Patricia Heaton may not know how her ABC sitcom will end, but she knows what she’d like to see happen — and the inspiration comes from a surprising place.
Few probably think of ABC’s middle America comedy and HBO’s Six Feet Under in the same breath, but Heaton is looking to the drama for her own dream ending.
“I can tell you that one of my favorite series finales ever was Six Feet Under where you flash forward and see them at each of their funerals,” she tells EW. “I don’t see us taking it that far, but I think a lot of people want to know what happens. Something like that. I personally would enjoy that. I don’t know if that’s what the writers have in mind, but I think a lot of people would like to know where everything’s headed.”
One thing Heaton knows for certain? The ending is going to pluck at the heartstrings of the entire cast and crew. “It’s going to be really emotional,” she says. “I remember Everybody Loves Raymond was just, I couldn’t stop sobbing.”
She won’t, however, be sad to part with Frankie Heck’s poor fashion sense (Heaton wears a wig on the show). “I will not miss her wardrobe or her hair,” she says. “I am dying to play, like, a lawyer or an architect or the head of a fashion house or something. I only got into this business because of the glamour. And not only have I been playing a mom for 18 years, but they’re not glamorous, they don’t live in Beverly Hills.”
Though much is up in the air for the characters, Heaton promises some “romantic intrigue” in the final season. She’s rooting for her TV daughter Sue Heck (Eden Sher) and next-door neighbor Sean Donahue (Beau Wirick) to finally get together. “I know a lot of our fans are hoping they get together too,” she says.
The final season of The Middle premieres on Oct. 3 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.