Modern Family: Season 1, Episode 4 “The Incident” (B+)
After mixing and matching members of the three family units last week, they’re brought together almost instantly by the surprise appearance of Dede, the mother of Claire and Mitchell. It’s interesting to see the two starkly different siblings interact, especially because Mitchell is so much more animated and tense than Claire. Hearing Cameron discuss his relationship with Dede was one of the highlights of the episode, while Dede’s outburst at Jay and Gloria’s wedding wasn’t quite as hilarious as it was made out to be, though it was still entertaining. Seeing Gloria become outraged when she saw Dede in the house was great, but not as terrific as Dede’s subsequent non-acceptance of Gloria’s forgiveness. Haley’s boyfriend was a fun plot point whose attempt to diagnose the situation proved surprisingly accurate and not embarrassing. His quite awkward song was well worth it for the end credits sequence of all of the cast members singing a line from his overenthusiastic profession of love for the extremely young Haley. Week-to-week, this show is proving to be reliably funny, and though the past three episodes haven’t matched the absolutely knee-slapping hilariousness of the first episode, it’s remaining steadily solid and immensely watchable. Ed O’Neill had a particularly strong episode where he got to make faces and sardonic comments during his direct-address-to-the-camera sessions, and Sofia Vergara really rocked her scenes in what’s definitely her best role yet.