How is it that a show who’s pilot was filmed on a camcorder for under $100 has turned into the country’s longest running live action comedy series? To answer that question, we need to take a deep dive into the the minds of the struggling actors who brought our favorite bar owners to life.
Often referred to as “Seinfeld on crack”, Always Sunny has moved on from it’s humble beginnings to one of the tentpole programs on FX over the last few years. It recently wrapped season 14 and continues to be snubbed by awards pundits year over year. In fact, the season 9 episode ‘The Gang tries desperately to win an award’ plays with that notion.
Over the years, they have done a little bit of everything. We’ve seen moneymaking schemes, musicals, and movie remakes. We’ve gotten body transformations, animation, game show meltdowns and everything in between. Let’s take a closer look at the best (and worst) of the gang.
Best Mac Moment: Mac Finds his Pride (S13E10) — Mac’s sexuality was teased over the course of the entire series with little foreshadowing moments here and there, but they finally put it to rest in the season 13 finaly. The moment Mac finally comes out to his incarcerated father was a shocker but little did we know what was to immediately follow. Five minutes of shirtless Mac dancing beautifully with rain falling on the stage. The stark change in tone compared to the rest of the show is what made this stand out to me. The stunned audience and standing ovation was offbrand for the series but amazing in the moment.
Best Dennis Moment: The Gang Buys a Boat (S6E3) — Dennis decides to share with Mac the true reason why one would ever buy a boat. He explains that it is much easier to woo women due to the “implication” of danger if she refuses. Annoyed that Mac doesnt seem to get it, Dennis continues to try and rationalize his plan to no avail. Honorable mentions to the golden god and 5-star man meltdowns but this was our first true glimpse in to the messed up mind of Dennis Reynolds.
Best Dee Moment: The Gang Broke Dee (S9E1) — After years of being the gang punching bag, dee finally seems to have given up all hope and decency. It is ironic that this is exactly what she needed for her standup to be successful. Her self depricating sets are tearing through the philly comedy scene to the point she gets set up with an agent and manager. The episode climaxes with a guest spot on the Tonight show and private jet cheauffer. In classic IASIP fashion, the whole thing was a prank set up by the rest of the gang just to piss her off.
Best Frank Moment: Mac and Dennis buy a Timeshare (S9E4) — The reason Frank was such a great addition to the show is his wildcard factor. His endless supply of cash allows him to get the gang involved in all sorts of predicaments. In this case, however, we do not get an explanation of how Frank gets stuck in this coil wearing only his underwear. While the rest of the gang is caught up trying to navigate their new pyramid scheme jobs, all he wants is to get out.
Best Charlie Moment: Charlie’s Home Alone (S13E8) — This was a toss up with Charlie Work, The Nightman Cometh, and Pepe Silvia. Despite being the dumbest character on the show and borderline illiterate, Charlie has some of the best moments on the show and is by far my favorite character. After a beat for beat recreation of when Kevin realizes his family is gone in Home Alone, Charlie must prepare his superstitions for the Eagles Super Bowl. After getting beaten to shit by his own traps, he gets a visit from the ghost of Jason Kelce who encourages him to get the game on just as the Eagles win.
Best Ensemble Episode: The Gang beats Boggs (S10E1) — The season 10 opener brought us some classic lines and some good ole fashioned beer chugging. Frank argues with the flight attendant about whether he is a Dr and/or Pilot and Dee constantly confuses Wade Boggs with Boss Hogg from the Dukes of Hazzard. Mac is in classic form taking his commissioner job too seriously and Dennis takes a stab joining the air sex society, as Frank calls it. Charlie, who ends up winning the contest gives us two important quotes that I actually have pinned on my wall for inspiration:
“Wade Boggs didn’t drink 70 beers to win some stupid contest, he did it because he was thirsty.”
“That’s Baseball baby!”
Best Recurring Character: The Waiter — Every time he sees the gang, you see his face drop in disappointment. What did he ever do to deserve the shit he gets? Whether at the restaurant, Super Bowl Suite, or even in his own house the gang cannot seem to leave him alone. We also must give a runners up nod to the Lawyer for all the great work he’s done in ruining the gangs fiscal exploits.
These are just a few of the best moments and hopefully we have many more coming as FX has given the creative team free reign to do seasons 15 and 16. Although each of the lead characters have gone off to do solo projects in the last few years, they are seeming to have as much fun as ever with Always Sunny so here’s to another round in Fall 2020.
Also, as a few of you may know, Mr Juice is not a fan of the show. So let’s all bug him with gifs until he agrees to binge it.
Until next time…