12:15pm PT by Kate Stanhope
'The Middle's' Final Season Extended at ABC
ABC isn't ready to say goodbye to The Middle quite yet.
The network has ordered an additional two episodes of the family comedy, bringing the season nine total to 24 episodes. The Patricia Heaton half-hour is set to end after this current season.
The order comes ahead of the Warner Bros. TV production's 200th episode, which is set to air Dec. 8.
Earlier this week, veteran ABC drama Grey's Anatomy and fellow family comedies Black-ish and American Housewife also had their respective seasons each extended by two episodes.
The extension has almost become standard protocol for The Middle, which has been a solid performer since season one. Every season of the series has run 24 episodes, two beyond the standard order, except season eight, which ran 23.