The Ongoing Stereotype That Inspired It's Always Sunny's Rock, Flag, And Eagle Song


"It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" has brought many unforgettable moments over its 12 seasons, but some of its greatest musical numbers stand out among all others. Dee's rapping boyfriend was especially memorable; Dennis and Mac's glam rock band was great fun as was their animated musical number during Season 4 Christmas special and, of course, there was "The Nightman Cometh." Also noteworthy among its musical numbers was Dee's rendition of Rock, Flag, and Eagle; one song which has become one of its signature tunes in "Sunny", an iconic patriotic song known to many viewers is Dee's rendition - "Rock, Flag, and Eagle".

Song was initially an internal joke between co-creator Charlie Day (he plays himself), who stars as himself, and actor/writer David Hornsby, who portrays Rickety Cricket recurring character on the series.

"Hornsby and I used to make jokes about truck commercials at that time; at that point in time it seemed as though they were pumping out stereotypical American things in commercials," explained Day while discussing its origin on an episode of "Always Sunny Podcast." It would go something like: Eagles and Rocks and Flags with big trucks driving away kicking asses or whatever; so the song came about organically from there by picking out its theme as Day says above: just grabbing that riff that resonated so deeply within him in his head! So this song came about. Just took its inspiration from there... that and grabbed that riff in my head to write."

Day first sang this tune during season 2 episode "Charlie Goes America All Over Everyone's Ass." In it, Day and Mac attempt to express their patriotism by adopting an "anything goes" policy at their bar; however, their plan soon backfires when Frank allows a group of Vietnamese gamblers into their basement and set up shop there.

Truck commercials featuring excessively patriotic elements.

Rock, Flag and Eagle" was Day and Hornsby's debut collaboration for the series; but their musical talents soon proved more than sufficient as part of "Nightman Cometh", performed first during season 3. Rob McElhenney revealed Dayman's story to Entertainment Weekly back in 2008.

"When planning the episode featuring a band, our first question was, 'What kind of music does this band play?' Our writers collaborated in writing lyrics featuring Charlie as "Dayman: Fighter of Nightman and Champion of Sun, Master of Karate and Friendship with All.' Glenn Howerton contributed his musical skills for music along with David Hornsby who plays Rickety Cricket - his suggestion being adding in Flash Gordon-style voiceover 'Flash... Ah-ahhhhhh!" which Dennis Howerton took inspiration from to create his "Dayman... Ah-ahhhhhh!"""

Hornsby and Day first crossed paths when both appeared in "Johnny on a Spot." Day later joined his "Good Girls" co-star Hornsby to assist the "Sunny" creators shoot its pilot episode; however he didn't join until season 2.

Hornsby once shared on the "Always Sunny Podcast," that Charlie asked him whether or not they wanted to appear in one of their episodes and offered up season one as an audition spot; saying there would not be enough material there [...] so would like something bigger instead. When presented with this opportunity he replied by saying, 'Eh yeah... let me wait until then."

Day eventually offered Hornsby the role of Rickety Cricket, originally an unrequited priest with feelings for Sweet Dee that eventually devolved into being homeless burn victim and chronic drug addict - through all these stages, his character has become an indispensable one in the series.

David Hornsby and Mary Elizabeth Ellis collaborated with Day on writing "Don't Waste Time".

Day and Hornsby weren't the only members of "Sunny" who contributed to creating "Rock, Flag, and Eagle". Co-star Mary Elizabeth Ellis -- Day's real-life wife as well -- contributed greatly to creating its running gag that led to its creation.

Day recalled in an episode of the "Always Sunny Podcast" how Mary Elizabeth Ellis often joked they could take it one step further by having Jesus carry his cross and then throwing it onto a truck to ride uphill; Mary Elizabeth Ellis then joked it was Jesus driving Ford! So Day gave credit to Mary Elizabeth Ellis for this idea!

"Jesus Drives a Ford" may not make the final cut as an official verse in "Rock, Flag and Eagle", yet its influence can still be felt through lines like: "going up a mountain" and "gonna rule this world".

Howerton and McElhenney found the song so amusing they found it impossible to continue acting while reacting in character to it without laughing too hard and breaking character.

Howerton confirmed her suspicion by noting, as noted by McElhenney, that they both laughed throughout. As the showrunner noted, this could explain why neither one is visible until after Day left the scene -- "because we were laughing through all of it".

Does Truck Commercials Really Sound Like "Rock, Flag and Eagle" mes So do truck commercials really resemble "Rock, Flag and Eagle"? Well of course they do - otherwise the song wouldn't be funny! Truck ads feature security and freedom as two central American values; thus emphasizing conservative American values such as security and freedom through trucks. Regardless of whether or not you agree with subtextual politics of car commercials or their subliminally political undertones, their attempts at assigning patriotism to an inanimate object makes advertising absurd enough that even casual viewers laugh. And "Rock Flag and Eagle" just happens to make me laugh every time!

Day is an incredible comedian who knows exactly how to poke fun without condemning anything he finds humorous or absurd, such as car commercials. Simply because he, Hornsby and Ellis found something ridiculous about these commercials that made them comedic doesn't mean they were poking fun at people who take these commercials seriously; rather it represents patriotism's awesome power while remaining humorous; "Rock, Flag and Eagle" captures both aspects of it beautifully with imagery both hilarious and heartwarming; flying an eagle? Wow... It sounds incredible... Long story short though Day succeeded in mocking truck commercials through its song it also made me yearn for one myself! Go figure.

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