Friday Night Lights

Episode Report Card
Drunken Bee: C- | 1 USERS: A+
Jumping The Gun
Football game. Touchdown after touchdown -- what Slammin' Sammy Mead calls "an old-fashioned shoot-out" -- with the two teams taking turns scoring. In general it's a high energy game -- the fans are loving it, and the coaches are coaching it up. Late in the fourth, the Panthers need a first down. The ball is snapped, Matt gets sacked. Panthers call a time-out, and Coach paces the sidelines, running his hands through his capable hair, seemingly not realizing that his hair will see him through this crisis, just like it has so many times before. Cut back and forth between the two sidelines; Coach can't decide what play to run; Dickie guesses it'll be a play action (which Coach always calls, in case you haven't noticed). Mac thinks Matt should "hit the safeties," but Coach wonders whether Dickie will be wanting them to "go to the seam." Coach huddles his boys up and calls a play. Cut between the two huddles, as Dickie correctly calls each move Coach is telling his boys to make. The boys head back out onto the field.

The ball is snapped, Matt fake-hands the ball off the Smash; he feels major pressure from the Lion defense, but gets the ball in the air just in the nick of time to Riggins, who catches it and takes off down the field. Cut between the two coaches on the sidelines, Eric urging Tim along, Dickie screaming at the top of his lungs at his boys to tackle Riggins, lots of running, lots of screaming, Riggins is going all the way...until Dickie fully launches off the sidelines as Tim runs by and tackles the shit out of the kid. Eric is like, "Whoa, whoa, whoa!" and the crowd goes silent while Dickie flips out, screaming at his kids that "that's how you take somebody down! You stick 'em!" Never has a tiny man been so frightening. The refs call coach interference, and call the game. Eric gazes across the field at the insane little man.

After the game, Eric storms into Dickie's office and demands that Dickie apologize to the school and to the players. Dickie is totally resigned, telling Eric that he's "got it." But Eric won't let up until Dickie bursts out, "You don't know what I'm going through!" Oh, Lord, here we go. Eric keeps at Dickie until he cries out, "My wife has three months to live!" And then -- AND THEN -- a little more quietly: "I don't have a game plan for this." Wow. What is this, a Prudential Life Insurance commercial? We Are Marshall? I half expect a dapper financial planner to pop up and intone, "Merrill Lynch. For those times when you don't have a game plan." Or, if anyone actually cared about making me happy, a quick cut over to Matthew McConaughey lifting weights on the beach in front of his Airstream, bro-ing out, "Man, I just try not to have a game plan, you know?" This show has so rarely gone the way of cheesy sports metaphors, it is truly shocking when it does. Dickie apologizes and asks Coach to tell Riggins he's a fine player. Eric just stares at him, speechless, then simply says, "I'm very sorry," and then leaves.

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Friday Night Lights




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