Shameless Season 5 Episode 9 “Uncle Carl”: My Unsolicited Review


How many times can a show break your heart in one season? Holy hell! If you aren’t watching Showtime’s Shameless, then what are you doing with your life?

Throughout its nearly five-year run, this show has had a knack of making the Gallaghers’ story tug at our heart strings, but this season may very well be its most emotional.

My last mention of Shameless was in my “Loving Someone With Mental Illness” post, where I mentioned the character, Ian’s, bipolar diagnosis. Let me tell you, however difficult that I may have thought it was coping with someone living with a mental illness, this show is doing wonders to make me realize that I didn’t know diddly-squat, and I have even more admiration for those who are able to navigate daily lives with this burden.

Ian, newly released from his temporary hold at a psychiatric facility, is refusing to accept his new diagnosis, going so far as to flush his pills down the toilet, claiming that they make him feel that life isn’t worth living. This show’s ensemble has been amazing from the get-go, but Cameron Monaghan and Noel Fisher, in particular, are shining this season like we haven’t seen them shine before.

Debbie, always the soft-spot of the family, is wracked with guilt over Ian’s actions, as she was supposed to have been taking care of him at the time. Emma Kenney has consistently been one of the most lovable characters on this show, and this episode was no exception, as she went to amazing lengths to get more medication for Ian. I was legit in fits of laughter during her whole “I see knives” bit at the hospital. However, it was her advice to an inebriated (and naked) Mickey that he couldn’t “drink Ian away” that really blew my mind!

Ah, Mickey. The resident bad-boy of the show who, at one time, rejected Ian’s love at every opportunity, is now hopelessly at the mercy of his love for Ian and despair at Ian’s situation. Fiona’s admission to Lip at the hospital that she wasn’t surprised that Mickey didn’t show up for Ian’s discharge broke my heart because the truth was that I wasn’t surprised, either. It wasn’t that Mickey didn’t love Ian enough; it was that he loved him too much to deal with seeing Ian the way he was without dying a little inside. The writers of this show are doing an amazing job with the Gallavich relationship, as Ian and Mickey are undoubtedly one of the most admirable couples on television right now, gay or straight.

After a few weeks of being wrapped up in her own marital issues, Fiona is back to being the head of the Gallagher household. To no one’s surprise, her indiscretion with Jimmy-Steve-Jack is proving too much for Gus, who is finding it difficult to forgive her, and actually rejected her offer to come with him on tour. Side note: can Emmy Rossum get a damn Emmy Award already?! Holy hell, this girl can act her damn ass off, and no matter if Fiona’s actions have made you hate or love her, Emmy Rossum has never not been compelling in her role! I mean, even William Macy has received due recognition and, despite the man being a great actor, his role as Frank has literally been the exact same scenario in every damn season!

The worst part of this season, in my opinion, has been the rift between Veronica and Kevin! Those two have been the most phenomenal, sexy and hilarious couple on the show! Why now make them in the midst of a separation is cheap, predictable writing, and I’ll be damned if I let this incredible show jump the shark in any way! With Veronica finally coming around to the fact that her home has changed – thanks to Svetlana, no less (who, by the way, has quickly evolved into an amazing character on the show) – this should have been the end of their little dispute. But, oh no! The writers couldn’t give us a little ray of hope, no way! We find Kevin asleep next to a college coed, both of them naked on the bed! I mean, ugh… how predictable and frustrating was that move?!

Needless to say, I’m obsessed with this show and every character that it gifts us with. We are, no doubt, in for a very trying and heartbreaking summer season… and you can bet your ass that I won’t be missing a single moment!




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