Jan 15, 2016

After The Heat. 'Shameless' On Toddler Time.

Chances are that if you are anywhere in New South Wales right now, you'll be looking out at today's heavy rains wearing something long sleeved and trying to reconcile today with the heat of yesterday.  This weather, it's driving me crazy!  Though it is nice that the rain's fixed that oppressive blanket of hot humid air that was plaguing us all yesterday.  If you had the misfortune of being at work outdoors yesterday, I hope your employer was kind and responsible and that you're in good shape today.

When running through the sprinklers on your lawn at home just isn't going to touch a 30C morning...

My strategy for yesterday's heat was water.  To be in it, close to it and to drink as much of it as possible.  We started the day at our favourite indoor aquatic centre.  Sprints through the sprinklers, as many turns as possible on the water slide and lots of simply enjoying the water - it was the perfect thing to start the day.  An added bonus for me was how cool my head of thick, wet hair kept me cool for the rest of the day's activities.

Netflix.  I'm late to the game (as usual) but making up for it with my relentless questioning of everyone I know with regards to what I should be binge watching (for want of a better term).  'Binge' for me currently equates to about 28 minutes on a good day divided into three or four time slots around dinner time, bath and toilet time, book time and bed time.  The toddler's, naturally.  Which means it's going to take me around a month to finish season one of my current obsessions... Shameless.  I did try Making A Murderer on the first day I signed up, you pretty much have to, I suppose because the programme is practically synonymous with Netflix here in Australia but nah, wasn't my thing.  The accents, the premise, the people ... just couldn't get into it.


But there's something about Shameless.  Quite a few things actually that have me hooked in a way I haven't been with anything on television for quite some time.  William H Macy is predictably brilliant as the self righteous and brittle alcoholic patriach (in name only) of the Gallagher family. Emmy Rossum plays his eldest daughter Fiona who has given up so much of her own personal fulfillment to be mum, dad, major breadwinner and voice of reason to her siblings as well as her dad.  Somehow, through all the challenges that Fiona has to overcome for her family,  she manages to find love with Jimmy (Justin Chatwin) and it is their tumultuous relationship that has kept me watching.

Shameless was originally a British series and is one of those unique projects that has managed to survive its translation for the US market without suffering heavily for it.  Casting is perfect, nothing feels clunky or poorly transplanted from the original and it maintains a delicate balance between comedy and drama.  It's gritty, dark, bleak at times, hilarious but always very real.

In the words of Paul Abbott, creator of the original series, "It's not My Name Is Earl or Roseanne. It's got a much graver level of poverty attached to it. It's not blue collar; it's no collar."  The poverty of Shameless shapes each character from the decisions they make, the way the rest of society views them and the way they look on screen.  Nothing about having so little financially is glossed over in Shameless.  Instead, what is emphasized is just how much each of the Gallaghers have in terms of their unity and love for each other.  Even if it does at times appear misguided and just plain wrong to the rest of us.


  1. I finally watched Gossip girl ... so many years after it was the IT show on netflix. HAHAHA!

  2. I also have a toddler!
    TV watching becomes almost non-existent, I have managed to sneak in Master of None (netflix) the episodes are 1/2hr so I can watch one or 2 before I crash!


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