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Stanford Leonard Smith is the main protagonist of the TV show American Dad!. Though he is the protagonist, he commits many villainous deeds, often thinking of himself first.
Stanford Leonard Smith was born on November 22, 1958 to Betty Smith and Jack Smith.
His father had left him when he was a child, which is most likely why he looks up to and is a lackey of Director Avery Bullock.
He attended John DeLorean High School in the early 70s and was a very unpopular student, and was often bullied and humiliated by the popular students.
He met his future wife, Francine Dawson (later Smith), when she was hitch-hiking and Stan gave her a ride. He had run over a raccoon accidentally and put it out of its misery, which Francine saw as the kindest act she had ever seen. They got married the same year.
Stan Smith has worked for the Central Intelligence Agency since the 80s, as a field agent and weapons expert, and later on in the series, the Deputy-Deputy Director, placing him on the third tier of importance in the C.I.A. under Deputy-Director Bullock. As at the start of Season 2, his official job title is apparently "Deputy Deputy Director", although the official announcement of his promotion wasn't actually seen in any episode. In this role, his work has included the interrogation of possible terrorists. Stan is always on alert for terrorist activity, at work, and in his home life.
Stan is a man with very conservative, patriotic, and xenophobic views.
Although he is a loving father and husband, he is often the one to cause issues/tension with the family due to his views and actions. This is most prominent with his daughter Hayley, as his views often put him at odds with her, which is the catalyst to many episodes of the show.
Stan can also be extremely selfish towards his family, such as the episode where Bullock develops a relationship with Hayley, which Stan was fine with despite their age difference because he wanted a promotion. In the same episode, Hayley leaves Bullock for Jeff and Stan willingly attempts to kill Jeff after Bullock told him to.
Furthermore, Stan is a narcissist with incredible insecurity, which is seen many times. A perfect example is when he found out Francine had been engaged to another man before him and went out of his way to find out whether or not Francine truly loved him or if she'd just settled with him by means of faking his death (which backfired as he and Roger were left stranded for months). Another example was when he used CIA surveillance equipment to eavesdrop on his neighbors and was so hurt and offended by their private opinions and conversations about him that he had them all forcibly relocated, which included his family when they tried to stop him. He even used Roger's ability to enter dreams to find out how Francine thinks of him and was mortified to see Francine's private thoughts showing him as a wailing baby, a clown, an ogre, and other unflattering examples.
Stan is also a control freak and was psychoanalyzed to be so afraid of change that for twenty year, he took Francine to a hypnotist (lying to her that he was a marriage counselor) in order to hypnotize Francine to make her forget problems, feelings, thoughts, or otherwise that Stan didn't want to deal with or because it affected his life. He used Hayley's training as a sleeper agent to force her to marry a man of his approval (not realizing this man was gay and only agreeing to the marriage so his own father wouldn't disinherit him), only for the sleeper agent programming to cause Hayley to turn against Stan and kill him, although it was temporary and Stan didn't learn his lesson as he was just glad he got away with it. Stan is very untrusting of Hayley due to her left wings views at odds with his extremist right wing beliefs, and he once admitted her middle name is Dreamsmasher due to her birth forcing him to give up his search for Oliver North's gold.
He's gone out of his way to force his son Steve to meet his expectations, such as becoming an actual bully to force Steven to stand up for himself (which is hypocritical as Stan never stood up to his own bully and Steven found this bully and paid him to beat Stan into submission), tried to get Steve to hang out with cooler kids than his own friends Snot, Toshi, and Barry, and has at multiple times forced Steve into activities he didn't want to do. Part of his reasons for being so hard on Steve is he wants him to be popular (reacting very negatively one time when Steve told Stan he didn't care about being popular) because Stan himself wasn't popular in his adolescence and it can be assumed he wants Steve's youth to turn out better than his own did.
Stan is also antagonistic and unfair to Roger and Klaus. Early on in the series, Stan forbade Roger from leaving the house at all and was unsympathetic to Roger's cabin fever and boredom, until Roger started using his disguises/personas to be able to get out and have a social life. However, the CIA was hunting Roger, and Stan only sheltered him to protect him and his family.
Stan is horrible to Klaus, ignoring him, being condescending to him, and constantly breaking his promises to give Klaus a human body or improve his living situation. He is the reason why Klaus was a fish in the first place; Klaus was an Olympic skier and Stan transferred his brain into a fish just so Germany wouldn't get the gold medal at the 1986 Winter Olympics. His negligence caused Klaus' human body to decompose. He even once tried to swallow Klaus by drinking his fishbowl.
- Trapping the whole neighborhood in a prison camp (his backyard)
- His ego causes him to believe he has the best sense of judgment and has to make all the vital decisions in a dire situation when his incompetence actually makes things much worse. In one instance, his actions caused his family to be trapped during a hurricane, which flooded their neighborhood, made the house flip over, got a shark stuck in their already flooding house, made things even worse by bringing a bear to kill the shark only for the bear to attack the family along with the shark, accidentally electrocuted Roger, and inadvertently harpooned Francine when he was aiming for the bear.
- Running a sweatshop with undocumented Mexicans so he could earn money after criticizing Hayley for dating one prior, making Stan a hypocrite
- Bullying his own son as a demented way of teaching him self-reliance
- Ruining every aspect of his atheist friend Brett's life so he could be closer to God (i.e., blowing up his house, destroying his family, etc)
- When he destroyed Brett's family, he had C.I.A. scientists use an experimental ray to make Brett's wife to a lesbian, therefore forcefully converting her sexuality (unknowingly) against her will.
- Framing Francine for murdering her friend (Bullock was the actual culprit) and putting her in a really dark place, just so Francine wouldn't say "I told you so"
- Admitted that his fellow colleagues and him have distributed crack to inner-cities, and in the same episode became addicted to crack and refused to get professional help until he hit rock bottom and ended up temporarily stranded in Colombia. Beforehand, he had pawned many things in his house to pay for more crack and even ended up taking his neighbors Greg and Terry hostage for a plane to get to Colombia in the first place. His addiction also ruins Steve's new relationship with his girlfriend Jeanine by attempting to prostitute himself to her father for more drug money.
- Infiltrated a cannabis factory to steal the "ever-lasting edible" (which supposedly granted a cannabis user an everlasting high), under the pretense of "doing whatever it takes to the fight the War on Drugs", even though cannabis is legal in Virginia (Note: Only in American Dad continuity; In real life, cannabis is currently illegal in the state of Virginia), and his boss Avery Bullock (who has a notorious history of drug abuse) simply wanted the edible all to himself, and made little effort to hide it. Stan and his fellow agents abuse the fact that cannabis is illegal on a federal level to have his agents raid legal cannabis shipments to steal and acquire a "golden blunt rap" to gain entry to the factory where the edible was created.
- Abusing or mistreating Klaus for trivial or no absolute reason whatsoever. This is even worse, considering Stan and his C.I.A. co-workers are responsible for putting Klaus in the body of a goldfish to cheat Germany out of an Olympic gold metal and confining Klaus to a miserable life.
- Granted, Klaus acted like a pervert and inappropriately hit on Stan's wife Francine a lot in the past, but that is in part to Klaus' loneliness for female companionship, and only began to stop because Stan ended up saving Klaus' life by putting him in a new fish body after having his new human body fatally wounded. But Stan has still continued to abuse Klaus, along with his family.
- When a utopian society was formed upon the destruction of Roger's golden turd and his body, Stan and his family grew bored with their new utopia, even though world peace was finally achieved, and after learning that they could restore Roger's body as well as the more chaotic world, the Smiths jumped at the chance, as they viewed their old lives as more interesting, even though it would cause all the good that came from it to revert back to a much worse time. After succeeding ,the Smiths succumb to the recreated golden turd's corruption inducement, and Stan pretends to be immune and plans to keep the turd to himself, which indirectly results in his entire family killing each other over it, including Stan himself. Roger, however, is able to reset the timeline by using the turd to talk to his past self, effectively erasing Stan's heinous actions, but the world is still left with conflict, as now the utopian society wasn't even able to come into being in the new timeline, which Stan is partially and unknowingly responsible for, as Roger wouldn't have had to change the timeline if Stan and his family allowed Roger's body to stay destroyed since it would've enabled a new age of peace and harmony.
- Stan's voice is based off of 50s radio announcers.
- Seth MacFarlane has said doing Stan's voice is exhausting, and this was poked at in an episode where Roger dressed up as Stan but had trouble getting his voice right and settled for making him sound like Sean Connery. The joke here is that Roger is also voiced by Seth.
Guest Star Characters