The countdown to Emmy Rossum’s final Shameless episode continues, and her character’s downward spiral has been both boozy and depressing for the past handful of episodes. However, this week’s “Los Diablos!” installment lightens matters up a lot. Even though Fiona gets arrested by episode’s end, the sheer chaotic nature of the episode’s last 10 minutes makes up for the depressing tone we’ve witnessed for the past month of the long-running Showtime series.
Let’s talk about the madness that went down in the last 10 minutes, which made it almost impossible to rate who’s most dysfunctional during this episode. Other than the two characters we’ll talk about later, most of the Gallaghers are currently tied as far as behavior goes, so let’s lump Ingrid, Debbie, and Fiona into one unholy trinity:
– Ingrid, who’s still pregnant with six of Frank’s babies (they’re biologically Carl’s, but only Frank knows this), suddenly realizes that Frank will probably be a deadbeat dad to her kids. Amid her distress, Ingrid’s doctor arrives at the house and threatens “to go North Korea” if Ingrid tries to carry all six to term. A physical altercation ensues, leading to Fiona — who has (again) endured a terrible episode — laughing hysterically at the sheer ridiculousness of bringing more Franks into the world.
– At the same moment, Debbie’s trying to fix up the house and busts a gas pipe. The house is about to explode, probably, and Debbie gets stuck under the house. Kelly fishes her out, they’re all saved, but Kelly slaps Debbie on the ass, and there’s something there. Aaaand Carl might be without a girlfriend soon with Debbie gaining one. We’ll see.
– Fiona grows justifiably angry as hell at the neighbor who called the cops on Liam’s lemonade stand because he’s Black. The whole fam throws a loud street party outside this lady’s home, but of course, Fiona cranks things to eleven and punches the racist lady. Running from the cops? Not good. Although everyone cheers for Fiona’s cause, she’s lost almost everything already, and the series snatched away the final few dignities Fiona had left.
All of this happened after Fiona briefly resolved to give up the booze but then found herself fired as Patsy’s Pies manager.
That’s the really tragic aspect of this episode. Fiona was shocked into going sober after nearly being robbed at Patsy’s. Her employees simply didn’t believe Fiona’s reason for sleeping in a restaurant booth while clutching a huge knife. Weird, right? Well, given that Fiona’s been screaming at customers and throwing plates across the place for a solid month while drinking on the job, they’re shell shocked. Yet Fiona resolved to get it together, and she even vocalized to Debbie that she appreciated her stepping up, but boom, Fiona loses her job on top of crashing her car, breaking an arm, finding out Ford’s a cheating a-hole, and losing all of her property and money.
Fiona took a solid step towards redemption, and Shameless pulled her back down by her bootstraps. It’s a stark reminder that Fiona’s held to a much higher standard of behavior than the pathetic patriarch who’s still out there, ruining lives. Fiona resents not being given any sort of break for having a seriously “off” month after giving her employees jobs and being super lenient when they had hardships and/or circumstances that likely would have otherwise led to them getting fired. Yup, Fiona’s right back on the bottle after her ousting. I’m both terrified and excited to see what the writers do with her next.
So while the above chaos swirled, Carl dressed up as a pirate and got paid for it. Frank tried to get a very Frank job as a beer mascot, and Kevin and V. were their newly dull selves again. Meanwhile, surprise, surprise…
Lip And Tami
I’m not sure exactly how I feel about Tami’s almost overnight transformation from totally insensitive hellion to a caring, empathetic young woman who volunteers her days off at nursing homes? I mean, this is good for Lip not to have his manhood and sexual abilities insulted by the person he’s sleeping with, but Tami’s suddenly a different character. She and Lip are now showering together, being emotionally vulnerable, and washing elderly ladies’ hair. They even grocery shop together, which I don’t think anyone even does solo on this show, and then Xan appears on the Gallaghers’ front steps.
A few weeks ago, even, Tami would have thrown a fit about having her prospective hook-up ruined by a child, but instead, she’s suddenly maternal, cooking food for Xan and being very gentle — teaching Lip in the process — while persuading her to not go looking for her deadbeat mom again. It looks like Xan is staying, and Tami and Lip will be surrogate parents. Yet Tami’s probably performing the most unexpected abrupt face we’ve ever seen from a character on this series. If they’re trying to push her into Fiona’s shoes for next season, well, is that possible? Any predictions on exactly how Fiona will go out would probably be inaccurate at this point, but we should find out soon enough.
Showtime’s ‘Shameless’ airs at 9:00 EST on Sundays.