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Monday, February 6, 2012

Shameless - Father's Day

You guys like your Shameless don’t you? We were checking out the blog stats, which tell us which show gets read about the most. Earlier, Pretty Little Liars fans were the Kings and Queens of this blog (ok, mostly queens), but the Shameless fans overtook them in numbers last week when we decided to do a full post on last episode. We hear you guys and will deliver more Shameless coverage. Of course, the PLL fans leave more comments… (And, just so you know, Glee comes in third and New Girl fourth. Southland is fifth. Weird.)

It seems like Shameless gets funnier and more twisted every week. There really isn’t a character we dislike, except for maybe Karen, because she is hurting Lip and she’s so batshit fracking insane. What personality disorder IS that? Sociopath with a side of super-slut? We don’t get her. She’s funny though, so we’d keep her on the show. It’s not like she’s Jenny Schecter on The L-Word or anything. Karen has a ways to go before she tops THAT Showtime psycho. Our favorite character this week was Malik. Frank has been a lot more hilarious this year. Last year, the show was best when Frank was offscreen. The only downside to us right now is that there is way too much going on in every episode.

There are so many characters, each with their own messed-up storyline and problems. Instead of focusing on three people per episode, the show gives everyone their time each hour. This might make for a fast-moving show that feels eventful every week, but it makes this show a pain in the rear to recap and review. Maybe we should grade the storylines as well as the episodes….Sounds like a plan, man.

Carl’s story: A for humor. Carl finds a way to make money for the family. He rents out Frank’s room to a prostitute, after the pregnant Asian moves out. The hooker pays $75 a week, and Fiona is shocked and disgusted that she is around. The prostitute asks Fiona for Vagisil, because she’s been “scratching under the hood” all night. This prompts Fiona to seek out a little class when the opportunity arises. Fiona gets a call from Richard, the sugar daddy Jasmine set her up with. Fiona agrees to accompany Richard to an old friend’s wedding, so that he can have a pretty date.

Richard is turning out not to be a shallow jerk after only sex and Fiona is turning out to not be a gold digger. They are defying the stereotype even as they resemble it. Fiona makes it clear that Richard should expect sex and tells him to pick her up on Lake Shore Drive, a nice area, so that Richard doesn’t see her real neighborhood. She is still posing as a Princeton student home for the summer. At the wedding, Richard’s friend catches her in a lie about Princeton. The friend decides that Fiona is an escort. When she denies it, the friend decides that Fiona is a gold-digger. He says that he will tell Richard about the Princeton lie unless Fiona “gives him a taste.” At the soonest opportunity, and in front of the friend, Fiona tells Richard that she never went to college and storms out of the wedding reception.

This is why we love Fiona. She has her trashy moments (see: the last two weeks), but she isn’t your run-of-the-mill trash. And she has balls. Richard follows Fiona out, tells her that he knew she wasn’t a Princeton student, and offers to drive her to her real home. When Richard drops Fiona off at her house, he tells her that it reminds him of the house he grew up in. So Richard wasn’t always wealthy… Then he asks Fiona to dinner and she accepts. Richard offers Fiona the diamond necklace he rented for her to wear to the wedding, but Fiona refuses it, saying she’d just sell it for toilet paper and food anyway.

As Richard drives away, Fiona sees Steve coming down the steps of Tony’s house, covered in a whole lotta beard. Steve notices Richard driving away. He asks where Tony is. Both Fiona and Steve look miserable. Steve tells Fiona she looks good. She does. Fiona cleans up better than anyone we’ve ever seen and she’s already good-looking to begin with. Anyway…YES! Steve is back. We love him unreservedly. We hope he has stopped stealing cars though. He’s too smart for that. Things are about to get interesting in Fiona’s life and we welcome this little triangle. Fiona’s story: A for romance.

Lip is devastated by the whole Karen thing. The family wonders if he has PTSD after being beaten by Karen. Ha. Fiona explains to Lip that the baby is most probably his, but lots of people are wondering if it’s Frank’s, even though it seems like she would be further along by now if it were Frank’s, frankly. Lip tells Frank about the baby and Frank responds with, “It’s only a matter of time before the whole country is Mexicans and Gallaghers.” Then he advises Lip to split. It wasn’t Lip’s fault that Karen wasn’t careful, after all, and “neglect fosters self-reliance.” That’s right. According to Frank, it’s child abuse NOT to neglect your kids. He’s teaching his kids to fish.  

Lip realizes that he should do the exact opposite of what Frank does and advises. He visits Karen to man up and ask about the baby. Karen tells Lip that the baby is a girl (yes, that’s what that garbled outburst of cursing meant) and that she and Jody eloped recently. The war hero Colonel from the Department of Defense comes to the Gallagher home and personally delivers a West Point application to Ian, with a promise to write a slammin’ recommendation letter. The bad news? The application and recommendation are for Lip, whose mind impressed the Colonel.

Ian is upset. He confronts Lip and tells him that he doesn’t want Lip’s help anymore. Then Ian hits below the belt, asking Lip if Karen’s baby is Lip’s son or his brother. The two get into a physical altercation that Ian wins, because Ian is in better shape from all the running and pushups he does. Later, at a party, Lip picks a fight with some ‘roid rager and loses. He doesn’t give the meathead much of a fight, showing that Lip is full of self-loathing and depression right now. Lip’s story: A for tragedy. Ian’s story: C+ for Ian getting mad at Lip for trying to help him and not really doing anything wrong.

Sheila is hiding in her bedroom when the police show up to her house and say that they found Eddy in a lake. Because of the cement block tied to his legs, the police suspect that Eddy was murdered. Frank takes this opportunity to try to steal Eddy’s pension during this time of grief. The police think Frank killed Eddy. They find the tape of Karen banging Frank and arrest Frank for statutory rape. Frank was released when Karen told the police that Frank was too messed-up to do any raping and that it was she who took advantage of him. Sheila’s story: B-. Don’t marry Frank, Sheila.

Karen saved Frank out of gratitude; she thinks Frank killed her father, who she hates even in death. In the credits, Karen squats over Eddy’s grave and pisses on it. Why is she procreating? Jody is dumb as a rock. Lip calls him “Keanu.” Clearly, Lip needs to raise this baby, even if they have to live on the streets. It’s better than Karen in Sheila’s basement. That will create one awful little girl. Karen’s story: A+. We love her craziness. The pee was just beyond wrong.

Ethel is still hanging out with Malik. The name Malik reminds us of the name “Malak,” which was the name of a Sith Lord in Ern’s favorite video game. Obviously, it was a Star Wars game. We can’t take this name seriously. Ethel tells Malik about how her sister wives held her down and forced her to sleep with her old, nasty husband, Clyde. She said it felt like knives. Malik is really sweet about it. Ethel confesses to Malik that she is worrying about Clyde’s welfare, because he won’t be properly cared for in prison. Malik tells Ethel that he had his relative “take care of Clyde.” What does that mean? It looks like Malik’s relative cut Clyde’s penis in the prison shower. Ha! Criminals don’t like child molesters any more than anyone else does and always step up when it’s time to give them what’s due. Nice job, Malik. Ethel is daft and brainwashed and needs to be taken care of by you. Ethel and Malik’s story: B, not A, because it kind of horrified us, even though we loved it.

Vanessa suspects Kevin of cheating when she finds a badly written Valentine in his pocket. When V is wronged, she doesn’t take that sitting down. She plots her revenge and quickly goes about getting it. She realizes, just before she is about to attack the woman she suspects of sleeping with Kevin, that he is being tutored in reading and writing, because he is next to “unliterate.” He wrote that Valentine for V. All is well in the home of the violent couple with the surprisingly good relationship for how dumb, poor, sometimes criminal, and trashy they are. Vanessa and Kevin’s story: B- for making V look like such a jerk.

Debbie is still after Little Hank, oblivious to the fact that she is both too good for him and too cute for him. Carl tells her some of Little Hank’s interests: drugs and weapons. Debbie covers herself in Fiona’s makeup and jewelry. She looks like a pretty little clown. Fiona tells Debbie to stop it, saying, “Hymen stays intact.” A good rule for any 11-year-old, we say. After Holly mocks Debbie’s makeup job, Debbie gets a better one from Mandy. Debbie is still too young to look good with makeup, but Mandy’s makeup job looks decent. Mandy tells Debbie not to try to grow up too fast.

Later, Little Hank gets sick from drinking too much beer (children just cannot handle their liquor) and gives Debbie flowers that Holly would not accept. Debbie looks pleased. We are depressed by this and hope that Debbie starts liking that little nerd who likes her. It’s better than the 11-year-old version of Frank. Debbie’s story: A- for being realistic. Girls with daddy issues always go after their daddies. We want to give it an F for being depressing and beneath Debbie though. Deb is really trying to grow up this year. She wants her own room, she has a crush, she’s stressed over all her responsibilities, and she faced down death, sort of. We hope she comes out the other side alright.

Episode grade: A-


  1. Yaay, love Shameless review. Keep'em coming!!

  2. Aaah I really like Lip, I'm hoping that unlike Frank having a kid will bring out the best in him. Despite all his dysfunctions (I especially hate how cruel he can be to Karen) I think Lip is one of the best-hearted Gallaghers and although he will probably always be dysfunctional to some degree, I'm hoping he can get it together enough to be a good father despite his flaws.

    Anyway, great episode, had some really awesome other moments like when Ethel and Malik are shown hanging out and sharing ice cream and you can see they're really starting to like each other...the way the actors use expressions and body language is masterful and the song ("Canadian Thanksgiving" by Graham Wright) really adds to the vibe, too - this show is always featuring great music.

    Speaking of music, I loved the song so much during the part where the cops catch up with Frank and ask him about the sex tape they found of him and Karen that I had to look it up (it's "Beacon" by Fellow Bohemian) I am ALWAYS getting in to new music because of this show.

    1. Good call noticing the music and sharing the song titles.

      Agree about Lip, although we are never too bothered when he's mean to Karen. She dishes it out enough. He'd be a good dad, but we still hope she doesn't have a baby. We rarely root for an abortion, but it's necessary here. Maybe she's lying about being pregnant?