Quick spoilers for tonight's "Cougar Town" coming up just as soon as I get the rolling pin...
It's not at the level "Modern Family" is maintaining right now, but "Cougar Town" has found itself a nice little groove, and the show feels particularly strong in episodes like this one that just throw all the characters together into a situation to see how they bounce off of each other.
In particular, this episode was the biggest, and strongest, focus so far on Jules and Travis's usually awkward, occasionally sweet mother/son relationship, and I thought it did a nice job of illustrating how tricky (if not outright stupid) it is to try to be The Cool Mom to a teenage son.
In and around some of the pathos of that, there was some inspired silliness, like Andy's panic at having to keep a secret from his wife, or the guys getting all pumped to beat three neighborhood kids at basketball. (Note that the girl is on crutches the second time we see her.) The show has also become very good at using music (beyond Grayson's guitar songs), from the hilarious use of Kenny Loggins' "Playing With the Boys" (from this infamous "Top Gun" scene) during the basketball sequence, to the more poignant use of Noah and the Whale's "Give a Little Love" to accompany Travis and Jules silently getting dinner ready (and showing the bond they share, even through all the angst).
There's a warmth to the show now that I'm not sure I would have expected from that pilot. Simply put, I like these people - in part because they make me laugh, but in part just because I like them. Not every TV show has to work that way, but it's how "Cougar Town" is working.
What did everybody else think?