Welcome back to “Titles are Hard” Cougar Town! In “You Don’t Know How It Feels,” Jules claimed to hate Halloween as she put the finishing touches on a vomiting jack-o-lantern that looked like Laurie on a Saturday night. Jules’ father Chick was comin’ to town and he was a Halloween nut! Guest star Ken Jenkins was a true delight, even though at first it was somewhat jarring to see the former Dr. Bob Kelso from Scrubs pounding cans of beer instead of engaging in deep conversations with muffins. I loved how Chick got such a huge kick out of Laurie’s various antics. The artist formerly known as Octomom spent the episode luring Travis back into the spirit of Halloween, while one-shoed Bobby had to prove his commitment as a potential legal guardian to Baby Stan. But this episode was really about two things: costumes and crying. “Happy Halloween, bitch. Boo.”
Crazy costume time! Bobby’s “Windy Guy” was my favorite — a few times I cracked up just from zeroing in (bageling in?) on his erect, windswept tie. Are any men reading? You should do this! Perfect last-minute costume. Ellie and Laurie dressed up as and acted like over-the-top versions of each other, to outstanding comedic effect. Andy fulfilled his destiny of becoming Burt Reynolds, and Travis foreshadowed what could be his destiny by dressing as Andy. (“My wife’s too hot for me! I’m Cuban but I don’t speak Spanish!”) All Grayson had to do was throw on his Prince costume and be handsome. And Barb — welcome back, Barb! — hit a new low by exposing her skanky black underwear (the same kind Chick used to wear around the house) from the back of her haystack/Shredded Wheat costume.
In accordance with standard sitcom law, the mysterious Bear With a Salmon Tie stealing everyone’s drinks and “not even eating” their snacks all night obviously turned out to be Jules’ father. And she knew it! Outside, he held out his big bear arms for a hug — just like he used to when she was little — and they had a magically meaningful bear-princess moment. June Bug reminded Chick of his late wife (I loved Jules’ flicker of gratitude after he said “when she was young”), and he missed her so much. This scene was a major tearjerker, and the cut to Bobby announcing that he couldn’t wait for Ellie, Andy, and Jules to die so he could assume custody of “Rick” — just after Chick remarked on what a “beautiful family” she’d built — was brilliant.
Oh! Candy corn!
NEXT: The episode’s 10 best quotes/moments!