TITLE: MODERN FAMILY - THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON (BLU-RAY) (DVD)
Release Date: September 18, 2012 (20th Century Fox Home Entertainment)
Color / 2011-2012
MSRP: $49.98 (DVD)/$59.99 (Blu-ray)
Packaging: Keep case
Number of Discs: 3
Number of Episodes: 24
Running Time: 515 minutes
Running Time of Features: approx. 79 minutes
Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
Subtitles and Captioning: English, Spanish, French Subtitles
* Deleted and Alternate Scenes
* Destination Wyoming Featurette
* A Day on the Set with Ty
* Adventures of the Modern Family Kids Featurette
* A Modern Family Christmas Featurette
* Driving Lessons Featurette
* Ed O’Neill Gets a Star
* Modern Family Goes to Disneyland Resort Featurette
* Gag Reel
Join TV's #1 family for another hilarious and refreshingly original season of Modern Family, winner of sixteen Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Comedy Series for three years straight! As the extended Pritchett/Dunphy clan faces an uproariously unpredictable array of family vacations, holiday hassles, troublesome in-laws, and surprising secrets, they still somehow manage to thrive together as one big, loving family - even as they drive each other absolutely insane! Season Three features a hilarious gag reel and never-before-seen couch confessions that will make you laugh out loud and remind you why viewers and critics alike have fallen in love with this thoroughly Modern Family.
The three-disc set from 20th Century Fox contains all 24 second season episodes in their unedited format, along with plenty of bonus features. The series airs Wednesdays at 9:00 PM on ABC and stars Ed O'Neill as Jay Pritchett, Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy, Ty Burrell as Phil Dunphy, Sofía Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett, Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell Pritchett, Eric Stonestreet as Cameron Tucker, Sarah Hyland as Haley Dunphy, Nolan Gould as Luke Dunphy, Ariel Winter as Alex Dunphy , Rico Rodriguez as Manny Delgado and Aubrey Anderson-Emmons as Lily Tucker-Pritchett. Recurring is Reid Ewing as Dylan and Brigitte the Dog as Stella.
This is hands down still the best sitcom on the air right now. The series continues to grow in the ratings and is critically acclaimed. The season premiere for season three hit a series high with a 6.1 adults 18-49 rating for the two-episode season premiere. I love all 72 total episodes so far for seasons one through three and these 24 third season episodes are all very good. It maybe isn’t as good as season two but it still is the best comedy out there and it appeals to everyone. We will cover the best of the best for season 3! The season premiere “Dude Ranch,” where while vacationing at Lost Creek Ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, the three families try their hands at a little cattle herding, skeet shooting and horseback riding and there are also some big firsts, a huge surprise, and an actual face-off between Jay and a cowboy named Hank (Tim Blake Nelson). On the second episode of the season premiere, “When Good Kids Go Bad,” Mitchell and Cameron plan an evening with the whole family to break the happy news that they're attempting to adopt another child, however things go poorly when they realize that Lily may not take well to another baby in the house, meanwhile Claire and Jay are each focused on proving a point. In “Hit and Run,” Phil and Claire's encounter with an annoying city councilman (David Cross) on the campaign trail gets Claire thinking about throwing her hat into the ring, meanwhile Gloria's offers for help fall on deaf ears with Jay, who's frustrated at work, and Manny, who's worried about school and Mitchell and Cameron have a hit-and-run fender bender that leads to a confrontation with a kid who's bothering Haley.
In “Egg Drop,” Jay and Claire take control of their kids' school projects from Manny and Luke, while Haley and Gloria help Phil with a real estate presentation as Cam and Mitchell meet with a potential birth mother. In “Little Bo Bleep,” Claire prepares for her debate with Duane Bailey, while Mitch and Cam try to clean up Lily's language before her turn as a flower girl and Jay blames Stella's strange behavior on Gloria. In the next episode, “Me? Jealous?” Claire believes that Phil's new prospective client is inappropriate, but she cannot convince a trusting Phil, while Cam and Mitchell stay with Gloria and Jay as their house is being fumigated. On the episode “Election Day,” the family does some last-minute campaigning for Claire, as Claire experiences technical difficulties during interviews. In “Disneyland,” when the family travels to Disneyland, Phil struggles to keep up with Luke, while Claire is stunned when they run into Dylan and Cam and Mitch must curb Lily's new penchant for running. On the excellent season finale, “Bayby on Board,” while Gloria helps Cam and Mitch pursue an adoption opportunity, Jay and Manny baby-sit Lily, while Alex attends her first prom and Haley makes a shocking announcement about her plans for the future, to move in with Dylan and Gloria reveals a bombshell.
Guest starring this season is David Cross as Duane Bailey, Gilles Marini, Leslie Mann, Chaz Palminteri, Tim Blake Nelson, Jennifer Tilly, Kevin Hart, Josh Gad, Benjamin Bratt, Philip Baker Hall, Greg Kinnear, Ernie Hudson, Kali Rocha, Ellen Barkin, and Bobby Cannavale.
All of the episodes on the set are unedited and presented as they originally aired instead of produced, which is fine. All music appears to be intact as well, but this show doesn’t use too much of that. Runtimes are as follows:
Dude Ranch (21:36)
When Good Kids Go Bad (21:16)
Phil on Wire (21:22)
Door to Door (21:23)
Hit and Run (21:36)
Go Bullfrogs! (21:33)
After the Fire (21:19)
Punkin Chunkin (21:33)
Express Christmas (21:19)
Lifetime Supply (21:33)
Egg Drop (21:38)
Little Bo Bleep (21:15)
Me? Jealous? (21:18)
Aunt Mommy (21:38)
Virgin Territory (21:38)
Leap Day (21:34)
Send out the Clowns (21:31)
Election Day (21:36)
The Last Walt (21:37)
Planes, Trains, and Cars (20:51)
Tableau Vivant (21:33)
Baby on Board (21:33)
We’re reviewing the Blu-ray, so the sections here are on out might be different from the DVD. The Blu-ray packaging has a keep case. The cover art has a nice shot of the Dunphys in black, and then we have the Modern Family logo and Complete Third Season mention, followed by a shot of the Pritchetts in elegant white clothing. Once again all that is on a white background. Since this is a Blu-ray set, we have a blue case instead of regular clear or black. The back of the packaging we have a nice family portrait on the wall. We have basic information on the series and set, along with a list of special features and Blu-ray Specifications. This is “Emmy-Winning Laughs In High Definition!”
Inside the case we have a little blue (since this is a Blu-ray!) plastic holder that you can flip back and forth like a page of a book. The holder holds disc one on the front and disc two on the back. Disc three is on the right panel on the case. As for artwork on the panels, we have a shot of a couch stretching on both panels. We also have a disc-by-disc breakdown with all the episode titles and special features listed. There is also an insert where you can win a Modern Family Home Makeover. As for disc artwork, each disc has different pose of Stella the dog. Disc 1 has a yellow background and contains episodes 1-9, Disc 2 has a gray background and contains episodes 10-18, and Disc 3 has an orange background and contains episodes 19-24. Each disc has some extras.
Menu Design and Navigation:
The menus are very nicely done, with the show logo then video clips playing on the main menu with the theme song playing in the background, similar to previous sets. As a reminder, this review will cover the Blu-ray menus. The Blu-ray main menu has options of Episodes, Set Up, Search, and Extras. The Episodes option gives us two options: Season Mode and Play. Season Mode is like Play All on DVDs, but this is better because you’ll never lose your spot even if you remove the disc from the player. Play of course plays the episode. We get the episode title and a nice description. The Set Up option lets you turn on subtitles either in English, French, or Spanish. The Search option is a nice Blu-ray only option where you can view your Timelines and Bookmarks. The Extra option list the special feature on the disc that you can select. Blu-ray DVDs have no sub-menus, so we can’t cover that. I like Blu-ray, as everything is much better quality and faster. Five chapter stops are placed appropriately throughout each episode, yo. Phil Dunphy, yo! There are auto trailers before the main menu on disc one for Twentieth Century Fox series on DVD.
Video and Audio Quality:
I had the DVD version for season one, but as of season two, I have had the Blu-rays and all I can say it is so worth it! The video and audio quality on the set is perfection in true high-definition quality. 50 GB Dual Layer! It is probably even better than watching it on TV on HD. I don’t think I have ever seen a set look better than this! The audio is presented in 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and is very crisp and clear. As mentioned, subtitles are available on all of the episodes, but the episodes are not closed-captioned again I think. Why? I don’t get it either. Also as we noted, there are 5 chapter stops per episode.
Once again each disc has “Extras.” Although, I’m still very surprised there aren’t ANY audio commentaries again for the second straight set. Let’s go over the extras. We will cover them how they are presented on Blu-ray. First up on disc one, we have “Deleted and Alternate Scenes” (6:28). We have 7 scenes (one each from production #303, #302, #301, #304, #308, #309, #305). The next extra on disc one is “Destination Wyoming” (9:42). We go behind the scenes of the Wyoming episode, which aired as the season premiere. We start inside the airplane on their way to Wyoming even! Interviewed are Steve Levitan (executive producer), Eric Stonestreet, Mark Barron (Mayor of Jackson Hole), Ariel Winter, Rico Rodriguez, Jason Winer (director), Brad Walsh (executive producer), Paul Corrigan (executive producer), Reid Ewing, and Matthew Gumley (Jimmy Scrivano). The next extra on disc one is “A Day on the Set with Ty” (5:36). We follow Ty around on the episode “Election Day” and we see what his day is like! Interviewed are Ty Burrell, Bryan Cranston (director), and Julie Bowen. Finally on disc one, we have “Adventures of the Modern Family Kids” (3:33). We see what the kids were doing on location in Jackson Hole, Wyoming! Featured are Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, Rico Rodriguez, Ariel Winter, and Nolan Gould. They were doing a lot of adventurous things, wow! Who knew Aubrey Anderson-Emmons is so adventurous!
Moving on to disc two, we have more “Deleted and Alternate Scenes” (8:56). We have 12 scenes (one from production #311, four from production #312, three from production #313, and four from production #315). Next up we have “A Modern Family Christmas” (5:58). We are given a behind the scenes look at the classic episode “Express Christimas” as director Michael Spiller gives us the details. Interviewed are Michael Spiller (director), Rico Rodriguez, and Tom Mertz (special effects). Then we have “Driving Lessons” (2:53). Interviewed are Rico Rodriguez and Nolan Gould, as we get a behind the scenes look at the episode “Virgin Territory” as Manny tries to impress a girl by driving by. Finally on this disc we have “Ed O’Neill Gets a Star” (16:43). We see highlights from this glorious day for Ed! Interviewed at the ceremony are Ed O’Neill, Leron Gubler (President & CEO, Hollywood Chamber of Commerce), Steve Levitan, Katey Sagal, Sofia Vergara, and Tom LaBonge (council member).
Onto the final disc, disc three, we have “Deleted and Alternate Scenes” (7:12). We have 9 scenes (one from production #320, three from production #321, one from production #322, two from production #323, and two from production #324). Next up we have “Modern Family Goes to Disneyland Resort” (3:10). Interviewed at Disneyland are Steve Levitan, Ariel Winter, Rico Rodriguez, Nolan Gould, Eric Stonestreet, and Reid Ewing. Finally we have a nicely produced “Gag Reel” (8:55) that is a bit longer than the second season set! Their bloopers are even interesting to watch.
I have the Blu-ray once again, and I as I said on the season two review, I don’t think I’ll ever go back to DVD for this series now. I’m sure the DVD is nice, but this Blu-ray set is just amazing. Everything is the same but the audio/video is amazing in Blu-ray. The episodes are all awesome and have never looked better. Like seasons one and two, I don’t think there was a bad episode in the bunch here. Yes, probably not as good as those seasons but this is still the best comedy. You need to watch all 24 if you haven’t already. The episodes are stand-alone, so you can watch what you want first, but I still prefer watching them all in order. The packaging was nicely done and nearly flawless, and my wish for more artwork happened. We didn’t have any artwork on the panels for season two, but now we do in season three. Menu navigation and design was very simple and well done (love the theme music!). Blu-ray menus are a different animal! The audio and video were perfect as you can’t beat a current series and of course this is Blu-ray. I loved the special features. It is nice to have deleted and alternate scenes but those family interviews were missing this time. I think they just combined that into the deleted scenes, though. Again, audio commentary was just about the only relevant type of extra missing.
Anyway, this is a great Blu-ray set for an even better show! The fourth season launches on ABC this week. Make sure you catch-up with any episode you need to and get ready for that premiere! So laugh on with ABC’s Modern Family and sing “don’t go breakin’ my heart” like Cam. If you still haven’t watched this show yet, you really need to. It is by far the best comedy on TV these days and it has clever writing, stories and of course the acting is top-notch. Critics and viewers both come together for this show. TV’s funniest show returns this week, but don’t forget to relive the funny in season three as well by buying this Blu-ray set! Laughs are funnier in high-definition! If you don’t have Blu-ray, “oh geez,” as Jay would say, but you can still buy the DVD...which is good, too! Hurry, before someone announces they’re pregnant...
Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)
Video Quality: 5/5
Audio Quality: 5/5
Special Features: 4/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4.5/5
Overall Score: 4.5/5
-- Reviewed by Pavan on 09/26/12
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