The Best Lines From It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia S13E08: “Charlie’s Home Alone”

After a raucous, delightful and even experimental string of four or five episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, the show decided to get a little weirder than we’re probably used to with the eighth episode of this season. “Charlie’s Home Alone” is, for all intents and purposes, an experimental episode of IASIP. It mostly features just Charlie, it’s mostly set in the bar, and it goes to some bizarre places and extreme lengths to depict the events of what he went through during last year’s Super Bowl, when the Philadelphia Eagles finally won football’s top prize. What’s more, it’s only half the story, as it ends on a cliffhanger, promising to show us what Dee, Mac, Frank and some of the show’s fringe characters were up to at the same time, as early in the episode they depart on a party bus, bound for the Super Bowl, thinking Charlie is with them donning the Green Suit (the description suggests that Cricket might be the one that stole Charlie’s suit, leading to him being left behind).

Once they do, and Charlie realizes he’s been left behind (actually, he believes he’s wished his friends out of existence), the first act plays out exactly like the first act of Home Alone, from the Christmas music right down to the beats of certain scenes from that film as well as lines of dialog. This is in no way a Christmas episode of IASIP, which makes it all the more hilarious that they use the exact songs from that movie, as does the fact that Charlie never once acknowledge what he’s spoofing. After rifling through everyone’s stuff and taking his turn on Mac’s dildo bike, Charlie sets up shop at the bar, waiting for the game to begin. But when a couple of locals try to get into Paddy’s, Charlie assumes they’re intruders and begins setting up a bunch of traps.

The episode takes a drastic left turn when he sets off one of his own traps, namely a bear trap. The loss of blood, the brutal cauterizing scene and everything that follows take this from Home Alone to something more along the lines of 127 Hours or The Revenant, as Charlie fights to fulfill his usual superstitions, thinking that if he doesn’t, the Eagles will lose the Big Game. He drops a green paint bucket on his head, because he has to wear green. He eats a rat, because he has to eat brown. He drinks his own pee (of course) because he has to drink yellow. And when hallucinations of Eagles players inform him how he could (easily) get out of the bear trap and he turns on the TV to see Tom Brady in possession with time on the clock, they tell him he has to get back in it as it’s part of his superstitions now.

That’s about where the episode ends, following an extended, brutal sequence of torture porn. We, in reality, know that the Eagles go on to win the Super Bowl, but the show decides to save that fact for next week and the other side of the story. Which is, honestly, a little frustrating for a show like, no less an episode like this, which is already a tad unusual. Don’t get me wrong, despite the fact that it’s an incomplete episode and that it lands on certain uncomfortable extremes with how it treats Charlie, it’s still full of laughs and has some good highs. But it also doesn’t feel like what I would have wanted out of an episode like this.

It’s funny, because it kind of reminded me a little of the seminal “Charlie Work”, the seminal season 10 episode rightfully lauded as one of the best of the series, in large part for its experimental, precognisant parody of Birdman and other movies with long tracking shots. But that episode was written by Charlie Day, Rob McElheney and Glenn Howerton. This one was written by first timers Adam Weinstock and Andy Jones, likely part of the show’s effort to diversify and rejuvenate its writer’s room as those three co-creators took a step back, thanks to their increasingly busy schedules and, notably, Glenn Howerton’s teased semi-absence from the show. Howerton in particular is completely absent from this episode, as it takes place during a time where his character would have been away from Philadelphia and The Gang. I don’t want to blame it specifically on those two guys, because the makeup of the show has been completely different and other combinations of new writers have paid dividends this season, but it does feel like the failures of this episode could probably be pointed to a fundamental misunderstanding of what makes experimental episodes like “Charlie Work” so special. And what makes them special is that while they’re trying something crazy, something new, they still feel like the core of the same show. Charlie Day does his best to make that work here, and I don’t exactly mean to say that the stuff his character is doing isn’t stuff we’d think he’d do, but something feels off about it, or missing, and it’s more glaring when there’s only one character to carry the plot and the comedy.

“Charlie’s Home Alone” isn’t a terrible episode. It’s an incomplete episode, and unfortunately it’s probably the worst of this thirteenth season, so it gets 6.5 sticky bibles out of 10.


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The Best Lines from “Charlie’s Home Alone:”

  • Goddammit Count: unless I missed some during Charlie’s wailing, I didn’t hear any this week.
  • Dee: “First of all, how is ‘salmonella’ the only word you spelled right?”
  • Charlie: “I made my friends disappear. I made my friends disappear!”
  • Guy: “Well, which one is it? Is it closed for salmonella or is it closed for Super Bowl?”
  • Charlie after doing the aftershave bit from Home Alone: “I don’t know why I’m screaming, this doesn’t hurt at all?”
  • Charlie after getting a nail in the shoulder from his own trap: “Why would anybody do that to anybody?”
  • “You bought the trap, Charlie. I only know about the release lever because you know about the release lever. You get that, right?”
  • “Every single thing a fan does, at home or at the game, has a direct impact on the game.”
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The Best Lines From The Good Place S03E05: “Jeremy Bearimy”

Probably the best thing about this week’s premise-altering episode of The Good Place (other than Chidi’s newly-revealed abs) has to be the fact that, prior to blowing up the plot for the umpteenth time, the show seems to make an earnest attempt to do the thing that most other sitcoms would do to slow things down. At the end of last week’s episode, our study group catches Michael and Janet opening the portal to the afterlife. Eventually, Michael is forced to reveal all to the group, as he’s done many a time in the past, but first comes an ill-fated lie, rebranding himself as Special Agent Rick Justice of the FBI’s paranormal activity squad, tasked which chasing demons ghouls and attempting to convince the four that they’re somehow part of it.

Eleanor et al instantly see through it. On any other show, they might not have. But on The Good Place, it’s totally in line with their characters to deny it, even though, a moment later, Michael is forced to give them the truth and they instantly believe it. A big fat important part about Michael’s character is that he’s bad at lying. Even the best, most finely-tuned lie, like the original Neighourhood, is going to get turned on its head, because no matter how hard he tries, it’s never convincing enough. Making up a terrible, amazing alias on the spot isn’t going to trick these four, whether they remember his previous lies or not. And yet, when he explains the truth – that they’ve died and spent hundreds of years in hell, and that the afterline’s timeline looks like the English cursive representation of the name “Jeremy Bearimy”, which also happens to be this week’s episode title – there is no objection.

This is a perfect encapsulation of The Good Place’s earnestness, and why the format works so well. The characters are consistent and have incredible chemistry with one another, no matter what crazy situation the writers inevitably place them in. What really puts it over the top, however, is the quality of the writing and what the writers choose to do with those situations, and those finely tuned characters. It’s kind of shocking how such a critical episode chooses not to be plot-driven, but instead make a point about the show’s philosophical and ethical questions. Especially since it chooses to do so without reverting back to the often-used contrivance of the show of having Chidi serve as the group’s professor.

Instead, faced with a life meaningless existence, expecting thereafter an eternity of suffering, the group is left to their own devices, as everyone chooses to take a completely different path. Michael and Janet are writing a manifesto of their experience (and based on how much the episode focuses on this you have to imagine something will come of it, like maybe the manifesto getting leaked to the public and breaking the entire system). Tahani decides to give away all of her money while Jason, in her tow, aims her towards giving it to the people he perceives might need it the most. Eleanor says she’s going to play by her own rules, as she did before her original death, but finds that she’s suddenly bound by the rules of society she was previously keen on ignoring. And Chidi, faced with irrefutable yet irreconcilable proof that his life is a lie and his lifelong struggle with indecisiveness was ultimately pointless, is merely broken. He strips down, spends hundreds of dollars on groceries, makes a disgusting chili and has an episode in front of his classroom.

And yet, while he’s having his breakdown, he winds up summing up exactly what everyone in the group is doing. Tahani’s actions are proof of virtue ethics, as she chooses to be a good person regardless of the consequences as she donates anonymously (but not the way another Ted Danson character did on Curb Your Enthusiasm). Jason chooses consequentialism, steering her virtue towards those who need it the most. Eleanor sticks with deontology, a.k.a. the actions themselves and the rules of society. Chidi simply disregards all of these options and opts to go with nihilism, since nothing matters and actions are inconsequential.

The truth winds up being somewhere in the middle, as Eleanor winds up rallying the group with a plan to do good and help people because trying is better than not trying. However, before they can get started on their new path, Larry Hemsworth shows up, unaware of what’s transpired. I kind of hope they never address his appearance and everyone just assumes Tahani dumped poor Larry offscreen.

All of this makes “Jeremy Bearimy” one of the best episodes of The Good Place and of TV this year, good enough for 9.5 wings and atria out of 10.


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The Best Lines from The Good Place S03E05:

  • Tahani Namedrops: James Cameron, “The Bodyguard’s” Kevin Costner.
  • Michael Aliases: Special Agent Rick Justice, FBI, and for Janet, Lisa “double nickname” Fuquois, AKA “Frenchie”, AKA “Janet”.
  • Seriously though, damn Chidi. And I’m not talking about his shirt that reads “Who What Where When Wine”.
  • Eleanor winds up at a bar called “Drinking Nemo.”
  • Tahani: “What’s The Good Place and, what are afterlife points and, who has the most and is it me?
  • Michael: “But you’re forgetting one crucial piece of information… right?”
  • Michael: “I could kill them all right now, it would be easy. Their bodies are very poorly made. They’re mostly goo and juice. You just take the juice out and then they’re dead.”
  • Janet/Michael: “So sorry for eternally dooming you.” “That’s our bad.”
  • Michael explaining the dot above the I to Chidi: “How do I explain this concisely… this is Tuesdays. And also July. And sometimes it’s never.”
  • Tahani: “I need you to act as my bodyguard, like my friend Kevin Costner in that movie where he was a bodyguard, ‘The Bodyguard’.”
  • Jason: “In Jacksonville, I got a flu virus named after me because I kissed a bat on a dare.”
  • Drug Dealer to Chidi: “I was just trying to sell you some drugs and you made it weird.”
  • Eleanor: “Rule number two, no more Spider-Man movies. There are way too many Spider-Man movies, so many dorky little twerpy Spider-Men.”
  • Eleanor: “In America everybody does whatever they want, society did break down, it’s terrible and it’s great. You only look out for number one, scream at whoever disagrees with you, there are no bees because they all died, and if you need surgery you just beg for money on the internet.”
  • Tahani: “Hello madam, are you poor?”
  • Jason: “I could have gone to a real doctor instead of pretending I was a big dog so I could go to the vet.”
  • Banker: “We’re technically supposed to shut down the bank if anyone from Florida even walks in.”
  • Jason: “If it’s any easier you can just put it on a GameStop gift card.”
  • Man/Eleanor: “Are you alright?” “No, YOU shut up.”
  • Chidi: “Imma eat all this chili, and/or die trying.”
  • Chidi: “And now I’m gonna eat my marshmallow candi chili in silence and you all can jump up into your own butts.”
  • Michael: “I know it’s Thursday but I’d really like to visit a LensCrafters.”

 

The Best Lines from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia S13E07: “The Gang Does a Clip Show”

One of the best things about It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia is how much they can create out of so little. This has never been a high budget show. It’s seldom been a show that ventures outside of the handful of its established sets. And yet, those episodes, even the ones confined specifically within the walls of Paddy’s Pub, often wind up ranking among the show’s best.

The show has been on a helluva run in this thirteenth season, and a lot of that has to with this aforementioned efficacy. The last three episodes in particular have been incredible, starting with The Gang tackling the #MeToo movement, all within the confines of a hotel conference room, followed by an episode of classic shenanigans that ends as absurdly and as dark as we’ve ever seen on this show, and culminating with last week’s politics-infused bottle episode. The streak continued this week with “The Gang Does a Clip Episode”, another bottle episode, this time featuring clips from the show’s past before things get weird and meta and inspired by Inception. Like last week, outside of said clips and flashbacks, the action largely takes place within the confines of the bar. Hell, all five characters barely move from their seats, and the episode even comes in a little shorter than usual. And yet, remarkably, the show and the episode’s writers (Dannah Phirman and Danielle Schneider, the duo who also wrote the Wade Boggs reboot episode earlier this season) still find ways to cram it full of great jokes, unexpected twists and things we’ve never seen from the show before.

“That’s what you do when you start getting old. You start reliving the glory days because you can’t think of anything new to do.”

Those words are uttered by Dennis at some point in the episode, which features the gang sitting around reliving their memories while they wait for their phones to update to the newest version of the software, so they can go back to ignoring each other. It’s obviously meant as a self-referential dig, as IASIP is archaic as far as modern shows – especially sitcoms – are concerned. But nothing could be further from the truth about this episode, since it finds something new, something unique to do with a sitcom format that’s been around for ages.

The meta clip show has been done in and of itself. Community did it a couple of times and shows like How I Met Your Mother and New Girl even baked it into their formulas, but I don’t think I can remember a show that took actual clips from its past and changed them in order to do an Inception-style “what reality is this” bit. The way they peppered in fake clips with the real ones was great. The way reality started to change around them was hilarious; people are already talking about Frank with hair and creepily long legs, but Charlie peaking into his own memories is possibly the funniest thing I’ve seen on TV in a while. Not to mention the word-for-word Seinfeld “The Contest” recreation, complete with two Jerrys. And the best part is that it ends implying that the show going forward is ostensibly taking place within Charlie’s mind (although you could have said that about the show for the past few years, to be honest).

This feels like the kind of episode people will either love or hate. It’s both a little too meta and a little too confined, but I thought the show found brilliant ways to elevate the shortcomings of the bottle/clip episode in perfectly IASIP ways, with perfectly IASIP gags and jokes.

I truly have trouble wrapping my head around how It’s Always Sunny manages to stay this good and this consistent after so many years, no less how it’s managed to put out four bangers in a row. “The Gang Does A Clip Show” gets 9.5 software updates out of 10.


The Best Lines from S13E07 of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia:

  • Goddamnit Count: I didn’t hear any this week! That said there were a bunch of uncensored “fucks” (and a censored R-word, curiously enough).
  • I won’t throw in any lines from the clips but my favourite is probably a tie between Wildcard/the Implication.
  • Frank: “Do you remember when I sowed myself into the couch naked?”
  • Charlie: “The way you tell that is like I was there, and I was not there.”
  • Frank on Dee’s accents: “You’re remembering the time you burned a Mexican’s house down.”
  • Dennis on Dee’s accents: “We decided that isn’t funny anymore, as a society.”
  • Dee: “Yeah, what was that, I am not an ostrich.”
  • Mac/Frank: “Wait, you went to North Dakota?” “I don’t remember Dennis leaving.”
  • Charlie: “Now I’m getting confused because I was remembering the time I spoke Chinese. They gave me a magic pill and now I speak it fluently.”
  • Frank on Seinfeld: “So Jewish.”
  • Doctor/Dee/Doctor: “Your penises have suffered severe abrasions. The skin has been all but been removed from the organs. I’ve never seen anything like it.” “And my vagina?” “I’m afraid it’s been obliterated.”
  • Dennis: “For Christ’s sakes we can’t even sit around having memories without things getting out of hand.”
  • Dennis/Frank: “Frank, are you tall and handsome with a full head of hair?” “I’d like to think so, but no.”
  • Charlie: “Dennis, everyone knows that the most annoying person in the world is Mac. So why would you want to live with him?”
  • Dennis: “I love having a roommate who spends three hours a day on a dildo bike.”

The Best Lines From The Good Place S03E04: ‘The Snowplow’

Among the qualities which help make The Good Place one of the best shows on TV is its impeccable timing. In this age of Peak TV, it’s no longer enough to simply be really funny (but disjointed in terms of plot) or offer mind-bending twists that feel unearned. The Good Place doesn’t have this problem because it’s checks every box. It’s funny on the speed of a show like 30 Rock, it’s twisty akin to a LOST, and it’s well-structured and has weight to it like any number of prestige dramas, despite being a network sitcom.

Pace and timing has a lot to do with making all of this work. I’ve talked a lot in the past about how creator Michael Schur and his troupe of writers have no problem blowing through plot that would be drawn out over multiple seasons, but it’s not simply enough to be fast-pased and forward thinking, because you run the risk of giving your audience a bad case of fear of missing out. The Good Place works because even though you want more of the stuff they leave behind, the path forward manages to be even more compelling.

“The Snowplow” is the latest example of why the show is so good at all of this, as is blows up the premise once again, even though we’re only four episodes into this third season and the new normal of the show after Michael resets the timeline and puts Chidi, Eleanor, Jason and Tahani back in their old lives, as if they never died and spent thousands of years being psychologically tortured by his former, overzealous demon self. Last week, we saw Michael and Janet dispense of Trevor and his attempts to set Michael’s plan ablaze, but in the process they burned their bridge with The Judge, forcing them to go on the run down on earth, devoid of their powers. But they’re still laser-focused on their goal of making sure their four friends tally enough points to make it to the Good Place, so they spend the next year holed up in the abandoned journalism department of the university where Chidi is conducting his study on the rest of the group, spying on them and occasionally interfering in order to put out fired and set them back on track. Unfortunately, their interference backfires when Tahani gets engaged to Larry Hemsworth and vows to leave Australia for London. Michael and Janet try to interfere again at the engagement party, but none of it works and it only helps usher Eleanor down her usual path of destructiveness.

This is where I start to annoyingly sing the show’s praises again, because what follows is kind of beautifully tragic. While Michael panics, thinking the group can’t achieve what they need to unless they stay together in Australia, the gang of four vows to reunite at least once a year at one of their respective homes, signalling that all hope isn’t necessarily lost. Unfortunately Michael isn’t around to see this. Flustered, he devises a Hail Mary plan to break into The Judge’s chambers and reset the timeline, much like he did when the gang first found out they were in The Bad Place (and the hundreds of times they found out thereafter). Unfortunately, they see him open the portal, leaving us with a cliffhanger where the group might suddenly become aware of their sinister situation.

Of course, we’ll have to wait and see how this plays out, if Michael manages to reset the timeline, if everyone goes up to try and help them or if he somehow fools them, but knowing what this show is capable of and what it’s done in the past, it’s likely to be something good and something crazy, turning everything we know about the show on its head once again. And here I thought we were in for an episode of yearly group meet-ups.

Like I said, the twists alone aren’t enough, the show is brilliant on all fronts. Janet spends the episode using the ubiquitous knowledge she still has before she left the afterlife, Michael comes up with yet another persona (Nathaniel Cookswell, caterer to the stars), there’s a debate about Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. The Rock, we were introduced to Superboard, and the show even pays off a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it gag from last week’s episode featuring an Australian version of AUS Weekly (not to be confused with TMZed) revealing a fake, worthless Hemsworth brother, who immediately pays dividends in this episode as a self-loathing baby surgeon who barely even has an eight-pack.

This is a show that’s been firing on all cylinders since late in its first season, and I see no sign of that stopping. “The Snowplow” gets 9 lesser known Hemsworth brothers out of 10.


All The Best Lines from “The Snowplow:”

  • Tahani Namedrops: Giselle Buncheon and, without actually naming him, Tom Brady.
  • The Judge: “I have never been this angry in my life. Which is the age of the universe.”
  • Michael/Judge: “Sorry Judge I think you’re breaking up.” “That’s impossible, it’s a magical key you dick.”
  • Janet: “Not a great star, Eleanor farted and then she blamed it on her chair.”
  • Chidi reading Trevor’s email (which is really from Michael): “I’m sad to inform you that I’m too ugly and stupid to be part of the study and I’m going home to my mommy.”
  • Jason: “Your chair smells bad.”
  • Eleanor: “I try to avoid pointless group activities. You know like office Christmas parties or jury duty.”
  • Eleanor: “Well I’m really good at marketing and I can usually tell how long to microwave food without looking at the box. I would say those are my two main skills.”
  • Janet: “Also that bathroom key that you lost nine months ago slid under the register. And the woman who you think is your aunt is actually your mom.”
  • Tahani after Eleanor wins $18,000: “Better luck next time. Yes, sorry, from context I see that’s actually a large sum of money.”
  • Jason: “Everything here is in a… I don’t know how to describe it, like a different zone of time? No, that sounds stupid. A different clockland!”
  • Jason: “If you want to watch with me you have to learn my Jaguars cheer. It goes, ‘let’s go Jags! Kick their ass! Yeah!’ Do you think you can learn that by the weekend?”
  • Larry Hemsworth: “Stupid Larry stop talking about rocks!”
  • On the Superboard’s news: “Koala exhibit at zoo overrun by extra koalas who just climbed in and won’t leave.”
  • Larry/Chidi: “Still can’t believe she wants to marry me, a dumb old pediatric surgeon who barely has an eight pack.” “Do you not know what you look like?”
  • Eleanor: “Is that why you came out? To scold me about the metric system?”
  • Eleanor: “We hate The Rock because he went Hollywood and Stone Cold keeps it real. So The Rock’s fans are the real jabronis.”
  • Eleanor: “I’m not really an I’m sorry type girl. I’m more of a it’s your fault your car got keyed in the movie theater parking lot because you wouldn’t stop talking through John Wick type girl.”
  • Jason: “We should meet up in Jacksonville. My house is right on the water. It didn’t used to be but the whole city is a swamp and it’s sinking into the ocean.”

The Best Lines from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia S13E06: “The Gang Solves The Bathroom Problem”

The funniest thing about yet another hilarious season 13 episode of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is that the debate that The Gang is having about who should be able to use what bathroom isn’t that far removed from reality, at least in terms of the scope if its ridiculousness. In “The Gang Solves The Bathroom Problem”, they never venture too deep into the actual crazy arguments that most conservatives lean on in this debate, but the idea that one’s identity needs to be tied to where they poop, that one’s safety is in jeopardy if we change the current status quo, is a big part of what’s at stake in the episode, as well as a lot of other more generic political and social topics that The Gang tackles, as the show returns to its more meta format after taking a week off for some more classic Sunny style shenanigans.

In the episode, The Gang, and Dee in particular, are horrified when they see Mac coming out of the women’s bathroom, using his homosexuality as an excuse for why he should be able to use it. The guys first decry his argument to be silly, but when they venture into Dee’s bathroom and realize it’s much better and cleaner than theirs, they all want a piece of the action, leading to a bar-confined debate that spans all of the topics mentioned above, and that winds up going to some truly depraved places as everyone’s poop secrets are revealed.

It’s a classic Sunny bottle episode, akin to the classics “Charlie Work” and “CharDee MacDennis” (although, to be fair, almost every episode this season has veered pretty close to bottle episode status). The entire episode is confined within Paddy’s Pub in order for The Gang to have it out, in this case over politics, which seems to be the new normal for the show. Lining that discussion is a wonderfully ridiculous premise of this being the day of The Gang’s yearly pilgrimage to go see one Jimmy Buffett in concert. Adding to the brilliance is the fact that they never once play Margaritaville or any other Buffett songs, opting instead to score the episode to Rupert Holmes’ Escape (The Pina Colada Song), which many confuse for a Buffett joint. The premise is that half the gang’s disinterest with Buffett himself and the arguments they usually have the night prior always detract from the Buffett experience, and Dennis is desperate to avoid the same trap. Of course, it doesn’t quite pan out that way for him, as The Gang spends the night debating potential changes to Paddy’s bathroom policy, shifting alliances and revealing scatological secrets about one another, all whilst getting into the petty argument they wished to avoid.

Some fans of the show (probably ones who come to it largely for the dunking they do on the one female character) might be growing wary of the show’s bleeding heart liberal stances on big issues this season, but I think it’s been a breath of fresh air for a show that’s been on this long, and it certainly hasn’t detracted from IASIP’s ability to be hilarious. “The Gang Solves The Bathroom Problem” hits all of the checkmarks needed for the show and continues it’s impressive streak in this unprecedented 13th season, so it gets 9 gender fluids out of 10.


The Best Lines From “The Gang Solves The Bathroom Problem:

  • Goddamnit Count: A healthy four this week. More impressive is Mac dropping almost as many F-bombs in this episode, all at Dee’s expense.
  • Mac/Dee: “The whole men’s a women’s bathroom thing is antiquated.” “Maybe, you’re antiquated.” “MAYBE I’LL FUCKING CHOKE YOU OUT.”
  • Frank: “This is all confusing. Why do I have to keep learning new things?”
  • Mac describing his dick mosaic, to the stunned silence of the rest of the Gang: “There’s also pictures of roadkill and roast beef sandwiches to accurately depict what a vagina looks like.”
  • Dee/Frank on the religious symbols on Frank’s sign: “I assume the dollar sign is meant to represent the Jews?” “Well it ain’t the Mormons.”
  • Dennis/Charlie: “We’re talking about evolution, all of a sudden we’re arguing about racism or whether or not ghouls exist.” “They do though, cause I’ve seen one.” (Charlie proceeds to try and choke Mac)
  • Mac/Frank on soundproofing the bathroom: “Some noise to cover the sound.” “Loud noises, like screaming.”
  • Frank, reading the constitution for the first time: “This is wild stuff. There’s a part in here that says that freed slaved are only three fifths of a person.”
  • Dee/Frank: “How do you use three fifths of a bathroom?” “Piss in the sink.”
  • Dennis: “I beg you to stop using the constitutions in the way you’re using it.”
  • Frank: “We outta take (pineapple) off pizza too. Hawaiians are savages.”
  • Dennis to Frank: “I hate when you’re on my side.”
  • Charlie‘s vote swings one way or another based on how the people who are talking are dressed (much like real swing voters): “I like the hat. I was focused on that most of the time. I’m kinda leaning towards you, I don’t know why. Might be the shirt.”
  • Mac: “We need to change out attitudes. And we need to change our latitudes.”
  • Dennis/Mac: “Are you more gay than Catholic?” “I don’t know, they’re at war!”
  • Dennis: “Finally! A win for straight white men.”
  • Dennis: “As a straight man I actually love Pina Coladas. But I don’t like getting caught in the rain, flattens my hair.”
  • Charlie/Dee: You know, as a man who poops transgender-” “You gotta let that go.”
  • Dee/Charlie/Mac: “If we’re all the same then why don’t we focus on treating other people the way we want to be treated?” “Dee… we were just talking.” “Yeah, shut the fuck up. SHUT THE FUCK UP.”

The Best Lines From It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia S13E05: “The Gang Gets New Wheels”

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia has been the recipient of much praise on my part for the changes made over the course of the season, changes necessary following the (very temporary) departure of Glenn Howerton and the increasingly busy schedules of all its stars/creators. Instead of sunsetting a show that clearly still has a ton of life left in it, The Gang used it as an opportunity to inject it with new life behind the scenes, stacking its writers’ room and director’s chair with a bunch of new talented people, many of whom are women, such as Megan Ganz, one of TV’s best writers.

The result has been a lot of meta commentary about equality, the patriarchy, trump-era politics, etc., all culminating in last week’s brilliant, raucous episode, in which The Gang attends a sexual harassment seminar (from which, of course, they learn nothing, as it turns out it was all orchestrated by Dennis in an attempt to gain a leg up in the group’s confusing political structure). And that’s great. But that’s a high concept and it really isn’t a sustainable format for this show. Eventually, The Gang has to wrap up all the sexual harassment seminars and  Wade Boggs flights and whatever else have you and return to their normal array of despicable hijinx.

Luckily, that’s exactly what happens in “The Gang Gets New Wheels”, a hilarious return to form for the more standard style of IASIP episode and the second straight uproarious, perfectly lecherous episode of the show, especially in its final act.

The episode sees Dennis looking for a new car after he finds his Range Rover suffering the effects of being left on the streets of Philadelphia for an extended period of time. When Frank opts to get the new 2018 model for himself instead of financing Dennis’ schemes as he usually does, he’s forced to get a Prius, a more economical car, which leads him to making what he deems to be economical choices with his lifestyle, such as playing fantasy football. While Dennis is losing his Golden God powers, they wind up transferred to Dee, who is drying around in Frank’s new car while he gets his license renewed. She Gangs up with a couple of other Range Rover housewives, who eventually slight Dee to the point where she resolves to cuck one of them. Meanwhile, Charlie and Mac revisit their inner child by buying a couple of bikes, only to find themselves in trouble with a gang of young bullies, one of whom happens to be the kid of their own childhood bully (played by Tyler Labine).

A lot of that is setup, and it plays off that way in the episode, but it’s utterly necessary for the Curb Your Enthusiasm way it winds up weaving together in the final act. You see, Dee thinks she’s having sex with her foil’s young husband, when in fact it’s her teenage son, whom Frank promised he would get laid. Charlie and Mac decide to, in their words, take back their identities and confront their antagonists, it just so happens that this means beating the shit out of a bunch of kids in a scene as funny and unexpected as when Mac grabs Dee by the pussy last week. As for Dennis, he gets lucky when he finds that his new economical buddy owns a ’93 Range Rover, which he acquires for a modest sum. On his peaceful way home, listening to Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up”, he finds the rest of the Gang running from their respective problems (aka the cops), and picks them up, declaring everything to be fine now that they’re back in the Rover.

It’s no surprise that the episode ends with everything returning to normal (despite the various manhunts likely being staged for most of them) but it plays so beautifully over the course of the episode. Every string they lay pays off. It’s a ridiculous episode that shouldn’t make sense when you think about it, but it’s also the product of a show that’s spent 13 years building that seasoning, ensuring that they can pull of a brazenly ridiculous, offensive episode such as this with effortless precision. As much as I love how meta this season has been so far, to see a return to the classic style of Gang hijinx and to see it be as good as the show’s always been is incredibly impressive and refreshing.

“The Gang Gets New Wheels” will compete with the best episodes in recent seasons, and it gets 9.5 bowls of chili out of 10.


The Best Lines from “The Gang Gets New Wheels”:.

  • Goddamnit count: I only counted 1 this week!
  • Frank license picture is clearly an old still from Danny DeVito’s Taxi days, which is amazing.
  • Nothing makes me happier than the fact that they used “On Your Bike” as the song choice for when Mac and Charlie are riding their new bikes.
  • Mac: “Radical!”
  • Mac: “Well, I am gya, but he’s not my boyfriend. I could do much better than him.”
  • Charlie: “Don’t push your agenda on them, Mac!”
  • Dee: “Brenda, you gotta upgrade you stupid bitch. Don’t be a dumb idiot.”
  • Frank: “What you wanna do is you lurch into the intersection. It’s kinda like a game of chicken. You lurch and then you lurch some more and whoever doesn’t flinch gets to go first.”
  • Frank: “You can’t be PC on the road and expect to live. You will die. If you go to a four-way stop and you think the rules of the road are going to apply to an 80-year-old Asian woman, you’re going to get blasted.”
  • Dennis/John: “You got a good economy face on you too.” “What?”
  • Dennis: “It always seemed foolish to me before, but this economy car is starting to make me think I can enjoy economy activities.”
  • Charlie: “I got a Chuck Knoblock, that’s like pre-yips, man!”
  • Dee/Nail Lady: “You probably don’t speak English.” “I speak English, it’s just not funny.”
  • Dee: “Oh Karen, you bitch. You dumb idiot. You stupid savage. You’re not the alpha you crusty-ass fool. Oh, I’m gonna cuck you so hard. Your boy-toy, he’s mine! I will destroy you! I am a 2018 Range Rover woman! I am a Golden Goddess! Who are you? Idiot! Savage! Idiot!”
  • Dennis: “I don’t suck. Dude, I’ll suck YOU.”
  • Dennis on chili: “It makes me fart, and I don’t wanna fart right now. My sister farts a lot.”
  • Dennis: “The Minnesota Twins, you know what I’m saying?”
  • Mac/Charlie: “Are you drinking the Fight Milk?” “It makes me so sick.”
  • Tyler Labine: “What are you gonna do about it?”
  • Dee: “I am a Golden Goddess! You idiot! Savage! Idiot! And I banged your man!”
  • Dennis: “Clutch!”
  • Dennis: “Begone from me you soyboy beta cuck, the transaction is complete!”
  • Frank/Dee: “We almost got t-boned by an Asian. It was totally my fault, she did everything by the book, very surprising. Also Dee banged a kid.” “No, I was trying to cuck a bitch!”