Suddenly, Last Summer (Modern Family)

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"Suddenly, Last Summer"
Modern Family episode
Episode no. Season 5
Episode 1
Directed by James Bagdonas
Written by Jeffrey Richman
Production code 5ARG01
Original air date September 25, 2013
Episode chronology
← Previous
"Goodnight Gracie"
Next →
"First Days"
List of Modern Family episodes

"Suddenly, Last Summer" is the first episode of the fifth season of the American sitcom Modern Family, and the series' 97th overall. It was aired on September 25, 2013. The episode was written by Jeffrey Richman and it was directed by James Bagdonas.


Gay marriage in California is now legal and Cam (Eric Stonestreet) and Mitch (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) are excited since now they can get married. They both start thinking if a proposal would be something that they should do now or wait. Cam asks Gloria (Sofía Vergara) for her advice/help and after she is telling him that he should propose to Mitch, Cam tries to find the perfect way to do it. Mitch has the same thoughts and he asks Claire (Julie Bowen) for help since being romantic is not something that comes easy to him. Claire's ideas though do not really help since she is even less romantic than he is, so he decides to do it his own way.

Cam takes Mitch to the restaurant where they had their first date and Mitch realizes immediately why Cam took him there. Mitch finds an excuse to leave and go back home since if Cam proposes, it will destroy his plans of proposing to Cam and being romantic for the first time. On their way back home, they get a flat tire and as they both kneel to change the tire, they just look at each other, share a smile, and say "yes" at the same time.

In the meantime, Claire and Phil (Ty Burrell) try to organize a kid-free week so they can be alone by coordinating Luke's (Nolan Gould) summer camp with Alex's (Ariel Winter) volunteering excursion and Haley's (Sarah Hyland) beach trip.

At the Delgado-Pritchett house, Manny (Rico Rodriguez) gets ready for his first solo trip to Colombia to see Gloria's family. Jay (Ed O'Neill) tries to make him get ready as fast as possible before Gloria changes her mind about sending him away.



In its original American broadcast, "Suddenly, Last Summer" (that was aired along with the second episode of season five, First Days) was watched by 11.68 million.[1] It was the least watched premiere out of all seasons; the Pilot was watched by 12.61 million,[2] The Old Wagon was watched by 12.61 million,[3] Dude Ranch was watched by 14.54 million[4] and Bringing Up Baby was watched by 14.44 million.[5] However, it was up by 1.67 million from the last episode, Goodnight Gracie of season four.


"Suddenly, Last Summer" received generally positive reviews, with the critics being positive with Mitchell and Cameron's plot and the idea of the two characters getting married.

Joe Reid of The A.V. Club gave a 'B+' grade to the episode (along with First Days one) saying: ""Suddenly, Last Summer" is the classic Summer Vacation Episode that can either happen at the beginning or end of a season and kind of exists somewhere out of time."[6]

Leigh Raines of TV Fanatic rated the two episodes with a 5/5 saying that both of the show's episodes were strong. "I laughed out loud a few times, got a little misty eyed at moments and did a combination of the two when Jay started crying at Manny's letter and wanted to mail him his second robe. Only the best shows can bring out that kind of dual reaction!"[7]

Madina Papadopoulos from Paste Magazine rated the episode with 8.1/10 saying that the season is off to a great start. "The characters came off strong, the jokes hit, and there were tear-jerking moments at the end. [...] As usual, the characters are incredible, the writing is impeccable, and there is a sweetness to the show which elevates it above just a sitcom."[8]

Matt LeMaire from The MacGuffin net rated both episodes with 8/10. "...that moment when they both knelt down to change the tire and both said yes was quite sweet and heartfelt–ultimately perfect for these characters. Truthfully, that scene couldn’t have been written better." It closes the review with: "As a premiere, both episodes did a good job of bringing us back into the world of Modern Family and while there were certainly some predictable elements, it’s our love of these characters that shines through as they navigate through their daily lives."[9]

Emily Carlstrom from Better With Popcorn rated both episodes with 7.5/10. " favourite part of the episode was Clare’s ‘ghoulish’ scenarios for Mitch to use when proposing to Cam after the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. Including Cam and Mitch’s reactions to this historic win was really important in grounding the current political climate in the real [realistic] lives of individuals."[10]


The premiere of this season of the series began with new opening credits, which Nolan Gould stated had been done because everyone had grown up so much.[11] In the scene where Jay and Manny go to the court house to get Manny's birth certificate, the people who are standing outside the court house are crew members of the show, including the cast director of the show, Jeff Greenberg, and his partner Lars.[12][13]


  1. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (September 26, 2013). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'The Middle', 'Modern Family' and 'Survivor' Adjusted Up; 'Nashville' & 'CSI' Adjusted Down". TV by Numbers. 
  2. ^ Seidman, Robert (September 24, 2009). "Wednesday broadcast finals: Modern Family down a tenth, Cougar Town up a tenth with adults 18-49". TV by the Numbers. 
  3. ^ Seidman, Robert (September 26, 2010). "TV Ratings Wednesday: 'Modern Family' Leads Night; Survivor, Criminal Minds Very Strong; 'Undercovers' Middling; The Whole Truth' Bombs". TV by the Numbers. 
  4. ^ Seidman, Robert (September 22, 2011). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'The X Factor,' 'Modern Family,' 'The Middle,' And Others Adjusted Up; 'Revenge' Adjusted Down". TV by the Numbers. 
  5. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (September 27, 2012). "Wednesday Final Ratings: 'X Factor', 'Survivor', 'The Middle' Adjusted Up, 'The Neighbors' Adjusted Down". TV by the Numbers. 
  6. ^ Reid, Joe (September 26, 2013). ""Suddenly, Last Summer"/"First Days"". The A.V .Club. 
  7. ^ Raines, Leigh (September 26, 2013). "Modern Family Review: Today's a New Beginning". TV Fanatic. 
  8. ^ Papadopoulos, Madina (September 26, 2013). "Modern Family Review: "Suddenly, Last Summer" (Season 5, Premiere)". Paste Magazine. 
  9. ^ LeMaire, Matt. "Modern Family – "Suddenly, Last Summer / First Days" (S05E01 & S05E02) Review". The MacGuffin net. 
  10. ^ Carlstrom, Emily. "Modern Family S05E01-2 Recap: Suddenly, Last Summer/First Days". Better with Popcorn. Retrieved September 26, 2013. 
  11. ^ Gould, Nolan (September 25, 2013). "Did you catch the new opening credits? Everyone grew so much we had to shoot new ones!". Twitter. 
  12. ^ Tyler Ferguson, Jesse. "A lot of the ppl outside of the "court house" were our crew members, including our casting director @JeffGreenbergCD & his partner Lars". Twitter. Retrieved September 25, 2013. 
  13. ^ Gould, Nolan. "The guy behind Manny and Jay at the courthouse is our casting director @JeffGreenbergCD". Twitter. Retrieved September 25, 2013. 

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