Sad to say, the high point of my week is The Middle


A day in the life of "The Middle" (Photo courtesy of ABC.com)

Yes, I admit it. The high point of my week is watching the Wednesday night ABC family comedy, The Middle. Every Wednesday, after we come home from the proverbial hard day at work, my family and I flop down on the couch and chortle hysterically for an unabashed 22 minutes as we watch this hilarious romp about a semi-functional family set in middle America.

In case you have not seen it, The Middle is a comedy about a harried middle-class mom trying to keep things together for her family of three crazy kids and sports-minded husband, set in an ordinary Indiana town in middle-America, hence, The Middle. The characters  have all the usual things come up that most parents go through with child-rearing, except these parents are so over-stretched and disorganized, that even the simplest things become a project. 

Part of  what appeals to me about the show is that I can identify with every character. Growing up I was just a little bit like Brick, the nerdy, socially awkward  bookworm kid. When I see Sue, the painfully clumsy teen, I wonder how the writers of The Middle were able to watch me growing up without my knowing it. And Axl, the underachiever teen boy was on every single group project I ever did in school.  

Of course, as a mom, I’m nothing like Frankie, who lets her kids walk all over her, disciplines inconsistently, and serves her family fast food from paper bags night after night. Yet, I can identify because she’s the mom who finds out she’s supposed to bring 2-dozen cupcakes to school as her kids are walking out the door. Her teenage son doesn’t want to be seen with her in public. Her daughter Sue is always getting herself into embarrassing social situations from which Frankie tries vainly to protect her. Her near-Asperger’s son Brick is such a social misfit that she stalks kids at the playground, trying to find him a friend. What mom has not been in shoes like these at some point in her mom career? And Frankie’s motto – “You’re only as happy as your unhappiest kid,” pretty much says it all.

They can't even manage to find enough chairs - Brick has to sit in a lawn chair (Photo courtesy of ABC.com)

I’m not a big TV fan in general, and found this show by accident last season on a night where I was too tired to do anything but flip channels. This is a skill I learned from my teenage sons, by the way. It never occurred to me to watch snippets of 20 shows at once until I saw them do it, as of course I did not have a remote, or more than two channels, when I was their age. Anyway, one minute I was in post-work  catatonia, and the next minute laughing so uproariously that my family came in from other parts of the house  to find out what was going on. Needless to say, we’ve all been Middle fans ever since, even watching the reruns and laughing heartily at a show we’ve already seen.

What qualities in a TV show warm you heart and make you identify with the characters? For me, it’s the loyal, unfailing love the parents have for their kids on the crazy show, The Middle.

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10 thoughts on “Sad to say, the high point of my week is The Middle

  1. The only shows I watch regularly are music/talent shows like American Idol, Dancing with the Stars, and So You Think You Can Dance. In the case of Idol and SYTYCD, there’s something about seeing incredible giftedness in a young person that is very moving to me.

    (As a lifelong camper, I also enjoy Survivor. But in that case, the fun is screaming at my TV when yet another contestant didn’t practice making fire before going on the show.) Heartwarming. 😉

    • Are you an erstwhile reality show contestant in blogger’s clothing Margaret? Maybe you should let your inner reality star out – I don’t watch Survivor but I would if I knew YOU were on 😉

  2. I love that show as well! I get a kick out of the house they live in, with clothes and junk strewn everywhere, and none of the furniture matching, etc…..because that is exactly what I grew up with. It is a very underrated show.

    • I agree. I bet there are more family homes that look like that one than the typical sitcom home, where everything is perfect. Case in point – the show that comes on after that – Modern Family. It gets much more media hype than the middle, but in my opinion, not that deserving of it. But their home is perfect.

    • You must have had a fun and crazy family. I think I relate to the mom the most. Tonight’s show was a rerun but I watched it anyway. My favorite part – when Brick tells his mom she needs to bring 30 shoe boxes to his class the next day – I’ve been there. Thanks for stopping by, and stay off the muffins!

  3. I think this is one of the funniest shows. I’m bummed because it’s so hard to get them online. We don’t have regular tv as we watch abc.com, nbc.com, Hulu and now Netflix… we avoid costly cable when we are already paying for internet. With that being said, there are some things we sometimes get and sometimes not. ABC can’t make up their minds about letting us watch The Middle online.

    Another Great Show that cracks us up every episode- Fox (fox.com) Raising Hope. the first 6 episodes have now been removed (but they might rerelease) I swear that is so funny! It has Martha Plimpton (?) and the guy from the Terminator (tv series).
    And, since I’m a huge 80’s fan, TBS.com show glory Daze (about guys going to college in the 80’s) has some pretty funny stuff, the beginning episodes were better, but always a good scene or two.
    Sandi

    • Looks like I’ll need to check out your suggestions.

      I like the idea of watching TV via internet, but in my area, the cable company provides is the ISP and they won’t let you subscribe to internet service unless you also subscribe to cable TV. There may be other places to get internet though but have not checked them out.

  4. Pingback: My transformation to the dark side is complete | Huffygirl's Blog

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