Friday Night Lights

Episode Report Card
Drunken Bee: A- | Grade It Now!
Alone Together

Pep rally in the cafeteria over at East Dillon. The band is there, and the cheerleaders, all revving everybody up. Out in the hallway, Ornette shoots the shit with Billy and Traub, the two doofus-y coaches. They're all smiling and reminiscing about last week's game when Vince refused to take a knee and instead decided to "air it out." The decision that made Coach Taylor and Crowley cry because of its tackiness. Coach asks Ornette if he can speak to him a minute. Coach is misleadingly pleasant when he asks Ornette how Oklahoma Tech was. The pleasantry quickly devolves as Coach tells Ornette that he will not have any one player bigger than the team and that if Vince misses another practice, he'll bench him. But Ornette came up on the streets and knows how to scrap, so without missing a beat, he wonders if that's the same thing Coach told his boy at Shane State--the university trying to recruit Eric as Head Coach. Ornette laughs, thinking he's got the upper hand with this knowledge that Coach didn't know he had. He tells Coach to quit with this bullshit about how he's all about the team. Coach, face tight, just looks at him hard and says "Mr. Howard. I don't have any more to say" and walks away.

In the school parking lot, Becky writes a note-- "Luke-- I want to start over-- xo Becky"-- and puts it on his windshield.

Back in the hallway, muted behind instrumental music, Crowley and Billy are getting into it, presumably over Billy's flashier approach to coaching. They have to be separated. Luke and Vince are getting into it, Luke telling Vince he's not acting like a part of the team. Everyone bickering, fighting, coming apart. Coach, his back turned to them, squeezes his eyes closed listening to all this nonsense until he swings around and screams, "SHUT UP" at the kids. The doors to the cafeteria open and the kids head in, scuffling and fighting, and then finally putting on the appearance of being a team to absorb the adoration being directed at them. Principal Levi takes the microphone to honor "our own Coach Taylor" the man who has taught them all, and Coach reluctantly comes forward, obviously uneasy with playing this role. Ornette stares at him from the audience, Eric is no leader of him. Coach takes a breath and then leans in to the microphone, "Can you say victory?" and everyone goes wild and a little bit of your heart dies when you watch this man of integrity play it so fake.

But the heart is a wonderful thing, because as much as it dies, it also regenerates and so we cut over to Julie knocking on a door and we all hold our breath because we really don't want her going back to that clammy weasel of a man, Derek. And the door opens, but we only see the male form from behind for a while, watching Julie take him in, relief and love and comfort washing over her. Then the camera swings around and we see....Matt Saracen. And if you did not shriek at this, please excuse yourself from the living and loving hordes of humanity, because not only do we get Matt Saracen, but we also get that little Matt Saracen crooked smile. And then we cut to black.

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Friday Night Lights




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