Tonight I was rudely awakened to that sad fact. First, by a terribly unfunny — and just plain terrible — sitcom called Accidentally on Purpose. Jenna Elfman, an actress two years younger than me who doesn’t look much older than she did the first time I saw her more than 10 years ago on the short-lived sitcom Townies, gets pregnant by a twentysomething guy. In one scene, her baby daddy, actually begins a sentence with “I don’t know how they did it in your generation’s day, but in my generation’s day…”
No, he didn’t!
Jenna’s comeback: “This is my generation’s day. It’s not even noon in my generation’s day.” You go, girl!
In another bit, baby daddy gets into it with Jenna’s boss/boyfriend, played by Grant Show, and calls him “grandpa.” Grandpa! Did I mention that “grandpa” is Grant Show, who played Jake Hanson on the original Melrose Place and looks just as yummy now as he did then?
After Jenna Elfman made me feel ancient, Courteney Cox put the final nail in my coffin with her considerably funnier sitcom Cougar Town (above), which, like Accidentally on Purpose, premiered tonight on South America’s Sony Channel. (Fascinating aside: The show is based in Sarasota, Florida, where I might be living today had I not been offered a post-university internship at People magazine, which I chose over the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.) The running joke is that Courteney Cox plays a divorced fortysomething woman who beds guys half her age. Did I mention that it’s Courtney Cox? She may be five years older then me, but she doesn’t look much different than she did when she was playing Monica on Friends.
Meanwhile, her teenage son doesn’t look much younger than some of the guys I date. (At 24, Dan Byrd, the actor who plays him, is actually a year or two older than most of my recent flings.) And her husband is played by Brian Van Holt, who is my age but looks young enough to be dating one of the Gossip Girls.
When did I become old enough to be an age-related punchline. Courteney Cox so has the right idea. I think I need to go out and find consolation by treating myself to a 25 year old. Why should TV women of a certain age get to have all the fun tonight?