During the offseason, we are continuing our weekly series discussing thoughts on arguably the best football TV show ever in Friday Night Lights. If you haven’t seen it, there is no better time to start. If you have seen it, there’s no better time to rewatch it. And if you’re like me, and watch an episode or season every year in preparation for college football, you’re right on track. Regardless of which category you fit into, it’s on Hulu, and you can follow along each week (on a Friday, of course) as a different episode from season one will be discussed, from the heartbreaking cliffhanger of the pilot to the final nail-biting game.
Random thoughts in live-tweet form.
- Even Matt’s grandma is getting in the spirit, offering her thoughts on what Buckley needs to do to win.
- The Streets formally file a lawsuit against Coach Taylor. Eric and Tami struggle in their reactions to that.
- The town reacts to the lawsuit news as well. Jason is getting the cold shoulder by some of the people in Dillon, and he found out in the paper rather than by his parents.
- In an attempt to support his dad and repair their relationship, Matt goes to Buddy to appeal to him and see if he can get his dad his job. Buddy is too happy to help.
- Mirroring that scene a bit, Eric goes to Mitch Street to discuss the lawsuit and appeal to their relationship. Eric tries to get him to see a different perspective. Mitch pretty much shuts him down and opens his eyes to the financial reality they are facing.
- Smash tries to impress Waverly, the girl he’s interested in, and show her that he has a life outside of football, although he really doesn’t. But he invites her to double with Matt and Julie at the rodeo.
- Matt’s never-ending care of his grandma leads to him forgetting to meet Julie to study. However, she once again realizes Matt needs support and puts aside her feelings to step in and help him take care of everything.
- On the other end of things, Tyra’s home life is just as chaotic, and she has no support. Her mom’s boyfriend is toxic and abusive, and Tyra drives him out of the house after hitting her mom.
- Julie learns to appreciate her parents and tells them so after seeing all Matt has to deal with and all he has to overcome in his daily life.
- Tyra’s mom laments about how alone she is, and Tyra reminds her that she has her, which shows how distant their relationship is. Again, this comes right after Julie connects with her parents and mirrors that scene with Tyra not being able to connect with her mom, despite her efforts.
- Matt’s dad is struggling to sell cars, and it’s obvious he is out of his element.
- Jason is trying to convince himself that suing Coach Taylor is the right move. Matt’s dad is trying to convince himself that selling cars to be close to his family is the right move.
- Julie brings food for Matt’s family to help him out.
- Matt recognizes his dad is putting in a lot of effort and knows he can’t ask him for more than that.
- Smash doesn’t understand relationships, despite Matt and Julie trying to help him.
- Tyra and her mom are having a good time at the rodeo until their mom’s boyfriend shows up. She takes him back, and Tyra has an honest conversation with her mom about her relationships and gives her an ultimatum.
- Waverly catches Smash in his lying and predictably blames it on her. He blows her off, and she leaves. Smash realizes he is alone.
- Tim apologizes to Tyra for how he acted when they were together, but she can’t take him back after telling her mom not to take her boyfriend back.
- Eric and Jason see each other and don’t interact, as there is now a clear divide in their relationship.
- The next day, however, Jason comes to the football field to meet Coach Taylor and wants to tell him that the lawsuit wasn’t his idea, it was out of his hands, and he will always be his coach. They shake hands.
- Matt goes to talk to his dad about their arrangement. He communicates that it means a lot to him that his dad is choosing to stay, but he wants his dad to do what he loves, be a soldier.
- More mirroring. While Matt and his dad connect, resulting in his dad likely leaving, Tyra and her mom connect, resulting in Tyra staying (boyfriend isn’t coming back), and they grow closer.
- Smash apologizes to Waverly. He admits he likes himself and loves football and attention. He almost confesses how much he likes her, and he lays it all out for her. Waverly seems to be okay with those conditions.
Coach Taylor’s speeches.
- The Panther’s playoff hopes are out of their hands, as Buckley needs to beat Arnet-Mead, the team no one can ever beat.
- Coach Taylor keeps the team focused and working them as hard as possible.
- In the middle of all the relational turmoil, Buckley pulls off an upset, and Dillon clinches a playoff birth. Everyone’s spirits are riding high despite everything else.
Quote of the episode.
“He’s trying. What else can you really ask of anyone?” - Matt Saracen.
Clear eyes. Full heart. Can’t Lose. official counter: 12
Texas Forever official counter: 4
Riggins quitting the team official counter: 1
Coach Taylor calling Landry ‘Lance’ official counter: 2