"Modern Family" fans, the end is nearish.
ABC on Tuesday secured an 11th and final season for its long-running hit, which means we'll finally be saying goodbye to the Pritchetts and Dunphys sometime in the spring of 2020.
This extension was a surprise to no one, other than those who actually believed the executive producers, who around this time last year said the 10th would likely be the last. "Modern Family" may no longer be an Emmy or cultural infatuation but plenty of viewers still care (nearly 6 million on average per episode on season 9).
Nevertheless, even the showrunners couldn't help but make light of this long and almost certainly exhausting goodbye season:
“For 10 years, our characters have bravely faced turning points in life and moved through them to great personal enrichment," said Christopher Lloyd, "Family" co-creator. "We have chosen a different path by doing one more season of ‘Modern Family.’”
Steve Levitan, the show's other co-creator added, “Even after 10 years together, we realized there are still some things our writers don’t yet know about each other’s sex lives.”
How potentially exhausting? ABC Entertainment chief Karey Burke said in a statement, “In its final season, there will be more milestone events that anyone who has been a fan of the series won’t want to miss.”
"Modern Family" arrived Sept. 22, 2009 and instantly became a critical and audience smash — and also notably featured primetime's best-known married gay couple, Mitch (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and Cam (Eric Stonestreet). It has received more than 80 Primetime Emmy nominations and 22 wins, including outstanding comedy from 2010 through 2014. Among the leads, Ty Burrell, Julie Bowen and Stonestreet are two-time winners each.
ABC did not say how many episodes will air in the final 2019-20 season, although Deadline.com reported that as many as 22 were expected. If so, that means "Family" will end at 254 episodes, making it one of the longest-running sitcoms in U.S. TV history.