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Monday, May 16, 2011

About: Modern Family "Good Cop, Bad Dog"

 “You are not a good bad cop and I am a very bad good cop.”

No truer words were ever spoken.  

Like the other couples on the show, Phil and Claire’s relationship works so well because they are polar opposites; Claire being the crazy, controlling mom who is really just trying to keep the peace and keep it together and Phil being the laid back, goofy dad that would rather just be one of the kids. If you've seen a single episode of Modern Family then this is no surprise to you. But this somewhat stereotypical family dynamic works surprisingly well week to week because of the chemistry between Burrell and Bowen. There is something about the two of them that really works. So when their roles were flip-flopped I knew we were in for a treat.

Good cop Claire was a fish out of water, as expected. It was entertaining watching her try way to hard to be fun. You really shouldn't have to try. But Phil as the bad cop was easily the most entertaining part of the episode. It all started out as expected, being the naïve and trusting father that he is, he assumed that Alex and Haley did their chores just because he asked. Oh Phil, when will you learn? But then came the moment he snapped “Sweet and sour chicken!” But he didn’t stop there. The “chase scene” was equally entertaining as he leapt onto the hood of the car, “You poked the bear girls! You poked him!”

While Claire was forcing fast food binges on the boys, Phil was depriving he girls of food altogether. “Dad, we haven’t eaten lunch yet.” “Neither have half the kids in Africa, stop yapping and get back to work.” The best part of that line was the spot on delivery coupled with the laptop and the duct tape. So good. 

Of course, Phil and Claire learn to stick to their roles and do what they do best. We all knew how it would end. It was entirely about the journey.

“I’m nice, so I put on the sugar jacket!”

The Jay and Gloria story left something to be desired. I don't know if it was the story itself or the Guillermo character that turned me off. I love Jay and Gloria. They are one of my top three favorite couples in the show. Like how I did that? But I couldn't have been less interested in the good doggy treat/bad doggy treat schpeel.

So rather than beating it into the ground I'll just move on. I did enjoy the fact that Jay couldn't give up the dog. I'll be interested to see if that dog is a new source of conflict in the Pritchett household. Also, did anyone notice that Jay and the dog are total bowsers? If you don't know what I'm talking about, it's a term coined in the movie I Love You, Man. It's a word used to describe pets and owners who look oddly related.

“Ok, how are you still standing? You drank enough of that cough syrup to put down a grizzly.”
“I’ll tell you what’s grizzly, and that is your behavior”

I loved this whole plot. First of all, I love that Mitchell thinks that Lady Gaga is the "one gay cliche" he allows himself. It was nice to see Mitchell stand out on his own this week too. Cam usually takes the spotlight in their story lines with Mitchell in the corner rolling his eyes and mumbling witty comments. It was nice to see a bit of a role reversal in that respect. There is no doubt that Mitchell is hilarious. Cam couldn't be as funny as he is without Mitchell there to remind us just how outrageous and flamboyant Cam really is.

What really worked about this plot for me was how hilariously selfish Mitchell was being. The flashbacks of Cam carrying a sick Mitchell around the house like a baby made that pretty clear. I actually wonder what would have happened if Mitchell just asked Cam if he could go to the concert? My guess is that there would have been some pouting and maybe even a few passive aggressive comments but then I think everything would have been fine.

Although if that had happened, we would have missed out on Mitchell's hilarious Lady Gaga dance and the aforementioned "grizzly behavior".

Overall I was very pleased with Good Cop, Bad Dog. It wasn't an all around slam dunk but two out of three isn't bad at all.

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