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Ian Gomez

The Delights of 'Cougar Town,' with Bonus Penny Can Secrets from Ian Gomez

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 3rd 2010 2:15PM
If I could make one command -- an edict that every TV viewer would have to follow -- I would direct the people of Earth to give 'Cougar Town' (9:30PM ET Wednesday, ABC) another chance. (I'd also ask you to give FX's very enjoyable 'Terriers' a try, if you haven't already. Yes, I know that's two commands. Work with me here.)

Last week's 'Cougar Town' may end up being one of my favorite episodes of television of the year. The Halloween installment of the show was delightfully written and acted and featured a terrific guest performance from 'Scrubs' star Ken Jenkins as Jules' dad. If you gave up on 'Cougar Town' last year or never gave it a shot, that's the episode to watch (there are seven episodes, including the Halloween one, here, and a previous piece singing this sterling comedy's praises here).

This week's episode features a prominent story line for Jules' neighbor Andy, who's played by Ian Gomez. Given that knowledge, I concocted a plan make Gomez reveal his penny-can secrets and other intel about the show.

Here are Seven Things That Ian Gomez Revealed About 'Cougar Town':

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'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.

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'Cougar Town' - 'Wake Up Time' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 15th 2010 10:51AM
Courteney Cox and Dan Byrd in 'Cougar Town' - 'Wake Up Time'(S01E20) Because of the loose nature of the latest episodes of 'Cougar Town,' it's a show that's become very difficult to review.

I can scramble around, trying to write down every funny line that was uttered, which won't give me a chance to really take the show in like I should. But if I take the show in and just absorb it for the plots and characters, I'm finding that I sit in front of my computer to write and can't recall any particularly strong plotlines to talk about. They feel more like plot threads, which are hard to grab and hold onto.

This week those plot threads were a little stronger; they were more like plot ropes. Which, in light of the funny but head-scratching episodes we've seen in the last few months, gives me hope that a balance is being struck.

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'Cougar Town' - 'Everything Man' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 1st 2010 11:29AM
Josh Hopkins and Sheryl Crow in 'Cougar Town' - 'Everything Man'(S01E19) Usually, when I review a show, I try to incorporate some of the key quotes into my reviews. This method works well for shows like 'How I Met Your Mother' and 'The Office,' and it worked well for Bill Lawrence's other show, 'Scrubs.' But 'Cougar Town' just doesn't lend itself to heavy quoting.

Not that the episodes aren't full of funny lines -- who wouldn't laugh at the term "pursey-whipped?" But when I watch the show, I'm more interested in how the characters are relating to each other and how the ensemble comes together from week to week. I'm just fascinated by the transformation this show has undergone in its first season, from a show centering on Courteney Cox and her character's issues with dating younger men to more of a show about a loving -- albeit a bit odd -- extended family. And this episode was one of the best illustrations of that transformation.

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'Cougar Town' - 'Turn This Car Around' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Mar 25th 2010 12:02AM
Sheryl Crow and Josh Hopkins in 'Cougar Town' - 'Turn This Car Around'(S01E18) Is it weird of me to think that the less I see of Courteney Cox in an episode, the more I like it?

Don't get me wrong; since this show has settled into being an ensemble show instead of being just about Jules Cobb, Cox's performance has become more nuanced and realistic. But what's also been happening is that the surrounding characters' stories have become more interesting, while Jules stays the same wine drinkin' fool she's been since day one.

So tonight, when Jules vows to not drink wine for a month, we saw what happens when Jules Cobb turns into Monica Gellar. It wasn't pleasant, but it also wasn't as annoying as it seemed to be portrayed. More on this later.

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'Cougar Town' - 'What Are You Doin' In My Life?' Recap

by Isabelle Carreau, posted Mar 4th 2010 1:05AM
Cougar Town(S01E16) "That woman happens to be my family." - Laurie about Jules

I've been enjoying these last few episodes of 'Cougar Town' because the supporting characters have been fleshed out and have become a more central part of the show. This week was no different, as we not only met Laurie's mother but we also learned new tidbits about all characters, including Jules' real estate nemesis, Barb.

Another upside of this week's installment was the appearance of Beverly D'Angelo as Laurie's mother. Not only was it great casting because D'Angelo does look like she could be Busy Philipps' mother, but also because the 'National Lampoon' actress had the comedic acting skills needed to play Sheila, a superficial and bad mother.

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'Cougar Town' - 'When a Kid Goes Bad' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Feb 11th 2010 11:40AM
Dan Byrd, Courteney Cox, Christa Miller, and Busy Philipps in 'Cougar Town' - 'When a Kid Goes Bad'
(S01E15)
If you want to see evidence of how much a show can change in its first season, look no further than this week's guest star, Barry Bostwick.

He's been among the Bill Lawrence Players for almost fifteen years now, since he was cast as Mayor Randall Winston on 'Spin City.' As Lawrence has said, that show so completely changed focus during its first season, from a romantic comedy to a workplace/government comedy, that the part of one of its stars, Carla Gugino, was cut halfway through that year.

Last night's episode really brought home the fact that in quick order 'Cougar Town' has become much more than what the show was supposed to be about when it debuted. The world surrounding Jules Cobb has now expanded to the point where we see where Andy works, we know Laurie's last name (Keller? Hope she's not related... ) and see enough mixing of characters to make us want to see more.

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Review: 'Cougar Town' - 'All the Wrong Reasons'

by Joel Keller, posted Feb 4th 2010 11:21AM
Courteney Cox and Christa Miller in 'Cougar Town' - 'All the Wrong Reasons'(S01E14) Ever watch an episode and think the writers wrote it just to address the gripes of its fans? That's the way I felt while watching this one. It was an episode that had more chuckles than laughs, but it addressed the stories of two characters who have probably gotten the shortest end of the character development stick so far: Ellie and Laurie. So, for that, the episode stood out.

Let's start with Laurie. For most of this first season, we've seen her as nothing more than a West-Central Florida wannabe version of Lindsay Lohan. So it was refreshing to see that she's actually grown a conscience, and is willing to admit to it. It's a good thing, because a caricature-heavy Laurie would be tough to take in the show's already-secured second season.

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Review: Cougar Town - Stop Dragging My Heart Around

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 21st 2010 11:52AM
Courteney Cox and Brian Van Holt in Cougar Town: Stop Dragging My Heart Around(S01E13) Wow. Didn't think I'd miss so much in one week. But the episode I had to pass on to Isabelle because of the TCAs was full of character movement; Jules breaks up with Jeff because she doesn't want to be tied down, Laurie and Grayson hook up because of their various relationship issues, and Andy gets a lot of agita from keeping all the group's secrets.

So to see it all play out this week made me a little bit uneasy, but that's a good thing. This show needed some raised stakes among its ensemble, even if we're starting to set up one of those eye-rolling situations where people start to sleep with each other and always end up finding out. Hopefully, this is something that will be examined in dribs and drabs and doesn't dominate the storytelling in the future.

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Bill Lawrence on the Cougar Town renewal and Scrubs missteps - TCA Report

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 16th 2010 11:06AM
Bill Lawrence at the Winter 2010 TCAsDuring ABC's portion of the press tour (which feels like a month ago already), the network had its Wednesday night comedy showrunners on for a panel. Surpisingly, Bill Lawrence actually let Steven Levitan of Modern Family and Eileen Heisler and DeAnn Heline of The Middle speak for a good portion of the time, though he had a few things to say himself, not the least of which was that Conan's letter saying no to 12:05 on NBC was a "ballsy" move.

You knew I wouldn't pass up the opportunity to speak to Bill while he was there, especially with Cougar Town getting picked up for a second season and the new Scrubs trying to find its way after a shaky start. The conversation we had is after the jump.

(Oh, and it's always amazing to me that I can talk to Lawrence for maybe 15 minutes, cut out 3500 words, and still have 2500 words left. The man can talk a blue streak.)

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Review: Cougar Town - Scare Easy

by Isabelle Carreau, posted Jan 14th 2010 12:54AM
Cougar Town(S01E12) "Are you two in love?"

Is love in the air? This week marked the moment in Jules and Jeff's relationship where they had to reflect on their couple status and decide if they wanted to be exclusive or not.

In the meantime, Bobby and Grayson reminisced about their respective marriages and what went wrong. While love was in the air, then not, then yes, for Laurie.

Oh and Andy divulged a big secret but, sadly for him and that big ball of fire he has in his chest, another one was added to the pile!

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Review: Cougar Town - Rhino Skin

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 7th 2010 10:24AM
Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox in Cougar Town : Rhino Skin(S01E11) I have to open this review by saying I've never been a big fan of Lisa Kudrow's work. Phoebe, for the most part, was my least favorite character on Friends, and Kudrow always struck me as the kind of actor who plays one role really well, then just plays variations on that role for the rest of his or her career. When you like that signature character, you're fine with it. But when you don't, it just becomes grating.

Any role I've seen Kudrow in just reminds me of Phoebe, and the role she played last night, as mean skin doc Amy Evans, just felt like Phoebe when she was in one of her bad moods. So the overhyped Friends-reunion part of the episode didn't do much for me, for a lot of reasons. But the rest of the episode was just more evidence that this is quickly becoming one of the best ensembles on TV.

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Review: Cougar Town - Mystery Man

by Joel Keller, posted Dec 10th 2009 11:28AM
Scott Foley and Courteney Cox in Cougar Town: Mystery Man(S01E10) It's interesting; the entire time I was watching this episode, I really couldn't pinpoint any comedic highs or annoying lows. It was just a "nice" episode. But that's not a bad thing. After spending nine episodes careening from one kind of show to another, it was good to see an episode that just slowed down, let the characters breathe, and showed why this is becoming such a good ensemble.

Oh, and it gave us a chance to see another one of the Bill Lawrence Players: Scott Foley. Forget The Unit or Felicity; I always thought Foley's best job was as the awkward Sean on Scrubs. So it's good to see him back in the fold again. And judging by the story he's in, he's going to be around for awhile.

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Review: Cougar Town - Here Comes My Girl

by Joel Keller, posted Nov 26th 2009 12:40PM
Busy Philipps and Courteney Cox in Cougar Town: Here Comes My Girl(S01E09) Two things I'm starting to realize about Cougar Town:

1) The more the show concentrates on the ensemble and less on Jules, the funnier it is, and

2) We really need to see more interaction between Courteney Cox and Dan Byrd.

This episode had essentially the same formula as the barbecue episode from a few weeks ago: bring everyone together under Jules' roof and let them bounce off one another. And it worked once again. Instead of a barbecue, of course, the occasion was Thanksgiving (in Florida can you have a barbecue three weeks before Thanksgiving). There's only one slight, itty-bitty problem with what went on this week. But it's a problem that I hope leads to some good things.

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Review: Cougar Town - Two Gunslingers

by Joel Keller, posted Nov 19th 2009 12:05PM
Courteney Cox in Cougar Town: Two Gunslingers(S01E08) It does seem like we're still in the "unsteady footing" stage of this series, doesn't it? For every episode like "Don't Come Around Here No More," which shows the cast gelling and gives us the glimmer of hope that the show will become a really good ensemble, we have episodes like this one, which are at times funny and at other times irritating.

Commenters have told me to stop obsessing over the fact that Courteney Cox's character of Jules is at her most annoying when she's dealing with her "over 40" issues. But I just can't; that's when the show is at its most sledgehammer-in-your-face irritating, with Cox acting to the rafters. This episode showed that quite a bit -- I could have used less of Jules desperately trying to convince people she could pass for 34 -- but it also showed that, when Jules isn't worrying so much about her age, Cox does a pretty nice job of making Jules less of a cartoon.

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