Modern Family: Season 4, Week 7 — “Arrested”

KIP MOONEY: Well, that was an interesting experiment while it lasted. After spending the first part of the season without Haley, she’s now returning to the Dunphy house, having been kicked out of school.

See, Haley got caught underage drinking, and when she ran and fell on top of a cop, she was charged with resisting arrest and assaulting an officer. It appears the criminal charges will be dropped (or she’ll meet with some kind of probation officer—I’m smelling a love interesting, which could be hilarious or awful), but that didn’t save her from the wrath of the disciplinary board.

But let’s back up. After getting the call that Haley was in jail, Phil and Claire stumble into action to bail out their first-born. They call Mitchell to be on hand as legal counsel, leaving Cam (who’s on a vegan kick) to take care of Alex and Luke. He’s so impressed with his soy “fakin’ bacon,” he gives it to his niece and nephew without telling them its key ingredient. That’s a big problem because Luke is allergic to soy.

All kinds of big “Oops” moments happen after characters assume they can do something, like Haley pretending to be an intern at the hospital, then realizing she’s not ready to see a live birth. Or Jay finally understanding that not going shopping with Gloria can lead her to resent him.

But the grandest moment of the show is the return of Dede (Shelley Long), Jay’s ex-wife. She announces her arrival with the most disgusting “Guess What?” introduction ever. “I have a telescoping uterus,” she says. It’s that lack of tact or decorum that makes me wish she would become a regular. And maybe that she’s partnered up with Manny to do some of his favorite weirdo stuff, it could happen this season.

There were plenty of good moments in this episode, but I can’t help but feel it could have been better as a whole. That’s probably because it’s a little too stuffed. The writers seem committed to making sure every character has something to do, no matter how thinly sketched the story.

My favorite individual scene had to be when Phil turned off his fun-loving nature to go into full-on parent mode, calling out Haley for being an entitled little brat. It was startling but a great moment for a character who lately has gotten a little too silly.

Cam, on his soy bacon: “It’s just like bacon!”
Mitch: “Except for the color, texture and taste.”
Cam: “Well, it’s not even real fake-on, because I make my own. It’s faux fake-on. It’s faux-con.”
Mitch: “It’s faux-con disgusting is what it is.”

Haley: “In Legally Blonde, Elle Woods won her case because she was true to herself and dressed cute.”
Phil: “Haley, this is real life, not an excellent movie.”

Jay: “If you had a husband who liked picking out strollers, you wouldn’t be having a baby.”

Lily: “Haley got arrested.”
Cam: “Lily, what did I say?”
Lily: “That it was only a matter of time.”

About Kip Mooney

Kip Mooney is a recent graduate of UNT's Mayborn School of Journalism and big-time opponent of going to grad school. Working as a freelance writer in the DFW area, he's always ready to go in-depth with his opinions on film, television, music, religion and the sorry state of politics in America. He continues to work independently, as each of his non-college jobs has resulted in the company experiencing serious financial troubles once he leaves, including Blockbuster and the trashy restaurant D's Country Kitchen. (The lesson here is hire him, but don't let him leave.) His literary heroes include Roger Ebert, Donald Miller and Matt Taibbi. Kip has written for The Dallas Morning News and Pegasus News and served as editor-in-chief for the North Texas Daily, but he is perhaps best known as the inspiration for Christian Lander's well-known blog Stuff White People Like.
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