This episode of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia Series 10 – ‘Charlie Work’ – is a send up of the comedy of errors that were popular in years past, for example: the guy has accidentally got two dates for the prom and he nearly dies from exhaustion trying not to get found out. But imitation without iteration, without putting something new into the pot, is just the same old gruel you had the day before. Humans are built to desire new experiences after all; that’s why chewing gum loses its taste.
What this episode brings to this old idea is ambition: a seven minute long shot of Charlie (Charlie Day) guiding the health inspector around the bar. Avoiding chickens, a man with no shoes, a glory-hole, and carbon monoxide in the process. Disguised by clever editing (focusing on the door and Charlie’s back to disguise them) it actually seems longer than the seven minutes as well. The highlight of the episode comes in the form of Frank (Danny DeVito) throwing off his clothes and flushing them down the toilet for “control”. It’s a thing apparently. I won’t spoil it for you but it involves g-sharp and the colour black. I had to do a double take for that one.
In conclusion I think this episode is a breath of fresh air. It shows that it is willing to take risks with a tried and tested formula, and in a series I thought was going to be a look back, a celebration, of past glories, it is very welcome. It shows that the writers haven’t run out of ideas. Season 10 of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is now available on Netflix.