Post Mortems
Shameless Recap

Shameless Boss on Fiona's Wedding Day Shocker, Lip's Spiral and More

Warning: The following contains spoilers for Sunday’s finale of Shameless

During Sunday’s Season 6 finale of Shameless, Fiona’s heart suffered yet another crushing blow.

Just moments before her wedding to Sean, a high-as-a-kite Frank busted in and revealed that his daughter’s soon-to-be husband had been using heroin. Needless to say, the nuptials did not go on as planned, with Sean taking off to fight for custody of his son.

Meanwhile, a drunken Lip was bailed out of jail by his professor, who urged him to get help and later dropped him off at rehab. (Time will tell if he actually entered the facility.)

Below, executive producer Nancy Pimental talks about Fiona’s potentially single outlook, Lip’s spiral into alcoholism, Ian’s “complicated” future and more.

TVLINE | Is it over for good between Fiona and Sean?
We just started talking about Season 7, so I don’t have any specifics yet. It’s like real life versus fictional life. Obviously, Dermot [Mulroney] got a pilot, so that might inform how much we do with them. We, certainly, are entertaining more stories with them, but they kind of go hand in hand… But certainly, as of right now, it’s the end of them, for sure.

TVLINE | This yet another relationship for Fiona that’s ended badly in a pretty big way. What lessons should she take away from this?
That maybe she should be single for a while and she doesn’t need a man. That she doesn’t have a great picker. That coming from the Gallaghers, certainly, influences her decisions and what she finds normal and what she finds to be acceptable behavior.

TVLINE | Emmy Rossum recently told me that she’s asked the producers why Fiona is never single for a stretch of time. How much did that factor into your decision to maybe finally explore that avenue for the character?
I don’t think we necessarily exploded this relationship because we wanted to see her single. The relationship exploded because, like I said, she doesn’t have great role models with her parents and she doesn’t have a great picker. We wanted to stay authentic to the character. Somebody who’s never gone to therapy, somebody who has the parents that they do, what actions are they taking? What relationships are they getting into? Now that the relationship has ended, it does open us up to having her start asking those questions herself — “Maybe I do need to be single. Maybe I need to figure out who I am without a guy.” The character informed us of the journey she wanted to take, and that will continue as she looks at her patterns.

TVLINE | Obviously, she and Sean are in a bad place right now, but is it in her to forgive him at some point and want to get back together? Or is it too much to get over?
Again, we’ve barely talked about anything and what the future holds. Has there been a conversation of them getting back together [and] what would that look like? Yeah, absolutely. In some ways, there’s the argument of, in any relationship, it’s [about] accepting the person. We talk about [radical acceptance] a lot. It’s like being totally secure and confident in yourself and being in a relationship with somebody who maybe is not, who has a lot of faults. If you want to be with them, you don’t change them and you have to accept them. Is that mature or dysfunctional? Those conversations, we’re having all the time.

Shameless RecapTVLINE | Of all the Gallaghers, Lip seemed the most likely to break free and make something of himself. Why the decision to have him go down this road of being an alcoholic like Frank?
Again, it’s where the character told us to go, because even though he’s bright and he’s been handed so many opportunities, he’s still a product of his parents. We really want to stay authentic to what happens when you are raised in chaos, dysfunction and bad role modeling and a lower socioeconomic world. How do you get out of your own way? How much of that influences your upbringing, all those external things, and how much does your inner fire help you break free from it? It’s not a straightforward answer, either one. We wanted to really create some complexity in the character.

TVLINE | While Lip is spiraling, Ian, of all people, has found himself in a good place this season with a new relationship and a job. Can we expect that to last?
I don’t think with any Gallagher, we can expect a good thing to last, because the Gallaghers aren’t ones that are looking at themselves, taking inventory and controlling their own chaotic impulses. With all the Gallaghers, we can expect anything that’s good getting complicated.

Shameless RecapTVLINE | Fiona has not kicked Debbie out of the house despite her earlier threats. Have they gotten over their differences about the baby?
No, I don’t think so, at all. Fiona still believes she’s going to get stuck watching that kid like she got stuck watching her five brothers and sisters. She’s torn because, obviously, it’s her sister and she loves her dearly, but her sister is putting her in a very complicated spot. She’s almost finished raising all these kids, and now there’s a young one. Debbie swears that she’s going to take care of the kid, but Debbie’s also 16.

Shameless fans, what did you think of the season ender? Grade it via the poll below, then hit the comments to back up your pick!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Emma says:

    Hey Nancy, pony up the cash and rehire Noel for season 7. Caleb is boring, and Ian’s story is, like, twelve times more interesting when Mickey’s a part of it.

    • Kit says:


    • Isabella says:

      TRUE. They did NOT do Mickey justice

    • Jkopij says:

      Oh my GOD they threw away Mickeys storyline after years of character development – Noel was the best actor on the show! They should bring Mickey BACK

    • Nan says:

      Thank you, even if Noel’s new show get’s picked up he can do both

    • JJ says:

      Noel has moved on to doing movies. He might make a guest appearance for Season 7, but I don’t see him coming back full time. I actually like Ian’s development this season without Mickey, they gave Ian a backbone and a purpose.

      • Bill says:

        I have no issue with his development work-wise (although we didn’t get to see a lot of it), but implying that Mickey was somehow a block to that development is just not true. He supported Ian through some tough times in s5 and I’m sure he would have been supportive of these new job aspirations as well.

        • Mickie offered his own kind of support, the kind he was capable of offering; that doesn’t mean the support he gave Ian was in any way helpful. Mickie is damaged and self-destructive and Ian is bi-polar. They might make a very dynamic and interesting couple on-screen but they wouldn’t work in real life. I think that Noel is a terrific young actor and would love to seem him back but I can’t romanticize a very self-destructive relationship such as theirs. He was one of MANY “blocks” to Ian’s development.

    • Pat says:

      Yeah, the writers just don’t know what to do with him. Plus Cameron’s acting just goes to another level when acting against Noel. Season 5 may not have been my favorite season for Ian and Mickey, but the acting was amazing.

      • Bill says:

        I agree, I have to say I found his acting sub-par this season. I think not working with Noel makes a difference for him.

  2. Carmen says:

    Please work around Dermot Mulroneys schedule and please figure out how to reunite Sean and Fiona. This is devastating.

  3. JJ says:

    Good riddance to Sean. Was never a fan of the character and the Sean/Fiona romance. I really hope Fiona stays single for a good chunk of Season 7 and that Lip is able to bounce back from his low point. I love Carl’s development this season, and I also liked Ian with Caleb even though people are still rooting for Gallavich.

  4. Chris says:

    I love these people, especially Lip and Ian. Just want them to do well,. Come on give someone in the family a break.

  5. Mike Cirillo says:

    I was sorry to hear the producer say in regard to Ian that we can’t expect his happiness to last because the Gallaghers aren’t ones to look at themselves. That seems an odd statement after the soul searching scene he had in the finale deciding not to go back down his old road, fighting for his job and the speech about managing his mental illness.

    • HawaiiWahine says:

      Totally agree. More importantly, there may be youths from dysfunctional families who watch the show and need Lip and Ian to be role models for them to show that they can survived and thrive. Time to move onto other characters and their problems who are helped by (or hindered by) the Gallaghers.

  6. We root for Ian, Lip and Fiona. We want to know that people in their circumstances can win. That they can find happiness. Perhaps they can succeed in life-

  7. Heyk says:

    I totally disagree with his comment that you have to keep going with a cycle of dysfunctional because of how you were raised. Not true at all! Yeah it does happen often but there are success stories. One of them has to have a good ending.

    • SLB says:

      Ugh. Thank you! Perhaps this writer came from a perfectly functional background and thinks that those of us who didn’t are somehow incapable of doing anything worthwhile.

      But you know, she can count on us to keep watching. You know, because we love TV so much.

      • Tina says:

        But if that happens it wouldn’t be “Shameless”. The appeal of this show is the failure of its characters.

        • I disagree, respectfully. I think the appeal of this show is the hope that we all have, as viewers, that the Gallagher family(minus Frank) will overcome the roadblocks that their parents, life and they themselves have placed in their way. The only failures that make me happy are Frank’s and I truly can’t wait until they kill him off.

    • Steven says:

      Thank you! I hates this product of your parents nonsense. Sure that does happen, but Fiona also is the one who pretty much raised all of them while being a semi good role model. All of the characters finding ways to destroy their own lives has been endless and boring.

  8. Ryan says:

    Fiona needs jimmy after she is single for a while. Ian should visit mickey in jail. Lip and mandy should talk after he gets out of rehab. Debbie should get help with the baby. Maybe monica can come back again. And maybe sheila and Karen can comeback as well those are my suggestions and what i would like to see.

  9. donna c says:

    Hugely disappointed with the way Lip’s story played out. There are highly functioning alcoholics that keep it together and think that Lip’s character should have been allowed to develop in this way. What unfolded was too stereotypical and predictable.
    Big letdown!

    • Miranda says:

      Agreed. But I don’t consider the drinking as his issue, even though that’s the way it’s been written. It feels more, to me, like he was triggered by falling in love and having that squashed when it all went south. He’s never really seen a functional relationship, so that was how it played out in my books.

      • Phil says:

        He definitely has a drinking issue. In my experience, the difference between a functioning alcoholic as opposed to a dysfunctional one has to do with the rest of their life. If they’re generally happy with everything going on, like Lip was when he was with Heleen, then the drinking isn’t really a problem. But, when the rest of his life went south, he let the drinking take over and he couldn’t control himself because of the booze when he got angry about anything. He was a functional alcoholic. Not anymore. But it was definitely a drinking problem that caused all his troubles. Every bad decision he made this season was when he was drunk. And he’s smart enough to not have done any of those things had he been sober at the time.

        • Shelley S. says:

          I agree w/what you said about Lip’s drinking, as in Real life too what may start out as “functional” Alcoholism can quickly become Out of control due to heartbreak & other stresses in the person’s life, Especially if one has a genetic pre-disposition as Lip does from Frank (& as I recall Frank’s mom was also a alcoholic). Re other parts of Seas 6 finale, I think Ian showed emo growth, introspection, & courage, which I’m so glad about, but I wish they would’ve allowed Fiona & Sean to get married, & perhaps had her discover he was still using Next season; they could’ve had her let Frank walk her down the aisle & give her a happy ending, for now at least.

  10. Scott says:

    I love Shameless and have watched since the very first episode. While I understand for the need to portroy their lives as an eternal struggle, I realize that I watch it with the hope that they are growing, improving upon their situations and seeing new challenges. If what the producer Pimental say is that they can never escape their world due to their upbringing or habits of their world, then it makes it a bit pointless to watch. I hope they will be able to grow beyond their “dealt hands” or else Shameless will be Hopeless.

    • Greg says:

      I agree, sucks all the joy out of watching a show if they are going to just struggle through horrible things for years and end up in just as horrible of a spot. Let the characters grow, sure they can have set backs, but don’t push them back to square one every second season and say they can never change.

    • Shelley S. says:

      I totally agree, Thanks for expressing that. I hope the writers & producers realize it’s likely many Shameless viewers feel this way, as they write Season 7, and let the Gallagher “kids” grow & overcome their dysfunctional upbringing, at least to some degree.

  11. Flo says:

    Shameless is the only show I’ve watched this long that has remained good with solid writing. Love it.

    • Anna says:

      I love this show, but good, solid writing? Ian’s new boyfriend is a part of the all gay shift at the Chicago Fire Department (that’s super illegal). Fiona pawned Gus’s ring for way less than it was worth at the first pawn shop she went to, despite the fact that they live in one of the biggest cities in the country and there are at least a dozen pawn shops on the south side alone, and she really needed that money. Mickey, despite never being needy a day in his life, got Ian’s name tattooed on his chest when they broke up and spelled it wrong, despite the fact that we have seen him spell it correctly before.

      This season has been anything but well-written.

      • An all-gay shift at a fire department would only be illegal if they refused to hire straight men and women. There are, however, firehouses in a few metropolitan areas that have all-gay shifts, so to speak. They came as a result of homophobia(initially) and were just sort of perpetuated afterward.

        Mickey and Fiona will never be members of a brain-trust. And Fiona has never been one to weigh her options; she makes one rash decision after another and doesn’t reflect upon her mistakes until well after-the-fact. I would have been far more shocked if Fiona had gone to other shops to get additional quotes…that, to me, would have been lazy writing because it would have been so out-of-character for her.

  12. Alan Motley says:

    I love Ians new storyline and Boyfriend… I LOVE the diversity and would love them to build a relationship. I COULD forsee sadly season 8 or 9, his bf taking a turn with HIV…

    • Wise Mocha says:

      People who follow their treatment like they are suppose to can live for decades. However, it would be interesting to explore some of the challenges of being HIV+ though.

  13. Jflow says:

    Good episode!!! Any Doctor worth their salt, would have called child protective services immediately after the things Debs told her. Period.

    • HawaiiWahine says:

      Agree. At the very least she would have gotten Debs into counseling and hooked up with an agency that could provide a volunteer relief nanny once in awhile. Debs dropped the baby and it had a rash. Deb looked exhausted. The doc just looking at her sympathetically didn’t work for me.

  14. TheOne says:

    Shameless Season 6 Finale was very Good. Excited for Season 7 Already! Maybe 8 and 9? LOL

  15. flowerduh says:

    I’m glad to see polyamory being talked about with Kevin and V’s household. (They are my favorite characters!) I like the fact that they create their own rules about their own family. There’s some real love in that household!

    I hope Lip gets his life together. I wish the writers will continue to let Ian find his way. I believe that next season Debbie will finally figure out why she had a baby in the first place; and she’s going to go off the deep end! Fiona’s going to end up looking after her baby. The only person that is going to turn out half way decent is Carl. Watch and see!

  16. Marcy says:

    How does the executive producer not even know how old a character is? Debbie said she was 15 on this episode.

  17. Sue says:

    I love Kev and V but Svetlana is getting on my nerves! Totally bored with her bully behavior. Hoping Carl sticks with New outlook…he was another one that made me want to give him a swirly!

  18. Bwhit says:

    I get that this is a family that thrives on chaos but at least ONE of them has to find a way to get out of it, and have some happiness after SIX going on SEVEN seasons. It’s not interesting anymore watching all of these characters screw up time and again. To her comment on accepting who people are, if that’s the case I would rather Fiona accept Jimmy, the fibber/car thief over Sean, the heroin addict. We already saw what happens when Fiona goes down that path. If they insist on her being with someone bring back the one who she had off the charts chemistry with and truly loved her for her, although I do hope we see single Fiona first.

  19. Jules says:

    I like Caleb and Ian together and I’d LOVE for Ian to make it as an EMT. If they want to “challenge” his happiness then have Mickey come back just as Ian & Caleb are getting serious. I just don’t need them ALL having some f’d up drama at the same time. It’s too depressing.

  20. Kristina says:

    I just really hope that Sean and Fiona stay together they seemed as if they were a good couple and they add more drama so I hope they can work things out and stay together plus they were really happy with ecshother until towards the end

  21. Disappointed_In_Shameless_EP says:

    I must say after reading this article and the quotes from the EP I have less interest in watching this show in the future. It’s insulting to people who did ‘escape’ chaotic dysfunction and a bad upbringing and to not let OUR parents bring us down and control our futures.

    You don’t have to repeat the mistakes you see growing up unless you choose to. My father was a raging alcoholic and when i saw myself headed down that path, I stopped myself, on my own.

    It’s actually pretty stereotypically bigoted that the EP of this show feels that all the gallaghers are doomed just because of their parents. It’s nonsense and insulting, to people everywhere, and it makes me less likely to watch the show in the future.

    It probably of course means that said EP grew up with no chaos or dysfunction in a happy loving home in an upper socio economic status so she has no clue what those of us who lived chaotic dysfunction every day growing up really believe or strive for. Most of us SEE the repetition of our parents mistakes and try to avoid them – all your saying is that they’re all doomed because of their parents – which is utter and complete bollox and insulting to pretty much everyone ever who comes from a less than perfect home.

    • Nora says:

      I so agree how offensive this is – it’s like some version of social Darwinism. Also, frankly it’s just stupid and poor storytelling to reveal that you think the characters are ALL doomed to self-sabotage and tha s why it’s entertaining. What?! this is why people don’t like soap operas – story arcs never stay true to character because the show runner thinks people are only interesting when they’re like Frank. I loved this show because I felt like I knew the characters and the world throws enough -stuff- at a family like this to maintain interesting plots. Shameless was at its best showing Fiona and Lip and Ian striving to hold things together. Ian’s illness was heartbreaking and Fi falling for self deluded charmer Jimmy very believable – you could def still pull for them but now?? What’s the point. As one of 4 siblings who had similar parents and grew up in poverty, I don’t appreciate the EP somehow thinking we’re all doomed trash. A couple of siblings had brief but hard struggles for a few yrs but the others didn’t. And everyone worked to get out. Today we are a federal employee, surgical nurse, mechanic, realtor, and full time mom – with stable lives. I can no longer relate to this family – they’ve become ridiculous caricatures and these fine actors deserved better.

  22. HAP says:

    Alcoholism is genetic. If one has a parent or two who is an alcoholic, one is greatly predisposed to become one as well.

    • Disappointed_In_Shameless_EP says:

      My father was an alcoholic, i had some issues, so 15 years ago I decided to stop drinking…it’s possible that you can avoid your genetics – genetics doesn’t guarantee anything (I have a masters degree in molecular biology) genetics more often than not just makes you PRE-DISPOSED (it’s a big word people – look it up) Just because a parent was an alcohlic doesn’t mean you are (and PS – addiction is believe to be y linked, look up what that means and learn something) or have to be any more than being ‘positive’ for BRCA1 means you should chop off both your breasts immediately…should you be more vigilant, yes, should you be more aware, yes, but honestly, as a ‘guardian’ fiona failed lip by not preventing him from drinking -s he knew he drank even as a teen and didn’t say anything.

  23. Harold Budd says:

    I think baby Fran is dead. In the final episode the baby was incessantly crying with Debbie in her bedroom, they cut to Fiona and Sean in the Kitchen. Debbie’s baby starts screaming instead of crying then suddenly gets quiet. The next time we see the baby is at the wedding and Debbie is holding her head, but she isn’t making a sound. We then see Debbie without the baby saying that Carl is taking care of her. But we never see the hand off, and we don’t see Carl taking care of her.

    I think Debbie shook her baby to death. I’m not sure I can watch a show where that happens.

  24. Disappointing, but very valid. Can’t wait to see what happens. As a big Dermot Mulroney fan, I’m rooting for them.