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The Middle - Bat Out of Heck - Review

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“Bat Out of Heck” begins with Axl deciding to trade in his Winnebago for a car. This makes me sad. The Winnebago has been a big part of The Middle and a big part of Axl’s life. It’s just another reminder that this show is ending. When he tells his parents he gets annoyed with Mike because he thinks his dad always tells him what to do.

Later in the episode Axl forgets to buy chips at the grocery, and Mike says he should have written down that he needed chips. Axl says the store was out, which is a complete lie, but he just doesn’t want to listen to his dad anymore. He really wants his dad to think the store was out so he gets Brick to pretend to be “Dustin” at the Frugal Hoosier. Brick’s accent was great. But Brick goes a step too far when he tells Mike the store has a great sub special. Brick and Axl then have to make a sub and pretend like they bought.

Mike and Axl go to the car dealership that Frankie used to work at, and it turns out they hired a lady worse than Frankie. Mike does all the talking and makes a deal right then without Axl being involved at all. Axl finally tells Mike that he doesn’t need him to do everything for him anymore. Mike says there’s still a lot that Axl needs to learn. Axl makes a good point that the things he does aren’t dumb, just different. Mike asks him why he didn’t say anything, and Axl says that he wanted to talk as adults. Mike tells Axl that he did a good job, and tosses Axl the car keys. I was proud of Axl for standing up for himself and having an adult conversation with his dad.

While Axl is busy trying to be an adult, Frankie tries to sell peanut brittle from Brick’s school. Frankie’s boss offers to buy all 25 boxes because he loves peanut brittle. Dr. Goodwin really wants it, and doesn’t understand that it needs to be ordered. He even gets so mad that he gets out of his car and makes Frankie drive it. (He can’t kick her out of the car because he’s a gentleman.) I’ve never seen someone get so bent out of shape over peanut brittle.

Sue is busy this week applying for a prestigious scholarship for her major. The application has 10 essay questions which Sue finds very difficult, and she freaks out. He tells Frankie that she just doesn’t want to try to get this- she wants it. She gets very excited when she learns she’s a finalist. The scholarship committee thinks Sue has a “certain quality” which excites her so much she falls off her bed.

Sue has to do an interview from home so she tries to find the best spot in the house to use as the background. She thinks she’s found it, and prepares to start. Just as she begins the interview, the dentist rings the doorbell. Time is up, he says.

As Sue interviews for the scholarship, Dr. Goodwin yells at Frankie about the peanut brittle. Frankie wants to know what’s wrong with him because no one actually wants to buy the things kids sell. You only buy it because your co-worker guilts you into it. As she yells a bat flies in. Frankie yells at Mike and Axl to do something, and Axl turns to his dad because he’s older and wiser. I laughed when he said that.

Sue gets the bat into Axl’s room as she continues to interview. Dr. Goodwin goes in and makes terrible sounds trying to take care of things. Except he doesn’t really do anything as the bat flies out. Everyone runs around the house, and Sue loses focus. She apologizes to the interviewer and turns the laptop around so he can see what’s going on.

It turns out the interviewer thought Sue performed well under pressure, and she gets the scholarship! She wants to give to Mike because she feels bad that he had to sell his diaper business. It’s a sweet gesture, but it turns out the scholarship is only $200.

I think the scenes of everyone chasing the bat while Sue walks around the house interviewing were hilarious. I could have done with a little less of Dr. Goodwin, but this episode was fun. And we even had a breakthrough in Mike and Axl’s relationship.

What did you think of this episode? What did you think of Mike and Axl? Did you love Sue’s story this week? Discuss below!

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