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Modern Family recap: The Party

One party, two pot gummies, and three unexpected pairings lead to one wild mix-up

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Peter Hopper Stone/ABC

Modern Family

type:
TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
tvpgr:
TV-PG
seasons:
7
run date:
09/23/09
broadcaster:
ABC
genre:
Comedy

Didn’t we already learn that it’s never good to keep secrets? Luckily, the secretive high jinks this episode didn’t have any risks of ruining marriages, but even so, keeping a party — and a pot-induced high — quiet weren’t exactly good ideas. Still, the lesson isn’t about covering things up this time; instead, it’s about how to…

Lesson of the Week

Always be prepared.

Claire and Phil dashed out of the Dunphy home to their respective evening events — Claire to a luxurious spa, a job perk, with Gloria (Gloria: “There’s something so relaxing about a bowl of green apples, I already forgot all my problems”); Phil to the movies with fellow nerd Mitch — without setting better babysitting rules. If the two had discussed who would show up at the house to check on the kids, then the fire alarm Manny set off by smoking a cigar — and then lied about by claiming they baked cookies using a broken oven — wouldn’t have attracted both sets of adults home.

But of course, because it’s Manny and Luke, their elaborate plan for a party (they bribe Lily with soda and gather all the cool kids at their school inside Luke’s room when the adults returned to check out the smoke alarm) didn’t work in the end anyway. Classmate Tommy wound up falling out of the upstairs window (but thankfully was unharmed), alerting Claire to what was going on the whole time. And even worse: When Phil and Mitch had arrived to check on things, the two were so stoned out of their minds (thanks for the “special” gummy bears, James!), they could barely contain themselves.

All of this is to say that Claire and Phil should have geared themselves up for a night out slightly better — especially since Luke was one of the primary babysitters — before leaving, Gloria should have been willing to think of Manny as more than just a good boy, and Phil and Mitch should have known that if they were to wait another 45 minutes or so before the film started, it’d be best if they waited at least a little bit before they took the gummies. They wanted to experience being high while the film was playing, after all.

Yes, I’ve been keeping out two of the other players here. But that’s because this week’s…

Most Unexpected Combo

…goes to: Jay and Cam.

Not only did they tell us repeatedly about how uncomfortable they were to spend time alone together, but they also mined hilarity out of their opposing senses of humor and, well, personalities. (The conspicuous discomfort but amusing rapport between the two infrequent scene partners reminded me of the rare — and very funny — scenes Chandler and Phoebe shared every now and then on Friends.) It’s a good thing the two of them bonded over bullying the pair they met at the bar while watching the fight — who knows how much pain they would have been in if they had to keep each other company for all those hours without a distraction!

Family MVP

Phil

But only for spending all episode dressed like this:

Poor Mitch: He may be pale, but he was definitely not dressed up as a pale slave.

Kid MVP

Luke

He was so dedicated to making the party go on without Claire, Gloria, Phil, and Mitch noticing (after all, he was “one dead phone battery from a conversation breaking out” and he really wanted to get to know those exchange students better) that he was even willing to sit down and pose for a “portrait.” And besides, all the reasons he gave for Claire to stop doubting him — “Why don’t you think you deserve happiness?” — were incredibly on point. Luke may be dim, but he’s observant.

Funniest Phil Line

“Guys, I have two words for you: Think about time travel.” — Yeah, it’s all stoned gibberish, but there was a nugget of poignant gold in there.

Snarkiest Lily Moment

When she stood with all of Manny and Luke’s classmates, cradling a bottle of Coke in her arms. Hey, the girl loves soda so much, she’s willing to stand idle around a bunch of teens hiding from adults.

Best Out-of-Context Screencap

How did they find the time to pull this off?! I’m impressed.

Did Everything Turn Out Okay?

Not exactly. Manny and Luke wound up busted, but Manny did confess that he’s more adventurous than his mom believes, while Luke many painful truths about Claire that she’ll have to think about. Lily worked off most of her sugar on that treadmill at the end, and even Cam and Jay bonded — just a little anyway. As for Phil and Mitch? I’m guessing they missed the film, but at least they finally experienced what it’s like to be high on marijuana. I’ll take that as a win.