This is what Charlie McDermott from The Middle looks like today

Charlie McDermott rose to fame as Axl Heck — the too-cool-for-school son of Patricia Heaton’s Frankie Heck and Neil Flynn’s Mike Heck — on the hit ABC sitcom The Middle, which ran for almost a decade between 2009 and 2018 and Us Nine seasons of fun brought by the dysfunctional Orson, Indiana family. “It’s not because we’ve run out of stories. We had a whole bunch of stories that we never got to. Show co-creator Eileen Heisler told Deadline why there wouldn’t be a 10th season. “We never wanted to get to the point where we’re re-creating old stories or where someone’s feeling uneasy and wishing they were somewhere else. We wanted to go out while we were still at the top of our game,” he added of the sitcom, which also starred Eden Sher and Atticus Shaffer.

Since then, McDermott has landed a handful of acting roles, including as Stewart in Mark Wahlberg’s film Instant Family (via IMDb), three episodes of the miniseries Unbelievable, and appeared in the tech horror Countdown. But what does he actually look like since he left high school jock turned college grad Axl?

Charlie McDermott kept Axl’s signature curls

It looks like Charlie McDermott was happy to keep his “The Middle” character Axl Heck’s signature curly hairstyle — and then some! In a February 2021 Instagram post, McDermott showed off longer, shoulder-length locks while taking in stunning mountaintop scenery. The captioned upload included a snap of Patricia Heaton’s former on-screen son giving the camera a cheeky look over his shoulder while wearing round glasses, an oversized blue t-shirt and brown trousers.

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The star has rocked the same look on his other creative foray, as it seems the actor has turned his attention more to music since saying goodbye to The Middle. He often gives fans updates on his music through his Instagram account, including teasing a music video for the song “Park and Ride,” which he contributed to. In the video, McDermott can be seen driving into the woods before wandering around in the trees and being pursued by a mysterious red-hooded girl. Far from being a creepy version of Little Red Riding Hood, it turns out the woman just wants to return the car keys he lost. Ah, we love happy endings!

What Charlie McDermott is doing today

It seems that Charlie McDermott’s main focus is on his singing career, but he clearly hasn’t lost his interest in moving images. The long-haired star has shown his passion for working behind the camera on his Instagram account, including sharing a storyboard he created for the ‘Park and Ride’ music video in August 2021. The actor previously opened up about how much he loves the production side of things in 2017 when he directed an episode of “The Middle.” “Directing is something I’ve always wanted to do since the show started. So I’ve looked on set quite a bit since the show started, even all the projects I worked on before ‘The Middle,'” he told Entertainment Weekly. “So it’s something I’ve been preparing for a long, long time. When it finally came, I felt like I had a good grip on it,” he added.

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But it seems the star has taken a small step away from the spotlight. He doesn’t tend to share too much on social media and only occasionally gives fans a glimpse of how he looks today, with most of his posts focusing on his work. McDermott doesn’t appear to be the biggest fan of excessive sharing on social media, either, as his most recent post in July 2022 was his August 2021 storyboard sneak peek.