I’m also going to continue with my short but sweet reviews of cable and broadcast tv shows and movies.

This very long running series is quite different from most offerings on the tube these days. It sort of has a backhanded approach to societal problems we are faced with – identity, gay issues, race, women’s issues, infertility, single parenting ,alcoholism , I could go on and on.

Of course the fertile ground these issues are portrayed in is that very crime ridden town of Chicago, Illinois – the south side no less.

I will warn you- there is a lot of pretty explicit sexual hi- jinks – with some redeeming humor. But to a degree I think that taking things like this too seriously can be inhibiting. No one is inhibited in this program. Also the acting is top notch.

Bill Macy plays Frank Gallagher – in many ways a totally reprehensible character who never ceases to find a lower level of manipulation of his unsuspecting victims – including himself. The paradox is that the guy is actually quite smart. What a waste of intelligence!

And I must mention my favorites – Liam ( it was so fun to watch him grow up from diapers to a really thoughtfully intelligent black boy) , Fiona (the woman who seems to always pick the wrong guys) and Lip who is really a diamond in the rough with a real sense of loyalty to the family – albeit also an angry alcoholic.