The Middle 5.18 Review: “The Smell”

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Lucky for us, The Middle isn’t presented in smell-o-vision.  A particularly rancid smell is haunting the Heck household in this episode.

When Frankie described the stench as “a cross between baby spit up and rotting animal flesh,” I gagged because that even sounds extremely repulsive.  I don’t know how it took them so long to figure out that it was coming from Brick.  Of course as soon as they do figure out it’s him, she rushes him to a drug store to stock up on hygiene products.  She mistakenly didn’t go into specifics for appropriate usage, and next thing you know Brick’s gone off to the other extreme of using all the products at once.

The reason Mike’s been too busy to help with Brick’s problem was because he’d been duped into coaching the girls’ soccer team.  Sue was beyond ecstatic to accept a spot on the team without even having to try out, so Mike felt obligated to stick around even after the previous coach was so quick to ditch him after initially bringing him on as an assistant coach.

Mike soon learns why this coaching position isn’t the most desirable considering the quality of the players.  The funniest girl on the team first lost an earring on the field that was given to her by her boyfriend for their six week anniversary, and she was so upset that they had to stop practice to find it.  Later at a game she was laying down on the ground crying and when Mike asked where she was hurt, she dramatically said her heart because her boyfriend broke up with her.

Eventually Mike passed the coaching position onto another gullible dad who showed up for a practice, so Mike could then show Brick how to appropriately apply deodorant without overdoing it.  I only hope this isn’t the last we see of the soccer team now that Sue is a part of it!

Axl was finally back at school but still trying to decipher the meaning behind Cassidy’s painting from their spring break.  He can’t decide if it means they’re broken up or still together, so he asks some girls in the dorm for their opinions.  Naturally the girls start to see him in a different light as a sensitive soul and they all start making moves on him.  Before he does anything, he gives in and calls Cassidy to tell her he just doesn’t “get” the painting.   As soon as he tells her this, it all starts clicking and he talks himself through their obvious breakup.  He’s not visibly heartbroken as he finds himself embraced by all the girls in the dorm who were helping him decode the mystery earlier, and his friend even takes the painting to find some girls to pity him too.

[Photo via Michael Ansell/ABC]

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