‘The Middle’ Episode Guide (Dec. 2): Frankie Attends Convention in Iowa

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‘The Middle’ Episode Guide (Dec. 2): Frankie Attends Convention in Iowa

“The Convention” (12/02/15) – Dr. Goodwin (Jack McBrayer) informs Frankie that she must attend a convention on an all-expense paid trip to Des Moines as part of the dentist office’s transition to being part of the Smile Superstars International team, headlined by the company’s inspiring founder, Dr. Samuelson (Cheryl Hines).

Thinking that her husband could use a break, Frankie entices Mike to join her on the trip to experience the luxuries of a free mini vacation. Meanwhile, Axl informs a disapproving Sue that he’s going to move into her dorm room until he finds a new place of his own, and roles become reversed when Mike’s dad, Big Mike (John Cullum), agrees to watch over Brick while Frankie and Mike are out of town, on “The Middle,” WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 2 (8:00-8:30 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.

Guest starring in this episode are Jack McBrayer as Dr. Goodwin, Cheryl Hines as Dr. Samuelson, John Cullum as Big Mike, Madison Kirkpatrick as Madison, Sarielle Arambulo as Kelly and John Colton as professor.

“The Convention” was written by Jana Hunter & Mitch Hunter and directed by Lee Shallat Chemel.

Two-time Emmy winner Patricia Heaton stars in this warm and witty single-camera comedy about raising a family and lowering your expectations. Middle-aged, middle class and living in the middle of the country in Orson, Indiana, Frankie Heck is a harried wife and mother of three who uses her wry wit and sense of humor to get her family through each day intact. Frankie works as a dental assistant, and her unflappable husband, Mike, is manager at the local quarry and her sardonic partner in the daily grind that is raising their average – yes, most definitely average – family.

But will this year finally be the year of the Hecks? It just could be, as in their own way, each family member finds themselves breaking out of their comfort zones and navigating new situations than what they’re used to.

Between juggling shifts and picking up fast food dinners eaten in front of the TV, Frankie and Mike raise their kids with love, humor and solid Midwestern practicality. Axl, the oldest, is a jock slacker who is beginning his third year of college via a sports scholarship. He lives near campus in a house with his friend and teammate, Hutch, and silent gamer, Kenny, but issues with the house may force the group to temporarily find new accommodations, which could end up impacting Frankie and Mike. This being his junior year, the business major starts getting real, and he has to navigate the adult workforce and start thinking seriously about his future.

Then there’s the ever-optimistic Sue, their extraordinarily ordinary daughter, who fails at just about everything she tries with great gusto. She is starting her first year of college at the same campus that Axl attends – much to his disgust – with a new haircut and an even more optimistic view on life.

She’s moving out of the house and into the dorm, but will she take college by storm — or find that navigating nightmare roommates, new challenges and living away from home for the first time test her endless optimism in new ways? As always, she will tackle this new phase of life as only Sue can. And finally there’s Brick, their quirky son, now navigating his way through eighth grade – his final year of middle school. He continues to read constantly, whisper and “whoop” to himself, as well as unapologetically march to the beat of his own drummer. But with equally quirky girlfriend Cindy wanting to take things to the next level – holding hands – Brick will find himself in new romantic territory and begin a misguided effort to become more social.

With Axl and Sue out of the house, Frankie and Mike will find themselves with an emptier nest, leaving Frankie to wonder if maybe she can at long last cut back on the parental duties — a hope that is easier said than done — as parenting is never over no matter where your kids are. New changes in the dental office will throw her into a tougher work environment, and she will discover that balancing kids and work never really gets easier — it just gets different. Mike, on the other hand, begins to wonder if raising kids, setting them free and punching a clock is all there is to his life, and he finds himself going through a bit of a midlife crisis — shocking everyone when he uncharacteristically decides to take some new chances.

Their hilarious struggles continue, but through all the madness shines a loving family, and together the Hecks are putting “The Middle” on the map.

“The Middle” stars Patricia Heaton as Frankie, Neil Flynn as Mike, Charlie McDermott as Axl, Eden Sher as Sue and Atticus Shaffer as Brick.

“The Middle” was created and is executive-produced by Eileen Heisler and DeAnn Heiline. The series is from Warner Bros. Television.


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