By Lauren Grimaldi
It’s not often that working class families are portrayed on television with great accuracy. American television is indeed over saturated with an upper middle class ideal of life for people to aspire to.
But ABC’s “The Middle” doesn’t sugarcoat anything, nor does it bend reality to make for a good storyline.
For the past nine seasons, the show has given its audience a glimpse at the life of an average Midwestern family struggling to make ends meet. The Hecks are a simple four person family from Indiana that have come to be one of the most likable families on television over the past few years. They are thankful for what they have, which may not seem like much to some.
Their financial struggles are openly portrayed in the show as they attempt to make ends meet. While doing so, their difficulties remain entertaining and funny to viewers without trying too hard to get a laugh. They look like the average American family because that’s exactly what they are. Instead of sticking to tired sitcom family cliches, “The Middle” has given its viewers one of the most relatable families on television.
The subtle comedy of “The Middle” gives viewers a good storyline and endears its characters into their hearts. As the show reaches its finale, it must be said that The Hecks are one of television’s most underrated families.
However, in all of its nine seasons, “The Middle” has not once gotten political or controversial. There is something to be said for that. It seems almost implausible that a working class family like The Hecks would have nothing to say about politics or elections.
Perhaps the writers are playing it safe so as not to anger viewers, but the danger of this moment in American history is one that cannot be ignored. Of course, this is merely a television show. But its otherwise accurate portrayal of an average American family is damaged by ignoring the real struggles that the working class faces in the current world.
“The Middle” will always bring viewers a good laugh with its commentary on the everyday minutiae of life, but it could also have been much better had writers decided to take a risk and comment on the political realities that harm real families like The Hecks.
Four out of five Torches