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‘Shameless’ Season 5 Episode 10 Recap: “South Side Rules”

shameless south side rules

In case you’re not up to date on the craziness that is this show, here’s what happened in the past few episodes of Shameless: Debbie has gotten a boyfriend, Chuckie and Carl have been shipped off to juvenile hall for possessing heroin, Ian finally got treatment for bipolar disorder and found a job as a busboy, Fiona got rid of Jimmy but is having marital problems with Gus, Lip has been selling drugs with Kev (who split up with V for a while) at school, and Sammi is getting kicked out of the Ghallagher house.

Ian and Mickey

Ian’s life on lithium sucks. He can’t get aroused, can’t think straight, and can’t seem to feel anything. While at work at Patsy’s Pies, the same diner Fiona also works at, we see him going through life in a haze. Everything appears to be in slow motion. Ian just wants to feel something, and he wants it so bad he goes and burns his hand on the griddle in the kitchen. It is assumed he leaves work early because of his injury, and when he arrives home, Sammi offers to tend to his blistered palm. Ian jokes that the burn on his right hand now matches his left, and when Sammi asks where he got his other burn from, he tells her about his military days of hot-wiring a helicopter and going AWOL.

Later that day, Ian and Mickey go out to the same baseball field they had sex on a while back. Only this time, they end up getting into a huge physical fight. The reason? Ian hates that Mickey is taking care of him while he is coping with his disorder. He wants Mickey’s old thug self back. So they get in a huge bloody fight over it, but quickly make up afterwards when Ian admits that their fight was the most he’d “felt” in a while. Apparently burning his hand on the griddle had not been enough. So the two of them make up and have sex on the field again, and as they’re walking home, the two decide to clean up and go on a “real” dinner date together.


Fiona finds out she’s got her hands full when she temporarily moves back home. The Ghallager household is going to shambles as Sammi stops taking care of business. The water got shut off because the bill wasn’t paid, the milk went bad, and the fridge is in desperate need of groceries. On top of that, she needs to check up on Gus’s apartment and water his plants while he goes on tour. She looks around the apartment in sadness, and it’s clear that she misses him and what they had when they got married a short while ago. The two haven’t exactly reconciled after her incident with her ex-boyfriend, Jimmy. Fiona calls Gus to check up on him during his tour. The two go back and forth about their feelings, but they both agree to have a sexy Skype date that night.

Fiona is excited for her Skype date with Gus, but ends up waiting too long. She decides to call her manager and former crush, Sean out of boredom. She finds out through their conversation that he is stressed because his ex-wife is coming to pick up their son Will’s toys and things from his apartment for her move to Pittsburgh. Fiona decides to ditch her Skype date and support Sean. As she arrives to his place, she is greeted by his ex-wife, Nicole, who tells Fiona that she appreciates her helping Sean get through this. Fiona is shocked to discover that Sean has even been telling Nicole about her. Nicole also tells Fiona she regrets having to take Will away from Sean (who legally can’t leave the state of Illinois), but needs the new job because of better benefits and pay.

After they watch Nicole and Will drive away, the two go out and have Cokes at a bar. They get into an argument about Fiona’s motives to help Sean, and old skeletons in the closet come back out from the time when the two had some major drama together. In short, Sean didn’t want to date Fiona because he thought she wasn’t “good” for him, and now the tables are turned as Fiona tries to help Sean out of the dark place he’s currently in. Sean ends up pissing off a patron and getting in a fight with him over a misunderstanding. While all of this is going on, Fiona decides to ignore a call from Gus. Fiona takes Sean out for fresh air and the two have a heart to heart and end up kissing. Dammit Fiona, not again. She just can’t have one guy at a time, can she?


So he’s fallen for Bianca, the young doctor who was diagnosed with terminal cancer last episode. He treats her better than he ever treated his own family, helping her get over a hangover and taking her out for the time of her life so she can “go out with a bang.” Bianca doesn’t feel the same about him, however, and kicks him out of her apartment.

Frank is heartbroken and goes to the Alibi and tells V and one of his friends about his problem. They tell him Bianca most likely won’t want anything to do with a bum like Frank, but he is adamant about winning her heart and demands advice. When he doesn’t get any, he angrily takes off and leaves his entire pint of beer untouched, and Frank is the type of man who never lets a drink go to waste. And he actually makes an effort to look and smell nice even though the water is shut off at their house. That’s saying something, guys.

He tries to visit her apartment again, but gets turned down by Bianca’s sister, who screams at him from Bianca’s window. He attempts to climb up the fire escape to get to another one of Bianca’s windows, but he fails and decides instead to wait outside the entrance for Bianca while sipping a bottle of vodka. Later that night, Bianca’s sister storms out of her apartment in tears as Bianca trails after her to see her off. When her sister leaves, Bianca is depressed, but begins laughing at the sight of Frank still drinking outside her apartment. She sits down next to him and explains that her sister is upset because she won’t go through chemotherapy. She argues that it isn’t “selfish” of her to not go through it, but instead strong of her to bite the bullet and finally make life what she wants it to be. She appears to have forgiven Frank now, and tells him that she wants to get tattoos. Her carpe diem mentality has come back after all!


Debbie and Derek sittin’ in a tree… You know how the rest goes. The two are head over heels for each other as they walk into the boxing gym they both are members. Debbie gives Derek the present she made him: it’s a rock (with the words “You Rock” painted on it) from the drug store that Debbie nearly got her butt kicked in front of by her back-stabbing “friends,” which was also the first time Debbie met Derek. He had been the knight in shining armor that saved her from getting beaten up. After Derek kisses her and tells her he loves her gift, he also tells her that he wants to have sex with her. Debbie at first is shocked at Derek’s statement. She hasn’t had the greatest luck in the bedroom, and ended up raping her ex-boyfriend during her last sexual encounter. But the two are nevertheless excited about taking their relationship to the next level, and they agree to do the deed in Debbie’s room after Derek’s family barbecue.

Before the barbecue, Debbie tells Fiona that she wants to go on the pill. Fiona is surprised to hear this because before then, Debbie had not wanted to go on the pill because it would prevent her from gaining muscle for boxing. Fiona picks up on where Debbie is headed with the pill, and tells her that it’s not a good idea to have sex with Derek, to which Debbie retorts: “I’ve been dating him longer than you even knew Gus before you got married.” Fiona relents and the two go to Planned Parenthood to get the pill. The doctor warns Debbie that the pill needs 48 hours to work, and that she must use “alternate protection” if she plans to get busy that day.

Debbie later goes to Derek’s barbecue and hits it off with his very big family. She strikes up conversation with one of Derek’s sister-in-laws, who tells Debbie how she dropped out of school because she got pregnant. She goes on to tell Debbie that she never had a happy family life, but when she had her son, Derek’s family took her in as their own. Debbie, who is in the same boat as his sister-in-law, is inspired by her story and gets a rather bad idea.

The two of them go to Debbie’s that night, and when Derek pulls out a condom, Debbie stops him and tells him she is on the pill. Even though she is obviously aware that the pill hasn’t kicked in yet, she thinks that getting pregnant will make her closer to Derek and his family. I smell drama…

Lip and Kev

Turns out Lip’s professor, Helene, and her husband have some kind of weird “hall pass” rule. But as weird as it is, Lip seems to be liking it. He gets awesome food (her husband is a great cook) and sex. This little arrangement gets in the way of Lip’s relationship with his girlfriend Amanda, however. She visits Lip in his dorm room and asks him if he wants to hook up with her later that night, and Lip reveals the affair he’s having with his professor. Even though she’s been sleeping with her female roommate, Amanda is still upset when Lip turns down her sexual invitation. While she’s not crying-and-screaming angry, it’s obvious that she’s pissed off. She leaves Lip alone to study, but not before telling him she wants her BMW back, which she has so kindly been letting Lip borrow.

Kev is still living in the dorms, selling drugs and having a good time. But when he sells a bunch of college kids really cheap weed, bad things start to happen. Turns out, the stuff he sold them was “Spice,” a terrible synthetic marijuana that makes the user hallucinate and lose their mind. The halls begin teeming with undergrads tripping out on the stuff. Many are on the floor having seizures and others are walking into walls “trying to find portals.” Lip and Kev round up all the students and quarantine them in Lip’s dorm room while they wait for the effects to wear off. The two are deathly afraid of calling 911 and fear getting caught, so they decide it’s best to wait it out. Joaquin (the computer hacking extraordinaire from last episode) is tripping balls and starts claiming he’s made of fire and can fly. He jumps out the window while Lip and Kev’s backs are turned, and the two are initially shocked and horrified at Joaquin’s condition, but are relieved to find out he’s alive when he hollers up: “Oh shit! I think I broke my rhinoceros!” No, Joaquin, you just ended up breaking your leg.

Lip panics and takes Joaquin to Helene’s house, thinking her husband, Dr. Wallace, can help fix Joaquin’s leg. Turns out, her husband is a doctor of theology, and cannot in fact keep Lip and Kev out of deep shit. Helene ends up calling 911, and Lip freaks out and tells her what’s at stake for him and Kev. Helene tells him she will lie about how she found Joaquin in his condition, but also tells Lip he needs to get over his “south side rules” nonsense. She makes him realize that he is a student with a bright future ahead of him: “Stop acting like the world is out to get you when it is so clearly dropping gifts at your feet.” In order to take advantage of that, he needs to shed his old habits and vices.

He takes Helene’s advice, and tells Kev what MIT actually means to him. He sends Kev back home and tells him to make up with V and get his family back together. Kev arrives home, sees V and the twins laying in bed together, and joins them. We’re left wondering whether he and V have made up yet or not.


Even though Mickey and Ian had a jolly good time together that day, when they come home there is a surprise in store. They walk into the Gallagher living room and find Sammi there. Sammi tells Ian that he is a good boy with a good future ahead of him, and tells the military men hiding behind the walls to arrest Ian. Mickey is in disbelief as he watches Ian struggle against the men trying to take him away. Fiona is arriving home as soon as Ian is being led out, struggling, into the car. Everyone is in complete and utter shock as the entire ordeal happens, and a few seconds before the episode ends, we see Fiona and Mickey stare at each other dumbfounded, scared, and in disbelief. Sammi is dead meat when the two of them get their hands on her. Not only did Sammi turn in Carl for sending her son Chuckie to juvie, but she also reported Ian to the military for his being AWOL.

Well, done, Shameless, well done. Just when I thought there was no more shit to go down, the writers managed to pull out more aces from under their sleeves. I officially hate Sammi again. I know what Ian did was wrong, but it all happened while he was suffering from his illness. Poor Ian! Hasn’t he gone through enough crap already?! How in the hell is he ever going to recover from his bipolar disorder when his life keeps going to shambles? I don’t think I can wait till next Sunday to find out what happens.