Remote Patrol: "Cougar Town"

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

First things first - the name. How can any self-respecting TV fan say they watch a show called Cougar Town without dying of embarrassment? I haven't been able to mention the new Courteney Cox vehicle without giggling yet.

Then there's the actual show. I felt embarrassed while watching it, too, and it's not because I'm prudish about sexually explicit dialogue. It's because everybody involved with this show is trying way too hard.

There's some interesting story potential in a newly divorced fortysomething being back on the dating market at the same time as her teenage kid (Dan Byrd of the CW's unjustly ignored Aliens in America). But a setup that involves mom lusting after her son's classmates might not be the best way to approach it.

Having mom crack jokes about engaging in lesbian sex to her son is definitely not. Slapping sexed-up pictures of Cox on real estate signs that middle schoolers steal for masturbatory purposes is definitely not.

In the pilot episode at least, the idea seemed to be to follow one "OMG, did she really just say/do that?!" moment with another then another in rapid succession. That's not sharp writing, it's desperate writing.

Cox is a talented comedienne, but here she's at her most manic. She and the show need to dial it down a notch or three.

All that said, I'm predicting this thing's going to be a hit.

"Cougar Town"

9:30 p.m. Wednesdays, ABC

Grade: C-