This fall brings new dramas and comedies, new loves, and new hopes, so here is the rundown on what too watch, and what too avoid this fall. Now, ABC is pushing comedies hard and they one they are practically pushing down our throats in Modern Family, should they be…..
Today’s American families come in all shapes and sizes. The cookie cutter mold of man + wife + 2.5 kids is a thing of the past, as it becomes quickly apparent in the bird’s eye view of ABC’s new half-hour comedy, “Modern Family,” which takes an honest and often hilarious look at the composition and complexity of family life in 2009.
Take for example Phil and Claire, two parents who want to have that open, healthy, honest relationship with their three kids. It’s not always easy, especially when you have a teenage daughter who’s growing up a little fast, a too-smart-for-her-own-good middle daughter and a rambunctious boy. On top of that, Phil wants to be the “cool dad,” while Claire is just trying her best to run a tight ship, determined not to let her kids have the rebellious childhood she had.
Then there’s Jay, a true guys’ guy who is having a bit of mid-life crisis. Jay has found a much younger wife, Gloria, who has become the center of his world. She’s a passionate and sassy divorcee who comes with an 11-year-old son, Manny. Already taking notice of girls and a hopeless romantic, Manny is as passionate as his mom and spends his time daydreaming and writing poetry. His new step-father isn’t altogether comfortable with the sensitive stuff and would like to toughen Manny up. But that’s only one of Jay’s challenges. The biggest is that people often mistake him for Gloria’s father, not her husband.
And lastly there’s Mitchell and his partner of five years, Cameron. They’ve just taken that amazing ‘next step’ by adopting a child together from Vietnam. Cameron has a wonderfully big personality and maybe a flare for the dramatic, whereas Mitchell is the more serious of the two. But they balance each other out and are already doting fathers.
Life, it seems, is neither tidy, politically correct or in any way predictable. For these three families, it turns out, are not three but one… one big, blended family, with Jay the patriarch and Claire & Mitchell his grown kids. Yet it’s just such surprises that make things so interesting in this window into the sometimes warm, sometimes twisted embrace of the modern family.
The Good: By far the most laugh-out-loud comedy in a really long time. Modern Family is a brilliantly funny human look at the family, and all the problems that go along with being in one. Every member of the cast is spot on with every actor bringing something in to it that makes it hilarious. I have seen the pilot upwards of twenty times now just because I know I will get laughs every single viewing. Ty Burrell (right) is fantastic as the cool dad to Julie Bowen’s mom. He has some great stuff in the pilot including having to shoot his child and give her daughter’s boyfriend the look down, both of which he does awesomely. The pilot does a great way of showing each of the three families, the traditional, gay, and multiethnic and age, which I know is in the promos but prefer not to tell you because it is that good. Props to ABC for putting a gay couple with a baby on TV, no other network has been that open to sexuality and it really shows in their shows particularly this new comedy. If there is an thing decent in the world, this comedy will bring back THE comedy because this is the funniest thing you will see this year guaranteed.
The Not So Good: Are you crazy you would be hard to find something that is ever remotely bad especially with upcoming guest stars Shelley Long, Elizabeth Banks, and Edward Norton!
Modern Family airs after a special Dancing with the Stars results show on September 23rd in its Wednesday night at 9/8c timeslot.