Tears, laughs and a lot of goodbyes marked the series finale of Modern Family on Wednesday as the family sitcom ended its 10-year and 250 episode run on ABC.
Cameron Tucker (Eric Stonestreet) got his dream job in Missouri, leading Mitchell Pritchett (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and their two kids to move away from the home they’d just bought.
The three Dunphy siblings finally flew the nest, finding places of their own and leaving their parents Claire and Phil (Julie Bowen and Ty Burrell) to plan an RV trip cross-country.
Modern Family is over! The Pritchett family say goodbye to one another during the emotional series finale as 10-year run on ABC came to an end on Wednesday night leaving fans in tears
A moment: Julie Bowen who played Claire Dunphy and Ty Burrell who portrayed her husband Phil hugging
Farewell: American television writer and producer Danny Zuker shared this sweet message as the show came to a close, a sentiment that was echoed by cast member Sofia Vergara
Jay Pritchett (Ed O’Neill) made a romantic gesture that had him reconnecting with his wife Gloria (Sophia Vergara), who’d embarked on a promising career of her own.
And in a move sure to please longtime fans, Claire and Mitchell recreated their old skating routine and found out what happened to the trophy they won all those years ago.
As the series finale opened, Claire and Phil were camping in an RV in their driveway to escape the craziness in their home, which they now shared with three kids and a pair of twins.
Their daughter Alex (Ariel Winter) had moved back in after quitting her high-end job ‘for something low-paying and ethical,’ Phil noted, as Claire grimaced.
New chapter: Sofia Vergara, who played Gloria Delgado reconnected with husband Jay Pritchett (Ed O’Neill) after he made a romantic gesture after she had embarked on a promising career of her own
Crowded house: Dylan Marshall, played by Reid Ewing, (left) stood with sisters Alex [Ariel Winter – centre] and Haley [Sarah Hyland – right] as their parents said one of their children had to move out
‘Things have devolved into total chaos,’ Claire complained, as everyone in the house was shown fighting over their lack of space, hot water, cleanliness and quiet.
Claire told the kids one of them had to move out, and they needed to decide by the end of the day.
None of them wanted to go. Alex pointed out she’d just taken a salary cut, Luke (Nolan Gould) was on a leave of absence to spend more time with family, and Haley was grappling with ‘two babies and a special-needs husband.’
RV living: Claire and Phil were living in an RV in their driveway to get some space
New job: Alex was suddenly called into her new boss’ Arven’s office, and Haley suggested to her that he might be interested in her romantically
New home: At his new home, Mitchell Pritchett [Jesse Tyler Ferguson] raved about the light, the karaoke room and the pediatrician next door
Alex was suddenly called into her new boss’ Arven’s office, and Haley suggested to her that he might be interested in her romantically, seeking to establish a relationship before she started.
In fact, he wanted to tell her their company was moving to Switzerland, if she wanted to go.
Before he explained, she stammered that she understood they might have a romantic connection, and it turned out they did, awkwardly kissing and exchanging ‘sexy’ texts.
At his new home, Mitchell raved about the light, the karaoke room and the pediatrician next door.
He and Cam loved it so much they named their baby boy ‘Rexford’ after their street.
Job offer: Cam [Eric Stonestreet] got a call from the athletic director of the University of North Central Missouri, who offered him the head coach job he’d already lost
Housewarming gift: Jay gave the couple a hideous gift for their new home: a mannequin of ‘an old-time barkeep’
Candid conversation: Cam finally told Mitchell about getting an offer for his dream job
But as they prepared to host a party, Cam got a call from the athletic director of the University of North Central Missouri, who offered him the head coach job he’d already lost.
Cam said he’d had no hard feelings about missing out on the gig, and had even sent the man who got the job ‘a bottle of congratulatory Scotch.’
‘Well, he drank it,’ the athletic director revealed. ‘Then he did a press conference where he used some colorful language to address a female reporter and blamed some things on the Jews.’
Cam was offered the job, and had to decide if he wanted it that day, but he kept it from Mitchell, only telling their friend Ronaldo (Christian Barillas), who spilled it to everyone.
Jay gave the couple a hideous gift for their new home: a mannequin of ‘an old-time barkeep.’
Makeover opportunity: Mitchell later came to terms with the move, as did his daughter Lily (Aubrey Anderson-Emmons), who planned to dye her hair blue and get ‘an emotional support pig’
‘Dad, this is exactly what we needed, a little whimsy!’ Mitchell exclaimed.
Since the figure was rotund like Cam and redheaded like Mitchell, Jay dubbed it ‘Kitsch,’ combining the men’s names—and Mitchell loved it.
‘Great, now Mitchell’s even happier,’ Cam worried. ‘I’m gonna die in this house.’
Mitchell told everyone how happy he was, joking that he only wished he could get Cam to ‘give up hogging the covers.’
More to say: Fans took to social media in their droves to react to the poignant series finale with many writing about how moved they were about it
‘Cause I haven’t given up enough for you!’ Cam blurted.
He told Mitchell about the job, leading his husband to say, ‘This is my chance to be there for you. I don’t care where we live, as long as you’re there by my side.’
Their guests swooned, and Claire told Mitchell his words were beautiful, to which he replied, ‘Well, everyone was looking at me. What the f*** was I supposed to say?’
Mitchell later came to terms with the move, as did his daughter Lily (Aubrey Anderson-Emmons), who planned to dye her hair blue and get ‘an emotional support pig.’
Group hug: One of the show’s stars, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, shared a photo of one of the TV family’s group hugs, adding, ‘Wish I could hug my family in real life tonight’
Last goodbye: Sofia Vergara shared the same snapshot from the last day of filming Modern Family in wake of series’ finale
Audition: There were also a few celebs who chimed in, including The Office star Kate Flannery, who mentioned that Eric Stonestreet had originally auditioned to play Kevin Malone, which was played by Brian Baumgartner on The Office
Larry speaks: Larry King added, ‘Congratulations to our favorite #ModernFamily. Thanks for all the great laughs and I’m so glad you’ll be there for us in syndication! You guys are the best!’
Thanks: The Modern Family twitter shared the final shot, revealing, ‘And just like that, we say farewell to #ModernFamily. Thanks for watching!’
Grown: The Modern Family Twitter also shared a photo of the cast from the first season and another from the final season, showing how much everyone has grown
The couple sang Diana Ross’ and Lionel Richie’s Endless Love to commemorate the moment, just as their drunk friend Sal (Elizabeth Banks) poked her head around the corner.
‘You guys cook, right?’ she cooed. ‘Cause my gummy’s kickin’ in!’
At her house, Gloria told Jay she felt like no one needed her now that she had a new career as a real-estate agent.Jay swore everyone still needed her, telling her not to feel guilty as it was her time to shine.
Claire and Phil came home to learn that all of their kids were moving out: Alex, to Switzerland, Haley and Dylan to a new apartment, and Luke to school at the University of Oregon.
As the finale moved into its second part, Cam and Mitchell said goodbye to their whole family at the Dunphy’s house, with Claire lamenting the loss of her ‘old skating partner,’ her brother.
Good friend: Cam and Mitchell’s drunk friend Sal (Elizabeth Banks) poked her head around the corner as they celebrated their decision to move
Still needed: Jay swore to Gloria that everyone still needed her, telling her not to feel guilty as it was her time to shine
Jay showed up to tell Cam he couldn’t miss their departure, adding, ‘Both of my sons are leaving,’ which prompted everyone to cluster in a giant group hug.
But a tornado delayed their flight by two hours, giving the family more time together.
Gloria and her son Joe (Jeremy Maguire) were heading to Colombia for the summer, Manny (Rico Rodriguez) was going on to pursue ‘adventures’ in the film industry, and Phil was planning to attend a tumbling conference called ‘Churning Man.’
Just as Cam and Mitchell went to leave, they heard there were flood warnings in Missouri, while a flight of locusts had been spotted in the flight path.
‘What part of the Old Testament are we moving to?’ Mitchell asked.
They finally left, then heard the family taking a photo and stormed back in, only to get a phone notification that hail now prevented their flight, and they wouldn’t leave until 9 p.m.
Film industry: Gloria and her son Joe (Jeremy Maguire) were heading to Colombia for the summer, while Manny (Rico Rodriguez) was going on to pursue ‘adventures’ in the film industry
Family picture: Mitchell and Cam after leaving came back and found their family taking a group picture without them
Prized trophy: As they waited, Claire told Mitchell he still had their old skating trophy, and Jay corrected them, saying their mom had donated it to the skating rink
Breaking in: Claire and Mitchell worked together to steal back their trophy
As they waited, Claire told Mitchell he still had their old skating trophy, and Jay corrected them, saying their mom had donated it to the skating rink.
The siblings went to the rink, stole the trophy, and recreated their old skating routine to Duran Duran’s Hungry Like the Wolf.
‘This is more sexual than I remember it being,’ Mitchell cringed.
As Alex and Haley packed their rooms, they pulled one last prank on Luke, tricking him into recreating his role as ‘Woofie,’ a dog he’d played when he was six.
They hosed him down, dragged him on a leash and beat him with paper towel rolls, but ultimately realized how much they would miss him, and each other.
Gloria worried that Jay was losing his hearing or depressed, as he would often stare into space.
Old routine: Mitchell and Claire treated viewers to their old skating routine to the Duran Duran song Hungry Like The Wolf
Dog role: As Alex and Haley packed their rooms, they pulled one last prank on Luke, tricking him into recreating his role as ‘Woofie,’ a dog he’d played when he was six
Big sisters: Alex and Haley abused their little brother one last time
Close bond: The siblings afterward did not want to leave each other
Concerned, Phil found Jay lying down in a bedroom, listening through earbuds to a Spanish lesson that had him asking a waiter for a ‘spoon.’
‘Whatever you need, buddy,’ Phil answered, snuggling him.
Jay leapt up, startled, as an embarrassed Phil apologized and began to leave.
He told Phil he’d been learning Spanish for Gloria, and forgave him, noting, ‘Today can’t be easy for you, either. Maybe start thinking what you want your next chapter to be.’
Cam confronted Gloria in the kitchen with a goodbye note he hoped would bring her to tears, but instead she thought about how much she would miss Manny.
She gave her son a goodbye note while he took a bath, and then handcuffed him to its faucet.
Checking in: Phil was worried about Jay and checked in on him
Bathroom handcuff: Manny was handcuffed to the tub by his mother Gloria after she gave him a goodbye note
Phil found Claire standing in an empty bedroom, reminiscing about their early days as the kids walked in and out.
‘It’s pretty much 25 years of uninterrupted crazy, and then when it ends, it ends,’ she observed.
‘Until our next chapter,’ Phil suggested, proposing an RV trip across the U.S. to take ‘selfies with all the major baseball mascots.’
Claire cried as they departed the room, saying, ‘They’re really leaving. What do we do?’
‘What people have always done,’ Phil replied. ‘Leave the porch light on. They come back.’
Luke and Manny said goodbye, with Luke asking, ‘How come you never wrote a poem for me?’
Empty room: Claire and Phil got emotional as they stood in an empty room of their house
Poetry talk: Luke and Manny said goodbye, with Luke asking, ‘How come you never wrote a poem for me?’ and Manny replying they were all for him
‘They were all for you!’ Manny insisted, hugging him.
Gloria confronted Jay, wondering what was wrong with him, and he answered her in Spanish. She was delighted to find out he’d been learning Spanish to go to Colombia with her that summer.
‘You’ve been staring at my family for 12 years,’ Jay said. ‘Least I can do is stare at yours for one summer.’
The family gathered for a last photo, which had everyone in tears.
‘Why is this so hard?’ Gloria asked. ‘We’ve done this like seven times already today.’
Spanish lessons: Gloria confronted Jay, wondering what was wrong with him, and he answered her in Spanish
Whole family: The whole family gathered for a picture before going their separate ways
‘It’s hard because not everybody gets to have what we have,’ Jay explained.
‘Mitchell, I put the skating trophy in your suitcase,’ Claire told her brother. ‘I want you to have it first so I know you’ll come back.’
Phil wept as he said, ‘I’m gonna set an example and be the first one to let go.’
Second later he threw his arms around his family again, admitting, ‘It was awful.’
As the show closed, Cam, Mitchell and the kids were on the plane, Haley and Dylan moved into the couple’s old home, Phil and Claire wrote their RV plans on the calendar, and Jay and Gloria attended Joe’s soccer game.
‘Life is full of change, some big, some small,’ Jay said in voiceover. ‘I learned a long time ago you can fight it, or you can try to make the best of it. And that’s a whole lot easier if you’ve got people helping you face whatever life throws at you. At least that’s what helps me sleep at night.’
With that, all three families shut off the lights at their home, although Phil and Claire turned their porchlight back on.
Big hug: The family members had a hard time letting go of each other
Social media went wild at the end of the show with @XTineBigHouse writing that she was ‘sobbing’ while thanking the show, ‘for so many years of laughter.’
Others said: ‘What part of the Old Testament are we moving to?” These lines are killing me!’ said @kikabelle, referring to one of Mitch’s lines about moving to Missouri.
Another fan, @anwarr__s added, ‘I love how Haley and Dylan moved into Cam and Mitch’s house.’
‘@RDin1114 reacted to one particular line, which appeared to be a subtle jab at President Trump – ‘I shouldn’t be penalized for being smart. I’m not running for President.’
Towards the end of the episode, one of the more poignant moments was when Luke asked Manny why he never wrote a poem for him, and Manny revealed they were ‘all for him.
@BlackMermaid34 shared, ‘Omg Manny telling Luke all his poems was for him. I can’t right now,’ along with a GIF of Emma Stone crying and eating ice cream.
The same user also reacted to another touching moment, when the hardened Jay (Ed O’Neill) said he was said that both of his sons were leaving, referring to both Cam and Mitch.
Others like @realAdamStrang praised Modern Family for being, ‘the one show that my entire family will sit around and watch together.
@CassyRodgers20 said it was one of ‘the best series finales,’ adding that the cast and crew, ‘did it well.’
Lights out: All three families shut off the lights at their home, although Phil and Claire turned their porchlight back on as the series concluded
Despite the hugely successful show coming to an end, there’s already talk of a spin-off among the show’s creative team.
Co-creators Steve Levitan and Christopher Lloyd weighed in on the subject in an interview with Deadline posted the same evening.
Though both executive producers weren’t ready to move forward with a spin-off, they though Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet’s couple seemed the most likely to work on its own.
The two were asked about Mitchell (Ferguson) and Cameron (Stonestreet) moving to Missouri at the end of the series, and whether that gave them an opportunity for their own show.
‘I’m personally not thinking about that,’ Levitan said, after rejecting the idea that Cameron and Mitchell had long been considered for a spin-off.
But even if Levitan wasn’t on that beat, other Modern Family writers were.
Just an idea: Modern Family co-creators Steve Levitan and Christopher Lloyd said they were considering a spin-off for Cameron (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and Mitchell (Eric Stonestreet), according to Deadline
‘I think that there are a couple of writers who are thinking about well, is there a Mitch and Cam spinoff, but they’re literally just thinking about it. They’re using this time that we have now to think about it, if there’s something there.’
‘I’m not driving this but I’m a huge fan of Jesse and Eric, and those characters are of course near and dear to me, and I certainly think that they’re strong enough to carry a show,’ he continued.
Even if he was interested in their spin-off, Levitan had trouble concentrating on the same batch of characters.
‘For me, I really felt that what I needed creatively was to work on something new after working on Modern Family for 12 years and pretty much exclusively.’
Lloyd also seemed to be a fan of a possibly Mitchell and Cameron series, and he explained the choice to have the married couple moved to Missouri at the end of the show.
‘We wanted to have them off on a new journey, and it seemed symmetrical to have Mitchell follow Cam some place and maybe be around Cam’s family because Cam had played that role in Mitchell’s life for the last 11 years.
Empty: Jesse Tyler Ferguson led the stars commemorating Modern Family’s last day of filming which was in February
‘Cam had this opportunity to do something wonderful and exciting, Mitchell felt okay, that makes my obligation to let him chase his dream, and I will go with him and see what that life is like for me,’ he said.
Though he was pleas with the idea of a Mitchell and Cameron spin-off, Lloyd was as cautious as his partner.
‘Will that happen? I’m not sure but we would be probably dumb to not explore it. However, doing a spinoff is fraught in a lot of ways and we won’t do it unless we feel confident there’s something there, I don’t want to say it’s a long shot, it’s under discussion but we’ll see. We don’t want to jump into something like that, particularly because Modern Family is a tough act to follow, but that is a possibility,’ he said.
The show started modestly in 2009, and has gone on to practically reinvent the family sitcom from the ground up, winning over 20 Primetime Emmys and a Golden Globe along the way.
Modern Family’s last day of filming was on February , and cast members took to Instagram at the time to share some amazing images marking the final time the Dunphys, Tucker-Pritchetts, and Pritchett-Delgados all got together in front of the camera.
Aww: He also posted a sweet snap in which he and his onscreen husband, played by Eric Stonestreet, flanked members of the show’s crew and creative team along with their on-screen daughter played by Aubrey Anderson-Emmons
Images of empty sets, final fittings and throwback moments to the series’ pilot script all underscored the bittersweet feeling that the cast and crew seemed to share as they brought the Modern Family era in their careers to a close.
Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who played Mitchell Pritchett in all 250 episodes over the show’s 11 seasons, took a selfie seated cross-legged in the empty set that stood in for one of the families’ houses.
Posting it on the eve of the show’s last day of production, Ferguson shared an emotional J.M. Barrie quote as the beginning of his caption: ‘”Never say goodbye because goodbye means going away and going away means forgetting.”
Love: Sofia threw her arms around her co-star and onscreen husband Ed O’Neill, [Jay Pritchett]
‘Tomorrow is the last day of shooting @abcmodernfam,’ Jesse had said.
‘Thank you to all of our fans. It’s been a great 11 years & 250 episodes.’
He also posted a sweet snap in which he and his onscreen husband, played by Eric Stonestreet, flanked members of the show’s crew and creative team along with their on-screen daughter played by Aubrey Anderson-Emmons.
‘With one of our bosses (and @abcmodernfam co-creator) Chris Lloyd and our Emmy Award winning director @gail_mancuso after our final shot at the Dunphy house,’ Ferguson captioned the snap.
Stonestreet also posted a shot of the interior Jesse had posed in, this time with two empty chairs in the foreground.
‘Almost done. 1 more day of filming and just one more g’bye video after this. #modernfamily #season11 #thefinalseason #imgonnamissthis’ Eric captioned the snap.
Aww: Nolan ‘Luke Dunphy’ Gould also got in on the emotional sharing, posting significant moments from the last day to his IG Story
Vergara, who played Ed O’Neill’s onscreen wife Gloria, also documented several meaningful moments from the show’s final shoots, including their last on-location shoot and last on-set production.
‘Taking as much pictures as we can to remember this last week of Modern Family [heart emojis] ‘ Vergara captioned a suite of two pictures in which she posed with fellow cast mates and crew members.
Nolan ‘Luke Dunphy’ Gould also got in on the emotional sharing, posting significant moments from the last day to his IG Story.
He displayed a shot of height measurements taken of him and Ariel Winter, who played his onscreen sister Alex, that appear on a doorway of the Dunphy home.
He also took an interesting shot of the sound stage on the ABC Studios lot (part of Disney), Stage 5, where Modern Family has called home for the last 11 years — with previous ‘tenants’ including LA Law, The X-Files and many classic old films.
Legend: He also took an interesting shot of the sound stage on the ABC Studios lot (part of Disney), Stage 5, where Modern Family has called home for the last 11 years