It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

TV review by
Lucy Maher, Common Sense Media
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia TV Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
Irreverent comedy for older teens only.

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 16 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 38 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

While the show parodies current moral topics such as lying, greed, and binge drinking, it does so in a way that could easily be misconstrued by younger audiences. On the face of it, these characters will do anything that benefits them (for example, pretending to be handicapped to score dates).

Violence

The main characters get into fights and, in at least one episode, drink and drive -- which results in a minor crash.

Sex

Sexual innuendo, simulated hooking up, scenes with strippers, trolling bars for the opposite sex.

Language

Strong. Curse words like "asshole," "s--t" and "f--k" are used freely.

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Lots of social drinking, often to the point of excess.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the central characters are immature and get into predicaments ranging from the goofy (pretending to be wheelchair-bound to attract sympathetic members of the opposite sex) to the illegal (drunk driving). The language is strong, and some of the show's situations and innuendoes are too much for younger viewers.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 13, 15, and 17-year-old Written bymodernmother January 11, 2011

Not suitable for the impressionable

A hilarious show for age appropriate viewers, but it requires a knowledge of right and wrong to fully understand. These characters are NOT role models, but can... Continue reading
Adult Written bycami098 August 7, 2020

one of the best comedies!!

this is one of the best current comedies on tv. there is a little sex (very infrequent) but many mentions of it. references is nothing that wouldn’t be said on... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written bymilwaukee bucks April 20, 2017

The best show on TV

It is honestly the funniest thing you will ever see. i have woken up my entire house laughing in the middle of the night. This show has no language that is not... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byJacob Hetfield April 27, 2019

What's the story?

In FX's IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADEPHIA, four self-involved friends from high school who all work in a neighborhood bar attempt to balance their professional and personal lives. Each week, the core foursome stumbles from one bad situation to another while putting the spotlight on social faux pas and moral questions including pedophilia, bribery in politics, gun ownership, and taking advantage of the elderly.

Is it any good?

The show began as a $200 digital camera project that was later sold to FX by executive producers/writers/stars Glenn Howerton (That '80s Show, Must Love Dogs), Charlie Day (Law & Order, Third Watch) and Rob McElhenney (A Civil Action, Wonder Boys) who play Dennis, Charlie, and Mac, respectively. Dennis' sister, Dee, is played by Kaitlin Olson; Danny DeVito joined the show in its second season as Dennis and Dee's dad, Frank (marking DeVito's first regular TV role since Taxi).

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia's humor comes from the offbeat scenarios in which the friends find themselves; the humor is dark and adult, and none of the characters are particularly admirable. For example, when Charlie's ex-girlfriend informs him that he's the father of her child, it inspires Charlie to attend a pro-choice rally in the hopes of meeting another woman. In another episode, Frank returns to tell Dee and Dennis that he and their mother are divorcing. Frank proceeds to call his wife a "whore mother" who is "on vacation banging one of the boys she hangs out with." Younger viewers might find the physical hijinks funny, but the writing and subtle jabs at society's hang-ups will fly right over their head.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about relationships. Why is it important to love and respect your parents, siblings, sons, and daughters? How can family members smooth over differences? Is it easier to confront/get mad at family members than friends? Why or why not?

  • Families can also talk about the issues raised by the show. What is the show trying to say by dealing with sometimes-controversial topics in a funny way?

TV details

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