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Come join the family for the hilarious and critically acclaimed breakout hit of the year! Featuring an all-star cast led by Ed O’Neill, Sofia Vargara, Julie Bowen, and Ty Burrell, Modern Family takes a refreshing and funny view of what it means to raise a family in this hectic day and age. Multi-cultural relationships, adoption, and same-sex marriage are just a few of the timely issues faced by the show’s three wildly-diverse broods. No matter the size or shape, family always comes first in this hilariously “modern” look at life, love, and laughter.
The handheld, observational, fake documentary format complete with character interview segments has become a sitcom device so familiar and accessible, thanks to the success of The Office and Parks and Recreation, that it doesn't feel at all like a rip-off in Modern Family. In fact, the technique seems to be entirely its own in this fresh, smart, and very funny show that premiered to immediate acclaim in 2009. Three affluent Southern California households--the Delgado-Pritchetts, the Dunphys, and the Pritchett-Tuckers--thrum with uproarious life and bustling activities showcased in pithy episode arcs that are neat, if not always tidy. The homes and lifestyles are glossy and well ordered, yet simultaneously full of the chaos and commonplace confusion that make up real life for real modern families everywhere. Each of the 10 personalities in the ensemble is expertly nuanced, a feat that should be credited not only to the show's creators Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd, but also to actors who have without exception been impeccably cast. Each one takes care to bring the tiniest detail of comic shading to their abundant interaction and to the equally important element of their own personal and wildly idiosyncratic character business.
Ed O'Neill plays patriarch Jay Pritchett, a man who's made his bundle, divorced his first wife, and finally found true happiness with Gloria, a much younger Colombian woman who seems to have bounced off the set of a risqué Univision quiz show. Her 10-year-old son Manny, who exhibits many of the traits of a 30-year-old Lothario, completes the first of the unusual family units. The Dunphy household comprises Jay's daughter Claire, her dorky husband Phil, and their three kids, Haley, Alex, and Luke. Phil Dunphy (Ty Burrell) fancies himself a cool dad who's his kids' best friend. But despite his zealous best intentions he's really just an embarrassment, sometimes most of all to Claire (Julie Bowen), who often treats him like her fourth child. Household three is occupied by Jay's gay son Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and his partner Cameron (Eric Stonestreet), who bring home an adopted Vietnamese baby in the pilot episode for them and everyone else to fawn over. The comic combinations of controlled nuclear family explosions precipitated by this episodic mix are consistently filled with an unending string of gags that burn the full range of comic fuel from gentle smiles to full-on guffaws. There are nominal story threads (we're not in the land of Seinfeld's "no hugging, no learning" edict), but most of the entertainment comes from throwaway lines and the kind of interaction that feels more like expert improv tossed off by seasoned pros than it does scripted TV farce. There's also a fair amount of precisely executed physical comedy, especially around the Dunphy household (Ty Burrell is highly skilled in the practice of bodily buffoonery), and the show never shies away from either playing up or laying to rest the stereotypes and clichés it brings up with good-natured abandon. Gay people act gay! Latin people are hot-blooded! Kids are stupid! Parents are clueless!
It's also fun to see some famous faces appear as guests or in cameo roles--Edward Norton, Minnie Driver, Elizabeth Banks, Benjamin Bratt, Shelley Long--all of whom clearly get the joke and are having a great time joining in (especially good is Fred Willard, who was born to play Phil's dad). The four-disc set has a limited number of special features that include some back story bits about the actors and how some of the show's themes developed from the real lives of the writers' real modern families. Best of all are extended scenes and outtakes from the family interview segments that only enhance the casual hilarity that rolls so effortlessly from character to character throughout each episode. It's easy to look forward to time spent in the company of the Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan. --Ted Fry
Disc 1: Deleted, extended and alternate scenes Deleted family interviews
Disc 2: Deleted, extended and alternate scenes Deleted family interviews
Disc 3: Deleted, extended and alternate scenes Deleted family interviews
Disc 4: Deleted, extended and alternate scenes Gag reel Real Modern Family moments Before Modern Family Fizbo the Clown The Making of Modern Family: 'Family Portrait' Modern Family 'Hawaii'
If you're reading through reviews on the Amazon product page, you are probably familiar with the riotously funny sitcom Modern Family. The show has been discussed and lauded by more eloquent souls than I, but I would like to comment on the quality of the Blu-Ray, for those interested.
Modern Family was filmed using very high quality cameras in the 16:9 aspect ratio which lends intself perfectly to a Blu-Ray transfer. For a television show, the quality is simply stunning (for comparison's sake, it blows The Office: Season 5 out of the water). Colors are very realistic and buck the trend of over-saturation while still offering plenty of "pop." With few exceptions, detail is crisp and contrast is again excellent. Audio quality and clarity is equally as impressive, although being an ensemble comedy, don't expect much from the rear channels.
The extra features consist of roughly 20-30 minutes (per disc, three discs total) of additional family interviews not aired in the episodes as well as some deleted scenes. I would have liked one or more "making of" type interviews with the cast and crew, but the included extras will suffice. Unfortunately, the quality of the deleted scenes varies wildly between each cut. The video disparity is understandable and does not bother me, but the audio volume changes quite dramatically between one scene and the next, which is a bit annoying.
Despite any negative comments, what's most important about Blu-Ray is being able to enjoy great films and shows (like this one) in the highest quality possible and believe me when I say you will absolutely floored by the pristine picture offered by this transfer. If you enjoy Modern Family, Season 1 on Blu-Ray is a must-have.
Truly one of the funniest shows on TV right now. This "mockumentary" comedy series was created by Christopher Lloyd and Steven Levitan, people behind Frasier and Just Shoot me and is just as funny as these two. Multinational, multisexual and exceedingly complicated (extended) family and their hilarious antics filmed by the Dutch TV crew.
Jay Pritchett (Ed O'Neill - he is back!!!) is the track-suit wearing oldest member of the family who is married to a Columbian goddess Gloria (Sofía Vergara), who brings her son Manny into the family.
Jay's Daughter Claire (Julie Bowen) a neurotic mother is married to Phil (Ty Burrell), a very awkward, know-it-all dad (he is not) and their 3 kids.
Jay's gay son Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and his partner Cameron (Eric Stonestreet), who just adopted a Vietnamese baby.
Show consists of great characters, excellent cast and expertly written scripts. This show is funniest on any network. Start with the pilot, you will love it.
First things first, I think this is the funniest sitcom since Arrested Development, but it also dares to be heartwarming by the end of each episode. Thanks to the laser-piercing sharpness of the writing, it continually gets away with such a potentially fatal combination and has become that all-too-rare show that I schedule my otherwise hectic life around - even if the individual episodes are available on the ABC Web site hours after they air. Created by Christopher Lloyd (Frasier) and Steven Levitan (The Larry Sanders Show), the show offered two-dozen episodes during its premiere season, all of which are included along with several worthy extras in this four-disc set.
The premise is simple and the format quite familiar. It centers on the families of Jay Pritchett, his daughter Claire, and his son Mitchell, all of whom live close to each other in Los Angeles. The format is a sitcom under the guise of a mockumentary (much like Christopher Guest's best films, Waiting for Guffman and Best in Show), which allows all the characters to express their honest opinions about each other, primarily exposing their personal idiosyncrasies and irritants. It's a tried-and-true approach, and in the expert hands of the writers involved, it works beautifully.Read more ›
I never have before bought or even wanted to buy a DVD series of a television show, but this show is so funny and each week, I can't wait to see what's in store for the next upcoming episode. Season 1 is not even through it's airing at this time, but each weekly episode is strong and not one has never left me not laughing into hysterics. What a great cast! I'm so glad ABC signed on for a 2nd season. I've been saving each show on my TiVo (and how long can that last before you need to free up space)and later just love to playback an episode to watch...I'm always guaranteed a good laugh, no matter how many times watched. When this becomes a DVD set, I'm going to be one of the first in line to purchase it! I can't wait for its release!