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Shameless Proves Power Of TV, Fans Cry Over Ian Gallagher’s Departure From Show

Whether it’s fiction or not doesn’t really matter. Watch a show for the better part of a decade and you will inevitably start to develop an emotional attachment to the characters. “Shameless” proves this in their most recent episode, which marked the departure of Ian Gallagher.

The character played by Cameron Monaghan has grown up in front of our eyes, and in season 9 of the dramedy he has been staring down the barrel of an extended prison sentence. With fans patiently awaiting to see how his fate played out, our questions were answered last night when he started a two-year sentence.

Overall, the episode drove nearly 6,000 Emotional Reactions (ERs), the majority of which came pouring in during the closing moments of the episode, according to emotion measurement and AI company Canvs. The top emotions were love (25.6%) and cried (19.4%), both driven by Ian and long-time love interest Mickey being reunited as cell mates in prison. The episode also registered 3X as many cried and 2.5X as many love ERs than the average comedy/ drama series throughout the night.

Ian was sent off in spectacular fashion, and with Fiona Gallagher- played by Emmy Rossum- also in here last season with the show, the writers are obviously going to continue pulling out all the stops. Is there a Jimmy sighting in the future? Only time will tell.