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October 22, 2014

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: The Gang Gets Invincible

by Joel Keller, posted Sep 13th 2007 11:03PM
It's Always Sunny: The Gang Gets Invincible(S03E02) You may have never seen Invincible, but you know what it's about. Schmo off the street tries out for the Philadelphia Eagles. Odds are against the schmo. Everyone tells schmo he's fooling himself. Schmo makes the team, despite the odds, and plays in the NFL. Schmo is triumphant. We've seen the formula a million times.

Only the story behind Invincible really happened, since it was the story of Vince Papale, who played for the Eagles in the seventies. So what if every lunk with some tidbit of football skill came away from the movie thinking they could make the Eagles? That's what the crew from Paddy's is going to find out.

Well the crew really doesn't think they're going make the team. Dennis and Mac are going to meet Donovan McNabb, run around on the field of Lincoln Financial Field, and make fun of the people who are actually taking the fantasy camp seriously (they get none of those wishes). Dee is going because the guys goaded her into proving she's better at football than they are. And Charlie and Frank are just tailgating, with help, in the case of Frank.

Can I just take this moment to mention how seamless the addition to Danny DeVito was to this show? All last season, he showed that he fits well in the ensemble, despite his star status, and he's twisted enough to make Frank the perfect older "role model" for the Paddy's crew, especially the shrill and illiterate Charlie. DeVito and Charlie Day make a good comedic team, and it shows here, as Charlie's disgusted reactions to Frank dropping acid are really funny ("I'm gonna trip balls!"), especially because Charlie himself is getting quickly drunk. The acid makes Frank paranoid, especially when he thinks he's locked in an RV's bathroom, like he was at Woodstock ("I survived on hand soap and toilet water for three days. The memory haunts me.").

Then there are the McPoyles. Yes, the inbred family we've grown to love is back, to cheer on brother Doyle as he seriously tries to make the Eagles. God, the McPoyles are freaks, aren't they? The unibrow, the voices, the unibrow... not a fun sight. It's interesting that Ryan McPoyle is played by Nate Mooney; wonder if being on It's Always Sunny got him the part playing the similarly inbred Kenny on fellow FX show The Riches (along with Kaitlin "Sweet Dee" Olsen, who was also great on that show)?

So, this is the second time Dee has worn facial hair, but this time it's fake -- in last year's "Hundred Dollar Baby," her steroid addiction gave her real facial hair. Seeing Dennis and Mac jump-tackle Dee was hilarious, but Dee got her revenge; she kicked the crap out of that ball, didn't she? Problem is, her timing sucked; when she got the attention of the coach, her glass-like foot snapped and she went down in a heap. But she was warned ("Your body is like 90% scoliosis, Dee").

What else was funny here? How about Geoffrey Owens, Elvin from The Cosby Show, stepping in for McNabb, and promoting McDonalds on top of it? Maybe a trippy Charlie (Frank put acid in Charlie's beer) donning his Greenman suit and dancing with the McPoyles (when they talked about the suit at the beginning of the episode, little did I know it had no eyes or mouth... just one big tube o' green)? Frank's freak-out? Dennis thinking he's an actual athlete? It was all good.

Oh, and the final scene, when Frank accidentally shoots Doyle, who actually made the team, will come back and haunt the Paddy's crew later on, as the McPoyles show up in a later episode. I won't give any more details, but suffice to say when life comes back to bite the gang in the collective ass, it does so in some very funny ways.

What did Charlie's Greenman suit remind you of?
A big green condom198 (27.7%)
A huge lizard142 (19.9%)
Pickles21 (2.9%)
Kermit the Frog on Ecstasy353 (49.4%)

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