“Charlie work” as the gang calls it, has been a part of the show for almost the whole run. It’s the dirty work, the work no one else wants to do, and Charlie does it while taking a great amount of pride in it. This week, the health inspector makes a surprise visit, and we learn that it’s Charlie work to pass the bar.
*Full Spoilers Ahead*
It turns out that it all falls on Charlie, and none of the gang cares if they pass or fail, stating they always seem to pass. Well, they only pass because of Charlie, not that any of them care enough to notice. When he comes in, he releases the group is fully involved in one of their schemes. They won’t tell him, but after running up frequent flyer miles while breaking Wade Boggs record, they cash those in for 400 frozen steaks, planning to contaminate the steaks with chickens and then return the steaks for cash. While Charlie’s trying to clean all this up, he must deal with everyone at their best (or worse).
Fighting over who thought of the scheme first, Dennis scratches Mac while demanding he looks at him while he speaks to him. A truck driver from Ohio comes to deliver the steaks to what he thought was a steakhouse. He also wants to eat a meal and it inspires Mac and Dennis to put up this sign against Charlie’s wishes.
Frank has flushed his shoes, and eventually his shirt down the toilet due to anxiety. This all leads Charlie to gather everyone and quickly figure out their plot in a genius way. He starts giving orders and hiding the harebrained scheme. The health inspector arrives, and what follows with her is a continuos single tracking shot, with Jazz drums, leading you to think this episode may have been inspired by last year’s movie “Birdman.”
“This was months before ‘Birdman’ came out,” Glenn Howerton (Dennis) said. This shot that lasted almost the whole episode was inspired by “True Detective,” and its now famous tracking shot, called a oner. The other reference is when Dennis gives a horrible impression of Matthew McConaughey’s famous alright, alright, alright line to the health inspector as a friendly bar tender.
As the inspector continues her work, Charlie scrambles and makes sure she has her backed turned whenever they need movement in the bar. The entire time he slams a bar stool every time he passes by it. From there he deals with an incredible series of tasks to make the bar seem decent. It all culminates when Frank, who has painted a shirt on himself, blows a whistle to sound like a carbon monoxide detector. The bar gets a passing grade and Charlie feels like a hero.
… that is until the gang says they don’t care, stating that they always pass inspections. Then Dee sits on the bar stool, with it breaking and everyone laughing at the prank. Dennis then takes credit, saying he planned that, and Charlie says it’s unbelievable before the episode ends.