In an episode about reaching your potential, “The Big Game” did just that. Modern Family never ceases to impress me. While the episode two weeks ago was a bit of a letdown, last night was back in full swing. Every family member’s story nicely followed a central theme.
In “The Big Game,” each character has personal challenges that they are having trouble overcoming. For the first time in his career as a realtor, Phil may not sell a house this month. A prideful Cam is desperate for his freshmen football team to win their game. Alex tries to get kids at school to realize she exists. Claire attempts to impress her colleagues, while Jay gets in the way by trying to bond with Claire. Mitch lacks the courage to quit his job. Eventually, all the characters succeed in their quests through amusing resolutions. Or, following the title, they all win their games.
Like its characters, this episode gets a high score. Modern Family is one of those shows that is a big crowd pleaser, and it’s easy to see why. All the characters are both unique and relatable; it makes it hard to pinpoint your favorite one. It has great one-liners that draw out huge laughs. And after those laughs, sometimes you are so touched, you even cry. This show is like an intricate embroidery, in which every stitch is carefully placed, and each one counts.
The episode was penned by Megan Ganz, who recently joined the show after writing for Community for the last three years. Before that she wrote for The Onion, where she honed her skills in joke-making. Let’s take a look at some of this week’s memorable jokes:
Phil, on his children not having a positive attitude: “I’ve never seen such a bunch of no-getters.”
Phil, on not quitting: “There is no ‘done’ in Dunphy”
Lily, on her crush: “He likes the swings, he sits by the flags, and he can count to a hundred.”
Gloria, giving Lily advice to go for the boy she likes: “You don’t want to wake up one morning as a lonely 9-year-old wondering where all the time went.”
Dylan, on his old high school: “This place is like a home to me. It’s like I was homeschooled. But I wasn’t, I was school-schooled.”