HOLLYWOOD—Courteney Cox-Arquette played neurotic, tidy and over-organized Monica Gellar for years on NBC’s “Friends” delivering laughs to viewer’s homes every Thursday night for more than 10 seasons.  After a brief hiatus from television she’s back to her comedic roots as Jules Cobb on ABC’s “ Cougar Town,” a hilarious sitcom that chronicles the life of a recently divorced woman who journeys back into the dating scene in her 40s. Cox brings that peculiar characteristic to Jules that makes her likable.  She thinks just like the average person, but her actions are never on the same page.  The one-liners that she delivers while trying to stay current in the ever evolving world of pop culture are hilarious; just hearing her utter the words “peace” is enough to send you into a laugh attack for days.  By the way, did I mention she’s on the prowl, hence the series title?  Of course both her relationships with younger man Josh (Nick Zano) and Jeff (Scott Foley) fall flat, as Jules realizes she’s not ready to be in a committed relationship.

Jules has her best friend and neighbor, Ellie (Christa Miller) to lean on when she needs advice, but as Jules discovers Ellie has her own issues with her husband, Andy (Ian Gomez).  She ventures back into the dating scene with the assistance of her younger co-worker, Laurie (Busy Phillips), who happens to know a thing or two about the dating.  Ellie, Andy and Laurie all provide comic relief at just the right moments in the series.

While we all have our addictions in life, Jules addiction is wine.  She can’t go a day without a glass of wine because it makes her the life of the party; her reaction to it is glorious.  So when she vows to give up wine for an entire month she realizes it’s more difficult than she thought.  She realizes she doesn’t need it, but of course she comes to terms that wine is a vital element in her life.  If that isn’t enough, she tackles the difficult task of parenting her teenage son, Travis (Dan Bryd) with the assistance of her ex-husband Bobby (Brian Van Holt).  Their relationship is one that should be admired; you don’t see many couples get along after getting divorced.  He’s the life of the party literally and the voice of reason, despite his irrational ways of thinking.

Courteney brings a sense of realism to Jules, many women in America can easily identify with. Raising a teenage son, battling the inevitable element of aging that we all fear and balancing a career as a real estate agent is a formidable task.  The series is about relationships and the ups and downs that come with it. Not only are issues regarding married couples addressed, but the aspect of single people learning the ins and outs of dating are highlighted.  Discovering what the opposite sex wants is impossible.  Hey, here’s a piece of advice: there’s no clear cut answer.  That’s why relationships require communication and work, which Jules discovers through her neighbor Grayson (Josh Hopkins), a recently divorced middle aged man.  She envies him at first glance because of his ability to get back out into the dating scene with ease as she struggles, but over time the two begin to bond.  Anyone who’s seen the show knows at some point these two are going to discover that they’re more than just friends.

“ Cougar Town” is a comedy series that many at first glance would think glorifies the theory of all older women who age well as being cougars, but that’s not the case.  Cox infuses spirit, exuberance and vitality into her character, Jules, which makes her more than a hot 40-something woman. She is smart, funny, down-to-earth and independent.  She stands on her own two feet, but has family and friends to catch her if she falls.  Courteney isn’t afraid to test the limits of her character even if it means looking like a complete goofball on TV; that’s why it’s called acting and she does it effortlessly and so well.   It’s reminiscent of many traditional family shows, with a bit of edge.  That’s what makes the show so great. “ CougarTown” airs Wednesdays at 9:30 p.m. on ABC.  Thanks Courteney for making your return to your comedic roots, we missed you!