List of Modern Family characters

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Modern Family, an American TV comedy series, revolves around three families that are interrelated through Jay Pritchett, his son Mitchell Pritchett, and his daughter Claire Dunphy. The families meet for family functions, around the neighborhood, and cross-family bonding.

The Dunphy family[edit]

Phil Dunphy[edit]

Phil Dunphy
Ty Burrell cropped.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Ty Burrell
Gender Male
Occupation Real Estate Agent
Spouse(s) Claire Dunphy (1993–present)
Children Haley Dunphy
Alex Dunphy
Luke Dunphy

Philip Humphrey "Phil" Dunphy (Ty Burrell) is Claire's husband of 20 years who sees himself as the "cool dad."[1] He dotes on his wife Claire and constantly tries to find ways to bond with his three kids.[1] He is seen as very competitive, one example being his nature of always beating his son at basketball. He has a very juvenile attitude, and is referred to by Claire as the "kid [she's] married to." He uses a parenting method that he calls "peerenting", which is a combination of talking like a peer but acting like a parent.[1] He is a real estate agent who is very confident in his work, once saying "I could sell a fur coat to an Eskimo."[1] Phil has a severe case of coulrophobia, which is first revealed when despite Mitchell's objection, Cameron comes to Luke's party dressed as a clown. This may stem from the fact that Phil found a dead clown in the woods when he was a kid. Phil appears to love home repair yet never seems to get around to any of the jobs requested by Claire. Throughout Season 1, his ongoing project is fixing the step. He at times shows a sort of crush-like affection for Gloria. He says, however, he "would never stray from Claire," although Gloria did kiss him during a "kisscam" segment at a basketball game in the final episode of Season 1, "Family Portrait". He is also staring at her when she does something that makes Phil think she is sexy.[1] In college he was a cheerleader at Fresno State and his birthday is on April 3.[2] He seems oblivious as to what he says by miscalculating (if at all) the consequences of his expressions, such as "Phil Dunphy is no straight guy" (when he is referring to not being a straight man)[3] or "If you are not white, you ain't right" (referring to the color of a team that he was playing on).[4] He is often looking for approval from Jay because Jay generally does not openly show approval of anyone, often causing Phil to fear for his approval in Jay's eyes. Phil is always reminding Jay of when he fixed his wireless printer, trying to show Jay that he can be manly. In the Season 3 episode "Dude Ranch", Phil shows considerable skill both on horseback and with a shotgun.

In moments of acute adversity or shock in which most people would curse or swear, Phil utters humorous exclamations: references to food such as, "Sweet Potato Fries!" or "Chicken in a basket!", etc. or he might make a historical reference such as "John Philip Sousa!". It is revealed in "Tableau Vivant" that Phil had once tried to break up with Claire but didn't have the courage to do so.

A running gag in the show is when Phil is running up the stairs (often when carrying an object), he trips on a loose step, which causes him to quickly and hastily say: "Gotta fix that step!"

Critical reception[edit]

Ty Burrell had received many positive reviews for his performance. Hank Stuever from the Washington Post wrote, "A standout performance from Ty Burrell's new twist on the doofus-dad stereotype."[5] Paige Wiser, a reporter for the Chicago Sun Times, wrote, "Ty Burrell is a genius as a dad who stays hip by keeping up with the numbers from High School Musical."[6] Robert Canning of IGN in a review of the season loved Ty Burrell's performance of Phil Dunphy and named him one of two characters that stood out to him saying "actor Ty Burrell owned this part, and his well-intended faux pas throughout the season were stellar."[7]


In 2010, Ty Burrell received a nomination for the Television Critics Association Award for Individual Achievement in Comedy, winning in 2011. In 2011 and 2014, Burrell won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, also receiving nominations in 2010, 2012, and 2013. In 2012, Burrell won the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. In 2014, Burrell won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series, receiving nominations in 2011, 2012, and 2013. In 2010 and 2011, Burrell was nominated for the Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries, or Television Film.

Claire Dunphy[edit]

Claire Dunphy
Julie Bowen at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Julie Bowen
Gender Female
Occupation Works for construction supply warehouse
Spouse(s) Phil Dunphy (1993–present)
Children Haley Dunphy
Alex Dunphy
Luke Dunphy

Claire Melinda Dunphy (Julie Bowen), née Pritchett, is the daughter of Jay, Mitchell's older sister, Manny's step-sister, Joe's half-sister and the helicopter soccer mom of the Dunphy family and its three very different kids.[8] She was once a wild child who made a lot of mistakes over the years, and she is fearful that her children could make the same mistakes, especially her oldest daughter, Haley. She is often exhausted from stress created by her family but is still a loving mother.[8] When it comes to her kids she has difficulty controlling Haley's independence and irresponsibility, Alex's manipulative nature, and Luke's lack of common sense.[8] She also gets annoyed with her husband, Phil, constantly. Claire is very competitive especially in her obsession of being right, much like her husband, and has a brittle personality that causes her to get angry, paranoid, and freak out easily. She is very strict about a clean house. She is seen as an experienced parent by Cameron and Mitchell, so she is called upon for her parenting advice. She enjoys running and reading. She is also very attached to Halloween and describes it as her "crazy lady holiday". In the episode "Open House of Horrors" it is revealed that the neighbors are frightened of Claire's very graphic and realistic decorations around the house. Claire is also the most active family member when organizing family get-togethers. When a former co-worker (Minnie Driver) visits, it is revealed that Claire had a successful job in hospitality management but left her job and married Phil a few months after she became pregnant with Haley. She shows resentment towards the abandonment of her working career due to seeing the success of one of her former peers, but later realizes her family is more important.[9]

Claire is a perfectionist; according to Phil, "when everybody else sees something beautiful, all she sees is the teeny-tiny flaw." She is also terrible at giving gifts. As her husband Phil once bought her a bracelet for their anniversary, she made him coupons for five free hugs.

Her step-brother is Manny Delgado. Claire received another sibling through Jay's second wife Gloria – Fulgencio "Joe". She often despises the attention that Gloria gets for her voluptuous figure, and was thrilled to learn that Gloria was pregnant because of all the weight that Gloria would be gaining.

Critical reception[edit]

Julie Bowen's performance was praised by Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly who said, "Bowen's Claire could have been a blank blonde cipher. Far from it: Bowen's wide array of silent gazes at the camera, her slow-burns at her clan's bad behavior, and her ability to freak out without seeming nutso crazy makes her an essential, stand-out part of TV's best freshman ensemble cast."[10]


In 2011 and 2012, Julie Bowen won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, receiving nominations in 2010 and 2013. In 2012, Bowen won the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. She has also been nominated twice for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series in 2012 and 2014. In 2009, Bowen was nominated for the Satellite Award for Best Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy, and then for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries, or Television Film in 2010.

Haley Dunphy[edit]

Haley Dunphy
Sarah Hyland at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Sarah Hyland
Occupation Fashion Designer at Gavin Sinclair
Significant other(s)



Haley Gwendolyn Dunphy (Sarah Hyland) is the eldest daughter of Claire and Phil, who is portrayed as the stereotypical teenager.[11] Haley is 15 and a high school sophomore at the beginning of the series, and is a freshman in college in Season 4 (we discover in episode 1.14 that Claire was four months pregnant with Haley when she married Phil). Haley is depicted as being a bit of a flirt, who focuses more on social status than studies. She is a little naive, especially when it comes to arguing with her parents.[11] However, she is at times surprisingly cunning, such as when she carves a cell phone out of soap to win a contest to see who can go the longest without using technology. Haley is embarrassed by her dad, especially when he tries to be friends with her boyfriend Dylan (to whom she lost her virginity, as revealed in season 3).[11] She is concerned about her popularity at school, as well as her social and sexual life, which contributes to her being embarrassed by her parents. She is able to drive and talks to or texts her friends on her cell phone all the time. Haley also contemplated moving in with Dylan before learning that she got into college in the final episode of the third season. After a run-in with the law on campus in Season 4, she is expelled from college and is back living in the Dunphy home. She is now learning photography and business in community college and has had her photos shown in an exhibit and sold. In season 6, she is currently working as fashion designer and an assistant to Gavin Sinclair. It also revealed that she might have feelings for Andy (Jay and Gloria's hired nanny) and they begin hanging out often. They later both fall in love. Haley was born on December 10, 1993.[12] [13]


In 2013, Sarah Hyland was nominated for the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series.

Alex Dunphy[edit]

Alex Dunphy
Ariel Winter at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Ariel Winter
Gender Female
Occupation Student

Alexandria Anastasia "Alex" Dunphy (Ariel Winter) begins as the 13-year-old daughter of Claire and Phil and turns 17 in season five. Alex is the most intelligent of the three siblings and a polar opposite of Haley. She is very bright and cares much more about her studies than friends/social life and boys.[14] As the middle child to a shallow big sister and a goofy younger brother, she enjoys messing with them.[14] Often taking advantage of their naïveté by fooling them into believing unrealistic things, she at one time convinced Haley and Luke that they could charge electronics by rubbing the battery on their heads (Haley) and putting it in their mouths (Luke).[11] She, as a stereotypical precocious kid, displays a sense of superiority because of her intelligence constantly putting her accomplishments on display and demanding recognition for them. An overachiever, she plays the cello and practices lacrosse; she chose to play the cello because she would have a better chance at being in a university orchestra than if she played the violin as cellos are more in demand. While she has sometimes felt isolated from her peers (once sadly telling her parents "I have no friends"), she has a group of nerdy "fans" at school who idolize her. Haley sincerely tells her at one point she is smart and attractive in a successful effort to get Alex to give a light-hearted graduation speech instead of a harsh one (it worked well enough that Alex was invited to a post-ceremony party by her classmates). At the beginning of Season 3, she was in a long-distance relationship with a boy she met in Wyoming. Later in the season she went to her prom with a classmate who everyone but himself knows is gay. It was established recently in the episode "Tableau Vivant" that Alex is a light sleeper, as she was surprisingly energetic when staying awake nearly a whole night thinking about her upcoming art project. It was revealed in the episode "Heart Broken" that Alex faints every time she sees blood. In the second episode of season 5 onwards she started wearing new glasses. In season 6, Alex is currently seeking for the best college to enroll in and have a thought about getting away from her family for a while. While Alex was not accepted into Harvard, she was accepted into Caltech, where she will presumably be attending at the start of season 7. She is currently now seen to be dating Sanjay Patel.

Luke Dunphy[edit]

Luke Dunphy
Nolan Gould at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Nolan Gould
Gender Male
Occupation Student

Lucas Philip "Luke" Dunphy (Nolan Gould) is Claire and Phil's rambunctious son, who is often doing his own thing.[15] He was named after his great-grandfather, Lucas (DeDe's father). At times, he can be a troublemaker, once shooting his sister with a toy gun and getting into a fight with Manny at school. Luke is playful, very innocent and does not always understand the repercussions of his actions, like most children; he once announced at a family gathering that his mom thought her dad's new wife was a "gold digger", although he had misheard it as "coal digger".[15] He is also thought to be a bit vacuous because of many questionable actions, such as getting his head stuck in the banister and jumping on the trampoline wearing only underwear and a box on his head.[15] Both parents agree that they "dropped the ball" in regard to raising Luke; Phil once tells Claire that he considers Luke to be their dumbest child (although he conceded to Claire's assertion that Haley was, in fact, dumber than Luke). A psychologist who evaluated him said his type of behavior was normal for someone with above-average intelligence; afterwards, Phil and Claire accidentally left a wandering Luke behind when they left the psychologist's office, but they ended up being impressed by how calmly he made his way back home (in a limo) and decided he would do just fine in life. He is frequently seen playing a Nintendo 3DS. Throughout the series, he is often seen playing with Manny. Being that Luke's birthday is November 28, it usually coincides with Thanksgiving.[13][16]

The Pritchett-Delgado family[edit]

Jay Pritchett[edit]

Jay Pritchett
Ed O'Neill at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Ed O'Neill
Gender Male
Occupation Owner of a construction supply warehouse
Spouse(s) DeDe Pritchett (1968–2003)[note 1]
Gloria Pritchett (2009–present)
Children Claire Dunphy
Mitchell Pritchett
Manny Delgado (stepson)
Fulgencio Joseph "Joe" Pritchett

Jay Francis Pritchett (Ed O'Neill) is the father of Claire, Mitchell, and Joe; husband of Gloria; maternal grandfather of Luke, Alex, and Haley; adoptive grandfather of Lily; father-in-law of Phil and Cam; and stepfather of Manny. He is the owner of a closet company and is presumably the wealthiest family member as well occasionally the chieftain of the family in many situations. Jay has a dry and sarcastic sense of humor. Like his son and daughter, Jay is generally more realistic, mild-mannered, and sensible than his partner, Gloria, who is unashamed of the fact Jay is many years her senior. A recurring plot involves Jay's relationship with his son Mitchell, which became more complicated due to Jay's reaction to Mitchell's sexual orientation. Humor and plot points are also derived from Jay's relationship with his son-in-law Phil; Jay often mistreats and antagonizes him despite Phil's constant attempts to gain Jay's approval. Nevertheless, Jay thinks very highly of Phil, despite their differences, and said so in Season 3. Jay has several masculine character attributes including fondness for sports and model airplanes. Jay is shown also to occasionally be compassionate, showing affection for members of the extended family particularly to Manny, his stepson; their relationship seems to become more positive as the series progresses, eventually becoming a typical father-son relationship. In the finale of the third season it is revealed that Gloria is pregnant, but Jay does not know yet. In the first episode of the fourth season, Gloria tells Jay and he tells her that it's the greatest news he has heard. The baby was male, which relieved Jay because it says in the episode "Snip" that he was afraid of having a girl. Jay is a dog-lover. He sometimes goes overboard in treating his dog Stella as his favorite member of the family much to Gloria's chagrin, and Jay was extremely happy when he realized that Joe was not allergic to Stella, but to Gloria's face cream, in the episode "Rash Decisions". Jay is farsighted (hyperopia). Jay evidently served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War. His birthday is April 1, as shown in the episode "Grill, Interrupted".


Ed O'Neill has been consecutively nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series in 2011, 2012, and 2013. In 2011, he was nominated for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series and Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.[17]

Gloria Pritchett[edit]

Gloria Pritchett
Sofía Vergara at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Sofía Vergara
Gender Female
Occupation Hairdresser (formerly)
Taxi driver (formerly)
Spouse(s) Javier Delgado (1995–2006)
Jay Pritchett (2009–present)
Children Manny Delgado
Claire Dunphy (stepdaughter)
Mitchell Pritchett (stepson)
Joe Pritchett
Religion Roman Catholic
Nationality Colombian

Gloria Marie Ramirez-Pritchett (Sofía Vergara), formerly Delgado and née Ramirez, is Jay's second wife and mother to Manny and Joe. She is from Barranquilla, a city in Colombia (as is Sofia Vergara herself). She is a very loving wife and mother.[18] The most frequent running gag involving the character is her mispronunciation of common English words and phrases, and Vergara confirmed that many of these mispronunciations are improvised.[19] She often supports Manny when Jay tries to tell him to be less sensitive or hide his cultural background. However, she does occasionally display some odd parenting techniques. For example, when Manny was first born, she had wanted a daughter, and therefore for the first year of his life dressed him like one and told all her friends he was a girl. She later told Manny (after he found the pictures of himself like this) that the child in question was his "twin sister who died at the age of one." In the sixth episode of Season One, she chastizes Jay for forcing Manny to remove his poncho for school. When they get to the school to return the poncho and realize that Manny has a plan to play folk music to his classmates with his pan flute (which was inside the poncho), Gloria tells Jay to break the flute, saying in her interview that "the poncho by itself is fine. The poncho, plus the flute, plus the stupid dance? My son will die a virgin." She is a horrible driver, though she is oblivious to this. She often does things like put her breasts on Phil's face by accident. She is also very comfortable with death (on one occasion killing and beheading a rat with a shovel right before she left for church and leaving the head "as a warning to the other rats"), on account of a couple of her relatives being butchers.[18] She is an excellent markswoman, often just using one hand and never misses a shot, even saying to Manny that she could've unbuttoned his shirt if she wanted to with her gun (formerly Manny's BB gun). She has a very high tolerance for spicy food, and has perhaps the strongest religious views of any member of the family.[citation needed] She loves her family and spends a lot of time with Lily because of her fixation in having a daughter. Mitchell and Cameron asked her and Jay to become guardians of Lily if anything were to happen to them. Gloria has something of a shady past. Doubts have also been raised as to her income: her only mentioned employment was as a hairdresser (and later as a taxi driver), and Claire, Jay's daughter, originally labeled Gloria as a "gold-digger" for marrying her wealthy father. It seems likely that Jay is her major source of income. However in the Season 5 episode "A Hard Jay's Night", the hairshop where she used to work is shown, and it is clarified that Jay is indeed her current major source of income. In the final episode of Season 3, it was revealed that she is pregnant. Her newest son Fulgencio a.k.a. Joe was born in the Season 4 episode "Party Crasher". In the episode "Fifteen Percent" she reveals that she comes from a neighborhood of prostitutes after she said her neighborhood had a saying that "Love is just around the corner". The Hispanic American character of Gloria was based on the character of Angela in the 1991 Jim Jarmusch film Night on Earth, played by American actress Rosie Perez.[20]


Sofía Vergara has been nominated four times for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series and the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries, or Television Film. In 2011, Vergara was nominated for the Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries, or Television Film and Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. She was also nominated for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series in 2011, 2012, and 2013.

Manny Delgado-Pritchett[edit]

Manny Delgado-Pritchett
Rico Rodriguez at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Rico Rodriguez
Gender Male
Occupation Student
Nationality Colombian-American

Manuel Alberto Javier Alejandro "Manny" Delgado-Pritchett (Rico Rodriguez), Gloria's son from her first marriage to Javier, is very outgoing and not the least bit self-conscious,[21] although he has become somewhat self-conscious in Season 5. He is very intelligent, probably second after Alex, but much in a street smart way. He is also mature and intuitive for his age and is often shown doing adult-like things, such as having conversations with Claire about her marriage and kids, and drinking coffee. He even engaged in stock market business and briefly considered following in his biological father's footsteps by becoming a professional gambler .[21] He has inherited his mother's passion for life (although he is terrified of butterflies), though Gloria has also said, "Manny is passionate, just like his father."[18] This causes Manny to be very romantic.[21] Manny is not afraid to take chances, leading him to ask out older girls, and develop a crush on Haley.[21] He idolizes his absentee father, often speaking about him in a positive light, even after being repeatedly disappointed by his father's broken promises. He plays for a soccer team, fences, and is a skilled chess player. He is often seen wearing or intending to wear his "burgundy dinner jacket." Manny was in the fifth grade in Season 1 and is in the ninth grade in Season 5.

Joe Pritchett[edit]

Joe Pritchett
First appearance "Party Crasher"
4x12, January 16, 2013
Portrayed by Uncredited (season 4)
Pierce Wallace (season 5-6)
Jeremy Maguire (season 7-)[22]
Gender Male

Fulgencio Joseph "Joe" Pritchett is Gloria and Jay's son. Gloria announced she was pregnant with him in the final episode of season 3, his existence was revealed to the rest of the cast in the first episode of season 4, and he was born in "Party Crasher". Joe's christening took place in "Fulgencio". In the Season 5 episode "Spring-a-Ding-Fling", he begins walking. In episode "Larry's Wife" Gloria calls over the priest believing that there is evil in Joe. The priest does a blessing on Joe but leaves when Joe pick-pocketed the priest's wallet. Gloria returns the wallet and apologizes. Later in the Season 5 episode "And One to Grow On", it is Joe's birthday and Jay wants to reuse birthday decorations from Manny's birthday party the day before but Gloria refuses. In episode "Queer Eyes, Full Hearts", Manny's Spanish teacher teaches Joe to swim.


Stella Pritchett
First appearance "Good Cop Bad Dog"
2x22, May 11, 2011
Portrayed by Brigitte
Species Canis lupus familiaris (French Bulldog)
Gender Female
Occupation Pritchett family's pet

Stella (Brigitte) is the French bulldog of the Pritchett family, introduced in the second season.[23] She was the dog of a man named Guillermo (Lin-Manuel Miranda), an inventor, but when Jay convinced him to abandon his idea and return to school, Guillermo gave Stella to the family. She is very problematic, and often destroys things, mostly Gloria's belongings. However, Jay has a great affection for her (letting her sleep in his bed and feeding her from the dinner table), which infuriates Gloria because Jay seems to pay more love and attention to the dog than his own wife.

The Tucker-Pritchett family[edit]

Mitchell Pritchett (Mitch)[edit]

Mitchell Pritchett
Jesse Tyler Ferguson May 2014 (cropped).jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Jesse Tyler Ferguson
Gender Male
Occupation Lawyer
Spouse(s) Cameron Tucker (2014–present)
Children Lily Tucker-Pritchett
(adoptive daughter)

Mitchell Vincent Pritchett (Jesse Tyler Ferguson), also referred to as Mitch, is Jay's son; Claire's younger brother, Manny's step-brother, Joe's half-brother, Luke, Alex and Haley's uncle; one of Lily's fathers; and partner of eight years to Cameron.[24] He is a low-key, mild-mannered person, but has many sensitive qualities. At most times he is the exact opposite of Cameron which usually causes disagreements. Cameron acts as a counterbalance to Mitchell's uptight, worrying ways. Because of his mild-mannered, uptight nature, he is sometimes embarrassed by Cameron's flamboyance. He is uncomfortable with public displays of affection, as well as invasion of his personal space. He is an overprotective and cautious father. He is shown to be an excellent lawyer, even representing an entire building full of people one-by-one with no prior notice.[25] A recurring theme on the show is Mitchell's relationship with his father, which was strained by the revelation of Mitchell's homosexuality. Mitchell is a musical theater fan and enjoyed ice skating as a kid, though he later admitted that he liked working with his sister as a team more than the ice skating itself. Although he fancies himself as a handyman, everybody is afraid of him around tools. From his degrees hanging in his office, it is apparent that Mitchell attended undergrad at Cornell University and law school at Columbia University.

Critical reception[edit] has named Mitchell and Cameron one of the "Five Best TV Dads," saying, "Cam and Mitchell adopted baby Lily from Vietnam way back in Modern Family's pilot episode, and have been inadvertently Americanizing her ever since."[26]


Jesse Tyler Ferguson has been nominated five times for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.

Cameron Tucker (Cam)[edit]

Cameron Tucker
Eric Stonestreet at 2015 PaleyFest.jpg
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Eric Stonestreet
Gender Male
Occupation High School Football Coach
Physical Education Teacher
Middle school music teacher
Spouse(s) Mitchell Pritchett (2014–present)
Children Lily Tucker-Pritchett
(adoptive daughter)
Nationality American

Cameron Scott Tucker (Eric Stonestreet),[27] also referred to as Cam, is Mitchell's partner of eight years, and one of Lily's fathers, who has a very big dramatic personality. He frequently behaves like a drama queen. His bubbly outgoing personality contrasts to Mitchell's uptight manner, which causes them to have opposing character traits.[28] Cameron was born on February 29, 1972 and grew up on a farm in Missouri. He was a starting center for the University of Illinois football team (which he and Jay bond over, much to Mitchell's envy) and is a very big sports fan.[28] Because of this, he is physically quite imposing, and capable of scaring off anyone who threatens Mitchell. Cameron also fosters many unusual hobbies such as collecting antique fountain pens, being adept in Japanese flower arrangement, and is a classically trained Auguste clown named Fizbo.[28] Cameron prides himself in shooting home films, not movies, and takes that role very seriously. Currently, he acts as a stay-at-home dad to Lily, though it is mentioned that he had taught music prior to this. Cameron is also an experienced rock drummer and as a result was brought in at the last minute to play in Dylan's band when they needed a replacement percussionist. It is also mentioned that Cameron was considerably thinner and in better shape when he first started dating Mitchell. For the first few episodes, his relationship with Mitchell was somewhat strained (as they disagreed on almost everything and showed very different parenting techniques). But in more recent episodes the relationship is much happier.[28] Cameron and Mitchell met at one of Pepper Saltzman's "legendary" soirees, where during a game of charades, Cameron immediately knew the answer, "Casablanca," based on a subtle gesture Mitchell made with his hands. Common interests, like art, led them to form a relationship. Mitchell is impressed by Cameron's quirks, such as speaking French (to which Cameron replies, "un peu," or "a little"). Cameron is also said to be a fan of the movie The Wizard of Oz in the episode "Leap Day" when Mitchell plans him a surprise birthday party.[24] During season 4, he goes back to work as a music teacher at Luke and Manny's school. In season 5, his music teacher job is eliminated, but he becomes the freshman football coach and physical education teacher. In season 6, he is promoted to varsity coach and his undefeated record and open homosexuality earned him a story on the local TV news.

Critical reception[edit]

Eric Stonestreet has received positive reviews for his characters. In a review of the first season, Robert Canning of IGN named Cameron Tucker the best character of the season saying, "Cameron's many talents and passions revealed over the course of this first year became an ever-building running gag. But it will be hard to top the sheer joy that was 'Fizbo'." He also called Fizbo, the episode and the clown, the highlight of the season.[7] The reception of Cameron and Mitchell has led to the idea of a spin-off of the two titled Mitchell and Cam.[29]


In 2010, Eric Stonestreet was nominated for the Television Critics Association Award for Individual Achievement in Comedy.[30] Stonestreet has won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series twice in 2010 and 2012. He was also nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries, or Television Film in 2011, 2012, and 2013, along with receiving nominations for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series in 2011, 2012, and 2013. In 2011, along with Ed O'Neill and Ty Burrell, Stonestreet was nominated for the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.

Lily Tucker-Pritchett[edit]

Lily Tucker-Pritchett
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Jaden Hiller and Ella Hiller
(seasons 1-2)
Aubrey Anderson-Emmons
(season 3–present)
Gender Female
Occupation Student
Nationality Vietnamese-American

Lillian Elizabeth "Lily" Tucker-Pritchett (Aubrey Anderson-Emmons) is the adopted Vietnamese daughter of Cameron and Mitchell. She is named after the adopted daughter of Charlotte from the HBO series Sex and the City, and Cam's pig "Aunt Lily". When she was introduced to the family, they accepted her with open arms, although Mitchell originally wanted to wait to tell them about her.[25] She is at times doing activities with both of her fathers but remains with Cam at home while Mitchell works.[28] Cameron often dresses her up as famous people, such as Diana Ross, Olivia Newton-John, Madonna, and Stevie Wonder for the purpose of taking photographs. Cameron and Mitchell practiced the Ferber method on Lily when she was a baby, but Cameron usually couldn't resist catering to her during the night, sometimes even watching movies such as Scarface, which Cam claims she likes possibly because of the bright colors, particularly the club shooting scene. Lily did not speak for the first two seasons and was portrayed by twins Ella Hiller and Jaden Hiller. For season three, the twins "retired", their mother claiming they did not enjoy acting.[31] The role was recast to Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, who is older, and has a speaking role. Since she has been able to speak, Lily has displayed a penchant for precocious sarcasm and theatricality, which can be attributed to the influence from each of her fathers. She was born February 19, 2008.


First appearance "Bringing Up Baby"
4x01, September 26, 2012
Gender Male
Occupation Lily's pet Tomcat

Larry is the pet cat of Lily, Cameron, and Mitchell. They adopted him after Cameron and Mitchell failed to adopt a second child.

Other family members[edit]


First appearance "The Incident"
1x04, October 14, 2009
Last appearance 2012
Portrayed by Shelley Long
Gender Female
Spouse(s) Jay Pritchett (1968–2003)
Significant other(s) Chad
Children Claire Dunphy
Mitchell Pritchett

DeDe (Shelley Long) is Mitchell and Claire's mother and Jay's ex-wife. It has been implied that she may be mentally ill due to her somewhat manipulative and sometimes aggressive ways. It is implied that she was initially more accepting of Mitchell's sexual orientation than Jay was when he first came out. She often uses her close relationship with Mitchell to get him to do things he does not want to. Jay wanted to divorce her after a spectacular fight they had while their kids were still in school (he taped over an episode of Dallas to record an NFL game that, ironically, featured the Dallas Cowboys) but was inspired by an animatronic Abraham Lincoln exhibit at Disneyland to stick things out until Claire and Mitchell reached adulthood. She is still bitter over Jay's remarriage to Gloria and even attempted to ruin their wedding, which she convinced Mitchell to talk Jay and Gloria into inviting her to; she got drunk and made rude and inappropriate toasts and eventually had to be dragged out of the reception, in the process ruining the wedding cake. She is very aggressive towards Gloria, often trying to physically attack her. DeDe is also passive aggressive toward Cameron about his weight, and is often critical of Claire, especially her appearance. She also seems to be very good friends with Manny as they write letters to each other talking about their personal issues. DeDe is also a famous author and poet. A running gag throughout the series is that DeDe's arrival is always forewarned by bad omens, (birds crashing into the window or peaceful scenarios spontaneously turning chaotic).

Her antagonistic and aggressive relationship to Gloria surprisingly changes in the episode "Arrested." When DeDe sees that Gloria is pregnant, she finds it so fantastic that her ex-husband is going to be a father again at his age. It also seemed to have fixed her uterus which she claimed was telescopic and they both bonded over Jay-bashing when DeDe tells Gloria that she was always the one having to change diapers, clean spit-up and getting baby equipment. Gloria was sympathetic explaining that it makes sense to why DeDe became so crazy to which DeDe answered "Right?".

Frank Dunphy[edit]

Frank Dunphy
First appearance "Undeck the Halls"
1x10, December 9, 2009
Portrayed by Fred Willard
Gender Male
Children Phil Dunphy

Francis Allen "Frank" Dunphy (Fred Willard) is Phil's father and Haley, Alex, and Luke's paternal grandfather. On Christmas, the family shared a webcam chat with him.

Frank returns in "Travels with Scout" when he travels cross country without Phil's mother and shows up with a dog that he says she has allergies to. He ends up taking the dog back with him.[32][33] Frank is kind of a polar opposite of Jay's (Claire's father) grumpiness and dry manner, as he is seen being laid back, funny and cool most of the time. This is clearly mentioned by Claire in "Closet, You'll Love it !" when most family members refer to Jay as 'Grump-pa' while Frank is referred to as 'Fun-pa'. His attitude is a near carbon copy of Phil's personality. At the end of season 4, it is revealed that Frank's wife (Phil's mother) had died.

In 2010, Fred Willard was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series.

Javier Delgado[edit]

Javier Delgado
Benjamin Bratt - parade Grand Master.jpg
First appearance "Up All Night"
1x11, January 6, 2010
Portrayed by Benjamin Bratt
Gender Male
Spouse(s) Gloria Delgado-Pritchett (1995-2006)
Children Manny Delgado
Nationality Colombian

Javier Delgado (Benjamin Bratt) is Manny's biological father and Gloria's ex-husband. He and Gloria were divorced; in the pilot, Gloria says all they did was "fight and make love," at one point leading them to fall out of a window. Manny looks up to him, but Javier always lets him down, while Jay is left downcast by the reminders that Manny has another dad. He is oddly gifted when it comes to betting on horse racing. However, in Flip Flop he has a girlfriend named Trish (Paget Brewster) and almost gets married to her.

Javier was formerly a Triple-A Baseball player and played alongside such baseball greats as Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire. He has many connections to matadors and baseball players. He and Jay became close, but in the end Javier lets Jay down just as he does Manny.[34]

Barb Tucker[edit]

Barb Tucker
Celia Weston.jpg
First appearance "Mother Tucker"
2x09, November 24, 2010
Portrayed by Celia Weston
Gender Female
Children Cameron Tucker

Barb Tucker (Celia Weston) is Cameron's mother. She first appeared in the episode "Mother Tucker." In that episode, she visits Cameron and Mitchell. While Cameron earnestly declares that his mother is wonderful, Mitchell is less sure because she has a habit of touching Mitchell inappropriately. When Mitchell finally tells Cameron about this, Barb happens to walk in on them and hears his complaints. Later, she apologizes to Mitchell. Unfortunately, she does this while he is in the bathtub. In "The Wedding, Part 1" and "The Wedding, Part 2", she attends her son's wedding to Mitchell and almost ends it with Merle, but Jay and Gloria manage to reconcile the two.

Merle Tucker[edit]

Merle Tucker
Peg Phillips and Barry Cobin.jpg
Barry Corbin (right)
First appearance "The Last Walt"
3x20, April 18, 2012
Portrayed by Barry Corbin
Gender Male
Children Cameron Tucker

Merle Tucker (Barry Corbin) is Cameron's father. He first appeared in the episode "The Last Walt." In that episode, he visits Cameron and Mitchell. Later in the episode, it is revealed that Jay (Mitchell's father) and Merle dislike each other. Cameron and Mitchell each believe that their father is the stronger of the two. It is made known that Merle wishes that the man his son lives with was, "A little bit of a woman." Jay and Merle overcome their differences and bond while fixing the bed frame that Cameron had purchased and attempted to put together. In "The Wedding, Part 1" and "The Wedding, Part 2", he attends his son's wedding to Mitchell and almost ends it with Barb, but Jay and Gloria manage to reconcile the two.


Actress, Elizabeth Pena at the 2009 East Classic Theater Fundraiser.jpg
First appearance "Fulgencio"
4x13, January 23, 2013
Portrayed by Elizabeth Peña
Gender Female
Children Gloria Pritchett

Pilar (Elizabeth Peña) is Gloria's mother. She first appeared in the episode "Fulgencio." In that episode, she and her other daughter Sonia visit Jay and Gloria shortly after their son Joe is born. She reveals that she never liked Jay and wants to name Joe after her husband and father (Fulgencio Umberto).

In "The Old Man & the Tree", she visits her daughter for Christmas and appears to treat Claire more as a daughter than Gloria after taking a liking to Claire.


Actor Stephanie Beatriz.jpg
First appearance "Fulgencio"
4x13, January 23, 2013
Portrayed by Stephanie Beatriz
Gender Female

Sonia (Stephanie Beatriz) is Gloria's sister. She first appeared in the episode "Fulgencio." In that episode, she and her mother Pilar visit Jay and Gloria shortly after their son Joe is born. She appears to be wanting to get out of Colombia after a flood occurred there and later at Joe's christening, she and Gloria get into a fight over how Jay originally liked Sonia, not Gloria.

She returns in "Valentine's Day 4: Twisted Sister", she visits her sister and her family and tries to make a move on Jay, because she is still infatuated with him. She then tries to get Gloria out of the picture and when Jay tells Gloria, she doesn't believe him. Jay goes to his room to apologize to Sonia and then she tries to make a move on him there, only to be heard via a baby monitor and then Gloria enters and realizes Jay was right and the sisters resume fighting over him.

Donnie Pritchett[edit]

Donnie Pritchett
Jonathan Banks by Gage Skidmore.jpg
First appearance "The Musical Man"
2x19, April 13, 2011
Portrayed by Jonathan Banks
Gender Male
Children Jay Pritchett

Donnie Pritchett (Jonathan Banks) is Jay's brother. He first appeared in the episode "The Musical Man" where he visits Jay and they soon start bickering and later Jay finds out he's suffering from cancer.

He attends Luke and Manny's musical and there he and Jay share an emotional moment together.

Other recurring characters[edit]

Dylan Marshall[edit]

Dylan Marshall
First appearance "Pilot"
1x01, September 23, 2009
Portrayed by Reid Ewing
Gender Male
Occupation Musician, cowboy, Disneyland employee.

Dylan Marshall (Reid Ewing), sometimes called "D-Money" by Phil, is Haley's on-and-off boyfriend, a senior in high school who plays guitar and sings in a band and has no plans for college. He is often put into awkward situations by Phil, who wishes for the two to be friends.[11] He has diverse interests that are often surprising, such as his love of old western films. He also sometimes reveals a sort-of attraction to Claire, when he gives her a rose on Valentine's Day, saying that "every mom should look as tasty as you when they're old." He also had a dream involving a (suggested) sexual encounter involving himself, Haley, and Claire. Claire strongly dislikes him, to the point of trying to introduce other boys to Haley just so that they break up or don't get back together. He loves the confidence Haley gets from being part of such a loving family and does not mind hanging around during family get togethers.[11] He wrote a song for Haley, "In the Moonlight (Do Me)", and performed it for her extended family. The song was about sex and most of the family were surprised by the suggestive lyrics, but it became stuck in all of their heads the next day. He is also a hockey player and finds inspiration for his music from Bob Dylan, Sum 41, Blink-182, and New Kids on the Block. Dylan temporarily leaves the cast to work on a ranch after Haley rejects his marriage proposal in the first episode of season three, "Dude Ranch". In the episode "Virgin Territory", Alex reveals that Haley had lost her virginity to Dylan before they broke up; she told Claire three months earlier, but not Phil. In the episode "Disneyland," Dylan reveals he lost his job on the ranch and moved back to California, taking a job at Disneyland as a Dapper Dan. He and Haley get back together to Claire's dismay and to Phil's delight. In the season Finale, "Baby on Board," Haley discovers she was accepted to college. She and Dylan maintain their relationship, and Dylan lives with the Dunphys for a few months. In Season 4, Dylan is invited to move in with Cam and Mitch after his work as a limo driver led him to their Valentine's Day party (some of their friends invited Dylan to stay for the party, and Cam offered him at some point to stay at their house), but he ends up getting fired and, while Cam and Mitch separately tell him he can stick around, Lily angrily tells him he isn't welcome there and yells at him until he leaves the house.

Gil Thorpe[edit]

Gil Thorpe
First appearance "Flip Flop"
4x20, April 10, 2013
Last appearance 2014
Portrayed by Rob Riggle
Gender Male

Gil Thorpe (Rob Riggle) is Southern California's most successful real estate agent and nemesis/arch-rival of Phil Dunphy. Phil is often seen on camera lamenting over constantly coming second to Gil in many real estate competitions. He is mentioned indirectly in "Not in My House", "Diamond in the Rough" and "Strangers on a Treadmill". He appears for the first time in character in the episode "Flip Flop", as he attempts to strike a deal for his buyer through Phil on the home renovated by Claire and Cam. He makes his second appearance on the show in the episode "Career Day", where he shows up for Career Day in Luke and Manny's class during Phil's presentation. Seeing Claire's visible frustration at being a housewife, he offers her a position on his real estate team. He is known for his energetic, lively, and harassing personality as well as his tendency to use his own name in replacement of words in conversation (e.g. "Thorpedoed," "Gil Pickles,"). In the "Career Day" episode Gil mentioned he played quarterback at Texas Tech. It is revealed his daughter is a student in Luke and Manny's class. In "The Feud", he returns, beating Phil at a Real Estate contest, but Luke wrestles against his own son (name is unknown), but lost to Phil in the wrestling match.

Andy Bailey[edit]

Andy Bailey
Adam Devine 2013 (cropped).jpg
First appearance "The Help"
5x06, October 23, 2013
Portrayed by Adam DeVine
Gender Male
Occupation Nanny

Andy Bailey[35] (Adam DeVine) is the Pritchetts' nanny for Joe. He is extremely friendly and cordial and refuses to use any sort of "bad language." Gloria took an immediate liking for Andy upon meeting him, but Jay disapproved of his overly nice nature, saying "He's a weird man. He's like Phil only I have to pay for him." He often butts heads with Haley as she is rude and breaks rules, and she makes fun of him for his overly amiable nature. He talks about his long-time girlfriend who is in the Coast Guard in Utah, but she breaks up with him in "The Wedding (Part 1)". Haley discovers that she has been keeping Andy "on the hook" for the last 7 years as they have been on-again off-again and she does not treat Andy the way he treats her. Haley begins to appreciate Andy's demeanor and treatment of women in "Other People's Children" and tries to perhaps start a relationship with him in the episodes "The Wedding (Part 1)" and "The Wedding (Part 2)". However, Alex convinces Haley that she is not that into him and she stops her pursuit as Andy was ready to jump into it. Afterwards, Andy drives away, perhaps to his flight to see his ex-girlfriend.

In the Season 6 episode "The Cold", Andy and Haley discuss their relationship. They agree that it's better they stay friends, however Haley gets upset when Andy claims that if they had kissed she wouldn't be able to get over him. To try to prove him wrong, Haley kisses him. Andy is unaffected by this but Haley has a smitten look afterwards. In the episode "Queer Eyes, Full Hearts", Haley helps Andy get a job as Phil's assistant and Andy helps her prepare for an interview with a fashion designer. During the episode they seem completely platonic and it is also revealed that Andy is back together with Beth. In "Rash Decisions", Luke becomes distant from Phil and Andy becomes his right-hand man.


Elizabeth Banks 2012 Shankbone 2.JPG
First appearance "Great Expectations"
1x08, November 18, 2009
Portrayed by Elizabeth Banks
Gender Female

Sal (Elizabeth Banks) is Mitch and Cameron's wild, partying, boozy friend. In the episode "Great Expectations" she becomes very jealous of the attention Lily had been getting and threatens to kill her multiple times. In the episode "Best Men", she gets married and enlists Cam and Mitch to be the best men at the wedding. However, in the episode, "The Wedding (Part 1)" she tells them that she got divorced and she is obviously pregnant. Sal had declared herself the officiator of the wedding while Cam and Mitch were trying to have intervention about her drinking. In "The Wedding (Part 2)" Sal's water breaks in the middle of the (first) ceremony. She convinces her new boyfriend of four months (who believes he is the father) that the baby is coming early and when a baby comes so early, sometimes it is black.

It eventually transpires (in "Fight or Flight") that Sal's baby is white and she is raising the baby alone, having presumably split from the man she was seeing at the time of Mitch and Cameron's wedding. When Mitch, Cam, Pepper and friends throw her a baby shower, she is seen to be far more mature and responsible, due to the birth of her baby, despite everyone fearing the worst when she disappears in the middle of the party.

Walt Kleezak[edit]

Walt Kleezak
Philip Baker Hall at the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival.jpg
First appearance "Boys' Night"
2x18, March 23, 2011
Portrayed by Philip Baker Hall
Gender Male
Occupation Retired fireman

Walt Kleezak (Philip Baker Hall) was Phil and Claire's next door neighbour. He first appeared in the episode "Boys' Night", where Luke goes over to his house to retrieve their ball which had flown into his yard. Phil and Claire find out and are not pleased with Luke because they feel that Walt is not very nice. They then go over to his house to interrogate him and he snaps at them and tells them to keep Luke. The next morning, Luke reprimands Walt for not being nice to his parents and they could not hang out. Walt then makes things up by generously giving Claire and Phil onions from his garden and tells them that he used to be a fireman, so he never hurts kids and he becomes friends with the Dunphys through his friendship with Luke.

In "Lifetime Supply", he comes over to the Dunphy house with Luke to play video games and upon entering tells Gloria to win a war some time and then they (Americans) would start talking like her. He then plays with Luke and beats him, due to Phil constantly staring at Luke. Phil asks Walt if he thinks about death and Walt replies that he's 85 and death is his roommate. He then leaves to go change his oxygen tank.

In "Election Day", he comes to attend Claire's election vote as Phil was given the task of driving 50 senior citizens to the polls to vote for Claire, but only managed to bring Walt and he kept needing things: his glasses, a new oxygen tank, food and to take his pills. This results in the polls closing and Phil gets only one extra vote for Claire instead of fifty.

In "The Last Walt", it was revealed that Walt died from a heart attack. Luke decided he want to inherit Walt's television which he does. It was also revealed that Walt had a daughter whom he became estranged from and he had never fixed his estrangement from her.

Ronnie LaFontaine[edit]

Ronnie LaFontaine
Zahn, Steve (2008).jpg
First appearance "Won't You Be Our Neighbor"
2x18, October 22, 2014
Portrayed by Steve Zahn
Gender Male
Occupation Unknown

Ronnie LaFontaine (Steve Zahn) is a man who moves next door to the Dunphys with his wife, Amber and their children, Ronnie Jr. And Tammy. He and his wife both turn out to be loud and obnoxious and the Dunphys dislike them. Their rivalry soon ends in "Knock 'Em Down" when they share a mutual dislike of a pornographic statue in their neighborhood and they soon go out to dinner and we find out that the Dunphys and the LaFontaines have many things in common and later that same night they are drinking wine together in their neighborhood.

Special guest stars[edit]

Season 1[edit]

Season 2[edit]

Season 3[edit]

Season 4[edit]

Season 5[edit]

Season 6[edit]

Season 7[edit]


  1. ^ In an episode from the second season that aired in 2011, Claire and Mitchell recalled a childhood incident that occurred twenty years prior, and later said that their parents divorced "twelve years later". With this information, twenty years prior to 2011 is 1991, and twelve years after that is 2003. In the third season, Jay comments that he and DeDe were married for thirty-five years.


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External links[edit]