More than any current prime time TV series, “Modern Family” has come to define family television. It’s a series that brings generations together to share laughs in the way TV shows did long before there were hundreds of channels. It’s also a series that offers insight on what it means to be a family in America today.
Need proof? Ten episodes from the series first three seasons – considered “the best of ‘Modern Family’ by series co-creators Steve Levitan and Christopher Lloyd – are now available on TV with XFINITY On Demand through October 21 (Go: TV Shows>By Network>USA Network), including the brilliant pilot episode from 2009 that introduced viewers to Jay and Gloria, Phil and Claire, and Mitch and Cam.
If you aren’t on a first-name basis with these characters, you definitely need to click here, lean back, and get ready for a special 22-minute introduction to the Pritchett family. But you’d better clear your calendar. You won’t want to stop there. In fact, you would be missing out on some scenes that will no doubt go down as TV comedy classics, if they aren’t already, like Jay’s awkward encounter with Cam in the locker room after a racquetball game in the episode titled “Moon Landing.”
Watch the show, you’ll get the pun.
Smart, insightful, sharply written and acted, critics immediately hailed the show as TV’s best new comedy. It was quickly embraced as a near classic, and by the time the Wall Street Journal noted the show “descends from a lineage of family sitcoms like ‘All in the Family’ and ‘The Cosby Show’ — programs that broached combustible social issues, but within the safe confines of loving families,” the show was on its way to numerous awards, including an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy, Golden Globes, and a Humanitas prize.
Co-creator Steve Levitan exposed “Modern Family”‘s secret sauce when he said, “Don’t be afraid of the hug, but make sure you earn it.” Catch brand new episodes Wednesday nights on ABC and watch favorites five nights a week on USA Network, which announced a Fan Appreciation Day featuring a live cast table read on Monday, October 28.
But start appreciating ‘Modern Family’ right now with XFINITY On Demand (again Go: TV Shows>By Network>USA Network). In addition to the above-mentioned episodes, here are a few other favorites:
- Family Portrait: In the first-season finale, Claire has her work cut out for her when she organizes a family portrait. Meanwhile, Gloria and Phil take Manny and Alex to a Lakers game; Jay helps Luke with a school project; and Cameron gets a job as a wedding singer.
- Caught in the Act: The Dunphy kids are in for an unpleasant surprise when they deliver breakfast in bed for Phil and Claire’s anniversary. Meanwhile, Mitchell and Cameron covet a table at a hip new restaurant owned by a fellow parent (Rachael Harris) at Lily’s preschool; and an e-mail may spoil a trip to Las Vegas for Jay and Gloria.
- Baby on Board: In the third-season finale, Gloria’s bilingualism comes in handy on Mitchell and Cameron’s quest to adopt another child. Meanwhile, Jay and Manny help Lily get ready for a dance recital; Alex goes to her first prom; and Haley announces her future plans, which come as a shock to her family.