When I first checked out Cougar Town, the new ABC comedy from Scrubs creator Bill Lawrence and starring Courteney Cox, I was a little concerned. The show was racier than I was expecting, and something in the tone seemed a little off. Apparently, I wasn't alone in that opinion — and apparently, Lawrence is listening. When he took the stage at TCA over the weekend, one of his main messages seemed to be that he knows he has some work to do.
"It's the first time I've ever written a show that I feel like I need outside input [to get right]," Lawrence told me after his session, adding that his staff now has more female writers than male writers. Though his wife (Christa Miller, who also stars in the show) and their friends provide him with a lot of material, he said he still has a tendency to see things from a guy's perspective — like a waxing scene he recently wrote that he said might have gone down the 40-Year-Old Virgin route if he hadn't been careful.
A number of the things that bugged me in the pilot have been reshot: He said the opening scene (which used to feature Cox and Busy Philipps's characters ogling guys at a high school football game) felt "like a cartoon" and has been changed, and he's toned down lines that make it seem like Cox's character couldn't get a date despite looking like, y'know, Courteney Cox. (Now it's more that — as a friend told him — "every single guy at our age is either gay, broken, or dating younger girls.")
To hear what Lawrence thinks of the term "cougar" and why he used it for the title, read more