Could "Ways To Be Wicked" be one of the finest Cougar Town episodes of all-time?
Without a doubt, yes.
As I’ve said (many times) before, the show is at its best when it combines humor with character growth because that offers the best of both worlds. No one wants to watch a series years down the line where the characters are exactly the same and have made no personal advancement; it gets old. A lot of cards were in play this week, but most of that growth centered on Ellie and Laurie.
Ellie’s mom, played by Susan Blakely, lived up to all expectations. The apple doesn’t fall very far from the mean tree, and watching her tear people down like her daughter made me much happier than I should have been. But who doesn’t like watching people be cruel? Even Jules, the nicest person ever, became drunk with power as she attempted to get Mama Ellie to say something nice about her daughter.
With a little advice from Chick, Jules realizes that even though family is bound by blood, it’s sometimes better to build your own family with the people who truly love you for you. Which is the case for Ellie. As much as Ellie tried to bond with her mom, and as nice of an act as Betsy puts on for her gang, sometimes it’s better to cut off family.
The other character with some personal growth is Laurie. We’ve watched each season as she matures, making more adults choices and generally wanting to be better person. First with the house, then she was willing to play with Travis’ emotions to make sure he went back to school.
This week, we learn she’s very good at baking and cake decorating, and has a dream of running her own cake shop, Krazy Kakes. However, Laurie is so afraid of trying - or failing, really - she’s willing to continually put it off. As hysterical as Laurie is, I love when a few of her layers peel back because there is so much there. Busy Philips can do comedy and drama so well, and when she can do both in an episode and really let all of the wonderfulness that is Laurie shine, it makes the episode that much more enriching.
A few more thoughts:
- Cougar Town finally lived up to its title after years of trying to deny it. A Cobb family outing at Travis’ school led them to stealing the cougar statue.
- The dog cake was absolutely adorable.
- The running gag of terrible Stan continues with mailbox dismemberment.
- Laurie being absolutely terrified of old people? Priceless.
- The Civil War pose.
- I won’t be surprised at all when Jules and Ellie run away together.
What did you think of tonight’s Cougar Town? Let us know what you think and then head over to our Cougar Town quotes page and vote on our many favorites!
Nick McHatton is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.Tags: Cougar Town, Reviews