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The Frank Character Detail That Has Shameless Fans Scratching Their Heads

No television series has managed to take quite as authentic a look at poverty as Showtime's Shameless. The inability of Frank Gallagher (William H. Macy) to hold down a job as a result of his various addictions has trickled down to his numerous children. Not only do they have to fight twice as hard to barely get by on scraps, but they've inherited their share of problems from their parents, either indirectly or directly from Frank himself. While a standard Shameless episode sees the Gallagher patriarch getting into some wacky mishaps, such as waking up in Canada after a bender or starting his own homeless shelter, occasionally he's lived up to the show's title with some truly despicable acts. 

Sure, there are times when Frank seems to really love his kids, but much of the time, he only uses them as a means to an end. He shaves Carl's (Ethan Cutkosky) head and lies about a cancer diagnosis so that he can take advantage of Make-a-Wish benefits, and he tries to turn a profit when Ian (Cameron Monaghan) has a manic episode and believes he's a reincarnation of Jesus Christ. These actions may leave a bad taste in your mouth, but at least most viewers could maybe, kind of, see where Frank was coming from.

Then there are the Frank moments that have left audiences scratching their heads. Even when Frank's too inebriated to know what he's doing, the following details just don't quite add up.

Many fans don't understand why Frank would call CPS on Fiona and ruin her wedding

Frank's done a lot of awful things on Shameless, but there's usually a method behind the madness. Whether it's to get some money or just more booze, he typically wants something out of the people he messes with. Then there's Fiona (Emmy Rossum), who's often found herself on the wrong end of Frank's schemes for seemingly no good reason.

This dynamic can be seen in season 3 when Frank calls Child Protective Services on the Gallagher household after he gets kicked out, which forces all of the kids under the age of 18 to go into foster homes. One could argue he wasn't in a good state of mind (he rarely is), but even so, there's no clear endgame with this action. As much as he might say he wants to be around his kids, his actions tell another story. If anything, Fiona was doing him a huge favor by becoming the de facto adult at the Gallagher home, giving him more time to get plastered at the Alibi Room.

In season 6, he again royally ruins Fiona's well-being by revealing that her fiance, Sean (Dermot Mulroney), has fallen off the wagon and started using drugs again. Again, Frank likely wasn't thinking straight and only had revenge in mind. Maybe you could look at it as though Frank did her a favor by not getting tangled up with a drug addict (although Sean got clean later). But combined with everything else, it really seems like Frank has it out for his eldest daughter. 

Maybe it's a result of Frank raising her the most and never respecting her boundaries. Perhaps Frank can't stand to see Fiona doing better in life than him and drags her into the mud whenever he can. Looking at all this, it makes sense why Fiona had to leave in season 9.