FX’s It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is on track to become cable’s longest-running comedy, and is set to tent-pole the launch of a whole new channel next month with its ninth season premiere (FX’s comedy focused spin-off channel FXX). Yet the cult-favorite series is perennially snubbed for Golden Globes and Emmys — not only has Sunny never won a major award, it’s also never even been nominated.*
But the cast is going to tackle the issue in an episode this fall titled “The Gang Desperately Tries to Win an Award.” The setup: They realize all the other local bars win awards and so they visit the competition to see what they’re doing “right.” Then they change Paddy’s Pub to try and fit the formula. Naturally, the makeover doesn’t go very well.
When the subject was brought up while the gang was on a press tour panel in Beverly Hills on Friday, there was naturally some riffing about this:
“I didn’t even realize the nominations came out until a couple days later,” said co-star Kaitlin Olson. “I was like, ‘oh, it’s a shame again this year.’”
“Gary Oldman hasn’t won an Academy Award,” said co-star Glenn Howerton. “We’re the Gary Oldman of shows.”
“There’s traffic and then you have to put the suit on…” co-star Danny DeVito said.
“You have to do makeup and stuff…” Olson added.
More seriously, creator Rob McElhenney thought that the show’s trajectory may be a reason for being overlooked, too. “We were off the radar for so long, by the time we’re [more visible] in the fifth season, the Emmy voter is thinking, ‘That’s not the new show, it’s the old show,’” he said. “Honestly, we haven’t made a concerted effort to [try to win].”
Other episodes next season include an Flowers for Algernon-inspired episode penned by Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss where Charlie takes a drug that makes him smarter, a Thanksgiving-themed episode where the gang invites all their enemies to dinner, they’re also doing another Lethal Weapon parody, plus Gale the Snail (Mary Lynn Rajskub) and Bill Ponderosa (Lance Barber) are coming back.
*There was one nomination for a minor category: An Emmy nom this year for Outstanding Stunt Coordination for a Comedy Series or a Variety Program, which sounds like a self-effacing joke the show itself would make.