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This is why It’s Always Sunny turned one of its main characters gay

Patrick Kelleher September 25, 2019
This is why It's Always Sunny turned one of its main characters gay

The cast of It's Always Sunny (Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty)

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia creator and star Rob McElhenney has explained why they decided to make his character Mac gay.

Mac came out as gay in the show’s 12th season after years of jokes about the character’s sexuality. But that wasn’t always the plan.

Speaking to Rolling Stone, McElhenney said that they started discussing the possibility of making Mac gay because of his “intense, ultraconservative, right-leaning principals”.

Rob McElhenney: ‘Let’s just make him gay.’

“We always take whatever viewpoint any character has to the extreme,” McElhenney continued.

“We were looking at Mac at one point, and I was like, ‘He is such an arch-arch Catholic conservative when it suits him, and when it doesn’t, he drops that. And most of the people I know in that camp tend to be fairly homophobic. So we began to go down that road: Let’s satirise that hard Christian conservative who is also intensely homophobic.

“That’s when I thought, ‘Let’s just make him gay.’”

He is such an arch-arch Catholic conservative when it suits him, and when it doesn’t, he drops that.

McElhenney said that the decision works “retroactively” when you look at the show’s history.

Mac will continue to be ‘an abhorrent person’ in It’s Always Sunny.

Meanwhile, in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, McElhenney said it was important to him that they didn’t change the fact that Mac is an “abhorrent person”.

“That was something we made a concerted effort on, to make sure we were servicing a very large part of our community, which is the LGBTQ community, and we wanted to make sure that we were having a character who was going to come out in a way that would feel satisfying and be in the tone of the Sunny, while also not just all of a sudden dramatically changing Mac’s character.”

He said that fans have praised the show for having an “unlikable” gay character, and for not bowing to pressure to make him more palatable now that he is openly gay.

“That is true inclusion, as opposed to saying he’s come out and now all of a sudden he’s this great guy. It doesn’t work like that. True inclusion is bring the LGBTQ down into the gutter with us.”

More: coming out, Gay, it's always sunny, mac, rob mcelhenney

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