Kate (mskatej) wrote,

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Friday Night Lights, 1.12: What to do while you're waiting

I want to talk a little bit about how this show looks. There’s nothing outstandingly pretty about the town where it's set, in that there are far more "beautiful" locations in the world, but the way FNL is filmed… it makes it look like Dillon is the most exquisite place you’ll ever see. Every shot is rich with colour and beauty and soul, and whoever is responsible for the cinematography; they’re not only a gifted artist, they love this place, and they love these actors, and they care about this show. One of the reasons so many people, including myself, have fallen so hard for Friday Night Lights is because it’s actually quite rare to experience something that’s so full of passion. Every aspect of the show vibrates with emotion and artistic expression. The writers, the directors, the actors… this show means as much to them as it does to its fans. This is not just a job for the people involved, it’s special.

Street’s family serves Coach.

I really love this storyline, for a number of reasons. It’s a comment on the American legal system and how it’s often abused: people suing over imagined injustices so they can make money. In a lot of television, the plaintiff is not sympathetic, because their motives don’t go beyond trite reasons like revenge or obvious reasons like making a slow but hefty buck. It's the latter in the Streets’ case. Only… they NEED that money. And they should GET that money. Their reasons for suing are tragically understandable, their motives are believable, and that’s so damn rare in drama.

At the start, we see Jason’s anger about what his parents have done. But it's significant that he's not angry because he has any personal moral problems with their decision, he's angry because he’s a very smart young man who knows it will cripple him further in terms of day to day living in a town that deifies its football team. He does understand why it’s a necessary evil though, so he supports his parents, and he knows he can still hold his head up high without feeling ashamed. It's so wonderfully obvious why Lyla loves this boy so much.

Similarly, Coach is sympathetic. He doesn’t deserve to be sued, and he’s not responsible for what happened to Jason (if he is it’s in an abstract way), but because of the kind of person he is he doesn’t even try to argue with Jason’s father (that was an incredibly powerful scene I thought) and he doesn’t hesitate to take Jason’s hand when it's offered to him at the end.

This is complex, intelligent storytelling (as ever). No bad guys, no good guys, just a situation that forces the audience to see both sides, to feel for both sides, and to think about what's happening and what it means for all our characters.

Matt and Julie are such a lovely, sexy couple. God he’s adorable. So easily pleased and easily upset. He’s an optimistic person who takes pleasure in the good things that happen to him while they’re happening. He lives in the moment, feeling everything, thoughtful and vulnerable and tough; he wears his heart on his sleeve and he carries the world on his shoulders. Matt has this quiet intelligence about him, which is at such odds with the way he talks: that hilarious monotone drawl... ♥ and it makes him endlessly surprising to watch.

Favourite line:

“Would now be a bad time to tell you that I told Smash that we’d double date with him and Waverly and we’d pretend that we do that a lot and we talk about all sorts of neat stuff besides football?”

NEAT STUFF. *dies*

The Waverlash!!!!! I can’t believe this show just GAVE us a ship shortening. THEY WANT PEOPLE TO WRITE FANFIC. If anyone writes this paring they better damn well label it "The Waverlash", or I'll comment with a complaint.

Smash is suddenly in need of his new friend, Matt, to lie for him and to hang out with him. Then Matty gives him girl advice! THE TABLES HAVE TURNED. And sooooo seamlessly. I thought Smash’s speech to W at the end was vaguely ridiculous, but then I’m never impressed with the argument, “I’m an asshole by nature so if you love me you’ll need to roll with that.” I think it was in character for Smash to be that much of a jerk, but I’m a little disappointed by W’s reaction to it. Personally I would have preferred her to go, “Fuck you The Smash. Either shut up about football and how big your dick is or fuck off.” But hey, she’s just a kid right?

Tyra and her mother were interesting: she’s such a tough young woman and I found her beatdown of skeezy mom’s boyfriend to be beyond awesome, and her ultimatum was so righteous and cool. I officially love the mother for making the right choice, and if that didn't make you weep a little bit you're made of stone.

I’m baffled by Tim’s role in this episode; his speech to Tyra served more as a parallel to her mother’s situation than anything we’ve seen developing between the two of them. It came out of nowhere really because there hasn’t been any indication that Tim feels that strongly about Tyra in previous episodes. Yes, they’ve hooked up a few times, but his apology was… don’t get me wrong, I liked it and it moved me, but I would have loved to have seen more build-up to it. Are there any deleted scenes that might help me understand where that came from? (I’ve only seen the DS’s from the last ep and none before because I suck.)

In conclusion, Coach’s hair FTW!

Tags: tv: friday night lights
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