Episode Title: "Daddyz Girl"
Writer: Nancy M. Pimental
Director: Sanaa Hamri
Previously on "Shameless":
The Gallagher clan’s estranged mother, Monica, and her lesbian lover "Bob, learned that Liam is, indeed, Frank’s son. Steve and Fiona moved into the house he bought next door to the Gallagher home, allowing her to intervene as necessary. Lip and Ian discovered that Frank is not Ian’s dad. After a tense family dinner, Monica decided to leave without Liam.
Meanwhile, Karen trashed Eddie’s clown-shrine in the basement, after he humiliated her at the "Purity Ball." Sheila then threw him out after he returned home from the event.
Debbie (Emma Kenney) asks Fiona (Emmy Rossum) to attend a school meeting about an upcoming St. Patrick’s Day party. Fiona reluctantly agrees and heads over to the school, where she meets an old schoolmate and young mother named Jasmine (Amy Smart). Jasmine takes a liking to Fiona and asks her out for a drink. The two become fast friends, though Fiona is perplexed when Jasmine kisses her on the lips as she says goodbye
After visiting their grandmother in jail, Lip (Jeremy Allen White) and Ian (Cameron Monaghan) track down one of Frank’s brothers, who bears a striking resemblance to Ian. While Lip insists on bringing up the issue of Ian’s paternity, Ian refuses, claiming Lip is the one who wants a new family.
When his worker’s comp runs out, Frank (William H. Macy) takes Deb and Carl (Ethan Cutkosky) on a job hunt. He seeks out only the most accident prone openings and ultimately lands a job where he purposely injures his hand with a staple gun.
Karen (Laura Slade WIggins), now with dyed black hair and a nose ring, trashes her father’s painting studio. When Frank stumbles in with a bottle of Oxycontin, she takes a few of the pills and seduces him, while the whole thing is broadcast, live on her website, "Daddyz Girl."
While staking out Steve, Tony (Tyler Jacob Moore) learns that his car is stolen. He tries to warn Fiona but she won’t hear it. Later, he confronts Steve (Justin Chatwin) and offers him an ultimatum: leave town or go to jail. We’re to assume Steve choses to leave town but moments later, when one of the cars he stole whizzes by Tony, he pulls the car over only to find Lip and Ian inside.
The fact that watching Frank Gallagher attempt to work the system, children in tow, is so entertaining probably says something about me or American society or something to that effect. But that’s not the matter at hand now, is it?
"Shameless" is what I call rubberneck TV. You know, when you crane your head out the window to get an eyeful of that five car pile-up. Though I didn’t think it appealed to any kind of base desire to watch a human trainwreck, as the Gallaghers seem to be pulling through all right, thus far. But after "Daddyz Girl," I’m not so sure.
At times, "Shameless" reminds me of another hit Showtime series, "Weeds." Both deal with families struggling to survive, as the head of their respective household dips deeper and deeper into a pool of moral depravity. Both appear to have little regard for their families and what they’re putting them through by their chosen means of making a living.
And then there’s those disturbing sexual "mishaps," if you will. Not only did Frank have sex with his son’s girlfriend, there’s that whole age of consent issue, which I nearly forgot about. Watching the scene, I find my laughter stifled by a gag reflex.
Karen is no doubt, a deeply disturbed teenager. How she got this way, I’m not even sure I want to know. This just might be where the show goes from outrageous to just plain icky. But I’ll sit through the season finale before passing judgement.
As for the Steven/Fiona/Tony love triangle, I’m interested to see how that plays out. We still don’t really know what kind of guy Steve is, as we’ve only really seen him though Fiona and Debbie’s eyes. What part Fiona’s wannabe new-bestie, Jasmine, plays is also intriguing. Something’s definitely up with her and I think I like where it might be headed.
On "Shameless’s" sensitive side, the scene between Ian and Lip was kind of touching. Lip wants a way out of his deadbeat Dad’s home while Ian is just fine where he is. Maybe it’s the fact that Ian already feels like an outcast but at the same time, accepted and loved, that makes him not want for something better. Meanwhile, Lip, who seems to bury his feelings deep inside, only wants for material comforts. I’m interested to see where these two will really diverge as they stand at this crossroad.
As the first season comes to an end, I’m glad to know we’ve got a second one in the works. Where "Shameless" is headed, though, I can’t imagine. Maybe, I just don’t want to.
Crave Online Rating: 8 out of 10.