There comes the point in every family in which you need to leave the nest and grow up.
Shameless Season 11 Episode 7 found the siblings fighting over the future of the Gallagher house, and, as expected, Debbie dug her heels into the ground and refused to agree to sell the house.
As a character, Debbie has never been consistently written, but this version who wants to preserve the place she grew up and still have her family around felt like a fulfilling arc for her.
While everyone else is embracing change, she’s very set in her ways and doesn’t see herself living in a dwelling that doesn’t include the bustle of the Gallagher house.
If you watch Shameless online, you know the home has had quite the revolving door of occupants throughout the run of the series, but the building has been in a state of disrepair for years.
It’s an accident waiting to happen and is holding everyone else back. Debbie has tried to fix many issues in recent years, but her siblings want to move away from the Southside.
On Shameless Season 1 Episode 1, the Southside was bursting at the seams with families who knew each other.
Nowadays, thanks to Gentrification, the people of color and the less financially stable are quitting town because of how the place is going.
Debbie: You wanted to do your own shit. I’ll never forgive you for that.
Sammi: You’ll never forgive me for that?
Debbie: They’ll never. Prince will never.
Sammi: Holy shit. You think I’m Monica.
Sammi: I am not your mom, Debbie.
It’s hard to imagine the Gallaghers not living in the place, but there will always be a part of the place in them, no matter where they ago.
The storyline feels like something that should be a part of the final season, and this is actually the first time throughout Shameless Season 11 that the show has had a clear direction.
I suspect the house’s fate will hinge on one final vote, and that will be Fiona. Then again, it’s not like we’ve heard of her checking in with the family, so it’s likely she’s on another continent, making up for all of the years she spent not having a youth due to caring for her siblings.
Bringing V’s mother back to help harken back to the Southside’s wider issues was an odd choice.
She fell off the radar after the whole Kev and V wanting to have children storyline, but she didn’t strike me as a character that would get some much-needed screentime in the final stretch of episodes.
Then again, those scenes intended to light the passion inside V for changes to the way the world worked. Her career in politics is either going to be long-lasting or very short-lived.
Veronica has many skeletons in her closet, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility to think that people will dig into her past if she becomes a prominent figure in the world of politics.
Heck, her husband may or may not be arrested for playing with the stolen bikes. Kev has never been the brightest character, but he might have implicated both Brad and Lip in the robbery if the police officer follows up on the investigation.
Ian: That was a bust, huh?
Mickey: Oh, yeah, apart from a hand job, duck, and orgy, total waste of a fucking day. Still think we need gay friends?
Ian: Need? No. I mean, I’m not opposed to it. We just … we want friends we have things in common with. There’s a reason I do the same thing as Lip. I’m like Lip. I’m okay if he’s my only friend for now.
Mickey: All right, wanna go tell Debbie you wanna do what Lip wants on this thing? She’s gonna love you so much.
The lady was either very interested in cracking the case or very interested in those bikes, and that could result in Kev being arrested. Using his business premises for dodgy dealings could also result in the bar or the gym being shut down.
I liked how Kev’s stupid move made Lip squirm. Lip has been making all the wrong decisions of late in his desperate attempts not to live with Tami’s parents.
At the end of the day, Tami gets a lot of flack from the fans because of her obsessive nature, but putting her foot down and telling Lip his time was up was the only way this would go.
Moving back home is obviously tough, but he didn’t keep his end of the deal, despite Tami giving him a decent amount of time.
Ian and Mickey’s storyline about not having enough gay friends was some much-needed comic relief in the midst of all the insanity but did the writers really need to make the group of men participate in group sex?
Why couldn’t they break the mold and allow the pair to make meaningful connections without the sex?
Carl’s sexual assault storyline was also handled miserably and downright offensively. Even if the woman uses the excuse that she’s allergic to latex after the matter, why didn’t she tell him that before they had sex?
We witnessed her completely ignore his request to wait until he had a condom. She had ample opportunity to tell him how she felt, and they could have found another way to have safe sex.
It was also sketchy how she asked him about his benefits as a police officer, et cetera. This could have been handled in a much better manner instead of making a dumb joke about it at the end of the episode.
“Two at a Biker Bar, One in the Lake” was another ho-hum installment. Frank’s storyline isn’t even going anywhere if the family doesn’t acknowledge his existence, but at least the show is starting to build toward a conclusion, I guess.
What are your thoughts on the way the various storylines were handled? Do you think the show could have done better with the sexual assault storyline?
Hit the comments below.
Catch new episodes Sundays at 9 p.m. on Showtime.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.