Neither Michael, John, or Jonathan have written for Always Sunny.
We all have our "style", so you assume with Day being a lead in Bosses there will be some unavoidable similarities to his character in It's Always Sunny. It's the same with Jason Bateman. He's known for his passive-aggressive, beat-around-the-bush-ing, politically correct characters. Each of his characters is nuanced, but they're not too far from Arrested Development's Michael Bluth. We don't complain about this. Yeah, Daniel Day Lewis as "The Butcher" is very similar to DDL as "Daniel Plainview" but both are awesome, so it's okay. You don't hate when you're favorite musician releases a new album.
(Unless, of course, you're favorite band releases an album that isn't nuanced enough and sounds exactly the same as before. Or the next album is a huge deviation. Linkin Park still gets flack for how their sound has changed. Where as Nickelback is mocked because they recycle tracks.)
Day being similar in Bosses and Sunny is fine. It's the parallels between Horrible Bosses and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia that are weird.
director: Seth Gordon
three blind mice: Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis, Charlie Day
novelties: Kevin Spacey, Colin Farrell, Jennifer Aniston, Jamie Foxx
hey!: John Francis Daley
good to see you: Donald Sutherland, Julie Bowen
who I feel like I should include for no reason: Lindsay Sloane
the first episode of the first season of It's Always Sunny is called "The Gang Gets Racist". Charlie (played by Charlie Day) and Mac decide they should have more black friends, so go to a local college. Mac walks up to a group of black students playing dominoes and says, as one player is trash-talking his opponent, "absolutely," and claps the kid on the back. The game stops. All the students look at Mac, and Mac turns around and hurries away. A motif of the episode is Mac saying the wrong, usually racist thing to black people.
In Bosses the main guys, Sudeikis, Day, and Bateman, go to a bar in a bad neighborhood hoping to find an assassin. They enter an all black bar (which is why you'll hear people cite this movie as racist) and proceed to the counter. Sudeikis starts the conversation by saying "My man", like Denzel does, and it's all downhill from there. The bartender is pissed. Sudeikis tries to recover, but says more racist things and the guys are forced to flee.
Always Sunny, season 3, episode 10, "Mac is a Serial Killer". The first scene is Charlie telling some of the gang about an episode of Law & Order and how he, Charlie, would be such a better lawyer than Sam Waterson. The rest of the episode revolves around the gang wondering if Mac is a serial killer. Charlie becomes Mac's "lawyer" and spends his time defending Mac (via lingo). Since this episode, Charlie having lawyerly tendencies is a recurring aspect of the character.
In Bosses, Charlie talks about how much he and his fiance watch Law & Order. Later, the police have brought the guys in for questioning regarding a murder (though it seemed as if they were being arrested). The cops have started to grill the guys and the guys are beginning to crack. One of the cop says they better answer soon or else they'll be there all night. Charlie speaks up. Relying on his L&O based judicial knowledge, Charlie asks if they're under arrest or in for questioning. The cops respond "for questioning" and Charlie says that the 4th amendment states they cannot be held against their will and are free to leave whenever they want. Boom, lawyered.
Always Sunny, season 3, episode 13. The gang owes the mob money. Events play out and Charlie and Dee are attempting to sell cocaine, on the sidewalk, in broad daylight, to wealthy business people to raise the funds. Everyone moves by the two before either of them can make a pitch. "These people are revved up," Dee says. "We're stuck in first gear," says Charlie. So Charlie and Dee have a little coke. The duo start to talk faster, start to describe their symptoms, then see someone they know and verbally ATTACK him with fast-paced dialogue.
Bosses: The guys break into a house. Charlie picks up a bowl of cocaine. He and Bateman marvel over the amount. Of course, Charlie drops the bowl. A white, cocaine-y cloud engulfs the two. As they scramble to get the coke from the floor back into the bowl, it's obvious they're feeling the drug's effects. They start to talk faster, start describing how they're feeling, how good they're feeling. When Sudeikis enters the room, Charlie talks 430248302 miles a minute at him.
IASP. Often, Mac and Dennis engage in power struggles. S1xE6, the two compete to see who can sleep with the granddaughter of the old man that died in their bar. At the same time, they're usually on the same page. The dynamic is funny because while they generally start out together they end up undermining one another. This is standard interaction between all 5 of the main IASP characters (they're very selfish). Some point during the argument or episode, the two arguing will ask a third person's opinion (which is honest and blunt, typically insulting).
Bosses: I won't ruin the conversation. But a conversation takes place between Sudeikis and Bateman while they're sitting in a car. It starts out fine. Then it turns humorously competitive (because it's not something two men usually compete over). When Charlie gets in the car, they ask Charlie for his opinion. His answer is complimenting to one, insulting to the other.
IASP, season 4, episode 2. Mac: "Look, every great crew in history has followed that basic dynamic. Right? Looks [gestures at Dennis]. Brains [gestures at himself]. Wild card [gestures at Charlie]. Think about it. The A-Team did it. Scooby-Doo did it. The Ghostbusters did it."
Bosses: There's not a similar declarative speech, but Bateman is the brains. Sudeikis is the looks. And Charlie is the wild card.
IASP: the gang's recurring "friends" include a former priest turned eccentric, Dee (the gang's female component)-obsessed homeless person; two brothers and their sister who love milk and incest; and a wannabe actress who has zero standards and is down for any activity.
Bosses: their one friend is a former Lehman Brothers employee who now gives hand-jobs for money.
(neither group surrounds themselves with...uh...well...people that are less-than-disgusting).
IASP: the gang never solves their own problems. This is because they're incapable. If it's a minor problem--like Dee trying to determine whether or not her boyfriend (who she really likes) is mentally retarded--the worst case scenario happens (he's not, but he's mad she thought he was and breaks up with her). If it's a major problem--like Mac's dad has just gotten out of prison and is going to kill Mac and Charlie for sending him to prison--the problem usually resolves itself (Mac's dad doesn't actually want to kill them). Only twice has one of them stepped up: when the bar was going to be bought by an Israeli businessman, Frank pays him off; when the gang owed the mob money, Dennis sold Frank's pimp chalice for the cash. Keep in mind, in both situations the gang repeatedly failed to solve the problem and were on the brink of total capitulation (the bar was almost closed; they were almost killed).
Bosses: Every time the guys have a plan, they can't execute it. They're their own worst enemies. Chickening out. Dropping cocaine. Disappearing. Saying the wrong thing. What can backfire usually backfires. The only exceptions are Bateman being able to skip out of work and Charlie, at the very end, dealing with his boss.
Cut the IASP crew from five to three (remove Frank and Dee). Substitute Sudeikis for Mac (and switch Mac from "brains" to "looks"), Bateman for Dennis (now "brains" instead of "looks"). Charlie remains as Charlie (still the "wildcard"). Have the tone from IASP season 1 (because the characters achieve greater and greater degrees of severity and selfishness as the seasons progress; in the first season, they're almost regular people) and I think Horrible Bosses could be It's Always Sunny: the Movie.
Which surprises me. It would make sense if Charlie Day had a writing credit or producing credit...But since he doesn't....
Maybe the writers unwittingly constructed a film very similar to IASP?
Gordon gave the actors plenty of room to improv, so maybe since Sudeikis has been on IASP he and Charlie fell into the show's rhythm and that's what we're seeing?
Maybe Day did provide input on the script but simply wasn't given the recognition?
Whatever the reason, in the end, Horrible Bosses owes much to It's Always Sunny.
Did I Like It:
Yes. In the parking lot, after the movie ended, a woman and her son were still laughing, saying it was better than The Hangover. I wouldn't say that. I laughed harder at Bridesmaids. It's less satirical and more comedic than Bad Teacher. I think Sudeikis looks more comfortable in HB than in Hall Pass and is funnier.
There are a ton of references to other movies. The most obvious being Pulp Fiction. They're almost like easter eggs. I'm waiting for someone to make a post citing all the references.
When they're talking with Jamie Foxx's character and they're getting frustrated with him, how they say his name cracked me up.