Here’s a joke: Frank Gallagher. There are terrible fathers, and then there is Frank. The man who single-handedly brings out self-destruction and collateral-damage all upon one family who is tired of his sh*t after seven seasons.
If you’ve been following the Gallagher family throughout the last seven seasons of Shameless, then you’ll know that the root of 90% of all their problems begin and end with one man: their father. This man is a world class alcoholic, a man who has burned through one whole liver and is onto his second, a man who is gone for days and even weeks on end due to a benders, the man who is the soul reason the Gallagher children have had to learn how to survive. With everything the Gallaghers already face, they’re never going to get ahead if their father continues to hold them back.
Addiction is a horrible thing, however I find I am less inclined to sympathize with an addict who doesn’t battle their addictions, but instead feels free to indulge in them, even at the risk of everyone around them. It is different when you consider perhaps a relapse or two, and it is quite another to not even bother taking any steps toward recovery. With Frank, this fits his personality perfectly; he feels no remorse when it comes to bringing destruction to those around him. Frank Gallagher, the reckless, selfish life-ruiner. With him, it’s easy to see that he just doesn’t give a f*ck about anyone but himself.
With all the things this character has done, it’s pretty hard to limit his self-serving, careless endeavors to just 15 of the worst moments, but here are the worst of the worst.
15. Heroine Bath
Judging by Frank’s decisions on this show, we know that Showtime has never been afraid to make his character both highly unrealistic and equally visually disgusting, but this was an all time low. After Frank had been arrested by the cops, he ends up in his family’s home after injecting too much heroine. Sheila and young Carl give themselves the unpleasant job of giving Frank, who is covered in his own filth and obviously dying, a bath.
Although this action was completely brave and selfless of the two, I’d have to side with Lip here: “Get the unconscious old sh*t out of the house. Dump him on the street, if need be, and let him die. It’s what he deserves, it’s what he brought upon himself, not because he’s an addict, but because he strives to be an addict, and to be the very best degenerate in Chicago.” You could nearly smell Frank through the TV, absolutely vile.
14. A Clammy Handy
Now, we all remember the time Monica tried to off herself at Thanksgiving in front of the entire family, but do you recall Frank’s selfish need for a handy-j as he reached an all new low (at least for that day) by ignoring Monica’s obvious need for medical attention and pyschiatric help and offering her hand for needed assistance. Now that’s matrimony.
13. Cancer Concierge
After losing Bianca, Frank’s brief partner in crime and short lived love of his life, he realizes that the only reason she was with him was because she was juggling her last few weeks. After Frank has this “ah-ha” moment (the one we all knew about) he goes back to the hospital and refers to himself as a “cancer concierge” to seek out a new lover, someone just as hopeless and helpless. He offers his services before finding a few liable candidates, but it doesn’t get him anyone as exciting as Bianca. Instead, he just fails at his new medical profession, especially in the instance when he offers crack to a dying cancer patient, who dies while inhaling the drug. Once Frank notices she’s not responding, he just grabs his coat and runs along. Just like any other typical day.
12. Aunt Ginger
Before I go off on Frank, I want to mention the less annoying Debbie Gallagher, who we really felt sorry for in this moment, when she was attached to her “Aunt Ginger” and was saddened when she left, as if she had been a real relative. It’s moments like these that really break my heart when it comes to Frank and his decisions. He doesn’t care what the cost of his actions are as long they aren’t landing him in trouble. And with this stunt, like so many others, it was all about the money. The Gallaghers are forced to choose from the (older) litter at the nursing home where V works, just to save Frank’s ass so he doesn’t get in trouble for living in a dead woman’s house and cashing a dead woman’s checks. The good thing about Alzheimer’s patients is they can keep some damn big secrets.
11. Collateral Liam
Frank’s dumbass bets $10,000 that he can take the heat from a taser. Twice. And when Frank obviously loses this insane bet, he tries to use his youngest child Liam for sympathy, but instead this guy just ends up taking the little tike as collateral. Once the rest of the Gallagher bunch finds out the news, their forced to use all their savings to “buy back” Liam. The thing that makes this so awful is that we see that it wasn’t all Frank’s fault, he had no idea this guy would take Liam, but what he did do was shrug it off as if it had no effect on him, proving again how Frank is God’s perfect asshole.
10. Collateral Opium
Now just like before, Frank get’s himself in a mess he cannot clean up and he offers something that isn’t his in exchange for the cocaine he snorted, rather than delivered. Even for Frank, this was a d*ck move. Once he takes these gangbangers to the opium plants, he just slips out the front door to make a run for it while there’s a shootout going on with the original owner of the opium and the cocaine thief enforcers. We’re coming to the realization yet again that Frank Gallagher is a scumbag who should just die already.
9. Father Of The Bride
Frank is hardly a father, but we already knew that. Frank can be known to move on from one selfish endeavor to the next rather quickly, but when he takes a run at Fiona’s new fiance, we see Frank emerge into his true self yet again. The two begin throwing punches back and fourth until Fiona is forced to kick out Frank and picks a new fight with her soon to be hubby.
Anyway, Frank does what Frank does best and sneaks back into the house when everyone is asleep and gives Sean’s toothbrush a good cleaning… with his ass. What an absolute animal that Frank is. He ends this lovely act by pissing in Sean’s boots and sleeping on the train.
This has got to be one of Frank’s absolute most disgusting moments ever. And damn, we have come across a lot of disgusting Frank moments in our time. We thought the death of Bianca might have changed Frank for the better, or maybe help him get his life on track. But when he decides he misses Bianca enough to lay out her panties and bra onto the grass next to her headstone just to fantasize about doing the dirty one last time, it had me thinking that this man is capable of a lot more than I can even give him credit for. It was a sick scene, but it was pretty funny when the gardener caught him talking dirty to himself as if Bianca was with him and sprayed him with the hose to get his “senile ass” out of the cemetery.
7. Daddy Frank
Frank’s desperate times always seem to push him to all new lows. So, when he finds out he only has a short time left unless he can get find a donor match for his failing liver (the perks of being an alcoholic drug addict), he becomes whoever he needs to be to get what he wants. He tracks down his oldest illegitimate daughter in a trailer park, charms her, and nearly f*cking sleeps with her before he reveals that they are, in fact, related. Why? So she could donate her part of her liver to him. If she had been a match, it would’ve worked too, but I’m glad she wasn’t because that might have extended the life of Frank Gallagher.
Oh god, Debbie having that baby pissed me off more than anything on this show. And Frank supporting her through it, made me even more mad. He was all pro-baby and pro-Gallagher, as if there was something absolutely divine about being a Gallagher. Not to mention he pimps Debbie out to try finding her and the baby somewhere to go while Fiona is no longer offering her support. And we don’t blame Fiona! Debbie and Frank, in these moments, had become the most selfish characters, thinking of only themselves (which is typical for Frank) by thinking the family could afford to keep a roof over another Gallagher and feed another mouth. You know you’re making the wrong choices when Frank is the only one supporting them.
5. Cancer Camp
Wow Frank… That’s nearly all I’ve got to say after he convinces his young son that he has cancer just because he thought it could get him an autographed Bulls basketball that he could sell on eBay. He goes so far as sending Carl to a camp for kids with cancer. Can you imagine?!
As I’ve said before, it’s always about the money with Frank and he doesn’t care how he gets it. And he has no problem admitting it by referring to his government scams as the “family business” or putting himself and his families lives in danger. But this, this is a new low to convince your kid he is battling cancer when he’s perfectly healthy, even for Frank Gallagher. Cheers to you Frank, you scumbag.
4. Baby Whisperer
As you can probably recall, Jody and Sheila take Karen’s baby (who has Down syndrome) when she decides she doesn’t want it and the damn thing never shuts up. So, when Debbie is faced with the easy task of looking after the guy, she just can’t seem to do it with all of his crying. She goes to the Alibi where she knows Frank will be and lets him in on what’s going on. He gives the baby something, he says it’s valium, which immediately knocks the baby Hymie right out and Frank lands another award for being a scumbag and the father of the year for helping little Hymie and Debs.
3. Wedding Crasher
Now, after the fight between Frank and Sean, no one expected Frank to show up to the wedding. But he does, and as if his being there isn’t bad enough, he completely ruins the wedding by telling Fiona about Sean’s continuing drug habits and finishes his dreadful speech by calling out every other Gallagher in the room for their faults because they won’t accept his. I did, however, applaud Lip when he sucker punched Frank right in the teeth for ruining Fiona’s big day. I am glad Fiona found out about Sean, but Frank couldn’t have picked a worse time to have told her. But what can you expect from two known junkies.
2. Out With A Bang
Frank has done a lot of f*cked up sh*t, but the time he just straight up nonchalantly sentenced “Butterface” to death and thought nothing of it, when he picked up the phone and acted as if she had already been dead, this was a low even I was convinced Frank couldn’t reach. I mean Frank’s wooing of a “butter faced” woman in need of a heart transplant was sad enough, but watching him intercept the notice and declining the offer and then screwing her to death for a couple grand and a TV was just straight up wrong. And let’s not forget that after slithering off her body, her then tugs at her wedding ring to take home before exiting the scene of the crime.
1. F*ck Frank
This is a real screw you to the heartless Frank Gallagher. This man doesn’t know how to agree to disagree or to get over things like an adult. When he calls CPS on his own children, to have them ripped away from the safe and loving home Fiona is raising them in, I think this was the moment I stopped cutting any kind of slack for Frank and went straight to hating that poor bastard. He proved he was selfish and childish enough to be willing to put his kids in danger and drag them away from their home and their family, to be placed in the system. The big f*ck you to Frank does come, however, when Fiona gets granted legal guardianship of the kids, as she’s seen as more fit to be a parent than Frank.