Perhaps the reason Malcolm in the Middle
's Jane Kaczmarek
is so convincing as a harried mom on the Fox series is because she herself grew up in a family with four kids ? and one toilet.
"Until I was finished with sixth grade, we grew up in a house in Milwaukee, with four kids and my mom and my dad," she tells TV Guide Channel. "We had one bathroom, which is what the family in Malcolm has, which [we] never thought was odd. There was a toilet in the basement. You learned to really function very cooperatively with one toilet, and it just seemed like the most normal thing in the world.
"I love that that is the case on Malcolm, because I think a lot of people grew up that way," she says. "There's a certain familiarity about that."
Kaczmarek recently did double mom duty on Malcolm and Felicity, playing the mom of Julie (Amy Jo Johnson) on the teen drama. "I'm addicted to Felicity," she says. "I think Keri Russell is one of the best actresses in America. It's in New York, which I'm just crazy about. I just love that show!"