Shawn and Gus: Best Friends Forever

Posted: June 4, 2012 in TV Shows
Tags: , , , ,

(I’m warning you now. I found an incredible site for Psych gifs and this post is full of them. You just have to see these two characters in motion in order to understand them. The website is here.)

I dare you to find a friendship as flawed and strange, yet undeniably perfect, as the relationship shared between BFFs Shawn and Gus of Psych.

If you’re unfamiliar with the show, let me just give you a little run-down. Shawn is a “psychic detective,” and yes there’s a reason why that is in quotes. He is, in fact, a fraud. He’s highly observant and can make connections that most others can’t. In the pilot episode, Shawn was almost convicted of a crime because he seemed to know information that only the person who would’ve committed it did. In comes his brilliant plan – he’s a psychic! And guess what? The police buy it, hire him as a consultant, and Shawn sets up his own psychic detective business with his best friend Gus.

Believe it or not, this is a regular occurrence on this show.

Gus is Shawn’s opposite in pretty much every imaginable way. Gus works for a pharmaceutical company and often gets dragged into these things by Shawn. He doesn’t pretend to have any special powers, but the cops let him tag along as Shawn’s wingman (and oftentimes his interpreter). More often than not, Gus’ major contribution to the team comes in the form of that green paper that can be found in his wallet.

Here’s the funny thing about Shawn: if you put his personality down on paper (so to speak) he looks like a terrible person. He’s lazy. He can’t keep a steady job. He never goes an episode without lying to someone. I think I’ve seen him be serious only two times in the last five seasons. He’s constantly taking money from Gus without asking, and always gets them into trouble. He never follows the rules. He has to be right. He loves proving people wrong. He’s nosy and he can be pretty arrogant.

And Gus looks like a saint compared to him. He went to college. He got a fantastic, well-paying job. He’s organized, respectful, and kind. He’s not oblivious to other people’s feelings like a certain someone else. He does what he’s told and doesn’t ask too many questions. He picks up the slack that Shawn leaves behind, which often involves important things like paying the bills and doing the taxes.

And yet Shawn has his admirable qualities. He genuinely likes helping people and catching the bad guys. He’ll even go out of his way to help someone feel better by taking the fall for it – which means even more because you know that isn’t how Shawn usually operates. And Gus has his flaws too. He’s a little more rigid, a little harder to convince to do something crazy. He works too hard and doesn’t often stop to have a little fun.

And yet, when these two are together, they are the exact definition of perfection. They are literally yin and yang – completing each other to form a perfect, wonderful, flawless circle.

This is my favorite thing that they do.

Gus is Shawn’s sense of reason, his conscience. He tells him when he’s going overboard (which is pretty often). He reigns in the crazy and tends to be the one making excuses when Shawn forgets his manners. Shawn reminds Gus to loosen up a little bit. He reminds him that it’s okay to get dirty once in a while. He shows Gus how to live life to its fullest.

This is what Shawn and Gus do when they figure something out (or just really excited).

And even though these guys are (literally and figuratively) black and white, they’re also so, so similar. Both have a strange affinity for making references to ‘80s movies. They know what the other one is thinking without having to say anything. And so many times they’ll cover for the other person, even if it makes them look foolish. Isn’t that true friendship?


And because you can’t just explain their relationship in words, here are some gifs so you can get to know them a little better.

Fist bumping is sort of their thing.

And while writing this, I realized that my best friend and I share a very, very similar relationship. I’m Shawn and she’s Gus. I’m the lazy, crazy, spacey one. She’s the organized, well put together, calm one. In college, I used to purposely mess up her perfectly made bed just to annoy her. And I used to “let” her make mine in the morning (otherwise I wouldn’t do it). And just like Shawn and Gus, we can read each other’s minds. We always have each other’s backs. And there’s nothing that we can’t tell each other.

We often fight this like:

And on occasion we’ve been known to do this:

Sometimes we switch roles. I’m usually like this:

And definitely like this:

But at the end of the day, this is what we look like:

So, I need to know – what are you and your best friend like? Do you defy the laws of physics, yet seem to work so perfectly together? Do you press his or her buttons just because you can?

(P.S. I had an incredibly hard time writing this article. I still feel like I didn’t get it all out the right way, but these are two of my all time favorite characters, so it’s going to be hard to capture their essence in words alone. PLEASE, for the love of all things hilarious and wonderful, go watch Psych.)

  1. Stacy Green says:

    I think you did a great job with the article. Makes me want to watch the show. I see previews all the time, but sounds like their relationship is really want makes it work.

    As for my best friend, we’re opposites and yet we’re very similar. We’re both highly emotional and creative, she’s brilliant, I’m smart (I mean that in I.Q. terms, lol) and she’s highly confident in her professional life while mine is a work in progress. For our completely different backgrounds, somehow we gel together and she’s the one person I can really tell everything to.:)

    • Karen Rought says:

      I love pretty much everything about the show, but Shawn and Gus are the number one reason why I keep going back.

      Isn’t that funny how that works? It’s the things that make us different that really bring us together in the end – like we’re each just one part of a whole.

  2. Fabio Bueno says:

    You’re the second person that recommended this show to me. Both of you did it passionately. I have to check it out!

  3. Julie Glover says:

    I love this post! Psych is one of my favorite shows, and Gus is the best sidekick ever (forget Robin; he’s a hack by comparison). You point out, however, that while Shawn is the main detective, their friendship is equal: They each bring out something important in the other. Friendship includes understanding one another, but also challenging one another.

    My best friend is twelve flavors of awesome-sauce! She is frank and sarcastic like me; we share values; and yet she’s far more extroverted and spontaneous. She can give me the best attagirls when I do something cool and call me on the carpet when I need a good head-smacking. I appreciate her wisdom and authenticity…and she makes me laugh to the point of snorting at times. I would so do that Snoopy Dance with her.

    • Karen Rought says:

      Gus is just incredible. I love them both beyond reason.

      I definitely am the snort-inducing one. I can make my best friend laugh like no one else can (which is the best feeling in the world). And I definitely have my own victory dance (she’s too cool to join in with me).

  4. I am a HUGE Psych fan. As annoying as Shawn can be, his love for Gus makes up for it. In Jerry Maguire, Tom completes Renee. In this instance, Shawn and Gus complete each other. I joke that the end of House was the end of a great love affair (House and Wilson). Shawn and Gus share another of TV’s greatest love affairs.

    • Karen Rought says:

      They really do! As I was writing this, I realized it sounded like they were a couple. …And in a lot of ways they are! Their bond is just that strong. Thanks for commenting. 🙂

  5. This show doesn’t show in NZ – but I’ll look out for it!

    As for best friends – I’ve had a great friend for the last 25-odd years, he’s got the same interests as me and is (if possible) geekier. We have a weekly beer drinking session in a local pub (and have done for 20 years) at which just about everything from physics to US politics gets raked over. By chance, his wife and my wife were both childhood friends, they lived next door to each other. His mother-in-law knew my mother-in-law. One of those weird coincidences that shows how tiny a place NZ actually is.

    • Karen Rought says:

      Yes, try to find it!

      Isn’t that funny how that happens? It makes you feel like it was meant to be when everything works out like that. Thanks for stopping by!

  6. Fabulous. You know I support anyone with such a gifted sense of Television greatness.

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