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"Mac's Mom Burns Her House Down" is the sixth episode of the sixth season of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.


Charlie and Mac set-up a truly odd couple after Mac's mom burns the house down; Frank discovers the importance of paternal care when Dee falls ill.


12:00 PM, On a Thursday, Philadelphia, PA

At Paddy's, Dee stands behind the bar making a series of bizarre hacking noises. She explains that she has a "tickle" in her throat. Dennis and Mac react with horror and tell her that she better not make them sick. Dee responds that she can't be getting sick, because she has backstage passes for a Josh Groban concert. Dennis and Mac think she is talking about Charles Grodin, and are impressed, but Dee corrects them. Dee decides to go home to rest before the concert, and as she leaves, Frank wards her off with a pool cue so she won't get too near him.

Charlie enters, having a very animated conversation with his mother. His mother is upset because some Muslims have moved in next door, and she is convinced they are terrorists. After he hangs up, he complains that since his Uncle Jack moved out, his mom constantly calls him asking him to do things for her. Mac criticizes him for not being sufficiently devoted to his mother, but Dennis is on Charlie's side, saying he doesn't to take care of anyone when he gets older. Frank is shocked to hear this, and Dennis confirms what he just said, telling Frank that he was a terrible father to him. When Frank says that he'll just get Dee to take care of him, Dennis reminds him that he just ran her out of the bar with a pool cue.

The bar's phone rings again, and Charlie is reluctant to answer it, thinking it will be his mom with yet more "crazy shit" for him to do. Mac demands that he answer it, which he does. It's not his mom, though -- it's news that Mac's mom has burned her house down.

Mac takes his mom to his apartment. Dennis seems displeased, and asks where she'll be staying. Mac says that she'll be staying with them, but Dennis prefers Mrs. Mac's idea that she go stay in a shelter. Charlie shows up with Poppins, Mac's mom's ancient dog (who Dennis says that Mac got when he was 10). Poppins' eye starts to pop out, and Mac pops it back into place with his knuckle. Charlie's mom calls him again with yet another insane request, which gives Dennis an idea: Mac's mom should move in with Charlie's mom. Mac says it will be a Golden Girls type situation: "Couple of old ladies getting together, chasing men, eating cheesecake." Charlie likes the idea, but says it will be tough to sell his mom on it. Poppins' eye pops out yet again.

Dee is making some bizarre vegetable smoothie she got at health food store when Frank shows up, offering to take care of her. Frank says that he'll take care of her now so that she takes care of him when he gets old, which Dee refuses. Dee asks Frank to do her laundry for her.

At Charlie's mom's house, Dennis is acting as "head negotiator" to get Mrs. Mac to move in with Charlie's mom. Mrs. Kelly takes an immediate dislike to Mrs. Mac, saying that she "smells" -- which Mrs. Mac does not deny. ("I smell like shit.") Dennis suggests as a compromise that Mrs. Mac should start wearing perfume. Mrs. Kelly is also horrified by the fact that Mrs. Mac is smoking in her house: Dennis suggests she start using smokeless tobacco instead. The last sticking point is Poppins. Mrs. Kelly is terrified of dogs ("I don't want a dog to eat my face, Charlie!"), and Mac suggests that he take the dog instead. Dennis reluctantly agrees to get Mrs. Mac out of their apartment.

Frank comes back into Dee's apartment with the laundry. Frank tries to "bond" with Dee by talking about the short shorts Dee will be wearing to the Groban concert, asking if she's "raggin' it", which horrifies Dee. Dennis shows up with Poppins, who he suggests can keep Dee company while she's sick. Poppins collapses and appears to be dead, but Dennis tells Dee not to worry, he does that a lot. (He also advises she keep her self-tanner away from him, because he will eat it.)

After Dee goes back to her bedroom, Frank tells Dennis that his plan to get Dee to take care of him isn't really working. Dennis tells him his plan is all wrong: rather than help Dee get well, he needs to "thrust her into a hostile environment" where she'll need him, so Frank should take Dee to his apartment, and he should try to make her even sicker.

At Mrs. Kelly's house, Mrs. Kelly is horrified by Mrs. Mac. When Mrs. Kelly tries to talk to Charlie, he and Mac try to get her to talk to Mrs. Mac, so that they get to know each other. Mac suggests that his mom can fix a long-broken fan, which Mac hopes will make Mrs. Kelly like Mrs. Mac more, but that hope is dashed when Mrs. Mac spits a large wad of tobacco juice into some of Mrs. Kelly's porcelain. Charlie and Mac continue to try to get their moms to bond, but it seems hopeless.

At Charlie and Frank's apartment, Dee is passed out on their bed. Dennis tells Frank that he should now take care of her, which Frank doesn't want to do. Dee wakes up, completely zonked out on an overdose of NyQuil. She staggers out into the hall, where she avoids several hazards, Mr. Magoo style, until she falls down a flight of stairs.

At Mrs. Kelly's house, she is following her usual end of the day routine: she is doing some activities, like locking the door, rearranging pictures, and switching lights on and off, 3 times "so Charlie won't die." When she wakes up Mrs. Mac by switching the lights in the room where she is sleeping on and off 3 times, Mrs. Mac reacts violently and forces her out of the room. Mac and Charlie agree this is not working and Mrs. Mac should go. Charlie has also begun to do everything 3 times himself.

The next morning, Charlie and Mac bring in bagels and coffee, and discover their moms getting along well. Mrs. Mac is fixing the fan, which will allow her to smoke in the house because it will blow out the smoke. We soon see why they are getting along: they have bonded, not over cheesecake like Charlie and Mac would have hoped, but in mutual racism towards their Muslim neighbors. Charlie and Mac decide that they'll just take what they can get, and let them keep living together.

Back at Charlie and Frank's apartment, Dee is tied down to the bed. Dee demands that they untie her, but Frank wants her to promise to take care of him first. Dee sees that her face is a mess, both from the fall she took the night before, but from the bedbugs in the bed. She demands that they get Poppins off her, but Frank discovers that Poppins is "ice cold" -- it appears that he got into the juice Dee was drinking, and it's killed him. Frank and Dennis leave Dee in the apartment, tied to the bed, while they go dispose of Poppins' corpse.

Charlie and Mac are returning to Charlie's apartment, both of them now doing everything in threes. They see Dennis and Frank putting something in the trash. Mac tells them that they're going to get Poppins, and Dennis and Frank are obviously uncomfortable talking about him. When Mac demands that they tell him what's going on with Poppins, Frank admits that Poppins has died after getting into cold medicine. Mac is horrified that they just threw Poppins away without giving him a proper burial, and goes into the trash can to get him. He discovers that Poppins is fine. Poppins runs off, but Mac doesn't seem concerned, and he lets him go. They all decide to go back to Paddy's... leaving Dee tied up in the apartment, where she hears Artemis leave Frank a message implying that she needs to get down there because "Groban is feeling frisky." Dee thrashes around the bed in a fury, yelling "Groban!"


  • Charlie and Mac - team up to have their moms move in together. Charlie's mom starts calling him all the time after Uncle Jack moves out, and Mac's mom just burned her house down.
  • Dennis and Frank - team up to manipulate Dee so that she takes care of Frank when he's old and retired (so that Dennis doesn't have to).



Guest Starring[]


  • In the opening scene of this episode, Mac & Dennis confused the name of singer Josh Groban with the name of comic actor Charles Grodin.
  • In this episode, Frank starts talking about "rapes in nursing homes" to Dennis. Previously,
    (in 03x08) the same thought came from Mac (which Frank and Charlie disagreed with) when interviewing retirees at a nursing home.
  • Mac was very excited about Dennis' idea that his mom and Charlie's mom could live together - like in the NBC sitcom "The Golden Girls". Also, during their failed "trial run" of this new living arrangement, Mac & Charlie sing "Thank You for Being a Friend" - the opening theme from this series.
  • Dennis' suggestion to Frank that he should put Dee in a "hostile environment" sounds very much like something out of "the D.E.N.N.I.S. System": most specifically, the first "N" for "Nurture Dependence".
  • Frank reveals that there are bed bugs in the apartment after Dee wakes up with her face inflamed and irritated from their bites. Apparently, the infestation was not cleared up by the fumigation that kept The Gang from their World Series tickets in the episode "The World Series Defense".
  • Glenn Howerton and Josh Groban are co-stars in the independent comedy, Coffee Town.
  • Mrs. Kelly and Mrs. Mac are still living together as of Season 12; we see them together in the episode "Old Lady House: A Situation Comedy".
  • A picture of the Rhedosaurus from the 1953 movie Beast of 20,000 Fathoms can be seen on the bulletin board at Dee's house at the 10 minute mark.


Mini-Dennis Reynolds.jpg   Why don't you just check yourself into a nursing home, Frank? You have the money...
I'm not gonna put myself into one of those crypts. As soon as you drop the soap, they'll rape your butt! That's what happens! Mac told me...   Mini-Frank Reynolds.jpg
Mini-Dennis Reynolds.jpg   What? What are you- God! You people have a very strange conception of what goes on in nursing homes.



Mini-Mac.jpg   So it does seem like they're bonding, right?
Yeah... I mean, it's not really a "Golden Girls"-type conversation. It's, like, a racist conversation, but...   Mini-Charlie Kelly.jpg



Dennis: OK, ladies, I know this is a lot to digest, so that's why I'm here, to act as an unbiased negotiator in the whole process, and to sort out any problems, or concerns, and essentially to make sure that you're both comfortable with this new arrangement...
Mrs. Kelly: I don't want to live with her.
Charlie: Oh, Mom, why not?
Mrs. Kelly: She smells!
Charlie: I know she smells...
Mac: (angrily) OK, you can't talk about my mom like that! (To Mrs. Mac, in a reassuring tone of voice) You don't smell, and you look beautiful...
Dennis: OK, I think what Charlie's mom is trying to say is that Mrs. Mac has a unique, earthy fragrance.
Mrs. Mac: I smell like shit!
Mac: Oh, Mom, don't put yourself down, we talked about this...
Charlie: Maybe we could get Mrs. Mac some perfume...
Dennis: That's not a bad idea... Mrs. Mac, what do you say? What better way to kick off this new relationship than with a new fragrance?
Mrs. Mac: Stop talking to me like I'm an asshole!
Season 6 Episodes
  1. "Mac Fights Gay Marriage"
2. "Dennis Gets Divorced"
3. "The Gang Buys a Boat"
4. "Mac's Big Break"
5. "Mac and Charlie: White Trash"
6. "Mac's Mom Burns Her House Down"
7. "Who Got Dee Pregnant?"
 8. "The Gang Gets a New Member"
 9. "Dee Reynolds: Shaping America's Youth"
10. "Charlie Kelly: King of the Rats"
11. "The Gang Gets Stranded in the Woods"
12. "Dee Gives Birth"