What a family of animals. No, really: This episode, Cam snatched a goat, Claire got a trio of baby ducks to tail her, and Dylan’s still hanging around the Dunphy house. It’s a downright zoo. So, to fast forward — bloop bloop — here’s every zoo-y exhibit we visited this episode:
Birds of (Claire Dunphy as) Prey
Fine, this exhibit name doesn’t make total sense, but you know you loved that image of Claire looking like she just walked off the set of Hitchcock’s The Birds. That moment came at the end of a very long day for Claire, as she struggled to impress Jay and his “pretentious creative team” (meaning they go to work on skateboards and are generally too hip for corporate) with her ideas for new closet designs. The Ambassador? It’s a no. The Hide-a-way Hamper? Also a no. The Rustic Revival? Oh, don’t even think about it.
Dejected, Claire heads to a lunch with Jay and a client when Jay tries to cheer her up. He tells her he might have been a bit too harsh in the meeting, as after all, he’s “just tired of everyone always pitching their closet ideas.” He encourages her to keep trying, and when he leaves the table, Claire takes his words to heart. Alas, when she attempts another pitch, she opens her bag to find only duck feed, attracting a flock of birds and, well, you saw what happened next. Speaking of duck feed…
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Phil Dunphy’s World of Birds
Remember those eggs Phil and Luke discovered a few weeks back? Phil can’t get enough of them. He’s embarked on a mission to build the baby ducks a village so they’ll have the best home when they hatch. And sure, it’s been a month since they brought the eggs home, but Phil’s not losing hope. He’ll do anything, thanks to his “childlike sense of wonder,” like building tiny mailboxes (for a “Quack Nicholson,” no less), storing duck feed in kitchen cabinets (and that’s right, Phil: “Phil, duck feed” does sound like your name!), and even attempting to warm them by pointing his rear at the nest. Although not a single family member agrees to help him on his quest, he manages to find a partner in Lily, who’s forced to stay and accompany him. But while showing off his duck village, this happens:
(How to Get Away With Murder fans, I believe this image is the meaning of “Eggs 911″…and a sign that I need to get better Wi-Fi.)
The two head to buy more supplies, but while they’re away, Claire returns home and ends up hearing a crack. And then another…and another…until all the eggs have hatched, and Phil has missed the miracle and the chance to get imprinted on. By the time the ducks are cheerfully waddling around the Dunphy residence, they’ve learned to follow Claire, not Phil. It’s okay, Phil! Here’s hoping “Duckingham Palace” comes to good use.
NEXT: Cam and Mitch have a baaaaaaad day[pagebreak]
Tigress Mountain, featuring Gloria and Manny
The main attraction for Gloria: a glorious telenovela star whose character leads a life that’s uncannily like Gloria’s and, therefore, makes Gloria wish she could be said star’s best friend. The main attraction for Manny: a barista named Chelsea who serves him his favorite overly complicated coffee and, therefore, makes Manny wish he had the guts to ask her out. So, to achieve both of their goals, Gloria drags Manny along on her quest to meet the star, a quest that involves waiting in a hotel lobby nearby for her to come down from her hotel room and then ambushing her and inviting her over for dinner. At the same time, Manny will spend the day working up courage to be just as confident as his mother.
Unfortunately, Gloria melts into a puddle when the actress appears. Instead of extending an invitation, she babbles. Similarly, Manny has little luck getting his words out; he buys two Christmas CDs and a muffin he didn’t need while stalling and failing. But after Manny witnesses his usually perfect mother fall to pieces in front of her idol, Manny knows he can’t do worse, and ends up calling Chelsea and getting her to agree to a date in a coffee shop — one in which she doesn’t have to make the coffee, of course.
Cam and Mitch’s Children’s Zoo
There’s a goat, a whining Mitch, and a malleable Cam, so yes, “children’s zoo” defines their plot this week. Cam switches up his personality to become a — as Mitch puts it — “bromosexual,” and it irks Mitch to see Cam so likable, so capable of changing his ways to fit the tenants who pass through their Artful Lodgers residence. Then again, when one of the frat bros looks like Chase (is that with 12 S’s, Mitch?) there on the left…
…can you really blame Cam?
Jealous Mitch can. He word vomits his feelings to Luke, who’s just trying to learn how to drive, and by the time they run into Cam, both Mitch and Cam are ready to smooth things over. See, Cam had been out with the bros and went so far as to dress up as a pizza guy, set off fireworks in the house of a rival frat bro group (frat bro gang? frat bro squad?), and steal the frat’s poor goat.
Cam apologizes for being a personality pushover, and Mitch starts to apologize for being harsh until he realizes the two of them have reconciled. By that time, though, the frat bros Cam had been hanging out with are over Cam not wanting to go through with the rest of their prank, so they drive off, leaving Mitch and Cam with a goat and an apathetic Luke. “I ain’t afraid of no goats,” Luke says as they pile into his car. (Who you gonna call if that goat ruins your car, Luke?)
So with that, everyone got a happy ending! Except Gloria, who never became BFFs with the actress. And Phil, who didn’t become the parent the ducks imprinted on. And, I guess, Haley and Dylan, who got a whopping total of two minutes of screen time. Oh, and Cam, who realized he’s easily swayed by the people around him. And… oh never mind, bloop bloop, let’s move on to the…
Line of the Night: “Maybe you used up all those words ordering coffee.” — Gloria to Manny, when he says he can’t come up with the words when he’s in front of his barista crush. (Honorable Mention: Mitch’s “Cam doesn’t change the sheets as much as he changes his personality.” Hey, it’s a good zinger!)
Family MVP: Phil. He put in so much effort to give the ducks a good home and tried to pursue a project that would bring his family together. That’s admirable, even if it didn’t work out for him in the end. Either way, at least they got this lovely, slighty crazed duck family photo: