In Five Reasons, TV.com takes an early look at upcoming episodes of shows and scoops what's good and bad about the program we just watched. We're not telling you to watch it or telling you to avoid it--we're just offering up our two cents as a helpful guide.
"Sharing...it's a rule now...PTHTHBTBTHTHTHH!!"--Charlie, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
FX's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is television's lovely little hole-in-the-wall--that undiscovered gem that locals steer tourists away from in hopes that it doesn't get too popular because it's so damn good. However, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia's secret is getting out fast, and more people are starting to pay attention to this hilarious comedy.
The premise is simple--four selfish, ignorant, and despicable friends run a bar in Philadelphia. That's about it. Like Seinfeld, the "show about nothing," the enjoyment from It's Always Sunny comes from the characters' eccentricities, ethical deficiencies, and relationships with one another.
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia's fourth season kicks off tonight with back-to-back episodes, but is it worth your time? Five reasons to and not to watch It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia...now!
Five reasons you should watch It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
1. It's baked at home with love
Rob McElhenney, Charlie Day, and Glenn Howerton write, star, and edit the show, and thankfully FX keeps their leashes pretty loose. With almost total creative control, the guys' vision comes across without any filters--hence storylines about cannibalism, hunting the homeless, and tea-bagging (and that's just the first episode of season four). Plus FX lets them curse a bit.
2. Kaitlin Olson's drunk Sweet Dee
As the lone female star of the show, Olson is basically surrounded by a bunch of dudes who make fart jokes. But she holds her own, and when her character Dee gets her drink on, it's comedy gold. Need proof? Check out this clip.
3. Fred Savage
Fred Savage--yes, Kevin from The Wonder Years--directs several episodes of the series. That is all.
4. Charlie, Mac, Dennis
The three main characters of Dennis, Mac, and Charlie are so despicable and likeable at the same time, viewers can't get enough of them. Fan favorite Charlie is particularly hilarious as the dim-witted runt of the litter.
5. Danny DeVito
How did one of the raunchiest shows on television get even raunchier? By adding all four-feet-eleven-inches (five feet even, if you want to be generous) of the hellacious DeVito. As part-owner of the bar, legal father of Dennis and Dee, and (possibly) biological father of Charlie, DeVito's Frank muscles his way around the gang and concocts some of the more harebrained ideas.
Five reasons you shouldn't watch It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
1. It can be a little too much for some
No subject is too taboo for It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Case in point--they've done shows about race relations, child molesters, dumpster babies, Nazis, crack, male escorts, and mental retardation. It could shock the monocle right out of your eye!
2. May be on the decline
The first three seasons of the show were incredible--highly recommended that you check them out on DVD. However, season four starts a bit sluggish. Thankfully, sluggish for It's Always Sunny is still better than almost every other comedy out there.
3. Humor may be going Greek
It's Always Sunny has always been funny because of its envelope-pushing humor--it's sick, disgusting, and revolting, yet side-splitting at the same time. But when the humor veers towards frat-boy comedy, as it does in bits of the first episode, that's when we ask, "What happened?"
4. Secondary characters
Aside from Mary Elizabeth Eillis as "The Waitress" (factoid: who happens to be Charlie's wife in real life), supporting characters take a backseat to the lead characters...in fact, they aren't even riding in the same car. Whereas Seinfeld had Jerry's parents, Newman, and J. Peterman, It's Always Sunny's second line of troops just aren't very memorable.
5. Can it last?
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia has been soooooo good, that it's impossible to imagine it keeping up the same pace. And with the guys' workloads off the charts (they're also working on Fox's Boldly Going Nowhere), the show will likely see itself fall more into the hands of the new writing staff. Let's hope they're half as talented as Day, McElhenney, and Howerton.
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia premieres season four tonight on FX at 10 p.m. Check it out and come back here with comments on what you thought! TV.com also has full episodes of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia...catch up on past seasons!