Modern Family Is 'Startlingly Good'
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 23, 2009 4:12 PM CDT

(Newser) – ABC's Modern Family is a critics' darling, who generally think it's a clever update of the family sitcom, and one that doesn't sacrifice the tenderness we've come to expect from the classics of the genre. A sampling:

  • The series, "with its multifamily approach and semi-documentary form, redefines, updates and invigorates the family-comedy genre," writes Barry Garron in the Hollywood Reporter. It's "the obvious choice for best new fall comedy—and possibly best series."

  • Linda Holmes knows she's just joining the herd when she writes that Modern Family is a "startlingly good pilot for a network comedy." But what strikes the NPR critic most is the presence of "funny jokes. It's all well and good to play with convention and family structure and tone and sitcom convention, but if the jokes don't work, it makes absolutely no difference."
  • The family comedy is "back from the dead," writes Mary McCarthy in the Los Angeles Times. But the real coup is that "it's hard not to see yourself, or your mother, or your kids, or your sibling, reflected clearly in one scene at least, and to laugh out loud anyway."