Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Friday Night Lights-season 2

The obligatory Riggs pic.
So my completion of the second season of Friday Night Lights mere days after I posted about season 1 is not as pathetic and alarming as it might seem--the season was cut short by the 2008 writer's strike (remember that?), running only 15 episodes. So all told, about a 6 on the pathetic and alarming scale. Spoilers follow!

This slate of episodes was a slight letdown from my rapturous raves about the first season. Remember when I said the show never veered into melodrama? A wise FNL fan warned me that wouldn't always be the case, and boy was she right. I knew we were in for trouble when Landry and Tyra dumped the body of her attempted rapist from last season in a river. Why would you do that, Landry? It was clearly self-defense, and you're the smart one! That drama, which didn't get resolved until the ninth episode, lasted precisely eight and a half episodes too long. I could have done without the multi-episode arc where Riggins and Jason Street go to Mexico for experimental spinal surgery. And Julie Taylor is starting to get on my nerves a bit. She makes bad decisions and then whines about them incessantly. She's sort of like the Dawn of FNL. I rolled my eyes when the d-bag rival coach revealed "My wife has only three months to live." Of course she does. Moving right along. Also, what happened to Smash's bi-polar girlfriend? Jason's tattooed hottie, whom I actually quite liked?

However, the good news is the writers have clearly accepted that this is the Tim Riggins show. Though his mini-break living with the meth dealer was a bit ridiculous, I love the way his character gets shafted time and again (his brother gets with the single mom he fell for last season; Lyla leads him on while dating a member of the Fellowship of the Sun; Coach Taylor falsely accuses him of taking advantage of Julie), but he remains as funny and loyal and stubbornly messed-up as ever. His "apology" to the team for missing a week of practice is classic. I was also pleasantly surprised that the addition of a new baby to the Taylor clan, usually the death knell of a series, was handled in a complicated and honest way.

Despite the slight drop-off from the first season, the show is still awesome and I'm looking forward to season 3 to see how the show will handle Smash's graduation and freshman season at an HBCU, whether Matty calls off his (well-deserved, but still) pity party, and whether Street is going to become a father. In the depths of my pop culture memory, I have some recollection of an abortion controversy attached to this show. Not sure if this is where it comes up.

Clear eyes, full hearts, on to season 3!

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