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On a Monday
Last week we saw the gang trapped in a convenience store, with most of the action taking place in their own minds (the best sequence was by far Charlie’s "Up" parody). In this week’s bottle episode, the gang is trapped in Paddy’s Pub, with all of the action — save for one scene in a convenience store and another in a hospital — taking place right there.
How does the gang get themselves in this situation? It’s not their fault, of course. No, it’s the fault of a flu outbreak going on in the city outside their walls. Wanting to save their singing voices for a Boyz II Men competition (seriously), the gang decides to have what Charlie calls a “quarantine party” and secludes themselves in the bar. Things quickly escalate though when Dennis orders a pizza, and a germ-paranoid Franks has him locked away in the always-decrepit men’s room (although really, is there actually a women’s restroom in this bar?).
As Dennis grows sicker and sicker in the bathroom, Dee, Mac, and Charlie think of ways to enhance their Boyz II Men act. This leads a hilarious couple of scenes where Charlie misinterprets Mac’s suggestion that they wear the same costume to mean that they all literally climb in the same costume together (his drawing of said costume is priceless), as well as one where Dee concocts this ridiculous backstory for their group involving “Religious, stuttering army carnies!” It’s all for the purpose of, you know, gaining them more sympathy from the judges. And even though Dee herself eventually ends up getting quarantined in the bathroom with her brother, Kaitlin Olson earns her spotlight in the episode just for her stuttering delivery of the line, “He got throat cancers from eatin’ some bad pussy!” (Hmm, just which famous actor do we think she is referencing there?)
Mac is the next one to get quarantined, but only after he and Charlie venture out to get supplies wearing protective suits, and he rips his while trying to demonstrate his “Fly Girl” dance moves. Charlie joins the bathroom rejects soon after, but on his own accord in an effort to escape Frank’s growing germ-phobia madness. The gang gets horrifyingly sick in the bathroom, but only when they appear near death do they realize that they are actually going through alcohol withdrawal rather than the flu. It’s incredibly amusing to watch their revelation, as they all reveal that they have their own personal stores of alcohol stashed around the bar. They finally admit they are alcoholics, but hey, they’re not going to stop at this point, right?
But the most hilarious part of the episode by far is Frank’s storyline. As he grows increasingly paranoid of getting sick, he shaves off all his body hair and coats himself in hand sanitizer gel. There’s just nothing like seeing Oscar-nominee Danny DeVito naked, hairless, and writhing on the floor in translucent slime. Really, if you thought Frank emerging naked and sweaty from a leather couch in the It’s Always Sunny Christmas special was the peak of what DeVito is willing to do for this show, guess again.
Unfortunately, Frank’s measures to stay healthy turn out to be not enough, and he is actually the only one of the gang who does get sick and winds up in the hospital. But it’s cool because his doctor at the end is played by Jim O’Heir, or as he is better known, Parks and Recreation’s Jerry. What isn’t cool for the gang though is that the Boyz II Men contest is canceled, as the band’s stars end up coming down with the flu and decide not to do the concert that the competition was for in the first place. But hey, it just wouldn’t be “It’s Always Sunny” if everything worked out for the best in the end.
All in all, it’s a fun episode that harkens back to season three’s “The Gang Gets Held Hostage”, when the McPoyles took over the bar and held the gang against their will. The only problem here is that the McPoyles are way more interesting and hilarious than invisible germs, but oh well.
Fun fact: This is the second episode of the season written by David Hornsby, better known to fans as “Rickety Cricket," or as newcomers to the show may know him, Emily Deschanel’s husband.