I too feel that we have seen too much of Ida lately. During the scene where Lois had arrived and Ida felt she was being embarrassed, I wanted to turn off the TV. That scene dragged on far too long, and Ida's voice grew to sound like nails against a chalk board. I horribly disliked that storyline, and therefore could take nothing further from it than an increased hate from Ida.
But maybe we can work to evaluate Ida and Cloris Leachman's portrayal of her. We've seen this "witch" since season 2's The Grandparents, and she was instantly established as a cruel character. She is not your typical grandmother, and she doesn't want to be. The boys don't try to make her be. Hal would like his mother-in-law dead. But I'm off-topic; what I'm trying to say is, why is it that we hate Ida so much? What about her has led us to hate her?
At first I thought, Dewey's deafness would be a permanent addition to the show, and I think it would have been entertaining to see it last a bit longer, but we need to work with what we have been given. I am quite surprised appanah did not try to decode the symbolism of the deafness. In an earlier thread, nearly everyone agreed that everything can be analysed, even if it is not intended to be. Therefore, I want to pose the question: What does the deafness symbolize? (or for you Europeans (that was for you TJ), symbolise?)
I think it could be any number of things. Before going deaf, Malcolm was purposely deaf to the world and music and its opportunities; Dewey was purposely deaf to other things, as appanah mentioned. Maybe, however, it represents society's deafness to people who are different than us. Ida is not a "normal" grandmother and people decide that they dislike her. We see no sympathy--no human qualities--in Ida until Ida Loses a Leg. If we had been listening, maybe he had seen it in earlier episodes, as well.
Ahh, but Boomer intended for us not to hear it; thus, he assumed the position of the typical audience member, and wrote what he wanted us to hear. We are deaf to Ida because society is deaf to Ida.
Or, maybe that was all too deep, and it was just another annoying Ida episode. No emmies here. I hope I was politically correct enough for everyone.