The Gang decides to throw Charlie a surprise party for his birthday after a traumatic event involving the massacre of over 200 rats in Paddy’s Pub that leaves him overwhelmed.This episode had a few good moments, but the humor ultimately falls flat and the story fails to exceed any expectations. Despite the high quality of the previous episode and the fact that Charlie attaches a toy car with a dead raccoon, “Charlie Kelly: King of the Rats” is just another run of the mill episode for the run of the mill season.After much effort and admonishing by Frank, the Gang realizes they must stop being cynical and start doing good things for other people. Frank gives up his two spa tickets so that Dee can distract Charlie with a relaxing day while Mac and Dennis sets up the bar for a luau themed birthday surprise. Because Charlie’s response to her spa proposal was “You trying to take me for a spaghetti day or something?”, Dee opts for the more selfish approach by taking him to the movies and keeping the spa tickets for herself instead. Meanwhile, Mac shows his lack of cynicism by buying Dennis a surprise gift while shopping for decorations. Counteracting his lack of cynicism, Dennis had switched the crappy shirt Mac was going to buy for him with a much better shirt.
Mac: “I feel like you just stole money from me and you bought yourself a shirt” Dennis: “That’s exactly what happened”.
Realizing that the luau theme involved too much effort, Dennis, Dee, and Mac attempt to decipher the pictures and symbols of Charlie’s dream book to find out what to get him. Given Charlie’s lack of artistic ability and his extreme illiteracy, the best they could decipher was Denim Chicken, a bird with teeth, and the phrase “werm hat”. Trying to recreate the book as accurately as possible, they put tiny jeans on a cooked chicken, glue teeth to a stuffed bird, and make 3 different interpretations of a worm hat. What they failed to realize was that “werm hat” stood for Hans Vermat, a German guy who drives a biplane in Charlie’s dreams.
Charlie: “Did you cover bird with teeth in this fashion”Dennis: “That doesn’t exist Charlie”Charlie: “I don’t know about that…”
In the end, it’s revealed that Frank was lying about Charlie’s birthday in order to have luau for his own birthday. Just like the Gang, this reveal fell flat and I didn‘t find myself caring about this “twist“. Also disappointing was the scene involving Duncan, the man that lives under the bridge. Duncan’s character and is relation to Frank isn’t really developed and is used only to get the Gang from point A to point B. I didn’t dislike this episode, it’s just upsetting to see the few quality episodes of the season become muddle under the copious amount of mediocre ones.
Original Author: Andrew Ebanks