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Running Thoughts: Still 'Sunny'! - Broadcasting & Cable

Running Thoughts: Still 'Sunny'!

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It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is back! 

And they’re playing new episodes back to back for several weeks, which is kind of like renting the DVDs of a show and getting to watch more than one episode at once…and then FX is replaying those new episodes during the next hour, so you get to watch them again. And then you get to post an entry to a TV blog and admit that you have way too much time on your hands. (And then…)

Sunny is one of the few shows on TV right now about which I will actually clap my hands and jump up and down in my seat. You should see it–I look ridiculous and my boss just gave me the weirdest look while he was walking by my office.

This show is like a giant comedic id–the characters say the absurd things that you want someone to say about serious issues, but assume that no one will ever actually say in a sitcom.  If you took a stand-up’s act and transferred it to television without sanitizing it for mass consumption, this is what you’d get. With a plot! And really, the fact that there’s a plot involved is just an added bonus.

I can go into how making absurd jokes about real issues is a way of highlighting how serious the issues are, and how this is the only reason TV characters can get away with saying un-PC things. But really, when Dee (Kaitlin Olson) can say to Charlie (Charlie Day), “Give us back our baby so we can paint it,” and Charlie’s response is, “OK, you’re going to paint it,” without breaking the tempo or tone of his monologue or even really seeming to register it, and when lines like that are nowhere near to the focus of the scene and are basically throw-aways, it’s not social commentary. It’s just so very, very funny. 

Which is all I ask of my late-night TV.  

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