We think it's time to retire "cougar" from our cultural vernacular.
You know, when we first heard that Courteney Cox had signed on to play a 40-year-old divorcée in ABC's Cougar Town we thought: "Hm. OK. Sounds a bit tired and generic, but nothing can top that mess Dirt."
In case you were reading War and Peace, Dirt was a horrendously written piece of garbage on FX where Cox tramps around like a young, virile Miranda Priestly working at a gossip magazine in L.A. Pretty people in paradise working at a glossy about pretty people in paradise. It sounds impossible to do, but somehow FX found a way to make it unwatchable even on mute.
We had the pleasure of viewing a few teaser clips of Cougar Town and unfortunately it appears Courteney has signed onto another lemon. Poor Courteney, desperately in search of another Monica-in-the-rough and unable to find it.
It's pretty horrible for a lot of reasons, but really what screws with us most is this cougar word. What started as a sort of an empowering idea—women over 40 bedding, young, hot men—has corroded into an annoying blanket statement about women over 40 who date. Period. How To Love Like A Tough, Southern Chick
For instance, Cox—as Jezebel points out—looks as hot as she did 10 years ago on Friends. In fact, we think she looks even hotter than she did dancing in that Bruce Springsteen video in 1984.
Regardless, the writers insist on framing her as this insecure nutcase who a.) stands in front of the mirror dissecting all her imagined sagging body parts b.) makes jokes about having sex with her son (!!!!) because she hasn't gotten any in so long c.) can't hold a coherent conversation with a young, hot guy at a bar because she's so old and out of touch and d.) ends up dragging him home, and makes him crackers and cheese. Because, you know, she's a mom and that's what moms do.
In our mind's eye, a true cougar is a Blanche Deveroux/Samantha Jones/Graduate-era Anne Bancroft type of a character. At least get the cliche right. She's strong, raspy, unapologetic, wears the pants and swigs young men straight from the bottle like she does her wine. Bam.
Oh, and surprisingly, all these aforementioned women were dreamt up, created and revered back when cougar was just another word for mountain lion. Go figure.