IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY Season 11 Premiere Debriefing: “It’s like all those other games too, but different enough legally.”

IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA -- "Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo" -- Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Andy Buckley as Andy, Danny DeVito as Frank, Charlie Day as Charlie, Rob McElhenney as Mac, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Glenn Howerton as Dennis. CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

In its season 11 premiere, the gang revisits past glories with a sequel to its Game of Games. CharDee MacDennis is back with a vengeance — and even more incomprehensible rules. When an executive from Mattel (The Office‘s Andy Buckley) drops in at Paddy’s and expresses interest in the product, it’s all hands on deck to prove why CharDee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo is the thing we all wish Santa had dropped off this holiday season.

The gang tries to be on its best behavior to spin their game to their guest. “We just have to not care who wins,” they claim. Fat chance!

IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA -- "Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo" -- Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Danny DeVito as Frank, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Danny DeVito as Frank, Rob McElhenney as Mac, Charlie Day as Charlie. CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA — “Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo” — Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Danny DeVito as Frank, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Danny DeVito as Frank, Rob McElhenney as Mac, Charlie Day as Charlie. CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

Pre-Game Wine and Cheese Reception

The day starts promisingly enough. Andy, the newcomer, is charmed by the classy pleasantries, noting that “role playing” is very big in the board game industry right now. That is, until Dennis’ toast to “suck my dick” kicks things off, and he gets more than he bargained for.

IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA -- "Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo" -- Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: Charlie Day as Charlie. CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA — “Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo” — Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: Charlie Day as Charlie. CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

Charlie and Mac’s bugle salute is strange enough as it is, but the flag-raising ceremony is when the gang’s true colours are revealed. Charlie and Mac’s “Thundercats” have been changed to the “Thunder Men,” because they are not cats, duh, while Dee and Dennis’ Golden Geese Harlequin-esque emblem is yet another nod of their relationship crossing every boundary in existence (and not the last of the night); Frank’s own flag is a little too Third-Reich for anyone’s tastes, much to his teammate Andy’s surprise. Not only do the winners get to stomp and burn the losers’ flag, but the Reynolds twins are still undefeated, so the stakes are high.

Level 1 (Mind): Trivia, Puzzles and Artistry

It sounds simple enough: The first team to score three points moves on to the next level. Oh, how little we know.

First up for the Four-Fs in “Trivia”: Which Philadelphia celebrity would they most want to have a drink with? Andy answers Dr. J, but the gang says that’s wrong — even though it’s a question of opinion. The correct answer, apparently, is Bill Cosby, as Dee and Dennis steal the round, though everyone acknowledges the questions are outdated. (Another meta tip of the hat to recent events…)

IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA -- "Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo" -- Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Rob McElhenney as Mac, Andy Buckley as Andy, Danny DeVito as Frank, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Glenn Howerton as Dennis, Charlie Day as Charlie.  CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA — “Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo” — Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Rob McElhenney as Mac, Andy Buckley as Andy, Danny DeVito as Frank, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Glenn Howerton as Dennis, Charlie Day as Charlie.
CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

Next, Dennis picks “Artistry,” which is open to all players. One team member has to create a representation of the item on the card out of clay, while the other has to guess the clue. Naturally, the figures couldn’t be more different — Charlie keeps guessing Mac’s is a penis (callback!), Frank’s is a heart, and Dennis’ is a women’s head in a box. (Where are they getting all this clay from anyway?) It turns out the clue is “Love,” and only Andy guessed correctly, thanks to Frank.

Mac claims his model was Cupid’s arrow, the line through it not a vein as Charlie claims, but a streak in the air. (Oh Mac, are you ever going to admit your phallic proclivities?) Dennis, meanwhile, states that the woman’s head in a freezer represents the preservation of love forever. (Further reinforcing how Dennis really does seem like a serial killer at all times.)

Charlie and Mac are up next to choose (and wish for “no puzzles” despite it being, you know, the only option left). The have to put a beer bottle Dennis has crushed back together, and drink out of it. They painstakingly put it back together with blood, sweat, tears and a glue gun, and by sheer force of will, it works. (Charlie: “I swallowed a little glass, but it held!”)

Andy chooses his card, and it says Dee and Dennis can proceed to Level 2. The fix is in!

But before that, they have to do the Pre-Level I.V. Drip. It’s okay, though, everyone, because they’re mainlining wine, not beer.

Level 2 (Body): Physical Challenge, Pain and Endurance

Again, it appears easy on the surface: Players need to spin the globe, and wherever their finger lands, they must speak in that country’s accent for the rest of the round. Frank and Andy are now Russian, Charlie and Mac get “Bray-zee-al” (Oh Charlie, as illiterate as ever) and give incredibly awful “Cholo” accents, and Dennis and Dee land on, surprise, Philadelphia. Everybody is playing stereotypes full-hilt, and no one escapes unscathed. (I love the wink to the audience when Dennis and Dee try to go full-Philly and Dee gets mocked for it; after all, the show is set in the city of brotherly love…)

IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA -- "Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo" -- Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Glenn Howerton as Dennis, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Andy Buckley as Andy, Rob McElhenney as Mac.  CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA — “Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo” — Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Glenn Howerton as Dennis, Kaitlin Olson as Dee, Andy Buckley as Andy, Rob McElhenney as Mac.
CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

The task is “Hand on a Bird Body”: in other words, holding onto Dee for as long as possible. (Again, another shoutout to Dee’s bird-ness over the years.) Mac gives up first, while Andy doesn’t understand why the rest of the gang is so repulsed by such a “pleasant” woman.

When Dennis expresses disgust at this, Frank counters that he’s uncomfortable with being so close to Dee’s breasts because he really wants to have sex with her — touching upon their weird incestuous vibe once more. (What a shining example of fatherhood Frank is.) This is the final straw for Dennis and he tries to run away, but it turns out his hand is stuck to Dee’s jacket. The fix was in, because he glued it there. Cheaters!

The bright side is this signals the end of the accents in this round. (“We have to be able to berate them in our native tongue, to allow for maximum shame.”) Ding!

Level 3 (Soul): Emotional Battery and Public Humiliation

The card is “Shits and Ladders”: one has to swallow a laxative, climb a ladder, and hold their bowel movements the longest to win. (Also known as “Shoots and Splatters.”) How delightful!

Frank retrieves the strongest laxative he claims he can find, but once everyone else drinks it, it’s clear he’s pulled a fast one on them all. (No pun intended.) He’s skipping them all straight to Level 4 — HORROR. If the gang won’t let him contribute to the game, he’ll get his revenge his own way!

IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA -- "Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo" -- Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Andy Buckley as Andy, Glenn Howerton as Dennis.  CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA — “Chardee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo” — Episode 1101 (Airs Wednesday, January 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Andy Buckley as Andy, Glenn Howerton as Dennis.
CR: Patrick McElhenney/FX

When they come to, they’re chained to pipes in the basement, and Frank appears on the TV (looking a little Penguin-ish if I do say so), and tells them they have to remove the keys to their handcuffs with the tweezers attached to the car batteries in front of them. When they tell him this isn’t fair because the object of their game is that all levels are based on existing board games, he reminds them that this is Operation, a point which they concede. The Golden Geese and the Thunder Men give up, and Frank rushes in to declare victory. Andy isn’t buying it, and says this isn’t what he signed up for — and the gang figure out that this is where the true fix was in, because Andy and Frank know each other. Andy isn’t a Mattel rep at all, and Frank is sandbagging the game.

With Andy gone, this means the battle is now about winning, for real, and the gloves come off. It’s time to return to Public Humiliation!

Charlie has soiled himself, and lost a lot of blood from digging out the keys from his arm, but he insists on finishing the game; in his case, that means enduring a full minute of berating. They’ve got a whammy for him though: it’s not going to be by them — it’s by The Waitress. She gives it her best shot, and it seems like Charlie pulls through, despite his “troll features”!

He wakes up in the hospital, and Dee and Dennis are there to greet him. All he remembers is winning the game and passing out, but the Reynolds reveal he cried like a baby and passed out from blood poisoning. They tell him they didn’t crush his game piece, as they are allowed to do as victors, out of concern for him, but in reality, it’s because they wanted him to be awake to see it. So in his hospital room, as he regains consciousness, they light his flag on fire and stomp on it. Ah, that’s more like it.

The game of games is over for another year, proving once again how awful the gang all are — and why they’re so hilarious to watch in their squalor. How did you enjoy “CharDee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo”? Did those callbacks tickle your fancy, or were you as horrified as our guest?

Nels
Nels knew how to operate a TV remote control before she knew how to talk. As a result, she has spent an inordinate amount of time pretending she actually lives on a soundstage. When she isn’t watching whichever show is currently capturing her heart, she is writing about how said show is currently capturing her heart. She loves pie.

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