Have You Noticed That 'Modern Family' Is Oblivious To the Recession?
by Allison Waldman, posted Apr 28th 2010 10:07AM
There's so much to like about ABC's award-winning new sitcom 'Modern Family' that it seems almost curmudgeon-like to complain. Nevertheless, you have to wonder where in the world 'Modern Family' is located. No, not the place; it's clearly Southern California. No, it's the economy. 'Modern Family' resides in an economy unaffected by the recession. Everybody is doing well. Nobody's worried about paying the mortgage, or – God forbid – facing foreclosure. Things are going so well in 'Modern Family' world that the entire clan is heading to Hawaii for a family vacation.
Wow, remember when your family could afford to fly off for a holiday? It was probably some time around the turn of the century ... 2000. Maybe 'Modern Family' is in a time warp because they're all checking into the Four Seasons Maui. It'll be the May 12 season finale, so tune in if you want to live vicariously.
If you take a closer look, you'll find glaring examples of how out of touch the families on 'Modern Family' are to the worldwide economic downturn. Phil Dunphy, for instance, works as a realtor. Anyone who knows anything about the current housing market will tell you that real estate brokers are making a fraction of the income they made in the past.
The depreciated value of homes has caused realtors to turn to other professions. However, Phil has displayed no downturn in his market. If anything, the Dunphys are really well off. When the iPad was released in early April, Claire went out to buy it for Phil without even questioning the price.
Jay and Gloria are doing even better than Phil and Claire. They've never explained exactly what Jay does for a living, other than to suggest that he's a boss and he's very successful. Gloria shops in the nicest boutiques – with Claire – and their home is beautifully appointed. The recession has many families clipping coupons and cutting back on expenses, but not on 'Modern Family.'
Then there's Cam and Mitchell. Up until a few episodes ago, Mitchell was a hard-working corporate attorney. But when the hours he had to log became too much because Mitchell was missing out on all the changes in daughter Lily's life, he simply quit his job. Mitchell didn't think it over; he actually acted hastily and without serious consideration for his family. Cam had been a stay-at-home parent, contributing nothing to the family income.
And, presumably, the medical coverage for Cam and Lily was courtesy of Mitchell's benefits – or at least he paid for their coverage out of his pocket. When he quit, not only was Mitchell cutting off the family income, he was putting them in jeopardy.
Now, since then, Cam tried to get a job in the real world and was working in a card shop for $10 an hour. He hated it and was grateful when Mitchell managed to land another job so he could return to being Lily's caretaker.
However, even before he starts that job, everyone is heading to Hawaii for this family get together. How great would it be to live the life of the Dunphys and the Pritchetts! That's the 'Modern Family' life I'd like to be living.
[Check out episodes of 'Modern Family' on SlashControl.]