Yes, We Kin

ABC's Modern Family is a clever study of an off-kilter clan

Burrell, left, and Bowen, right, are the conventional-yet-odd-couple.

Workplace comedies like the office, it's sometimes said, are really family comedies--only about families of people with almost nothing in common, thrown together by circumstance. Thing is, that often describes actual families as well. So it's only fitting that the funniest new family comedy of the year, ABC's Modern Family (Wednesdays, 9 p.m. E.T.), is shot in the same mockumentary style as The Office, with a similar mix of hilarity and heart.

It's a neat approach, one that emphasizes how understanding the people closest to you--the father who takes a much younger second wife, the defensive gay brother who comes home...

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