Cougar Town-Make it Better-Brian Van Holt and Josh Hopkins

Cougar Towns getting back into the swing of things. Make It Better” featured Jules’ stubborn struggle to care for her bullheaded father while masking a health crisis. Grayson and Bobby do their best to turn Travis’s neediness into dork appeal.  But it’s the Torres’ dinner with Laurie and Wade that reminds us that rushing to the finish is never a good idea.

The Players:

  • Director: Courteney Cox
  • Writers: Rachel Specter and Audrey Wauchope
  • Cast: Courteney Cox, Christa Miller, Busy Phillips, Dan Byrd, Josh Hopkins, Ian Gomez, Brian Van Holt, Bon Clendenin, Edwin Hodge, Ken Jenkins

Episode Title: “Make It Better”

Jules’ dad Chick comes to visit, while recovering from a broken foot. Bobby and Grayson try to teach Travis how to become a lady’s man.

The Good:

  • Sickly Stubborn: Jules’ narrative came full circle last night. What began as her confusion over Inception and Grease, culminated with the notion that like any good Christopher Nolan movie, life’s open-ended. Using her kidney stone pain to delay her realization that she’ll have to care for her aging father was inspired. We always enjoy seeing Ken Jenkins reprise his role as Chick; any mini Scrubs reunion will do. Props for Ellie’s guess that Jules’ inexplicable stomach pain was cancer; everyone has a friend that believes the disease is the root of all pain. 
  • Landlined: Laurie got it right, “Nobody calls your home phone anymore unless the shizz is supes serious.” In a world where cell phones are king, the spotlight on landlines was a delightful deviation. Although the call to the restaurant was overkill; if Jules really couldn’t make it to dinner wouldn’t contacting Laurie or Ellie directly be best?
  • Tee-boning: Since Ellie made a point to mention Jules is a year late jumping on the Tim Tebow bandwagon, the show can’t lose any points for the belated reference. Although Jules’ mispronunciation was more ignorant that innovative. We’re going to go with it because she made the move her own. Using Tee-boning to conceal her kidney stone pain was a blatantly obvious cover up that only Jules would find ingenious. Plus, how cute was it for Grayson to take a knee while Jules was Tee-boning in pain?
  • Window Doctor: Last week, we celebrated the show’s new use for Andy, the often forgotten member of the Cul-De-Sac Crew. This week, we loved Tom’s new role as the porthole physician. Watching him stab Ellie and Jules in the butt made us realize this shouldn’t be a onetime thing. It gave Jules a chance to harass Tom during surgery, and gave him a wealth of medically creepy comments to make instead of his usual eerie material. Cougar Town would do well to recognize the gem they have and include it in their wheelhouse.
  • The Return of the Playboy: One of the best things about Grayson is his playboy shtick. Since his marriage to Jules, we’ve been worried we’d never see it again. Teaching Travis how to have casual encounters with girls was a great way to bring it back. Pairing the two with Bobby made it possible for him to christen Grayson “Dad number two.”  And we might have missed out on the awkward perfection of Grayson proving how strong his game is by hypnotizing Bobby. When Travis successfully bagged a babe using the McConaughey method the moment was doubly rewarding.

The So-So:

  • Sextronics: What’s worse than a double date? A triple that turns into a double. Especially one that ends in a break-up. While Laurie and Andy’s fight for the right to a sex robot left Ellie nonplussed, it gave Wade the motivation to leave Laurie. Of course his choice to abandon his relationship had more to do with her obsession with Travis’s quest to become a “playa.” We predicted a quick expiration for their, but this feels too fast. Considering she only mentioned Travis twice during dinner, a few more minutes should have been spent fleshing out Laurie’s infatuation with Travis.  Just because we’re on board with the development doesn’t mean they should rush to get there.

The Quotable:

  • “Nobody calls your house anymore unless the shizz is sups serious.” –Laurie
  • “Oh it’s not you. She’s just a horrible person.”–Laurie

Overall:

“Make It Better” was a definite improvement over recent episodes. Although it dealt with the usual serious subject matter, it returned to the general merriment that defines Cougar Town. We’re still angling for some Cul-De-Sac Crew love though; seeing everyone united in hilarity never gets old.

Rating: 9/10

Cougar Town airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. on TBS.

What did you think of this episode?