Courteney Cox’s Show Cougar Town to Change Its Name

17 June 2010


The term ‘cougar’ was originally coined as a light-hearted way of describing an older woman dating a younger man. Think Madonna prowling around with Jesus, or Demi Moore being pawed by red carpet arm candy Ashton Kutcher. In short, glamorous and sexy women who gave their younger rivals (twenty-something ‘kittens’) a run for their money. Not any more. Now many believe it’s become a derisory term, with cougars considered sad rather than seductive (Demi recently told W magazine ‘I really hate that expression.’). And it seems the makers of Courteney Cox Arquette’s critically acclaimed TV show Cougar Town agree.
In an unprecedented move, they’re planning to change the name because they think it’s putting viewers off. Executive producer Bill Lawrence said: ‘[The studio] find too many instances of testing of people saying they would never watch a show called Cougar Town... and then they screen an episode and people go, “Oh, I would watch this show”.’
No other major TV show has changed its name with one successful series under its belt, but Lawrence argues that Cougar Town now bears no resemblance to the first few episodes anyway, when Courteney’s character Jules would chase after young men. Now it’s become more of an ensemble comedy about her and her friends (hmmm, sound familiar?). Is the term cougar really that bad? Should Cougar Town change its name? And if so, to what? Tell us what you think.

- Michelle Davies


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