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I have been meaning to write about Modern Family for awhile now. Simply put: the show is hilarious. For those that haven’t watched yet (if not, I suggest you hit up Hulu asap and start from the beginning) it is a mockumentary style show following the lives of three families at various levels of transition. I could spend a lengthy piece summing up the broad points of the show, but I won’t. Just go and watch. You won’t regret it. For those that have been watching, I have some thoughts on last night’s episode “Run For Your Wife.”
The first thing that struck me during the episode was, “Wait, are we watching these episodes out of order?” “Run For Your Wife,” centered around the kids in the various families going to school for their first day. This concept is fine except that last week’s episode had the parents in said school working out a fight between the sons. Whaaaaaa? This is a fairly big oversight on the part of the writers. I couldn’t tell if they chose to show this episode second because other plot points trumped the timeline or if it was merely a mistake. If it is a mistake, it's a pretty big one. Shows gain trust based on consistency and they gain traction with the idea that we connect with the characters and arc. Ignoring a basic timeline marks a huge red flag. Does it ruin Modern Family? Of course not, but it does make me begin to question what other mistakes the show has made.
Of all the dynamics on the show, and there are some great ones, the relationship between Mitchell and Cameron trumps them all. Judging by some blogs, even in 2009 it is a fairly big controversy for a broadcast company to have two gay men living together and raising a young, adopted child. In last night’s episode they have to take Lily to the doctor after she bumps her head (because of Mitchell’s over-exuberance). What really struck me though, was the conversation Mitchell and Cameron had at the end in the parking lot. While discussing their parenting styles, they settle on the idea that they both complement each other in ways that will help Lily have the best life possible. This was immediately followed by them realizing they had locked the keys (and Lily) in the car, a huge freak-out session, yelling and Cameron threatening to throw a garbage can through the window to extricate their daughter. An absolutely classic scene that extenuates the idea (and Modern Family does this perfectly) that no matter what you do as a parent, or how good of a relationship you have with a spouse or your kids, there are tons of mistakes to be made along the way.
Timing issues aside, Modern Family continues to impress with each week. Truly successful comedies combine humor with a sense of reality. Modern Family does both and keeps getting better.
Other random highlights:
- I imagine a little of myself in Ty right down to him sitting down on the couch and ruining his wife’s first real day to herself. Being married is great.
- Nice job on the writers part to have Gloria reach her limit with Rico’s individualism. Every parent must feel that strain between “Let them be themselves,” and “Oh my god, my kid is about to play a Colombian flute in front of all the kids in his grade.”