Anderson Cooper and Courteney Cox

Courteney Cox believes that "everything is better" with ranch dressing, but that may not be the case with Anderson Cooper.

On Tuesday's Anderson, Cooper surprises the Cougar Town star with a huge bowl of her favorite salad condiment and watches as she dips veggies and guzzles the bowl. It's awkward, weird and, frankly, lame as far as talk show surprises for guests go.

Which begs the question: Is Cooper trying too hard?

Check out photos of Anderson Cooper

While Anderson has been renewed for a second season, the show is hardly a hit, hovering around 1 million viewers and routinely getting beaten by daytime rivals like The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz and Jerry Springer. Conscious of the struggles, the show has brought in a new executive producer and changed the format, featuring multiple segments instead of one — like last week's equally, if not more, kooky segment in which Cooper gave the Toddlers & Tiaras mothers the same pageant makeovers their daughters get.

It was always going to be tough for a hard-hitting newsman to go the soft news and tabloid-frenzy route, but we know Cooper can entertain us with the less serious stuff, so what gives?

Do you think Cooper is trying too hard, or is he still just trying to find his daytime footing?

Watch a clip of Cooper, Cox and the ranch dressing below: