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Friday Night Lights – May The Best Man Win
Smash refuses to give up on his college football plans, a visit from Tami’s ex irks a jealous Coach Taylor, Street receives life-changing news, and Riggins continues to pursue Lyla despite her new relationship.

Friday afternoon I made an impassioned plea for you all to watch Friday Night Lights. Now I’m embarrassed. Considering that it’s entirely possible this may have been the final ep of the show, it was pretty disappointing. Here’s the rundown:

Smash, still reeling from the news that TMU has revoked his scholarship, starts contacting the schools he turned down. No one bites, especially the University of Alabama, who “doesn’t play second fiddle” to anyone. Notice the increased use of “Brian” instead of “Smash,” which is a nice little touch. Running out of options, Smash meets with the director of an arena football league, who tells him that he could be making big bucks. Finally, Eric takes Smash to meet Coach Deeks at Whitmore. Deeks says six years ago he told Eric that Smash was the “whole package,” and that the Whitmore team is like a family. Touched, Smash realizes Whitmore is the place for him.

Now, most of us probably saw something like this coming back when Whitmore first offered Smash a scholarship … but NBC managed to ruin the surprise for those who didn’t by running a commercial with a little poll asking which option Smash would choose (A. Alabama, B. Arena League, C. Whitmore) … before Whitmore was even mentioned in the ep. Nice going.

In other big news, Street and his terrible hair are working at the dealership when Erin (the waitress from a few eps ago) pops up and announces she’s pregnant. Much like the Landry/killing storyline, this is overall pretty lame and yet has some great moments. Street is shocked by all of this, as his doctors had told him it could never happen. When Street shares the news, Herc’s response is to call the girl a bitch. I love Herc. Herc is also the voice of reason, suggesting that if it's not supposed to be possible then perhaps the child is not his. For whatever reason -- probably hope -- Street accepts Erin's claim that she has not been with anyone else and views the pregnancy as a miracle. He tries to convince Erin that they should have the child, which she is totally not down with, but since nobody on TV ever has an abortion I think we can all see where this is going. Street meets with Eric for guidance, explaining that this could be his only shot at having a child. It does have interesting implications – we feel for Street, but at the same time it is not fair of him to put this kind of pressure on a 19-year-old girl be barely knows. He goes to talk to Erin again, and begins to wear her down.

I think the best moment to come out of this storyline was Street telling Erin quite loudly, in the middle of her place of work, “I didn’t know I had the duct function to get sperm into the semen.” It doesn’t translate too well on paper, but it was priceless.

Riggins continues his pursuit of Lyla by regularly going to church and getting a job at the radio station hosting his own sports call-in show. Considering the size of Dillon and the reputation Riggins has, I find it hard to believe the station would give him his own show, but I guess it makes sense that the station would want to use his fame to bring more kids into the fold. Again, we got a couple of nice moments out of this, particularly the revelation that most of the calls were girls asking him out, and the girl who calls in to say that “his long hair reminds her of Jesus.” Nice. Also, Riggins defends Smash on-air, saying that he would have done a lot worse.

Thankfully Lyla remains unresponsive to Riggins’ wooing, though Chris tells him to back off anyway. Chris takes Lyla to meet his family, where we had a weird extended montage of the family eating dinner and laughing uproariously to the strains of some song I can’t remember. After dinner, Chris and Lyla get hot & heavy but he doesn’t want to have sex. Even though it’s dumb, I get why Lyla would feel rejected. BUT, her running straight to Riggins was pretty awful. It implied (to me at least) that Lyla doesn’t even really like Chris. In the end, Riggins tells Lyla that he will do “whatever it takes” to win her, and it is clear that he is wearing down her resolve. Grrrr.

I believe this ep had the briefest Saracen scene we've seen yet, in which he and Landry talk about Tyra and Matt basically calls her a whore. Fantastic.

Finally, in perhaps the stupidest story of the night, Tami’s ex-high-school-sweetheart Mo McArnold comes into town and Eric is jealous. I love me some Peter Berg, and he was great in this role, but this is the Taylor family’s finale story?!? The trio goes to dinner, where Mo and Eric drink an entire bottle of Jack Daniels and get into a fistfight. The end.

Overall, this was not a great ep, and it certainly wasn’t worthy of a season finale. If, as it appears, it was actually the series finale, then I am sorely disappointed. What do you guys think?


Allie said...

I know I'm not supposed to read these but this does sound dissapointing.

Sol said...

i'm not ready to let tim riggins go..

boots said...

I agree, and fortunately we won't have to! Hooray for more Tim Riggins!