As for me, I never even thought the two would get together- for me it played out pretty naturally. Audrey had a high-school crush on a dashing, older man, especially considering her own (non)relationship with her dad. And of course Cooper was attracted to her, who wouldn't be? But as far as him being interestred in a relationship with her, I don't think so. Think of when you were in high-school, and what you would have thought about a guy in his thirties with one of your classmates. To me, it just seems wrong & creepy.
Yes, in theory it's creepy, and they would probably not get them together in the conventional sense, but just continuing the pull between them (afterall, even if their ages were more appropriate, it's a death to get any two people together on a show -you keep them apart). But in terms of writing, their connection is foreshadowed all throughout the series, the ground work is laid for the two to be connected in a narrative form. "Diane, Windom Earle is missing... I have also learned Audrey Horne is missing. I'm unable to focus on clues or evidence, but only the content of her smile." -Ben's warning to Cooper to stay away, only to return to him the next episode, "You and Audrey have a special relationship..." It goes on and on. Just from a basic storytelling point of view, things are set up for a viewer to get hooked into. What if they had Cooper get interested in Ping Pong in episode four and stopped researching Laura's death, it wouldn't make sense from a storytelling point of view. The writers/creators had a thread but had to alter it from their original vision.
dugpa, I've only checked out the pilot and some second season episodes and no "next time..."
God, I love this music. Isn't it too dreamy?