You guys know the drill. Shameless is fantastic, the only show that portrays poverty accurately, and deserves significantly more love than it gets. But there’s a specific thread running through the show that you can’t really find anywhere else. Namely: everything is fucked. Things might become slightly less terrible over time, but mostly it’s about the day-to-day ins-and-outs of existing and persisting in a world that seems almost actively against you, and not letting the bastards get you down. Having said that, clearly the Gallaghers play a role in how bad things get. Who’s doing the best job of keeping the fuckedness at bay?
From Least To Most Fucked-Up:
Liam Maybe? Is He Still Around?
I think maybe he’s helping Frank with his t-shirt business? And possibly still going to the fancy school with the super rich friends? Which, I have to say, despite the previous coke run-in, might put Liam miles past the rest of his siblings. The education isn’t nearly as important as the mere exposure to people who are expected to successfully finish school, and start real careers. Which in turn means leaving poverty behind won’t be nearly as hard for Liam as for his older brother. Godspeed, Liam.
Bear in mind, this is selective and not cumulative. If it were, the list would be eight entries of Frank each week. But for this week alone, Frank started thinking about his future, produced a seemingly legal (though not entirely ethical) product, and didn’t directly harm any of his children. Or in Frank-adjusted terms, a week where he was Christlike. Prepare for the inevitable relapse.
Speaking of relapse, Lip didn’t. When faced with the untimely (sort of) death of his mentor and stand-in father-figure, and the realization that Lip wasn’t nearly as special to Younes as Younes was to Lip (which according to Head Overlord Dustin spilt all of his guts onto the floor), Lip managed not to drink. He might have taken it out on the bike he was supposed to be restoring, but I feel like that might be not that big of a deal. Since his former sponsor and other stand-in father-figure gave Lip the motorcycle in order to help him work through his recovery. Also I’ve just cited two dudes who bailed on Lip after he formed a relationship with them in order to replace his own absentee father, so literally any week the kid’s not drinking is a win.
Ever since Debbie welded a dumpster to that asshole’s sports car in that parking garage, I’ve hated her substantially less. She’s made repairs to her relationship with Frannie’s grandmother in order to secure reliable childcare, she’s furthering her career, and, god bless her, she even managed to come around on the “not having babies when you’re completely incapable of raising them” thing. I could come down on her harder for working in such sketchy circumstances, especially given how terribly this is going to affect her training and therefore ability to pay the bills, but I feel like the broken foot might be punishment enough. She could always try to sue the business that hired her to cover the medical costs, but then she’d have to worry that the owner is anything like her older sister.
Because while Fiona fucked up a little bit (she knew she was being taken advantage of and didn’t do anything about it), I have a distinct feeling Fiona won’t be fucking up in the next week. Also I can’t see how this lawsuit isn’t garbage on its face. If anyone has a working knowledge of business law in Illinois, please feel free to correct me in the comments, but to the best of my knowledge (one business law class taken two years ago), Fiona wouldn’t have any liability to those asshole squatters unless she knowingly put them in a dangerous situation on her roof. And since she’d hired the roofer to fix the roof, and the roofer hired the squatter to help him, I think Fiona’s in the clear. But I’m also pretty sure she’ll be more careful about who she helps and hires in the future.
I don’t know for sure yet what Ian is fucking up, but I know for sure that he is. Has the guy ever gone to church? Did he ever talk about Jesus? I get wanting to be involved because of the way some churches treat the LGBTQ community, but why start preaching yourself, Ian? You’re clearly apprehensive about doing it, you’re very much fucking up your relationship with Trevor (who I’ll remind you is the entire reason you’re interested in helping persecuted LGBTQ teens in the first place), and you can already tell it’s getting larger than you’re comfortable with. WHY ARE YOU STILL PREACHING THE GOOD DIRTY WORD?
Kev and V
This one is an inadvertent fuck up, but one that’s so big I can’t understand how it’s been missed. Kev and V are trying to help Svetlana land a rich, older (as close to death as possible, please) husband. In a weird way, it does show they care about her. Maybe their truple-dom didn’t work out, but despite everything, they want Svetlana to find happiness. Even if that does mean roping in a wealthy octogenarian. BUT WHY IN GOD’S NAME AREN’T YOU A DOMINATRIX YET, LANA? Hey V? Remember when you realized that the thing that really attracted you to Svetlana was how well she dominated you? Do you think there might be some other, wealthier people out there who’d be interested in the same thing? (Spoiler alert: there super are.) And if Lana wants to, she can still get married to an older, rich, nearly dead dude. But she could also be making bank by bossing around some of those rich jags who work at the Board of Trade instead of the local liquor distributor. Seriously, how could you guys miss this.
I mean, GODDAMNIT CARL. What are you doing? And I’m not even talking about the fake marriage thing, because that’s not legally binding. I mean, your fiancée cut up all of your uniforms to prevent you from returning to school, and then pretended to hang herself to test your love for her. ON YOUR WEDDING DAY. What? Carl, that’s abuse. You’re being abused. You know you’re being abused because you know how goddamn awful she can be. Everyone in your family told you not to marry her except for Frank. AND YOU LISTENED TO FRANK? BECAUSE SHE’S HOT? Other girls will love you. Once you’re a goddamn grown-up who’s finished school. Who do you know in your life who married their super hot, super crazy girlfriend when they were still too young? Was it Frank? Did that turn out great for him?! It gets just to the point where you’re being willfully ignorant to all of the facts laid out … It’s like you refuse to learn anything from the mistakes that your parents and older siblings have … You’ve got a real chance to get yourself out of the …
Let’s hope you do better next week, Carl. My heart can’t take it.