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October 23, 2014

'Cougar Town' - 'Letting You Go' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 29th 2010 10:02AM
Courteney Cox, Brian Van Holt, and Dan Byrd in 'Cougar Town' - 'Letting You Go'(
(S01E21)
Jules Cobb is TV's creepiest mom, but in a good way.

We've known from the beginning of this series how close she is to her son Travis; it's a twisted 'Gilmore Girls' situation, where a young mom is relating to her kid more as a buddy than as a mom. But thrown into the buddy mix is Jules' paralyzing fear that Travis is going to grow up and leave her all alone. So when you see Jules make a sport out of watching her son sleep -- she calls it the "sleepy show" to Laurie and Ellie when they join in -- you're not nearly as creeped out as you should be.

And that, my friends, is why this show has managed to transcend its original premise and succeed.

Like I've said before, the only aspect of this first season that I don't really buy is the whole Jules-Grayson flirtation. For some reason, it never really felt real to me, more like the usual will-they-won't-they mishegas. So when they finally hooked up at the end of the episode, I didn't throw my fist in the air or say "Finally!" I just shrugged. They just work better as neighbors and buddies, doing things like dancing to Enya in front of Andy while Ellie is asleep. That's where the fun is in their characters. So color me unexcited about this pairing.

However, I do know why it was necessary here. Travis is already pulling away; even though he's decided to go to a school only 20 minutes away, Jules knows that Travis is pulling away from her. She can't stop it. So she was vulnerable. And Grayson has determined he wants to be with Jules. So, in fine TV tradition, a hook-up occurred. Will the feelings continue next week? Probably, but in some weird uncomfortable form.

As usual, the B-stories are always entertaining. My fiancee, who has professed her hatred for this show virtually every week, laughed hard at Andy's desire to hang around his house without Ellie hovering over him making sure everything is clean. Why the men in the neighborhood feel that wearing cowboy hats and blasting to Enya is freeing, though, is beyond me. You really start to wonder sometimes why laid-back Andy is married to future-battle-axe Ellie, but when Ellie is loving, you then realize why he stays. Hopefully, he gets the loving Ellie about half the time.

It was also good to see a few elements come together in Laurie's story: Smith is back and understands her need for drama, and it's always good to see Barry Bostwick back as Smith's uptight dad Roger. Though I liked his reactions to his wayward tee shots and Travis the dog's remarkable ability to retrieve golf balls. Bobby's training method is ingenious, though I can't imagine white-painted meatballs taste any good, even to a dog.

More fun stuff:

-- I wonder if trying to name all of the Gosselin kids is going to take the place of trying to name all of the Seven Dwarfs. And yes, it's not a bad guess to think that Jon is one of the kids.

-- Amazing how the school Travis picked in Florida looks amazingly like the California-based 'Scrubs' medical school, only from a different angle. Good recycling job by Bill Lawrence and crew.

-- When Jules mandates what the hugging order is for Travis, I see a little Monica Gellar come out. Makes me think Courteney Cox also had a little bit of Monica in her. But then when the Cobbs dance the college acceptance dance, I see the side of Cox that thought that marrying David Arquette would be a hoot.

[Watch clips and episodes of 'Cougar Town' at SlashControl.]

[Follow @joelkeller on Twitter.]

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7 Comments

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Johnzo

I'm sad that this show is not more must-see tv for me. The show is entertaining and enjoyable, yet if i miss it, I'm not concerned, like I am with Modern Family, 30 Rock, or The Office. I still haven't figured out why...

May 02 2010 at 4:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
den

I really enjoyed this episode. I would say it's one of the best eps of the season yet, minus the hookup at the end that I didn't really care for but can understand why it happened.

May 01 2010 at 12:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Chris

I think they jumped the shark big time with Jules and Grayson.

April 29 2010 at 9:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ryan

One of my favorite aspects about the show is the totally disturbing relationship between Jules and Travis as mother and son. So I LOVED this episode.

Plus HOW MUCH FUN would dancing to Enya in your underwear and cowboy hat? Let me tell you... FUN.

April 29 2010 at 8:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tony DIMeo

What was the song in the end I think it was in Scrubs?

April 29 2010 at 3:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
meg

the campus is actually the Culver City Studios inside! been there, done that!
I loved this episode and I was waiting for the hook up!
this show knows how to please its fans!

April 29 2010 at 1:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
chrisis123

Not only does the Florida college look suspiciously like the Scrubs med school, the rejection-letter from Travis' safety school at the beginning actually was from Winston University which itself is the med-School from Scrubs (and which was describe as "America's favorite safety school" :)

April 29 2010 at 10:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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