Interestingly enough, one of the first things my mother said to me when I got home for Easter break was, “oh my god sweetie, are you ready for the ‘Modern Family’ finale tonight? You know it’s been 11 seasons, don’t you?” As weird as I thought it was to be greeted with this, I actually was aware of the upcoming end to the well-known sitcom. “Modern Family,” has, for 11 years now, been one of those shows where you can throw any episode on and jump right back into the countless storylines. I won’t lie- I’ve always favored Haley, as people rarely spell our name correctly. It’s easy to follow, funny and lighthearted, all while tackling real-life family moments that can sometimes feel like new territory. Over the years, the show has served as a platform to portray interracial and homosexual relationships, adoption and unexpected pregnancy. The finale gave fans a nice sense of closure for each character’s storyline. *Spoiler warning: we’ll be discussing the finale below!*
Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) and Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) had just decided to adopt another child, a boy this time, named Rex. When it looked like things were quieting down, Cameron was offered the head coaching position for the football program at the University of North Central Missouri. It was a big decision, but the family decided to follow the career opportunity and go to Missouri, moving out of their newly furnished apartment.
Jay (Ed O’Neill) revealed to Gloria (Sofia Vergara) that he had been learning Spanish, so that he could accompany her to Colombia for the summer. She wanted to see her family and had been worried about her children growing up, so this was just the surprise she needed. Manny (Rico Rodriquez) decided he was going to travel the world for a year, which was a big moment in his character’s search for independence.
Phil (Ty Burrell) and Claire (Julie Bowen) had been living in an RV in the front of their house and finally became fed up with the state of their home. They told their children that at least one of them had to move out, and fans were surprised to learn that all three kids decided it was time to move on. Haley (Sarah Hyland) moved into Cameron and Mitchell’s old apartment with Dylan (Reid Ewing) and their twins. Alex (Ariel Winter) was going to move to Switzerland with Haley’s ex-boyfriend, Arvin (Chris Geere), to pursue a new research career. They shared a kiss and it looked like the two would possibly be starting a relationship in their future. Luke (Nolan Gould) left the show heading to the University of Oregon to finally give college a chance. Phil and Claire finally decided to take a road trip across the country, while leaving the porch light on of course.
This show has consistently proved to be a platform that uses its reach to spread positive and healthy ways of communicating with family and dealing with problems. The show featured a gay couple for all 11 seasons, but there was a heartwarming nod to the couple in the finale. Jay made a comment about “both of his sons leaving,” regarding Cameron and Mitchell, showing that he was always accepting of the relationship and will always be accepting of it in the future. Gloria and Jay are another couple that showcase cultural differences, bringing people together and educating one another on new parts of the world. Another, sometimes difficult, situation to navigate can be unexpected pregnancies. Haley’s character arc allowed fans to see a young mother, young father and a set of parents handling the news. This can be a difficult and scary situation for families to approach, but by showcasing this on such a popular sitcom it can show families how to better handle it. The show can be a learning experience for viewers everywhere or it can make some feel that they are not alone in what they’re going through. A noteworthy moment in the finale was Luke and Manny sharing a tearful hug goodbye. In a male-dominated society, it can be intimidating for men and boys to connect with their emotions. Showing two boys crying and acknowledging the importance of their friendship is an inspiring moment for boys and young men everywhere.
Overall, “Modern Family” has been a staple sitcom for the past 11 years and fans are sad to see it go. But, the finale provided closure on each character, while still leaving their futures a bit up to the imagination of fans.
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