Malcolm in the Middle

The WORST episodes of Malcolm in the Middle

Every episode of Malcolm in the Middle ever, ranked from worst to best by thousands of votes from fans of the show. The worst episodes of Malcolm in the Middle!

A gifted and smart young man tries to navigate life, puberty, and love while trying to survive his often dimwitted, dysfunctional family.

Last Updated: 6/2/2022Network: FOX
624 votes

#1 - Halloween

Season 7 - Episode 4 - Aired 10/28/2005

Reese and Malcolm try to perform the ultimate Halloween prank.

Directors: David D'Ovidio
Clip Show #2
476 votes

#2 - Clip Show #2

Season 4 - Episode 17 - Aired 4/20/2003

Clips from past episodes are interwoven with the current squabbling of Hal and Lois, who set out to draw up a will and wind up at odds over their legacies and their kids. As Hal tells Lois, "We are not equipped to deal with these issues."

Directors: Levie Isaacks
Clip Show
454 votes

#3 - Clip Show

Season 3 - Episode 19 - Aired 4/28/2002

An embattled psychiatrist probes the boys' naughty behavior patterns in a session framed by flashbacks to past episodes.

Directors: Jamie Babbit
Company Picnic (Part 1)
601 votes

#4 - Company Picnic (Part 1)

Season 3 - Episode 11 - Aired 2/3/2002

Juicy guest casting and ingenious plotting enliven an hourlong episode that airs in the plum post-Super Bowl slot. One storyline unfolds at Hal's company picnic, where Lois clashes with a blabby wife (Susan Sarandon) and her beleaguered spouse (Kaczmarek's real-life husband, Bradley Whitford); and Hal runs afoul of his new boss (Stephen Root) and the big cheese (Patrick Warburton). In Alaska, Francis's scheme to win a bet involves rigging a hockey game that pits loggers vs. a fearsome women's squad led by a blowhard coach (Terry Bradshaw).

Secret Boyfriend
516 votes

#5 - Secret Boyfriend

Season 7 - Episode 6 - Aired 11/11/2005

When Malcolm gets paired with a dimwitted beauty as his chemistry partner, he thinks it's a recipe for disaster, but when she reveals her feelings for him, sparks fly. They agree to keep their romantic experiment under wraps until Malcolm realizes that she's just embarrassed to be dating him. Meanwhile, Lois demands that Reese get a job, and she kicks him out of the house to prove that she means business.

563 votes

#6 - Softball

Season 5 - Episode 12 - Aired 2/15/2004

Malcolm is convinced to play Softball by Lois and ends up doing very badly at it due to Lois's hold on him. Meanwhile, Francis tries to pick fights with Lois, Reese tries to break Francis's record of collecting toilet seats from a local junkyard, and Hal accidentally applies to become a member of the CIA.

628 votes

#7 - Standee

Season 6 - Episode 3 - Aired 11/21/2004

When Hal and the garbageman get into a trash-dumping war (which benefits Dewey more than anyone else), Hal enlists Reese's help. Meanwhile, Lois gets her job back at Lucky Aide (off probation), and fights against Malcolm in order to take down an offensive billboard of a smiling black janitor (whose nametag reads "Slappy") holding a mop and a 6-pack of malt liquor. Soon it's an all-out war between mom and son - until Lois encounters a fellow employee who is more racist than the billboard.

Directors: David D'Ovidio
Malcolm's Car
500 votes

#8 - Malcolm's Car

Season 6 - Episode 9 - Aired 1/30/2005

When Malcolm spots a roughed up 1967 Cuda in his neighborhood, he instantly falls in love with it and purchases the car. But he gets so caught up in the difficult task of restoring it that he blows off Stevie as well as Reese who needs him for an illegal betting scheme of his. Hal on the other hand, is having success when he stumbles upon his hidden talent -- hairstyling. Lois doesn't have time to worry about Malcolm or Hal, as she is caught up in scandal between Craig and their Lucky Aide boss Fred. Craig says he is taking time off to tutor Fred's wife in golf but Lois finds out he is actually having an affair with her.

Directors: Peter Lauer
Tiki Lounge
528 votes

#9 - Tiki Lounge

Season 6 - Episode 13 - Aired 3/13/2005

When Hal and Lois realize how little time they spend together, Hal turns the garage into a private tiki lounge where he and Lois can retreat. Things go smoothly until they feud over philosophical beliefs. Meanwhile, Mr. Herkabe cons Malcolm into joining the Booster Club, where he learns a lesson about taking one for the team.

Health Insurance
627 votes

#10 - Health Insurance

Season 7 - Episode 2 - Aired 10/7/2005

When Hal forgets to pay the family's health insurance, the company will not reinstate it until Monday, so he panics and locks the boys in their room to keep them from getting hurt.

Army Buddy
515 votes

#11 - Army Buddy

Season 7 - Episode 8 - Aired 12/2/2005

When Lois finds renewed energy with orthotic inserts for her shoes, Hal fears she will not look to him for support anymore and plots to destroy the inserts. A former female army buddy of Reese's comes to their house for a visit. But she gets defensive when Reese thinks they are way more than just friends and comes intact to the idea of trying to sleep with her.

Buseys Run Away
556 votes

#12 - Buseys Run Away

Season 6 - Episode 2 - Aired 11/14/2004

The Buseys disappear after Dewey leaves the special-needs class; Hal becomes the leader of a group of brainless bodybuilders.

Directors: Bryan Cranston
Reese Comes Home
621 votes

#13 - Reese Comes Home

Season 6 - Episode 1 - Aired 11/7/2004

When Reese realizes the Army is too much for him to handle, he deserts and dresses as an Afghani woman. But Lois is on a march to find him, and travels to Kabul to hunt him down. Meanwhile, Malcolm volunteers at a veterans hospital as a way to make up for his guilt of making Reese leave.

Directors: Todd Holland
Hal Sleepwalks
459 votes

#14 - Hal Sleepwalks

Season 6 - Episode 7 - Aired 1/16/2005

Hal is sleepless because of their upcoming 20th wedding anniversary. So he ask Reese for some ideas for presents. Then Reese gets the idea to brainwash his dad while he's nervous. Dewey's friends are set up in an upcoming student body election when a bully nominated two of his geeky friends. Malcolm takes up playing the electric guitar, though Lois discourages his musical ability. He writes a heart warming song. When he plays & sings his creation, Dewey figures out that his song is sung to the tune of the "Meow Mix" jingle!

Directors: David D'Ovidio
599 votes

#15 - Blackout

Season 7 - Episode 7 - Aired 11/18/2005

Francis decides to surprise the family by coming home, and the power goes out in the house. Meanwhile, it's Lois who's in the dark when Hal decides to cancel their anniversary dinner in favor of a Reese-cooked meal at home. And Malcolm ends up in hot water after he sneaks three Dutch girls into the house.

666 votes

#16 - Carnival

Season 2 - Episode 23 - Aired 5/6/2001

Malcolm, Dewey, Stevie, and Reese hide out at a traveling carnival after hours and run afoul of a determined security guard and several members of the freak show.

Directors: Ken Kwapis
Jury Duty
467 votes

#17 - Jury Duty

Season 3 - Episode 20 - Aired 5/1/2002

Lois gets jury duty and Hal tries to figure out what case she's working on. Meanwhile, Malcolm and Reese saw Stevie's mom naked and brag about it, they also take Dewey to the sewers and get lost.

Dirty Magazine
560 votes

#18 - Dirty Magazine

Season 5 - Episode 9 - Aired 1/11/2004

Malcolm alerts the A.C.L.U. when he encounters censorship working on the high-school literary magazine; Hal tries to flirt with the woman in his office responsible for cutbacks.

Directors: Bryan Cranston
Book Club
775 votes

#19 - Book Club

Season 3 - Episode 3 - Aired 11/18/2001

Unfulfilled Lois joins a ladies’ book club, which is really a whining—and wining—session. Meanwhile, at home, Hal’s desperate to busy the boys.

Directors: Todd Holland
818 votes

#20 - Robbery

Season 2 - Episode 7 - Aired 11/26/2000

Gun-wielding robbers menace Lois and Craig at the Lucky Aide Store, while swarming bats beset Hal and the boys at home.

Directors: Todd Holland
Baby (Part 2)
438 votes

#21 - Baby (Part 2)

Season 4 - Episode 21 - Aired 5/18/2003

While Lois is in labor, the house is hectic, and Hal, desperate to get home, has crashed the car on the way out of the expo.

Directors: Jamie Babbit
Ida Loses A Leg
524 votes

#22 - Ida Loses A Leg

Season 6 - Episode 14 - Aired 3/20/2005

During Grandma's unwelcome visit with the family, she loses her leg while saving Dewey from a moving truck. Consumed with guilt, Dewey is determined to find his Grandmother's leg and give it the proper burial. Francis, on the other hand, begrudgingly becomes the caretaker for his stubborn, cranky grandmother. Meanwhile, Malcolm and Reese are given a new idea for a prank that forces them to stay awake days at a time to avoid the embarrassment of having their faces glued to the floor.

Cattle Court
474 votes

#23 - Cattle Court

Season 7 - Episode 20 - Aired 4/16/2006

Reese meets a cute vegetarian named Carrie when he goes back to work at the meat plant. At first, he goes along with her political talk, but she catches him with a pork chop. So, to get Carrie back, he sets free all the cows at the meat plant. Malcolm, meanwhile, tries to fool Lois in order to attend a rock concert.

Directors: Peter Lauer
Burning Man
681 votes

#24 - Burning Man

Season 7 - Episode 1 - Aired 9/30/2005

The family attends the counterculture Burning Man festival in the desert.

Home Alone 4
1166 votes

#25 - Home Alone 4

Season 1 - Episode 3 - Aired 1/23/2000

Lois and Hal are spending the weekend at a family wedding, leaving Francis -- home for a visit -- in charge. When Malcolm overhears them discussing whether Francis has spent long enough at the military academy, he enlists his brothers in a scheme to get Francis home by preventing any of the usual disasters. But three of Francis's dude buddies turn up to party and trash the house, and while frantically cleaning up Malcolm gets a serious head injury that necessitates the usual trip to the emergency ward. How to prevent Mom and Dad from finding out? Enter Caroline, who has begged Malcolm to look on her not just as his teacher but also as his "friend" -- a declaration that costs her $400 in medical bills. Meanwhile, Hal and Lois discover that his family has a new nickname for her: "Lois Common Denominator." Her humiliation provokes Hal to declare his devotion to her -- and the snooty bride and groom discover that their honeymoon car is already being put to use.... Home again, Mom and Dad a

Directors: Todd Holland

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