Shameless Season 4 Review “There’s the Rub”

Episode 405

Oh Fiona, can this show throw any more guilt your way? It’s not as if we’ve never seen our favorite Gallagher hit rock bottom before on Shameless but, in ‘There’s the Rub’, with Liam in the hospital, Mike thoroughly broken hearted and the family completely splintered, this is pretty close to her lowest point. Is she going to jail for neglect? And, perhaps more importantly, do we think she should? Shameless has always been great at explaining the desperate circumstances behind the stories we would ordinarily scoff at but, with a light shone on Fiona’s worst instincts this season, maybe it’s time for a little judgement.

And you can see it on Lip’s face – he’s been out of the madhouse for so long and, having come home to solve one Gallagher problem, he’s faced with a lot more than he bargained for. Lip and Fiona have always been the mom and dad of the clan, especially in seasons two and three, and that has meant that when one messes up this badly, the other is normally there to pick up the slack. But, through no fault of his own, Lip hasn’t been there and, as he realizes when he finds Sheila taking care of his three youngest siblings, neither has Fiona. Who’s going to be there now for Carl, Debbie and, assuming he pulls through, Liam?

And while these family issues were playing themselves out, the last thing Carl needed to hear was that Frank viewed Sammy as his last change to “get it right”. Since Debbie washed her hands of her father last year, Carl has been the only one on his side and, with a brand new family to take care of him while he waits for his insurance money to come through, it’s unfortunate that he’s pushed away the one kid who’s always been by his side. This delayed familial loyalty played into the reappearance of Ian, also, as Lip and Debbie tracked him down to his ex-boyfriend’s, his mother’s and then, finally, a nearby gay bar where he’s working.

We got a glimpse and an inkling of what Ian might have gotten himself into since stealing a helicopter and leaving the army, but we’ll have to wait for the inevitably explosive reunion between him and Mickey. Will he feel compelled to return now that Fiona could go to jail? He’s not 18, of course, but my fear is that this mess will be the thing to finally pull Lip out of MIT, just as he’s decided to get his act together and make a go of things there. Once a Gallagher, always a Gallagher, but it would be pretty tragic for Fiona’s own juvenile behavior messing up Lip’s chance to escape the disappointing life his sister has made for herself.

What did you think of the episode? How good was it having Lip back in the house with the rest of the clan? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.