A Review of the Sixth Season of Shameless

By: Abby Adler  |  April 12, 2016


The 6th season of Shameless was a wild ride for the viewers, and it’s going to be tough to find another show to quench our thirst until it comes back for its 7th season. For those that don’t watch the show, the focus is the dysfunctional Gallagher family that lives in the projects of Chicago. Frank Gallagher, the patriarch of the family, spends the majority of his days drunk, causing the children to fend for themselves, with the eldest daughter, Fiona Gallagher, taking charge. On paper, the show seems dark, but packs a lot of drama and comedy into it, factors that originally got me hooked. It’s never too late to catch up, and I highly recommend it for those who don’t watch. Fellow viewers: here is my reflection of Season 6, based on each character’s storyline.

Fiona Gallagher: I wasn’t so pleased with Fiona’s actions this season. For starters, she cheated on Gus with Sean last season, then proceeded to sell his grandmother’s ring from the Holocaust to a pawn shop to save the house. I also think it was particularly out of character to agree to marry Sean immediately after finalizing her divorce from Gus. While Sean originally seemed like the epitome of stability, it turns out he’s a heroin addict and killed a guy once upon a time. His inability to control his impulses was highlighted when he couldn’t hold back from attacking Frank. Then again, Fiona is known for falling for guys that aren’t the best. Can we bring back Mike, the adorable cups guy, from Season 4? Oh wait, Fiona messed that up by becoming involved with his brother. At least bring back Jimmy/Steve? I definitely liked that chemistry better. It seems Fiona will only find her happy ending in an unstable, chaotic relationships that provide constant action. I hope she eventually grows out of this constant pattern. Either way, it seems like yet another of her unstable relationships has come to end, thanks to Frank’s sabotage of her wedding.

Lip Gallagher: Because Lip has managed to keep a solid head on his shoulders in college thus far, his alcoholic downward spiral was really hard to watch. His relationship with Helene is what got the ball rolling. I originally thought that the professor-student relationship was a tad bit cliche, but Shameless never ceases to impress. While Helene treated him like a pet, I was still excited to see the plot develop throughout the season. Unfortunately, Amanda the psycho came back into the mix as a catalyst in Lip’s life. Thanks to Amanda’s jealousy issues, whatever Lip had with Helene was destroyed and he lost his position as RA, meaning no more free housing. As much as I hate Amanda, I can’t completely blame her for Lip’s downfall. She was just the instigator, but Lip messed up everything on his own. He drank his way into oblivion, got fired as house boy and lost the housing he desperately needed. He still wasn’t finished though: he had to cross the line between him and the drunken Professor Ewins, lose his job as a TA, and the big cherry on top — his scholarship. He proceeded to smash the windows of Ewins’ car, and get arrested. I thought he was capable of keeping cool, but apparently not. I had high hopes for him, but it looks like his college career is over. Poor Lip. Can he please get himself out of the gutter next season? It looks like Professor Ewins is helping him get to that point by checking him into rehab.

Ian Gallagher: Ian had quite the identity crisis. His lack of purpose as “Dav the Janitor” at Lip’s college was disheartening; however, he was finally blessed with a healthy relationship with Caleb, a beautiful, perfect firefighter… who happens to be HIV positive. But it’s no problem, because they both accept each other’s flaws, like Ian’s bipolarity. It was also beautiful to see how his relationship inspired him to go for bigger and better things. Mickey left him in a bad place, and Caleb was just what he needed. I loved seeing him become an EMT. He was finally doing something worthwhile, and it was heart-wrenching to see that taken away. It established that his mental health will always be a part of him, and he can’t escape it. I just hope Ian can successfully separate himself from his mental state, and not define himself solely being bipolar. While it was unrealistic that Ian would get his job back after lying about his mental health, I was ecstatic that he didn’t have to return to his past. Steady boyfriend, steady job… everything’s looking good for Ian at the moment. I’m definitely not ready for Mickey to get out of jail and mess that up.

Debbie Gallagher: I wanted to smack some sense into Debbie this entire season. I wasn’t in the mood for yet another teen mom storyline, but the inevitable finally happened. When she lied to Derek about being on birth control to get pregnant on purpose, I actually cringed at her idiotic choices. I was totally Team Fiona when she wanted Debbie to get rid of it. The Gallaghers weren’t ready to support another kid. I have no sympathy for Debbie. While I commend her for trying to take care of the baby on her own, she clearly proved herself to be incapable when she fell asleep and dropped the baby on the floor. I mean, the baby was named after Frank — obviously, something wasn’t right from the beginning. I’m happy the Gallaghers pulled through for her in the end even though none of them supported her pregnancy. I love that the Gallaghers are always there for each other. Still, I’m not down for this baby situation. Debbie was the most annoying character on the show this season. At least she had the decency to show up to Fiona’s wedding in the end.

Carl Gallagher: White Boy Carl was definitely one of my favorites. His wannabe-gangster persona provided much of the necessary comic effect as it was lacking with other characters. I found myself always excited for scenes with Carl and his sidekick Nick taking on the thug life together. His never-ending pursuit of Dominique was so entertaining to watch. Alas, all good things come to an end. Carl had to learn the hard way that the life he chose didn’t just involve getting money and getting turnt. As much as I don’t love Sean, I’ll give him props for helping Carl get out of danger for good. I found the way Carl got out to be unrealistic, though. Giving a gang your car and your clothes doesn’t substitute as a “get out of jail free card.” Nevertheless, he got out, and even though I’ll miss the homie I’ve come to love, I know it’s good for him. And he got the girl, so that’s a plus. His future aspirations involve… becoming a cop? Loving the ironic twist there. I wonder how it’ll play out in the next season.

Liam Gallagher: Wishing this kid would speak already. It’s been 6 seasons. Liam should have a personality at this point. At least Frank used him as a prop to make money for Fiona’s wedding.

Classic Frank antics this season. Whether it be using Debbie’s pregnancy to make money off the government, or playing Cancer Concierge in Bianca’s memory, he never fails to entertain. I was surprised that he actually decided to take on the role of the patriarch for Fiona’s wedding, but of course, that went down hill. I thought it was totally out of character for Frank to pay some random hit-man on the subway to go after Sean. Frank’s a lot of things, but a murderer isn’t one of them. Then again, Frank’s never predictable. While Frank totally ruined Fiona’s wedding, I will acknowledge that he indirectly saved Fiona from a marriage to a heroin addict.

As per usual, Shameless never ceases to make my Sunday nights. I just wish the seasons lasted longer and came back sooner. Nevertheless, it still holds its title as my current favorite TV show. Cheers to many more awesome seasons!