Modern Family finale react: Miscommunication and missed connections


For six seasons, the ever-popular Modern Family has remained a fan favorite by staying true to its familiar formula: misunderstandings that are lovingly resolved and really witty one-liners. Yes, some of the one-liners can occasionally feel easy or too similar (Gloria doesn’t understand the word in English!), but the majority of them are subtle and delivered so expertly that you truly do laugh out loud throughout each episode (at least I do!).

The season 6 finale, “American Skyper” revolves around Alex’s graduation after-party at Jay and Gloria’s house, and naturally the whole family is there—except for Phil, who is stuck in Seattle. Luckily manny Andy is able to get Phil there via an iPad and a Segway. (“All I had to do was plug him in!” Andy tells the family, introducing Robo-Phil. “It was a lot easier than having to pull the plug on my father at the hospital,” he adds, awkwardly.)

The “conflicts of the week” come from the usual place: miscommunication. Just about everyone is having that problem tonight, but the two big ones are Cam and Mitchell and Haley and Andy.

Turns out Mitchell had gotten fired from his job a month prior, and instead of telling Cam (because he was too embarrassed), he had been pretending to go to work every day in the hopes that he’d quickly find a new job. It turns out the uptight Mitch has been spending his days at the park, with “the other people who are lying to their spouses.” Eventually, he befriends an old unemployed man named Spencer, and bides his time playing checkers with him all day. The irony is, he’s having fun doing it. He even lets Spencer’s cockatoo, George, sit on his shoulder while they play, conquering his “lifetime fear of birds.”

No surprise, Cam is suspicious: Mitch keeps getting texts from someone named “Spencer” and Cam found a receipt for the Avian Hotel in his pocket. He’s convinced Mitchell’s having an affair and eventually confronts him about it, asking about the hotel and his “Spencer” lover.

Mitch explains the hotel is a place where he picked up “George.” Cam gasps about this George fellow, to which Mitch says, “Calm down, it’s just a cockatoo.” Cam gasps: “Oh, one or two, it doesn’t matter?” (Laugh out loud moment—try and fight it, you just can’t help it.) Mitch also confesses about the job, and Cam says it’s no big deal—as long as he’s not cheating on him! See? Lovingly resolved!

But the majority of this episode is focused on the missed connection of Haley and Andy… and unfortunately, it doesn’t get tied up with such a sweet bow on top.

Andy has been the best addition to the show’s regular cast since being introduced in season 4. Since last season’s finale, when we saw him and Haley come thiiiiis close to figuring out they both liked each other, it’s been nearly painful to watch them as platonic buds. This year’s finale should in fact be more Alex-focused, but it just can’t be. The will-they/won’t they romance between Hayley and Andy is too compelling of a story.

Andy finds Robo-Phil and tells him he’s considering proposing to Beth (who turns up at the party and is apparently a little jealous, read: unstable), but that there’s another girl he has a great connection with. Phil tells Andy to just follow his heart and propose to Beth. Andy gets pumped and says he’s going to do it that night at sunset.

But when Robo-dad finally—finally—puts two and two together and realizes Haley likes Andy; and Haley is Andy’s “other girl,” he tries to fix his mistake. “You two love each other!” he shouts. Naturally, his iPad sound stops working right at that moment. They can’t hear him. Phil’s forced to watch this love story fall apart before his very eyes. Out of desperation, he flings his robot body down the stairs to get someone’s attention, but no one notices—except for Gloria’s deadbeat cousin, who promptly picks him up and runs out of the house, stealing him.

The season ends with Andy and Beth leaving, and Haley shutting the door in disappointment. Which means we get an entirely new season of the will-they/won’t-they next year. I don’t know about you all—but I’m ready for new episodes in the fall to see if someone manages to bust up Andy and Beth’s engagement.

(Oh, and in case you’re worried about not seeing more of Alex since she’s heading off to college next season? Don’t. Something tells me that between tech-savvy Phil’s obsession with Facetime and Skype and school holidays, she’ll be as much a part of the Family as she’s always been.)

Until season 7, Pritchett’s and Co. we’ll miss you.