Throughout The Middle, whenever The Heck family goes through difficult situations they illustrate positive thinking, as expressed in the article, “Resignation and Positive Thinking in the Working-Class Family Sitcom,” from the Atlantic Journal of Communication. For example, whenever the Heck family is in a tight situation, whether it be money related or not, they are always optimistic and look to find a way to work at it to make it better. An episode this is shown in is Season 6 episode 7, Thanksgiving VI. During this episode, the Heck family was realizing how much of a financial crisis they were actually approaching. Their kitchen sink was broken, useless, and recently renamed “the kitchen sinkhole” by the kids. Frankie Heck was currently working two jobs and they were also without a dining room table at the time. Since Frankie is known for trying to make everything the best it can be, she suggested the family still have a Thanksgiving meal, but just do it at the local buffet. She told each one of her kids to invite someone so she could keep everyone happy. However, that of course went south when the father, Mike, seemed to not like the daught-
er, Sue’s, boyfriend; Brick’s quirky girlfriend Cindy also made it awkward when all she ordered from the buffet was a wedge of cheese. While things were going downhill during dinner, it made Frankie think that this might be the first Thanksgiving that she is really not thankful for anything. At the end of the episode, as dinner was ending, she went out to the car pondering about how much her life stunk as she waited for everyone to finish up. As she was sitting on the car her husband Mike hit her with a snow ball. Initially she was mad, until he did it again and she realized that even if she did not have all the luxuries in the world, whether it be eating dinner at their dining room table or having all the money in the world, at least she had her family. This is what started a huge snow ball fight outside of the restaurant in which all other customers began to participate in. From what looked as if a horrible night, turned into a night each Heck would always cherish.
It also talks about their determination. Not being able to afford a dining room table or all of the food needed to prepare for Thanksgiving, they were determined to have a big family dinner together. Even though this family might not have all the luxuries as some people, they make the best of what they have and become closer as a family through all the good times and the bad.