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It’s Always Sunny season 14, episode 9 recap: A Woman’s Right to Chop

Episode 9 of season 14 of FX series It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia deals with undesirable women’s hairstyles and yes, you guessed it, abortion.

This It’s Always Sunny episode begins like most, with the gang expressing some obnoxious opinion. Specifically, short-haired women are unattractive to Charlie (Charlie Day), Dennis (Glenn Howerton) and Frank (Danny DeVito). In fact, they’re so offended that they feel they should do something about it.

In addition to that, Mac (Rob McElhenney) is reunited with his dog, Poppins, which becomes a matter of gender discussion. The guys admire Poppins because he comes and goes as he pleases, which they view as part of a traditional role for men. Clinging to their views on tradition, they reject short haircuts as an untraditional look for women, saying they find the look ugly.

However, the plot thickens when reality steps in. Poppins is getting old, for one thing, and is unresponsive to an air horn. In other words, Poppins’ behavior likely has more to do with age than gender. In fact, Poppins may have dementia.

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As if to emphasize this. the veterinarian (Andree Vermeulen) notes that Poppins is pregnant. Mac wants to reject this idea but keeps getting his preconceptions shattered, especially when the vet says Poppins most likely won’t survive delivery. Back at the bar, Mac also shifts his view on abortion, saying flat-out that they should kill the babies to save his aging dog.

Being proactively regressive

Dennis and Frank head out, handing out “Just say no to short hair” fliers. However, Dee Reynolds (Kaitlin Olson) wants to rebel against their view by getting an offensive cut. Dennis, however, doubles down on his hysteria, saying men should have say in women’s hairstyles. In fact, Dennis goes so far as to badger the local salon owner, Sara (Lilan Bowden), about the short haircuts. However, he gets thrown off by her tears, not knowing how to respond to her emotions.

Awkwardly, he says he can get aroused by tears but just wasn’t expecting them. In other words, he wasn’t expecting a three-dimensional person who is more than his biased perception. Dennis then tries to schedule a haircut, thinking she will discriminate against him. He also says he has a right to prevent Dee’s haircut, but his awkwardness gets sidelined because the salon owner’s dog is lost.

The dog abortion

It’s Always Sunny ties all these themes together pretty well. As Dennis was out being a goofball, Mac and Charlie can’t find a dog abortion doctor. However, a catfood-eating Frank says he knows someone who can do it. He arranges for Mac and Charlie to meet Z (Chad L. Coleman), who they’ve known from previous episodes. Z says he’s a doctor at first, but he’s actually just a dog breeder/dogfighter. He wants to use an Allen wrench to do the job. There’s a complication, however, when they see another dog who may be the real Poppins!

Dee’s cut doesn’t cut it

As the episode wraps up, Dee’s haircut is even worse than expected. In fact, even Dee is distressed by it, leading the agree with Dennis that she never should have got a “back-alley chop.” Some women will always make such decisions, regardless of what men (or even other women) think. That being so, they might as well be able to make their decision safely in a professional setting. Additionally, and in true It’s Always Sunny fashion, the guys admit that they don’t really care that much about the issue anyway. To help remedy Dee’s regrettable cut, Z gives her a realistic wig.

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There’s another silly moment in the episode, too. Frank recalls a time when he shaved his head and it never fully grew back.  He had donated his hair to someone who now works as a car salesman (Phil Idrissi). He obviously feels sentimental about it, making Frank an even more complex character than before. While the gang of It’s Always Sunny would be genuinely bad people, it’s sometimes these weird, humanizing moments that add dimension and weight to the series.

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