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Malcolm

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:


Reese

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:


Dewey

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:

  • Anti-Hero: Type II or III
  • Beware the Nice Ones
  • Big Brother Worship: For Francis (well, sort of. They barely interacted before he was deported to Military School, so he doesn't have as much personal worship as Malcolm and Reese).
  • Calling The Parents Out: He frequently manages to get revenge against Hal and Lois whenever they neglect him or treat him unfairly. Hal forgot his birthday led to Dewey publicly shaming him in front of every single attendee at a Bridal expo. Lois saying she couldn't get a vital component to a science experiment (which led to Dewey failing) resulted in Dewey Gaslighting her. And for the most part, he actually gets away with it.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Early in the series.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Ditzy Genius
  • Gender Bender
  • Guile Hero
  • Ignored Epiphany: Tried to explain one to Reese and Malcolm in Buseys Run Away. After finally being put in a normal classroom, Dewey lacks the drive to commit heinous pranks with his brothers like he used to. Therefore, he starts bonding with Lois while Malcolm and Reese keep getting punished. They don't understand what's going on, and Dewey tries to explain that the reason Lois is acting so nice to him, is that he hasn't done anything stupid or destructive, so she hasn't needed to punish him. "It's not her, it's us." His brothers didn't get what he was saying and automatically assumed Lois had somehow corrupted him.
  • Karmic Trickster
  • Manipulative Bastard: Is a master at playing head games; even manages to drive Lois insane in one episode.
  • Only Sane Man: Later in the series.
  • Papa Wolf: Dewey will do everything in his power to protect and nurture the kids in the special classroom, because no one else is willing to.
    • Also to his younger brother, even tricking his own parents to ensure that the younger brother gets the attention from his parents that he himself never got.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Subverted, See Obfuscating Stupidity
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Was willing to do anything to ensure that his brother got even a decent childhood, even if it meant tricking or humiliating his parents in the process.
  • Wicked Cultured

Francis

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:

  • Global Ignorance
  • For the Evulz: Francis basically committed his delinquent behavior either to spite his mother (who told him not to do them) or just for the heck of it.
  • Jerkass
  • Lack of Empathy: As evidenced in the Abusive Brother trope, he did several heinous things, and he implies that this is what being a good brother is all about. Also, he does very terrible and destructive things during his revolts against his parents and is implied to have absolutely no remorse for any people he hurt as a result, and he actually ends up in emotional pain when he has to tell Lois how much she actually shaped his life in a memory that should be a pretty heartwarming memory.
  • Never My Fault: He tries to pin (almost) all of his faults on his mother. In fact, he was legitimately stumped when his C.O. told him to think of one thing that he did wrong that he doesn't blame on his mother. The only time he actually did admit to wrongdoing without blaming his mother or anyone else was when he admitted that it was his fault that his brothers turned out the way they did.
  • Not So Different
  • Playing with Fire: This is what causes Lois to attempt to pull a complete 180 on her raising methods (he nearly set his teddy bear on fire, and the fact that he was pouring gasoline on it and then attempting to light it implied that he was doing so deliberately)
  • Screams Like a Little Girl
  • The Sociopath
  • Too Dumb to Live: Shown in a flashback throwing a knife up in the air then extending his hand out to catch it.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behaviour: As a toddler, Francis attempted to douse his teddy bear with gasoline and then set it on fire before Lois intervened. Later, as a child, he had locked his parents out of the car while his mom was going into labor, and he also frequently tortured his brothers, stole their toys, locked them in a closet, and at one point scarred Reese with a bayonet.

Lois

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:

  • Anti-Hero: Type III <--> Type V, depends on the situation.
  • Anti-Villain: Type II
  • Abusive Parents: Aside from the well known Financial Abuse, she is also implied to be physically abusive, given what Francis commented on what things his brothers should resist in regards to possible methods of extracting who burned her dress, and his resistance to a hazing from a cult on the military school resulted in their adopting Lois's methods. Of course, then again, given his obvious hatred for his mother, it's possible that he either lied about it or led himself to believe it.
    • She originally intended to subvert it, as she intended to make her household lax of rules specifically because she didn't want to have her children go through the life she herself had to put up with Ida. Unfortunately, Francis as a child proved how faulty that line of thought was when he did several bad things which came to a halt when he attempted to douse his teddy bear with gasoline and set it on fire.
    • In addition, she herself was a victim of parental abuse via her mother. It is implied to be far, far worse than anything she puts her own kids through.
  • Because You Can Cope
  • Best Years of Your Life
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Common.
  • Evil Matriarch: On occasion, though other times, the boys just simply see her as this.
  • Financial Abuse: Towards Malcolm.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper
  • Heroic Comedic Sociopath: In "Lois Strikes Back".
  • Hypocrite: In the episode she gets Malcom a job at her store, in a variety of different way. Malcolm calls her out on it repeatedly given how strict and principled she is at home, but she is utterly remorseless about it, spinning it as him learning harsh lessons about life.
  • Jerkass
  • Jury Duty
  • Karma Houdini: Occasionally, but there are other times (i.e. Smunday) where she gets her comeuppance.
  • Karmic Trickster
  • Lack of Empathy: Towards Malcolm.
  • Mama Bear: Toward Reese.
  • My Beloved Smother: To Malcolm.
  • Pitbull Dates Puppy: The "Pitbull" in her relationship with Hal.
  • Took a Level In Kindness: She start to care more for others in later seasons (mostly Reese though).
  • Tsundere: Type A.

Hal

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:

Stevie

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:

Ida

The Tropes that are associated with this character are:

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