Forget whether it's a good representation of teh gays, or a decent comedy. Just tell me who the fuck they're supposed to be talking to when they talk to the camera a la shows like The Office which have the conceit of a documentary crew following them around.
The problem is that no documentary crew is ever seen or referred to on Modern Family; we've seen the characters in bed, and fighting, and doing tons of things you'd never do if you knew there was a camera present, yet there are these cutaways where they are talking directly to the audience as if they are being interviewed.
The conceit itself is rather tired now that it's done so often, but on Modern Family, it doesn't even make sense.
Or am I missing something?
It's the big flaw in the show that has never been addressed. It's a lazy device that allows the writers all sorts of liberties. Without the broken fourth wall they'd have to actually have to come up with more creative solutions to their narrative problems.
They do it on Parks and Rec too. That's a much better show but it's still such a lazy device.
A Dutch film crew is following the Modern Family families for a documentary on a regular American family.
Not sure what the excuse is on Parks & Rec though.
What I don't get is how they can call the show "Modern Family" and still have the mom be a stay at home mom, like some 50's hausfrau, and commend her when she finally gets off her lazy ass and tries to do something, but fails miserably.
its being transmitted to Omicron Persei 8. supposedly as a reality show about earthlings.
The show with Cam versus the lesbians was hilarious.
Marry me r6.
It was established during Season 1 that a German filmmaker is making a documentary on the Pritchetts, a seemingly typical, upper-middleclass family whose world is instantly transformed when the father and his only son are arrested and charged with shocking and horrible crimes.
what bugs me (i actually love the show), is the strange quite voice over when scenes shift --"duffy's living room" or "cam's bedroom". what the hell is that. its very distracting.
[quote]what bugs me (i actually love the show), is the strange quite voice over when scenes shift --"duffy's living room" or "cam's bedroom". what the hell is that. its very distracting.
I'm sorry, what?
Also, OP, you must lead an empty life if this alternate form of sitcom storytelling truly upsets you this much.
r10, are you on medication? There is NO "transition voice" or ANY voice of any kind that says that shit. Unless it is, of course, the voices in your head.
Thanks R10. I thought it was just me hearing that strange voice over announcing what room they are going to next. I find it very helpful to understand the plot.
What [R10} is referring to is probably the Audio Descriptive Track. Recently mandated by the FCC, this separate audio track (often replacing the second language SAP track) is used to describe the on-screen action for blind "viewers" of programming. Check "Audio Description" on Wikipedia for more info.
However, it can be head-scratching the first time you experience it. :)
R10 is too old to know how to work his TV.
They're supposed to be on a reality show/documentary like the people on The Office and Parks and Recs. What I don't understand is how they can so freely badmouth people and not get shit for it when the show airs.
On the reunions shows for all the Real Housewives shows, people always call out everyone for what they say in the confessionals. On The Office, they are always making fun of their boss and co-workers in the confessionals. How is that going to fly at the reunion??
Plus if all their shows have been on for several seasons, it should mean that they are famous now but none of them act like they are famous.
The "modern" part is supposed to be the mix of family types within their broader family -- regular nuclear family, older man-younger woman from another country, gay couple with kid.
It is strangely retro though that all three couples have one partner who doesn't work.
Who cares? I just watch, laugh my ass off and forget about it til the next episode. I can't be doing with nit pickers who deconstruct comedy shows to try to make you feel stupid for enjoying a half hour of laughs.
Sit coms aren't meant to be 'normal'. Jeezo.
I'm with r19. Chill out, OP. If it bothers you so much, just don't watch the show.
If you think about it, it's pretty bold for the show to basically rape the Reality TV concept and dismiss anything that could get in their way for a punchline or their creative vision to create a comedy drama series.
OP = master of the obvious and trivial, from the year 2009
I think this show is so overrated. It is very pretentious and although it has some funny moments, I just don't get it or all the awards it has garnered. I guess talking t the audience (if that is the gimmick) is supposed to make it original or something.
The conceit is that the audience is IN on the joke. There are often asides to the camera, even if it's not the sit down interviews throughout the show.
It's like the family members each are recounting a slice of life to someone.
Not that complicated.
R23, what's overrated is your opinion and anyone who uses that term as if there's some objective standard by which something is "overrated".
What you mean is, it's not your taste, therefore, by your standard, everyone else must be wrong.
If significant numbers of people like it, it is very likely because they actually enjoy it, therefore, it's not "overrated" to them.
Such a fucking snob.
R23 isn't so much a snob as he is unsophisticated. Some people just need to be told when to laugh at a sitcom and get nervous without a laugh track.
There are enough of these shows on the air now that I no longer think about the alleged documentaries that are being made. I just look at it as a new format of sitcom. In fact, I don't see any reason why they even have to have the documentary conceit anymore. Just have the characters break the third wall and talk to the audience.
I liked this show better when it was called "Soap."
R11 R12 sorry it took so long for me to reply... i was out chopping wood for my steam powered TV. your cogent comments really moved the discussion forward. yes, i'm so old i only had a stick to make moving shadows with (rich kids had TWO sticks and fire, so they could watch moving shadows at night). MF is the only show i have ever heard stage directions voiced -- unless you count Snagglepuss: "Exit, stage right! if this is to help blind "viewers, why is this the only program i've ever heard it on?
[quote]The show with Cam versus the lesbians was hilarious.
I just watch this episode on Hulu last night and the back and forth insults between Cam and the blonde lesbian were hysterical - I always want to stop watching this show, but I never do because scenes like that end up pulling me back in.
Yeah, R27? It's the "fourth" wall, hon. The fourth wall is the one facing us, the audience. If they were talking to the third wall, we'd just see them in profile talking to a wall all the time.
The gays on this show give me secondhand embarrassment. And Ferguson gives me secondhand embarrassment in real life too.
The season finale was hyserical too, with Cam causing all kinds of trouble with the old Jewish ladies and then later wondering why trouble always seems to pop up around him!
R6 I think its just a summer replacement for "Single Female Lawyer".
Word is that the cast members are totally obnoxious assholes in real life.
Agreed, OP. The talking-to-the-camera conceit is tiresome. I could never get into THE OFFICE, PARKS & RECREATION, and MODERN FAMILY because of it.
"Modern Family" is a class-blind fantasy world. (See link.)
It's just a trope. Do you have a problem with the studio audience laughing at the zany antics of the cast on a three-camera sitcom? "Who are these people? Why are they in her living room/his office? Why don't the characters hear all that laughter?"
That trope makes just as much sense as the talking-to-the-camera one, which is to say none.
It's all just TV, and it all exists purely to sell you stuff. Just go with it, or chuck it and pick up a book instead.
OP, as someone said, just stop watching the show instead of bitching about it.
Love Modern Family. It's a terrific show. The episode with Manny and Jay in line at city hall the day gay marriages start was hilarious.
And Claire has a job now.
Is any of this "4th wall" business similar to what George Burns used to do on his TV series many moons ago? I think "The Goldbergs" did it as well.