Friday Night Lights
Eyes Wide Open

Episode Report Card
Drunken Bee: B+ | 10 USERS: A+
Still Too Busy Crying, Sorry
Panther radio (perhaps a bit overused here? Can't anyone listen to lite FM at least?). Coach Taylor pulls up (after nearly driving past) in front of Matt Saracen's house. Matt peers out the window of the tiny, tiny little living room with the linoleum floor and bad upholstery. He starts freaking out, telling his grandmother -- over the blare of the television -- that she needs to go in her room for a bit. Grandma either doesn't hear him or ignores him. A knock at the door, and she asks who it is. Matt's quickly putting his shoes on, and I honestly can not get over how perfectly art-directed this house is -- ugly fluorescent light, cheap front door, haphazard furniture. When Coach Taylor identifies himself from the outside, Grandma -- her hair a mess -- looks determined and excited and confused. She shuffles in to the kitchen, mumbling, "Coach Taylor's here?!" In the kitchen she grabs a plate, and the plate is the Pfaltzgraff's Village pattern, which is just so common and American. This house paints a world, a community, a history, an emotional reality with a few delicate brushstrokes -- the linoleum floor, the velour robe, the Pfaltzgraff crockery.

Matt opens the front door just a crack and tries to get Coach to just let him come outside. Taylor tells him he'd like to come inside. Matt glances back toward his grandmother in the dim and dingy kitchen, taking the plastic cover off a store-bought cake, her hair perfectly unwashed and mussed in the back where it meets the chair she sits in for hours a day. As Coach Taylor walks in, the camera looks around the shabby room, lingering on a photo of a soldier in fatigues in the desert, holding up a sign that says, "Go Panthers Go!" The camera keeps ranging around the tiny space as if from Coach Taylor's perspective -- a small bedroom right off the main room, sketch books full of pencil drawings, an emotional profile portrait of a man right next to a sillily-sketched monster with the caption "Go Panthers!" Matt is absolutely uneasy, as he stands in front of Coach Taylor in his grease-stained work shirt. Grandma comes shuffling in, insisting that the Coach sit down and enjoy some cake. Coach Taylor is so incredibly charismatic and gracious in this scene -- he obviously understands Matt's unease, but he takes the time to look his grandmother in the eyes and tell her that she should be proud of Matt before smoothly suggesting that he and Matt go talk over Friday's game for an hour or so. Grandma breaks into a wide smile, but insists to Coach that he come back. Grandma tells Coach Taylor that when he comes back she'll get him some milk or hot chocolate or anything he could want, and then lowers her voice to Matt as he leaves: "Now you listen to him. You listen to him. Move your feet." She has equal parts joy and desperation in her face as Matt leaves, then once they're gone, sits down in her rocking chair and chuckles to herself, "Coach Taylor!"

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Friday Night Lights




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