"The Future Dunphys" is the nineteenth episode from Season 4 of Modern Family, it aired on April 3, 2013.

Plot Summary

At the hospital, Claire and Phil see the older version of their family; Mitchell and Cameron plan a day for Lily and Gloria; Manny and Jay go to a private school to look around. 

Episode Description

After Claire's heart scare a few weeks back, she had to go in for an angiogram to prevent future heart attacks. Step 1, don't let Phil tell the kids what to do. Letting Haley quit her job when she just got more responsibility, telling Alex she can study for her PSAT's all she wants during Spring Break (yikes!), and helping Luke set the toaster on fire when he tries to improve on it are not good for her heart. Meanwhile Manny, not wanting to be in public school much longer, had an interview at Dryden Academy, an ultra-rich prep school that made Jay harken back to his days when he did coat check at a country club when the snooty rich kids would just throw their coats at him like he was a dirtbag. He even had a scar near his eye he told everyone else was from the war was really a toggle from a Burberry coat. (JAY: Still not sure there isn't a piece still in there.) Cameron and Mitchell decided Lily needed a "girl's day", especially since Lily was asking a lot of questions about the female body and complaining she didn't have boobs. (MITCHELL: We decided to call in the big guns.) Yup, even Mitchell can make a joke like that about Gloria. But Gloria was quite excited about it; Lily and her would go shopping, get their nails done, and get a haircut. It was a big day in store because Gloria promised Lily she could ask any question she wanted.

LILY: Did you know I'm gay? (Rush back to the house)

Claire waited in the hospital, and in the next bed was an older man, Norman, who was in for a triple-bypass. He agreed with Phil that you have to let kids be who they are...until he was visited by his three children: a four-time divorced airhead, a straitlaced archivist who lives with a cat, and a dim guy who was out on parole. Both Phil and Claire couldn't miss the parallels to their own kids and separately freaked out. Phil went out to use the phone, and Claire got to hear that none of Norman's kids wanted to stay around to hear from their overly-bossy mother. And now Claire had her phone out. Phil changed his mind and told Haley not to quit her job and Alex will go on that trip with her friend. Claire also called, telling Alex she could study if she wants and Haley can get another job...but she loved all of them. Of course, the kids are all in the same room when this happens and come to the same conclusion: Mom's in worse shape than they led on. Or they've been kidnapped. Well, Luke thinks it's that.

Gloria, Cam, and Mitch tried to figure out why Lily thought she was gay. Although Cam thought it was possible because he knew he was gay by his fifth birthday. (MITCHELL: EVERYBODY knew when you were five.) But they were worried.

MITCHELL: She is not gay. It's probably just a phase. (realizes) Oh my God, did I just say that? Do not tell anyone I just said that!

Lily said one of her classmate's parents were Italian, so he was Italian. And since Mitch and Cam were gay, then she was. They explain to her being gay is not a heritage. They tell her she's Vietnamese, and she wants to know more. Unfortunately, none of them knew anything about Vietnam. (Nobody does, and that's sad.) They decided to take Lily to a Vietnamese restaurant so she could try some of the food and meet a few Vietnamese people.

At Dryden Academy, Jay and Manny are walking around, Jay a bit more derisively since all he saw were the little snotty punks he used to see forty years ago. One even threw a coat at him. But he was supposed to wear the coat like all of the other parents. He finally broke down and admitted it: he was jealous of the rich kids, even today. Suddenly, he loved the campus and wanted Manny to do well on his interview. In fact, he put so much pressure on Manny to succeed, naturally Manny gets stage fright and doesn't get in. Manny was all depressed because he thought this was his best chance for Jay to be proud of him, but Jay apologized, saying he is always proud of Manny. Even when he forgot to return the headmaster's mobile phone after betting he could fit it into his mouth.

As a freaked out Haley, Alex, and Manny rush to the hospital, only to find out Claire was OK and yell at their parents for making a big deal out of nothing (again!), Lily wasn't really enjoying the Vietnamese restaurant. She wanted a cheeseburger, but everybody wanted her to enjoy a soup called Pho. (LILY: You told me not to say that word.) But not even the Vietnamese waitress could convince her. (LILY: I HATE Vietnam!) The patrons in the restaurant aside, Gloria said she needed to enjoy the culture of her ancestors, but Lily was adamant she was gay. And came out to the entire restaurant.

MITCHELL: Honey, you're not gay. You're just confused. (oops) Oh my God! What is wrong with me?

Mitchell and Cameron are ready to give up, but Gloria wasn't. (GLORIA: That's the problem with this country! Nobody cares about where they come from anymore! They just want cheeseburgers and prep school and forget they come from Colombia!) OK, part of that might have been Manny forgetting some of his Spanish from earlier, but the point was clearly made. Gloria was afraid she was losing her children to America.

GLORIA: I'm just afraid they're going to grow up and become boring old white people. (As two boring old white people go by)

CAMERON: (apologetic) Uh, most of our friends are white. (as two black people go by) OK, can everybody just calm down and go back to their own conversations?

Gloria was upset for feeling so different from the rest of her family, which is exactly what Lily was feeling. Hence claiming she was gay; so she could be more like her dads. But the guys explained to both of them that a family is a group of people who love each other, not because they come from the same place. (CAMERON: You know, you just caused a scene in a restaurant, and you can't get any more like your daddies than that.) Gloria feels better and even contemplated taking Manny and Joe to Colombia for the summer. Mitchell agrees, saying all of us need to get more in touch with our culture.

CAMERON: Absolutely! I think we'd all be better off if people would go back to where they came from!

MITCHELL: (awkward) I'll...go pull the car around.

But on the good side, Phil and Luke did successfully combine batter and unpopped popcorn kernels to make the first popcake. Or flipjack, that sounds better.

Main Cast

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

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

Guest Starring

  • Justine Bateman as Angela
  • Richard Riehle as Norman
  • Anastasia Basil as Sydney
  • Luka Jones as Dustin
  • John Cygan as Admissions Dean
  • Brian Palermo as Dryden Dad
  • Amy Anderson as Beth
  • Dominic Barnes as Matthew
  • David Pevsner as Dr. Nussbaum
  • Candace Edwards as Nurse
  • Elaine Ko as Receptionist



  • Lily learns for the first time that she is Vietnamese.
  • Anastasia Basil had also appeared in "Go Bullfrogs!" as the 'Jilted Wife'.

Cultural References