Denis Leary Denis Leary

Cheers to the Smithsonian Institution for recognizing the historic importance of Rescue Me.

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During an interview on the hilarious Chicago-based podcast The Matthew Aaron Show (on which I was also a guest last night), Peter Tolan, cocreator of FX's FDNY dramedy, revealed that the revered Washington, D.C., museum had requested Denis Leary's firefighter gear and would add it to their collection on July 14, one day after the show's seventh and final season premiere. That puts Rescue Me in its rightful place alongside such TV classics as All in the Family (represented by Archie Bunker's armchair) and Happy Days (ayyyyyy, Fonzie's jacket).

In typically self-deprecating style, Tolan joked that Tommy Gavin's getup would hang next to one of Matt LeBlanc's t-shirts from Joey. But all gags aside, Rescue Me deserves to be enshrined for its blazingly original blend of wild comedy and dead-serious drama — and for truly honoring the heroes of 9/11 by treating them as flawed, flesh-and-blood human beings. If only the TV Academy would give the show a similar degree of respect.

Are you fired up about the Smithsonian honoring Rescue Me?

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