Barry Garron from Reuters selected Modern Family as one of the top 10 TV series of the decade:
Every decade has its landmark TV shows, and there will or should never be complete agreement on which 10 series belong at the top of the list.
10. MODERN FAMILY
* ABC, 2009-present
It’s a little risky to pick a new show as one of the best of the decade, even after seeing about a dozen episodes. In the case of “Modern Family,” the risk is minimized by the track record of its creators, Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd. At a time when most new shows are just finding themselves, this one has been so consistently funny, smartly produced and crisply written that it has all the earmarks of a classic in the making.
Boston.com has a great review of ABC’s Modern Family, here is part of it:
Maybe it was when 10-year-old Manny put down his newspaper to get another cup of espresso, like a little executive Buddha, or maybe it was when he insisted on wearing his traditional Colombian poncho to grade school, that it came to me: “Modern Family’’ is an instantly lived-in and fleshed-out sitcom. The ABC comedy arrived in September fully formed, filled with the rich inner life that usually only exists on a TV series over time. The characters are already indelible.
And that’s a rare thing, especially for a sitcom. Good half-hour comedies usually take many months to find themselves, to define their individuality (see: “Seinfeld’’). ABC’s “Better Off Ted’’ and NBC’s “Parks and Recreation’’ – both series with promise – are currently following that more familiar route, trying to discover their distinctive mojo while they’re on the air, hoping not to become just more brokedown sitcom chassis by the side of the road.
Each a member of the sitcom class of 2009 and each a single-camera show, “Modern Family,’’ “Better Off Ted,’’ and “Parks and Recreation’’ actually stand a chance of joining the likes of “Scrubs’’ and “Extras’’ in the canon. “Better Off Ted,’’ which returns for season 2 on Dec. 8, is a solid setup crying out for tweaks; “Parks and Recreation,’’ now in season 2, has just been nicely tweaked; and “Modern Family’’ is in need of no tweaks whatsoever. It is just right. They represent three marks on the map to sitcom excellence, with “Modern Family’’ already having reached the destination point.
Created by Steven Levitan (“Just Shoot Me’’) and Christopher Lloyd (“Frasier’’), “Modern Family’’ is a rare pleasure. The family dynamic among the large collection of characters feels thoroughly established, as if their histories are genuinely interwoven. Ed O’Neill’s Jay is the father – of Claire, who’s married to Phil and has three kids, and of Mitchell, who’s living with Cameron and has an infant daughter. Jay has a second family, too, with a much-younger wife, Gloria, from Colombia and a stepson, the inimitable Manny. When the three families interact, you can see all the casual intimacy, resentment, stubbornness, and forgiveness of an extended family in play.
Within the group chemistry, each character is finely etched. Among the most vivid are Cameron (Eric Stonestreet), a queeny gay man who once played football, and Gloria (Sofia Vergara), who unwittingly torments her husband with stories of her early sex life. And, of course, there’s Manny (Rico Rodriguez), the little guy who swoons over older girls and fences like a royal prince. These characters are already beautifully established, and yet you can detect the actors’ pleasure as they discover more and more about their roles with each episode.
Read the rest of the review at Boston.com
For a young man who grows up in Ashland, getting the acting bug must be as easy as falling off a log. Right? After all, the Southern Oregon town is home to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, known for its world-class productions and top-flight casts.
But for Ty Burrell, the Oregon native who co-stars on the ABC comedy, “Modern Family,” the whole acting thing took a while.
“What do they say about not taking advantage of things in your hometown?” Burrell says, calling from Los Angeles. “You know, if you’re in Paris, you never go see the Eiffel Tower? I didn’t go to see a play at the festival until I was in my early 20s.”
But fans of “Modern Family” — the show averages 10.6 million viewers weekly — know Burrell has become a gifted actor, moving easily between drama and comedy. Burrell, 42, has performed onstage in New York and London; in movies (“The Incredible Hulk,” “Black Hawk Down”); and on TV (“Back to You”).
Oregon Live spoke with Burrell about his own family, acting and his Oregon roots. Here are some of the Q&As:
Q: How much of the character of Phil is based on you or your family?
A: I mainly just drew on myself — sadly (laughs). Phil’s inability to see how he’s goofing and messing things up comes directly from my own delusional, oblivious existence. It’s magnified with people that I’ve met over the years, people who I’ve really liked because I think that type of person is just so full of life.
Q: What were your younger days in Oregon like?
A: I was born in Grants Pass and grew up in Ashland. We also spent about eight years in Applegate, where my family owned a little country store. That was an amazing time, lots of lazy summer days, floating down the Applegate River on inner tubes. In many ways, it was absurd because we had no business being out in the country because we were extremely soft! I graduated from Hidden Valley High School.
Q: When did you get interested in acting? Was that something others in your family had done?
A: Nobody in my family, at any level, had ever had any connection to performing or show business. I will say, though, that there’s a long history of raconteurs in my family. My grandfather was a great storyteller, and my dad and his brother would get going and were very funny together. My younger brother, Duncan, and I really watched that a lot and admired it. The official term would be we got into comedy when we were young. But we really just got into goofing off when we were kids.
Read the rest of the story Oregon Live
‘Modern Family,’ it will be Christmas to “Undeck the Halls”
CHRISTMAS CHEER IS A LITTLE MIXED AS EACH HOUSEHOLD GETS READY FOR THE HOLIDAYS, ON ABC’S “MODERN FAMILY”
“Undeck the Halls” – Christmas is in full swing at the Dunphy house until the kids get in some trouble and Phil and Claire threaten to take away Christmas until one of them fesses up.
Meanwhile, Jay struggles with wanting to stick to his holiday traditions while Gloria and Manny want to incorporate some of their Colombian practices, and Mitchell and Cameron take Lily to the mall for her first picture with Santa — but end up with a disgruntled mall Santa on their hands.
Look for “Modern Family,” TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15 (8:00-8:30 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network. (Rebroadcast: OAD: 12/9/09)
“Modern Family” stars Ed O’Neill as Jay Pritchett, Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy, Ty Burrell as Phil Dunphy, Sofía Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett, Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell Pritchett, Eric Stonestreet as Cameron, Sarah Hyland as Haley Dunphy, Nolan Gould as Luke Dunphy, Ariel Winter as Alex Dunphy and Rico Rodriguez as Manny Delgado.
Guest cast include Fred Willard as Phil’s dad, Brian T. Finney as Scott and Jeremy Scott Johnson as Andrew.
“Undeck the Halls” was written by Dan O’Shannon and directed by Randall Einhorn.
Fast National ratings for Wednesday, November 25, 2009.
Airing new episodes on the night before Thanksgiving led to series-low ratings for programs like “Modern Family,” “Cougar Town,” “Eastwick” and “Glee.” The pending holiday had no negative impact on CBS’ “Criminal Minds, though,” which celebrated its 100th episode and helped give CBS easy Wednesday wins in most key measures.
Among adults 18-49, CBS averaged a 2.6 rating, beating NBC’s 2.4 rating and the 2.0 rating for FOX in the key demographic. ABC’s 1.7 rating was fourth, with The CW trailing with a 0.4 rating.
Overall, CBS averaged an estimated 11.03 million viewers to go with a 6.7 rating/12 share. NBC was a distant second with a 4.1/7, followed by FOX’s 3.3/6 and the 3.2/6 for ABC. The CW’s 0.8/1 was fifth.
NBC began the night in first with a 4.6/8 for a “The Biggest Loser: Where Are They Now” special, which also won the hour in the key demo with a 2.6 rating. CBS’ “The New Adventures of Old Christine” and “Gary Unmarried” had a 4.1/7 for second, with ABC’s “Modern Family” repeat and a new “The Middle” doing a 3.5/6 for third. FOX’s “So You Think You Can Dance” results episode was fourth with a 3.0/5. The CW aired the movie “Gracie” and finished fifth.
CBS moved into first at 9 p.m. with an 8.2/14 for “Criminal Minds,” which also won the hour with a 3.1 rating in the key demo. NBC’s “Biggest Loser” special was steady in second. ABC finished third with “Modern Family” and “Cougar Town” plummeting to a 3.7/6 overall and a 2.2 rating in the demo. Also proving the danger of airing new episodes on a holiday eve was “Glee,” which had a 3.5/6 overall and dropped to a 2.5 rating in the demo. The CW’s movie had a 0.8/1.
[Source: Hit Fix]
The annual Kansas City Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony will be held on Friday, November 27, 2009 at 5:30 p.m.
Kansas City native Eric Stonestreet, star of ABC’sModern Family, will be on hand for the festivities. The 100-foot-tall Mayor’s Christmas Tree is one of the tallest in the United States, and is the centerpiece for this holiday celebration.
The Mayor’s Christmas Tree Ceremony is located in Crown Center Square.
[source: Kansas City on the cheap ]
Courtesy of @ericstonestreet comes Fizbo’s one and only business card when Eric Stonestreet was 13.
Happy birthday Luke!
The 10 best lines from last night’s episode of Modern Family based on EW (in descending order):
10. “Let’s tuck our pants into our socks.”
9. “Yeah, you’re right. I don’t need it. An extension cord works pretty good.”
8. “I used to have a machete, but times have changed.”
7. “People are gonna stare. They’re not used to seeing one clown in a car.”
6. “Girlfriend’s gonna get stung!”
5. “I’ve tried everything to get her attention. Opening doors, having a milk sent over in the cafeteria. Nothing’s worked.”
4. “A gift card? Who hurt you?”
3. “She can’t go 10 minutes without her boyfriend’s tongue in her mouth. It’s like he’s feeding a baby bird.”
2. “Let me know if you get low on supplies. I’ll make a quick run back to the 1950s for you.”
1. “I am brave. Roller coasters? I love ‘em. Scary movies? I’ve seen Ghostbusters like seven times. I regularly drive through neighborhoods that have only recently been gentrified. So yeah, I’m pretty much not afraid of anything.”
And some review from Alan Sepinwall:
The highlight of “Fizbo” was, of course, Fizbo himself, and how seriously Cam/Eric Stonestreet threw himself into the part. Every time I think that the contrast of Cam’s gregarious nature and Mitchell’s more introverted, judgmental qualities is going to get old, we get a hysterical talking head like the one where Cameron outlined the four types of clowns, followed by Mitchell creating the marvelous assembly of words that is “weird gay clown uncle.”
Rico Rodriguez continues to be wonderful as Manny. The character doesn’t know how to tell the Interrupting Cow joke (or its funnier/more aggressive spin-off, Interrupting Starfish), but Rodriguez can even find a way to make Manny’s sad bouncing funny. (Gloria being ogled by the dads was more predictable, but when you put Sofia Vergara on a show with a bouncy castle, some things just have to happen the way they’re gonna, I suppose.)
We got a more sarcastic side of Phil than usual (I liked him offering to go on a supply run to the 1950s to get Claire some more crafts), which then nicely offset his pathological clown fear.
A very funny, very satisfying episode, and one that’ll hold me until the next new one in two weeks.
Eric Stonestreet from Modern Family tool EW’s “Pop Culture Personality Test”. Here are some of his answers:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Clowns: Scary or Misunderstood?
ERIC STONESTREET: Misunderstood. But you’re talking to someone who’s always been fascinated with clowns, so I might be biased. Growing up [in Kansas], I wanted to be a clown and run away with the circus. I created a clown character that I would do for kids’ birthday parties and stuff like that. That’s how the inspiration for “Fizbo” started. Fizbo is my real clown name from when I was kid. I have business cards printed up with it on. [The show's writers] just liked hearing the stories, so they thought it would be funny if Cameron brought back his clown character.
The most embarrassing song on your iPod?
I consider myself the least music snob in the world, and actually, I like to make fun of music snobs. I’m not ashamed to rock out to an ‘N Sync song, Backstreet Boys, Wreckx-N-Effect. If it’s on my iPod, it’s there for a reason. Sometimes it’s an impulse purchase for me off iTunes, but I’m a big music guy. I’m proud of all my [checks his iPod] 5,400 songs.