It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia S12E02 Recap: 'The Gang Goes To A Water Park'

The proper thing to do would be to treat most if not all episodes of It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia. Any given episode could come on in reruns and you could bet your prolapsed anus that I'm going to sit there and watch it, regardless of whether I would rank it as my all-time favourite episode the worst of the series. But it would be disingenuous of me to suggest that last week's all-time great season premiere wasn't a tough act to follow, even for this show.

Luckily, you forget that this show will probably never peak. And while "The Gang Goes To A Water Park" isn't anywhere near the same level last week's premiere was, it circumvented any potential hangovers by returning the show to the kinds of jokes you'd probably expect from it. That's right: pee, poop, AIDS, and of course, prolapsed anuses.

The episode opens with the Gang waiting in line to get into the titular water park with ostensibly no explanation. Everyone explains what they wan to do there; Charlie and Frank want to prove the place's brochure wrong by riding every slide in a day, Mac and Dee want to get one good, clean ride in before everything becomes infested with urine and spend the rest of the day poolside, and Dennis just kind of wants to lurk around and do Dennis shit. And that's pretty much what ends up happening, as the three groups go off and do their own thing with little inter-mingling.

Frank and Charliefigure out they can skip lines by pretending that Frank has AIDS. Mac and Dee decide to go on a kids ride but wind up getting stuck because of Mac's triple-laminated bracelet, so they wind up trapped all day with a bunch of kids peeing all over them. And Dennis becomes (platonically) enamored with a little girl in whom he sees a potentially expert thief. All of this works pretty well. Frank and Charlie get to run around in funny outfits yelling about AIDS and there's no world where that isn't funny. Mac and Dee get to scream all the GODDAMNITS of the episode and say crash things.

As for Dennis, despite the inherent creepiness of his premise, actually winds up having the most meaningful subplot. He meets this little girl and decides to take her under his wind after she successfully swindles him for $20 bucks. He even passes on hitting on single moms to do so. They have fun, steal a bunch of stuff, but at the end, the girl winds up stealing from Dennis, as the student becomes the master and Dennis is left proud.

As for the other two storylines, Frank and Charlie decide to raw dog an unfinished ride, which leads to Frank bleeding all over the place and everyone freaking out about his AIDS blood. Simultaneously, Dee and Mac find their way out of their slide prison and despite his continued warnings about not sitting on the pool drain, Mac does it anyway.

It's all pretty simple. Nothing crazy happens like last week, no one sings. We just get good Gang antics, lots of crass humour and an unexpected ending. And all of it takes place away from Paddy's Pub, which doesn't feel like that big of a deal.

So we're back to normal, and it's fine. It's no "The Gang Turns Black" but it's another great episode of a show that continues to peak. "The Gang Goes To A Water Park" gets 8.5 vagina AIDS (not the gay kind) out of 10.

Notes & Quotes:

  • Goddamnit Count: 6
  • My favourite thing about this episode is how none of the staff at the water park gave a shit about the ridiculous things the Gang did, which makes this a perfect setting for them. I'm kind of shocked, in fact, it took them this long to do an episode like this.
  • Also love that the unfinished ride was based on Thundergun Express.
  • "What that rascal Charlie up to? What's he up to this time!?"
  • Dennis' favourite things at the water park: "Hot food, cold beer, bikinied women looking for release from the insufferable prison of motherhood."
  • "Shut up nerd!" "Yeah, screw you nerd!"
  • "AIDS! AIDS! I got AIDS!"
  • "Mac, stop talking to children about their buttholes, okay?"
  • "If you were born in China you'd be the head of some factory by now... or they would have thrown you in the river because you're not a boy."