The Gang Gets Rated: The Top 5 Episodes of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia
Described as “Seinfeld on crack”, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia is a show about the worst people on the face of the Earth. But while Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer were likable enough that audience’s could relate to them, Mac, Dennis, Charlie, Sweet Dee, and Frank are the kind of people that would dump a hooker’s body outside a hotel room or take girls out on a boat so they’re defenseless. We aren’t meant to sympathize with them; we’re meant to hopefully be entertained enough that we come back week to week despite the self-loathing that accompanies watching a show like this. Now that the show is about to enter its eighth season, I thought it would be a good time to look back at five of the best episodes the show has to offer.
Honorable Mentions: “The Gang Buys A Boat”, “Charlie Goes America All Over Everybody’s Ass”, “The Gang Goes to the Jersey Shore”
After Dennis accumulates over $1,000 worth of parking fines he marches into court and demands to tell his side of the story. He puts the blame on the Philadelphia Phillies winning the World Series. We flash back to a year ago and see the Gang making Riot Punch and getting pumped for Game 5, which they have somehow acquired tickets to. When the gang gets separated on the way to the game and can’t find their tickets, they end up poisoned and injured as they attempt to find a way in. The episode alternates between the gang telling their story in court and the story itself, and each is equally hilarious.
4. The Gang Gets Extreme: Home Makeover Edition
The gang realizes in order for good things to happen to them they must do good things to others. When they attempt to emulate Extreme Makover: Home Edition and renovate a Mexican families’ home, things go horribly wrong. To start the renovation, they break into the families home at night and terrify them. While Frank, Dennis, and Charlie destroy the house, Dee and Mac try to educate the family on all things Americana. Things get drastically worse throughout the episode, far exceeding cringe-worthy levels, but in the end things work out for the unlucky family, and the gang gets their just deserts. That’s always a good thing.
3. The Gang Solves The Gas Crisis
When the gang has to solve a gas crisis, their master plan is to get a bank loan to pay for multiple barrels of gas that they will store and eventually sell. While the plan is being formed, the gang gets into an argument about what roles they assume. Mac says he is the brains, Dennis is the looks, and Charlie is the wildcard. Charlie eagerly assumes the role and tries to live up to it at every chance. The episode is packed full of laughs, but its spot on the list is due in no small part to the ending, which is hands down the funniest moment of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia. Heck, it’s one of the hardest times I’ve laughed at anything on TV, period.
2. Chardee MacDennis: The Game of Games
This bottle episode from the most recent season had the Gang revisiting a favorite game of their own devising – Chardee MacDennis. Chardee MacDennis resembles Calvinball with its unnecessarily complex gameplay which can be altered to favor the creator. Losing throughout the game is punished by drinking, so players don’t even remember the answers to questions they wrote. Frank, who is playing the game for the first time, becomes suspicious of the inner workings when Dennis and Sweet Dee seem unstoppable.
The game’s bizarreness intensifies as time goes on, eventually leading to this:
“Chardee MacDennis” is a nice addition to the mythology of the show and consistently ups the ante humor-wise for twenty-two minutes. It’s nice to know that one of the best episodes of a show can come so late in its run.
If you are interested in playing Chardee MacDennis, then this might be of help.
1. The Nightman Cometh
Seinfeld has “The Contest”, The Simpsons has “Marge Vs. The Monorail”, and It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia has “The Nightman Cometh”. The fourth season finale is the zenith of the show that won’t be matched until Charlie writes another musical. What makes “The Nightman Cometh” so great is even though Charlie’s play is perverted and nonsensical, from a musical standpoint it is surprisingly competent. The final number “Dayman” is insanely catchy and Charlie’s proposal to the Waitress through song is oddly touching. So even though Charlie doesn’t get what he wants in the end, he’ll live to fight another day. And hopefully he’ll get around to writing “The Dayman Cometh”.
The Sunny Gang even took “The Nightman Cometh” out on tour. You can find the entire thing on YouTube, but here’s “Dayman”.
So now you know my picks for the top 5 episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Could an episode from this season end up claiming a spot on this list? We’ll find out when It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia returns Thursday October 11th @ 10pm.