A lot of the things going on in Friday Night Lights this season don’t really deal with the main characters’ choices and the consequences of said choices. Instead, there’s a focus on outside forces and how the characters react to these changing circumstances. Maybe that’s more realistic than other stories. We would all like to believe that we are masters of the surrounding domain, that we must manifest destiny, that our plans, exact and meticulous, will carry us to a future we believe in, a future we deserve. However, our choices are often dictated by things out of our control that, for a time, seemingly rip any semblance of choice from life. The most challenging and strengthening situations come after these moments where we must pull ourselves out of the ditches that both the world around us and ourselves have dug. This week’s episode involves a bunch of moments before climbing out.
But yeah, things HAPPEN to characters and they just have to DEAL with it.
Coach Taylor, for example, has to deal with Luke and Vince. Man, those two sound like a revamp of the Dukes of Hazard or something! In reality (tv reality), Luke and Vince still have some tension because they both play the same position on the varsity squad which is a little unbelievable since there are only nineteen players on the team. Then, in a groundbreaking plot, Vince steals Luke’s wallet. He denies it the whole episode, even after Luke and his buddies (including resident Dillon Asshole, JD McCoy) jump Vince. Luke and Vince both get taken into the slammer, where Coach Taylor bails them out (there is nothing the man cannot do). Vince and Luke reconcile, and both lo and behold, Vince give Luke his wallet back. Just joshin’ between friends!
Principal Taylor has to deal with her school getting less money from the boosters because they invited some awful, reprehensible, totally non-American politician to speak at graduation, I mean she transferred Luke Cafferty. Also, the radio stations in Dillon hate her.
Coach Taylor also has to host a pep rally. This involves him reuniting Eats Dillon’s 1980’s state championship team, which is shocking because, hey Coach, I thought they didn’t have a football team (they get into this a little bit. As Dillon developed, West Dillon got all the fun stuff and East Dillon became the “bad” part of town. You know, the other side of the tracks). The team gets back together, thanks to a non-crazy talking Buddy Garrity and all is good with the East Dillon tradition OR IS IT?!
The proprietor of the restaurant at which the pep rally is head was the hero of the East Dillon team in the 1980’s but now he hates football! But his family loves football! But what is much more interesting is that his daughter Jess and Landry Clarke are all up ons each other!
That is not Jess. That is Devin. More on her later. That is Landry, though. Shredding, rocking, he wants to do some dancing too. So come on, come on, come on come on and dance with Landry.
So, Landry and Jess (<3<3<<<333) start off as most of Landry’s relationships start off; She asks him for a car ride. He agrees (hesitantly, because last time a girl asked him for a ride, he ended up killing a rapist, so baby steps). They go to a party! They dance! Vince (y’,know, wallet guy!) tries to get all up ons Jess, but she says “I have a boyfriend.” IS LANDRY THAT BOYFRIEND?! Apparently, no. Landry asks Jess about that claim and she is just not that into him. FAST FORWARD to the pep rally and they totes make out while cleaning up (eh, eh). Landry then says “We’re not dating, right?” and Jess says “Definitely not.” and then Landry leaves but the looks on their faces leave the whole thing ambiguous! Television, you vandal, you!
Speaking of vandals, let’s check in with Tim Riggins
Tim wants to go hunting but his brother has to do things with his wife (women be shopping). Instead, Tim goes hunting with former QB1 Matt Saracen and they talk about life and rules and stuff. At another point, Tim goes dress shopping with Becky because her mother has blown her off again (Tim can relate to that on multiple levels). They look for the perfect pageant dress (Riggins be shopping). Good week Tim Riggins!
However, Former QB1 Matt Saracen and his love, Julie Taylor, have a tougher week. They are always fighting because Julie is going to college and the schools to which she applies are all over the country. There is tension. If tension was a thing, you would be able to cut it with some sort of cutting implement.
Julie and her friend Devin (from the photo above, remember?) go to Dillon’s gay bar “Steers” (Dillon has everything!) because it will be Devin’s first time going to a gay bar and she needs moral support. I feel like I’ve seen a show with this plot before. First, a well dressed boy locks some people in a hotel room, then lesbians, finally cage fighting. It’s a system. But yeah, Julie goes with Devin because where’s the freedom in the disco if you’re all alone?
The gay bar seems more like the gay chillax zone where people chill and relax. Julie does see one of her dad’s assistant coaches, which is uncomfortable. However, they come to an understanding at the pep rally. Don’t ask, don’t seem to have any recollection of seeing your boss’s daughter (Ashton Kutcher!) at the gay bar. Maybe he has a twin?
Matt Saracen has a very difficult week. He is questioning his place in Dillon, his life with Julie, if he should have gone to Chicago. However, at the end of the episode, this all turns mute as Matt finds out his soldier father was killed in Iraq.
NEXT WEEK: Matt deals with everything.