Charlie isn’t the brightest of characters. Actually, he’s pretty damn stupid and he has no worries about it. Dennis goes so far as to say that if Charlie rules the world then he would blow himself. It seems like the only plausible place where Charlie would be able to shake the demands of the Gang would be some kind of alternate reality. And that’s exactly where Sunny takes us in Charlie Rules the World.
Dee has become addicted to an online role-playing game where she rules over odd, misshapen caricatures of Dennis, Mac and Frank and Charlie. Fed up with being bossed around by the other guys, Charlie decides to help Dee with her role-playing game and eventually becomes hooked, teaming up with Dee to rule the virtual world.
When Mac and Frank pick up the game as well, Dennis goes on a search for his own reality, examining the plugged in world we’ve become accustomed to. He pleads for Mac and Frank to “stop getting invested in false realities,” something the Gang is notorious for, including Dennis.
In this episode, Charlie takes over, wheeling and dealing his way to the highest ranks of the game and even receiving real-life benefits. He shows a knack for being a cold-blooded leader, making few friends and many enemies in the process of dominating the online realm.
Charlie flexing his muscles isn’t something completely brand new to the series or this season. We’ve seen his diabolical side in ‘Charlie and Dee Find Love,’ so we know Charlie is capable of running the show and maybe it’s as simple an explanation as street smarts over books smarts.
But the recurring theme of Season 8 has been Dennis’ hunger for control. He hates that the Gang is absorbed in the role-playing game so he goes to the mall searching for answers to what this reality actually means. In a dream-type sequence, Dennis has a moment of enlightenment with a British version of himself. He realizes that he has the power to more or less be God and then promptly goes down on the British Dennis, possibly out of his subconscious knowing that Charlie holds all power.
In a surprising ending, nothing actually surprising happens. As the Gang squabbles over the game, Dennis enters the room and explains that he deleted all their characters because he had the power to. In not-so-Sunny fashion, there’s no big resolution here. Just like that Charlie’s reign ends, showing everyone that Dennis controls reality in Philadelphia, it’s as simple as that.
Mac’s elbow dance moves
Charlie and Dee’s virtual sex scene
Frank’s username and character: Sweetpeach69
Dennis blowing a British version of himself because he’s the only person who can handle his own vivacious eroticism