On Sunday night (January 12), Shameless returned to Showtime. Now into its fourth season, isn’t it about time people quit with the “The English version is better” diatribes and just allowed themselves to enjoy this show for what it is? Maybe in time we’ll talk about a tired, dreadful Shameless in much the same way we did about The Office. But for now, this is an excellent show.
First of all, the return of Shameless also means the return of the High Strung’s “The Luck You Got,” the show’s main theme, to mainstream TV. Hell of a song, and it’s still great to see the local boys getting that recognition.
As for the episode, it set up the season beautifully. The Gallagher family members are still diamonds in the rough, with the exception of Frank (William H. Macy), who has turned to heroin and living in filthy squats after being told that alcohol will kill him. The man’s stench virtually oozes out of the TV.
Lip is at college and not really settling in at all. Fiona is holding the clan together as best she can, while dating her boss. Ian has run off with the army and hasn’t been heard from since. Debbie is now a teen and starting to give a shit about boys. Carl wants to take care of his awful dad. Kev finds out that Veronica is pregnant, on top of the fact that he already managed to get her mom into a “with child” state. And the godawful Milkovich family continues to make the Gallaghers look like the Brady Bunch, Mickey pimping out his wife and still angry that he’s gay.
It’s all completely fucked up. Like previous seasons, the episode made me want to take a bleach bath, just to get the TV stank off me. But the performances are wonderful, it’s incredibly funny, and the storylines are compelling. Season 4 is off to a great start.