Sue's Best Shots: Sue's school photos provide the springboard for cast and crew to recall their own school photo experiences
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Patricia Heaton stars as Frankie Heck in this warm and witty single-camera comedy about raising a family and lowering your expectations. Frankie Heck is a superhero. Well, no, not an actual superhero - but sometimes it seems to Frankie as though getting her kids out the door for school every morning is a superheroic act. Middle aged, middle class and living in the middle of the country, this harried wife and working mother of three uses her wry wit and sense of humor to try to get her family through each day intact.
The Middle is the most honest--and, for that reason, the funniest--sitcom about middle class family life since Roseanne. Frankie Heck (Patricia Heaton, Everybody Loves Raymond) wearily runs a cluttered, chaotic household with her husband Mike (Neil Flynn, Scrubs) and three unruly kids: sullen teen jock Axl (Charlie McDermott), hopeless klutz Sue (Eden Sher), and smart but socially awkward Brick (Atticus Shaffer). The plots revolve around the kind of mild crises that make domestic life so difficult: Frankie and Mike can't find time to be alone together; debts force difficult choices; the kids spend more time watching television than talking to each other. Again and again, Frankie longs to teach her kids good values but realizes she isn't living up to those values herself--and her reluctant efforts to muster virtue within herself can be achingly funny. Frankie is superbly well realized, a perfect match of writing and performer. Heaton portrays her contradictory impulses (virtue vs. convenience, open-heartedness vs. a hunger for just a little time alone) with wonderful subtlety; the wary look in her eyes flickers between sincerity and cynicism.
The supporting cast is every bit as strong. These kids actually look and act like kids, in all their obnoxious, oblivious, naive glory, not like glossy supermodels in training. Flynn pulls his own deft balancing act, making husband Mike blunt and a little insensitive without seeming like a jerk or a caricature. The show is still working out some kinks--Chris Kattan (Saturday Night Live) plays a hapless coworker of Frankie's; the character has possibilities and Kattan seems game for anything, but the writers don't quite know what to do with him yet. A host of guest stars--including Brooke Shields as a white trash neighbor and Betty White as an imperious librarian--fit nicely into the show's world, rather than sticking out like stunt casting. The Middle treats middle America with compassion, intelligence, and genuine appreciation. --Bret Fetzer
Love this show, dysfunctionally funny yet down to earth family!!!Published 5 days ago by Michelle Baker
Couldn't make it through 20 minutes of this schlock. There's a reason people shouldn't be "celebrating" Middle Amerikkka - it represents everything that is wrong with this... Read morePublished 7 days ago by EveKendall
Not as good as Everybody Loves Raymond, and this show is a blatant copy of Malcolm in the Middle. 3/10Published 7 days ago by The Hardcore PlayStation/Xbox Fanboy
Great series with lots of laughs. As insane as their problems seem, they are somehow relatable every time.Published 12 days ago by Kathleen D.
I really wanted to like The Middle. In an effort to fully evaluate the show I watched the episodes in reruns many, many times and even purchased a season. Read morePublished 22 days ago by Hobbes747
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Oh come on. You all should be happy you can even see full episodes of this show on DVD because ABC won't post them and I hated waiting every week this summer for a re-run. They re-ran the pilot last week and it was EDITED!
Does it really matter if it's in hi-def? As long as I have the episodes on... Read More
Sep 1, 2010 by yankeesrule1989 | See all 6 posts
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