest actor ever! Surpassing even Fred Savage.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Claims to have killed his father.
  • Super Speed: Allowed him to fake the death of a persona in Season 6 and it's probably how he gets from place to place in different personas so quickly.
  • The Sociopath: Self-confessed, no less. When he becomes a Dirty Cop (after being on the force for 3 hours) he says that

"Plus I'm a sociopath so all this fits me like a glove."

  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch: Tends to say these at least once an episode.
  • Truly Single Parent: To Rogu.
  • Token Evil Teammate: None of the Smiths are particularly saintly in behaviour, however Roger is the most consistently malicious of the cast. Less evident in earlier episodes where Roger was more sympathetic with Stan or Klaus usually acting as the more malevolent of the family.
  • The Unfettered: Playing into his Lack of Empathy, Roger will cheat, abuse or even murder others without a second thought to achieve his goals. Taken to absurd lengths at times since he can find even menial goals and ambitions and rotate their ends around completely callous and deranged schemes (a plan to get a free T shirt involved him manipulating Francine and Hayley to try and kill each other).
    • The Ubermensch: YMMV, but if it is at all possible to play this trope strictly for laughs, you could make a case for Roger. He is goal oriented, amoral, refuses to accept outside authority, and if he wants something, even something totally impossible, he makes it happen through nothing more than sheer force of will and a complete ignorance of objective reality.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Type 1 with Stan, Steve and at times Klaus.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: In contrast to the rest of the major characters.

Klaus Heissler

File:Klaus Heissler 5637.png


  An East German athlete trapped in the body of a goldfish thanks to a scheme by the CIA to prevent him from winning the gold at the 1986 Winter Olympics because he was from the "communist East." Stan was assigned to looking over Klaus, and as such the talking fish has become an honorary member of the Smith family. Voiced by Dee Bradley Baker.

  • Accent Adaptation: In the German dub, he has a Saxon accent. (Klaus was East German, afterall.)
  • All Germans Are Nazis: At the very least, he does seem to sympathize with the Nazis somewhat.
    • The German dub changes this, implying he is a communist and former Stasi member.
    • He once got a horrified reaction when he mentions his grandfather drove the kiddy train at Auschwitz... Zoo, and points out there is more than one thing in that town (which was and is actually Oświęcim, Poland).
    • When he and Roger are at Normandy Beach, they discuss how the soldiers who fought on D-Day were essentially boys and very brave. Though Roger was speaking of the Americans, Klaus admired the bravery of the young Germans fighting off an American invasion.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Kinda.
  • Blood Knight: If there's an option involving killing, Klaus will take it.
  • Butt Monkey
  • Casanova Wannabe
  • The Chew Toy: Arguably the largest amongst the similarly luckless Smith family.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Spent most of the early seasons trying to woo Francine. Less prominent later on where he seems to have gained a respect for Stan and lost interest in Francine for the most part.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Occasionally implied.
  • Death Seeker: More or less. Pretty much all he can do as a goldfish is sit around and wait for death.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Would you believe that he was the one member of the family that everyone respected and wanted to impress in the show's early days?
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: A flash forward shows that he's regained a human body and will have at least one grandchild.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Klaus may well be a Nazi sympathizer but even he found it appalling that Francine's birth parents just casually abandoned her at an airport so they could go on first class.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: The family member who absorbs the most shit. Though it's shown that he's essential to the family dynamic as, without him, the family's vitriol will turn them against each other.
  • For the Evulz: Often does things simply to amuse him as sits around waiting for death.
  • Funny Animal
  • Funny Foreigner
  • Gratuitous German
  • The Hedonist: After body-jacking Stan, he goes takes a lot of drugs and sleeps with a lot of women.
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Dee Bradley Baker.
  • Hidden Depths: Klaus before being transformed into a fish was highly accomplished; he studied at Viardina European University and may have a doctorate in therapy. He owned a Ferrari and was an Olympic class skier. However, as none of that is relevant to being a goldfish it's frequently overlooked or ignored.
  • I Reject Your Reality: This, along with The Mad Hatter, and Cloudcuckoolander. His mental health has obviously deteriorated due to being stuck in the body of a fish, and he's fully aware of it. He has conversations with himself, and has narrated his life and those around him as a DVD commentary, among other instances of insanity.
  • Jerkass: Albeit toned down in later episodes, where he's usually too desperate for human interaction.
  • The Load: Even Francine is blunt about this:

Klaus: Oh, can I help?

Francine: Oh how can you help? You're a fish!



Avery Bullock

File:Deputy Director Bullock 5256.png


  Deputy Director of the CIA and Stan's superior (he's only Deputy-Deputy Director). Also a right-winger, but not to the same level of absurdity as Stan. Notably, despite being married, he has had sex with Hayley. Also has a thing for "plump Asian" chicks. Voiced by Patrick Stewart.


Reginald the Koala

A homeless man whose brain was placed in the body of a koala, and now works for the CIA. Voiced by Donald Fullilove & Erik Durbin.

Dick Reynolds

A recently divorced, miserable co-worker of Stan. Voiced by Stephen Root & David Koecher.


A ‘former homosexual’ co-worker of Stan’s whose ‘sodomy cleared right up’. Voiced by Mike Henry.

John Sanders

The fourth member of Stan's group. Voiced by Mike Barker.

Pearl Bailey High School

Principal Brian Lewis

The principal of Steve’s High School. Voiced by Kevin Michael Richardson.

  • Apathetic Teacher: Steve lampshades this by admitting to his face that he can't believe he's an educator. His job's mostly administrative. He outright says that he doesn't give a damn about the school.
  • Ascended Extra: Moved from being an incidental character to becoming the focus of the main plot of two consecutive episodes.
  • Ax Crazy: Utterly unhinged.
  • Badass Teacher: Discovered Steve had just punched an Indian exchange student (a twelve year old girl) in the face, then shattered a hot pot of coffee in Steve's face.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: A result of Flanderization as his eccentric tendencies gradually became more and more pronounced the more he appeared.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Whatever it entailed, the correct reaction is apparently Stunned Silence that someone could do that to a child. Though as said below, at least part of it inspired Different Strokes.
  • Depraved Bisexual: Was "prison married" for a few years, yet doesn't necessarily admit he's solely heterosexual and has professed fond memories of his time pushing cocaine and being given the pick of "girls, not women, girls" by his boss.
  • Fat Bastard: Crosses into this territory from time to time.
  • Fat Idiot
  • The Gump: His life was the basis for Different Strokes. Stan calls him out for how he left Dudley in the bicycle shop with the pedophile in The Bicycle Man. Brian mentions the real Dudley is messed up now.
  • Ink Suit Actor: Compare with Kevin Michael Richardson.
  • Moral Myopia: See Papa Wolf. Said revenge was a case of Disproportionate Retribution, especially since they were no better in the first place, and it was all because of a case of Misplaced Retribution on Steve's part. Steve even explained it was his friends' fault, and they still wanted Steve as well, making it a case of Misplaced Retribution on their part as well.
  • Odd Friendship:
    • Steve thinks he has this with Brian after he begins handling his paperwork. Even before then Steve had a tendency to refer to him by his first name. Then Brian sets him straight just before he plans on killing the two of them by explaining Steve was only his accountant. Though several episodes do imply that Steve is Brian's confidant.
    • Has a more traditional version of this with Stan.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Though he's been the focus of many an episode, his roles usually amount to this.
  • Papa Wolf: Told the PTA to turn a blind eye to his daughter and her friends' revenge on Steve and his friends.
  • Where Did We Go Wrong?: Is deeply ashamed of his daughter Janet, for "more reasons than you can imagine".

Schmuley "Snot" Lonstein


  Steve's best friend and frequent partner in crime. Voiced by Curtis Armstrong.


Barry Robinson


 Steve's mentally retarded friend. Voiced by Eddie Kaye Thomas. He's actually a criminal mastermind when off his meds, and his evil side is voiced by Craig Ferguson.


Toshi Yoshida


  The fourth of Steve's circle of friends. Voiced by Daisuke Suzuki.


  I will not be a cliche!

    • He has once complimented Steve when they dressed up in Star Trek attire, that he was not the one to play Sulu. That role was given to Barry, who ironically made 'me Chinese' eyes for this purpose.
  • Unexplained Accent: Taken Up to Eleven. His family doesn't speak Japanese yet he does.
  • The Unintelligible: He only speaks Japanese, but it's subtitled, so the audience can understand even though none of the other characters can. Inexplicably, his mother, father, and sister speak fluent English (and it's very much Depending on the Writer whether or not they speak Japanese).
    • The same episode his mother and sister are introduced brings up that he chooses not to speak English out of national pride.
    • In another episode, it is discovered that he seems to be 'haunted' by Minamoto a 12th century shogun, who he, ironically cannot understand and takes his phrases for something else like his friends do him.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Doesn't seem to like Steve very much (much of his dialogue is insulting remarks toward Steve, which of course Steve can't understand), but continues to hang out with him.
    • It's implied other kids aren't as nice to him.

Debbie Hyman

Steve’s on-again, off-again Goth girlfriend. Voiced by Lizzy Caplan.

Akiko Yoshida

Toshi’s sister, who often acts as a translator. Voiced by Grey DeLisle & Grace Park.

Smith Extended Family

Jack Smith

Stan’s father, a jewel thief and con-man. Voiced by Daran Norris.

Betty Smith

Stan’s somewhat needy mother. Voiced by Swoosie Kurtz.

  • Hot Mom
  • My Beloved Smother: Subverted. Betty lives for Stan's attention but she's actually looking for a boyfriend so she can have somebody who'll make her happy. The relationship crosses into disturbing territory at times, but it's Stan that has the unhealthy obsession, not Betty.
    • What do you do when your mom's unhappy? Jerry left her feeling crappy? Sing her a shanty nice and snappy! Wash her in the bathtub!

Bàba Ling

Francine’s adoptive father. Voiced by Tzi Ma.

Māma Ling

Francine’s adoptive mother. Voiced by Amy Hill.

Gwen Ling

Francine’s adopted sister.


Greg Corbin and Terry Bates


Homosexual life partners and co-anchors at W-ANG-TV, and neighbors to the Smiths. Francine was a surrogate mother for their daughter Liberty Belle, or "Libby." They're voiced by Seth MacFarlane and Mike Barker respectively.

  • Badass Gay: Both Terry and Greg at times, such as when Terry punches Stan in the face for kidnapping their daughter.
  • Beta Couple: Arguably the most prominent relationship on the show after Stan and Francine (and maybe Jeff and Hayley).
  • Camp Gay: Conspicuously so.
  • Gay Conservative: Greg's a Log Cabin Republican.
  • Happily Married: Although not technically married, one of the sweetest couples in animation history, with few arguments and a multitude of tender moments between them.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: Greg. In his words he's "straight thin, but [he's] gay fat." Greg is indeed noticeably pudgier compared to Terry.
  • Kent Brockman News: They tend to squabble and unload their dirty laundry while at work.
  • Parental Abandonment: Terry suffered this from his father Tank after Terry revealed to him that he's homosexual and gave him the choice of accepting that or leaving.
  • Papa Wolf: After Stan kidnapped their baby, the two managed to rouse up support from numerous gay truckers to stop Stan. After Stan returned Liberty (and the kids he stole from a lesbian couple) Stan expected to be forgiven because he learned a lesson. Terry decked him.
  • Put on a Bus: As a result of Mike Barker leaving the series, Terry left to follow 311 on tour.
  • Those Two Gays
  • With Friends Like These...: Greg and Terry have been known to spend a numerous amount of time with Stan and Francine, but a couple of instances have proven that the two hate the Smiths.

Linda Memari

An Iranian-American neighbour and friend of Francine. Voiced by Megyn Price.

  • Bi the Way or Lipstick Lesbian: Made out with Francine in "Not Particularly Desperate Housewives" as a way of saying a goodbye, despite being married to a man. Miraculously, this saves Francine from getting killed by the Lady Bugs, and Francine thanks Linda, thinking the kiss was a plan to save her. Linda, clearly disappointed, just goes along with that and claims she needed to get back home to her husbands that "she loves". Overall, it's suggest that Linda's not truly attracted to her husband and is a closeted lesbian, and it's revealed that her husband is aware of her preferences.
    • "Rough Trade", has her making her bust more noticeable by unbuttoning her shirt when she went to go borrow some sugar from Francine, which really was an attempt to hit on her. However, Linda quickly covers up when Stan comes to the door instead.
  • Demoted to Extra: Linda never really appeared in later seasons, along with her husband.
    • Justified, as she never had much of a personality beyond crushing on Francine.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Her: Cheek to Cheek: A Stripper’s Story casually reveals that she died during a year long Time Skip.


A Disney imaginer turned Mountain Man turned Henpecked Husband. Voiced by Matt Mc Kenna.

Sharri Rothberg

A Jewish-American princess and annoying wife of Buckle. Voiced by Lisa Edelstein.

Father Donovan

The local pastor. Voiced by Martin Mull.

Jeff Fischer

File:Jeff Fischer American Dad 2649.png


  Hayley's on again off again stoner boyfriend. They get married in the premiere of season 6. Voiced by Jeff Fischer.


Roger’s Personas

Dr Jordan Edilstein


Horse Renoir

Sidney Huffman

Roy Rogers Mc Freely

Dr Rafael Penguin

  • Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Dr. Penguin is quite possibly the least helpful therapist in the world.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: As Klaus (who actually has a degree in therapy) says, all of Doctor Penguin's therapeutic advice is absolutely terrible and should be ignored.

Jeannie Gold

  • Arch Enemy: To Ricky Spanish. They're also brother and sister.
  • Good Parents: Inexplicably so. Stan even lampshades that it's all but impossible that Jeannie Gold could have two fully grown kids.
  • Iron Lady: The only person in the world who can reign in Ricky Spanish.

Martin Sugar

Jenny Fromdabloc

Sgt Pepper

Ricky Spanish

Uncle Roger

  • Shapeshifter Default Form: Roger's most consistently used persona for any random occasion. Though whether he's Stan's uncle or Steve's varies.

Other Characters


An enigmatic detective character who’s often slow to react. Voiced by Forest Whitaker.

Santa Claus

  • Clothes Make the Superman: He has some innate power, but his suit is what truly makes him a threat.
  • Deconstruction: The whole point of his portrayal here. Santa gives toys to all children, even the bad ones. As he lampshades, he's the bad guy getting loads of money from toys.
  • Take Over the World: That or destroy it. Point is, his ultimate goal will drown the world in apocalyptic levels of blood and fire.

Roger's Species

  • Aerith and Bob: They've got names as varied from Zing to Roger and Foster.
  • Bizarre Alien Reproduction:
    • The males carry eggs and lactate milk and they only go through puberty at 1601.
    • They can remain conscious while being dissected but they need to be put back together quickly.
    • Their pancreas is a feral creature with a taste for peanut butter.
    • When really, really happy, they can make a rainbow out of urine.
    • When overworked, their bodies will bud off a homunculus to help ease the workload.
  • City with No Name: All we know about their homeworld is that it's a snowy planet with its home star being visible from Earth. What it (and its star) is called is unknown as Roger just calls it his planet.
  • Ditto Aliens: Averted for most but the Elite Guard are all identical to Roger hinting that he may once have been one of them.
  • Everyone Has Standards: When they realize the extent of Emperor Zing's manipulations, they join the slaves in overthrowing his regime.
  • Galactic Conqueror: They fly around enslaving people to staff their giant starships.
  • Glass Cannon: For all their technological might, they're very easy to overpower.
  • The Greys: Roger was the one who crashed in Roswell in 1947.
  • Higher-Tech Species: Not only have they perfected FTL travel, anti-gravs, telepathy and teleportation, they have the technology to remove faces and regrow whole limbs.
  • No Name Given: What they're called is unknown.
  • Planet of Hats: They're all compulsive shoppers.
  • The Power of Hate: They need to let their bitchiness out, lest it turn to bile and poison them.
  • Superior Species: They treat aliens as slaves.

Emperor Zing

  • Bigger Bad: It's not a huge leap to think that he made Roger into a crash test dummy as revenge for the heartbreak.
  • Galactic Conqueror: Hinted at.
  • It's All About Me: After Roger broke his heart, Zing convinced his species there was no love in the universe and abducted people from across the galaxy, mutilating them if they challenged this belief.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Jeff rallies his flagship to turn on him leaving him defenceless in the midst of a large scale riot.
  • Staff of Authority