With Cougar Town‘s sixth and final season set to air early next year on TBS, we thought it would be fun to look back at the Cougar Town cast and trace their paths in television to America’s favorite wine-soaked comedy – and along the way, unearthed some hilarious and/or obscure projects they previously worked on. Here are some of the gems:
Courteney Cox: Misfits of Science
Back in 1985, NBC got really excited about a new superhero show from The Six Million Dollar Man and The Incredible Hulk writer James D. Parriott called Misfits of Science – so excited, they commissioned a double-length pilot to air in the fall of 1985. After debuting, it subsequently tanked, leaving the air after airing only 15 episodes. Fortunately, NBC remained a fan of Courteney Cox (who had previously appeared in an episode of the network’s failed series Code Name: Foxfire, leading her to audition for Misfits of Science), bringing her back to appear in Family Ties, and eventually, star in Friends.
Josh Hopkins: New York Undercover and Jack & Jill
Before his breakout recurring role on Ally McBeal, Josh Hopkins was a featured performer on two shows, both interesting in their own respective ways. New York Undercover was a well-known FOX cop procedural, known for its weekly musical guests and penchant for killing off main characters; Josh Hopkins was one of many new cast members brought in during the show’s fourth and final season, which followed an alienating season three finale that killed off multiple main cast members. After that was canceled, he moved to The WB for the quickly-canceled comedy series Jack & Jill – a show with an impressive cast listing, including Justin Kirk, Amanda Peet, Jamie Pressly, and Sarah Paulson. It took a few more short-lived series before he made it to Cougar Town (Swingtown, anyone?) but there’s no doubting he found a home in the quirky Cul de Sac community.
Brian Van Holt: John from Cincinnati
Brian Van Holt’s career in television stretches back to the early 90’s (he appeared in an episode of Flipper!), but the most obscure thing he’s starred in to date is David Milch and Kem Nunn’s short-lived HBO series John from Cincinnati, as the heroin-addled adolescent son of the show’s central character, Mitch. A show with existential leanings, supernatural undercurrents, and deeply spiritual foundations, the “surf noir” from 2007 remains one of the strangest (and most oddly engrossing) entries in HBO’s catalog.
Christa Miller: the first issue of Maxim
That’s right: Christa Miller was on the cover of Maxim‘s first issue in 1997, right in the center of her run on The Drew Carey Show, which would last until 2002. When it comes to her acting career, there aren’t many surprises to find: since her debut on the surprisingly progressive 80’s dramedy Kate & Allie, she appeared in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Seinfeld, and Party of Five in bit roles. Her oddest on-screen role to date, then? Probably as Cleopatra on Clone High, the ditzy, self-obsessed drama queen that Abe Lincoln nor JFK can get enough of.