Two weeks into Cougar Town's run, we're left with one question: How long can the show run one joke into the ground? The older-woman-trying-to-recapture-her-youth gag was predictably played up in the pilot episode and recycled in the second, with tiring results. If Cougar Town wants to live on, it needs to -- ironically -- grow up.
The backstory: Cougar Town stars Courteney Cox as Jules Cobb, a divorcee with a teenage son in a fictional Floridian suburb where even ladies with walkers are showing off their boob jobs. As older, upper-middle-class, single women are wont to do, Jules decides to get back in the game and recapture the youth she spent caring for her baby -- by partying at clubs where the patrons are half her age and banging boys she probably babysat a few decades ago.
And so far, that's pretty much all we've seen. Anatomical jokes, drunken shenanigans, and head games with younger men (things we expect from a Jenny McCarthy, not Cox) have added up to a pair of unrewarding episodes that've pushed the once-promising show toward the bottom of our care-about list.
For one thing, we don't care about Jules. At all. A good comedic main character is either someone we would welcome into our circle of friends (say, Chuck Bartowski in Chuck) or someone who's so despicable that we can't wait to see what they do next (Larry David in Curb Your Enthusiasm). Jules is neither. She's neurotic to the nth degree, she treats her long-time friend as a doormat, and I have a feeling she may be bi-polar... possibly even tri-polar. Seriously, she's insane. No amount of cleavage is going to draw attention away from those red flags.
There's a scene in the second episode where her male-cougar neighbor and nemesis (and no doubt soon to be romantic interest) pleads to Jules: "Just do me a favor and stop trying to drag me into your little 'where did all the years go?' nervous breakdown thing you seem to be going through, okay?"
My sentiments exactly.
Cougar Town, which has done well in the ratings and helped revived ABC's comedy chops (along with the much funnier Modern Family), really needs to knock one out of the park tonight. This is the third date, and if the show doesn't put out, we won't be calling back.
Cougar Town airs Wednesday nights at 9:30 pm on ABC.