Series premieres Sept. 23
Spoiler alert: If you don't want to know the twist at the end of Modern Family's first episode, consider it enough to know that this is the funniest sitcom pilot of the fall and stop reading now. The deftly crafted mock-documentary introduces us to three hilariously odd families: a gay couple bringing back their adopted baby daughter from Vietnam; a May-December second marriage between a businessman (Ed O'Neill) and his new Colombian bride (Sofia Vergara); and an overstressed husband and wife with three kids. At the end of the episode, we discover the secret that ABC first wanted to keep mum, then gave away this summer in its ads: they're one extended family. Really, the strength of Modern Family isn't the twist but the twisty family ties that bind.