Modern Family Goodnight Gracie
May 22, 2013
If this had been any regular episode, it would have been really good. However, as a season finale, I really felt that it came up short. It felt anti-climactic and (unlike most season finales) I didn’t feel like it was building to much for the next season. At the same time, it didn’t feel like a series finale either, so I assume that we’ll get more Modern Family, come fall.
The family has gone to Florida to attend a memorial service for Phil’s mother, who recently died. As Claire explains it t wasn’t unexpected and Phil was there when she passed, so he got to say goodbye. Overall, it’s a very peaceful passing. When they arrive, his father is at peace, and she’s been cremated and is ready to be put to rest.
Phil’s father gives his son a box, of things that his mother left for him and the kids. Inside is a note, where she asks Phil to set up his father with a nice neighbor down the street, although she admits to not knowing her very well. Phil thinks it’s crazy, and wants to let his dad pick his own girlfriend, but Claire is determined that they respect his mother’s wishes and do what they can to make the match happen. She even tricks Phil into going to the woman’s house, on the excuse of going for a walk together. When a man answers the door with her, they immediately assume that she already has a boyfriend – or is married – and make up a phony excuse about being vacuum salespeople.
The letter from his mother warned Phil that she wanted him to set up his father because the neighborhood ladies would swoop down on him the moment they smelled fresh meat of a single man. After discovering the woman and her man, Phil and Claire go home to find just that – lots of neighborhood women flitting about the kitchen, trying to get his father’s attention. Phil also learns that the man was the neighbor-lady’s brother, not her boyfriend. So he goes back to talk to her again and explains the situation to her. She is confused, but gives him a hug and he agrees with his mother: She is very nice.
Cam doesn’t really do much. He plays Mahjong with some retired women. Mitch, however, has a bigger adventure. Apparently Gloria has a bench warrant out for her in Florida, because she once lived there and her roommate used the apartment for a small-time prostitution ring, after Gloria moved out but before she was off the least. Figuring that it should be no problem, Mitch (who I just learned tonight is a lawyer) goes to court with her, to help her out. They’re low on the docket, however, and Gloria asks him to help some of the other defendants, to make things go more quickly. Instead, it makes things go much more slowly, since he has to get a feeling for each case and make a real argument as to the defendant’s innocence.
After this goes on for…a while…it’s finally turn for Gloria’s case. The judge is so tired of listening to him that she just dismisses the case, letting Gloria go. That night at the memorial, Mitch tells Cam that he wants to quit his job (something corporate, I assume?) and go back into the courtroom. Mitch doesn’t seem too bothered by the fact, but I think he was still distracted by his Mahjong ladies and perhaps didn’t hear him properly.
Finally, we have Alex. Haley and Luke were both very satisfied by the gifts left to them by their grandmother (jewelry and a pocket watch, respectively). Alex, however, got a lighter with a note saying simply “This is a lighter.” Since she was certain that she was very close to her grandmother, Alex is naturally baffled by this fact. After worrying about it for a while, her grandfather points out that the letter opens. We learn that the lighter originally belonged to a celebrity that she admired. He left it at a restaurant where she was waitressing, and she decided to keep it instead. A customer saw her but promised to keep her secret…and that customer ended up being her husband.
As the episode ends, Alex lights up some fireworks and sits back as they celebrate the life of Grace Dunphy.