Only a few months ago, the hit ABC show The Middle came to a conclusion after nine seasons of the Heck family’s many mishaps. Among the most beloved characters on the show was Sue’s best friend Brad Bottig, who came out as gay in season seven. Brock Ciarlelli portrayed Brad in all of the show’s 56 episodes, so we are wondering if he will return to play Sue’s friend in the new spinoff Sue Sue in the City.
In season one, Brad was introduced as Sue’s flamboyant boyfriend but they broke up when Sue learned that he smoked cigarettes. Over the course of the series, Brad evolved into Sue’s mainstay ride or die best friend. While Sue suspected Brad was gay, he never came out to her until season seven when he revealed his sexuality.
The Middle’s Brad coming out scene was a pivotal moment for the show and the LGBTQIA+ community. It helped to normalize the relationship between a straight and a gay character on a TV show and highlighted the struggles that LGBTQIA+ teenagers may face when coming out to their families.
Brock Ciarlelli’s portrayal of Brad was so authentic that he was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award. He has been recognized for his work as a positive representation of LGBTQIA+ individuals and has helped to increase the visibility of these communities on television.
We hope to see Brad back in the future on the new series, and we can’t wait to find out what adventures Sue and her friends have in store for them!