Oh, I’ve been looking for a good euphemism for my favourite curse word – thank you Phil! I learn from you each week. But it wasn’t just helpful cusses you gave me tonight. I should also thank you for teaching me how to stand up for myself, because I was so proud of you tonight and your journey to telling your father-in-law how it is. Phil was right – it’s a fine line between standing up for yourself and respecting your wife’s father. And this issue has been brewing for a while. But Phil handled things with grace. True to Modern Family style, what mattered wasn’t winning the game – because those misfit kids weren’t going to get to that level of skill any time this season – but what mattered was the relational shift and development that happened in the familial relations. From now on, Jay will respect his son-in-law just a little more, we hope, and Phil won’t feel so disenfranchised by Claire’s dad.
The parallel to this narrative was of course the heat that then brewed between Claire and Gloria over which treats to purchase for Lilly. Their interaction revealed something interesting about family dynamics. It’s not necessarily the parental figures who hold the power in a family structure but, when remarriage of those parentals comes into the picture, it’s those who’ve been in the family longer who hold sway. Just as Phil has to deal with Jay’s control issues, Gloria has to deal with Claire. But the ladies managed to understand each others needs much faster than the boys in a way that I hope will open up future possibilities for their own relating.
But my favourite part of tonight’s episode was Charlie Bingham! So I’ve been sick for the past week or so, and as I’ve been recuping, I’ve hunkered down on my couch and worked my way through seasons 4 and 5 of Weeds…so I came into tonight’s episode having Justin Kirk (aka Andy Botwin) hot on my radar and much beloved. What fun to get this crossover! He was a lovely character in an even lovelier house! But what I really loved about Charlie was how many chances he had to be a dick and how dickishly we expected him to act, and how he never did. We didn’t get the easy quips when Cam continually embarrassed himself. He didn’t irrationally take the job back from Mitchell when they accidentally wrecked his car. In fact, he was a human; a normal human nice guy with a bit of an interesting edge. I’m sure hoping he sticks around!
Best lines – Cam’s, “I have cargo pants and I don’t work at the docks” had me picturing him in a sweet little sailor suit! And the idea that Phil went to trapeze school rocked my world! So he was a cheerleader and an acrobat! Please please show us some of those moves!! I love that Jay told Phil he loved him when it seemed that’s what Phil wanted, and I love that it wasn’t what Phil wanted. And who hasn’t, like Mitchell, fantasized about killing Dora by filling her backpack with bricks and throwing her into candy-cane river? I don’t even have kids, but I know I can’t stand that little girl just from over-exposure to her through my friends’ children. And finally, as is often the case, Phil took my favourite line with: “Give a kid a bird, and he becomes one of those weird guys who walks around with a bird on his shoulder. Give him wings and he’ll fly…unless he has no hand-eye coordination.” Priceless!
So Moth Chase friends, what were your favourite lines? How did you like Charlie’s character? Do you, like me, now desperately want a wooden car turntable in your driveway? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!
Posted by Natalie