Last Man Standing starring Tim Allen is an American sitcom about the life of Mike Baxter as he exists between his hypermasculine workplace at Outdoor Man and his all-female home, with his wife and three daughters. After the shocking cancellation following season 6, the show was picked up on another network and is now beginning its eighth season.
The show has taken on some controversial topics as conservative and liberal characters clash over real-world issues. When a show takes sides on polarizing topics, there are hits and misses. These are the worst-reviewed episodes of the series since its start, according to IMDb voters.
10 "Adrenaline" (7.3)
In the 17th episode of the 1st season, the Baxter family finds themselves reminiscent of their more adventurous selves. Vanessa is nostalgic for the days before she was a mom and the exciting things she used to do. Mike is also pinning for the action-packed days.
The store is hosting NASCAR driver Tony Stewart and his official racecar for a promotional event that brings forth Mike's desire for adventure. The Baxter family members get themselves into quite the predicaments while they are pursuing the lives they used to lead.
9 "Renaming Boyd's School" (7.3)
Season three's 14th episode shows the Baxter family during questionable times. A school assignment to research the school's namesake reveals some problematic history the family members are outraged and prompt the school to consider renaming.
The history of the school's namesake brings into question whether upsetting pasts should be overlooked for traditions. The family brings the issues to the school board's attention and ask for actions to be taken. As this is occurring Mandy exploits the housecleaner's knowledge to complete a school assignment, which causes issues within the household.
8 "Tree of Strife" (7.2)
In the 1st season's 16th episode, Mike takes on the city council after they make a demand. The city council gives Mike an order to remove a tree on his property, which he refuses to do and decides to protest the issue. Mike takes a stand against the council because he feels they have no say in what he does with his property, even though the tree is damaged and dying.
He gets his family involved and they take sides on what should be done, reminiscing about the memories they have surrounding the tree. Mike, ultimately, realizes the hazard of the tree and that he had more sentiment than he lead on.
7 "Attractive Architect" (7.2)
In the 9th episode of season two, Mike and Vanessa both find themselves in a position questioning whether employment is based on looks or talent. Mike is unsure who to hire between Outdoor Man's longtime architect and the young, attractive female candidate.
Meanwhile, Vanessa earns herself a promotion but she starts to question, after overhearing the other applicants talking, whether she got the promotion based on merit or because she is an attractive woman. Vanessa works in a male-dominated field and as an attractive woman, she questions if that gives her an advantage over other women in her field.
6 "What's in a Name?" (7.2)
In season two's 13th episode, Mike deals with the return of his grandson's absent father. Since Boyd's birth, he went by the surname Baxter because his father was not a part of their lives. After the return and reconciliation of Boyd's father, Ryan, Kristen considers giving Boyd his dad's surname.
When Mike hears of this possibility, he becomes offended by the notion and tries to convince them it would be a mistake. The complicated dynamic between Kristen and Ryan is further complicated by Mike Baxter and his opinions.
5 "Dodgeball Club" (7.1)
In season two's 2nd episode, Mike is concerned with the fact that Boyd and his friends don't have the opportunity to build character if they can't play games, like dodgeball. Mike oversteps his role as a grandparent and makes an executive decision on how Boyd should be raised.
Mike goes behind Boyd's parents' backs and organizes a secret dodgeball club for the kids. The kids all enjoy playing the game but when Boyd gets hit in the face and the club is uncovered, Mike faces backlash from the parents.
4 "Ed's Twice Ex-Wife" (7.1)
In the 4th episode of season two, the characters try to not make mistakes. Kristen is apprehensive about hiring Mandy at the diner where she is working, despite Mandy's insistence that she will do well. At Outdoor Man, Ed becomes with his ex-wife, Wanda, who he has already married and divorced twice.
Ed still has feelings for her and wants to give it another try with her, despite their history. Mike, meanwhile, tries his best to stay out of the situation but can't help but try and solve the problems and is surprised to find that Vanessa didn't agree with his assessment.
3 "Mother Fracker" (7.1)
In the 5th episode of season two, Vanessa finds herself in a predicament after giving a presentation to Eve's class. Vanessa, who is a geologist, gives a presentation on career day about the work that she does, which includes fracking. After the presentation, Eve's classmates accuse her of destroying the planet and Eve wants her mother to quit her job.
Vanessa is shocked that she is seen as the bad guy and tries to explain the importance of her work and all the ways she is trying to do good. The Baxter women try to find common ground on the issue and understand each other's perspectives.
2 "Circle of Life" (7.1)
In the 6th episode of season two, Mike takes on the topics of life and death. When Mike brings home a duck from his hunting trip, he tries to explain the circle of life to Boyd. Ryan wants Boyd to become a vegetarian and Kristen does not want him to know that meat is dead animals yet.
Mike butts heads with Ryan about hunting, meat-eating, and how Boyd should be raised. Mike talks to Boyd about all those things and tries to convince him that there is nothing wrong with them, while Ryan tries to do the same thing from his point of view.
1 "Voting" (6.2)
The 2nd season is the lowest rated season so far and the premiere is perhaps the worst episode of the series. In this episode, the Baxter family is divided as the time to vote between presidential candidates approaches. The family members try to persuade Mandy, who recently became of voting age, to vote in the way they see fit.
This episode demonstrates the polarizing division between people when it comes to politics. Everyone in the family and all their friends have their own opinions on what is the right decision; in the end, Mandy makes her own decision. The Baxter's realize they have let each other have their opinions.