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‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia‘ Review: “The Gang Dines Out”

'It's Always Sunny in Philadephia' "The Gang Dines Out"
FX

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia‘ has had an okay season so far. This may not be an all-timer, but there’s definitely been some good to great episodes, and only a few mild clunkers. Last week’s episode “Charlie Rules the World” was one of the best, so here’s hoping with tonight’s penultimate season eight episode, “The Gang Dines Out.”

The episode starts at 8:17 PM on a Saturday at the restaurant Guigino’s where Dennis and Mac are having their monthly dinner. They spot Charlie, who shows up with Frank (in a toupee) to celebrate the anniversary of their moving in together. They then spot Dennis and Mac and decide to get their own table, while both parties wait for the other to come over to say hello. It also turns out that Dee is there and annoyed.

Dee was there first and is also waiting for everyone else to come over and pay tribute to her (she’s also reading the book ‘Lust & Found’), even though no one’s seen her. Dennis is getting annoyed that Frank and Charlie haven’t come over, and Dennis has a freak out on the waiter because his chair is wobbly. Dennis then orders Frank and Charlie a glass of house red wine. Charlie and Frank are arguing about who should come over and when the wine arrives and Frank feels that it’s an attempt to agitate them. He says two can play that game.

Dee flags down a gentleman to her table and tells him that men are staring at her. But when she simply wants him to join her for dinner he leaves, while Dee refuses to order. Dennis gets some matches for the chair, but wants another and tries to bribe his way to a new one. They get a bottle of a wine from Frank and Charlie that they’re told is the most expensive in the restaurant. Dennis decides to pour it out. Frank is upset, and then points out to Charlie that the other two treat him poorly, which gets Charlie riled up.

After the waiter comes over to take Dee’s empty chair she tries to get him to tie Dennis’ shoelaces together, which the waiter rejects. Even with a new a chair, Dennis is having a freakout, to which Mac yells at him for being a jerk. Mac then stands up to leave, waiting for Dennis to say something nice to him, as he’s about to when Frank interrupts to make a toast to a returning soldier in the restaurant, and they’ve given everyone but Dennis and Mac shots of sambuca, and suggest anyone who doesn’t have sambuca hates America. Dee then joins the table of the returning vet, but gets kicked out. Dennis takes up a microphone to celebrate the man that encouraged him to do a wicked jackknife. That man is Mac, and Dennis sings him “Wind Beneath My Wings” and gets scattered applause. Frank and Charlie then turn up the AC on Dennis and Mac, as they’re sitting beneath the vents, and it’s about to become all out war when the waiter gets run into with two plates of spaghetti, and it turns out that his shoes were tied together by Dee, and they all salute each other.

This is the penultimate episode of the season, and it’s a builder. It starts a little weak, and this one seemed to have more commercial breaks than normal, but it ends well enough. With one location, this feels kind of like a bottle episode, but you’d expect one of those to be set in the bar. That said, it feels like a modest episode, a placeholder. Hopefully, they close out strong next week.

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