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Vernon Francis "Frank" Gallagher (born 12 March 1959), the head of the Gallagher family, is an unemployed alcoholic, and the son of Neville and Sarah Elizabeth Gallagher (1935–1972). He is married to Monica, with whom he has six children (Fiona, Phillip, Carl, Debbie, Liam, Stella), and one,Ian, to whom he is de jure father. He also has two children with Sheila Jackson, Nigel and Delia, and is the father of Monica's half-sister, when he was seduced by her mother at Monica's birthday party. He has two grandchildren, Katie and an unnamed child of Fiona's when she left in Series 2.

Frank became an alcoholic shortly after his first wife Monica left him for Norma Starkey. He then left the younger children in the care of Fiona, and moved in with agoraphobic Sheila Jackson. Often known to make a fool out of himself and shirk all responsibility, Frank nonetheless shows signs of loving his children. He can offer good advice, he saved Liam and Stella from being taken into care when a parent was needed and stopped local policeman Tom from 'ruining his daughter's life'.. When he is rendered completely sober by a new drug, Frank appears reflective and even quite intelligent, wondering why Sheila would add to her problems by marrying a mess like him.

In early series Frank comes across as a drunken bully, even headbutting his son Ian on one occasion. Most of his children initially hate Frank for his drunken bullying ways. Lip and Ian are never scared to show their feelings towards him, and even physically attack him on a few occasions. However, his middle daughter Debbie shows sympathy throughout the series when her father is either in serious trouble or presumed dead, something which has happened three times to date. The family have generally warmed towards him more as the series has progressed, mostly due to the fact that he isn't bothering them hugely on a daily basis

Frank has apparently been convicted and sentenced to imprisonment several times in his youth. He claimed to have been incarcerated in Strangeways Prison. It has not been mentioned what exactly were the reasons for his string of past convictions.

Frank's hallmark is drunken rants on a wide variety of literary, historical and philosophical subjects, usually returning to how decent, hard-working people, among whom he erroneously seems to count himself, are discriminated against. Frank frequently quotes Shakespeare, The Bible, references international current events and uses poetry and soliloquy to express his feelings or view, as he does at the start of each episode. Frank is a supporter of Manchester City

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