Shameless, Season 5, Episode 2, “I’m the Liver”
Sunday, January 18, 9pm, Showtime
Every Shameless episode I’m in awe of Emmy Rossum’s performance. How she has never won any award for her efforts continuously astounds me. In a show that’s sometimes so ridiculous you could never believe the story-lines, she brings an emotional weight to it that grounds it in reality. This show has always had Fiona at the center of it, the grounded responsible sibling who started breaking apart slowly, season by season, until she completely fell apart last year.
This season has shown Fiona after a major prison scare, after almost killing Liam, and her new job, her house arrest have helped keep her grounded. She’s at a crossroads, where she can go the route of Sean (Mulroney), the older man figure who instead of going Frank’s way, picked his life up and put it back together, and now mentors those who need it, or she can go Frank’s route, the chaotic, destructive way. Because she’s the product of Monica and Frank’s DNA, of course she wants to go their way, she struggles with that decision internally, constantly. But she’s addicted to that sort of chaos, and it’s nice to see a character speaking to the audience and her calling her a chaos junkie. It’s also nice to see him struggling so hard to not give in to her advances, fighting against his urges, as she plays footsie with him at a 12 step meeting, yet choosing to sit beside her like that, and get upset when a customer doesn’t tip her and insults her. Twice in the episode she causes chaos and revels in it. It’s almost as if the ankle bracelet was grounding her emotionally and physically, and as soon as it came off, she was like a cooped up animal released from her cage, able to run wild and free again. I’d love to see Fiona really get her shit together this season, everyone is with their flaws, but she’s always had the ability to rise above her circumstances, she’s just never felt comfortable to do it.
Frank. Frank, Frank, Frank. I said last week that I have a really hard time with this story line. It’s not getting any easier. I admire the writers balls, in sticking true to the character, I admire their ability to push the envelope, and to make such an unlikable character a main part of the show. But this is 5 years in, and I’m tired of his disgusting antics. I get that as the audience, we see his actions as if the Gallagher children would, but something has gotta give. Not even Sheila or Sammie’s chubby little kid shitting in Sheila’s living room can lighten that arc for me now. Frank meets the parents of his organ donor and ruins it in Frank fashion.
Watching Ian and Mickey plot together to humiliate a man from a Westboro-esque organization was fantastic. Watching Kev piss off Vee like that.. though Svetlana is a fantastic character, and I really love any scene with her.
We’re still in the lighthearted phase of Shameless, I’m expecting things to go south by episode four.
Every Shameless episode I'm in awe of Emmy Rossum's performance.