The WORST Episodes of The Middle

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Aug 2, 2019

Network: ABC (US)

Frankie Heck and her husband Mike have lived in Orson, Indiana, their whole lives. A man of few words (every one a zinger), Mike is a manager at the town quarry and Frankie is the third-best used car salesman (out of the three) at the local dealership. She may not be a high-powered career woman, but when it comes to her family, she'll go to just about any length. And with kids like these, she had better. There's Axl, her semi-nudist teenage son conceived while under the influence of Guns N' Roses; Sue, the awkward teenage daughter who fails at everything... but with the utmost of gusto; and their seven-year-old son Brick, whose best friend is his backpack. Sometimes it seems like everyone is trying to get to the top, or struggling not to hit bottom, but we think Frankie and her family will find a lot of love, and a lot of laughs, somewhere in "The Middle".

Two of a Kind

#1 - Two of a Kind

Season 6 - Episode 21 - Aired Apr 22, 2015

When Frankie's uncle contacts her dad hoping to make amends, Frankie and Mike are caught in the middle of their feud; Sue turns to Axl for advice when she is sent to detention for the first time.

star 7.40
424 votes
Directors: Danny Salles
Writers: Tim Hobert
Pam Freakin' Staggs

#2 - Pam Freakin' Staggs

Season 6 - Episode 10 - Aired Jan 7, 2015

Frankie acts like a teenager when she hangs out with Pam Staggs, a former classmate who was popular in high school. Meanwhile, Brick surprises Mike by winning an athletic award; Sue pursues some odd hobbies; and Axl seeks a date with Devin Levin.

star 7.43
372 votes
Directors: Elliot Hegarty
Writers: Jana Hunter, Mitch Hunter
Homecoming II: The Tailgate

#3 - Homecoming II: The Tailgate

Season 7 - Episode 7 - Aired Nov 11, 2015

Frankie is looking forward to taking part in the annual homecoming tailgate. But she begins to feel like the event will become an embarrassing disaster when her mom, Pat, decides to come out and join in the fun. Meanwhile, with Axl down with a bad case of the stomach flu, Mike turns his attention to Brick to help him win the tailgate cornhole tournament trophy that has eluded him for so long, and Sue volunteers to be the class liaison for Homecoming at the event.

star 7.44
532 votes
Writers: Ilana Wernick
Flirting with Disaster

#4 - Flirting with Disaster

Season 6 - Episode 16 - Aired Mar 4, 2015

Frankie fears that her innocent flirtation with Axl’s friend has been misinterpreted, and Frankie’s dad, Tag, secretly asks Mike to help him study for his driver’s test so that he doesn't lose his license.

star 7.44
402 votes
Directors: Phil Traill
Writers: Roy Brown
Food Courting

#5 - Food Courting

Season 6 - Episode 20 - Aired Apr 15, 2015

A case of disrespect hits the Heck boys when Axl -- who is celebrating his milestone 21st birthday -- refuses to come home and help Mike move an old freezer, and Brick begins turning into a mini-Axl by dissing Frankie with a bad attitude. Meanwhile, Sue is torn over what to do when the manager of Chop Suey USA tries to woo her away from her job at Spudsy's.

star 7.44
454 votes
Directors: Blake T. Evans
Writers: Jana Hunter, Mitch Hunter
Hecks on a Train

#6 - Hecks on a Train

Season 6 - Episode 12 - Aired Feb 4, 2015

Upon learning that Aunt Edie has passed away, the Hecks board a train to South Dakota to take her to her final resting place.

star 7.45
368 votes
Writers: Tim Hobert
Crushed

#7 - Crushed

Season 7 - Episode 19 - Aired Apr 6, 2016

Sue develops a huge crush on one of her college professors and goes to extremes to get him to notice her, and Frankie and Mike agree to meet Brick's girlfriend Cindy's parents, who end up being just as quirky as their daughter.

star 7.46
647 votes
Writers: Tim Hobert
Operation Infiltration

#8 - Operation Infiltration

Season 6 - Episode 18 - Aired Apr 1, 2015

Frankie accompanies Brick on a school field trip and attempts to help her socially inept son make friends with a couple of boys. Devin scolds Axl for being mean to his sister. Mike gets a sinking feeling that he may have bullied his brother Rusty a bit too much as kids.

star 7.47
435 votes
Directors: Melissa Kosar
Writers: Ilana Wernick
Mother's Day Reservations

#9 - Mother's Day Reservations

Season 6 - Episode 23 - Aired May 6, 2015

Mike's incompetence threatens to ruin Frankie's Mother's Day. Mike tells Axl, Sue, and Brick to put some effort into a gift for Frankie. Frankie asks the kids how they would differ from her as parents.

star 7.48
427 votes
Writers: Richard Dahm
Halloween VIII: Orson Murder Mystery

#10 - Halloween VIII: Orson Murder Mystery

Season 9 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 24, 2017

As Halloween approaches, Frankie discovers that a woman had died in the bathtub of the Heck house close to 50 years ago, and Frankie and Brick become convinced that she was murdered and, much to Mike's chagrin, attempt to track down and find the murderer. Meanwhile, Axl and Lexie become frustrated over losing their alone time when Sue insists on hanging out with them wherever they go.

star 7.48
682 votes
Directors: Phil Traill
Writers: Rich Dahm
Risky Business

#11 - Risky Business

Season 7 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 14, 2015

Mike surprises Frankie when he wants to be involved in his brother's crazy business scheme; Axl goes to extreme measures to prove he can handle Mike's new motorcycle; and Sue begins living in her car to avoid her horrible roommate.

star 7.48
566 votes
Directors: Phil Traill
Writers: Ilana Wernick
Birds of a Feather

#12 - Birds of a Feather

Season 7 - Episode 12 - Aired Jan 13, 2016

Axl begins his internship at a snack-making company; Frankie complains about working for Smile Superstars; and Cindy confesses to Mike that she kissed another boy. Meanwhile, Sue's professor challenges her to stop seeing the world in a positive light for a writing assignment.

star 7.49
540 votes
Writers: Tim Hobert
Survey Says…

#13 - Survey Says…

Season 7 - Episode 20 - Aired Apr 13, 2016

Frankie is thrilled when Sue invites her for lunch at the college. But lunch becomes awkward when Sue brings her new boyfriend along - Jeremy, the school activist - and the two of them begin bombarding Frankie with everything she and the world, in general, are doing wrong. Meanwhile, Axl informs a very disappointed Mike that he wants to quit football, and Brick overly obsesses over filling out a satisfaction survey after ordering some graph paper online.

star 7.49
629 votes
Writers: Ilana Wernick
Hecks at a Movie

#14 - Hecks at a Movie

Season 7 - Episode 15 - Aired Feb 17, 2016

After discovering that Brick has never seen a movie in a theater, Frankie and Mike take him to see a film with a small scene that was partially shot in Orson. But when Brick sees a trailer for an upcoming "Planet Nowhere" film that he completely disapproves of, he makes it his mission to ensure that it won't ever play in that theater - or anywhere else. Meanwhile, Frankie and Mike get into a major disagreement over how events really unfolded when Mike shushes Frankie after he perceives that she was constantly interrupting Bill while he was telling a story; Sue runs into Logan - the hunky Abercrombie guy - and thinks she has a real chance of becoming his girlfriend; and Axl and Sean discover that they have unexpected ties to an event that happened when they were young.

star 7.51
596 votes
Writers: Ilana Wernick
The Shirt

#15 - The Shirt

Season 7 - Episode 3 - Aired Oct 7, 2015

Frankie is shocked when Mike trades in his flannel for a Hawaiian shirt; and Sue accidentally tells Devin that Axl loves her, leading Devin to question their relationship. Meanwhile, Brick gets overambitious while cleaning the bathroom.

star 7.52
615 votes
Writers: Jana Hunter, Mitch Hunter
Film, Friends and Fruit Pies

#16 - Film, Friends and Fruit Pies

Season 7 - Episode 14 - Aired Feb 10, 2016

While Frankie and Mike try to figure out which household appliance a piece of plastic belongs to, Brick becomes a tyrannical director when he casts Cindy and Troy to re-enact scenes from "Knots Landing" for a school project; Sue's excitement over having new friend Lexie become her college dorm roommate quickly sours when she finds herself being charged for half of the new things that Lexie is spontaneously buying for the room; and Axl finds himself becoming stressed out when his boss (Alan Ruck) befriends him and tells him that the fruit pie division is on the verge of being shut down.

star 7.53
588 votes
Directors: Blake T. Evans
Writers: Jana Hunter, Mitch Hunter
The Man Hunt

#17 - The Man Hunt

Season 7 - Episode 16 - Aired Feb 24, 2016

After Brick attends a Bar Mitzvah and questions when he'll officially become a man, Mike attempts to help him become more responsible in his quest to manhood. Meanwhile, Sue exudes a little too much enthusiasm as she tries to flirt and find herself a boyfriend, and Axl and Hutch find themselves a new home in the form of a Winnebago.

star 7.53
544 votes
Directors: Danny Salles
Writers: Roy Brown
The Other Man

#18 - The Other Man

Season 9 - Episode 12 - Aired Jan 9, 2018

Now that Axl has a real job, he begins to bond more with Mike and spends a lot of time with him – leaving Frankie frozen out of their interactions; and just as Sue is about to break up with Aidan, Brad pleads with her to wait a beat until after he has a chance to win the affection of Aiden's handsome friend, Luke.

star 7.53
524 votes
Siblings and Sombreros

#19 - Siblings and Sombreros

Season 6 - Episode 19 - Aired Apr 8, 2015

Sue gets furious with Axl for forgetting a sombrero he promised to bring her, and Frankie's attempt to resolve their quarrel only makes things worse. Elsewhere, Mike is astonished to discover that Brick was named Athlete of the Month at middle school.

star 7.53
437 votes
Directors: Melissa Kosar
Writers: Jana Hunter, Mitch Hunter
No Silent Night

#20 - No Silent Night

Season 7 - Episode 10 - Aired Dec 9, 2015

Dreading the fact that they are always late to church and end up in the overflow room, Frankie makes the decision to have the family watch a Christmas Eve service on TV from the comfort of the Heck house. But a string of events make their evening anything but a peaceful, silent night.

star 7.53
553 votes
Directors: Melissa Kosar
Writers: DeAnn Heline, Eileen Heisler
Thanksgiving VII

#21 - Thanksgiving VII

Season 7 - Episode 8 - Aired Nov 18, 2015

The Hecks agree to forgo Thanksgiving after Frankie finds out that she's out of a job until January and must pick up a holiday position, which requires her to work on Thanksgiving in order to make ends meet. Much to her dismay, she ends up once again having to portray an overworked 19th century woman back at Heritage Village during the Harvest Feast and finds herself going face-to-face with Sheila (Faith Ford), a woman who definitely takes her job too seriously. Meanwhile, Sue goes back to work at Spudsy's over her holiday break in the hopes that she'll once again run into Logan - the dreamy Abercrombie guy, Axl finds himself in foreign territory when he starts becoming emotional over how his life has turned out, and Mike and Brick find themselves needing to find a bonding experience when the electricity goes out at the house and they are forced to interact with each other.

star 7.53
554 votes
Directors: Elliot Hegarty
Writers: Rich Dahm
The Rush

#22 - The Rush

Season 7 - Episode 11 - Aired Jan 6, 2016

As Sue desires to join a sorority, Frankie feels useless when Brick decides to go shopping by himself. Axl helps Mike to use social media for his project.

star 7.54
581 votes
Writers: Roy Brown
Land of the Lost

#23 - Land of the Lost

Season 7 - Episode 5 - Aired Oct 21, 2015

Frankie asks Reverend TimTom to find out why Mike is being distant; and Sue invites Brick to visit her at college, but she loses him after running into the handsome Abercrombie guy. Meanwhile, Axl and Hutch complain to the city about an ant infestation.

star 7.54
579 votes
Writers: Roy Brown
The Lanai

#24 - The Lanai

Season 7 - Episode 21 - Aired Apr 27, 2016

Frankie is excited to lay out and relax on her new backyard lanai - aka patio - that Mike and his workmates built for her. But peace and serenity become hard to come by when new neighbors, with three screaming kids, move in next door and make it next to impossible for Frankie to find some quiet time. Meanwhile, Brick questions Mike as to whether his workmates helped build the lanai because they are his friends, or because he's their boss; Sue and Lexie draw a winning number in the dorm lottery and score the perfect room but find it difficult to kick out its current occupants; and Axl and Hutch open up a grilled cheese food truck out of their Winnebago, with a reluctant Kenny as their chef.

star 7.55
649 votes
Directors: Blake T. Evans
Writers: Jana Hunter, Mitch Hunter
Floating 50

#25 - Floating 50

Season 7 - Episode 13 - Aired Jan 20, 2016

Mike enlists Axl and Brick's help to throw a surprise party for Frankie's 50th birthday. Meanwhile, Sue is mocked after posting a flyer for her missing sock in the dorm laundry room; and Coach Babbitt is determined to turn Brick into an athlete after he turns in a project about how he can't play sports.

star 7.55
575 votes
Writers: Richard Dahm