Fiona Gallagher is in the difficult position of being the oldest Gallagher child, so most of the responsibility and child-rearing falls on her young shoulders. This is due to the fact that her father Frank Gallagher is a drunk and doesn't have any responsibility or maturity and doesn't know how to be a father. This blossoming young woman takes it all in stride as she has clearly been doing it for a long time. She is shown to be a hard-worker and has had a few dead-end, minimum wage jobs to bring in money to help support her and her family. She's generally responsible, honest and loyal with a good personality. She's also shown to have a wild side and enjoys going out drinking and dancing with her sexy best friend and neighbor, Veronica. Fiona suffers from insecurity and feels less-than adequate when it comes to men, especially when cute, privileged Steve comes into her life.
Throughout the Seasons
During Season 2, Fiona was running a daycare to raise money for the "squirrel fund." While riding on the L Train, she also found a purse containing about $500 in cash. She looks around at first and does not lose sight of her goal, and simply calls a guy to get her out of her trouble. When the train stops at a station just as a man was about to leave, he warned Fiona about leaving the purse unattended, unaware that the purse belongs to someone else. She treated her family to a buffet of food with the money she found and called Kim, the owner of the purse. Lip tells Fiona "no reward, no purse." She went and gave her back the purse and Kim was going to give some money to Fiona as a reward, but Fiona refused. Kim insisted, but found no money. Fiona claimed that she found no money and felt guilty after she heard of the woman's situation and that she had children. She told Kim that she had to work and left. Kim was delighted that Fiona was a good person for returning the purse because most people would not return anything. Fiona came back later to give her the money to compensate Kim, but when she arrived Kim was upset and that she accused Fiona of taking the money (which she did). The two argue and Fiona leaves.
Around this time she slept a guy from high school named Craig. He was married and his wife Lucy Joe Heisner confronted Fiona while carrying her daughter in a pouch. She chased Fiona through the house and then into the streets. Some time later in the episode, Fiona and Debbie are shopping when a vehicle drives by and Lucy sticks her torso out of the vehicle and throws a chocolate drink at Fiona and yelling "slut!" Debbie reacted by asking if she knew Craig was married. Fiona responds with saying "at least it's chocolate."
After a party Sheila threw for Karen, Debbie tells Fiona that Steve's real name is Jimmy Lishman. At first, Fiona was not sure whether to believe her but she decided to test the truth and meet Steve. She called him "Jimmy" to test his reaction and was hurt when she realized it was true and he had lied about himself.
Fiona takes a job position at a market store when she begins to slowly trust Jimmy. Eventually, she quits her position after requesting for a day off work when Frank pulls a scheme in hopes to get a room in the house after his kids threw him out. While her manager permitted Fiona to take the day off work to help her family, he informed her that he wanted a blow job in exchange. She had enlist Veronica to wear a "tit cam" to exposed him. After the children are taken away, she takes the time to look for them after the manager did not want to allow her do so. Fiona finds them eventually after an attempted at the social services office. She then asked the worker who called, and the worker due to violation rule only told Fiona that it was a man who called. The worker secretly let Fiona hear the tape. She found out it was Frank and is set to send him to court for a parental rights suit.
She fights for custody but decides to settle with becoming the legal guardian of the children. Frank has been banned from the house according to Fiona. She finds a job and settles into it. Things are going smoothly until Jimmy decides he wants to go back to medical school. Fiona gets a call on Jimmy's phone about a studio apartment in Michigan were Jimmy had decides to go back to to finish. Fiona gets upset, and the couple argues outside of Jimmy work site. Both went their separate ways. The next morning Fiona tries to cope with what happen with her and Jimmy, and despite her frustration she gets everyone ready for camp. While there she tries to have sex with her boss, but stops. She later decides to give a call to Jimmy and leaves a message.
She continues to call Jimmy and leaves him messages. She starts a new sales department and things seem to be going well at her job. She is then given a note from the guy who followed Jimmy. She tries to find out more but the guy drives off and leaves. It is also revealed that she wished Frank was dead when she went to visit him in the hospital, since her childhood was horrible because of Frank's choices. Her biggest fears is that Frank does not care about his own kids. Despite this, she throws a graduation party for Lip. She leaves a final message for Jimmy as the snow starts to fall telling him "bye". She never calls him again.
In season 4, Fiona begins dating her boss Mike. Mike openly admits to Fiona that he has trust issues and cannot be in a relationship filled with lies. Fiona agrees to this almost immediately, recalling Jimmy's betrayal. However, Fiona lies to Mike about what happened to her car's windshield, which had been bashed in by an angry commuter on her way back from a sales job. She and Mike have a fight, but they apologize to each other and continue on with their relationship. Later in the season, Mike's brother Robbie manipulates her into having sex with him, which they do multiple times. After a falling out with his family, Robbie admits to Mike that he has been sleeping with Fiona. Mike punches Robbie and tells Fiona she should leave. Later, on Fiona's birthday, Robbie gives her some cocaine as a present, which Fiona does not accept, but Robbie leaves it on the coffee table while Fiona attempts to remove him from her home by means of force. Fiona is arrested when Liam ingests the cocaine at a house party and is hospitalized. At her hearing, her bail is posted at $100,000, which Lip says they cannot pay. Thankfully though, Mike pays her bail, saying that Carl called him. He drives Fiona home. There is no one in the house when she arrives as everyone, including a dying Frank, is at the hospital where Liam is being discharged. She avoids more jail time and is put on probation, but after a wild night with Robbie and his friends, she violates probation and is put an a facility for ninety days. She is released after only a few days due to overcrowding and gets a job at a diner, thanks to her parole officer.
Fiona Gallagher has olive-toned skin and dark-brown eyes. She has a very slim body and shoulder-length brown hair. Many men (and women) see her as a very beautiful woman.
Fiona Gallagher is usually wearing shorts and a regular tee during spring and summer, or a jacket and jeans during fall and winter.
She is played by Emmy Rossum.
Behind the Scenes
- Emmy Rossum has said that playing Fiona has "brought out her ballsier side," and she can also relate to Fiona's need to take care of everyone. Emmy Rossum also likes that she does not have to be "all glam" on the show Shameless.
- Emmy Rossum has also said "I love her fierce loyalty to her family. I love the extremities of the situations that this family is in and the outrageous stuff that they let us do. We're lucky enough to be on a network that encourages that. I loved the opportunity to work with Bill [William.H.Macy]. I love that the character shows such duality. She's so strong, but has this vulnerability underneath. I thought she was very much a modern woman."