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The Absolute Worst Thing Lip Ever Did On Shameless

If the first ten seasons of Showtime's long-running family dramedy Shameless have taught us anything, it's that there are no easy rides in the South Side of Chicago. That's been especially true for the family at the center of the fray over Shameless's decade-long run on the extended cable network. In case you don't currently count yourself among the Shameless fandom, that family is the Gallaghers, a wily group of low-to-no income toughs who, over the course of the series' 122 episodes to date, have lied and cheated and kicked and screamed their way into the hearts and minds of viewers the world over.

To the surprise of even the biggest of Shameless fans, the series was recently greenlit for one more season in the sunShameless's eleventh and final season is set to air on Showtime in 2020, and fans are already beginning to ponder which of the Gallagher clan might be deemed worthy by series creators of a happy ending. Given where season 10 of Shameless left off, there's clearly no guarantee that any of the Gallaghers will ride off happily into the sunset, but if there's one in particular we're rooting for, it's Jeremy Allen White's Lip.

Out of all the Gallaghers, Lip has actually been the most consistent in terms of trying to do the right thing. After a few mighty stumbles in recent seasons, it certainly appears he's finally on the path to something not unlike happiness, having grown into his parental duties while potentially salvaging his relationship with Tami (Kate Miner). Things haven't always looked so sunny-ish for Lip, though. In fact, the character endured a fairly brutal narrative arc in Shameless' mostly fantastic sixth season. That run found Lip neck-deep in broken-hearted alcoholism, and eventually taking a baseball bat to his professor-slash-mentor's car. To date, it remains the worst thing Lip has done on Shameless

Lip had some serious issues in Shameless' sixth season

While smashing a car to bits with a baseball bat might seem a bit extreme even by Gallagher standards, it wasn't wholly out of character for Lip. In fact, the character (played with a simmering, raw-nerve vulnerability by White) has long been the poster boy for "bottle up and explode" emotionalism on Shameless. Lip's torturous season 6 arc just happened to give him more reason than ever to let things boil over.

That season found Lip firmly entrenched in his first year of college, and even more firmly entrenched in a torrid affair with his adult professor Helene (Sasha Alexander). It also saw him indulging in the sort of substance abuse the Gallaghers are renowned for. Unfortunately, Lip's blissful relationship with Helene proved tragically short-lived. The end of the affair broke him in ways that surprised even the most dedicated of Shameless fans, and signaled a downward spiral that didn't stop until he entered a rehab facility.

Lip's rehab reckoning didn't come until the season 6 finale, though. And the moments in between found him repeatedly failing to make the most of his college career. That career came to an end when Lip's boozehound of a professor (Alan Rosenberg) took him under his wing, and proved a little too much like Lip's scumbag of a father (William H. Macy's irascible Frank) than the lad could stand. After being spurned by another father figure, Lip proceeded to humiliate the man in front of his students, assault him, and do some serious damage to the prof's car with that baseball bat before being pummeled by campus security. 

The combination of misdeeds saw Lip quickly expelled from school. While it was the very same professor who finally got Lip into rehab and on the road to recovery, little could be done to salvage his educational prospects.