The 12th season of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia came to a close Wednesday night, putting a cap on a season that managed to be fresh and novel (and, at times, controversial) for a show more than a decade in.
Sadly, though, something had to change eventually. If you haven’t seen the episode yet, stop reading right here because — spoiler alert — everyone’s favorite unhinged narcissist (and possible serial killer) “might be” gone when season 13 rolls around. Whenever that is.
Season 12 ended Wednesday with "Dennis' Double Life," in which Glenn Howerton’s Dennis Reynolds learns he that he fathered a child during 10th season episode “The Gang Beats Boggs.” Faced with his newfound fatherhood, Dennis says that he “can’t do any of this [expletive] anymore,” presumably meaning the Gang and all of Philly.
Howerton, who also helps produce and write the show, told Uproxx in an interview published late Wednesday that he “might be” done with It's Always Sunny, but wasn’t totally sure. The show, Howerton added, “may be” taking a hiatus between seasons 12 and 13:
"So… it’s a little complicated. I may seem a little bit evasive here, and I don’t mean to. It’s not entirely certain whether I am or am not. I might be. I might be, but I might not be. That really is the truth. Just to be clear, to dispel any potential weirdness, it has nothing to do with my relationship to anyone on the show or Rob or Charlie or anyone like that. It’s partially a creative and personal decision. We may be taking an extended hiatus between season 12 and season 13. So I’m certainly staying open to the possibility of doing more, but there is a possibility that I will not."
Howerton also told the Wrap that “the option to come back is there” and his potential leaving is “very much a creative decision.”
The reason for his possible departure became more clear following Uproxx’s interview, with NBC announcing that Howerton had been cast alongside Patton Oswalt in a sitcom pilot from Seth Meyers and SNL’s Mike O’Brien called AP Bio. Should that pilot go to series, it would likely seriously cut into Howerton’s time for It’s Always Sunny, which could explain the show’s possible hiatus.
As the A.V. Club notes, FX still has the It’s Always Sunny crew on the hook for two more seasons, but Howerton’s possible departure muddies how those seasons might move forward. As for his time on the show, Howerton told Uproxx he will look back “with a level of fondness that I can only describe as indescribable,” should he actually be leave.
“I don’t know that you can point to any other character who is as dark and twisted and rapey and murderous and have it somehow still work, and be funny and likeable,” Howerton said. “I’m just proud to create such a unique character.”