Shameless says goodbye to its first Gallagher sibling in a fitting yet frustrating farewell

B-

When a main character exits a long-running series, it’s typically a time for reflection: for more than eight seasons, Ian Gallagher has been a critical part of Shameless, and one of the longest-running primetime explorations of homosexuality in the past decade. There are fans of the show who were drawn in by Ian’s…

Shameless hits a major milestone, but remains mired in dead-end storytelling

C

It’s hard to imagine a more politically fraught environment than our current unending news cycle in the wake of the 2016 Presidential election, and this weekend has been no exception, as across the dial Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh’s respective testimonies dominate the airwaves and social media feeds. We…

Frank gets political, sending Shameless stumbling through an ideological minefield

C+

Frank Gallagher is, at his core, ideologically opportunistic. He will be whatever he needs to be in order to get ahead, shifting his beliefs in whichever direction is necessary to scam a place to stay or scratch together a few bucks. We’re meant to find this kind of behavior abhorrent, I think, but at the same time …

A decent premiere can’t escape the shadow cast over Shameless’ future

B-

If you’re reading this review, there’s a good chance that you’re the type of person who consistently reads about the television show Shameless on the internet. As a result, I feel like it would be disingenuous if I pretended as though the Showtime series’ ninth season doesn’t have a recent piece of news hanging over…

A weak finale suggests Shameless wasn’t even aware it needed to redeem a wasted season

C

One of the central criticisms of the past few seasons of Shameless has been its attempts to rewrite its own history—the end of “Gallavich” (Ian and Mickey’s relationship) was necessary due to Noel Fisher’s exit, but the way the show reframed their relationship as purely destructive and worked to basically erase Mickey…

Will The Chi be the first series to do Chicago right?

No city is a “character.” As much as creators like to elevate their stories by claiming a location, it’s just a clichéd attempt to make something sound important without earning it. Cities are complicated places, and nowhere is that more obvious than in Showtime’s new drama series, The Chi. As much as recent headlines…

Shameless needs to cut to the feeling soon to get its season back on track

C+

As I’ve discussed before, Showtime’s choice to sell streaming rights to Shameless to Netflix has had a clear impact on the show’s audience. With each new season, there will be a group of viewers who binged through the entire series without breaks, experiencing it fundamentally differently than those of us who have…