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November 1, 2014

Friday Night Lights: Let's Get It On

by Brett Love, posted Nov 3rd 2007 7:00AM
Lance and Eric - Friday Night Lights
(S05E05) "Lance!"

Week five of season two brings us another packed episode. Eric is getting settled back into his role as the Panther's coach, and being with his family. Big changes are in the air for Landry on, and off, the football field. A more assertive Matt is coming to some realizations about Julie. And we find out the result of the great Mexican shark blood surgery road trip. It's a lot to get to.

It was a big week for Eric as he found the road back to Dillon a little bumpier than he had probably envisioned. He and Tami are having some trouble getting back into the swing of things after the birth of the baby. And her bit about the six week stories was quite funny. While he's dealing with that, he's also got football problems aplenty. As he put it, his quarterback and running back are fighting on the field, and he doesn't even know where his fullback is. It all made for some terrific Coach Taylor stuff. That meant a little more football content than the average episode, but I thought it worked well here. Changing the players positions at practice, the airing of the grievances with Smash and Saracen, and especially the big half time speech, were all perfect Coach Taylor scenes.

Speaking of the dinner, I wasn't surprised to hear Eric's return referred to as controversial on the radio, because sports fans can hold grudges like there is no tomorrow. What did come as quite a shock was the way that Saracen called him out at dinner. Saying that Eric used the team as a stepping stone to get to TMU, and then when that didn't work out he came back thinking everyone would be happy to have him was pretty harsh, even if it did contain its fair share of truth. But adding the "...kind of like your daughter did with that Polish/Swedish kid, or whatever..." really drove the point home.

It's a new more assertive Saracen. Something we saw again as he finally came to a decision about Julie. She does seem to have snapped out of her funk after the flame out with the swede, but it looks like she'll be dealing with the fallout from it for some time. I like the new Saracen that is willing to go at it with Smash. It's been a long time coming for him, and I'm curious to see what comes of it. Although, I am undecided how I feel about the idea that this means all systems are a go for a new relationship with the live-in caregiver.

Meanwhile, south of the border, I thought that story was somewhat hit and miss. As crazy as the surgery idea was, with the shark blood and the questionable medical ethics, ultimately I like that Street pursued it. It opened an avenue for him to come to grips with his situation, something that he's never fully done. And I liked Riggins' end of the story too. As flawed as he is, at his core he's a loyal friend, and the way that he wants to protect Street shows some growth for him as well. However, that does kind of feel like a road we have been down before, so whether or not it sticks remains to be seen. The questions I have all center on the fact that we have three high school kids that have picked up and headed to Mexico in the middle of the week, during school, and the only reaction we see to that back home is, "Hmmmm, where did we put that fullback?"

Ma and Pa Street might be the most overlooked and underused characters ever. If you think about how much background we have had on Saracen's grandmother, Smash's mother, Lyla's parents, Riggins' brother, and Tyra's mother, it just seems odd. Even having only been introduced a few episodes ago, we've learned more about Landry's father than we ever did about Street's. And he is the character that most needed the attention of his parents when he was injured in that first episode. But the hospital stay instead focused on Lyla, and then the rehab focused on Herc, and the court case focused on Eric. It just strikes me as odd that in comparison to the other parents and guardians, they've really been relegated to minor roles. It stands out all the more here as you would think they would have something to say about all of this. That being said, it was a good wrap up to that story, and I look forward to all of them returning to Dillon.

Our pal Landry was pulling double duty this week as he had both the football story, and the murder investigation to deal with. On the field, I liked how things played out for him. Having his big plays be a tackle that forces a fumble and a missed reception was a good way to go, because it's not a huge stretch to see that happening. It also worked well as another up on what looks to be a very crazy roller coaster ride that his life is about to take. Because, it would seem that the idea that the murder investigation was going to be closed was wishful thinking on my part. It's moving right along, and Tyra's ties to the victim told Landry's father all he needed to know.

There was a lot of talk when the revelation of the murder first hit that it would all be worth it because of what was to develop between Landry and Tyra as a result. I'll agree that their scenes together have been very good. But what they should have told us was to stay tuned for Landry's father, because I am really enjoying Glenn Morshower. His little interrogation of Landry and the meeting with Tyra were both very well done. The line about how Landry has 'never' lied to him before, but he's lying to him now was very powerful.

That line also led to what was a pretty tough scene between Tyra and Landry. I was leaving open the possibility that she might tell him what had happened with his father, but fully expecting it to play out much like it did, though not as harshly from Tyra's end. Her insult about looking in the mirror was very cruel, but calculated to achieve the desired effect. I'm certain that there is much more to come between these two, but you have to feel for Landry watching that. And now that his father is hip to what is going on, it offers up a lot of possibilities for how it all winds up. Will his attitude about Tyra change once he gets the full story? Would he participate in a cover up to protect his son?

So, there we have it. Things are moving along quite nicely now. I liked that we got a measure of happiness this week in the form of the team winning, Street coming to grips to with his situation, and the Taylors getting their green light. There have been a lot of heavy stories dropped on Dillon so far this season, and this balanced it out nicely.

What was your favorite angle in this episode?
Eric & Tami getting things back on track96 (21.8%)
Panther football55 (12.5%)
The three amigos in Mexico47 (10.7%)
The new and improved Saracen162 (36.7%)
Tyra, Landry, and his protective father81 (18.4%)

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nick

can anyone tell me the name of the song when Lyla arrives in Mexico and she's in the cab?

Vande

November 09 2007 at 12:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
laura

amy3717: The last song was by Blue Merle, though I'm not sure what the name of it is.

November 05 2007 at 2:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jessie Scott

The song is "To Build a Home" by The Cinematic Orchestra.

November 05 2007 at 12:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
JLM

Brett, I think that the plot development of the Jason/Lyla/Tim triangle trumps Jason's parents at this point in the story arc. At some point the parents may be used again - since Jason does not want to live in the real world (e.g. making the team in China, the shark stem cells). Lyla and Tim may just give up helping their friend.

Amy3717 - not sure about the song title, but it sounded like the singer was Chris Martin.

November 04 2007 at 10:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
amy3717

Im curious what the last song was...at the very end of the episode

November 04 2007 at 9:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jorge Balls

Does anyone know what that great song was in the episode? In the scene where Jason Street jumps overboard on the booze cruise?

November 04 2007 at 12:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
hubris

The situation with Lyla, 6 and Riggins is pretty much summed up when Lyla said she needed to go pray. She loves both of them for different reasons. And they know she loves both of them. That situation isn't going to go anywhere anytime soon.

Yes, Aaron is kicking ass on this show (I call him Aaron cause that's the role I know him best from). I knew as soon as he went to see Tyra that he wasn't fooled for a second by their half-assed attempt to get away with justifiable homicide.

Also....SPOILER...

In the preview for next week, it's Landry and his father torching the station wagon, so it looks like his dad is definitely going to be part of the cover up.

November 03 2007 at 7:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Heather

I adore Glenn Morshower.

He was fantastic as Aaron Pierce on 24 & I was so very happy to see him play Landry's father. He's an excellent addition to FNL.

November 03 2007 at 12:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gary Mannigel

I would love to make a comment, but unfortunately Friday Night Lights is aired on "Friday evenings" and when you are a true high school football enthusiast, you are at a high school football game. Nice programming !!!

November 03 2007 at 11:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Patti B

I was really hoping you'd comment on the scene at the Mexican bar where Lyla first kissed Jason...then Tim and they both seemed okay with that. Who IS Lyla? Was she just drunk? What about her new devotion to God? or is she a nasty little vixen stringing along her boys?
This was one of the best episodes of the season, in all of television. I still think about this show long after it's over and usually watch it again the next day.

November 03 2007 at 9:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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