i did a standard surly search and didn't find a thread, and i think i know why.
when mf first came out, i thought it was hilarious. even though seasons 2-4 were a little uneven, overall, the show was great. there was drama with split showrunners after s1, so that explains part of it, but mostly it was solid. then it went into syndication, and i was able to watch several of my favorite episodes again, and still loved them. "the old wagon", "good cop bad dog", "phil on wire", and "yard sale" are all-time classics.
then, season 5 came out, and suffered from the very common sitcom fatigue that you'll often find around the 75-100 episode mark. that's a lot of fucking tv to write. it also started to do annoying shit like taking the entire cast and crew to australia (for a half hour episode that wasn't even a season premiere or finale). you're rich, we get it. around season 6, i started to look around and realize this isn't fun anymore. i asked a few other people, and most were like, "yeah, it's not as good, but we still watch it every week, we still laugh." ok.
sidenote - i am not a broadcast network snob. i know a lot of people (and i'm sure there are plenty on this board) that are just done with broadcast network tv (abc, cbs, nbc, fox). we still watch a handful of shows. the wife watches more than me, but whatever. if something is quality, i'll still watch, just no procedurals.
so it was around seasons 6-7 where i stopped watching, maybe would catch an episode from the dvr and half pay attention to it, or the next day on hulu, stuff like that. i know it's been on forever, but lost track. bits and pieces here and there, saw some storylines come around, then watched some from this past season, because it was the end. it was pretty bad, unsuccessfully trying to recapture its early success.
what was interesting about modern family through the years was its non-participation with streaming services with its catalog. pretty much every sitcom (current or past) can be found somewhere on the main streamers. most are on hulu. and even though it was contractually obligated to show their current season through abc on demand and hulu (next-day), the previous seasons were only avail through standard syndication broadcasts.
after the latest wga standoff, modern family predictably settled in with hulu, and for the first time, all the seasons were available to stream. so since i hadn't watched all episodes, and hadn't watched most in a while, i thought this would be a fun rewatch, as we like to put sitcom reruns on while we're going to sleep. in my head, i was thinking, ok, there were ~10 seasons, and most was pretty good, i think it petered out around 7-8, and there's some garbage at the end (which most every show has, up to and especially seinfeld).
i was wrong. after the first 4 seasons, there was a big drop. and what i thought i remembered as a few more solid seasons were really a few more solid episodes, and around season 5, this show was pretty much done. and what i thought were a couple dead seasons - were five full fucking garbage seasons. this show went to 11. literally. everything after season 6 was almost unwatchable. but i persisted. i made my way through, enduring such taunts as "you're not even laughing" and "why are you doing this to yourself?"
even some of the nostalgia brought in with the final season was hollow and empty. i didn't care about the future of these characters, because i didn't really care about the past few years of their present.
the whole thing has me wondering - are broadcast sitcoms as we knew them, over? shows like brooklyn nine-nine are fading and have been reduced to shortened seasons, and i think this is the only way to do it. i don't think the old structure of 18-24 episodes per season is sustainable for a variety of reasons. animation can pull it off, but there are obvious exceptions that make that possible.
we gave the new abc show - home economics - a try (i'll watch literally any pilot), and it's harmless, but sad. and one of the actors makes it almost unwatchable. i thought i knew him from somewhere, and i was right. he was in some of the later seasons. of modern family.