My least favorite Modern Family episodes are the ones that reveal just how awful the Dunphy-Pritchett-Delgado adults are deep down -- and that was the running gag in "Games People Play." Not to mention that the pattern this season has been that for every tiny step Lily has taken to improve, Manny just gets that much worse. Making him a whiny sneak with an unsubtle Oedipal problem did not do him any favors. While we've seen Jay and Gloria realize how obnoxious they are, with Phil and Cam accidentally (and unbeknownst to them) publicly shaming themselves and Claire functioning as a wet blanket, this episode wasn't a complete waste. There were still some pretty funny moments, so let's focus on those:
"I said no. Get it out of my house."
I love the callback to Phil's alpaca from "After the Fire", and that he also named her Jolene. The whole Dunphy plot was cute, especially considering that I've always enjoyed a good family RV-trip plotline since "The Call of the Simpsons."
"I'm just saying she's five." "And you'll never let her forget it."
Mitch and Cam did manage to get a few great moments in their predictable scenes, and I'll give it up to Lily for some decent acting.
"Turn it up, handsome."
Luke never fails to make me smile when he's addressing his father as "handsome." Otherwise -- though it was also coming from a mile away -- it was fun to hear "Morning Mood," and then watch the blissful trip begin to unravel.
"But Pepper loves me."
If nothing else positive came from the game night subplot, at least we got some great line delivery from Ed O'Neill. I also enjoyed the delivery guy saying, "Any slower and she'd be U.S. Mail, am I right? That's gonna kill at the warehouse."
"Dad's in the middle of a super-sad dude hug."
Modern Family clearly needs to give Phil new friends next season -- and I don't mean the kind like Kevin Hart, where they show up once and never return (despite living next door). Actual friends. Ones who consider suicide at Bryce Canyon National Park.
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