‘Modern Family’ Season 3 Review: Not as Good as the First or Second, But Still Great

Photo Credit: http://modernfamilyseason3epi24.squarespace.com/

The third season of ABC’s hit comedy was a much rockier road than we got with the first two seasons. But in the end, Modern Family is still one of the best comedies on television, just no long the best.

If you look at the episode lists of seasons one and two of this show just about every episode is a classic. This season has a handful of classics, but a lot of episodes felt like the writers were going through the motions. That would be less of an issue if this was say season five or six but this was only the third! Based on this fact the future for Modern Family does not look as bright as it should.

But even when this show seems to be going through the motions there are still a lot of funny moments. There is really only one episode from this season that I would say isn’t at least “good”. But more on that later.

Looking back on the two part season premiere, those two episodes perfectly capture how I feel about this season. Dude Ranch was a weird way to start off the season. Again, getaways like this are usually saved for a later season, but here we are the first episode of season three on a vacation. While this was a bad sign to begin with, the episode was still good (I rewarded it an 8). That and the second episode, When Good Kids Go Bad was an instant classic and one of the best episodes of the season.

Following the premiere, we got a string of episodes that were consistently solid but didn’t stand out as well as they should have. A lot of them felt like they were trying to cram way too much into each half hour. That means that each of the four, and even sometimes five, plots in a single episode would never be fully realized.

The first great episode after the premiere was Punkin Chunkin, a Thanksgiving special of sorts that had some wonderful moments. But after that the string of solid but not great episodes would continue until we got the best episode of the season, Little Bo Bleep. You might remember some controversy surrounding this episode as it involved such a little girl yelling profanities. This episode was great because it utilized the new Lily more than any other.

Shortly after we got another great episode with Aunt Mommy, and again with Leap Day. After that, however, we got four episodes in a row that were pretty boring. But then we got another classic with Disneyland. This proves how inconsistent the second half of the season was. While there were more classics than the first half, the episodes between them were surprisingly weak.

The last two of the season, much like the first two, said it all. The second to last, Tableua Vivant was easily the worst episode of the season. But then last night’s finale, Baby on Board was shocking and saw plot progression, making it one of the best of the season. The finale gives me hope that season four can bring us back to the quality of the first two seasons.

Overall, however, season three was a dip in quality where many other great shows such as The Office and Parks and Recreation saw their strongest seasons. This does not bode well for the future but maybe their sophomore slump came a year late and next year will be great again.

With the first half of the season being consistently solid but not great, and the second half being harshly uneven with classics being broken up by uninspired episodes, season three has to be seen as rocky. I would like to say that a bad episode of Modern Family is still better than everything else on television, but the end of the season proved me wrong. We shall see what the future holds. (8.5/10)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *