I started the popular Showtime series, Shameless, not too long ago and I can honestly say that this is my new addiction. I am almost finished with the third season and cannot wait to continue. It is such a refreshing take on family values as well as the unfortunate situations that they have to go through to make ends meet.
Still from Shameless, “Pilot” (Season 1, Episode 1, 2011).
Taking on the role as the head of the family, 21 year old Fiona Gallagher has the task of not only making sure five of her siblings are happy, health, and fed, but also finds herself taking care of her estranged, alcoholic father. In most shows that I’ve seen, there is usually a single parent dynamic, but, in this series, the kids are running the show. When researching the idea behind the show, series creator, Paul Abbott, fought to keep the show set in the south side of Chicago. His reasoning for this was because many shows like Shameless normally take place in the deep South or in a trailer park. Abbott wanted to stray away from this idea because he thought this would take away from the realism of the story. He believed that these types of problems do not only happen in the South and I agree. Poverty is not centralized in the South. It is all over and effects so many families each day.
Still from Shameless “But at Last Came a Knock” (Season 1, Episode 9).
In episode 9 of Shameless, we meet the Gallagher family’s mother. This further deepens the Gallagher’s situation as the root of of their issues is brought to fruition. It shows that no matter how hard they try, the Gallaghers cannot seem to escape their past. Throughout the community, their father is known as a deadbeat which does have an affect on them in the long run. Not everything works out for them, but they always stick together no matter the consequences. Establishing this dynamic is important because they are making the best out of a bad situation. I really give my praise toward Fiona due to the fact that she had to drop out of high school and put her life on hold to take care of her family. She is definitely a strong female character that I root for throughout the series because she always confronts her situation with a brave face. Rarely, do you see her break down in front of her family. It is a sign of reassurance that everything will be okay. This maintains the bond that they all hold so dear. I recommend watching it whenever you get a chance.