Sunday, March 3, 2019

REVIEW: 'Shameless' - Fiona Begins to Accept Responsibility for Her Recent Damaging Behavior in 'Lost'

Showtime's Shameless - Episode 9.13 "Lost"

Frank's injury gets in the way of everyone's plans as Fiona attempts to get her life back on track and Lip grows frustrated with his relationship with Tami. Carl gets some bad news about his future. Debbie finally makes a move on Kelly. Kevin and Veronica get in trouble at the twins' preschool.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Showtime's Shameless.

"Lost" was written by John Wells and directed by Iain B. MacDonald

Fiona's downward spiral has officially concluded. She went to her first AA meeting in the previous episode. And now, she is continuing with the program. She hit her rock bottom. That was an eye-opening experience for her. She is shocked by just how quickly she was knocked back down to the bottom. She accepts that she was responsible for so much destructive behavior. She is finally dealing with the consequences of such as well. Sure, she is forgiven a little too easily by Eliza who is also at the AA meeting. They basically return to being friends who understand that this is a brutal disease that can inform so much of one's behavior. Of course, Fiona doesn't know if she is an alcoholic. She doesn't have the same clarity as Lip does. As such, what works for him may not be what works for her. Instead, she may find comfort from al-anon meetings. That too could be very beneficial to her. Sure, she still has to go to AA and find a new job in order to present a better case in her legal woes. But the public defender makes it seem like all of this could be brought down to a misdemeanor simply because of the racial elements at play. That's simplifying things a little too much. Sure, the woman Fiona pushed was a racist who should be publicly shamed for her actions. But she was still assaulted. Fiona did a lot of damage with her one punch too. That means that things can't reach a simple conclusion especially since Fiona is also a convicted felon. The show briefly remembers that here as well. All of this is truly a moment of profound realization for Fiona. Her last big success as a businesswoman is also being demolished. The episode opens with Frank awoken by a wrecking ball destroying the apartment building. That leads to a whole chaotic story with him in which he breaks his leg. That's also a fascinating story because there is no reason anyone at the hospital should trust Frank at his word. He's looking to score as much drugs as possible. The show briefly remembers that he's on his second liver too. That was such a miraculous decision way back in Season 4. And now, Frank is abandoned on the street because the hospital is tired of putting up with his extensive expenses. Sure, that's absolutely horrifying and shows the failures of the system. But again, Frank is a grifter who always finds a way to survive. The doctors may have a cavalier attitude about all of this. But the show also comes off with the idea that this really isn't as big a deal as it seems. The same can also be said of Fiona trying to pull herself back up again. These last few episodes have proven that she has always been lucky when it comes to business. She lucked her way into numerous success stories. And now, it should be daunting for her to try to rebuild her life. Lip knows just how difficult it can be. But the entire family is there to support her. However, Emmy Rossum is leaving the show. That means a convenient excuse is popping up once more in Max who immediately presents her with yet another way to avoid this kind of financial ruin. That may be too easy. But it also proves that Fiona is given yet another opportunity to make something of her life.

Throughout the life of the show, the Gallagher siblings have all tried to break free of the pattern of making the same mistakes and being unable to climb up to the next social ladder. They have always been struggling to get by. Many of them had these grand aspirations for how they would get out of the neighborhood. The show has gone back-and-forth on which member of the family is best primed to do so. Ian is successful at the moment because he's no longer living in the Gallagher house and dependent on his siblings. But that's bound to be short-lived because he's away in prison. When he gets out, he will be right back in the family home. The future may actually look bright for Fiona at the moment because she is given this life preserver from Max once more. That is such a chance meeting at the gas station that hires Fiona for the night shift. But it also shows that no matter how bleak things look in the moment there is still the chance of something better being around the corner. Sure, the siblings have to fight to maintain that success. That has been the issue that has plagued all of this. They believe they have found a way out only to be back to normal in a couple of months. Relationships can't lead to their escape. Nor can professional successes because of the conflicts foisted upon them by personal complications. Lip's future was derailed because of his alcoholism. Now, he's in limbo as Tami makes her decision about whether or not to have this baby. She still hasn't made up in her mind. She is pushing back against anyone who is trying to make that decision for her. Lip is just trying to be supportive. But he also doesn't know everything that is going on with her. That too is a fundamental characteristic of the Gallaghers. They are too caught up in their own problems to notice what each other are going through. Liam has been missing for the last few episodes. Here, it's finally explained that he is staying with his new friend and the rest of the siblings haven't noticed at all. They are just now wondering where he is. That's sad. It also mostly means that his story this season peaked with the lemonade stand. He has no more purpose that needs to be fulfilled. Meanwhile, Carl gets his rejection letter from West Point. That coupled with his recent breakup with Kelly makes him feel depressed. He is suddenly just the latest guy working a crappy minimum wage job in the hopes of contributing to the family. That's his future at the moment. And finally, Debbie makes her move on Kelly and is completely rejected. Her questioning her sexuality this season hasn't been handled all that well. But it's still heartbreaking listening to her as she just wants someone to love her. She doesn't think that's too much to ask. It's just been difficult to find. Now, she has created many problems for herself in the past. She may be projecting too much of her personal happiness onto other people. But again, the siblings are willing to support each other the moment that they are honest and willing to accept their own failings too. That still means something.