For five years “Shameless” has been reminding viewers that while their families might be messed up, they’ll never be quite as crazy as the Gallaghers. Season 7 is going to be no different according to Isidora Goreshter, who has been playing Svetlana on the Showtime original series since 2013. In fact, this may be the “best season yet.”
While the show is at it’s core about the Gallagher family, there is more than blood that bonds this motley crew of characters together. Svetlana became a part of the family in Season 4, when she and Ian’s (Cameron Monaghan) boyfriend, Mickey Milkovich (Noel Fisher), had a child together. She remained somewhat of a supporting star until Season 6, when she cemented her place on the “Shameless” cast by helping Fiona (Emmy Rossum) and the rest of the gang push Frank (William H. Macy) into an icy cold river in the Season 6 finale. If you aren’t familiar with Svetlana’s storyline by now, it’s time to study up as Goreshter suggests she’s going to be a key character in the current season.
“It was almost kind of this strange moment of like, ‘well, Svetlana’s sticking around for a while because she’s throwing Frank into the river with the Gallaghers,’ which I love,” she said during an interview with International Business Times. “You’re definitely going to see a lot more of her this season — more than we’ve seen before.”
Although she was introduced to the show alongside Mickey and Ian, Svetlana came into her own in Season 6. She will separate herself from the Gallagher’s in a way, existing within her new-found relationship with Kev (Steve Howey) and V (Shanola Hampton). During Season 6, Svetlana attached herself to this pre-existing couple in the hopes of evading deportation by using one of her most prominent skills — “her sexual prowess.” The fauxmance has since grown into something more real. Svetlana and her son Yevgeniy are living with Kev, V and their twin daughters and the throuple is working like a well oiled machine — parenting tasks, housework and bedroom activity is divided among the three as viewers quickly learn in the Season 7 premiere. Goreshter calls that rhythm “a beautiful dance,” noting that Svetlana’s addition to the relationship has been beneficial to all involved, especially Svetlana who Goreshter says was “not taught to love properly.”
“This relationship is helping Svetlana find who she is as a person outside of being a prostitute because that’s all she’s really known and she’s never really had the opportunity to acknowledge her other skills as a regular person,” she said. “This relationship and working at the bar, she’s kind of slowly being able to figure out what her place is in the world and where her skills are useful in society.”
Svetlana’s self-discovery with Kev and V serves as proof that their relationship, while unconventional, is about more than just “sex and a threesome.” Goreshter assures fans that while she’s not too convinced that Svetlana is “deeply, madly, open-heartedly in love” with V, there is a deeper connection between the trio. She told IBT that Svetlana is absolutely using the relationship as a sort of “self-service,” but is also helping to strengthen the bond that was already built between Kev and V.
“People think it’s all about sex and a threesome, but it’s not. We’re actually in a full-on relationship,” she said. “We’ll come home and be like, ‘why isn’t the f--king house clean, Kev?’ It’s very real. Our relationship isn’t in your face sexual, it’s based in reality.”
Season 7 will go far beyond examining Svetlana’s love life. In just a few episodes viewers will meet a new character — Yvan (Pasha D. Lychnikoff) — who will shed some light on how Svetlana became the strong woman she is today. Goreshter did not share much with IBT about how or why Yvan would arrive on Chicago’s south side, but photos from the set suggest his visit will not be a welcome one.
“She comes from a very damaged background and I think you start to realize a couple episodes into the season why that is,” Goreshter teased. “We have a visitor from her past come in and it explains why she is the way she is and where all of her survival skills come from.”
Goreshter told IBT that she and the rest of the cast are still hard at work on the last parts of Season 7, meaning it’s anyone’s guess what will happen with Svetlana, Kev, V, Fiona and the rest of the Gallagher gang by the time the show wraps. She did, however, remind fans to keep in mind that “it is ‘Shameless’ — nothing stays rosey for too long.”
Tune in to “Shameless” Sunday at 9 p.m. EDT on Showtime or anytime after on the Showtime Anytime app.