FX sitcom It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is sort of like Dijon mustard; it’s an acquired taste that certainly isn’t going to play well with a wide, mainstream audience. Myself, I’d heard raves from a couple friends whose opinions I don’t entirely distrust, so several years back I grabbed a couple episodes on TiVo and… nothing. I have little recollection of the specifics, but I just wasn’t feeling it. The series centered around a band of misfit/miscreant friends who gathered at the serially uninhabited Paddy’s Pub, and treated each other (and everyone else) pretty horribly. The tone struck me as at once spiteful and manic, and the comedy seemed forced — driven by doggedly persistent overlapping patter that augured a snappish screwball sensibility that really wasn’t there in the jokes.
And yet, some time later, I returned, maybe lured into giving it another chance by an off-season promo that favorably stacked up a bunch of clips. When I tried it again… well, I wasn’t hooked, per se, but I certainly did appreciate its wonked, preening and entirely narcissistic style of deadpan humor. I embraced and laughed at its outrageousness, some of it approaching the absurdist sensibility of a live-action South Park, only except with multiple Cartmans instead of just one. Especially brilliant was the episode D.E.N.N.I.S., in which Dennis (Glenn Howerton) presents and takes a bet regarding his sociopathic method of seducing vulnerable members of the opposite sex, only to find Mac (Rob McElhenney) and Frank (Danny DeVito) doing battle with their own systematic schemes to feast on his “sloppy seconds” (or thirds, as the case may be).
The Blu-ray version of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season 6 collects a dozen episodes of this type of serial inappropriateness, including what has to be the season’s high point — an extended, unrated cut of Charlie (Charlie Day) and Mac’s self-financed production of Lethal Weapon 5 (don’t ask). Another highlight is definitely the gang’s quest to find out who knocked up Dee (Kaitlin Olson). Housed on 50GB dual layer discs stored in a standard Blu-ray snap-case, the two-disc set comes with a blooper reel, anarchic audio commentaries on select episodes, a clutch of deleted and extended scenes, special podcasts featuring Dennis and Dee, and a special “Flip Cup” trivia challenge. A DVD version is also available, but to purchase the Blu-ray version from Amazon, click here. B- (Show) B+ (Disc)