Our favorite cul-de-sac crew returned last night to embrace their inner child (well, Jules’ inner child) with a game of Sardines in a Can. After the gang’s movie night got canceled, Travis told his wine-loving companions that a great way for adults to reduce stress levels is to embrace activities they loved as children. (If this is true, I demand a Lite-Brite be stationed at my desk from here on out.) And although I’m a little disappointed we didn’t get to see Jules feel smart and depressed about the world instead of dumb and happy like always, their game of hide-and-seek was clearly a better idea than movie night.

Meanwhile, Ellie bought herself a new (old) truck for Big Present Day. (I want Big Present Day to be a real thing, because really, who doesn’t want big presents?) Apparently, Ellie had a very strict, girly upbringing, so she went all “balls to the wall” with her tomboy kick. In honor of her new truck and wardrobe, stop and do your best trucker woo hoo! It’s OK. I’ll wait ….

Ellie, who apparently hides a lot, decided to hide for Sardines in a Can and took the opportunity to call out Jules on her bossy-pants, control-freak ways. FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! As you can imagine, Jules didn’t take the news too well.

While the rest of the gang was searching for Ellie, Bobby and Laurie bonded over steak and champagne, a.k.a. beef and bubbles. I, along with Laurie, love me some beef and bubbles both as food and potential detective names. “He’s Beef, a grizzled ex-Marine with a secret—he’s a vegetarian! She’s Bubbles, his plucky, hot partner with a secret of her own—she’s Beef’s daughter! Together, they fight crime, and each week maybe they grow a little bit closer together.” Awww. And although Beef Bobby and Bubbles Laurie didn’t do a very good job of fighting crime, they did grow a little closer when Laurie got Bobby to open up about his new girlfriend, Sam. Bobby didn’t want to bring her around because the cul-de-sac crew is too judgmental, not because Sam has pudding teeth.

At the end of the day, Bobby finally invited Sam to join him and the rest of the gang hiding in Ellie’s truck, and Jules lost their game of Sardines in a Can. Poor Jules. What a rough day! But it’s nothing a date with Big Carl won’t fix.

Other “Lost Children” highlights:

++ The Friend Test: “It’s when you call your entire friendship into question, and force them into doing something.” –Jules

++ “It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No, it’s a depressing exposé about the failing public school system!” –Travis on Waiting for “Superman” (I’m know I’m awful, but I wish this was the real tagline for that movie.)

++ Learning Penny Can is one part geometry, one part marksmanship, and one part core strength. And the introduction of Sissy Can and Moving Target Penny Can.

++ Jules wishing they really had mother/son rodeos.

++ “Since I’m Cuban, it’s almost a hate crime.” –Andy on Grayson tying him to the tree

++ Sam getting in the truck and laying right on top of Andy, and her uncomfortable “I don’t like this!”

++ “Her face made me want to learn how to box.” –Bubbles judging Sam, Bobby’s now-ex girlfriend

What did you think of last night’s Cougar Town? Is anyone else as sick of peeping Tom and horny Barb as I am? I just want to fast-forward every time they pop up. Do you know anyone with pudding teeth? And what childhood activity would you choose to relieve your stress? Let me know in the comments.

Episode Recaps

Cougar Town
Courteney Cox stars in Bill Lawrence’s ensemble comedy
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