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November 08, 2018

Fans, critics rave about dance masterpiece in 'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia' finale

Television Comedy
Mac dance always sunny Source/FX Network

"It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia- creator Rob McElhenney and ballerina Kylie Shea perform a contemporary dance piece to close the show's 13th season.

Season 13 of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" wrapped up on Wednesday night with an exquisite sequence of contemporary dance, a magically earnest moment for creator Rob McElhenney and the adoring fans who never could have seen it coming.

Entitled "Mac Finds His Pride," the season finale deals with Mac's struggle to come out to his absent, imprisoned father. Revealed as a gay man at the end of the previous season, Mac is still unable to find his footing in the world.

“I don’t know where I fit in as a gay man, and it’s starting to get to me," Mac tells Danny DeVito's Frank. "I’m not feeling very proud.”

In an otherwise ruthlessly offensive comedy, the trick in Season 13 has been balancing the satire and laughs with a dose of truth about the society in which these heinous characters live. 

McElhenney, going behind the scenes with Vulture, explained that the support the show received from the LGBTQ community after last season's finale pushed him to think bigger about how to deal with Mac's sexuality moving forward.

“We got a really overwhelming emotional response from the LGBTQ community last year,” McElhenney said. “I took it seriously and I felt it would be completely unexpected to have this much more emotionally resonant end to the season."

Without spoiling the episode's narrative entirely, the video below shows the dance piece McElhenney performed with professional ballerina Kylie Shea. The accompanying music is Sigur Rós's “Varúð.”

Fans and critics of the series were absolutely floored by the finale.

The team behind "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" has said they'd like to get the show through 15 seasons, which would make it the longest-running live-action comedy in American television history.

What happened at the end of season 13 may change its course and tone forever. 

"I do not know if 'It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia' is the same show after this," wrote The A.V. Club's Dennis Perkins. "For McElhenney and Day to conclude their creation’s 13th season with such a devastatingly, unprecedentedly heartfelt and redemptive arc for one (and maybe two) of 'the worst people in the world' suggests that they have plans to take their show into another direction entirely."

For once, it rained.