This week marked the end of era of sorts for Cougar Town. Having been dropped by ABC, the show is moving to TBS next season. Kevin Biegel and Bill Lawrence are stepping down as showrunners, handing the reins over to Ric Swartzlander. Cougar Town may never be the same again. But that’s okay, because I can think of no better end to this era than this week’s double-header season finale, “My Life”/”Your World.”
While the first season of the show centred around Jules finding her identity as a recent divorcée, the past two seasons have focused on the cul-de-sac crew accepting the changes in their lives, albeit incrementally. “My Life” and “Your World” didn’t bring those character arcs to a conclusion, but to a natural resting point. Bobby has come to accept that his ex-wife will be happy with a new man. Travis and Laurie understand the seriousness of their feelings for each other. Jules and Grayson have learned to accommodate each other. None of this is earth-shattering stuff, but Cougar Town isn’t about changing the entire planet; it’s about the little changes within the world we create for ourselves. These changes can be scary, but they can be faced with the help of one’s friends. For example, Jules might find it hard to accommodate Grayson’s need for privacy, but the cul-de-sac crew’s re-enactment of Groundhog Day helps her see why it’s important.
So when Jules and Grayson (literally) ride off into the sunset at the end of the season finale, we know that things will never be the same for the two of them. But we also know that they’ll be just fine. They each have the cul-de-sac crew to rely on for support, and they’ll be able to confront whatever challenges face them in the future. I would have been sad if the series had ended here, knowing that I’d never get to follow them and their friends on their next great adventure. But I’d have been satisfied knowing in the back of my head that they’d be alright.
Thankfully, the show is continuing on, though without Biegel and Lawrence at the helm. I’d like to thank them for taking Cougar Town from its questionable beginnings to the status of TV’s best comedy. I don’t know how the show will feel with a different showrunner at a different network. But as this season finale showed, change is sometimes necessary, and though it can be terrifying, with the right friends by your side, it can also be the next step on the great adventure that is life.