Brace yourself for some earthshaking comedy in season 2: Our gang will be rocked by a minor quake! ”It sends Manny [Rico Rodriguez] into an existential crisis that Jay [Ed O’Neill] has to help him with,” says coexec producer Dan O’Shannon, ”but Jay has some questions of his own.” In that same episode, Nathan Lane guest-stars as Pepper, a flamboyant friend of Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) and Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson). ”Pepper is known for throwing fancifully themed brunches that require the guests to dress in costumes,” says O’Shannon.
The charming 12-year-old, who plays Manny on ABC’s hit comedy Modern Family, gets some of the show’s biggest laughs with his wise-beyond-his-years line readings. Turns out the kid’s got a gift for sound bites in real life, too.
On his fan base Mostly the adults recognize me. Some of the kids have to be told, ”He’s from Modern Family!” ”Oh…that dude. Mom, can I get ice cream now?”
It may be the dog days of summer, but television is already looking to the fall. At the Television Critics Association press tour in Los Angeles last week, the major networks gathered to trot out their new programs and dish about returning ones. Translation: all the spoilers, hints, and previews you could want about the shows you love.
This isn’t the tropical getaway that Sofia Vergara had in mind. She and her costars of Modern Family — the season’s most-watched new comedy — are in Maui filming a pivotal May episode, and Vergara is required to step out of a hotel pool wearing a one-piece sheath with a sexy low back. Unfortunately, the director and the grips aren’t the only ones watching her — all sorts of creeps are leaning out of hotel windows, desperate to take her photo.
MOVIESClash of the Titans Soars, But Is It Good for 3-D? On April 9, DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg lambasted Warner Bros. for its last-minute conversion of Clash of the Titans to 3-D. His issue: The ”cheeseball” switch cheapens the high-quality experience of films like Avatar and DreamWorks’ How to Train Your Dragon. Said Katzenberg to Variety: ”It literally is ‘Okay, congratulations! You just snookered the movie audience.”’
1. Best Baby-Based Story Line The gay dads adopt Lily on Modern Family
Worst Baby-Based Story Line Terri’s fake pregnancy on Glee
2. The Biggest Anticlimactic ”We Waited a Year for This?” AwardProject Runway
No. 9 - New kids on the block
For the past few years, it seemed like the family sitcom was dead…or at least saying a slow, painful goodbye (farewell, ‘Til Death!). But ABC’s Modern Family brought a beating heart back to the genre — heart being the operative word. Acclaimed sitcoms like 30 Rock and The Office bring the funny but also a healthy dose of cynicism. Family, which follows three interconnected clans, brims with warm humor.
MODERN FAMILYWhere can I find Cam and Mitchell’s signature mugs?— Bryony The Modern couple Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) and Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) clock in couch time with ”Great Moustaches” (shakespeares den.com; $10) and ”I Love Me” mugs (cafepress.com; $15).
Modern Family is immediately recognizable as the best new sitcom of the fall in part because it’s not recognizable as any other sort of sitcom. It may have the faux-documentary framework of The Office; it may have faces familiar from other comedies (Ed O’Neill from Married…With Children, Julie Bowen from Ed), but Modern Family is unique in the way it juggles so many players so deftly and makes every member of the cast a vivid, complex character. Oh, and it’s really funny, too.
The weather couldn’t be more miserable. Rain and wind are whipping umbrellas inside out all over the Century City lot. But on one soundstage, where Modern Family tapes, the mood is all sunshine and rainbows: This is the happy land where ABC is saving the family sitcom.
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