A Modern Family

The sitcom Modern Family inspires and intrigues me because of how culturally advanced it is in terms of relationships. Specifically within the relationships of the show, there is a gay couple who have adopted a child, there is an older man who remarries a younger woman and becomes the stepfather to her child and they become a blended family, and there is a nuclear white middle-class family with three siblings that represent the broad spectrum of behavior in teenagers. All of these relationships exist within our society and I find it intriguing that they can be blended together to form a sitcom that appeals to the masses.

The diverse dynamics of each relationship throughout the show draw attention to current issues such as gay marriage, adoption, divorce and remarrying, Stepparenting, living with siblings and the rollercoaster of tensions within dynamics families like the ones seen in Modern Family. Considering all of the complex family dynamics, these controversial (to some) relationships are brought to light by the immense and humor packed dialogue and monologue of its characters. Just as its sitcom title suggests, Modern Family attempts and successfully creates a modern sitcom that is relatable on all spectrums of relationships. The viewer is subjected to an inside view of a modern family and its own dynamics and the modern family includes all members: a grandfather, husband and wife, wife and her second husband, two uncles, grandchildren and cousins.

This witty sitcom allows viewers to experience a truly modern family and to watch the way its characters interact with each other and evolve in their own relationships. The highs and lows are leveled out with clever humor, good intentions and acceptance for all types of relationships among human beings.

Modern Family depicts Modern Families

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Meghan Murphy

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10 Responses to A Modern Family

  1. mediaphiles says:

    I also agree that Modern Family encourages acceptance for all types of families and relationships. I think it is important for our society to have television content in which common family dynamics are challenged and new ones are introduced! -Kelsey Sierra

  2. mediaphiles says:

    I’ve always thought it was so crazy how they seemed to hit just about every single “thing” that I family could have in this show. Whether its the gay couple, the step-mother, the adopted kids, the college-dropout, or the nerdy normal kid – Modern Family has it all. Another show I have found to have this same kind of all encompassing feel is the show Parenthood. Just like Modern Family, it attempts to depict a “normal American family of today” while encompassing just about every family dynamic there is. I think that Parenthood actually may even encompass more situations that does Modern Family. It is a drama though, which maybe allows it just a little more time to develop. After seeing these two shows and the many other that follow suit in encompassing all dynamics, it makes me wonder how much the networks push their writers to develop these families. Is it necessary to have a gay couple, a latino, a single parent – or is it just good “advertising”? Don’t get me wrong, I obviously appreciate the existence of these characters and these dynamics on primetime television, but it just makes me wonder whether there is some “unsaid quota” or something going on.
    -Nicolette McCann

    • mediaphiles says:

      This is a really important point to bring up. I do think things can get a bit tricky when trying to include a number of different “checked boxes” as characters into a television show. For example, Sofia Vergara can be seen as representing Latina women on a majorly popular TV series, but how much is her character playing into the sensual/exotic stereotype that is placed upon real life Latina women? I’ve only seen a few episodes, so I can’t say that the show never combats this. But it is important to think about typecasting in situations like this. -Kristina Kokkonos

    • marymdalton says:

      Interesting comparison between Modern Family (sitcom) and Parenthood (drama), but I see the structural similarities.

  3. mediaphiles says:

    I love how you mentioned the title of the sitcom being modern family. That is so important because it is truly the modernization of different types of families. The show does not treat each family as a separate entity, but connects them all to each other. This is enlightening because viewers are able to see how different types of family members interact with other family members from other backgrounds.

    -Shelby Halliman

  4. mediaphiles says:

    I completely agree. Modern Family is a show all members of my family watched regularly when it first came out. It is extremely popular with the masses and has even won several awards and recognitions. On a surface level, there is not one aspect of the show that I feel my personal family can relate to but the cool thing is their situations, dilemmas and family dynamic in general is very relatable and extremely hilarious.
    -Kendall Fischlein

  5. mediaphiles says:

    What I enjoy about Modern Family is that it defies the stereotypical family time and time again and while it is comedic, it discusses issues that are serious. -Ally

  6. mediaphiles says:

    I completely agree! I think Modern Family truly shows how there really is no such thing as a “nuclear family”. Each family is different and each family has their problems to overcome. If you think about it, from an outsider’s perspective the entire family dynamic of Jay and his two adult children and each of their families seems so bizarre and off-beat but when you sit down and watch the show it is incredibly relatable. -Sam Moore

  7. mediaphiles says:

    Modern Family’s diverse cast is golden and I think the show’s success has a lot to do with the large variety of storylines each member/family can experience. The family’s dynamic can seem so jumbled but you can never really make sense of family unless you’re a part of it…and even then it may not make sense. I think the parts that I can relate to (having an older sister, getting annoyed at parents) are what makes the show so funny and entertaining.
    – Ziba

  8. mediaphiles says:

    I appreciate the presentation of the gay couple in modern family, however it’s steeped with stereotypes. The two men are both extremely feminine, caricatured gay men. It would have been nice to see a wider variety of personalities in the gay characters. Not all gay men are feminine and white! – Karly Morgan

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