Modern Family: Season 1, Episode 6 “Run For Your Wife” (B+)
Despite the fact that the first day of school seems a bit ill-timed since Manny and Luke got into a fight at school just last episode, it’s still a fun theme for the episode which charges two of the main stories of the episode. Jay’s less-than-enthusiastic comments about Manny’s poncho were funny, but were topped by Gloria’s decision to encourage Jay to break his musical instrument so that the ensemble wasn’t too over-the-top. Claire’s need to stay home and take a day to herself just sitting around and reading made for great over-enthusiasm and intrusiveness on the part of Phil, whose categorization by Claire as her “other child” is spot-on. Their race is mildly amusing, and Claire’s decision to let him win because it will mean something to him adds a nice dramatic touch to the episode. The snippets of Haley’s driver’s ed fiascos were pretty hilarious, and while I wouldn’t have minded seeing an entire episode devoted to those mishaps, the moments selected were pretty brilliant. Mitchell and Cameron’s concerned visit to the doctor is a touch over-the-top, but that’s what makes them so entertaining. The funniest part is most definitely Cameron’s eagerness to connect with the Asian doctor and insinuate that she has a connection to Lily, while the doctor continued to insist that she was born in Denver. With Cameron’s quiet racial insinuations and Jay’s terribly unsubtle outright racism, this show knows exactly how much to push the boundaries of acceptability and produce hilarious material.