Modern Family S10E3 Script

A Sketchy Area (2018)

Every afternoon, I've been going to Luke's campus to help him train for rugby try-outs.

What do you say we practice that lineout lift one last time?

And... I gotta go.

I don't want to be late for Women's Studies.

That's what I call my lunch break.

All right. Good luck at try-outs!

The other day, something pretty interesting caught my eye.

Uh, modifications must be made to standard microeconomic procedures to apply supply and demand analysis.

PHILIP: Hmm. First, we construct a utility function where Y equals income and X equals the cost of services. Well...

Uh, next, we vary either X... (EXHALES SHARPLY)

What's on your mind?

Well, um, with all due respect, uh, you have a room full of aspiring realtors here, and I worry that you might be turning them off with all those numbers and formulas.

It's actually a very exciting business, it's about people, and emotional connections, and magnets with your face on them.

You think you can just walk in here and start teaching this class?

I'm so sorry, I shouldn't have...

No, I'm asking, can you teach this class for me?

If I leave now, I won't have to pay the all-day parking rate.

Ten minutes with the dean, who it turns out I'd sold a house to, and I was official.

Imagine, Phil Dunphy shaping minds in the hallowed halls of Sequoia Community College, established 2016.

As you can see from this graph, it's not about X's and Y's, it's about "oohs" and "ahhs."


Mmm. Okay. So, what does real estate equal?


Eye contact! (MARKER CLATTERS)



All right, your breakfast is almost ready.

You're gonna need all your energy for the courtroom today in case you have to yell, "I'm out of order? You're out of order! The whole damn system's out of order!"

Might not do that. I think I'm winning, so, big fan of the system right now.

Anyway, it can't hurt to have some experienced eyes take a look at this police work.


Okay, I know you fancy yourself some sort of detective.

You know, I was quite the amateur sleuth as a boy, a real-life Encyclopedia Brown. They called me Thesaurus Jones.

What I really need right now is just a few minutes of silence, so...

I would say my toughest case was "The Case of the Missing Snowman."

You know, at first I thought he'd come to life, but it turns out...

Oh, shh! My trial! NEWSCASTER: Today marks the fourth day of witness questioning by the DA 's office.

MITCHELL: Oh, my God! CAM: (EX CLAIMS) Is that you?

I look like an elf that just walked in to his own surprise party.

No, it's like the time we tried to microwave a squash.

Uh... Okay, this is my first big trial, a chance to make a name for myself, all anyone's going to be talking about is that awful picture!

Okay, this is a disaster.

There's a place downtown where all the lawyers go to drink, it's called The Sidebar.

They put courtroom sketches on the wall of everyone's first big trial.

Maybe nobody saw it.


Don't assume the worst. It could just be an AMBER Alert.



CLAIRE: Since it is our first day with our new partners, I thought maybe you could get to work as close to on time as...

JAY: I will try my best.


I'm sorry. Am I late?

No. We're not real time sticklers here. Oh. Ah!

We've found that team members really excel when they follow their own energy rhythms.

WOMAN: Mmm-hmm. JAY: Interesting.

'Cause I've found team members are happiest when the company stays in business.

Which means asses in chairs by 9:00.

Dad, can I just have a quick sec with you?

JAY: Sure.

Um, so, Dad, look, the culture is just different here, and you just can't come in with a sledgehammer, or it's gonna create tension.

You don't want to alienate people.

So, you want me to change who I am?

No. I just want you to hide who you are.

Come on. Just a little bit. Let's get rid of this.

Look at that, that's better already. Who is this 50-something, huh?

Fine. I will be on my best behavior.

Thanks, Dad. (SIGHS)

So sorry about that.

No, it's no problem. Family time is so important.

That's why we offer 14 months paid paternity leave.

Mmm. Okay.

Let's see an update on that Thinfinity model.

CLAIRE: Ooh. Cool design.

Who do I high-five for that, huh? Everybody.

Our design meetings are organized around burstiness.

Which is a rapid-fire creative process that really just unlocks the unconscious.


Does anybody else find that distracting?

Actually, it's great for left brain stimulation.

I got winner!

(CHUCKLES) We don't keep score.

No? WOMAN 1: Watch out!

JAY: What the hell?

You don't know about zorbing?

It promotes mind-body balance.

It's kind of like the German version of flerming.

Okay, that's it.

Now, I'm about to introduce you squids to a little thing called back-breaking, soul-crushing hard work.

How many heart attacks have you had here in the last five years? Zero?

Where am I?

America loves closets, and I'm here to build them, damn it!

And you get this back when I see people pull up in the morning, crying in their cars.


Okay, must you?

You know what, we're gonna make sure that sketch artist sees the best possible version of you.

Let's get those apples a-shinin'. Okay. Stop it. Don't.

Okay, your face gets weird when you make that "O" sound, so avoid that.

Are you serious?

The defendant runs the Orange County Oceanic and Ornithological Organization.

That was hard to watch. (STAMMERS)

BAILIFF: All rise.

Last looks!

Stop. JUDGE: Be seated.

Mr. Pritchett, you may resume your questioning of the witness.

Mitchell, he's here! Hmm?

Only give him your best side, avoid the fluorescent lights, no O's, and whatever you do, do not stand next to the bailiff, he is breathtaking.

Oh, my God. Counselor?

Uh, sorry, Your Honor. Um...

Miss Carpenter... Bad side.

Do you recall seeing this man on the night in question?

Yes, sir.

And is he, to your knowledge, the CEO of the Orange County Oceanic and Ornithological Organization?

Counselor, you're mumbling. Oh, uh...

Can you repeat that, please?

Does he run the bird and water place?


And is he here today in this, uh...


As I was saying... A little further.

(STAMMERS) Is he here today in this courtroom?

That's him.

Let the court note that I'm pretty sure the witness has identified the defendant.



Elbow patches?

Did you burn through another blazer at Benihana's?

Actually, it's for my new position teaching real estate at your school.

What are you talking about? They offered me a job.

But hey, listen to me.

Lifelong dreams aside, I'm not taking this unless you're on board.

I'm definitely not.

I get it.

You don't want your old Pops cramping your style.

So, I'm out.

(CHUCKLING) It's just funny, I can't remember the last time I was this excited.

But it wouldn't make any sense unless you were excited, too.

Not even a little bit. Right.

Those poor kids, though, huh?

I have so much to offer.

For example, which house styles are sold by which cookie type.

French Revival... (IN FRENCH ACCENT) Macaroons.

English Tudor... (IN ENGLISH ACCENT) Shortbread.

(IN NORMAL VOICE) But we both know what you want, so, uh, I'll resign and go back to trying to figure out what to do with my final years.



I need a place to stay for a couple of days.

I can't go home, can't go to school, don't want to talk about it.

Got it.

I knew that Alex wanted to talk about it, but I had a lot on my mind.

I had a rough morning with Joe.

Have a great first day.

Aren't you gonna walk me in?

No, in first grade, you have drop-off.

No one said anything about drop-off.

What if I can't find my cubby?

There don't have cubbies, they have lockers here.

Wait a second. Where's my lunch box?

Oh, I signed you up for the hot lunch program.

(GASPS) What is this place?

Okay, I've been feeling some pressure about what to do after I graduate this year.

And my parents are constantly asking me about it.

I thought that you were going to work. So did I.

But lately, I've been questioning everything.

I've even thought about becoming a fellow.

(GASPS) Alex, that's a big change.

But at least you get to keep the same name.

I'm not even sure it's what I really want.

Okay, you have to be very sure, because I heard it's even harder to reverse it.

Can we talk about anything else? Where's Joe?

He started school today.

He was so panicky when I dropped him off.

I don't know why, it's just first grade.

Just first grade?

That's when the pressure starts! (EX CLAIMS) You're freaking me out.

Alex is going to be a very nervous man.


(STUTTERING) Excuse me! Sketch man!

We'd like a word with you about your little drawings.

You don't remember me, do you?



Well, obviously, we have offended you somehow.

Oh, were you the barista we had fired?

Here's a hint, I once stayed in your upstairs rental.


Who consumes an entire welcome basket? We usually reuse half this stuff!

All the Altoids? He was here one night.

He even ate the horseradish mustard?

What did he put it on? We purposefully don't give crackers!


BOTH: Hey.

We are so sorry we offended you, but... Ooh.

Too late, I own you two.

And I haven't even gotten to my best stuff yet.

I can go redder.

You wouldn't. Just wait till I connect the brows.

Please, we have a child.

Reporting live from the courthouse.

Oh, fun. A reporter from CNN.

Looks like this pretty little portrait's about to go national.

(CAM SIGHS) What are we going to do?

Okay, is it just me or does this sound like a job for Thesaurus Jones?

It's just you. No. Blackmail, Mitchell!

We just have to dig something up on this guy, which shouldn't be a problem, because everyone's hiding something.


I feel like you're sitting on one more...

Everyone. Yeah.


CLAIRE: Just as I feared, my dad had crushed the spirit of everyone in that office.

I had to do something to prove we weren't some stuffy killjoys.

It's time to bust out Party Claire. (CHUCKLES)

She'd retired, after spring break '89. (SNIFFS)

And again in '92.

Hey, do you have a second?

If this is about my respecting your process...

Actually, we want to thank you for laying down the law before.

Because we have gone soft as a company, we needed a couple grown-ups to come in and put us back on track.

Thanks to you, we've gotten rid of all the distractions.

No more ping-pong tables, squirt guns. The only thing we couldn't find was that giant... CLAIRE: Break time, bitches!

Oh, it turns out, this is a little... Oh, my God. This is gonna take me...

I'm so sorry.

Oh, my God. I'm so sorry.




Sketch boy was unusually well-groomed for somebody coming out of a government-subsidized gym.

Something wasn't right.

I was getting that old Thesaurus Jones tingle.

I decided to do some sniffing around.


Sketch guy's face had a kind of glow that can only be achieved with expensive creams and unguents, yet all I found were packets of cut-rate, all-purpose lotions.

(INAUDIBLE CONVERSATION) - According to my sources, the gym had an executive level that provides all manner of fancy spa products.

But it's for judges and attorneys only.

I created a diversion by convincing the security detail there was a towel emergency...

There's a towel emergency.

And hacked into the gym 's computer system.

Turns out Jonah's been accessing the executive level by swiping the ID of one Victor Graham, a retired judge.

Members of the jury, the defendant, Mr. Kane, would have you believe that he was working at the time of the crime.


Faced lies! (DOOR OPENS)

Counselor? Ah.

Because evidence would clearly suggest that, um...

Oh. That while James Kane does have an office on his company's executive floor, he was nowhere near it that night.

Nice try, executive-level Jim...

Kane, but we're onto you.

Ladies and gentlemen, before you've retired, judge... For yourself, and draw a more accurate conclusion than the one Mr. Kane would have you believe.

Counselor, you're speaking weirdly.

I'm sure you will find the defendant's alibi to be thin...


Even thinner...


(SOFTLY) Thank you.


Good afternoon, young realtors.

I have a very important announcement to make after class, but in the meantime, if you would be so kind as to open your books...


Oh, boy. I can't do this.

Students, today is our last day together.



I've treasured our time together.

Brett, I know we got off to a rough start, but once we broke down those walls, I'm not sure who was teaching who.

Whitney, you're the toughest single mother I know.

Lucy, you be good to your mom.

Bob, amazing how you battle that dyslexia.

Maybe ease off on the anger toward your parents, though.

They did you a solid giving you that name.

We're going to miss you, Mr. Nudphy.

It's... You flipped it. But I'm gonna miss you guys, too.

(SIGHS) Location. Location. Location.

You memorized it.

Now, for the second and last time, class dismissed.

LUKE: Dad.

Luke? How long have you been back there?

I pretty much saw the whole thing. (SIGHS)

Hey, Dad? Yeah?

Don't forget your coffee mug.


I'm sure this all worked out for the best.

I'II, uh, probably miss a few spontaneous Frisbee opportunities, and apparently a tumbling exchange program, oh, well.

And an Amateur Inventors Association.

How much fun could it be changing the world anyway?

"The Sequoia College Players Present: A Hall and Oates Magic Show."

Dad, wait. Yes, Luke?

Don't forget your mug again.

Come on! Can't you see I'm meant to be here?

I'm sorry, but I've never had a school to myself.

I was always Alex's dumb brother, or Manny's hot nephew.

Now, I can finally be my own person.

I'm sorry, I get it. (STUTTERS) I really do.

I think I was just getting a little overexcited. I'II, uh...

I'll see you at home.

Dunphy, glad I ran into you, so I can congratulate you personally.

Wait, I made the team? First string.

I gotta say, your form on that line-out lift...

(CHUCKLES) Was impeccable.

Thanks. Yeah.


Hey, Dad, I made the team!

PHILIP: That's amazing! I knew you would, you're a natural.

Well, I had a great teacher.


So, listen...

This is a big campus.

Maybe we could both be here... (TIRES SCREECHING)

...if we promise to stay out of each other's way.

Oh, I'd hate to step on your toes.

No, you wouldn't.

I would hate to stop you from doing something you're so good at.

I guess I could think about it.

I mean, it's not like I'd be there all the time.

I, uh, have class, and office hours, and I have the 11:00 a.m. To 2:00 p.m. Slot at the campus radio station on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Hey! If you want to be my sidekick...


You're right. It's better if I do all the voices.

What's up?

What's all this?

Well, you got me so nervous about Joe's terrible day, that I put all this out to cheer him up.

Sundae, video game. I even wrote him a little pep talk.

We're lucky to live in the golden age of medicines.

Hey, Grandpa, I'm staying here for a couple days, and I do not wanna talk about it. Cool.


Hey, is my dad home?

(WHISPERS) Crap, what's my mom doing here?

Come with me.

I owe him an apology. I made a huge scene at work.

(SIGHS) Well, sometimes the best way to say "I'm sorry" is in an e-mail.

(VOICE BREAKING) I plowed over a bunch of people in a giant hamster ball.

And then, I tried to impress the foodies by ordering Indian for lunch, and then, I chewed some gum to get rid of my coriander breath, and I'm pretty sure some of it is in my hair.

And then I... Oh, tripped and fell and skinned my knee, and everybody saw my underwear. (DOOR OPENS)

Crushed it!

First days are easy when you're cool.


I do feel bad for Conner B. He brought stinky egg salad for lunch.

He's gonna have to eat with the nurse.

Oh, God! GLORIA: Ay!

Eh, Joe, why don't you go upstairs?

Oh! I just want to go back to my old office, where I had friends.

GLORIA: I know.

Sometimes, you know, we all have bad days.


"And sometimes, we have to deal with mean boys."

Boys are mean. You're right, Gloria.

I am right? (SNIFFLES) Mmm.

"Oh, you know what I love about this family?"

Mmm? "We're not quitters. Especially you.

"Remember how hard it was for you to learn how to swim?"

It was hard.

"But now, it's your favorite thing in the world, "because it reminds you of how strong you are."

I mean, I like to swim...

"Tomorrow can only be better." Mmm.

"But just in case, "I'll come at lunch, and I will kiss you through the fence."

How about I text you around 11:00, and let you know how I'm doing?

So, you wanna tell me why you're avoiding your mom?

I'm not avoiding her. What's all this?

Danger O'Shea memorabilia. I'm a big collector.

Who's Danger O'Shea?

Legendary daredevil, got famous for jumping over a school bus on his motorcycle.

Get over here. Talk to me, tell me why you're avoiding your mom. (SIGHS)

Okay, well, I've been on a science track my whole life, which my parents love.

"Alex the scientist!"

But lately, I've been having second thoughts.

I've always loved singing, and I've been doing some open mic nights recently, and it's been going really well.

I see where this is going. Sing for me.

What, like, right now?

Just sing.

(SINGING) Somewhere over the rainbow Skies are blue That was great.

Stick to science.

Wow. You really got a knack for pep talks in this house.

I'm not saying it's impossible. I'm saying play the odds.

For example, you take this O'Shea guy.

Oh, good, we're back to him.

But he was smart, he started a business, got established.

And when he couldn't kick the daredevil dream, he went for it.

And he was good, real good.

Until that fateful day he tried to jump over a motorcycle in a school bus.

Fortunately for him, unlike his act, he had a safety net.

His business. Jumped right back in.

Within a year, it was bigger than ever.

The point is, you've been on the science track for 15 years.

See it through, build a foundation.

If in a couple of years, you still have the singing bug, go for it.

I guess you're right.

It would be pretty dumb of me to give up on the career path I'm on.

I could make half a mil my first year out of school.

Wow! What do they pay men?


So, Danger never did another stunt again?

He still brings that maverick spirit to everything he does.

Which is why he got to the top of his industry.

Some people think it's the greatest stunt he ever pulled off.


Thanks for the talk... Danger.

So, I won my case, and even better, this is going up at The Sidebar.

Yeah. And now, maybe you'll have some respect for my investigative skills. It was a pretty simple case, because, as I've said, everyone has something to hide.


You know... Everyone.