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TV Review: MODERN FAMILY Season 4

Modern_Family_S4_DVD_sm7lxrMODERN FAMILY SEASON 4

Starring Ed O’Neill, Sofia Vergara, Ty Burrell, Julie Bowen, Eric Stonestreet and Jesse Tyler Ferguson

Well, folks, they’ve done it again. Everyone’s favourite family sitcom, MODERN FAMILY, walked away with its fourth consecutive Emmy win for Outstanding Comedy Series, a feat that is only surpassed by one other sitcom in television history (“Frasier” won fives years in a row). The win prompted some chatter in the media the next day that perhaps it was a safe choice for Emmy voters and not necessarily as deserved as in previous years. The season that took home the trophy is now available to own though so in case you missed it when it aired, or in case you want to watch it again and again, you can. And then you can judge for yourself whether the win was deserved, as I will do right now.

In order for a show to keep people coming back year on year, there are a few elements that are absolutely necessary. The first is, at least in the case of a comedy series, you need to actually be funny. There is no denying that MODERN FAMILY is certainly one of the most consistently hilarious shows around, nailing both intelligent wit and physical humour to provide something for everyone. Aside from the stellar writing talent behind these jokes, MODERN FAMILY can also boast having the most cohesive and well rounded ensembles currently on the air. Again, there is someone for everyone to love here. My personal favourite has to be Luke (Nolan Gould); that kid always sneaks in with the most random moments of unexpected hilarity.


The last thing a good series needs to keep going strong after the honeymoon phase is growth. These characters need to go somewhere but they also can’t steer too far off course or you run the risk of alienating your bigger fans. In past seasons, I’ve found that MODERN FAMILY hasn’t pushed itself too far outside its comfort zone. Instead the shifts from one season to the next have been fairly subtle. The fourth season is different. Aside from the most obvious change (Sofia Vergara’s Gloria is pregnant!), the series is forced to also deal with natural, unavoidable changes. In the Dunphy household, Haley (Sarah Hyland) goes off to college, Alex (Ariel Winter) struggles to find herself and Luke discovers girls. This leads Claire and Phil (Julie Bowen and Ty Burrell) to take a long look at where their lives are going. Meanwhile, Cameron and Mitchell (Eric Stonestreet and Jesse Tyler Ferguson) face life without the son they wanted to adopt and realize they still have plenty with their ever blossoming, Lily (Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, who has shockingly amazing comedic timing and delivery for a six-year-old).

I find MODERN FAMILY to be simply one of the most rewatchable shows on television today. Its syndication debut this year will also surely boost its audience, which has been growing year on year, to all new heights. Only time will tell if it will go on to tie the record “Frasier” set but if this solid fourth season is supposed to be the weakest the show has ever been, then they have nothing to worry about.


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