Malcolm in the Middle

Season 2 Episode 20


Aired Sunday 8:30 PM Apr 01, 2001 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
113 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Malcolm and Reese go bowling. In one scenario, it is Hal that is with them and in the other Lois. Either way, disaster ensues. Meanwhile, at home, Dewey makes elaborated plans against either parent he is with, to let him watch TV.

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  • Separate the two different scenarios for the 'Bowling' Episode.

    I'm only asking the person who directed the Bowling episode on April 1st, 2001. If that person could separate the two scenarios and show one of them, I think that would be great. For example: If it's Obama, show the one scenario: Lois takes the boys bowling, she keeps embarrassing Malcolm because Malcolm can't get a single one (or at lease hit a pin). Lois also finds out that their parents left them alone and so she takes command. Malcolm and Reese also try to win a girl's love (Reese unsuccessfully does, while Malcolm got so embarrassed in his final attempt to get a strike, that she confronts him saying it was a bad way to treat him and finally kissing him). And Hal stays at home with Dewey, Dewey got to sleep earlier. Dewey succeeds in putting Hal to sleep so he can watch television, order pizza, drink cola (although in the episode they don't show what the brand was), and et cetera while Hal was asleep. Dewey's plan worked and he could enjoy the night before Lois could get back. If it's McCain, show the one scenario: Hal takes the boys bowling, he lets Malcolm and Reese play by themselves while he is busy trying to get a perfect game and have his name placed onto the plaque of the bowling alley. Malcolm also beats Reese in getting the girl and goes somewhere alone, eventually ruining the night for Hal, since he doesn't get a perfect game thanks to Malcolm. Another thing that happened when Hal took the boys bowling is that Malcolm found it easier to get a strike. And Lois stays with Dewey, Dewey is also sent to bed early. Dewey tries everything he can to watch some television, but Lois sees through Dewey's tricks. At the end, he was only allowed to watch television for 20 minutes, but it had to be something Dewey wouldn't enjoy -- C-SPAN. Show it around 12:00 Midnight after the election. Thanks for your cooperationmoreless
  • Best Malcolm In The Middle episode?


    Grade: A*

    So this episode of Malcolm In The Middle was amazing! It had alot of good quotes, funny moments, and a clever use of split-screening on two different scenarios in a 20 minute episode. I think it was really interesting to see how the events played out, and many different things happened as a result.

    The episode starts off with Malcolm and Reese going to a bowling party, in which the scenario is split into two "what-if" like stories. One of them is when Lois takes them to bowling, and the other being Hal. The one who doesn't go has to look after Dewey for punishment in the house after killing a Parakeet.

    With Lois' side of the story, Malcolm and Reese are supervised by Lois the whole time after she finds out that the party is unattended by any parents or guardians. As Hal stole her money, she can only afford to buy the boys one pair of bowling shoes. Malcolm keeps getting pressured by Lois on trying to get better at bowling, in which he keeps getting gutterballs, whilst Reese tries to tell a joke to a girl he likes, in which always fails due to his turn to bowl after Lois always calls him. Lois tries to help Malcolm by embarrasingly giving him a kids bowling ball, and the bumpers up, but still can't score a strike. Malcolm at the end loses his temper to Lois and goes right up to the pins, and says "You want a strike! I'll give you a strike! Here's your damn strike!" and violently throws the ball at the pins, still missing by going at the sides. Malcolm is constantly harrassed by everyone as a result, being called "Connie", but the girl that likes him feels sorry for him, and in the end she lets him kiss her, which he enjoys and annoys Lois as a result.

    On Hal's side of the story, he lets Malcolm and Reese have their freedom to do whatever they want, and Reese tells the girl he likes the whole joke this time, only to make the girl hate him as a result. Hal bowls himself, and keeps getting perfect scores after doing a different "ready" routine each time before he bowls, and attracts a crowd as a result. After bowling a few balls with decent scores, Malcolm attemps to talk to a girl, and this makes Reese jealous and annoyed, and to try and get back at him, he throws a bowling ball from the far side of the alley to try and hit him, but hits a much larger boy instead. Reese tries to run away, whilst Malcolm and the girl head to the back of the bowling pins to make out. Hal reaches his final strike to score a perfect 300, and as he bowls, Malcolm gets caught on the pin machine and tossed onto Hal's pins, causing a perfect 300 score. Everyone thinks he rigged the last one, and walk away unhappy with the game. Whilst Malcolm and Hal try to leave, Reese gets caught by the larger boy and gets beaten up in a photo booth.

    In Lois' Dewey sidestory, Dewey attempts to fake being sad in which Lois successfully avoids taking in to being fooled in letting him watch TV and leave his room. After leaving him in the room for so long, Lois slightly feels bad and can't decide to being either strict or lenient to him. In the end, she lets Dewey out, but only on the condition that he watches something he doesn't like, in this case "C-SPAN"

    On Hal's Dewey sidestory, Hal is more lenient to Dewey and decides to read him a bedtime story to stop him feeling upset. However, Hal falls asleep and this gives Dewey the whole house to himself. He stays up watching R-rated movies and ordering Pizza with Hal's credit cards.

    In both scenarios of the Dewey storyline too, Francis also phones up to see if either one of his parents will let him borrow money, in which both of them refuse to give it with their own explanations.

    When the boys and the parents come back, both Lois and Hal in the Dewey timeline quickly move things to make them less suspicious (Lois takes Dewey back to bed, whilst Dewey moves a tired Hal onto the couch to make it look like he fell asleep whilst eating). The boys come back, and the parents go "so how did it go?", in which they both say on the split-screen "Next time, you take them!"

    Overall one of the best Malcolm In The Middle episodes due to its decent plot, alot of good jokes, and an interesting premise. It was funny seeing how both scenarios were quite different, yet had a different conclusion on all of the characters. Overall, Bowling is an awesome episode and quite possibly my favourite Malcolm In The Middle episode.moreless
  • Malcolm and Reese have a bowling game scheduled with their schoolmates, including girls. This episode shows us two alternate courses of action simultaneously; one where Lois takes them and Hal stays home with Dewey and other where the opposite happens.moreless

    This is definitely my favourite episode of Malcolm in the Middle. The writing was work of staggering genius and the acting was also fantastic. It is curious to notice that either with Hal or Lois, Malcolm eventually beats Reese and gets the girl, when theoretically Malcolm would be the braniac and Reese the one who gets the girls. It just came to show us that Malcolm can do both; he's a genius and he gets the girls he wants. Another interesting aspect is the influence Lois has on Malcolm. When she's around, Malcolm simply can't play properly, whereas he excels at bowling when Hal takes him. As to Dewey, Lois managed to control him pretty well, but Hal was completely fooled. It shows that Lois is the only one capable of bringing the boys up. Hal's perfect game sequence was also incredibly funny and the way Malcolm interfered and spoiled everything... simply hilarious. In addition, besides the amazing plot, the episode is full of humor (Malcolm standing up to Lois, advancing through the alley and still faling is undoubtfully one of the best moments of the series). In my opinion, it contains some of best jokes in the season. For, it's the best episode of this amzaing series. It clearly deserved the Emmy nominations. In fact, it should have won.moreless
  • My favorite episode so far!

    Malcolm and Reese go to a bowling party. It shows two different scenarios, if Hal took them, or if Lois took them.

    When Lois takes them, she decides to chaperone it and since Malcolm is a terrible bowler, she embarrasses him by trying to help him. He keeps getting gutters. Meanwhile, Reese is trying to woo the prettiest girl in school. Dewey is left alone with Hal, but he is in trouble. He gets out of it by fake crying and getting Hal to read a story. Hal falls asleep and Dewey does whatever he wants. Malcolm explodes at Lois and walks over to the pins and tells her that he'll get the strike she wants. He throws the ball, but it misses every pin, even though he is a few inches away. Reese and everyone else make fun of him, which makes the girl like Malcolm instead. Malcolm and the girl make out.

    When Hal takes them, he doesn't chaperone, but stays to bowl lanes away from them. He is getting strike after strike and he believes that everything has to stay the same in order for it to keep going. Reese tries to impress the prettiest girl at school, but messes up with a lame joke. Malcolm, who is now a good bowler, woos her instead. They go to a place where they can be alone, the place where the pins are in the back. When trying to kiss, Malcolm's shirt gets caught. Hal is one strike away from a perfect game, but as the ball is rolling, Malcolm drops down from the thing and knocks over the pins. The ball hits him. Meanwhile, Lois isn't falling for any of Dewey's tricks.

    This episode was funny! Very unique and interesting! I love the ending! This episode gets a 10 out of 10 from me!moreless
  • Malcolm and Reece go bowling but it shows to different scenarios one with Lois taking them and one with Hal taking them.

    This episode was great it was so funny how Malcolm missed all the pins from a meter away. Also Hal was going so well in bowling going for a perfect game. It was weird though because he did the same routine each time he would drink move his head side to side scratch his left leg with his right leg then before he lets go of the bowling ball he says some weird word which was hilarious.

    When Malcolm and Reece went with the mum Malcolm did terrible in bowling but got to kiss that girl they were fighting over. Reece was fine the whole time and made fun of Malcolm. When they were with their dad Malcolm was good at bowling and Reece bowled the bowl on to some guys leg which then he was chased by him.

    This episode was awesome like all the others.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • In the second last frame that Hal bowls, he takes a drink, walks up the to lane, unzips his pants and says "Gesundheit" and bowls a strike, when he turns around he sees a guy leaving to go to the bathroom and starts pleading with him that everything has to be in the same place and finally the guy says he'll stay. Hal then turns around to repeat the steps he's taken, including unzipping his pants; however, he never zipped them back up because he was too busy pleading with the guy.

  • QUOTES (15)

    • Hal: (the crowd leaves) 3-0-0! 3-0-0! 3-0-oh!

    • Lois: Okay, we are gonna watch TV, but it's something you're not gonna enjoy... C-SPAN. That ought to do it.

    • (scene splits at the same time; Hal's side)
      Lois: So, how'd it go?
      Hal: Next time, you take them.
      (Lois' side)
      Hal: So, how'd it go?
      Lois: Next time, you take them.

    • Beth: Do you want to kiss me?
      Malcolm: What do you think, I'm stupid that I... (pauses, then kisses Beth)
      Lois: (breaks the love scene) That is enough! You are just as bad as your father!!!

    • Dewey: Why can't I go?
      Lois: Because you are staying in your room! You are being punished! And on Monday, you're buying your teacher a new parakeet!
      Dewey: Aw, Dad?
      Hal: You heard your mother. She and I are a united front!

    • Malcolm: We're ready. Who's gonna take us.
      (scene splits into Hal & Lois at the same time; Lois' side)
      Lois: (to Malcolm & Reese) I'll take you. (to Dewey) YOU! TO YOUR ROOM! MARCH!!
      (Hal's side)
      Hal: (to Malcom & Reese) I'll take you. (to Dewey) Come on, sport. I'll race you to your room.

    • Lois: (at home with Dewey, when she hears him fake crying in his bedroom passing by) Not buying it!

    • Hal: Reese, get out of that photo booth!
      (Reese pops out and sees the guy tracking him)
      Reese: Oh, hi! I'll get out of your way.
      (the guy pushes Reese in the booth and punches him; there are photo strips of him getting beaten up)

    • Reese: Way to go, Connie!!!!
      (everyone chants "Connie")
      Reese: Oh, man. That was classic. (to Beth) Okay, let's make out.
      Beth: (disgusted) I don't think so.

      Lois: Malcolm, come back here!!
      Malcolm: YOU WANT A STRIKE?! I'LL GIVE YOU A STRIKE!!! HERE'S YOUR DAMN STRIKE!!!! (throws the ball and misses; everyone starts laughing; Malcolm is humiliated)

    • Lois: You are not giving up until you bowl a strike!
      Guy: You're mother's right, Connie.
      Malcolm: MY NAME IS NOT CONNIE!!!

    • (scene splits into Hal side and Lois side; Malcolm is bowling; on Hal's side, Malcolm makes a strike; On Lois', he misses, at the same time...)
      Malcolm: (Lois' side) I hate bowling!!
      Malcolm: (Hal's side) I love bowling!!

    • Beth: My roll.
      Malcolm: (happy voice) Maybe it is. (to the camera) I can't seem to stop talking like this.
      (scene changes)
      Lois: Stop talking like that, Malcolm.

    • Lois: (to the clerk) Hi, I need two pairs of shoes. Size 9 and size 7. (looks inside her purse) Where did all my money go? I only have $6. (to the clerk) I'll have one pair of shoes. Size 8. You boys can share.
      Malcolm: But Reese isn't wearing any socks!
      Reese: I'm not sticking my socks in those nasty shoes!

    • Dewey (to pizza boy): I'm not sure how much to pay you. Is one credit card enough?
      Pizza Boy: Ah, better make that two.

  • NOTES (7)