SHAMELESS 2.05 ‘Father’s Day’

Frank gets fingered for Eddie's murder while Lip struggles with the new of Karen's pregnancy.

Hilary Rothingby Hilary Rothing

Episode Title: 'Father's Day'

Writer: Etan Frankel

Director: Anthony Hemingway

Previously on "Shameless":

Sheila reverted back to her agoraphobic ways when a piece of airplane debris landed on her sidewalk. Fiona helped Deb throw a slumber party, but things went sour when Holly tried to hook-up with Lip. Carl started hanging out with a trouble maker, Lil Hank and Lip learned that Karen is pregnant.

Story:

Carl (Ethan Cutkosky) rents out Frank's room to a prostitute while over at Sheila's, the police show up to notify her that they've found Eddie's body. Richard invites Fiona (Emmy Rossum) to a wedding and Frank (William H. Macy) dodges the police when he learns he may be a suspect in Eddie's apparent murder.

Vee (Shanola Hampton) learns that Kevin lied to her about coaching a basketball game and begins to suspect he's cheating. Frank gets picked up by the police, but it's for the statutory rape of Karen, not Eddie's murder. Lip (Jeremy Allen White) stops by Karen's to talk to her about their baby. She tells him not to worry about it and that she and Jody are now married.

Karen (Laura Slade Wiggins) and Sheila (Joan Cusack) drop the charges against Frank. However, the female detective on the case warns him not to leave the city.  Later, at a neighborhood barbecue, when Frank gloats about getting off, the detective promises to prove that he murdered Eddie.

At home, Vee confronts Kevin (Steve Howey) about cheating on him after following him to another woman's apartment. She has him strip naked and threatens to cut off his testicles with a bolt cutter. When Kevin explains that the woman is his reading tutor, Vee doesn't buy it.

At the wedding, Richard's friend presumes Fiona is a high class prostitute. When Richard returns, she admits to not being a Princeton grad and begins to makes an exit. Meanwhile, Vee pays a visit to Kev's tutor and realizes he's telling the truth.

Colonel McNally stops by the Gallagher home to drop off a West Point application. However, it's Lip, not Ian who he's interested in.

Desperate for Lil Hank's attention, Deb (Emma Kenney) goes to Mandy (Emma Greenwell) for help. At the BBQ, she approaches a drunk Hank, who gives her a bouquet of nearly dead flowers.

After Ethel (Madison Davenport) tells Malik about her imprisoned husband, Clyde, Malik has his father, who's serving time at the same prison, shank him. Richard drops Fiona off in front of her house and then invites her out to dinner. Just then, Steve (Justin Chatwin) emerges from next door and asks Fiona to tell Tony he stopped by.

Breakdown:

Buried underneath weekly display of familial dysfunction in "Shameless" runs a theme.  In "Father's Day" the common thread woven through the chaos had to do with identity. Everything from paternity to homicide to "unliteracy" was on the table this week and it made for another excellent episode.

"Shameless" packs a lot of shock value in its punch but it also succeeds at developing an ensemble cast of characters who are more than the sum of their depraved acts and dysfunctional relationships. Actually, they're quite an ambitious lot. And as Frank said when explaining his child-rearing philosophy to Lip, "the best gift you can give is neglect."

In "Father's Day," Lip tried to reach out to Karen, who is now pregnant, possibly with his child. While Frank urged his son to ditch his fatherly duties, Lip promised Karen he wouldn't follow in his father's footsteps with their child. Meanwhile, Frank had some ditching of his own to do, regarding an investigation into Eddie's murder and statutory rape charges stemming from drunken sex with Karen. 

As for the rest of the Gallagher brood, Fiona starred in her own "Pretty in Pink" remake when she tried to hide her lower-middle class roots from Richard, only to be found out by his presumptuous friend, who pegged her for a high-class escort. Meanwhile, Debbie tried to get Little Hank's attention by slathering on make-up and talking about switchblade knives.

We can't blame the Gallaghers for trying to expand their horizons. But as much as Lip wants Karen to believe he won't end up like Frank, their past relationship doesn't give her much to go on. And when push comes to shove, he's awfully good at pushing his potential baby's momma around, verbally. 

Of course, we can blame all of Lip and the rest of the Gallaghers' problems on Frank and yet he still remains endearing, perhaps because his scheming and scamming is so pathetically transparent. 

But now we're talking about a potential new generation of Gallagher. Whether or not Lip is the child's father or brother remains to be seen. Either way, the kid is a Gallagher and thus screwed from the get go. 

Or is he/she? That all depends on the type of father (presumably) Lip wants to be. In other words, how much does he hate Frank? Judging by the number of fist fights he's gotten into lately, it looks like Lip's harboring some nuclear-level rage. Fatherhood might be just the thing this drug dealing, chain smoking degenerate needs.

Crave Online Rating: 8 out of 10.