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'The Middle' fan recap: Brick the athlete

Season 6 | Episode 19 | “Siblings and Sombreros” | Aired April 8, 2015

This week’s episode of The Middle was all about clashing personalities. Do you remember your senior year of high school when everything was SUPER important? It was the last time you would be doing (insert silly activity here), you had to plan big events, and it was all SO big and stressful?

Now, do you remember when you were in college and absolutely NOTHING was important? The only thing big and stressful was getting into that party you weren’t exactly invited to or accidentally using up all your meal swipes at the cafeteria?

Now, imagine being a parent of two kids, each in that particular time of their lives. That was what happened on this week’s episode of The Middle. Sue is continuing to stress out about all her senior-year activities, while Axl is continuing to never stress about anything, ever. These two conflicting personalities have finally come to a boiling point, and Frankie is the one in the middle of it all.

So what’s a mom to do when her kids won’t stop fighting? Naturally, she says bad things about one kid behind their back to make the other kid feel better. Telling Axl that Sue is “relentless” and kind of nutty, and telling Sue that Axl has baby-like tendencies would be a good idea in theory. Except, when you have two kids fighting, of course they’re going to tell each other every word that you just said, which makes them fight even more.

In case you missed it a couple of weeks ago, Sue has decided that she will attend East Indiana State next year, which just so happens to be the same school Axl goes to. So they should probably stop fighting, because there’s nothing less cool than getting in a smack-down-drag-out with your little sister/big brother in the middle of campus for everyone to see. At least for Frankie, they’ll be fighting 45-minutes away, and hopefully she won’t be able to hear it from Orson.

So while Frankie deals with the two oldest kids, Mike has laid claim on Brick. And for good reason, because Brick has been given a huge honor. He was voted “athlete of the month” in gym class. Brick. Sports! Yeah, Mike is just as confused as you are.

Confused, but excited. Very excited! This is probably the most exciting thing Mike could dream would happen to one of his kids. Not that he doesn’t love Brick, but having Brick be an athlete would just give them something more in common.

But, despite Brick’s supposed newfound athleticism, he isn’t really into playing sports. He’s definitely a big fan of reading about them, though. So while Mike doesn’t exactly have a professional tennis player living in his home, at least he and Brick can still get out in the driveway and shoot a little hoops from time to time. No books necessary.

As for Sue and Axl, they may not be the best of friends yet, but they find that maybe that 45-minute drive to school will be a little better when they get to ride together. And not fight … well not fight that much. That’s really all Frankie can ask for.

The Middle airs Wednesday at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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