Three best friends own a Irish Pub in Phili and get into sticky situations resulting from bad judgment.
Take the best elements from Seinfeld and Arrested Development and you have It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Combining the social-degenerate-buddy formula (three men, one woman) with the beyond-dysfunctional-family element, Philadelphia creates scenarios that are so hysterical, wrong, appalling, familiar, embarrassing, uncomfortable, and entertaining, the show is addictive like staring at a car wreck when you know you shouldn't, but you just can't look away; it's invigorating like a fresh, loud, wake-up slap on the face. The writing, the quick timing, and the performances are so natural, one wonders if anyone is even acting (but hopes to heaven they are). Danny DeVito joined the cast in the second season, in one of the best roles on TV. DeVito is "Frank," the buddy dad that just wants to be part of the gang, the dad that looks good on paper, but the experience for his kids is more like taking care of a vicious dog that isn't potty-trained. Three of his four talented cohorts (Charlie Day, Glenn Howerton, and Rob McElhenney) not only star in the series, but write it as well. Thanks to their new take on old themes and a willingness to stretch the boundaries of appropriateness and exploit the audiences' inner insecurities, originality is back on TV.--Rachel Moss
Stills from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Seasons 1 & 2