Modern Family on ABC

2009, TV Show

Modern Family Episode: "Caught in the Act"

Season 2, Episode 13
Episode Synopsis: The Dunphy kids are in for an unpleasant surprise when they deliver breakfast in bed for Phil and Claire's anniversary. Meanwhile, Mitchell and Cameron covet a table at a hip new restaurant owned by a fellow parent (Rachael Harris) at Lily's preschool; and an e-mail may spoil a trip to Las Vegas for Jay and Gloria.
Original Air Date: Jan 19, 2011
Guest Cast Rachael Harris: Amelia
Full Episode
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Season 2, Episode 13
Paid | iTunes
Length: 21:10
Aired: 1/19/2011
Also available on Amazon Instant Video and VUDU
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Modern Family Episode Recap: "Caught in the Act" Season 2, Episode 13

Well we all saw this episode coming right? The Dunphy kids walk in on their parents "doing it," Gloria accidentally sends an abrasive e-mail to Claire, and Mitchell and Cameron use Lily to get a coveted dinner reservation.

Gloria and Jay take advantage of Manny visiting his father by planning a little trip to Vegas. Before they can leave, Gloria has to e-mail Claire about why she can't work on a school bake sale. As a joke, Jay types out verbatim what Gloria wishes she could send to Claire, detailing Claire's bossy ways and dry lemon squares, and in typical sitcom fashion, the e-mail gets sent.

Cameron and Mitchell are lamenting that no good restaurants in their neighborhood in walking distance except for Shawarma City where they do not always accommodate Mitch's requests for all white meat. Recently, the hottest restaurant in the city, Amelia's, has opened up down the street from them but it's impossible to get a reservation that's not at 5:15 ("What are we 80?") or 10:45 ("What are we 20?"). However, there is hope as the guys find out that one of Lily's classmate's mothers is Amelia. So they've scheduled a play date with Jackson and Lily so they can try to create a friendship with her.

It's Claire and Phil's anniversary so their kids have decided that in lieu of trying to think of a gift, they're giving them breakfast in bed. But when they swing the door open, without knocking, they walk in on Claire and Phil giving each other a mutual anniversary present. After a lot of screaming and tray dropping, Claire and Phil are left mortified and baffled as how to handle the situation. Claire is worried the kids are traumatized while Phil is downplaying it. Meanwhile, Alex is washing her eyes out to no avail, Haley is hyperventilating, and Luke seems simultaneously confused and well educated on the subject of sex.

Gloria is nervous about Claire reading the e-mail and insists Jay keep trying her on the phone. Finally Phil answers, but Claire will not come to the phone because she's too upset. Gloria is terrified that she is the cause of Claire's emotional distress and anger. Jay would just as well continue on to Vegas but Gloria makes him turn around and head to the Dunphys.

Jackson and Lily's play date is in full swing and Cam and Mitch are complimenting her modern and mostly white home. They are getting along famously with Amelia, played by the hilarious Rachael Harris, and a reservation seems within their grasp. Just as Amelia is about to tell them what to say next time they call the restaurant, her phone rings and she takes call in another room. As Cam and Mitch are fantasizing about "playing fast and loose" with the menu, they notice they can hear Amelia's conversation through the baby monitor, a conversation that involves screaming and threats of legal action. She returns to the play date explaining that she has to run to the restaurant and asking if the guys wouldn't mind watching Jackson. After Amelia is gone, Cam and Mitch are horrified to find that one of Lily's juice boxes has leaked out of her diaper bag and stained Amelia's white carpet.

At the Dunphy's, Phil is on the ground salvaging bits of the fallen breakfast in bed while Claire is freaking out, as usual, trying to come up with a plan to address this with the kids. Meanwhile the kids are downstairs, wondering why their parents are still sequestered in their room. They decide to leave the house, but as they are heading out the door, Gloria and Jay arrive. The kids fuel Gloria's paranoia that she has really offended Claire by explaining all the screaming and anguish that occurred earlier.

Cam and Mitch are in panic mode trying to get the stain out of the carpet. When Mitch suggests buying them a new rug Cam spews out the rug's credentials including that is costs $50,000 and there is one in Angelica Houston's or maybe Jackie Collins' house. Cam suggests they switch the rug around so that the stain is hidden under a couch.

Phil and Claire finally come downstairs where they find Gloria trying to apologize for an e-mail that Claire clearly has not read yet. Gloria's apology is inadvertently laced with sexual double entendre including references to cracking the whip, riding Phil, and tasting her cupcakes. Finally Gloria realizes what Claire and Phil are talking about and sets off to try to delete the e-mail.

The Dunphy kids are sitting at a gas station like sexiled orphans. Alex claims their parents have always been careless and irresponsible while Haley offers that it's better than having parents who fight constantly. Luke brings some perspective to the situation by telling his sisters about a friend whose parents just told him they are getting divorced. Alex and Haley admit that half of their friends have divorced parents. But they realize their biggest problem is that their parents are going to want to talk about this incident.

Back at the Dunphy's, Jay is lecturing Claire for not having a working lock on her bedroom door. When Claire reminds him that she once walked in on him and her mother Jay quickly tries to change the subject but Claire refuses to let him get away with being a hypocrite and says they should have talked to her about it. Jay obliges and begins to explain how he and Claire's mother were watching a "particularly racy episode of Heart to Heart" and Claire quickly changes her mind about talking about it.

Phil finds Gloria in the kitchen and she tries to weasel Claire's password out of him but, surprisingly, he catches on. She explains the whole situation to Phil and Claire walks in for the tail end. Jay steps in before Gloria spills her guts and lies that the e-mail contains a naked picture of Gloria.

Cam and Mitch have decided not to turn the rug because it would be dishonest. Amelia returns home and demands to know what happened. Mitch and Cam immediately blame the stain on Jackson, claiming he stole Lily's strawberry juice and then spilled it. Amelia begins to panic because Jackson is severely allergic to strawberries and could suffer from anaphylactic shock. She needs the guys' help in pinning down Jackson so she can administer an epipen. Just as she is about to stab her own son with a painful needle, Cam and Mitch come clean. Mitchell is profusely apologizing when he knocks over a vase that smashes to the ground. Cut to Cam and Mitch back at Shawarma City.

At the Dunphys, Claire and Phil are apologizing to the kids who are lined up on the couch nodding and smiling like idiots, a strategy they came up with to deal with the discomfort of the situation. In the end, the kids give their parents a door lock as an anniversary gift. Unfortunately, the lock makes a noise that alerts the entire household when Claire and Phil are about to get it on.

My picks for this episode's best lines:

Gloria: It sended! Please come back. (to the e-mail)

Haley: They're impossible to buy for. We think. We've never really tried.

Luke: Whatever it was, it looked like Dad was winning.

Luke: Did you guys notice that Dad had the same look on his face as when he smells a new car?

Haley: Don't make me regret buying you that lighter, dude.

Claire: What do we do now?
Phil: Ok, I'm really afraid of reading this situation wrong but I'm 80% sure you're coming on to me. Ok now, f-f-forty.

I have to say, not my favorite episode, not as many funny lines and the scenes with the Dunphy kids came off as really unnatural and rehearsed to me. I know it's sitcom and a heightened reality but it just seemed like a lot of time was wasted with everyone FREAKING OUT about sex when in reality, most kids as young as Luke already get the birds and bees. While it's not preferential to walk in on your parents, it's also not akin to witnessing a murder. Jay and Gloria didn't have a very interesting storyline and I was missing the funny zingers from Cam and Mitch. But this episode was still entertaining as always even if it's not in my top ten. What did you think? Leave a comment below!

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Well we all saw this episode coming right? The Dunphy kids walk in on their parents "doing it," Gloria accidentally sends an abrasive e-mail to Claire, and Mitchell and Cameron use Lily to get a coveted dinner reservation.

Gloria and Jay take advantage of Manny visiting his father by planning a little trip to Vegas. Before they can leave, Gloria has to e-mail Claire about why she can't work on a school bake sale. As a joke, Jay types out verbatim what Gloria wishes she could send to Claire, detailing Claire's bossy ways and dry lemon squares, and in typical sitcom fashion, the e-mail gets sent.

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Premiered: September 23, 2009, on ABC
Rating: TV-PG
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Premise: A mockumentary-style sitcom chronicling the unusual kinship of the extended Pritchett clan, a brood that includes patriarch Jay; his younger Latina wife, Gloria, and her son; Jay's daughter, Claire, and her family; and Jay's son, Mitchell, who lives with his partner, Cameron.

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