Before he was Walter White, Bryan Cranston was Hal — the well-meaning father of child prodigy Malcolm, on Malcolm in the Middle. The show, which got its start in 2000, initally focused on a family of six — Hal, his wife Lois, and their sons. It stayed on the air for seven seasons, based on its funny writing and fantastic cast.
The show is centered around Malcolm, who’s not the oldest or the youngest. His exceptional intelligence puts him in a gifted school, where he sometimes has trouble fitting in. While his family is loving, they’re a bit dysfunctional. He relates most to his older brother Francis, who starts off the show in military school since he’s a bit of a troublemaker back at home.
The show, which aired on Fox, was on for 151 episodes. While the show sometimes runs in syndication, you can watch Malcolm in the Middle online. Here’s the best way to catch up on the show and watch Malcolm in the Middle streaming.
How to Watch Malcolm in the Middle Online & Stream the Complete Series
Among all the streaming services, Hulu has exclusive rights to every episode of Malcolm in the Middle. There are a couple different options when signing up for Hulu, but either one will get you access to the show’s complete library:
If you simply want Hulu’s extensive on-demand library, you can sign up right here. It costs $7.99 per month for the limited commercials plan or $11.99 per month for the no commercials plan.
If you want to go from watching Hulu’s on-demand library to watching MLB games or other live TV without changing the app, you can sign up for “Hulu with Live TV”. This option gives you access to Hulu’s extensive on-demand library, as well as a bundle of 50-plus live TV channels. It costs $39.99 per month for the plan that includes limited commercials with the on-demand content or $43.99 per month for the plan that includes no commercials with the on-demand content.
After signing up for either of the above options, you can watch any episode of Malcolm in the Middle on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Hulu app.
WARNING: Spoilers ahead
How Many Malcolm In The Middle Seasons Are There?
Malcolm in the Middle aired for 7 seasons. The show debuted in 2000 and wrapped up in May of 2006. Here’s a breakdown of every season.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 1
16 Episodes | January 2000 – May 2000
The first season was its shortest, with 16 episodes. The show introduces Malcolm’s family. Malcolm, who’s only 11 when the series starts, is noted as being exceptionally intelligent, with an IQ of 165. He becomes a “Krelboyne” against his will, even though he knows the gifted students often get bullied. The first season also explores the character of Lois, Malcolm’s mom, who often finds herself in moments of pure rage. Francis, Malcolm’s oldest brother, also escapes from military school in an episode to reunite with his girlfriend, who the family isn’t too wild about.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 2
25 Episodes | November 2000 – May 2001
In the first episode of season two, Dewey gets lost — but the family has no idea. The family celebrates Lois’s birthday, but the boys cheap out on gifts while Hal straight up forgets. Hal and Lois also discover that they have another bathroom, which they uncovered after finally cleaning out what they assumed was just a closet. Hal quits his job after a bad time at Dewey’s school “Career Day,” and Reese realizes he’s actually got a knack for cooking.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 3
22 Episodes | November 2001 – May 2002
Lois joins a book club, which she later realizes is just a club where the women drink and complain about their families. Malcolm also gets a girlfriend and changes his priorities. Lois tries to save Christmas, which usually ends in disaster, by threatening to cancel it — and also decides to get a makeover after her secret shopper scores at work are much lower than anticipated.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 4
22 Episodes | November 2002 – May 2003
Season four includes a family zoo trip, Malcolm losing all of his friends, and a prank war between Malcolm and his brother Reese. Reese ends up in prison for a day. Lois and Hal also have another son, named Jamie, in a two-part episode. Prior to his birth, Reese, Malcolm, and Dewey enroll in a parenting class to try and become better brothers for the sake of their youngest sibling.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 5
22 Episodes | November 2003 – May 2004
Malcolm and Reese are both forced to find jobs, and Lois realizes that the entire neighborhood celebrates with a block party during the time their family is on vacation. Hal buys a secret hot tub but doesn’t do the proper maintenance on it. Reese joins the Army near the end of the season.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 6
22 Episodes | November 2004 – May 2005
Hayden Panettiere is featured as Malcolm’s teen neighbor in season six. With less money than ever, the family vows to create homemade gifts for each other during Christmas. Speaking of gifts, Hal also worries about what to get Lois for their 20th anniversary, and the problem is so severe that he starts losing sleep over it. Lois gets a king-sized bed, but it actually causes more marital issues than she thought — but these issues inspire Reese to write a musical.
Malcolm In The Middle Season 7
22 Episodes | September 2005 – May 2006
In the final season, Malcolm and Reese try hard to get to Burning Man, and Hal goes crazy with safety after he realizes the family hasn’t had health insurance coverage for six months. Later in the season, Lois and Malcolm catch mono. Nickelodeon star Larisa Oleynik stars as an army buddy of Reese’s that has a crush on Lois, and Tara Lipinski also has a brief part as a girl Reese has a crush on.
What Are the Best Malcolm In The Middle Episodes?
Malcolm in the Middle had a lot of strong episodes, but there were a few notable ones that fans still reference today. While streaming Malcolm in the Middle, here are the episodes you shouldn’t miss.
Season 1, Episode 13 “Rollerskates”
After Malcolm asks his father to teach him how to rollerskate, viewers learn how passionate Hal really is about skating. He’s a roller disco champion and knows all the stunts. To prep for the episode, Cranston reportedly practiced roller skating every second he wasn’t on set, and his research shines through. His professionalism made the episode, which was already funny, even better.
Season 1, Episode 16 “Water Park”
The season finale of season one features a cameo by Bea Arthur, who stays home to watch a sick Dewey after the rest of his family books a trip to the water park. Malcolm and Reese manage to fight throughout the trip, while Dewey’s sitter — played by Arthur — is taken out in an ambulance after the two dance to ABBA around the house.
Season 2, Episode 20 “Bowling”
Malcolm and Reese get invited to a bowling party, and when they ask their parents to take them, the screen splits — on one side, the audience sees what happens if Hal goes, while the other side shows Lois. Both scenarios are vastly different, but the outcome is the same — each parent thinks the other should have chauffered.
Season 6, Episode 10 “Billboard”
After getting caught vandalizing a billboard that’s advertising a strip club, Malcolm quickly lies and says that he’s doing it out of protest. This act gets media attention, with women’s rights protesters coming by who even create a billboard protest song that includes Malcolm, Dewey, and Reese. This particular episode was directed by Bryan Cranston.
Who Are the Actors in the Malcolm In The Middle Cast?
While shows focused around families come and go, Malcolm in the Middle was a success due to the fact that the cast acted much like a real family. Here are the main cast members.
Frankie Muniz as Malcolm
The star of the show, Malcolm accurately portrayed what growing up in a big family was like. Frankie Muniz starred in a few movies around the same time as the show, but has chosen his acting projects carefully since — and spends a lot of his time on racing cars. He was last seen in an episode of Preacher where he played himself, and at the end of July, it was announced that he’ll help host Dancing With The Stars: Juniors.
Bryan Cranston as Hal
Bryan Cranston proved how versatile he is as an actor after talking on the role of meth king Walter White in the hit series Breaking Bad. Arguably the biggest career to come out of the show, his most recent work was voicing Chief in the Wes Anderson film Isle of Dogs.
Jane Kaczmarek as Lois
Even though she had quite the temper, it was hard not to love Lois — and that was all due to Jane Kaczmarek. The actress has since played Gwen Crawford in Playing House and Captain Jane Lindel in the movie CHIPS.
Erik Per Sullivan as Dewey
While delightful as Dewey, Erik Per Sullivan had a few brief parts before leaving the industry in 2010. Surely, any production would be lucky to have him if he decided to get back into it.
Justin Berfield as Reese
Justin Berfield also quit acting in 2010, with his final credit as a character named Barry in Sons of Tucson. He completed a few projects behind the scenes as a producer since.
Christopher Masterson as Francis
Christopher Masterson, the younger brother of fellow actor Danny Masterson, has been acting professionally since 1988 and is still involved in the business. He recently completed a film called I’d Like to Be Alone Now .
Who Are the Top Guest Stars on Malcolm In The Middle?
A lot of surprising faces pop up on Malcolm in the Middle from the already-mentioned Hayden Panettiere and Bea Arthur, to actors and actresses who’d later be nominated for Oscars. Here’s a list of the most important Malcolm in the Middle guest stars.
Emma Stone as Diane
Emma Stone pops up in a 2006 episode of Malcolm In The Middle, as a girl named Diane who teases Reese with three of her friends. This appearance was right before Superbad, which is typically seen as the film that launched her career.
Dakota Fanning as Emily
Dakota Fanning first appeared in the season two episode “New Neighbors,” playing a neighbor who, much like many characters of the series, bullies Reese.
Ashlee Simpson as High School Girl
Ashlee Simpson’s role was minor, but still important to the episode — in it, she asks Malcolm’s friend Stevie if he’s wearing cologne, in which he responds, “kiss my aftershave.” This appearance was right before she became better known for her music.
Eric Stonestreet as Exterminator
Eric Stonestreet, now known best for Modern Family, popped up on a season one episode as a staff member of Pest Patrol and shared scenes with Hal and Lois.
Octavia Spencer as Cashier
Octavia Spencer plays a cashier who shares a funny scene with Lois in the episode “High School Play.” In it, the two discuss how Lois miraculously has a small amount of free time, a sentiment every mother understands quite well.
Who Are the Writers & Creators Behind Malcolm In The Middle?
Linwood Boomer is known for creating the show, but he wasn’t the only brain behind the hit. Here are the key players behind Malcolm In The Middle.
Linwood Boomer: Malcolm In The Middle Writer and Creator
Prior to Malcolm in the Middle, Linwood Boomer worked 19 episodes of 3rd Rock From The Sun. Most recently, he’s worked on a few episodes of The Mindy Project.
Michael Glouberman: Malcolm In The Middle Producer and Developer
Since wrapping up Malcolm in the Middle in 2006, Glouberman has gone onto working on Aliens in America, Better Off Ted, Mike & Molly, and 2 Broke Girls. Mot recently, he’s credited as the executive producer for The Dangerous Book for Boys.
Andy Bobrow: Malcolm In The Middle Staff Writer Developer
Andy Bobrow was a staff writer for nine episodes of the show, and is credited for writing seven. Since the show, he’s been producing shows like Brooklyn Nine-Nine and The Last Man On Earth.
Gary Murphy: Malcolm In The Middle Co-Executive Producer
Gary Murphy, who was with the show throughout its full run, is currently a co-executive producer on the Netflix original show Alexa & Katie. He also had the role of consulting producer on the 2014 series Jennifer Falls.
Where Malcolm In The Middle Ranks in the Television Pantheon
Malcolm In The Middle was different than normal family sitcoms — even though many of the characters were a little dysfunctional, they all had a heart. And, they all loved each other, even if they didn’t really know how to express that at times. AV Club compared it to The Simpsons, as another show focusing on a lower-middle-class family. “Malcolm and The Simpsons have another important trait in common: Both are grounded in a family that feels real,” they wrote. “This dynamic of overblown storytelling and human character proved remarkably durable for Malcolm In The Middle and allowed the show to keep rolling along for 151 episodes.”
It’s good to know that Malcolm In The Middle found a new home streaming — even though Frankie Muniz and the rest of his fictional brothers have gotten older, he’s still one of the best representations of growing up in the ’90s. It’s possible that this show will always find a fresh audience who’ll be able to relate to it, from Lois’s issues with a short temper to Malcolm’s struggles growing up in a family of brothers who are just a bit dim.