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Moment of Goodness

Moment of Goodness: Frankie’s Meltdown, The Middle “Royal Wedding” 

Photo Credit: ABC

I’ve found myself increasingly interested in the wedding coming Friday despite being sort of meh all along. I think it’s because I loved Diana and so grieved her death 14 years ago that I took a break from the royals. William was allowed a certain amount of privacy in the aftermath of that, so we weren’t overloaded with images of his every move (in the U.S. anyway) and he has become what seems to be a genuinely good, grounded man. So, now that it’s finally here, I’m excited to see him happily wed, perhaps because it’s what eluded his mom. But I digress. I promise there’s a point.

I love Patricia Heaton. Her character, Frankie, has royal wedding fever–big time–in last week’s episode of The Middle. So much so, that she “borrows” a $3,000 flat screen (with the intent of returning it) for the occasion. Her husband, Mike,  reminds her that their home is where things come to die, so I completely expected the TV to take a bullet at some point, but it didn’t. Color me surprised.

Frankie acquires the tea, and scones, which of course, Mike eats. She has the hat. She pockets the TV’s remote so nobody else can damage or watch it. When she gets up at 4 am in a blissfully quiet house to watch the wedding, all by herself, snuggled in a blanket on the couch, she can’t get the TV to work. Thus begins the Patricia Heaton Emmy reel. She wakes up the entire family, begging somebody, anybody to get the TV to work. When all they can program in is soccer, she has a complete, raging meltdown about how much this wedding means to her. How it’s a little magic in the world that a girl can start her day as a regular person and finish it as a princess. In making her point, she accidentally shatters her wedding commemorative plate on the fireplace and then flings herself out of the room. It was genius and I bought every minute of her frustration. Frankie needed this little reality vacation, and it was falling away from her.

The second moment of goodness comes later when the family fixes the TV and gets Frankie back up for the procession out of the church. By then, pink eye has kicked in and she can’t open her eyes, so she cuddles on the couch with the whole family while Mike (who finally gets it) sweetly narrates what he’s seeing–the dress, the kiss–and she’s blissful. It was such a surprisingly sweet, sweet episode.

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