The Musical Man

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Comedy/Romance/, USA, 2011, 30 min.

Synopsis Claire (Julie Bowen) has become a star, at least as far as Horizon Realty says. Phil (Ty Burrell) had the idea of taking a picture of his family and having it printed on the side of the minivan. ("Now all the driving your Mom does will serve a purpose!") And every bus bench in the city will now say "I can't be satisfied until you're satisfied." (The best thing about this show is you already know where this is going but you still want to see it.) But here's a little curveball for Phil and Claire: Haley (Sarah Hyland) is actually an average student! At least her ACT scores say that, but Alex (Ariel Winter) assures her it's just a fluke and she can retake them again. Phil and Claire couldn't be happier Haley could now get into a good school, except she thinks she is going to skip the whole college thing.ALEX: Well, we took the scenic route, but we ended up in the same place.Speaking of opportunities, Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) was now the new musical director for the Franklin Middle School musical, after the regular director suddenly became ill...right around the time Cameron got sick, too. Weird, right? Cameron is going to take the school on a musical trip around the world. Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson), as you might suspect, is less than enthusiastic.MITCHELL: Cam, it's sometimes you can be a little over-enthusiastic.CAMERON: Is it really that big of a deal that I want this to be the best show in the world?Mitch tries to play nice and support Cam, even with an original song-and-dance number the kids have to learn by tonight.Jay (Ed O'Neill) has learned to use his smartphone, or at least use it to take a picture of his butt and program that to come up whenever his brother, Donnie (Jonathan Banks) , calls him. Gloria (Sofía Vergara) is not all that enthused. And when Jay wants to pull the prank on Donnie but doesn't get his phone out, the two wrestle to the ground and break things. Gloria was desperate to remind herself why she married Jay in the first place.At the play, a bit of a rivalry has developed between Manny (Rico Rodriguez) and Luke (Nolan Gould) over a pretty girl, Emma. Only Manny is the only one in competition, because Luke is just acting goofy and Emma's liking it, much to Manny's dismay. The kids, you might expect, aren't happy with Cameron's obsessiveness, and one of them wants to leave for soccer practice. Cam reminds him the cast of Rent never went to soccer practice and they have a Tony. (LUKE: We have a Tony) And Emma thinks pointing Tony out is hysterical.Claire and Haley have to go drive the van somewhere, but Claire was too preoccupied with Haley not wanting to go to college to notice the printers may have wanted to think twice about how they did the picture. Claire is all by herself on the side of the van with the words "I Can't Be Satisfied," while Haley is by herself on the other side of the van with the words "Let me make your dreams come true"...and the phone number.CLAIRE: (still hasn't seen the sign) Your father's not just selling houses; he's selling us.HALEY: What will my friends think?CLAIRE: They'll just think you're helping your father put food on the table.While Gloria tries to figure out why Jay considers himself getting closer to his brother by sabotaging his scotch and not knowing Donnie was a grandfather, Haley and Claire are getting quite a bit of honking from the other drivers. Claire's tired of it and tells one of them to just call the number! Jay finally relents and talks to Donnie over pool. Donnie really doesn't want to talk. Besides, the doctors caught it early and he got the treatment, so he was fine for the moment. Donnie wrongly assumed his wife called Jay and told him he had prostate cancer. But Donnie wanted it kept quiet. Jay was so quiet about it, he forgot about the chair he sabotaged for Donnie to spill his drink...the hard way.Claire tries to convinve Haley all of the advantages of college (skipping the fact you make about $20,000 per year more with a college degree than a high school diploma; that's all it took for our a few not-so-veiled threats). A very convincing argument (try this with your kids) is that college is a time when the whole world is ahead of you and you get that excited/scared feeling you can never, EVER, get back. (Would have been nice if I had gotten it, and I went to college, too.)Back at home, Phil is ecstatic about all of the messages he's gotten. Of course, he hasn't listened to a single one. But then the first one comes. Let's listen in.PHIL: You saw the ad? Great! Do you know which one you're looking for? The little one? I think I know which one you're talking about, but if you're interested, I also have an older one with a lot of character. Well, I think the carpeting matches the drapes; I haven't checked in a while. Both of them? Wow. But I guess that makes sense if you're planning to flip one. Well, why don't I call you back, and it will give me a chance to give both of them a good scrubbing.Of course, it would have helped if Alex had shown him the picture of the van her friend just sent her.PHIL: (figures it out) I guess I'll be seeing you Wednesdays and every other weekend.Phil immediately calls Claire, who sounds very upset. But she's upset about college and life passing her by, so he has a temporary reprieve.At the school, Mitchell is supporing Cam by bringing him some PB&J (Pear, Brie, and Jambon!), but Manny talks to Mitch on the side about Cameron driving everyone crazy. ("Reuben hasn't had a bowel movement in a week! Don't laugh! That's how Elvis died") Mitch doesn't want to betray Cam, but he tells Manny to bring up any concerns he may be having. And Manny does by chewing out Bob Fussy. And Cam reacted exactly the way you'd think: by going crazy. He introduced this kids to the greats: Bernstein, Sondheim. ("Years from now, some of these kids will still be talking about how I Sondeim-ized them!") And Cameron refuses to go back to the old musical.Phil intercepts Claire and gets her away from the van. She asks if her best years are behind her, and he assures her the trick is to keep looking forward. Cam looks enthused to start the musical. And Luke is all up in the air about it...literally. He can't get down from the wires again. And Donnie wasn't done playing practical jokes on Jay, like taping his mobile phone shut and calling it or giving him a Wet Willie. Now Gloria's mad at both of them, but Jay tells her to calm down because Donnie has cancer. That did NOT calm her down, and Donnie was quite upset. Lucky for Phil, he didn't see Luke still caught on the wires or Jay and Gloria arguing in the audience, as he was outside with a razor trying to get the ad off of his van. Donnie is mad at Jay for treating him with kid gloves since telling him he had cancer. And he wanted to get away from home to avoid that treatment. Jay wanted to make sure Donnie knew he cared about him, but Donnie had known that since they were kids and Jay beat up the kid who took Donnie's bicycle.The kids have given up on the musical, especially since Emma had to be put on the injured list after her Joan of Arc role didn't go as planned. And Luke was losing feeling in his legs, but Cam insisted they go out for the finale and spell out "We Love the Word". Except Luke needed to be down from the wires to add the L to make "World." Cam figures the hell with it, and lower the Franklin logo. Sure enough, "We Love the F Word".And if you guessed Phil couldn't scrape off the ad with a tiny razor and Claire would discover she can't be satisfied, but Phil thinks it makes her more of an escort than a prostitute. And when Haley sees her side of the van, she refuses to get in it. She'll go home with anyone. (ALEX: That's what it should say on the side of the van.) Claire was livid, but Phil sort of defended himself by saying 25 out of the 30 calls were for the hot blonde.CLAIRE: Men are pigs. (suddenly not so upset) They say anything else about me?Mitchell brings Cameron some flowers, and Cam thanks him for staying supportive through the entire disaster. They hug and kiss and have a moment, which Luke interrupts because he wants to be cut down from the wires. He can feel his heart beating in his eyes now.

Directed by Michael Spiller  

Starring Ed O'Neill, Sofía Vergara, Julie Bowen, Ty Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, more...

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