We start with a montage of the family using the bathroom. Well, separately. Hey, wait a minute! This is the same opening as last week! Poor Ian, will he ever find a place to wank in private?
If this is the show’s permanent opening, I’m a little concerned. They need to make it more memorable … maybe pay tribute to other famous show openings? Frank could walk through the door and drunkenly trip over a footstool, a la The Dick Van Dyke Show, or Lip could throw his spunk-encrusted boxers into the air a la Mary Tyler Moore.
Anyway, after the credits, we get to the real opening – Emmy Rossum’s bare breasts. Which I have to admit, upped the “yuck factor” for me. Not because it was bare breasts, but because it was Emmy Rossum’s bare breasts. Now, instead of the image of Emmy looking radiant while being badly wooed by Gerard Butler, all I’ll see when I look at her is two eggs … sunny side up.
On the plus side, remember last week when I wrote about hot blond cop Tony, “please let him start dating Fiona so I can see him in a sex scene?”
Tony and Fiona are in his patrol car playing a sex game of “cop and girl who’s dating a criminal.” Admittedly, it’s not a stretch. Tony is just about to “read her her rights,” when the church doors across the street burst open. The police car is soon besieged by a horde of ravenous zombie children, in a desperate attempt to rip-off timeslot rival The Walking Dead.
As Tony and Fiona struggle to dress, the children demand to be amused, so Tony flips the siren on. The church lady rushes over to move the children away, while noticing that Fiona is in the front seat of the police car. Who knew that being in the front seat of a car could lead to disapproving looks?
Meanwhile, we meet new character Mandy, who walks in to the Kash & Grab to thank Ian for coming to her rescue at school when a sleazy teacher tried to rap her knuckles with his ruler.
Of course, Ian at first assumes that the hand moving up his inner thigh is that of his married boss Kash.
Ian does his best to give her the brush-off, but it’s obvious that this is not going to end well. Mandy is one of those girls who craves attention from boys, and will turn any act of kindness or any perceived slight into psychotic teen drama.
If she had a guitar, she’d be Taylor Swift.
Oh c’mon … it’s a joke!
Frank is at Sheila’s house, enjoying her mental-hospitality when Lip knocks on the door wanting to see Karen. There was some back and forth in last week’s comments section about the character of Frank, and whether TPTB wanted us to love him, hate him, love to hate him, or hate to love him.
At the end of this scene, I just wanted to punch him. But with love.
Ian and Kash leave the back of the store and share a passionate kiss, but as Ian walks away, smiling, he comes across Mandy, who’s been waiting for him all this time (but luckily didn’t see the kiss).
“You Belong With Me” “you miss me?” and admits that she’s there to walk him home.
We cut to the two of them on the Gallagher family couch, in a scene dripping with painful awkwardness. Mandy tries to move closer, prompting Ian to stand up and off her another beer. As he walks to the kitchen, Mandy starts kicking Carl, urging him to leave so she and Ian can be alone.
Carl gets up, flips her both birds, and as he walks out tells Ian, “enjoy getting herpes.”
Mandy wastes no time in trying to jump Ian’s bones, but is soon seen running from the house in humiliation, her watermelon Lip Smackers unable to get a rise out of him.
Speaking of lip smackers, the next morning we get a scene of Kev’s bouncing bare buns as he shuffles into the kitchen to make breakfast. Unfortunately, his attempt to put bread in the toaster fails miserably. Because there is no toaster,.
He calls Veronica, who tells him that the Gallaghers borrowed it. “How can you borrow a toaster?” he bellows, as Veronica prepares that evening’s dessert of gelato under glass.
Steve shows up just in time for family breakfast, but he insists he’s not there to see Fiona, he’s actually brought hockey tickets for Ian to use. Ian says he wants either Phillie or Edmonton, and Kev (who came over to use his toaster), shouts out, “That’s good. The Flyers are a bunch of fags!”
Lip’s eyes widen, while Ian just lets it roll off.
Fiona has bigger problems, though, Not only has everyone now found out that she slept with Tony (thanks to a flower delivery), but the gas has been shut off, meaning the house is a freezer, and there’s no way to cook.
She still has it better than Sheila, though, as she decided that this is the day, dammit. This is the day she’s going to leave the house and walk to the store. She even has a “list” of things to get, which judging by how many years she’s spent trying to do this, probably includes a Reggie Bar, a pair of Hammer pants, and a Cabbage Patch Doll.
She takes her list and starts moving towards the door, while muttering, “put one foot in front of the other.” I know what you’re thinking, but I am not going to make a Winter Warlock reference.
Damn, I just did.
Sheila opens the door and steps outside, and is immediately barraged by a Sam Raimi-esque series of loud noises and crashing sounds. She flees back inside.
Sheila’s disappointed that she couldn’t do it this time, but Frank offers to help out. He grabs the money (almost forgetting the list), and heads out to do the grocery shopping.
At the Gallagher house.
In a scene that I had to admire for sheer chutzpah, Frank comes home and starts filling a grocery bag with food from around the house, much of it partially consumed. He waters down the milk til it’s full, pours glasses of Sunny D back in the container, and I’m surprised he didn’t scrape the toast and put it back in the bread bag. Oh, wait, he might have.
After Frank leaves with his groceries, Tony shows up to talk to Fiona about what happened in the police car. It turns out that not only was last night Tony’s first time with her, it was his first time ever. With anyone. Period.
Veronica can’t believe that Fiona popped his cherry, and asks if it was a “mercy f**k.” Yeah, like this guy needs someone’s mercy.
We get to the meat of tonight’s episode when a woman investigating Social Security fraud knocks on the door. She wants to talk to Aunt Ginger, but Fiona informs her that her aunt is in a nursing home in Wisconsin. Uh-oh. The woman tells her that someone has been cashing Ginger’s checks without her consent. Gee, I wonder.
Meanwhile, Ian is stocking shelves when he’s visited by Mandy’s three hideous, morally corrupt siblings, or as I refer to them, The Kardashian Brothers.
They’re on the warpath for Ian for, “messing with our sister.” They rush into the store, but Ian (who’s become an expert at escaping from tense situations) runs into the storeroom. Kash tells them that Ian probably ran out the back, and when they leave he locks the front door.
Kash tells Ian the coast is clear, but this is obviously not the last time we’ll see T.K.B.
Fiona finds Frank at The Alibi and asks him about Aunt Ginger. Frank shrugs it off, saying he’ll get her there in the morning in time to see the federal official who’ll be stopping by to interview her.
After Fiona leaves, Frank becomes frantic, realizing he’s in deep trouble now. He rushes over to the neighborhood mission, but is denied entry due to an “incident” that happened at Christmas with a Salvation Army kettle.
Ian catches up with Mandy and asks her why she told her brothers that he attacked her, but she refuses to answer to him and walks away, Meanwhile, Fiona and Steve (who are quickly rivaling any non- Kevin and Scotty pairing on Brothers & Sisters for the title of “most boring Sunday prime time couple”) chat about chicken burritos and the fact that Steve kidnapped her dad.
Lip and Karen are walking down the street when they run into T.K.B., who inform him that because Ian has been dodging them all day, Lip will have to take his beating for him. And just I recognized who the lead brother is. It’s the guy who was on
And why are the brothers so filthy? Do they live in a coal mine?
Steve explains to Fiona that he’s wanted to have sex, but the girls were all either too drunk or Catholic. As they’re talking, Lip limps home, his face a bloody mess. As Veronica tends to his wounds, he asks who the guy in drag is.
What guy in drag? Oh, the drunk guy Frank dressed up to pretend to be Aunt Ginger. Seriously. Yes, this guy will fool the federal official. If they meet in a Benny Hill skit.
Fiona decides the only solution is to drive all night and bring Ginger home, but Frank says it’s probably not a good idea. Why? Because Ginger died 12 years ago.
But at least she went out in style.
Thankfully, Veronica has a solution. They’ll just “borrow” an old lady from the nursing home where she works.
T.K.B. are waiting outside of Kash & Grab, but they still can’t find Ian. As Kash is about to leave in his van, they tell him that Ian’s days are numbered, and eventually they’ll catch up to him.As soon as they’re out of sight, Kash tells Ian (who’s been hiding in the van) that they’re gone. Ian says, “this wouldn’t have happened if I just had sex with her.” Kash tells him, “you can’t be what you’re not.” Ian rolls his eyes and says, “shut up. You are!” Kash explains that he didn’t know he was gay until after he got married, and Ian says, “from now on, i’m just going to be straight.”
Kash shakes his head and says, “it’s not that easy.” Ian reminds him , “you do it.” But as Kash points out, he does it for his kids, and Ian shouldn’t complicate his life any more than he has to.
Meanwhile, “Aunt Ginger” comes home from the nursing home, and we get a montage of the family trying to teach her how to be somewhat lucid, or at least coherent. It doesn’t go well. but they’ll have to make do.
Steve drops by with a peace offering – the hockey tickets for Ian. Unfortunately, Ian may not be able to attend. T.K.B. are stalking the Gallagher house, waiting for a chance to jump him.
Ian and Lip have another nice scene together. Ian explains that Mandy started screaming and crying when he wouldn’t respond to her advances, and Lip tells him that she may not be used to guys turning her down.
He also helpfully suggests that, “maybe you should throw it in her. It’ll call her brothers off.” Ian counters with, “yeah, and maybe you should throw it in Kash.” Lip plays along and asks if Kash has been asking about him, and Ian jokes “yeah, he’s trying to go through all the Gallagher brothers.”
Lip responds, “cool,” but then tells Ian that eventually he’ll have to accept a beatdown. Ian nods his head and says ’I know.”
The next morning, the family is eating breakfast and preparing for Ginger’s debut, but Lip realizes that Ian has taken matters (and the family bat) into his own hands. He rushes out and creeps up as Ian hides behind some garbage cans, waiting for T.K.B. to come out.
They plan their strategy (which mostly consists of hitting someone over the head and then running like hell), when Ian sees Mandy walk out of the house. He follows her, and when she tells him “my brothers are going to kill you,” and starts running away, he shouts out, “I’m gay!.”
The official comes to visit, and Ginger doesn’t disappoint, with non sequiturs and ramblings to each question asked. Frank leans back and smiles, knowing he got away with it.
Knowing that Ian is gay completely changes Mandy’s mindset. They walk and talk about boyband members who may be gay, and Mandy says “how do I know you’re not just saying this so I’ll call my brothers off?” Ian tells her, “I’m just not wired that way,” and proves his gay mettle by putting his hand on her chest, and putting her hand on his unit. When she realizes that there’s no reaction, she believes him.
He explains that she and Lip are the only people who know, and she promises to keep his secret.
Now friends, Mandy tells Ian that she’ll pretend to be his girlfriend at school so no one will give him a hard time (maybe they can even make a movie with that premise), and it’ll also keep the creeps away from her. Besides she’s never had a real boyfriend before. Someone she could, “actually do stuff with, instead of just getting fingerbanged all the time.”
The Ginger plan goes off without a hitch, although they say they’ll check back every six months. After the officials leave, they dump her back at the nursing home, traumatizing poor little Debbie, who will add teardrops to her next batch of Swiss Cake Rolls.
The episode ends with Fiona deciding not to accept Tony’s offer of dinner with his mother, and instead showing up at Steve’s chop shop, and Ian and Mandy relaxing on his bed, now BFF’s.
I love everything with ian and Lip. Their conversations (usually about one an episode) are the highlight for me.
I also like the Ian and Mandy relationship, but I wonder if the show will let it progress and grow, or if it’s just a one-shot deal.
The sitcom stuff with Aunt Ginger just didn’t work for me. All I kept thinking was, “she so could have been played by Mrs. Roper.
I still want to punch Frank in the face.
What did you think?