Quick Take: Cougar Town, "Feel a Whole Lot Better"
"Friends with benefits… the old F.W.B." - Jules
Review: Cougar Town, "Feel a Whole Lot Better"
(S0122) This was the first time in a long time that I wasn't instantly ready to write glowing things about Cougar Town. I didn't dislike it but… it felt a little off. Maybe a little bit more like the vibe of the earliest episodes when the show was still finding its way. Certainly there was a more dramatic flavor this week, which it's been trending to more lately with Travis (Dan Byrd) going off to college and the slow burn on the Jules (Courtney Cox) and Grayson (Josh Hopkins) relationship.
Last week, in "Letting You Go," the drama and comedy were in near perfect balance – I'm still cracking up over bizarre and nearly experimental comedy of the whole midnight cowboy and wine/popcorn/Enya/dancing bit (if you haven't seen it… well as you might guess, you just have to go see it). This week, the drama focused on Jules contending with her agreement to do a "friends with benefits" ("the old F.W.B.) relationship with Grayson and her immediate realization that she had serious feelings for him. It's possible that the "off-ness" had to do with this storyline moving too quickly – we had 21 episodes to meet these two characters and slowly see them work up to The Big Hookup, and now they've zoomed from One Night Stand to F.W.B. to the start of a real adult-type relationship in just over an episode.
There were some funny moments here, too, but the rhythm and chemistry didn't quite match those of recent weeks. The turnabout of the old "that's what she said" joke (mostly kept running by The Office, both UK and US, I'd say) to "that’s what he said" was just kind of so so in my book, but there were some funny one liners, such as when Ellie (Christa Miller) refers to the cheesy dolphin tattoo on her butt as her "spirit guide." And Jules' insane series of plans for what to do about Grayson worked pretty well (Plan B: deliver a series of insult/compliments to throw him off guard). But my favorite moments involved Andy (Ian Gomez), as they often do. His "fresh" robot dance stylings were most welcome indeed.
In other storylines, Bobby (Brian Van Holt) and Travis did some bonding while hunting down balloons for some kind of bizarre contest, and Laurie (Busy Philipps, who has been a standout lately) first taunts and then surprisingly bonds with Ellie over Ellie and Andy's decision to get a nanny. Oh, I did very much enjoy Ellie's attempts to appear to her nanny that she had an actual job, which devolved into her trying to hand a glass of wine to a cop at the park so that she could better hide from the nanny's stroll with the baby.
So I guess there was a lot to take away this week.
Video: Cougar Town, "Feel a Whole Lot Better"
Check out Courtney Cox talking about Cougar Town on The Late Show with David Letterman:
Recap: Cougar Town, "Feel a Whole Lot Better"
Grayson and Jules consider being friends with benefits; Andy hires a nanny; Bobby's plan to make extra cash ends up benefiting Travis.
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