It's hilarious, it's weird, it's one of the best sitcoms on television. I enjoy the characters, the pseudo-documentary style, the refreshing take on family life—it's safe to say I love pretty much every single thing about Modern Family.
Except, possibly, for Lily, Cameron and Mitchell’s adopted Vietnamese daughter. It's not that I'm a heartless monster who hates children, mind you (I have two of my own! I made them on purpose, even!), it's just that she's clearly a robot. Sure, they say her character is played by twins Jaden and Ella Hiller, but there's no way that can be true. No human toddler is that quiet or agreeable.
Apparently Hollywood agrees that it's time to replace the Lily-bot with some sort of carbon-based material, because there have been sightings of a casting notice seeking a female “Asian, 3- to 4-year-old” for the show. *closes eyes, presses fingertips to temples* Yes, my powerful investigative skills tell me this is a trade-in for baby Lily.
As much as it weirds me out whenever Lily is onscreen and doing that docile thing she does (she's obviously planning a cyborg takeover! Hello, has anyone checked to see if Skynet has been activated yet?), I'm not sure if it will be a good thing to replace her with your typical chatty, in-your-face preschooler. I read somewhere that her character has become sort of like Maggie Simpson—a nonspeaking counterpart that somehow underscores the humor of the ridiculous situations around her—and I totally agree. Do we really want Lily's lines adding to the banter between the always-awesome Cameron and Mitchell? I can't imagine how the writers will pull it off without making her character obnoxious ... or worse, insipidly, barftacularly cute. Doesn't anyone remember Full House?
On the other hand, there's some legitimate concern for what's best for the toddler actors themselves. The show's executive producer recently said that while everyone adores the twins, they've started to think Jaden and Ella would rather be at home playing than working on a set. Plus, the character simply has to evolve at some point:
At some point, Lily has to stop being a silent baby and has to become a little girl -- a laughing, acting little girl. If we feel it’s not in their best interest to stay, we will replace them, and ask that people forgive us for doing so.
It seems like a big challenge to not only replace the little girl that's become such a (silent, kinda-freaky) part of the show, but essentially create an entirely new character. Judging on what they've done so far, though, this seems like a creative team that can pull it off.
What do you think they should do with Baby Lily? Can you imagine her character being a talking preschooler instead?
Image via ABC