After making routinely "jumping the shark" one of it's core attributes, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia opened up a Pandora's box of sorts.
They could now basically do anything they pleased, as long as it was framed around the exaggerated eccentricities of the characters.
Their attempts at pushing the envelope in this regard has always been hit or miss, and it's too soon to tell where It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia Season 10 Episode 10 falls.
This show has had ultimately harmless, but still ridiculously absurd, running gags like the utter destruction of Rickety Cricket; which are usually pretty hilarious. But with all the provocative topics that are usually at play, it has also had one-offs where Dennis details a system to basically rape someone.
It's all usually funny, and closer to witty and clever, than crude and tasteless, and that's kind of all that matters.
Tonight's finale began the already fleeting season in a tempered way of sorts – especially relative to the note that it ends on. Even though you have Mac and Charlie seemingly part of an exercise cult, it doesn't seem all that extreme, or what you would expect for a finale.
Dax Shepard is there to guest star as JoJo, who was one of the few humans alive to make Charlie look like a Nobel laureate, and other minor characters play a role, as well (Mac and Charlie's parents, "Tiny," etc.).
However, the false sense of stability is quickly removed as Dee, Dennis, and Frank compete to find out who's the most "charismatic" leader.
It all culminates in poor old JoJo diving headfirst into a fire he started, at the orders of cult leader extraordinaire, Dennis Reynolds
Fire's started, thanks for trusting me, this is goodbye!JoJo
Although I was dying of laughter when Dennis first pulled out the cannister, and when he was trying to convince everyone that he won, I was pretty stunned when Shepard's character pretty much died on screen as we watched and through the flames of the fire, the gang discuss what to do and then stroll away in their usual ADHD manner.
The eerie ending featuring the infamous space turtle didn't help me shake that weird, lingering feeling of confusion. I couldn't really believe that had happened! But, as I said, it's probably too soon to really say if it's hilarious (like a lot of Always Sunny's extremities are), or just kind of a sour note.
I guess he's on the mothership now.
Aside from the ending, the episode was typical, entertaining Sunny, and offered us a whole slew It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia quotes.
Dee almost had Tiny, JoJo and Charlie convinced they were on their way to the "mothership," while Frank actually managed to get someone to eat a "shit sandwich." He also seemed to have his hands full instructing Cindy, making the true competition between Dennis and Dee.
I think getting someone to commit suicide trumps all (and getting someone to stop eating thin mints might almost be just as impressive, to be honest), so I guess Dennis does win.
They were gonna light themselves on fire! I'm the winner!Dennis
Watch It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia online to rewatch the finale and catch any highlights you may have missed.
This has ultimately been a great season of It's Always Sunny, and a great reminder that, although its novelty may have run it's course, this show can still be as entertaining as ever.
With two more season already in the works, I look forward to seeing how they can top themselves.