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It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia - Dennis' Double Life - Review


It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia has always been one of the most unique live-action sitcoms on the air. Its originality in plot and characters has helped the comedy to stand out for 12 seasons, with at least two more yet to come. It's extremely rare for live-action shows to go on that long, but the It's Always Sunny train keeps rolling because it follows the structure of animated shows by almost never having any permanent development and keeping the characters virtually the same, keeping their characters simple and funny as-is. However, this finale uproots their status quo in a huge way.

The episode starts with the gang, minus Dennis, at Paddy's. Mac reveals to the others that he finally got a rocket to put into the rocket launcher he got for Dennis on Valentine's Day. They plan to use it soon because, of course, the gang can't go a few days without committing some kind of felony.

Dennis comes charging into the bar with a woman and a baby right behind him. His baby, as he reveals. It turns out that Dennis, under the alias of rich Canadian Brian LeFevre, got a woman pregnant in North Dakota during the airplane trip they took a short while back when they were trying to beat Wade Bogg's record for drinking 50 beers on a single flight. Dennis is worried that if she finds out he's actually poor American Dennis Reynolds, she will come after Paddy's. Some plans are thrown out there for how to handle this, and for now, they go with Mac's plan for Dennis to pretend he is in a gay relationship with Mac to keep her away.

Mac brings Dennis and the woman (Mandy) back to his and Dennis' newly refurbished apartment. Now fixed after having been set on fire some time ago, Mac was able to completely replicate the way the apartment looked before, right down to the knick-knacks. Dennis tells Mandy he is in an emotionally gay relationship with Mac, so he can't be with her emotionally. She is surprisingly cool with it and encourages the both of them to be co-fathers to Brian Jr. Mac's in, but Dennis is not.

In one of the more important developments in this episode, Charlie has come up with a plan to entrap the Waitress into his life by knocking her up. Of course, Charlie has been after her for the entire show but she has always rejected him, preferring to be with literally anyone or anything else. He tries to convince her that he is her only option if she ever wants to have children, getting older and having zero prospects and all, and this leads to a big blow up about why Charlie is so obsessed with her and why she won't be with him. She downplays herself by saying she's a huge mess, but he doesn't care. He loves her anyway. His sweetness softens her up enough to do something nobody thought would ever happen; sleep with him.
Dennis confronts Mac about him agreeing to help raise Brian Jr. What's interesting about this scene is it shows off not just Mac's recently realized homosexuality but his possible crush/interest in Dennis. It's been hinted at in earlier seasons, but his persistence with keeping up a fake gay relationship with Dennis says a lot. Needless to say, Dennis wants nothing to do with that.
After their hook-up, the Waitress is now much more enamored of Charlie than she ever has been and is on board with getting pregnant. Charlie though, in a turn of events, seems to be quickly losing interest in her and a life with her after she goes off on him about him needing to change everything about his life for their possible baby. It's a mean side to her he doesn't know and doesn't like.
The third plot for this episode amounts to Dee being glad to finally have her apartment back to herself after Mac and Dennis stayed there for so long, but all of the boys at various times come over and invade her privacy. Frank needs a place to stay while Charlie makes time with the Waitress, then Charlie stays trying to get away from the Waitress, then Dennis comes by to drop off Brian Jr for a few hours. Since Dennis was not able to put off Mandy with his fake relationship with Mac, he goes to the backup plan of Frank getting a millionaire to give her enough money to go away.

He and Mac have breakfast with Mandy and wait for the millionaire to show up. It ends up being Frank himself. Frank makes an "Indecent Proposal" by offering her $5,000 to bang her. She's a no-go for that. In fact, the conversation that follows nearly blows their cover and makes her suspicious. He and Mac go back to Dee's apartment and plan to stay there, along with Frank and Charlie for various reasons. She's had it with them invading her space and comes up with her own plan to get rid of Mandy; kill Brian LeFevre.

Dennis takes Mandy and Brian Jr. to an alleyway. He pretends to be a guy holding secret government information and therefore has people wanting to assassinate him. The plan falls apart after he starts "bleeding" before a gunshot even goes off and the gang arrives to watch his "death."
Mandy shockingly doesn't fall for it. She's realized that Dennis is trying to get her to go away. She's very mature as she says that she just wanted Brian to have a father but doesn't want to be with someone who doesn't want to be with them, she even lets Dennis take a moment to say goodbye to his son. As he does, he actually looks quite remorseful about them leaving.
Back at Paddy's, the gang is dancing and acting like they don't have a care in the world. Dennis is sitting forlornly at the bar. Watching his friends, he contemplates just how immature they all are and how ridiculously they (and him) have been behaving. He can't do it anymore and wants to go be a dad to his son.
This is the most selfless and mature as we've ever seen Dennis. Normally he's all about him and doing what he wants, so this is a nice character growth to see, even though it was a little abrupt. He leaves and the rest of the gang can't believe it. Rather than spend time thinking about Dennis and what he's said, they use their rocket launcher to blow up a car. Yep. That's about right.


Unlike previous season finales, this episode focused more on plot and character development. Charlie finally banged the Waitress and Dennis has gone on to be the father to his son that Frank never was for him. Like I said before, this kind of change can be a dangerous thing for a show going on this long, but I am curious to see what the show is going to be like now without Dennis since it looks like Glenn Howerton is actually leaving, presumably for his new show A.P. Bio. But as Kaitlin Olson has made time for Sunny even with her show The Mick, I hope Glenn can do the same with his. Still, as they showed with the rocket launcher, it looks like the show is ready to be just as crazy and entertaining without him.

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