In a great pick-up from last week, Arlo (Nick Shafer), Brick’s friend, returned last night to The Middle. And while he didn’t have much to add conversationally, he played a critical role in what was perhaps the funniest story of the night: Brick’s shows.
Arlo and Brick put on the first one, “Alien Robot,” which was a resounding success (just go with it as if you were their parent). The sequel was a bit rocky. And by play number three, the first of Brick’s one-man shows, the wheels had come right off the cart. By that point he was just flickering the lights and calling for attention for the sake of doing it. I loved it!
Mike’s critique that the plays were “endless and boring” brought back some fond memories for me. I have two older sisters, and back when we were younger I found a stack of radio play scripts from my parents’ days in summer camp. I’d use the captive audience of family dinners to read the plays in a monotone voice, driving everyone crazy. It’s a wonderful memory that still gets dragged out to this day … aren’t siblings the best? Anyway, I also loved it when Mike refused to apologize for what he said, to which Brick responded “Thanks for following me in here to hit that home.”
I’m totally lost on where prom has evolved to in the years since I was in high school. Axl keeps talking about picking girls up in the final weeks before prom … for my prom we had to make our dates far enough in advance that we could buy tickets, get tuxedos and dresses, and reserve limos. I guess you could slap that all together, but would one of the A-listers Axl was hoping to scoop up settle for that? Plus, asking out dates via text? Classy.
Despite that I enjoyed the battle Axl waged with Mike and Frankie. Best was when Frankie got the call from Weird Ashleigh’s mother and she tried to restrain Axl one-handed; his ensuing shirt escape was awesome. And good for him for doing the right thing … given the situation I don’t know that I would have been able to, despite Reverend TimTom’s (Paul Hipp) advice. That cape? No way.
I enjoyed Sue’s story, and I was glad that for once it didn’t end as horribly humiliating as her tales usually do. She merely discovered that “B” table kids are just as shallow as everyone else. Her mating dance to make it to Samantha’s (Shanley Caswell) table — the actual approach aside — was great, and I loved when she failed her first few times out. She was goofy, but not embarrassed (at least not publicly).
Two other great moments: I really liked TimTom’s song, “It’s hard being a parent.” It is, but that’s not why I enjoyed it … I just did.
Also, cute play on words by Sue: Sue Cards are her version of cue cards. Hey, it’s creative!
“Uh, I’ve gotta get out of this.” – Axl, on his date with Weird Ashleigh
“Axl, what is wrong with you? How would you feel if some girl did that to you?” – Frankie
“I don’t know. How would I feel if dogs ran the planet? You’re not making sense. Although that would be pretty cool.” – Axl