'Shameless' season 9: Frank Gallagher proves there is no limit to how low he can go
Frank Gallagher is the lowest of the low when it comes to the 'Southside scum' of Chicago, and the very midseason pilot of the show's ninth installment goes on to establish that further
Spoiler Alert for 'Shameless' Season 9, Episode 8.
Showtime's hit dramedy 'Shameless' has always aced at presenting the most shocking, degenerate behavior in a manner so effortlessly lucid that it really makes one wonder if it's debauchery at all. But despite the crafty execution, there's no denying that Frank Gallagher is the lowest of the low when it comes to the 'Southside scum' of Chicago, and the very midseason pilot of the show's ninth installment goes on to establish that further.
So far, Frank Gallagher (William H. Macy) had done some pretty despicable things like having sex with his son's daughter in a drunken stupor, ruin his own daughter's wedding, and even dived into a portable potty to flee from the police after stealing. So when the teasers and promos for the second half of season 9 showed him considering having another child with his new lady-love, the erratic and bipolar Ingrid (Katey Segal), we finally thought that maybe this is his attempt at redemption. Maybe he is finally going to have a child and do all the things right that he never did for his own six children, despite it being the fact that Frank is the last person who should even think about having a child.
But in the latest episode titled 'The Apple Doesn't Fall Far From The Alibi', Frank reinstills our faith by taken his debauchery a whole level further by asking his teenage son Carl (Ethan Cutkosky) to lend him his sperm just so the not-so-fertile Frank can impregnate Ingrid. This doesn't come as a surprise if we reflect on Frank's affinity for women with psychological illnesses. In the show's past, we have seen his ex-wife and mother of his six children, Monica, as a woman diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and then there was also the agoraphobic Shiela Jackson (Joan Cusack) — both of whom were the only long term relationships Frank has been in. So him going the extra mile to keep the bipolar-Ingrid around doesn't come as a shocker.
What does manage to leave us shocked is that he is requesting his own son's sperm to go about the procedure. This comes after Frank's over-enthusiasm about having a baby is answered with the doctor's reports that Frank's sperm count is just not enough to fertilize Ingrid's eggs. Turns out all those years of drugs and drinking finally had some effect, but nothing can deter a determined Frank Gallagher's spirits. I mean, this is the man who campaigned for a registered pedophile sex offender just to enjoy perks of the campaign money, so him convincing his own son to lend him some sperm shouldn't come as a shock, right But it does, and purely so because of the absolute distasteful way he goes about the situation.
Frank pretty much manipulates Carl into masturbating into a cup, giving him the explanation that he needs the sperm fast, and he himself won't be able to do it quickly enough. And while we aren't offered much insight into Carl's thoughts on the whole scenario, the fact that the doctors didn't raise any suspicions about a barren man turning up with a reasonably satisfactory amount of sperm in such little time, is enough to leave viewers scandalized for the rest of the week.
The fact that Carl has just started military school with full focus driven at it only makes us concerned for the young boy further. Let's hope he sees the light in the next episode of 'Shameless' this coming January 27, at 9 pm, only on Showtime.