This article contains spoilers for the “Life of Brian” episode of Family Guy.
During the “Life of Brian” episode of Family Guy, a new character was introduced named Vinny the Dog. Of course, the big controversy is that Vinny the Dog isn’t just a new additional character for the show, but rather he’s a replacement for Brian Griffin, who was killed off on the episode.
Family Guy fans were outraged by the death of the beloved family dog, and there is considerable evidence to suggest that Brian Griffin might return. However, if Brian does eventually return, it doesn’t look like it will be soon.
According to a Deadline report, Tony Sirico signed a six episode deal to voice Vinny the Dog. His deal also reportedly had an option to do more episodes or even become a regular on the show. There are a couple ways to interpret Sirico's six episode deal. The most obvious answer is that Brian's death is just temporary, and the plan is to bring him back after six episodes.
However, the indication that there is a possibility that Sirico could sign on for more episodes seems to hint that maybe a final decision on whether Brian Griffin will return hasn’t been made yet. Maybe, Seth MacFarlane is waiting to judge fan reaction before deciding if Vinny stays or goes.