Pre-mass-media and seemingly pre-literacy, the townspeople are so ignorant that Gilbert Gottfried is able to pass himself off as Abraham Lincoln. On the night he plans to flee for San Francisco, Albert befriends a tomboy beauty named Anna (Charlize Theron) who convinces him to stick around for a week. Since she's secretly married to a murderous outlaw (Liam Neeson), the pair are free to do something truly unusual for any Hollywood genre: pal around as platonic friends. (At least for a while.)
It's hard to pin down how MacFarlane conceives of himself. "‘I'm not the hero," Albert insists. "I'm the guy in the crowd making fun of the hero's shirt." But MacFarlane can't resist trying do to both, as if, deep inside of himself, he wants to be a real boy after all -- an actor who might conceivably one day be cast in a movie without a fart joke.