Modern Family Recap: Career Day

This week on Modern Family: Phil speaks at Luke’s class’ Career Day; “The Tooth Fairy” accidentally gives Lily a one hundred dollar bill; and Jay attempts to be a writer.

As you might have guessed, Phil is super pumped to speak at Luke’s school for Career Day. His dad did it when he was a kid, and he managed to make running a grocery store interesting (CLAIRE: I bet that produced a lot of laughs!), so Phil is determined to make realty seem like the best field ever. He even taped a “younger” version of himself asking questions at timed intervals, so he could have a multimedia presentation interacting with the TV. While a lot of Phil’s schemes are harebrained or over-the-top, I actually thought this would have been cute. The kids seemed to be buying into it, and Luke looked like he was proud of his dad. So it made me mad when (dun-dun-dun!) Gil Thorpe, realtor rival extraordinaire (you remember, Rob Riggle?) shows up in that same classroom, where apparently his daughter is a student as well. Thorpe thwarts Phil’s presentation by throwing off his timing and waxing on about how great of a realtor Thorpe is, and Phil leaves in humiliation.

Did I mention there were Gil pickles? Oy. I mean, I love puns, but Claire already had that “produce” line, and Gil pickles seem a tad unrealistic. Moving on.

At the last minute, the teacher requests Claire get up there and speak about being a full-time mom. She does a pretty good job explaining how being a homemaker is a bunch of jobs in one: chauffeur, chef, etc., but some annoying little heckling girl calls her out for not truly pursuing her career goals. In a moment that I feel has been a long time coming, Claire freaks out.

Gil Thorpe notices, and after class, he makes her an offer to come work on one of his projects. Claire’s all too excited to get back in the game, despite the fact that she knows she’s dealing with her husband’s competitor. Phil unsuccessfully tries to veto the idea, and sure enough, Thorpe calls him to crassly discuss how excited he is to have Phil’s wife “working under” him and bending across his desk . . .

Anyway, Claire hates working there—strangely enough, not because of sexual harassment—but because she felt “like a servant,” and she quits by the end of the episode. So, glad we wrote off Claire having a career.

Meanwhile, Lily loses a tooth, and Modern Family has to write an episode about gay men playing fairies without any hacky fairy jokes. Cam accidentally slipped Lily 100 bucks, and the guys have to figure out how to delicately get it back without crushing her dreams. When a simple note from the Tooth Fairy saying it was a mistake doesn’t work, they employ Haley to dress up in costume and nicely ask Lily for the money back.

Lily calls their bluff, and it looks like all is lost. But Haley convinces the kid to give it back because otherwise Santa will put her on the naughty list. Not because it’s the right thing to do, but because it will ultimately benefit Lily in the end regardless. Lesson half-learned, I guess.

And finally, Jay makes the mistake of telling Gloria he would’ve wanted to have been a writer, but “life got in the way.” “Life” being her. So Gloria sits Jay down at the typewriter he bought for himself (!) and tells him to go ahead, life’s not stopping him. Jay has terrible writers’ block until Manny helps him. AKA until Manny writes the whole thing. When Gloria finally reads the draft, she critically gives what I assume are the MF writers’ inside jokes about studio/network notes on television shows:

“He doesn’t seem very good at his job.”

“Does it have to be a cell phone?”

“What if he were a robot?”

Manny, you’d better finish that story.

Photos: ABC’s Modern Family

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