It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Five Wicked Money-Making Schemes The Gang Tried
Sleazebag owners of Paddy’s Pub from the comedy series ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ have always tried to pull off hilariously wicked money-making schemes throughout the series. Although tending the bar might be simpler, The Gang’s zany antics call for entertaining mishaps.
Beloved amoral bartenders Dennis (Glenn Howerton), Dee (Kaitlin Olson), Mac (Rob McElhenney), Frank (Danny DeVito), and Charlie (Charlie Day) return for another season this June 7. Debuted in 2005, the cult sitcom is the longest-running live-action American comedy series with razor-sharp humor and stinging social satire.
Five Wicked Money-Making Schemes The Gang Tried
To mark the 16th season, I looked back to The Gang’s business exploits, which may or may not be bordering criminality and insanity.
Wolf Cola: A Public Relations Nightmare (Season 12, Episode 4)
The fraudulent soda company Wolf Cola, which Frank initially put up as a money laundering front, has grown into a national scandal. He discovers that the energy drink he assumes is popular among Jewish retirees in Boca Raton is, in reality, the official drink of Boko Haram, a notorious African terrorist organization.
In their disastrous appearance on the local morning news, Dennis responds with perfectly slick corporate malfeasance-speak, while Frank tries to soften up the image of Boko Haram.
The Gang exploits a miracle (Season 2, Episode 7)
The Gang into a ‘goldmine’ – a water stain in Paddy’s office that resembles the Virgin Mary. When the turnout of patrons’ offerings was not enough, the Gang hatched a strategy to increase the bar’s publicity.
Dee tries to seduce Matthew “Rickety Cricket” Mara (masterful performance by David Hornsby), a priest and bullied old classmate who had a crush on her in high school, into blessing the stain. When he refuses, Frank hires the senile priest Father O’Grady, who urinates over the stain afterward. Cricket leaves the priesthood and succumbs to a PCP-snorting street rat and dog janitor.
Sweet Dee gets audited (Season 7, Episode 4)
Dee seeks to scam the government of tax breaks by declaring her prior surrogate child as a dependent. This ruse, however, is short-lived when the IRS shows up on her doorstep looking for fictional baby Barnabus Reynolds.
To avoid a felony prosecution and deter the IRS from investigating the bar’s shady books, the Gang stages a phony funeral for young Barney. On paper, this sounds even darker. Also, the sequence in which the casket collapses, revealing the dead dog from the alley inside, is a masterclass in black comedy.
Hundred Dollar Baby (Season 2, Episode 5)
Mac and Dennis manipulate Charlie, the Gang’s whipping boy, into training for an underground fighting ring to make quick banks. As good friends do, they prepare Charlie by getting him intoxicated, then bash his head and body with anything imaginable.
However, all of his head trauma was for nothing when he and Dee were arrested for assaulting a bystander while high on steroids. Mac takes Charlie’s place and loses, but Dennis profits by betting against him.
Frank’s Back in Business (Season 8, Episode 7)
Fight Milk, the “alcoholic, protein-based milk” for badasses and the brainchild of Mac and Charlie, found a new market. The duo finds UFC fighters used their ‘crowtein’ concoction to expel bodily fluids to slim down before the weigh-in. Well, crow eggs, milk, and vodka will do that.
Unfortunately, with the new formula, adding crow fecal matter and human growth hormone (HGH), the fighters tested positive for performance-enhancing substances.
Here are the special mentions. Dee and Dennis offensively pretend to be mentally disabled and have a crack cocaine addiction for welfare checks; Charlie and Dee sew costumes for January 6 insurrectionists; and the Gang became a gas salesman and sold barrels door to door.
One thing is certain, The Gang creates new lows with their narcissism and greed when the opportunity arises for self-preservation. For parting words, “I like to quench my thirst with a delicious Wolf Cola. There’s nothing like that… to wash away the sorrow.”
Aubrey is a budding writer that covers facets of the entertainment industry— but television is what she's most passionate about. She grew up watching reruns of old sitcoms like Malcolm in the Middle, Girlfriends, and Everybody Hates Chris. Aubrey also enjoys video essays in Youtube in her downtime.