Cougar Town

It’s easy to think you have this show all figured out based on the title and a few teasers. I wanted to give it a chance to defy my expectations. I prepared to be offended by sexist/ageist jokes.

I must say it’s refreshing to hear women be obnoxiously sexist, and not under the guise of feminism like those materialistic know-it-alls on Sex in the City. This was genuinely funny. And the name “Cougar Town” actually refers to the high school football field, although the double meaning comes through loud and clear.

Courteney Cox, as Jules, is a riot. She is very close to the Courtney Cox we remember from Friends, with a little older-and-wiser edge. Even though she is still gorgeous, I think it’s great that the show opens with her checking out all her imperfections in the mirror. (I saw an interview where she confirmed that is it’s really her body we see.) This from the actress who was reportedly a size 0 when we knew her as Monica Gellar. Also, I was delighted to see Christa Miller of Scrubs, who must have majored in snarkiness in drama school.

I love that, despite her purported intentions to go all cougar on the boys of her community, Jules is actually really uncomfortable when a man comes a-calling. She retains some dignity this way; she’s not Stiffler’s mom. Plus, we’re set up from the first few minutes to expect that she’s going to fall for her divorced, similarly-aged neighbor.

The poor son. His mother’s cleavage is all over town on real estate posters and his dad is cutting the lawn at his high school. We don’t worry about him too much, though—what teenager isn’t embarrassed by their parents? Jules shows that she does care by standing up for him towards the end.

By the time Jules ends the episode by hitting the sheets with a 20-something, we’ve gotten to know her. I for one felt like she was just trying to enjoy life, not that she has turned into some sort of sexual predator, as the term “cougar” might imply. If this show lasts as long as Friends, however, we should hope that she won’t spend the entire decade on the prowl. It could get old.

Memorable lines: “Give me twenty bucks. I’ll buy you a drink.”

[Son taking banana away from mom] “You’re not allowed to eat these any more.”

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