Home > #3, Media grammar > It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is an explicit sitcom style comedy created by Rob McElhenney, Glenn Howertonand and Charlie Day, who are also stars in the show. The show is about three childhood friends Dennis, Mac, and Charlie, who refer to themselves as “the gang”.  Dennis has a sister “Sweet Dee”, and father, played by Danny DeVito these too also play major roles in this show. These five colorful characters own Paddy’s Pub a deprived bar in South Philadelphia and all drink profusely. All of the characters in the show are very selfish, unethical and manipulative, which makes for great comedy.

One subtext is that if you only care about yourself then your life will never advance.  A different subtext is that if you drink too much it will be hard for you to lead a productive lifestyle. There is a very prevalent drinking problem in our society that this show depicts in a harsh manner. Most of the problems which arise in the show are rooted in the evils of alcohol and its effects on people. This happens all too often in our culture, families get torn apart, people lose their lives from bad decisions while drinking, and it is just terrible for your health.

This show does not show up in print media that often because it is a show that is not as popular of a series as Gossip Girl or Entourage. It is not a very main stream show which gets a lot of media attention.

Throughout an episode you would hear that much music. The only times you will are at the beginning, returning from commercial, and the end. The theme song is “Temptation Sensation” by Heinz Kiessling which is the sole song played in the above allotted periods during the show. It is a jubilant classical piece of music full of string instruments accompanied by flutes. This song reminds me profoundly of the music playing in “The Sims” computer game when buying new furniture or housing materials; it could quite possibly be the same song.  I think the music selection is very ironic. The song sounds like something you would find playing in a very affluent store or a very white collar event, and then the director cuts to the opening scene in a bar or another non-attractive setting far from the epitome of “rich”.

This is defiantly a comedy intended for mature audiences due to some of the topics discussed. The point of view of the show is that people take themselves too seriously sometimes and if you do this often you will end up being miserable. Also that people should not try so hard to be “cool” because everyone can achieve that status by being who they are.

The audience of the show is expected to know right from wrong. This is because the characters do wrong things intentionally in order to create humor in what would otherwise be a dull show. The audience must have an acquired taste to a more vulgar type of humor. This show can be found in the online environment through free online websites such as Hulu and the FX channel website which the show regularly broadcasts.


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  1. tessdoez
    January 17, 2011 at 1:38 am

    This is a good start on a few different levels. You point out the sparing use of music in the show, but can you do a little analysis of how this contributes grammatically? Why do you think they only use the one piece of music? What affect does this have on viewers? You also toss quite a few different subtext options out there. Can you chose one–something that the show says about society perhaps–and do a little bit of development of the idea? There are also a number of grammatical/sentence structure errors that need to be fixed. Please make these corrections and resubmit for credit.

    • na828
      February 15, 2011 at 4:45 am

      Hey Tess I am pretty sure that I revised this post, but I am not sure if you saw it because it still has an “O” on blackboard. If you could look at it and let me know if I am mistaken that would be very appreciated.
      Thanks Nate

  2. tessdoez
    February 16, 2011 at 2:27 am

    Thanks for letting me know you revised this Nate, I changed your grade on BB.

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