SHAMELESS 4.11 ‘Emily’
Episode Title: "Emily"
Writer: Nancy M. Pimental
Director: Anthony Hemingway
Previously on "Shameless:"
It’s all about making good in this penultimate episode of “Shameless’” excellent fourth season. Coming clean, coming out and going inside are all on the agenda in this hour as the Gallaghers and friends take some big steps in the right direction.
Of course, there’s the requisite craziness as Sheila (Joan Cusack) drops by Frank’s (William H. Macy) hospital room with her newly adopted Native American tribe of children to visit her husband. She gets in Frank’s face, insisting he wake up and perform his “husbandly duties” in front of his assorted children of various age and relation, but it’s Carl (Ethan Cutkosky) who knocks him into consciousness with a punch to the nuts.
He may be awake but Frank is suffering from post-operative delusions, mistaking Sheila for his mother and Samantha (Emily Bergl) for Deb. In a surprisingly touching moment, Frank confuses the young girl waiting for a new heart in the bed across from him for Fiona. He apologizes for leaving her and Lip in a park while he and Monica were out scoring drugs and promises to be a better father. The little girl, whose father abandoned her when she got sick, plays along, calling him “Daddy.” Shortly after, she dies. She didn’t get her heart, but she did have a father for a moment in the most unlikely person in all of Chicago, Frank Gallagher.
We’ve seen Frank try to do right before only to stumble back to his drunken derelict ways. However in “Emily,” taken from the young girl’s name, Frank is completely sincere, albeit delusional. He may not be himself, in the current sense, but the scene provides hope that there once was some good in Frank that could surface again.
While Frank recovers, the rest of the Gallaghers deal with the demands of various relationships. Amanda (Nichole Bloom) insists Lip (Jeremy Allen White) keep his word about “terrorizing” her parents. He tells her to bring them over for dinner, which just happens to be when the social worker shows up for her surprise visit. With beer bottles and children everywhere, courtesy of Carl’s new girlfriend, Bonnie, both Amanda’s parents and the social worker are sufficiently terrified.
However, while Amanda’s father scoffs at the idea of his daughter dating a guy who lets the neighborhood kids run wild through his living room, the social worker warms up when she learns that Lip has taken the kids out of the van they call home and into his house. She lets him know when she’ll be back for another “surprise visit” and Lip takes a ten thousand dollar bribe from Dad not to date his daughter. But that doesn’t stop Amanda from returning a little later to let Lip know he should have held out for more money.
As for the rest of the Gallagher clan, Ian (Cameron Monaghan) is sick of playing “mistress” to the closeted Mickey (Noel Fisher). Ian is about to break up with him when Mickey turns his son’s baptism into his coming out party at the Alibi. Terry (Dennis Cockrum), fresh out of jail, attacks Mickey and Ian gets in the mix, along with Terry’s friends. The scuffle ends with Terry getting hauled off by the cops and Ian and Mickey laughing off their wounds.
In other relationship developments, young Carl invites his girlfriend, Bonnie (Morgan Lily) to move in with him, along with her entire family. Deb (Emma Kenney) thinks she’s going to the dance with a cute eleventh-grader only to learn the whole thing was a prank orchestrated by Matt’s girlfriend, Seema (Susie Abraham). While Deb scrolls through the aftermath on Facebook, Matt (James Allen McCune) shows up and tells her he dumped Seema for what she did. Deb admits to antagonizing Seema but Matt explains that she’s an adult and Deb is a kid, something she doesn’t like to hear. What does help is his offer to take Deb to the dance.
Finally, there’s Fiona (Emmy Rossum), getting used to life in jail, again, after violating her parole. Not a whole lot goes on here but just watching Fiona get her bed assignment, use the communal toilet and take a shower gives us the impression that she’s pretty damn miserable. Like Frank, the situation makes you wonder if Fiona can find the person she used to be and make things right with her family and herself. If Frank can do it, Fiona certainly can but whether or not redemption is in the future for this father and daughter will hopefully be revealed in next week’s season finale.