TV review: ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ is back to the same antics

By Greg Dunbar

Daily Evergreen, Washington State U. via UWIRE

The wait for the sixth installment of the widely popular television show “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” has been over for three weeks now, but the expectation of its assumed hilarity has not quite been met. I make it a point to watch “Sunny” as often as isn’t embarrassing, and I tend to “LOL” more than not.

The actors have created and developed the show since its pilot, with Rob McElhenney (known more commonly as Mac), as the original brains behind the show.

After this season’s third episode, I am still left with a sense of the overuse of, or perhaps deviation from, the formula that worked so well for “Sunny” in the past.

While the episodes’ plots are original, (they have thus far involved the gang going through marriage and divorce and buying a “P-Diddy-style shrimping vessel”), the dialogue between the characters has not been as inventive and has exploited the style of character interaction from earlier episodes.

“Sunny” has an extraordinary way of connecting episodes in a funny and intelligent manner. At the same time, if one is new to the series, jumping right into any arbitrary episode can be enjoyable. The beauty of this show is contained in its ability to make one laugh from a single random episode, as well as to induce appreciation from long-time viewers for overall storyline.

In the past, the gang has consistently brought new and innovative facets of humor to the screen. The appeal of this show is the anticipation of what new comedic realization or aspect the gang will bring to light, whether it be something to which we can all relate, or revealing a previously unknown side of a character. This makes fans appreciate how bizarre and yet pseudo-realistic the members of the gang actually are.

With “It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia,” I never know what to expect. This is what keeps me begging for more with each new installment. From the frequent and appalling illiteracy of Charlie (Charlie Day) to Frank (Danny DeVito) and his vilely comedic antics, I am constantly wondering if the gang will make out worse than the previous episode, or if they’ll even survive the current episode.

The writers have stumbled on a hook that has kept fans biting for five seasons. This hook is the cast’s ability to keep things fresh.

The latest episode, involving the gang’s purchase of a boat, shows signs of using this bait to lure in audience members. However, while this technique has been formerly tried and true, it may be too “tried,” so to speak.

I am still waiting for the gang to introduce me to some new comedic phenomena this season. Given five previously booze-filled sequences of outrageous escapades and schemes, I predict things will get better before they get worse for the gang.

To fellow fans of the crew from Paddy’s Pub, my suggestion is to keep watching. “Sunny” is at a crossroads: It will either stand the test of time or flounder. For those new to the show, tune in, and perhaps you’ll be able to appreciate glue-huffing-induced musical numbers, as I and other “Sunny” addicts have learned to do.

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