• Publication date: October 24, 2010

Meet the Twisted Gang at Paddy�s Pub It�s Always Sunny in Philadelphia: A Case Study in Sociopathy

The gang at Paddy�s Pub has a lot of spare time. That�s because instead of serving drinks or food they�re usually cooking up new schemes to get rich quick, get even with each other, or just ways to create mayhem in general. Aside from that, they never have any customers. The only exception to that rule being when some outrageous event happens at the bar, or when � for example, word gets around amongst local teenagers that the gang will happily serve them alcohol.

The gang at Paddy�s Pub has a lot of spare time. That�s because instead of serving drinks or food they�re usually cooking up new schemes to get rich quick, get even with each other, or just ways to create mayhem in general. Aside from that, they never have any customers. The only exception to that rule being when some outrageous event happens at the bar, or when � for example, word gets around amongst local teenagers that the gang will happily serve them alcohol.

Exactly what the gang does is not necessarily as entertaining as their individual personalities. Dennis Reynolds (Glenn Howerton) and his sister, Deandra (Kaitlin Olson) are a great example. Dennis is a former high school playboy who constantly reminisces upon his adventurous youth, always struggling to prove that he is still able to woo the ladies. Deandra on the other hand is a drama school flunkie, whose hellish adolescent years were filled with constant taunting and a hideous neck brace. Now in her mid-20s, Deandra has transformed into a beautiful lady who uses her looks to con men and lower her brother�s self-esteem.

Dennis and Deandra�s mother, Barbara (Anne Archer) is likely the source of much of their dysfunction: a cold-hearted, gold-digging adulteress whose anti-social behavior transformed her kids into sociopaths. Still, they resent her less than their father, Frank (the legendary and aptly cast Danny DeVito). Much to Deandra and Dennis� relief, however, they learn in season 2 that he is not their biological father. This revelation, in some respects, brings them closer together. Regardless of the kids� feelings about Frank, they inevitably must welcome his presence, since he helps them defeat a cunning Israeli who attempts to destroy the bar. To do this he must obtain partial ownership, much to the gang�s chagrin.

There is also Charlie (Charlie Day) and Mac (Rob McElhenney), classmates of Dennis and Deandra who are partial investors in the bar. Charlie is dimwitted, gullible, and for all intents and purposes functionally illiterate. Though he is generally well intentioned, Charlie is easily manipulated, usually by his roommate, Frank. Together the two join forces to battle Deandra and Dennis. In one episode the two become chronic hoarders, opting to sift through garbage cans for treasures rather than work at the bar.

Mac is a pseudo tough guy with a broken childhood. He often participates in outrageous behavior in an attempt to prove his manliness to Luther (Gregory Scott Cummins), his incarcerated, drug-dealer dad. In some ways Mac can be considered the leader of the group, often devising half-baked plans that everyone reluctantly agrees to.

Ryan (Nate Mooney) and Liam McPoyle (Jimmi Simpson) are a frequently recurring pair of brothers, presumably the product of inbreeding. Both participate in a strange, seemingly homosexual relationship that, quite naturally, makes everyone around them extremely uncomfortable. After the gang exposes the McPoyles� plan to defraud their high school gym teacher they become lifelong enemies. Another recurring character is Matthew Mara, nicknamed Rickety Cricket (David Hornsby), a former priest who left the church in pursuit of Deandra, who repeatedly breaks his heart and propels him into deeper misfortune and shame.

Despite an initially cold welcome by critics, It�s Always Sunny in Philadelphia soon earned a cult following, and has been described lovingly by some as �Seinfeld on crack.� Currently in its fifth season, the program remains a public favorite, presumably with a long and vibrant life ahead of it.

Year: 2005-Present

Duration: 30 minutes

Genre: Comedy

Starring:

Glenn Howerton

Kaitlin Olson

Rob McElhenney

Charlie Day

Danny DeVito

Created By: Rob McElhenney

Rating: TV-MA