‘Shameless’: Gallagher Clan Tackles Pandemic in Final Season

Popular dramedy Shameless is coming to an end after 11 seasons, similar to the original UK series. Initially slated to air in the summer of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic delayed filming until September. Therefore, the writers were able to edit the script where they include effects of the novelty virus on the Gallagher clan and southside of Chicago.

Actor William H. Macy attends the celebration of the 100th episode of Showtime's "Shameless"
Actor William H. Macy attends the celebration of the 100th episode of Showtime’s “Shameless” | Michael Tullberg

Where did ‘Shameless’ season 10 leave off?

During the season finale, beloved couple Mickey and Ian finally tied the knot, which proved no easy task as Mickey’s father gave it his all to make sure they didn’t marry.

However, the Gallaghers banded together in the only way the raucous clan can to guarantee the two walked down the aisle husband and husband. Lip had a difficult time adjusting to Tami coming home from the hospital.

Additionally, she wanted to leave the southside for Milwaulkee, where her family had a house waiting for the new family. However, Lip didn’t want to leave his siblings and rented a spot nearby without telling Tami.

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The two eventually got into an argument over it, which ended with Tami threatening to take their son to Milwaukee anyway, resulting in Lip falling off the wagon.

Despite the setbacks, Tami returned by the end of the episode to help him paint the house. Additionally, Kev and V got engaged while Debbie might be arrested for hooking up with the underaged Julie, who is now sleeping with Carl.

When does ‘Shameless’ season 11 premiere?

The trailer for the final season dropped on Nov. 17, giving viewers a first look into what they can expect to see from the hardworking family. For example, a bald and bandana-wearing Kev has reopened the Alibi, and Carl is pursuing his newfound passion for the law as a street cop.

Debbie plans on throwing “the best party ever” and eventually finds herself in bed with a new flame. She also opened a business, Debbie Does Everything, complete with a Rosie the Riveter-inspired logo.

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Additionally, Frank has an idea to “make the yards dangerous again,” and Lip seemingly complies by spraypainting “go home gentrifier” on a house. On the other hand, newlyweds Ian and Mickey attempt to address their trust issues but end up getting into a fight at the Alibi that V had to break up.

Fiona, who hasn’t appeared in the series since season 9, could return for one last hurrah. Shameless season 11 premieres Dec. 6 at 9/8c on Showtime.

How ‘Shameless’ incorporates COVID-19

A few weeks before the Shameless season 10 finale, Showtime announced they renewed the highly rated hour-long dramedy for its 11th and final season. Initially supposed to air six months later in the summer of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic delayed filming of the season until September.

Additionally, the writers wanted to include the impact of the novelty virus on the southside of Chicago. Therefore, in a TV Line interview, showrunner John Wells noted the crew went back and edited the script to incorporate effects such as the loss of jobs and “how much tougher it’s gotten for people who are already barely hanging on.”

RELATED: ‘Shameless’ Showrunner John Wells Says He’ll ‘Certainly Ask’ Emmy Rossum to Return for Season 11

Due to the show’s focus on satirical underpinnings, Wells found it crucial to have the Gallagher clan face the pandemic. For example, the showrunner noted that “libertarian” Frank is reluctant about wearing masks because he claims he thinks it’s “a little bit of a plot.”

However, it’s unclear if the master manipulator genuinely believes that or if he wants people to buy into his latest scheme. Viewers will have to tune into the final season to find out.