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Friday Night Lights Review S3E4

Hello, Goodbye

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 Netflix (and Peacock), and you can follow along each week (on a Friday, of course) as a different episode from season three will be discussed, from the opening episodes with an up and coming freshman QB all the way to the big game in the season finale.

Random thoughts in live-tweet form.

  • Tyra, Landry, Billy, Mindy, Tim, and Lyla are at the rodeo. Mindy and Tyra notice one of the cowboys is attractive and he is noticing Tyra too.
  • Afterwards, Tyra and the cowboy (Cash) are talking at the bar. It seems like he knows Mindy. Cash asks if Landry is her boyfriend and she says no, so they start dancing. Tyra instantly falls for him.
  • Tami confronts Buddy for doing a preliminary survey about the new video board prior to the vote on it this week. Tami calls him out for trying to bully the board and learns that Buddy played golf with someone on the board this past weekend.
  • Landry gets his wisdom teeth pulled and is out of it for sure. He calls Tyra and confesses his love to her.
  • Matt’s mom shows up after practice, much to the surprise of Matt. She gives him a ride home and then explains she is in town for a bit and wants to help out, so Matt says she can help with a doctor’s appointment for her grandma.
  • Cash and Tyra hang out at a party. It sounds like he and Billy knew each other in high school.
  • Tyra sees Cash take a pill from his pocket and he explains it’s to help with a shoulder he messed up a while back. He asks her to go somewhere and Tyra checks his phone and sees a ton of missed texts from Landry. Tyra starts to say she should go take care of Landry and he kisses her, so she changes her mind and goes with Kash.
  • Tami and Katie McCoy are now power-walking buddies. Katie is trying to help Tami with his scoreboard battle.
  • At school Landry asks Tyra what happened and she lies about where she was.
  • Matt’s grandma is thrown off by Shelby taking her to the appointment instead of Matt. Shelby doesn’t blink though and says it will be okay.
  • Tami tells Eric about her dilemma but Eric isn’t in the mood to listen. He pulls over to a bar and says he needs a scotch-flavored drink.
  • At the bar, he tells Tami how JD is a better QB but he knows what he has in Matt, Matt does everything right and he can’t bench him his senior year. Tami encourages his heart and caring so much about the decision.
  • Tami goes to a diner to “accidentally” run into a board member. She tries to explain her points of view and he brushes her off and tells her not to get angry. It sounds like the decision has already been made.
  • We learn that Matt hasn’t seen his mom since he was a kid, which hints that she walked out on him. Julie joins Matt and Landry. Landry sees Tyra and Cash walking outside and beings to realize that Lyra lied to him. Landry is hurt and confronts her about it. They get into a fight, Landry says there are mixed signals and Tyra says she is choosing Cash and that is that.
  • Shelby shows up to Matt’s house with groceries. His grandma immediately goes to her room. Shelby introduces herself to Julie. Matt tells her his mom can’t come in and pretends like everything is okay and that he needed her in the past but he figured everything out now and doesn’t need her now and asks her to go.
  • Tami tells Eric she thinks she lost already and Eric tries to encourage her.
  • Matt apologizes to his grandma. His grandma is actually the voice of reason, saying that it wasn’t easy for Shelby with his dad being difficult and she couldn’t helped Shelby out a bit.
  • Matt and his mom meet at a diner to talk. Matt says he knows his dad is a jerk. Shelby says she was a kid when she got pregnant and will never forgive herself for leaving Matt and doesn’t expect him to either. She said when she realized the situation Matt was in, being alone to take care of things, she decided to help. She isn’t looking for forgiveness but wants to lend a hand.
  • Tami is all smiles and puts on a happy face announcing the new jumbotron. She thanks Buddy for gathering the funds and decides to announce that he will be hosting the silent auction to raise money for the school in other areas of need.

Coach Taylor’s speeches.

Football observations.

  • Coach Taylor and Smash continue to work out together. We learn they changed the workout date and that an assistant set up the tryout, and Smash questions whether or not the head coach knows about it.
  • At the coach’s meeting, Coach Taylor says since they have a bye week, they are going to start installing the spread offense in an attempt to throw off their next opponent (McNulty), who has a strong defense. He says they will not repeat last week’s loss, although he refuses to say if he is going with McCoy at QB.
  • Smash and Saracen look up Coach Taylor’s connection and find out he’s the director of ticket sales, so Smash is a bit dejected.
  • At practice, they over the spread. Both QBs look good, but JD is clearly better. They go throw for throw, but JD throws a better deep ball.
  • Coach Taylor stops by Wade and JD’s workout. He starts quizzing him on the playbook and JD doesn’t flinch. Coach Taylor wants to find a flaw or reason not to start him, but doesn’t seem able to.
  • Coach Taylor and Smash drive to TAMU and both are anxious. Coach Taylor tries to go over things but Smash is getting annoyed. He asks about Mitch Stallman and Coach Taylor lies or remains vague about things.
  • At TAMU, Smash has been waiting for an hour on the sideline. Mitch comes over and says they have to reschedule. Smash looks like he’s going to cry and Coach Taylor decides to take matters into his own hands.
  • He leads Smash out onto the field in the middle of practice to get the attention of the head coach. He gives a passionate speech about how great Smash is and how he shouldn’t pass him up and he won’t be disappointed. It convinces the coach.
  • Then Coach Taylor talks to Smash and tells him about a time when Smash took over a game and that’s when he knew could go all the way and he told him this is Smash’s time. Smash plays without fear and has a great showing on the field. The TAMU coach can’t tell which knee Smash hurt, and Coach Taylor points out that’s a good thing. He says he will call Smash once they thought it over.
  • Back at Dillon, the coaching staff call Matt and JD into the office. Coach Taylor tells them that Matt will start but JD will play. They will rotate by series. Matt will run the offense out of the I-formation and JD will lead the offense when they go to the spread. He tells them to keep it a secret. JD looks eager and Matt looks pissed.
  • Smash gets a call at home. He teases his mom before telling her that he got in and will be on the TAMU team. They are all ecstatic. Smash goes to Coach Taylor’s house to share the good news and thank him for everything and how he couldn’t do any of it without him. Coach Taylor says he wants tickets on the 50 yard line.
  • Landry, Riggins, and Saracen are going to drive him to TAMU that night so he can be at practice in the morning. But they stop to run a few plays on the field once last time together. For a moment, everything is as it should be.

Unanswered questions.

  • It’s not totally uncommon for a coach to pull a scholarship due to injury. But it’s odd that no other school offered Smash just because of an injury. Unless it was too late in the process?
  • Why is it such a big deal that a 15-year-old freshman QB isn’t starting on the varsity? There’s nothing wrong with playing JV and getting experience before becoming a multi-year starter.
  • Everyone makes a huge deal about Dillon never beating Arnett Mead, even when Jason Street was the QB. They lost on a questionable call at the goal line after Saracen has the game of his life and everyone acts like he was terrible and calls for a QB change. It’s not fair at all to Matt, who was in no way responsible for the loss.

Plot holes.

Quote of the episode.

“Right now, right here, God has placed you to do what you do best. Go all the way.” - Coach Taylor

Clear eyes. Full heart. Can’t Lose. official counter: 20

Texas Forever official counter: 7

Riggins quitting the team official counter: 3

Coach Taylor calling Landry ‘Lance’ official counter: 7

Jason’s job aspirations: quad-rugby player, football coach, car salesman,