Can Matthew Perry's Mr. Sunshine Fill the Cougar Town Void?

Let me start by saying that Mr. Sunshine is not Cougar Town. But Cougar Town wasn’t really Cougar Town when it started, either — at least it wasn’t the show we know and love today.

So what exactly does this mean for the new ABC sitcom, which is replacing our beloved Cul-de-sac Crew for the next 10-1/2 weeks? Is Mr. Sunshine worth watching while Cougar Town is away?

In a word: Yes. In a few more words: You won’t instantly fall head-over-heels in love with Mr. Sunshine (á la Modern Family), but ABC’s newest Wednesday night offering is a slow-burn comedy and definitely worth checking out — especially if you’re a Matthew Perry fan.

Scoop: Cougar Town Boss Reveals ‘Cliffhangery’ Midseason Hiatus

Perry (who produces and co-wrote the Sunshine pilot) stars as Ben, a loveless, self-absorbed, middle-aged man who runs the Sunshine Center, a San Diego sports arena-like venue, and suddenly realizes he wants more out of life when his friend-with-benefits and coworker, Alice (Better Off Ted‘s Andrea Anders), breaks things off.

The Friends alum is also joined by Allison Janney (The West Wing), his part pill-popper/part racist/part voice of wisdom boss, Crystal, as well as Perry’s Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip costar James Lesure, as the perpetually happy coworker Alonzo. Fellow Studio 60er Nate Torrence plays Crystal’s doofy son Roman, while Lost‘s Jorge Garcia stops by for two episodes as the center’s maintenance man, “Bob-Bobert-Something-or-Other.”

So, why watch? Perry is appealing. Leaving Chandler Bing behind — while still utilizing a majority of his facial expressions and quirks — Perry shines as the jaded boss with a growing heart of gold, proving he’s still got the comedy chops of that little known NBC show he used to frequent. Add to the mix Janney and you’ve got a funny new series that deserves a little time to work out all its kinks. You know, the same courtesy you gave Cougar Town — and look how that turned out?

Cougar Town Boss Teases Extra Content to Get Fans Through the Break

Will we all miss Jules and Co. for the next two-and-a-half months? Absolutely. But is Mr. Sunshine worth checking out in the interim? You bet.

And if you’re still not convinced, there’s this: Do it for Monica and Chandler. Oh yeah, I went there.

Mr. Sunshine premieres Wednesday at 9:30/8:30c on ABC following an all-new Modern Family.

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51 Comments
  1. AWMc says:

    Im definitely willing to give it a try…being a Perry fan, I know i wont be disappointed

  2. klutzy_girl says:

    Checking this show out because I love Matthew so much. Still bitter that Mr. Sunshine is kicking Cougar Town off the schedule for so long.

    It better be good! (Or get cancelled quickly. I don’t care.)

  3. Travis says:

    I saw Mr Sunshine last night and I will be watching everyweek. You really can’t go wrong with Allison Janney and Matthew Perry. The would also be wise to work Jorge Garcia in as a regular cast member and expand his character from the brief guest appearance in the pilot.

  4. jay says:

    This show is actually pretty good. It aired last night in canada and once you get past the first 10 minutes it is decent. should be good once they get over the first couple of episodes

    • Travis says:

      Introducing the characters at the start of a new series can be dull, but even in the first 10 minutes Allison Janney was awesome.

  5. Dave says:

    I’m excited for this one! I love Allison Janney and Matthew Perry, so I’ll be checking this out, and will definitely give it time to develop.

    Just wanted to point out that James Lesure was only a guest star on Studio 60 for three or so episodes, so he’s not really Perry’s costar. Minor correction!

  6. Sam says:

    Am I a bad TV watcher for liking Cougar Town more when it WASN’T Cougar Town? I thought the dynamics between the characters were interesting and unique. Now that they’ve all defined themselves as “friends,” a lot of the fizzle’s gone out of this TV-izzle. At least for me.

  7. Elizabeth says:

    Might want to spell people’s names right. It’s Janney, not Janey.

  8. Ohhh man, really? Did u really have to go Mondler on us? Some of us were really pissed off at Matthew for turning down courtney who invited him to play her BF for 2 episodes on CougarElizabeth Mitchell. U just reminded us of that, ok anyway lukily i did watch it on CTV in Canada and i think it’s ok, i think Cougar was funnier in its first episode but that’s just me… But i am pretty sure Sunshine won’t have better ratings than ougar in that time slot

    • Megan Masters says:

      Sorry, I couldn’t resist, being a Mondler fan myself. :)

    • Emily says:

      To be fair he didn’t so much turn down an appearance on the show he just didn’t think they should play love interests because he thought it would be too repetitive of Monica/Chandler. But I agree with the sentiment and would have loved to see them reunited!! I’m still keeping my fingers crossed for a Friends reunion movie OR at least like a tv special or something.

  9. raelee514 says:

    I love Matthew Perry, which is why I’ll be there, I kind of prefer traditional sitcom format.

  10. topoopon says:

    Andrea Anders has the kiss of death on her. And I find her spunky and gorgeous, but man, everything she’s in goes to crap. “Joey,” then, “…Ted,” now: “Sunshine” which I predict will last half a season and a few more.

    • John says:

      Hey, hey, hey hey hey…Better off Ted did NOT go to crap…it died tragically young, and still beautiful.

    • Kristine says:

      Jennifer Aniston had the kiss of death on her before Friends too. I love Andrea Anders. Something about her delivery is hilarious to me! Can’t wait to watch this show although I will be sad until Cougar town comes back, I need my snarky Elie

    • Emily says:

      I love how interelated this all is with the Friends cast as Andrea is still dating Matt Leblanc. Can we please have a Chandler Joey reunion on the show!!! Bring the Matty LB and Matty P back together again!!

  11. topoopon says:

    When I said “went to crap” I just meant cancelled early, not became crap.. Sorry.

  12. Luke says:

    Watched the pilot. It aired in Canada monday night. This show is amazingly awful. You see it all in the first 2 minutes. Watch Perry’s character talk to the kid in the opening scene. It’s a shame these people were allowed to make and put this on tv. ABC you suck.

  13. Ann says:

    I love that Matthew Perry’s Mr. Sunshine is what replaces Cougar Town for the time being. It’s got so much talent in the cast that it’s absolutely worth checking out. Expectedly, the first few episodes probably won’t be perfect. But, I agree, look what happened when Cougar Town finally got its footing: amazing TV. No need for convincing here, although reminding me of the Monica & Chandler thing was certainly helpful.

  14. Snsetblaze says:

    By the way, Matthew Perry’s character doesn’t own the arena. He manages it. If he did, he wouldn’t have a boss.

    I am looking forward to this series. I was one who loved Studio 60.

  15. Ivet says:

    I have a question. Is ABC expecting high ratings? Cause the first episode aired on monday (CTV) and since then the episode is available online.
    (oh and also all the new episodes will first air on ctv-go online-then air on abc)
    sorry but the ratings wont be that good :/

  16. Allison N says:

    I am definitely tuning in!

  17. Liltroublehp says:

    COUGAR TOWN SHOULD STAY ON!!!!!! SCREW MR. SUNSHINE!! PUT IT ON A DIFFERENT NIGHT!!!!!!

    • Kay says:

      I agree with you this BS., I not put it on another nite., I rather watch reruns of Cougar Town then that guy.., Every time I show a show they wanna try something else or new.. I can’t have a glass a wine to Mr. Sunshine…. before you know it they will try to replace Modern Family…. :(

  18. t says:

    I agree about cougar town,it has definitely grown on me. But my ultimate favorite is The Middle. Love the Hecks’

  19. Dans says:

    If you had any sense, you would know you are wrong, Megan Masters. You suck. BTW, you’re ugly.

  20. Dans says:

    Go to Modern Family. You may get a laugh there. This is some bull**it show.

  21. Tara says:

    I am super upset that Cougar Town is being replaced! I look forward to that show all week.. GGGggrrrrrrr

  22. patti riel says:

    First time I have ever what happened to one of my favorite tv shows..do NOT cancel this show!!!

  23. Didi says:

    I loved (past tense) Cougar Town and I can’t stand Mr. Sunshine. I gave it a very good chance. It’s just not funny. I feel like it was a bait and switch situation. I will look for Cougar Town in the future but I don’t believe it was very wise to stop it for this long. I watch a lot of television and think a good show partially rides on momentum considering how you get interested in the characters.
    Final thought…big mistake of network execs!

  24. aaron says:

    Bring back cougar town!!!!

  25. Roz says:

    WE WANT COUGAR TOWN NOW!!!!

  26. Lynda says:

    I have tried watching Mr. Sunshine, but can not get into it at all. It is not funny, and actually really annoying. Had to turn it off last Wednesday. Very BORING to say the least. I rally miss my Cougar Town. I hope it returns in its spot. Now, my Wednesday Night of abc stops after Modern Family.

  27. Momo says:

    Bring back Cougar Town!! If a show needed to be replaced it should have been “Better with you”.

  28. MikeyD says:

    I’m a HUGE Cougar Town fan, and was wondering what was up with it being gone. Now I understand that it was a personal matter with Courtney and David. So I decided to give Mr. Sunshine a try and holy WOW! This is one incredibly funny show. All of the cast members are immediately lovable, and I absolutely LOVE Allison Janney! I’m very please to hear that Cougar Town will be returning, although I think they should have kept it in the Wednesday night timeslot, and dumped “In The Middle”. That show is crap! IMHO, ABC Wednesday night’s line-up should be “Better With You”, “Modern Family”, “Mr. Sunshine” and “Cougar Town”. What a night of comedy THAT would be! :) Anyone else agree?

  29. D says:

    I do like Mr. Sunshine..but I want Cougar Town back after Modern Family please. I think Mr. Sunshine should be put in the slot before Modern Family..then the line would be Fabulous.
    The Middle
    Mr. Sunshine
    Modern Family
    Cougar Town
    Oh yes..that would be a very nice line up!
    U can keep “Better with You”.

  30. lyndsay kauffman says:

    yes, please do not let cougar town be cancelled. It is a Weekly Wednesday thing for my husband and I to watch the Wednesday night line up! Mr. Sunshine is good and funny but please let it find another time slot on a different night. Thanks!

  31. Antonio says:

    Bring cougar town back……

  32. Carl says:

    To me Janney is the whole show period and the only reason I’ve tuned into Mr. Sunshine. Serially though, it’s not holding my interest. Cougar Town not only held my interest but I truly looked forward to hanging out with the CT crew every week and I made time for the show each week… something that very rarely happens with me due to my busy schedule. Just bring Cougar Town back to Wednesday after Modern Family where it rightfully belongs.

  33. Donna says:

    ‘Do it for Monica and Chandler’….awesome! :) I like Mr. Sunshine, but I LOVE (and miss terribly) Cougar Town!

  34. howyoudoin says:

    Did Cougar Town finish? I had no idea! :( I’ve seen all the episodes of Mr. Sunshine, and as a Matthew Perry fan and lovers of TV I have got to say that i LOVED IT! Matthew is still very cute and sexy :P I can’t wait to see the show here in Spain :)

  35. L.G.Schollenberger says:

    Mr. Sunshine will never be able to replace COUGAR TOWN.Mathew Perry ,as always , is quite humorless and the supporting cast is boring as the cast of The Middle.

  36. Charles Oakey says:

    Mr.Sunshine is boring.

    Bring back Cougar Town!

  37. Joshua says:

    THey cant cancel mr sunshine!

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