Counting down the best TV in 2010
4. "Modern Family" (ABC)
Just when I was ready to write off family comedy, in the wake of "According to Jim," along comes "Modern Family." Sitcoms that rat-a-tat jokes — "30 Rock," "Family Guy" — can be hysterical. But "Modern Family" takes a quieter, more character-based approach, mining personality for laughs. I can't think of a show that has dropped so many fully realized characters on us at once, inviting us to both laugh with and laugh at them. Eric Stonestreet deservedly took home an Emmy for his indelible turn as Cam the drama queen, but everyone else in the cast — particularly Ty Burrell (left with Julie Bowen) as Phil — could have won and elicited no complaint from me. Another big plus: Manny.