Cougar Town & New Adventures of Old Christine Critiqued.

by Meredith O’Brien


They both have long brown hair that’s got a killer shine. They’re petite and wear fashionable, form fitting attire. Both are divorced and have one child. They’re working mothers who are insecure about the dating scene, and lack confidence in themselves and in their appeal to the opposite sex despite the fact that they’re attractive. They are two fictional portrayals of divorced fortysomething women who serve as focal points for two half-hour comedies on major TV networks. The actresses portraying these divorcees are veterans of long-standing, beloved 1990s sitcoms.


That’s where the similarities end. Whereas one character is kooky, self deprecating, relatable and funny, I find the other to be not at all relatable and more than a bit sad to watch. The characters in question: Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ Emmy-winning Christine Campbell from The New Adventures of Old Christine and Courteney Cox’s Jules Cobb from the new show Cougar Town. Unfortunately for Cox, whose show just premiered on ABC, I had a very negative reaction to Cougar Town, while I really enjoy Old Christine’s season five opener.


Why, I wondered, was I so put off by Cougar Town? Well, there’s its name, Cougar Town. I’ve read all about how single fortysomething women are trying to “take back” the phrase “cougar”– used to describe predatory older women preying on younger men – and make it a positive thing, a rallying cry of sorts for women to re-assert their strength through their sexuality, kind of like the confident Samantha Jones from Sex and the City. But on Cougar Town, Jules Cobb is nothing like Samantha Jones.


Meredith, I've been waiting to comment on your post until I watched tonight's episode. Wow,talk about disappointing! It was absolutely horrible. I can't believe the lovely and talented Courtney Cox signed on to star in such a sub-par tv show. I have plenty of 40+ friends who are single and fabulous. They would be insulted with Cox's portrayal.


I was so uncomfortable watching Cougar Town, bummed that it was so bad because I really like Cox. Your review definitely makes me want to Tivo New Adventures of Old Christine so thanks for that.



Why aren't men slapped with such labels? Why are only women pegged and put into a certain category? I just don't get it.

I'm a 41-year-old working mom who is sick and tired of being called "this" and "that".

Aren't you ladies?



I could not agree more with this commentary. I hated Cougartown and was embarrassed for it and that Courteney Cox was given such a bad script! The writers should be put on the back-burner to write a show about pathetic men in their 40s. The show isn't funny and the plot is going nowhere. As for the references to "over-the-hill" 40 year old divorced women, I personally believe that 40 is fabulous and Courteney Cox is a depiction of how good one can look at 40. She should be showing the world that you can feel good to about yourself, your accomplishments and your life and your independence (no matter whether you're married or not). The show stinks and it is now banned from our house. ugh.