Fears (Modern Family)

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"Fears"
Modern Family episode
Fears (Modern Family).jpg
Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) when they realize why Lily says "mommy"
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 16
Directed by Reggie Hudlin
Written by Steven Levitan
Production code 1ARG18
Original air date March 3, 2010[1]
Guest actors
Season 1 episodes
Episode chronology
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"My Funky Valentine"
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"Truth Be Told"

"Fears" is the 16th episode of the first season of Modern Family and the 16th episode of the series overall. It was written by co-creator, Steven Levitan and directed by Reggie Hudlin. The episode was aired March 3, 2010 and achieved a Nielsen Rating of 3.5/9 and 8.08 million viewers. The episode got positive reviews from critics.

Plot[edit]

This episode begins with the kids being interviewed as to their fears, a theme which runs through the three family plotlines.

After a cable guy tells Haley (Sarah Hyland) "that's a great collection you've got down there", Phil (Ty Burrell) and Luke (Nolan Gould) think the cable guy is talking about something else and decide to go under the house. Phil gives up, because of his fear of the dark so they send Luke's car with a camera attached on it to search the area. Unfortunately, the car crashes and gets stuck making Luke upset. Luke decides to go under, but gets his belt loop stuck on something. Phil breaks his fear of dark to save Luke and get the car. The two then decide to go farther but their discovery of some human bones rushed them out of there. They call the police just to realize the bones are Halloween decorations from the old owner.

Haley is trying to get her driver's license for the third time and if she fails she has to wait six months to try again. Claire (Julie Bowen) tries to motivate her, but Haley becomes more nervous when she gets the same examiner. Claire also tries to motivate Alex (Ariel Winter) to go to a dance, because Alex thinks no one will ask her. Claire convinces her to go and that someone will ask her to dance. Haley finally gets her license, but almost loses it when she forgets to put the brake on with the teacher still in the car.

Meanwhile, Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) invite Lily's pediatrician (Suzy Nakamura) (from "Run for Your Wife" episode) to their house for brunch, to get on her good side. However, it goes badly when Lily says "Mommy"—the gay couple's worst nightmare—even though she has never heard the word before. Mitch and Cam doubt their worth as parents because they believe Lily wants a mother. However, it's revealed at the end that Lily was imitating one of her favourite dolls says mommy when squeezed, not saying it due to the lack of a female roll model and the sudden presence of a woman in her pediatrician.

At the Pritchett house, Manny (Rico Rodriguez) is worried of a party that has a roller coaster, which happens to be his worst nightmare. Gloria (Sofía Vergara), to make Manny face his fear, tells him and Jay (Ed O'Neill) they are going fishing, but actually takes them on a roller-coaster. Manny originally says he'll go, but changes his mind when Jay refuses. Gloria calls them little girls and gives them her hat and purse and goes to roller coaster. After that, Manny and Jay follow her with Manny breaking his fear.[2]

Production[edit]

The episode is written by Steven Levitan, who co-created the show making it his fourth written episode for the season and directed by Reggie Hudlin. It was originally supposed to air March 3, 2010, but was moved up a week. It was the sixteenth episode produced for the season.

Reception[edit]

Ratings[edit]

In its original American broadcast, "Fears" was viewed by 8.08 million viewers getting an 18-49 Nielsen Rating of 3.5/9 15% percent down from the last original episode and also becoming the least viewed episode of the season after "Fizbo" and "Not in My House", but the most viewed program on ABC.[3] The episode ranked 20th in the 18-49 weekly ratings with 4.523 million viewers from the rating.[4]

Reviews[edit]

"Fears" received generally positive reviews.

Robert Canning of IGN gave the episode an 8.7 saying it was "Great" and "Modern Family has always been adept at adding those touching moments to the laughs. Good to know the series hasn't missed a step during its Olympic down time."[5]

Jason Hughes of the TV Squad gave the episode a positive review saying "In 16 episodes, most of which were fantastic, this was the first one to choke out a genuine emotional response from me. Phil's closing monologue was touching, and touched on another fear that all parents face: the fear of your children growing up too fast. That, and the fear that they're going to kill someone in your car."[6]

Donna Bowman from The A.V. Club gave the episode a A- saying it was "The voiceover about fear being an essential part of parenting rang true, and was illustrated perfectly with Manny's (and Jay's) coaster ride, Alex being asked to dance ("but what if they don't?" she asks her mother hesitantly after putting on a brave face all day), and Haley driving off on her own. We have to be there to rescue our children, and then we have to stand back and try to act like we don't think they need rescuing."[7]

Lesley Savage of Entertainment Weekly gave the episode a positive review and said "I don’t know about you guys, but I really missed my Family these past two weeks, and this episode was the perfect welcome back. It kept things in the family, no cameos, no big stunts, just each member doing what they do best. And it started off with a bang — with everyone stating what his or her greatest fears were."[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "'Modern Family' recap: Fright night". IGN.com. 2010-03-04. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  2. ^ "Listings - MODERN FAMILY on ABC". TheFutonCritic.com. Retrieved 2010-03-11. 
  3. ^ Robert Seidman. "TV Ratings: Nielsen Overnight TV Show Ratings, TV Ratings: American Idol Dominates; The Middle, Modern Family and Oprah Take a Dive". TV By the Numbers. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  4. ^ "Broadcast TV Show Ratings - Weekly Top 25, TV Ratings Top 25: Oscars, American Idol & The Big Bang Theory Top Weekly Broadcast Charts". TV By the Numbers. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  5. ^ Robert Canning. "Modern Family: "Fears" Review". IGN.com. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  6. ^ Jason Hughes (2010-03-04). "'Modern Family' - 'Fears' Recap - TV Squad". TV Squad. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  7. ^ Bowman, Donna (2010-03-03). "Fears". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  8. ^ Lesley Savage (2010-03-04). "'Modern Family' recap: Fright night". Retrieved 2010-03-10. 

External links[edit]