It’s been a long time since I’ve loved a character as much as I love Shameless‘ Frank Gallagher.
Father of six wonderfully dysfunctional children, Frank is the epitome of a bad father. He’s an alcoholic, drug addicted, absentee parent who comes and goes as he pleases. He neglects his responsibilities as a father and leaves his children alone to fend for themselves. He always takes more than he gives, and is never available to offer emotional, financial, or moral support. His actions are often vile, underhanded, and well, shameless. However, the worse his actions, the funnier he is as a character. While Frank may be a truly terrible father, there is something about him that still makes him likable. For starters, he is so incredibly fun to watch. He is hysterical, and the things he does are so outlandish that you just have to laugh. His children have come to accept his behavior, so why should I not?
To tell you the truth, when I first started watching the show, I hated Frank. He was despicable and I couldn’t wrap my head around the things he did as a father. However, in a short amount of time without you even realizing it, he works his way into your heart and makes you believe in him. I read this quote one day about the show and I thought it was so incredibly accurate because it mirrored my experience of watching the show:
That’s exactly what happens when you start watching Shameless. At first, it’s a shock to the system; but before long, you grow attached to the characters and become so emotionally invested in their story, especially Frank. No matter how many times he messes up or does something terrible, I always hold out hope that one day, the lightbulb will go off and Frank will redeem his relationship with his children. I may end up being terribly disappointed because, in 7 seasons of the show, that has yet to happen; nonetheless, Frank shows us glimpses of his kinder self throughout the series and I know the deep love he has for his family beneath that drunk exterior, so I will continue to believe that he will redeem himself in the end.
What really makes Frank so lovable is the fact that he is played by actor, William H. Macy, who brings this sense of charm to Frank that you would not expect at first glance. To say that William H. Macy’s performance as Frank is excellent is an understatement. He is exceptional. Nominated for multiple awards and recipient of two Screen Actors Guild Awards for his role in Shameless, William H. Macy is deserving of it all. He is an example of how Hollywood big-screen actors can integrate themselves into the world of television and dominate. Mr. Macy is an acting legend and his talent not only extends on the screen, but also off, as he has both written and directed episodes of Shameless. His talent is undeniable and I have high hopes for him at the Emmy’s this year because I would love nothing more than for him to win. He may be surrounded by a wonderful cast of actors that are equally as fun to watch, but William H. Macy is the face of Shameless. The show would not be what it is without him.
There are very few characters as good as Shameless’ Frank Gallagher, and there are very few actors as talented as William H. Macy.
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