It’s Always Sunny: Every 2020 Disaster The Gang Was Involved In

Warning: the following contains SPOILERS for It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia.

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia season 15, episode 1, “2020: A Year In Review,” reveals what happened to each member of the gang during the show’s pandemic hiatus and every 2020 diaster they were involved in. Since the first season of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia was released back in 2005, each succeeding year save for 2014 saw a new season of the comedy series, a trend that was again bucked in 2019 because of the pandemic, which led to a two-year hiatus for the show. In 2021, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia’s absurd cast of miscreants came back for a 15th season. And in the first episode of the latest season, Frank (Danny DeVito), Charlie (Charlie Day), Dennis (Glenn Howerton), Mac (Rob McElhenney), and Dee (Kaitlin Olson) recall what happened to their characters during the century’s most tumultuous year.

The episode begins with the gang preparing for an upcoming business meeting that could potentially allow them to expand and improve operations at Paddy’s Pub. However, it’s shortly revealed that what they thought was a loan opportunity is actually a government representative coming to investigate PPP loans that they’ve already incurred. Gary (Brian Huskey), the government inspector, then asks the gang to discuss what they’ve been doing with their pandemic business assistance money during the past year. This leads the gang to discuss three separate stories – one for each of the three PPP loans they received from the government. In short, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia season 15 reveals they were all involved in a number of calamitous 2020 events.

Related: It's Always Sunny Proves Being Frank Is Pretty Gross

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia’s gang takes this opportunity to take accountability for some of 2020’s most memorable disasters. In a nutshell, where they went, chaos followed. Here’s every 2020 disaster and monumental event they were involved in and how gang made them possible.

Mac and Dennis used their PPP loan to finance a business called Punch Incorporated, which, according to Mac, allowed him to pursue interests that are “as intellectually stimulating as choking out a jabroni and leaving him out in the street.” Similar to how the clip episode format is subverted in It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia season 13, episode 7, “The Gang Does A Clip Show,” season 15’s “2020: A Year In Review” puts a new spin on the classic recap. Through Punch Incorporated, Mac and Dennis acquire tactical gear in an effort to ensure peace and order at Philadelphia’s polling booths – but only succeed in causing a nuisance. True to form, Mac and Dennis get lost in their own self-centeredness by ignoring the elections and debating whether Rocky Balboa or Donovan McNabb is the best athlete to represent Philly.

While they initially use the question to vet authentic Philadelphia voters, Mac and Dennis eventually deploy several ballot boxes of their own to put it to a vote. This leads to voters mistakenly putting their ballots into Mac and Dennis’ boxes, making the two directly responsible for the counting delays that caused the election-related riots in Philadelphia – a new low for the gang since they held a Thanksgiving dinner for some of their worst enemies in "The Gang Squashes Their Beefs." As Mac and Dennis’ decisions reflect the actions of militants causing chaos at the polling booths, Gary assumes that the gang supports Trump. However, in It's Always Sunny in Philadelpia season 15’s first successful twist, the end of “2020: A Year In Review” reveals that the gang actually voted for Kanye West.

A bad hair dye job by Charlie makes Frank realize that he’s let himself go during the pandemic, echoing people’s insecurities during the peak of the mandated lockdowns. This leads Frank to use his PPP loan to develop the perfect hair dye using Chinese motor oil, and then open a speakeasy-like saloon for like-minded individuals. It’s implied that Frank’s clientele are not unlike his typical business partners – mostly criminals. After setting up his hair-dying saloon at the back of a porn shop that he frequents, Frank ends up raking in the dough during a tribute montage to Martin Scorcese’s Goodfellas. Eventually, Frank’s saloon gets enough of a reputation to draw in America’s mayor himself, Rudy Giuliani. However, because Frank cut corners by using American motor oil instead of the good stuff, his revolutionary product ends up dripping down Giuliani’s face. Apart from painting Giuliani as a crook, Frank’s use of Chinese motor oil could be a reference to Guiliani’s Asian accent scandal, which also happened in 2020.

Related: It’s Always Sunny: How Mac’s Mom Changed Over The Years

As for Dee and Charlie, their PPP loan was used to fund Garments and Varmints. While Dee wants to make face masks featuring lame jokes, Charlie focuses on Halloween masks for people to celebrate after the pandemic. It’s all a silly setup for the reveal that Dee and Charlie are responsible for creating the fur costume donned by the infamous QAnon Shaman during the riot at the U.S. Capitol. As the episode ends, the reveal that the gang actually supports Kanye and not former president Donald Trump puts into focus just how similar the two public figures are. Out of the three stories in It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia season 15’s first episode, Dee and Charlie’s 2020 misadventure is the weakest link, as it’s mostly a long and convoluted setup for a predictable joke. However, it does serve to put a satisfying cap on the episode.

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia season 15, episode 1, “2020: A Year In Review,” is quite an underwhelming start for the new season. However, considering how the show is still shaking off the rust from its two-year absence, the episode serves as a good way to catch up with the gang and re-establish the series’ absurd foundations. In fact, the dismissible first episode was followed up by a brilliant piece of satire in It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia season 15, episode 2, “The Gang Makes Lethal Weapon 7,” in which the show uses its infamous blackface controversy to tackle the problems haunting the entertainment industry. Although season 15’s takeoff may have been a bit rough, the gang seems to be on the way to sticking the landing in the series finale.

More: Always Sunny's "The Gang Gets Trapped" Is The Show's Quietest Episode

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia airs Wednesdays on ABC.

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