"Marco Polo" is the fourth episode from Season 6 of Modern Family, it aired on October 15, 2014.

Plot Summary

The Dunphys temporarily move into a cramped hotel room while their house is getting treated for mold, and Phil sees this as an opportunity to spend some quality time together, but Claire and the kids are less than enthused. Gloria becomes overprotective when Manny starts dating an older, popular girl, and Cameron is under a lot of pressure to maintain his team's winning streak but when he realizes Mitchell may be a jinx, emotions run high.

Episode Description

The Dunphys have to leave their house for a few days while it is being treated for mold. Phil closes the last room of a nearby hotel with only one single full-sized bed. Claire figures that they can survive one night, but five nights later, things do not seem really good. They have to leap over Claire to get to the bathroom with the drain hair that doesn't match any of them, and they have to contend with Luke drowning himself in a foul-smelling body spray. It gets even worse when the bottle breaks and starts spraying everyone. Fortunately, Phil throws himself on the Grenade to save the family. Haley and Alex are going out of their minds, and this is before Luke pulls out a second bottle and continues spraying himself.

Cameron's football team is up to 5-0. It is unprecedented at the school, so Cameron picks up several superstitions before every game. Mitchell is getting a bit tired of it and tries to stop Cameron from following those superstitions, but with no luck. When Cameron leaves, Mitchell realizes that it does not matter if he does not like football. Mitchell feels like he has to be supportive of Cameron, so he decides to go to the game.

Jay and Gloria are worried about Manny hanging out with Sam, a new friend who's a senior while Manny is still a sophomore. They later realize that Manny's friend is actually a girl and she is also his girlfriend, which makes Gloria worry even more.

Back at the Dunphys, Phil discovers that Claire has found a room for herself and has been sleeping there on her own. Phil feels betrayed, but Haley wonders why some of them can't stay with her. The three kids agree that Claire's room is much bigger and nicer and finally decide to go to her room, leaving Phil alone.

At the football game, the team is playing very well, and Gloria is up in arms over Manny dating a senior. Jay tries to defend her by showing that Sam made a sign for Manny and is waving it at the game. But when Mitchell arrives, the luck of the team suddenly changes, which makes Cam think that Mitchell may be a jinx. While Cam berates Mitchell for showing up and jinxing the team, Jay catches Sam making out with what appears to be her ex-boyfriend. He can't tell Manny because it would break his heart, and he can't tell Gloria either because she would break Sam, so he keeps it all to himself until after the game. Which, thankfully, the team won. Mitchell has left, and Cameron is upset with himself when he turns back to the stands and doesn't see him. He calls to apologize for what he said, and Mitchell is on the fence at the far end of the stadium. He tried to take a shortcut to get back to his car and got stuck. Both of them apologize to each other for how they behaved.

Back at home, Manny tries to sneak up to bed, but Jay catches him, inviting him to have a sip of scotch. Manny admits Sam dumped him. Actually, she was just using him to make her ex-boyfriend jealous. Manny can't believe his first girlfriend was just using him. Jay points out that of all the boys, Sam chose him to make her ex to get jealous and that should make him feel important because it means he is at the same level as the other guy. But Manny is still heartbroken and he finally hugs Jay to feel better. Manny asks Jay if he can still have a sip of that scotch that he said. Jay tells him yes, against Gloria's advice, and describes it as a beautiful and full-bodied 18-year-old, which makes Manny remember Sam and cry even more.

Phil is upset that Claire and the kids left him. He has some room-swipe wine from the hotel's "bar" and meets other men staying at the hotel as well. The other guys, both divorced, feel his pain and they think he needs to have a little fun with the cute Nigerian lady who wants to go to the pool with him. Phil, on the other hand, thinks he will be fine, but later changes his mind. He tries to teach the nice lady and the rest of her family the pool game of Marco Polo, but it doesn't work so well. Thankfully, Haley and Alex find out that the hotel is half-full all week and that Phil lied to them so they could all spend time together. The then family relents and heads down to the pool to play Marco Polo with him in the middle of the night, which makes Phil very happy.

In the end credits, the Nigerian family arrives at the Dunphy house in the middle of the night to stay with the Dunphys (with their two not-so-domesticated dogs). Phil then realizes he shouldn't have used the phrase "stop by anytime" with them so loosely. 

Main Cast

(The characters striked out do not appear in this episode)

  • Jay Pritchett
  • Gloria Pritchett
  • Manny Delgado
  • Joe Pritchett
  • Claire Dunphy
  • Phil Dunphy
  • Haley Dunphy
  • Alex Dunphy
  • Luke Dunphy
  • Mitchell Pritchett
  • Cameron Tucker
  • Lily Tucker-Pritchett

Guest Starring



  • For the first time, Manny gets a girlfriend named Sam, although she dumps him at the end of the episode.

Cultural References