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File:Screen shot 2010-05-17 at 9 53 57 PM 3981.jpg

Welcome to Cougar Town. Bum bum ba-da-bummm.

Cougar Town (2009-present) is an ABC sitcom, starring Friends' Courteney Cox.

The show initially centered around Jules Cobb (Cox), a newly divorced 40-year-old mother who tries to get back into the dating game after being out of it for 18 years. However, after roughly five or six episodes, this premise was dropped. Since then, the show has mostly focused on the various shenanigans Jules, Ellie (her snarky best friend and neighbor), Laurie (her ditzy younger colleague), Bobby (her ex-husband), Grayson (UST -ridden single neighbor), Andy (Ellie's husband and Bobby's bromantic best friend), and Travis (her 18 year-old son, the Only Sane Man) involve themselves in, ranging from morning drinking, to the glorious game of Penny Can, to a massive drop-everything $2,000 balloon chase that spans multiple episodes. Can be considered a bit of a Spiritual Successor to Scrubs, in overall tone, humor, and penchant for amazing musical selections.

Each episode has two or three plots and sub-plots, some only given 2 minutes or so (which is good, because it doesn't matter at all.) While it is surrounded with tropes, the "deadbeat dad" tends to be rather wise and the loser son also is not that much of a loser.

Needs More Love, especially since the second and third season are much more polished & refined the first season, with the writers working out the kinks. Fortunately, TBS has picked up the show for a fourth season shortly after ABC cancelled it. It will move to cable in 2013. They now apologize for the title.

Cougar Town features examples of:

  • Actor Allusion: Tons.
    • Jules (Cox) asking her son if he's just faking being sad to make happy news a surprise - frequently done by Joey.
    • Ellie (Miller) losing interest every time the conversation stops being about her, and using the exact phrase"I'm back in!" whenever somebody says something interesting again.
    • Travis noting to Kirsten explaining how she's his escape from 'friends' prison immediately after mentioning Jules.
    • Travis flipping through Jules's yearbook and finding the picture of her dancing with Bruce Springsteen. She proceeds to demonstrate.
    • Travis's college roommate, Kevin, is mentioned as being an "all-state linebacker in high school."
    • Ellie's husband has had 2 vasectomies.
  • Adult Child: Bobby, whose life goal is to party so hard he craps himself on every country.
  • Aloha Hawaii: "Something Good Coming."
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Jules and Bobby take turns at this.
  • Ambulance Cut
  • Anticlimax: Typically, shows will end with some sort of confrontation or right in the midst of that season's climax. Very few follow this series style of resolving every single major conflict and leaving no unanswered questions for next season...
    • Series Fauxnale: A possible example–what with the series' relative obscurity, it was somewhat up in the air as to whether or not it would be renewed.
  • Artifact Title: Even the show knows this. The title gag on a recent episode? "All I want for Christmas is a new title". Shortly followed in their episode after New Years with the resolutions "Embrace our stupid title & lose six pounds".
    • And shortly followed after that in "Lost Children", in which Barb stops Jules and comments that she use to be one of them (a cougar). Jules replies that that's not her any more and dryly snarks that maybe she should just change her name. Same episode then has the title gag be "Do we have to do this joke forever?"
      • In Season 2's finale, the title lasted twice as long, shooting through Florida, over California, and to Hawaii, where the line was "We'll never stop making fun of the name-"
    • Season 3 begins with: "It's still called" above Cougar Town followed with "Yeah, we're not happy about it either." below.
    • Retroactively justified in the season 3 episode "Ways To Be Wicked" when Travis and his housemate Sig explain that the Cougar being the mascot of their college explains their Floridian county's nickname of "Cougar Town".
  • Beach Episode: The first Season Finale ends with the characters having a "no-couples-allowed" beach party.
  • Beta Couple: Ellie and Andy tend to serve this function. Especially apparent in Episode 17, "Counting On You".
  • Big No
  • Bland-Name Product: Coffee Bucks has locations coast to coast.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Laurie, Jules, and Ellie.
  • Bottle Fairy: Jules, Ellie, and Laurie, so much. Ellie and Jules also border on Lady Drunk from time to time.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Andy's hispanic (Cubano), but appears to be a typical middle American white guy until he whips out the Spanish.
  • Butt Monkey: Poor, poor Josh.
  • California Doubling: The palm trees are a dead give away. If you know anything about palm trees. You probably don't.
    • Also, leaving the address numbers painted on the sidewalk instead of the mailbox is much more common in LA than Florida.
      • YMMV on that one. Having delivered pizza in central Florida, this troper knows that it's all over the place how and where street numbers are displayed. Regardless, it's impossible to locate a place on a moonless jungle night. Even when they leave the porch light on. They usually don't.
  • The Cameo: in the second season finale, one of the people in the background on the bar terrace is played by Danny Pudi. That is, until you notice him acting strange and realize (if you also watch Community) that it's not Danny Pudi but *Abed* in a brilliant, subtle piece of cross-referencing (specifically, it refers to a made-up story Abed tells in "Critical Film Studies"). Also a case of Breaking the Fourth Wall.
  • Catch Phrase: Arguably Laurie's "LAUGH!"
    • Andy's "COME ON!"
    • In universe, Andy when he was a stand-up comic in college: "Bitches be loco!"
  • Channel Hop: From ABC to TBS.
  • Character Overlap: In the Hawaiian episode Travis makes friends with Ted from Scrubs.
    • In the same episode Abed from Community cameos (see above).
  • Comically Missing the Point: No one gets it when Ellie, to compliment someone, gives them the tip of an imaginary hat. Jules also usually doesn't get it when someone plays a little game. Also, she really can't play the portmanteau movie game (teens trapped on an island find pirate treasure: Blue LaGoonies).
  • Continuity Nod: Penny Can, the balloon chase, the Cul-de-Sac Crew... this show is fueled by this trope. The second season finale in fact continuity-checks two separate shows from two different networks: see The Cameo above, and Hooch is still crazy.
  • Couch Gag: Playing with the Artifact Title starting in season two.
  • Creepy Child: The chalk children.
  • Dagwood Sandwich
  • Dawson Casting: 18-year-old Travis is played by 25-year-old Dan Byrd. It works, though.
    • His 23-year-old girlfriend Kirsten was played by 30-year-old Collete Wolfe. It didn't really work.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Almost everyone gets a chance to snark at some point, but Grayson, Ellie, and Travis are the most consistantly snarky.
  • Demoted to Extra: Barb was originally Jules' Designated Antagonist, but as the show changed focus her appearances becamed reduced. By season 2 she only had one scene per epsiode and was completely absent from season 3 except for one brief cameo.
  • Dirty Old Woman: Barb's purpose in life is to pop in on Jules at inopportune times and make double entendres one after the other.
  • The Ditz: Laurie and Bobby.
  • Drink Order: Eventually Laurie has just made up names for all the coffee drinks at Coffee Bucks.
  • Dumb Blonde: Laurie and Bobby, again.
  • Empty Nest: Jules has a hard time letting go of Travis when he goes to college.
  • End of Series Awareness: "It'll All Work Out In The End" is about Jules celebrating Thanksgiving in the spring for fear that they wouldn't all be together in the fall.

 Jules: What if we're not around next fall? What if a new group comes in and replaces us? Everybody's goitn to be like, "What happened to the Cul-de-sac Crew? I missed them. And who are these new people? They're not as good."


 Ellie: He is a devil baby! I don't know what happened!

  • Erotic Eating: Apparently, strawberries with whipped cream induce lesbianism.
    • Travis cannot stand to see Jules eating bananas.
  • Ethical Slut: Most of the characters, even if they're mean, are good people. And they all love sex.
  • Expy: Ellie for Jordan, both created (at least partially) by Bill Lawrence and played by his wife, Christa Miller.
  • Genius Ditz: Grayson and Ellie are left wondering why Laurie beats them handily at bar trivia. Apparrently it's because she watches so much Jeopardy. And she cheats.
  • Gigantic Gulp: Big Joe/Carl/Kimo/Lou. Inverted with Little Richard.
  • Halfway Plot Switch: Played straight to the point that the title no longer makes any sense. So much so that they're considering changing it.
  • He Who Must Not Be Seen: Dale
  • Home Porn Movie: Jules and Bobby have one. Andy and Ellie try to make one, but the result is apparently too horrific to watch.
  • Hot Mom: Jules. Seriously. Also Ellie, though her kid is still a baby.
  • Hot Dad: Bobby and Grayson.
  • How's Your British Accent?: Bobby's accent and voice is not his actor's by a long shot.
  • I Call Him "Mister Happy": Bobby named his penis "Little Travis".

 Bobby: I call all my favorite things Travis.

Travis: That's... oddly flattering.

    • Apparently, Barb caller her private parts "big business".
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Each episode is named after a Tom Petty song.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Actually quoted word-for-word.
  • Jerkass: Ellie, oh so much. She does get more heartwarming moments than Jordan, though.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: The opening scene to episode 13 of season 3 has them having a chat talking about why they missed thanksgiving and saying "our schedules got all mixed up, we all went away and no one knew when we were coming back" then saying about not knowing if they'll be around in the fall. Made extra funny as the announcement that the show is moving to TBS (having 2 new seasons each lasting 15 episodes) happened just a few days before.
  • Long List: Laurie's extensive coffee order. Her delivery also makes it Rapid-Fire Comedy.

 Laurie: Oh, hey, Rach. Now, bear with me, I have to order for everyone: Okay, I'll have one Soy Largie, one Teeny Tiny, one Teeny Teeny Tiny Unleaded, one Plain Jane, extra Yum-- what the hell, make it a double Yum-- Uhhh, a Baby Joey, a Midnight with a Full Moon (hold the pumpkin), a medium coffee, I need a Heavy D, in a travel mug, please, two Crazy Ivans, a Sauron's Eye-- also, I need a Damn! and an iced Damn!, a Sneaky Pete, a Double Drip with a snip of whip, and a Frap-Cap, heavy on the (imitating the blender) crcccrcccrcrch! crcrcrrrchcrcrch! Oh, and let's see, what's fresh? Okay, well I'll take three Raisin Happy Muffins, a French Moustache, and-- ugh, a Fart Muffin, that is not for me. Oh, and I forgot to order my own coffee! Can I get a Taye Diggs, which is black and extra strong and smooth, but also very sweet?

Rachel: (stares at Laurie, dumbfounded)


 No, it's not just Scrubs in Florida with a lot of wine.

  • Noodle Incident: "Never press the 'NO' button."
    • Also, the disaster that was the introduction of Travis's college girlfriend.
  • Only Sane Man - Travis, although he does indulge his parents' antics from time to time.
  • Orbital Kiss: Between Bobby and Angie, Travis' Photography professor.
  • Pass the Popcorn: Jules watching Grayson watching "Field of Dreams".
  • Playing Gertrude: Refreshingly averted with Courteney Cox herself, who is some five years older than her character (and Grayson and Bobby, and their respective actors).
  • The Pollyanna: Andy. Laurie and Ellie team up to try and take down his boundless optimism.
  • Pop Cultural Osmosis Failure: A running gag with Jules, who hasn't seen that many movies.
  • Product Placement: Almost insultingly obvious at certain points:
    • The entire cast spends the first five minutes of an episode gushing about Slankets… which they are all wearing.
    • Grayson and Bobby have a discussion about how it's OK for guys to like Greys Anatomy, another show on ABC.
    • "No Reason to Cry" — which contained a three minute discussion on the Diet Dr Pepper logo being on a golf outfit — featured Diet Dr Pepper ads in the show as well as the promos earlier in the night ("Tonight's all new Cougar Town is surprisingly refreshing ... just like Diet Dr Pepper!"). Unlike many other instances this is justified as Bobby is a pro golfer. It is also lampshaded early on in the discussion as Travis makes an aside, saying "Is anyone filming this?". DDP cans are seen in later episodes.
    • Subway starts being featured a lot, too. Travis actually said he could "eat for several months with the $12 in his pocket" (paraphrased) - couldn't have been more obvious.
  • Race Fetish: Laurie wants her online boyfriend who is a soldier in Afghanistan to be black, as that is "super hot". Ellie then comments on this trope.
  • Really Gets Around: Laurie. Possibly the only person who sleeps around more is Barb. Both of them revel in it.
  • Right Through His Pants
  • Running Gag: "Isn't her name 'Tampa'?"
  • Ship Tease: Jules and Grayson, Jules and Bobby, Grayson and Laurie, Laurie and Travis…

 Ellie (to Andy): If you're leaving me for him, don't drag it out. Just do it.

  • Shirtless Scene: Every one of the main male characters has had one.
  • Shout-Out: In the thanksgiving episode, Andy eats a hamburger before Thanksgiving dinner and says that it's like stretching — this was taken almost verbatim from an episode of Friends. In any other case, it would look like a complete rip off, but since Courtney Cox's the lead, we're all good.
    • In the thirteenth epsiode of season one, Jules and Bobby can be seen watching an episode of Scrubs.
    • Andy is compared to Keyser Soze for his skill at manipulating women, with the episode's plot leading quite naturally to his shedding a limp at the end.
    • In the same episode, Ellie refers to Andy as a "sensie," a term introduced on Scrubs to describe an overly-emotionally sensitive man.
    • Ted shows up in the Season 2 Finale, and reveals that Hooch is still crazy.
    • And in an episode's tag, everyone gets into a fake gun fight, with Travis groaning "I love Spaced!" as he "dies."
    • The title gag for the Season 3 episode Down South is "I didn't know it was back on either." -Abed. The following episode Square One has the title "Welcome to Cougarton Abbey".
  • Six-Student Clique: An adult version, natch.
    • The Head: Grayson
    • The Muscle: Bobby
    • The Quirk: Andy
    • The Pretty One: Jules
    • The Smart One: Ellie
    • The Wild One: Laurie
  • Smug Snake: Barb.
  • Sorry I Left the BGM On: "Stop trying to make this into an 80s movie montage!"
  • Stacy's Mom: Jules. The junior high kids are very appreciative of her.
  • Stupid Statement Dance Mix: Jules gets Ellie to make one about Grayson. It's awesome.
  • They Fight Crime: Brought up by Laurie in "Lost Children"
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch: "Cry To Me" stinger but not for the normal reason.
  • Took a Level In Jerkass: Kylie
  • Too Dumb to Live: Out of the group, only Ellie and Travis know that Mexico isn't an island.

  Travis: ...but we drove there.

    • Bobby almost drowned. In his boat. On dry land.
  • Too Much Information: Jules tends to keep on talking until she gets there, especially with Travis.
  • True Companions: They even have a name for themselves: The Cul-de-sac crew. Proved in the second season, when Laurie saying "He's not moving!" is immediately followed by Andy saying his car has a large boot.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Ellie and Andy. Discussed in one episode.
  • The Unintelligible: No one can understand Bobby when he goes full-bore redneck. It turns out, neither can he. He's a mumbly (Bobby: "A bumble bee?").
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Demonstrated by Laurie who changed outfits a dozen times during thanksgiving.
  • Vacation Episode: "Something Good Coming."
  • The Vamp: Barb. Probably at this point the only reason the show still has the title "Cougar Town", and shows up Once an Episode to flaunt her latest conquest in a punny manner.
  • Verbal Tic: Travis, with his weird high-pitched "Ah!" whenever he throws something. (It's HIGH-LARIOUS.) He's probably had it all along, but it has only recently been introduced since it was mentioned by Bobby just beforehand.
  • The Vonda Shepard Treatment: There's a guy in the Aloha Hawaii episode whose greatest skill is that he can take any song and sing it slow and sad.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Jules and Grayson, who have since resolved the tension.