Frank is one of the most essential parts of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, and some of his best episodes are total classics.
When the series started, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia already had a dynamic cast and plenty of edge. However, things truly got knocked up a notch when Danny DeVito offered his services. Without Frank Reynold’s seemingly endless amount of wealth, The Gang wouldn’t be able to start half of the schemes that they’ve had; and without his increasingly erratic behavior, they would likely be able to get away with a few.
Flaws aside, Frank Reynolds’ old age, adventurous ambition, and troubled past have constantly added to the series, making him not only a key cast member but an immortal, television character. Because of these traits, Frank is responsible for plenty of classic episodes.
Charlie Gets Crippled (8.6)
Proving that he was always going to be a valuable asset, Danny DeVito killed it in the role ever since his debut. When his wife decides to divorce him, Frank makes the big decision to give up his life of luxury to reconnect with his kids. Things start off on the right foot when he accidentally causes Dennis to run Charlie over, putting him in a wheelchair.
As Frank tries to learn more about his children’s new lives, he starts spending some time with Charlie and Mac. However, as he gets a taste of a life of squalor, he becomes hungry for the scrappy days of his youth and eventually reverts to the scheming, debaucherous man that fans know and love today.
Hundred Dollar Baby (8.8)
Frank and Kaitlin Olson’s Dee have never had a great rapport, and much of this is because Dee has been her family’s punching bag since childhood. However, after The Gang abandons Dee during a mugging, Frank takes it upon himself to teach her boxing as self-defense. Plans change, though, when Frank comes across an old, boxing rival and his daughter.
Years ago, a cheap punch cost Frank a major boxing match, and he now looks to redeem himself. After a heated exchange, he and his old rival arrange a boxing match between their daughters. This leads Frank to push Dee to become stronger, eventually pushing her to take steroids. When a series of mishaps takes Dee out of the match, Frank takes one last opportunity to avenge one of his greatest failures.
The Gang Gives Frank An Intervention (8.8)
A huge reason behind Frank joining The Gang is so that he can enjoy the indulgent, underground lifestyle of his youth that he had to abandon when he married his wife. However, when he starts to sink too low for even The Gang’s liking, they decide to arrange an intervention to fix him.
As Frank becomes increasingly drunken and starts hitting on his own family members, the rest of the group prepare their special take on an intervention, all while combatting the growing presence of the infamous “Garbage Pail Cousin,” Gail the Snail.
The Gang Gets Quarantined (8.8)
Now more than ever, people are starting to realize how terrifying quarantines can be and how dangerous any ailment can be for the elderly. Both of these concepts are on full display when The Gang tries to stay healthy for an upcoming Boyz II Men concert, and Frank tries to keep himself from catching the flu.
In his sinking paranoia, Frank starts dictating the bar more and more. He starts watching over The Gang like a hawk, controlling what foods everybody eats, and shaving every follicle of hair on his body. During a major flu outbreak, Frank proves to be a much more volatile organism.
The Gang Gets Held Hostage (8.9)
The feud between The Gang and the McPoyles really boils when the McPoyles take Paddy’s Pub hostage after a bank robbery. While the rest of The Gang is made to play a variety of games for their lives, Frank is exploring Paddy’s vents to find his will which Charlie hid long ago.
As the rest of the crew literally has to fight for their lives, Frank also finds himself increasingly strange and dangerous situations as he goes deeper into the dark labyrinth of Charlie’s territory. When Charlie catches word that Frank is trying to change his will, he sneaks off into the vents to hunt Frank down.
The Gang Gets Analyzed (9.0)
It shouldn’t be a surprise that each and every member of The Gang has their issues. When Dee needs a third-party to decide who should do the dishes after a disastrous dinner, she decides to take them to her therapist, finally creating an opportunity for a psychological professional to actually observe the group’s toxicity.
While everyone brought a world of traumatic experiences to the table, it’s Frank who revealed the most and broke down the hardest. Here, he goes into depth on his experiences going to a “nitwit school” and reflects on his tragic, first romance. In so many words, Frank got “unzipped.”
The Gang Dines Out (9.0)
While It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia looks nothing like Game of Thrones, it does have its fair share of power struggles. In “The Gang Dines Out,” a groupon coincidentally brings the entire gang to a local restaurant but as separate parties. Dennis and Mac are trying to celebrate their friendship while Frank and Charlie try to separate their years living together.
When the two groups realize that they’re all at the same restaurant, Dennis and Frank begin a passive-aggressive competition to exude power. This surprises Mac and Charlie who simply want the group to get along. Here, Frank’s ego and obsession to control a situation are at wonderful, threatening display. Also, Dee’s there.
Reynolds Vs. Reynolds: The Cereal Defense (9.0)
Despite being raised on the harsh streets of Philly, the group does try to avoid violent conflicts whenever they can and conduct their differences in a relatively civil manner. Their unique sense of fairness and values is best shown in this iconic episode.
Here, Frank accidentally crashes into Dennis’ car after he struggles to follow some pre-recorded directions from Charlie. While Dennis is justifiably upset, the only damages to his car are from a bowl of cereal that he happened to be eating while driving. The two launch a heated debate, as Dennis tries to attack Frank’s old age and incompetence whereas Frank is backed up by some surprising claims from Mac and Charlie.
A Very Sunny Christmas (9.2)
It makes sense that Frank would play the Ebenezer Scrooge of It’s Always Sunny’s Christmas special. Here, it’s revealed that Frank plays an annual prank on Dennis and Dee. Instead of actually giving them presents, Frank instead buys whatever they most wish for and keeps the items for himself. Finally having enough of Frank’s arrogance, the twins attempt to stage their version of “A Christmas Story” to teach Frank the errors of his ways.
In doing so, they enlist the help of one of Frank’s old business partners and try a convoluted way of sneaking Frank into an office, Christmas party. While these faux lessons fall on deaf ears, Frank does have an out of body experience that gets him to reflect on his life as well as pervert a stop motion classic.
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