Mickey is back, Svetlana is ousted, and Fiona gets a major offer

By Christina Ciammaichelli
December 05, 2016 at 01:39 AM EST
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Credit: Paul Sarkis/Showtime
S7 E10
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  • TV Show
network
  • Showtime

Looks like once again, a Gallagher has chosen a path that’s probably terrible for them. But then again, if the Gallaghers always made the right decisions, would we keep watching? Go ahead and ponder that question as Ian and Mickey’s long-awaited reunion unfolds, Lip continues to drink himself stupid, and Fiona considers her future with the Laundromat. Let’s dive into “Ride or Die.”

So much went down in this hour of Shameless it’s almost impossible to choose one story line to discuss, but for the first time this season, we’ll start with Ian.

In case anyone needs a refresher on how things ended for Gallovich (I sort of did): After years of a passionate love/hate relationship, season 5 centered around Mickey trying to come to grips with Ian’s bipolar diagnosis. In the season 5 finale, Ian broke up with Mickey because Ian felt he did not need to be “fixed” with medication. Mickey was also sent to prison for eight to 15 years after attempting to kill Sammi (to help Ian). In the beginning of season 6, Ian couldn’t bear to see Mickey in jail, but finally visited him at Svetlana’s behest. There, Mickey asks Ian to wait for him and he agrees, but didn’t exactly stick to his promise, as we’ve seen over the last two seasons.

In the wake of episode 9’s news that Mickey Milkovich broke out of jail, Ian is left feeling shaken. He can’t stop thinking about Mickey and feels weird around Trevor. Ian leaves for work the next day and bumps into a stranger on the street, who drops a mysterious cell phone. Ian answers it and hears Mickey’s voice on the other end, giving him a meeting spot and telling him to dispose of the phone in the sewer.

Ian goes into work but can’t focus, so he fakes being sick and leaves. He goes to the spot Mickey told him, where Ian is kidnapped by three guys and thrown in a van. He’s driven to another location, a football field, where Mickey finally appears from under the bleachers.

Ian is, of course, furious (a lot of emotions are running through him) and instantly shoves Mickey for the whole kidnapping scenario. Mickey explains his cellmate (who’s nearby) helped him get out and is protecting him for the time being. He also tells Ian he’s going to head for Mexico and hopes Ian will think about going with him. Mickey leaves Ian another cell phone through which he’ll contact him.

That evening, Ian seeks advice from Fiona. He asks her if she ever regrets not running off with Jimmy/Steve, considering what her life could have been if she had. She says she thinks about it all the time, but ultimately thinks she dodged a bullet and doesn’t regret her decision. She tells Ian not to fall for the “thrill” with Mickey, reminding him how much he’s turned his life around without Mickey and how proud she is of him.

Ian thinks about Fiona’s advice (for like three seconds) and goes to meet Mickey at another secret spot. Here, in the darkness, they finally kiss again. Ian briefly tries to resist the temptation, mentioning he has a boyfriend, but eventually succumbs to his feelings for Mickey. They have sex and spend the night in a van (literally) down by the river.

NEXT: Ian’s decision

Ian panics when he wakes and leaves Trevor a message, apologizing and saying he misses him. Mickey asks Ian if he’s going to see him again, and Ian (giddily) kisses him goodbye.

Ian continues to feel conflicted — about his clearly strong (and more exciting) feelings for Mickey and his desire to keep living his somewhat normal, sane, safe life with Trevor. However, in the final scene of the episode we see Ian going to meet Mickey again. Mickey says, “Is this goodbye?” and in classic Gallagher-doing-what’s-worst-for-them fashion, Ian throws his bag in the car and says “Let’s ride.”

It seems like Mickey is already falling victim to a special kind of over-villainizing that sometimes happens in a long-running show, often when the writers need to find a way to work an actor out of the story. In Shameless, this happened once with Jimmy/Steve, Fiona’s ex. Sure, much can be said about Jimmy/Steve’s instability and constant lies, but you can’t deny he truly loved Fiona and took good care of the rest of the Gallaghers, too. In recent seasons, they’ve painted him to be this horrible, destructive-beyond-reason character, a characterization that never really fit with what we saw on screen. Perhaps I’m blinded by my undying ship for Fiona and Jimmy/Steve, but let’s not forget how selfish and terrible Fiona was to him, too.

Now the same can be said for Mickey and Ian. Both Mickey and Ian are extremely complex (and beautifully portrayed) characters, but you can’t deny Mickey’s true love for Ian in season 5. He went to great lengths to try to please Ian (his formal coming out and denial of his father, for example), and then went even further as he tried desperately to handle a difficult situation he couldn’t punch his way out of (Ian’s illness). Mickey doesn’t always do what’s best or legal, but he’s shown serious love and dedication to both Ian and their relationship.

So, it seemed a bit harsh (and selfish) for Fiona’s only reaction to Ian’s feelings is to tell him “Mickey will ruin everything.” Sure, Ian has come a long way with Mickey out of the picture, but he’s also gotten his disorder under control (a huge part of Gallovich’s downfall) and took other steps to better himself, like finding a stable job he’s good at. Who’s to say things wouldn’t work out between them now, when they’re both a bit more mature? (Of course, yes, Mickey is technically “on the run,” which isn’t a good start. But it’s unfair to paint him as the sole reason Ian’s life may have been a mess before) Anyway, moving on…

Fiona Gets Rich

Elsewhere this episode, we see Fiona get the proposition of a lifetime from Margo. Margo already owns the building that houses the Laundromat and wants to buy the lease from Fiona. Margo spends most of the episode lowballing Fiona — first offering her the $80,000 she paid for the lease, then $90,000, then $100,000. Fiona thinks hard about the offer, considering just how long it’ll take for her to turn that kind of profit on her own. She’s also concerned about Debbie, who’s enjoying her employment at “the mat,” and Etta, whom she’s promised could comfortably stay in her home there.

After ultimately deciding not to sell, Margo tells Fiona she’s smarter than she looks. Margo offers her $160,000, twice what Fiona paid for the lease, to take the Laundromat off her hands.

This proves to be an offer she can’t refuse. After this, Fiona decides to try to reconcile with V.

V spends most of this episode furious and heartbroken by Svetlana (more on that later), burning her clothes and threatening to kill her. By the end of the episode — when Fiona feels just as stuck — the two sit on V’s steps and unload about all the questionable decisions they’ve made recently, agreeing to never ice each other out like this again.

NEXT: What everyone else was up to

Lip is once again spiraling downward. He’s drinking heavily, falling asleep on the L and showing up to work possibly still loaded. Fiona calls him out and tells him to go home, which he takes as an opportunity to do more drinking. Eventually, he wakes up in a pile of glass on Helene’s living room floor. He managed to break in and Helene comes down to see him in the dark, hammered and confused. She begs him to get over everything and get help. At the end of the episode, he seems to be trying to do just that.

The dynamic between Lip and Fiona has completely changed now, too. Considering her huge offer from Margo, Fiona could not have her sh-t more together — and Lip could not be falling apart any more.

Frank and Monica are shacking up with poor Neil and Debbie and, of course, wreaking havoc. Debbie gives them the ground rules of staying there, but she’d be crazy to think they’d abide by them. Monica is determined to make some money she can leave the kids before she dies, so she and Frank cook up various plans to try to steal money (and drugs) from unsuspecting people. Ultimately, they use Neil to stage an accident and rob a bus full of senior citizens going to a casino. When they give Neil his cut of their take, Debbie demands Frank give Neil more money and then kicks them out of her house.

Debbie proved how smart she can be, helping Fiona turn more of a profit by upcharging at the Laundromat. Debbie and Fiona also proved to themselves how well they can get along…when they want to.

Svetlana apparently took over The Alibi by getting V and Kev to sign documents they thought were adoption papers. While this was a pretty next-level betrayal — and deeply conniving — Svetlana isn’t wrong. Kevin and V were managing The Alibi poorly, which ultimately would have affected all of them. Svetlana had already been handling the business end of things for some time, which Kev and V were naive enough to let her take on. So, in her opinion, putting herself in charge made things easier and cheaper in the long run.

Kev tries to reason with Svetlana, but sees he and V are between a rock and a hard place. They’re either out of jobs or have to work for her. Fiona tells Kev to talk to the lawyer who got her out of her marriage. Kev meets with the lawyer, who convinces him he has a case against Svetlana; however, he must pay a $2,000 retainer fee.

Which was your favorite part of this episode? The Gallovich reunion? Fiona’s big payout? V and Fiona finally reuniting? Let us know in the comments!

Honorable Mentions

  • “You might want to ease back on your Stalin-style homecare.” —Frank after hearing Debbie’s house rules
  • “Those kids don’t need an inheritance, it’ll ruin ‘em!” —Frank
  • “What do we tell the cops when they see our names on the forms, that we’re idiots?” —Kevin (and to answer his question, yes)
  • “You know it’s the third time those cops have come down this block? Some f-ckery’s going on. Must be the Italians.” —Etta
  • “How’d it go at The Alibi? She dead yet?” —V, heartbroken over Svetlana’s betrayal
  • “You want to piss away every single chance that comes your way, including this job, that’s your business, but don’t drag me into it.” —Fiona getting stern with Lip when he shows up drunk at Patsy’s (You go, girl!)
  • “A boyfriend, huh? Whatcha doing here, then?” —Mickey (making a great point)
  • “This is nothing but a condom to keep you away from the people of this community!” —Frank, angry about the presence of bulletproof glass at the check-cashing place he was trying to rob
  • Frank: “Can’t separate Frank and Monica, we’re like Desi and Lucy, Barack and Michelle, Sonny and Cher…”

    Debbie: “I only know who like, two of those people are!”

  • “Why do you smell like death and beer?” —Neil to Frank.
  • “How about we agree to never be self-absorbed c-nts to each other ever again?” —Fiona to V (agreed)

Episode grade: A

Episode Recaps

Shameless

type
  • TV Show
seasons
  • 9
episodes
  • 103
rating
  • TV-MA
network
  • Showtime
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