Just Like Family: "Modern Family" at Its BestBy Jennifer Jarett
At its best, the "Modern Family" family is just like every family.
Now on USA Network five nights a week, the past four seasons of the award-winning comedy "Modern Family" are jam-packed with zany story lines and snappy dialogue. With so many great moments, who could choose a favorite? We asked star Sofia Vergara to tell us about hers.
Perhaps what makes the hijinks on "Modern Family" resonate with fans is that they remind us that all families are the same: They are the people we love, who drive us the craziest. Our spouses, siblings, parents, and children may sometimes bring out the worst us in us, but we stick with them because they also bring out our best—sometimes when we least expect it. So here are the top moments of the "Modern Family" gang bringing out the best—and sometimes the hilariously worst—in each other (including Sofia's favorite).
"Great Expectations" (Season 1, Episode 8)
Claire tries to make up for a bad anniversary gift by hiring the session player bass guitarist (played by Edward Norton) of Spandau Ballet to sing "True," the song to which they fell in love. They quickly discover that their song is actually "If You Leave," by OMD—which is ironically a breakup song.
The Sting of a Scorpion
"Fizbo" (Season 1, Episode 9)
Family competition reaches a fever pitch for Luke’s birthday: the craft station, rock wall, bouncy castle, animal handler, and Cam’s "Fizbo the Clown" costume are just the beginning. (Insider note: Eric Stonestreet used to perform as a clown named Fizbo!)
Next Time, Take the Elevator
"My Funky Valentine" (Season 1, Episode 15)
Claire and Phil try to spice things up by playing sexy strangers who meet at a hotel bar. Things don’t go as planned—and there are witnesses.
"Starry Night" (Season 1, Episode 18)
Sometimes the best moments in “Modern Family” are the most moving. What starts out as jealousy over a father/son bonding trip turns into a heartfelt talk that shows off “Modern Family” at its best.
It’s Not Really Work If You Love It!
"Strangers on a Treadmill" (Season 2, Episode 4)
Alex treads in territory Hayley understands: A popular girl shows interest in becoming friends with Alex, and Hayley teaches her the art of playing hard to get. And it works—until Alex’s true self (and true feelings about homework) shine through.
The Life in Her Voice (Sofia’s Favorite)
"Halloween" (Season 2, Episode 6)
Gloria starts to feel insecure about her accent and madness ensues at Claire’s Halloween party. In a single moment, we see that there really is more to Gloria and Jay’s relationship than just an older rich man married to a trophy wife.
The Student Becomes the Teacher
"Slow Down Your Neighbors" (Season 2, Episode 11)
Luke decides to rid Gloria of her fear of riding a bike—by any means necessary.
"Princess Party" (Season 2, Episode 15)
Shelley Long guest stars as Dede, Jay's ex-wife, the mother of Claire and Mitchell, and the center of conflict—when she shows up for dinner with Claire's ex-boyfriend, Robbie, played by Matt Dillon.
"Door to Door" (Season 3, Episode 4)
Phil encapsulates his relationship with Luke when he says, "I've always said that if my son thinks of me as one of his idiot friends, I've succeeded as a dad." In this episode, Phil succeeds.
In the Land of the Nerds, the Girl in the Physics T-Shirt Is Queen
"After the Fire" (Season 3, Episode 8)
Roles are reversed when a group of bullies—nerd bullies, to be exact—exert their force over Luke and Manny, and Alex puts her unique charms (including a physics t-shirt) to work. Alex tells a stunned Hayley, "You have your fans, I have mine. And some day your fans are going to work for my fans."
Who's Using Whom
"Send Out the Clowns" (Season 3, Episode 18)
When the most popular boy in class suddenly befriends Manny, Jay and Gloria grow suspicious—but Manny shows that he knows exactly what he is doing.
The Principal's Office
"Schooled" (Season 4, Episode 2)
Cam and Mitchell square off against another set of parents—two mothers. No line of dialogue is wasted, everything is funny until it's funnier, and the couples prove that regardless of gender, the parental dynamic is universal.
Catch "Modern Family" five nights a week on USA Network.