Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday Night Lights, "The Giving Tree": Lock up your coach's daughters

Spoilers for "Friday Night Lights" season three, episode 10 coming up just as soon as I make sure all my doors are locked...

NOTE: This and all subsequent "FNL" season three reviews were written after viewing the DirecTV cut, which can be several minutes longer than the NBC version. So both my review and the early comments may refer to scenes that were not shown on NBC.
"Your punishment is you're going to have to have a conversation with me about it." -Tami
"The Giving Tree" is one of the stronger episodes of season three, but it's also an odd one, in that most of the plots played out like "Friday Night Lights" Greatest Hits. Tami and Julie have another tearful heart-to-heart about sex, ala season one's brilliant "I Think We Should Have Sex." Landry realizes that Tyra takes him for granted, ala various parts of late season one and late season two, and Tyra starts to come around to the idea of Landry as her ultimate man, ala the end of season two. And Buddy again gets shut out of his family's life after a public humiliation, ala what happened after Tyra's mom ratted him out in season one.

Now, there were parts of the episode without real precedent (JD McCoy's minor rebellion against his dad, Eric getting tossed by the refs and leaving Wade to get all the credit for the victory). And conflicts within families or non-blood relationships aren't one and done, but ongoing. Just because Julie didn't sleep with Matt after she and Tami had their first talk didn't mean that it would never happen, or that she and Tami wouldn't have to discuss the deed.

But I think I would have liked only one familiar story at a time, preferably the Tami/Julie stuff, which contained the usual heart-tugging brilliance from Connie Britton and from Aimee Teegarden, as well as some wonderfully quiet work from Kyle Chandler and Zach Gilford. (The decision to have Coach stew silently made his anger feel a lot more powerful than if he'd been ranting and raving at Julie and Matt like they were the referees from the playoff game.) Leave the rest of the deja vu for another hour, okay? I know we only have three episodes left after this one -- probably ever (more on that in the bullet points) -- but much as I like both Tyra and Landry, I think I could have done without them having the same epiphanies for the 18th time, and in the same episode as the sex story.

Some other thoughts:

* Some people have asked what NBC's desperate move to put Jay Leno in primetime five nights a week means for marginal shows like "Friday Night Lights." Well, it sure doesn't improve the odds of a fourth season, unless DirecTV winds up ponying up so much of the production cost that NBC decides to air the episodes on Saturday nights or something, not worrying about the ratings so long as they get some DVD sales out of it. I'm not optimistic.

(NOTE: I'm not making too many changes to these posts from the DirecTV version, but at least one recent news report suggests I may have been too pessimistic on this front.)

* Julie needs to teach her dad about text-messaging, which would have spared him the "Can you hear me now?" ad at the bar and allowed him to send Wade the play he wanted. Things did work out in the end, but I suspect there's going to be a lot of pressure from the boosters to keep Wade in the job even after Mac finishes his recovery. And, depending on how the playoffs go, I could see a storyline (likely for the hypothetical and unlikely fourth season) where the boosters start pushing Wade to take over the team, in the same way that Eric got the main job when his own quarterback protege was coming into his prime.

* I'm starting to really like Katie McCoy, who clearly doesn't share her husband's insane fixation on turning their son into the new Robo-QB. Here's what I wonder, though: she tells Joe she's not comfortable with his football obsession, but why does she think they moved from the glamour Dallas to the middle-of-nowhere that is Dillon, if it wasn't to put their kid with the best offensive coach in the state? Did Joe tell her some lie, or has she just brushed it off until she saw how it was all starting to hurt JD?

* Putting the Buddy/Lyla story in this episode did create an opportunity for Julie and Lyla (two characters I don't remember having a conversation before) to bond a little, and for Julie to have someone to talk to about her great humiliation. And in this circumstance, Lyla was probably a better sounding board than Tyra, who probably would have told Julie to push back against her parents. And I like that, when Julie was actually with Tyra, it was an opportunity for her to point out how self-involved Tyra can get.

* Also, it seems appropriate that Tyra would take a shine to Landry again after watching him rock on stage. Girls still dig guys in bands, right?

* Really, the acting was strong all-around this week. Buddy and Tim's confrontation at the door to the Riggins house, with all that was left unsaid about what would happen if the old man tried to get by the young fullback, and about who was really the stable man in Lyla's life, was very well-played by Brad Leland and Taylor Kitsch.

Being briefer than I'd like because I'm running late and want to get the review up, so I'll ask, what did everybody else think?

37 comments:

Jon Weisman said...

I was wondering about the backstory (if any) to the refs' bias against Dillon and the chaotic behavior in the stands. Was this the same school/town that was the overly racist one from season one? Did they explain the backstory and I missed it?

Thyca said...

Anyone else think that Coach Taylor's remarkably uncharacteristic outburst was the direct result of him discovering Julie & Matt? Kyle Chandler was insanely great in the flipping out scene, but I think the only one there who really understood why he went off the rails was Tami.

I loved pretty much loved the entire episode, but Taylor Kitsch was outstanding, making me notice him in a way I hadn't before. Yes, the Tyra/Landry plot had a BTDT feeling to it, but I loved the new bassist calling Landry, basically, a ho. And it looks like Landry's acne is finally clearing up.

It seems that they are grooming for another season, where JD becomes a much more central character. I'm not sure I'd like the show so much without Matt Saracen, but I can't blame the writers for trying.

R.A. Porter said...

I thought Coach's "blow up" was a calculated ejection. Assuming the refs' problem was with him and not the team, getting himself tossed was the best possible move late in that game. It reduces the odds of the referees truly screwing them, it relieves some of the pressure on the team, and it reminds the players how far Coach will go for them so they can do the same for him.

Happens more in basketball than football, but Coach's calm walk to the bar told me he meant to get tossed.

The rest of the episode was really solid, although I thought Minka Kelly's limitations as an actress hurt some in the earlier scenes with Buddy.

More of my thoughts in my review here.

Chris Littmann said...

I thought this week's Buddy humiliation was different from the past, because in the past at least he had Lyla around (even after a minor car driven through the dealership incident).

Tyra/Landry, Part 2? Eh...I'm not sure.

As far as Season 4, I realize all logical signs point to this show not being back, but I've got to say, they're laying the foundation for some interesting stuff: Wade Aikman, the McCoy's. Plus we've been slowly, casually introduced to a few people I assume are underclassmen like Madison, JaMarcus (the lying fullback) and Charles (the fat -- and I'm assuming -- lineman who was driving the car and was also at the party.) Plus, I think Julie is still an underclassman, right?

Anyway, I thought it was very solid. Show felt tighter because they weren't trying to work on some sort of departing character arc.

Kristin said...

Okay, they made me cry--again. There is something about having a pre-teen daughter that makes me really react to the scenes with Julie and her parents. The conversation between Tami and Julie was just perfect. Horridly embarrassing, but necessary all the same.

I like how Riggins is becoming the more stable male in Lyla's life right now. Riggins is a good dude who's been kind of beaten down by his situation. Nice to see him still being is beer-guzzling self, but tamer and a tad more mature. I still don't like Lyla, but she was better for me this week. I'm guessing she's headed off to the same nothing college in TX as Riggins now that her college money is gone?

I really don't want Tyra to be rewarded at all for her behavior over the last couple of seasons. She doesn't deserve Landry. No matter what she does to make up to him, I hope he finds someone better. She is selfish.

I hope Landry bleeds her dry and leaves HER in the dust. That would be a nice change of pace. I'm glad he finally called her out on the carpet, but he better not give her the green light on their relationship for one lousy gig at a bar.

Bryan said...

Coaches blow-up was great but definitely not calculated. Too late in the game plus a little to cheesy for Coach I think (also if it was calculated I would think he'd a left Wade with a couple plays to call. This was frustration - pure and simple - at something he new he could not control. (I don't think that grill made it through the cleaning either)

belinda said...

AHAHAHAHA! Coach Taylor, in the grill scrubbing scene (where I though Saracen reacted most perfectly)was fantastic. I couldn't stop laughing! You could completely visualize him transferring all his anger to scrubbing the HELL out of that grill out, and that Matt totally knows it too. :D So it made a lot of sense for the Coach to erupt during the game instead, with all that pent-up anger from seeing her daughter in bed with Matt.

Also great: Julie's scream at her dad walking in. Heh. And Eric and Tami's non conversation in the bedroom that night, as well as Tami and Julie's actual conversation afterwards. It did feel a bit like deja vu, but given that it was dealt with nicely in this episode, I'm not complaining.

It's been brewing for a really long time, but is Riggens the man or what? He takes McCoy under his wing, and was able to be politely refuse Buddy bullying Lyla. Not to mention getting Street his job, remodeling a house, getting into college, being a pretty decent boyfriend, etc, etc. What has happnened to the 'most screwed up' kid in school? Given we only have 3 more episodes, I'm guessing Riggens' storyline is up, which is nice, because I think he's really grown into his own as an adult, but I am a little disappointed in how easy the transition was for him (seemingly so, with the last episode basically wrapping up college in a bow for him) and not see him struggle a bit with his destructive tendencies. (Not that we didn't see any of it, it's just that the progression wasn't really all too apparent.)

Oh, Tyra. Yes, girls still do dig guys in bands. But I feel so bad for Landry. Tyra's a bit too wishy washy with him, and while I'd be happy if they did end up together come the finale, it's a bit annoying for them to tie it all up in a nice big bow.

But, we do still have 3 more episodes, so what the hell do I know, other than to enjoy what might be the last few episodes of a series I really still love and one of the few that I actively look forward to watching every week. Argh. I can't believe it's almost the end.

mj said...

"Well, it sure doesn't improve the odds of a fourth season, unless DirecTV winds up ponying up so much of the production cost that NBC decides to air the episodes on Saturday nights or something, not worrying about the ratings so long as they get some DVD sales out of it"
On the other hand, I expected that the greater availability of NBC production funding (because high-production cost shows like My Own Worst Enemy, ER, and Lipstick Jungle are being replaced by low-production cost Jay Leno) would mean that Directv would NOT need to pony up any more money than they're already paying. In other words, I think Jay at 10 improves, rather than reduces, the chances that FNL gets renewed. Or are you assuming that hiring Jay Leno for the 10pm slot would be SO expensive that it would cost more than the combined production costs of the already cancelled shows, in which case more cancellations are necessary?

Eric said...

I like the idea of Coach T intentionally getting himself ejected from the game to give his team a chance to win it down the stretch--it fits quite nicely with the sacrificial "giving tree" theme of this episode. Of course, the team didn't even need Coach to call the last few plays, perhaps because he has already given them enough to stand soundly on their own legs, with or without his guidance--that's what I saw behind Eric's smile as he watched the Panthers win from inside the bar.

Anonymous said...

seems no one mentioned it yet: the shot of J.D. drinking milk at the party then cut to Buddy drinking booze at the strip bar.

is that what's in store for J.D. ?

great ep, and the grill-cleaning scene really killed it for me. poor matt.

Rick said...

@mj, NBC will definitely be saving money on the Leno deal ($13 million a week, according to some reports), but I wouldn't assume that they'll take the extra money and pump it into other shows. NBC is hurting in a bad way right now- they may need that money. FNL has already shown itself to not pull in viewers, even by NBC's standards. Unless this spring has a huge jump, I would not expect anything past the next three.

I think having lousy refs undercut the impact of Coach's outburst- how much stronger would it be to watch Eric blow up in a normally reffed game?

I loved the parallel stories of the "Daddy's Little Girl" relationships ending for both Julie/Eric and Lyla/Buddy.

How far has Buddy fallen? I hope some of the Auto Bailout benefits finds their way to Garrity Motors.

Is Madison JD's Rally Girl, or is she actually interested in him? Both the milk conversation and the doorway talk with his parents seemed too "results-oriented".

Is it worth pointing out that at the end of The Giving Tree, the boy sits on the stump?

What's with Riggins calling JD "McCoy", rather than "1-2"?

Mike Williams said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike W said...

Kristin said..."Okay, they made me cry--again. There is something about having a pre-teen daughter that makes me really react to the scenes with Julie and her parents."

Right with you Kristin...and yeah, I had a tear in my eye, too.

As a parent of an 8 and 2 year old girls, the scenes with the Taylors and Julie get to me the most.

I love watching how they handle things, the discussions they have with each other, and how real it feels.

That said, I'm not looking forward to those years a whole lot lol. I much prefer dealing with problems that are limited to 3rd grade math homework, deciding whether she's seen one too many Hannah Montana episodes for the day, or whether she should wear sweatpants in the cold on the way to her dance class.

One other thing that I got a chuckle out of, when Landry was helping Tyra at her house, Tyra's mom -- the still beautiful Dana Wheeler Nicholson -- walks in wearing just a towel.

Was that a subtle reference about her role in one of my favorite movies of all time, Fletch?

I was kind of waiting for Chevy Chase to knock on the door, with her answering, and Chase telling her his car just hit a water buffalo.

Kathie said...

Nobody portrays awkwardness as well as Matt Saracen........awesome scene with him and the coach!

greebs said...

One thing I loved - and it was small - was Coach Taylor in his car after finding Julie in bed with Matt. As he tried to put his seatbelt on, he yanked so hard it stuck, and then had to relax a bit to pull it all the way across himself. Just a small way this show is so great.

And when I watch episodes like this, I can't help but wonder how screwed up a system it is that shows like this are so endangered, and Howie Mandel is getting a new show on TV...

Jim D. said...

I agree that the Tami/Julie, Eric/Matt, and Riggins/Buddy scenes were wonderfully played. The thing that made the Riggins/Buddy in the doorway scene so layered, though, was the realization (by this viewer, and probably by Tim) that, whatever Buddy's failings, he still cared enough about his daughter to come and beg for her forgiveness. Not so with Riggins, Sr., or anyone else in Tim's life, except maybe Coach Taylor. So Tim's firm-but-gentle blocking of the doorway ("Please...") was just a perfect balance.

Mahatma Panda said...

The Landry/Tyra story is repetitive but I liked the "Dillon Debate Tema" shirt Landy was wearing (a nice contrast to the "Dillon Football" shirts we see all the time) and Tyra looked very fetching in the Crucifictorius shirt.

Speaking of which, isn't the girl in the band a freshman? Aren't Landry and his drummer under 21? Are there not laws in Texas about under 21s working/appearing in a bar/club?

mj said...

@Alan&Rick - Shall I start offering stock tips? My December prediction (see up-thread) of increased (rather than diminished) prospects of FNL renewal in light of the new Leno show was quite remarkable, don't you think? Truth be told I had no eff'n clue, just blind faith in the best show on network television... What was Buddy Garritty's motivation for giving Wade Aikman such an odd long look when they shook hands at the end of the game? Was it newly-discovered respect?

Bob Timmermann said...

I've seen a lot of high school football games in my life and quite a few bad refs, but I don't see how those guys could have kept their jobs.

Most states have officials from a different part of the state take care of playoff games from the two competing teams. And I've never seen a coach get thrown out. Football refs absorb a ton of abuse from coaches. And most of the time, they just stoically stand there.

By watching the game on TV and phoning the sidelines, Coach Taylor was, at any level, cheating.

Aside from that part, I thought the episode was very good and enjoyed seeing "Responsible Tim Riggins" for a change.

Omagus said...

Jim D: Tim's firm-but-gentle blocking of the doorway ("Please...") was just a perfect balance.

I think that this was also a nice way to show the positive effect that Lyla has had on Tim. There's no way a pre-Lyla Riggins is that patient or says, "Please." But Riggins truly does care for Lyla and actually wants the best for her. I know that Lyla isn't the most popular character among viewers (and the fight outside Chateau de Riggins pretty clearly showed Minka Kelly's acting limitations) but give credit where it is deserved.

I also liked the scene with Lyla and Julie. Yes, both of them are very easy on the eyes. But additionally, as Alan points out, I really don't think that the two of them have really ever spoken. Lyla really could provide a nice counterbalance to Tyra in the older sister/confidante-to-Julie role.

I agree that this is the best drama on network television so I don't want to see it go but I really wonder how it would look in a fourth season. Matt, Tim, Landry and Lyla would all almost certainly have to go. Tyra would most likely have to go. Yes, we could still keep the Taylors, and the McCoys could take more of a center stage but there would still have to be more and the show has not done a good enough job of developing new characters to replace the (presumably) departing ones that we have come to love. I'm very interested in seeing how it plays out.

R.A. Porter said...

Something we've all said about the development of characters this season is that they haven't done a good job of building up anyone for a potential fourth season and beyond other than the McCoy's. But what we've neglected - me definitely included - is how quickly ALL of these people we know and love were introduced to us in season one.

I've been thinking it over more and more, and even if everyone but the Taylors were gone and the show had to start from scratch, the creators would already be three characters ahead of where they started in episode 1.1. I have faith they could pull it off.

spiderpig said...

Except for the fact that Lyla's voice made me want to stab a fork in my ear, the scene with Lyla and Julie in the bathroom was perfect. Lyla is the ideal person to understand what Julie meant when she said she felt like she wasn't "daddy's girl" anymore. Lyla seemed so much older and more mature than Julie in that scene also.

Am I the only person who doesn't understand how Lyla should feel so justified and just plain entitled to the money Buddy lost? Is it wrong for a parent NOT to pay for their child's college tuition? My parents helped me through college, but I also got scholarships, loans and worked while I was in college to pay for it. I would never have yelled at my parents about how I was expecting some money no matter how good my grades were. I think Buddy was right on calling Lyla a spoiled brat. I thought Lyla was mad because Buddy was once again making very bad choices but the yelling scene outside the Riggins house made it seem like Lyla was yelling "Waaaaa you lost my money".

Alan, what you said about the scene Buddy and Tim's confrontation at the door to the Riggins house was spot on. I really loved the subtext of that scene. Riggina is so the man this season. Love him.

Anonymous said...

In regards to Lyla's reaction to Buddy losing her college money...

I find her reaction to be completely justified considering how badly he has let her down over the years. His infidelity was the catalyst for her family falling apart; and despite everything, she stuck with him. The realization that he so haphazardly threw away her future was the last straw. The person she should trust the most in the world is also the one who causes her the most pain.

Best moment of the episode is when Mrs. Coach told Matt to go talk to Coach in the backyard. Like the warden leading a prisoner to their execution... Just perfect.

Drew said...

I think the most important bit of dialogue in the Buddy/Lyla fight was Lyla saying that Buddy promised the money was hers if she had the grades. So she didn't sit idly by and wait to be pushed through college. She held up her end of the deal and Buddy, again, failed to. Leland is a fantastic actor, though, and I think Kelly showed that she can definitely step up her game when she has to and that she's grown over the years.

The most perfect scene was the scene where Coach walks into Matt's house. I love that we didn't see what happened. The camera stayed outside the house and waited. Awesome moment. Kyle Chandler is the best.

Stephanie said...

Some of this did feel familiar, but I loved it anyway. Eric's reactions to discovering Julie and Matt were perfect, from the seat belt tugging to the grill scraping. And the "talk" made me cry. It's a crime that Connie Britton has never been acknowledged for her awesome work.

I did think the referees were so bad as to be unbelievable. I don't know how any ref who ignores so many blatant fouls could still have a job.

I'm pretty tired of the whole Tyra/Landry story. I kinda wish they'd move past it and do something else with the characters. I was never invested in their relationship to begin with, and I feel like it's taking away from better stories.

@spiderpig: I don't know the specifics of your situation, but my situation was similar. I worked all through highschool to set aside money for college, and my parents helped me where they could. I never expected anything more.

But I think this situation is different. As Lyla mentioned, her parents had been putting aside this money for her since she was a baby, and Buddy told her they would pay for her college if she made the grades. It would be one thing if he was desperate and told her that he needed to use the money so they could get by, but that's not what happened here. He took it for some get rich quick scheme because he wanted things to be the way they were before. He couldn't just ride out the bad times until things got better, so he ended up squandering his daughter's future. I thought he was way off base calling her a spoiled brat over this. I'd have freaked out on him, too.

I'm excited by the prospect of a two season renewal, but I can't help but wonder who's going to be left on the show.

R.A. Porter said...

@Stephanie, Buddy took a bath selling his house after it had sat on the market, bleeding money for months. Times really are desperate for him. He's always been able to provide for his family (families, really, if you count the Panthers) and that's becoming harder for him.

A town like Dillon, so dependent on the oil wells for its prosperity, is going to be harder hit than most by a downturn in the economy. Two seasons ago, recall Tyra's tryst with the investment analyst. They didn't open those wells. With national unemployment creeping up, with banks collapsing, the people in a town like Dillon aren't going to be buying a lot of new cars in the near future.

Jennifer said...

By stealing "her" money, Buddy told Lyla by his actions, "Screw you, I'll do what I like and I don't love/respect you enough to live up to my promises." Kudos to Tim for stepping up for her. Even beyond the fact that Lyla will spend the rest of her life paying off college loans, that's incredibly insulting to hear from your parent that you stood by when he didn't deserve it.

I would have been happy at this point to have Landry tell Tyra to permanently piss off (I like them together, but this storyline is getting old), but I had to admire her actually taking his point AND stepping up to do something for him back. Though it would have come across better if she hadn't said "your STUPID band."

Every single one of these kids (maybe not Gracie yet, where is she anyway?) has been drinking in bars since day 1, episode 1. Nobody cards in Texas, apparently.

I also give kudos to JD for sneaking off with the girl anyway. And to his mom for being the (not listened to) voice of sanity in the McCoy household. Too bad she's not a better liar.

P.S. "You know what's good to do before a game? Getting laid. A lot." Thank you, Zen Master Riggins.

Matt and Julie was adorable, and her parents handled it as best they could.

I didn't pick up that Coach was trying to get kicked out of the game. Wow, cool then. I was wondering why he'd so spectacularly lost his shit after telling the players not to.

Jim said...

Buddy looked like a heart attack waiting to happen this whole episode. I liked watching his bulldog rage, that you always knew was there underneath that bluff, hearty, head of the boosters and the Rotary Club. I've been waiting for Lyla to turn on Buddy for a while. As someone said, if only a better actress had that part.

I don't have any kids, so maybe I'm not the best judge of these things, but I'm about the same age as the senior Taylors, should it really have been a shock that their 17 y.o. daughter was sexually active? And could any teenage boy be less threatening than Matt Saracen?

If Matt was taking the SATs the same day as Tyra, why didn't Julie suggest he help Tyra, or Julie herself? It was just a little weird to have Julie suggest Landry as a tutor, and then agree with him about the Giving Tree.

I've seen a lot of high school football games in my life and quite a few bad refs, but I don't see how those guys could have kept their jobs.

that was my thought too; maybe they wanted it to be clear to all the people who love FNL but hate football? apparently there are a lot of viewers like that

(Coming attractions people at networks are worse than AIG financial executives. We should tax them at 90%)

Stephanie said...

He's always been able to provide for his family (families, really, if you count the Panthers) and that's becoming harder for him.

So he provides for his family by blowing the money that was put aside for that very purpose? I understand that times are tough for Buddy, but the responsible thing to do is not to blow your entire wad on some half-baked scheme. What kind of person honestly believes that there's a sure thing in this economy? And if things are that bad, why didn't he sit Lyla down and explain he'd have to tap into her college fund so they could stay afloat, and then work out a plan to replenish it once things got better?

No, instead he foolishly and irresponsibly put all of his eggs in one basket and it all went down the tubes. I'm sorry, but I just can't muster up any sympathy for Buddy here.

Jennifer said...

I have no sympathy for Buddy either, he's just an idiot. Some people can't acknowledge reality until it slaps them bloody, and Buddy is one of them. He lives in la la la denial land about everything until it blows up in his face. I have no doubt he utterly convinced himself the risky deal was a sure thing.

renton said...

Loved the episode and the show but had a HUGE problem with the refs.

In Texas, isn't it safe to assume that for a high school playoff game that some TV station, even way out in Dillon would have had someone shooting the game? (Not to mention Panther fans with video cameras, the school's yearbook staff). No one would ever get away with anything like that, especially if the Panthers had challenged the refs beforehand.

(I've always thought the football was, by far, the weakest part of the show)

Missing calls THAT blatant would have been a huge story all over the state.

Hope there's a season 4, though.

Bob Timmermann said...

As I think about it more, if a high school head coach were ejected by a referee, I would bet that a forfeit would come soon after it. And the coach would be suspended. Or fired.

The NCAA football rule book, which is the only one that is online doesn't even have any provisions for a coach being ejected.

The only situation where I could picture a coach getting thrown out of a game would involve the coach hitting an official or opposing player. I don't believe Woody Hayes was thrown out of his last game as a coach for hitting a player, but it's likely that the officials didn't see it.

I need to get over this fixation on the referee issue...

I think what we really need to see is "Friday Night Lights: The Defense!"

R.A. Porter said...

To @renton and the rest saying the portrayal of the refs was unrealistic, I offer as counterargument the "legendary" game 6 of the Western Conference final between the Sacramento Kings and the LA Lakers. Bad enough that Doug Christie was called for an offensive foul when his *head* touched Kobe Bryant's *hand*. Bad enough that Ralph Nader got up in arms in the press. And that's far from the only time officiating has been that egregious at any level.

Google Dick Bavetta controversy to see what the real world looks like. And yeah, it happens in college and high school sports too.

Alf said...

In the pilot, Julie comforted Lyla in the halls of the hospital, but it was in silence. Having Lyla sleep over at the Taylors' was nice in that it gave them a moment together, but it was silly, plotwise. Lyla would be fine on her own for a night. And if not, she'd ask Tim to come over. Perhaps I am letting the ret-con of her age affect my view of the character, though. I think Mrs. T. should have insisted that Lyla come home with her rather than offer it.

Alf said...

I'm pouting about how the seatbelt moment wasn't in the hulu version I watched.

Also, the club has a sign outside that says "All ages night Saturday," which is the night the band plays there.

Lisa M said...

Add me to the list of people who cried during the Tammy/Julie scene. These two actresses are so consistently brilliant.

I think all the focus on Julie and Lyla in this episode really brought attention to Minka Kelly's weaknesses, as other commenters have noticed. In episode after episode Aimee Teegarten delves into the tough emotional world of the teenage girl, and Kelly mostly just looks pretty.

I admire how Teegarten is unafraid to be annoying and unlikable at times, in order to create a realistic character.

Mervis said...

"Also, the club has a sign outside that says "All ages night Saturday," which is the night the band plays there."

So that means the SAT test is over.

Also, to me the most unrealistic part of this episode was the way Coach barely knocks on the Saracin House door and then let's himself in rather quickly. We've seen him at numerous kid's doors and he has always knocked authoritativly and then patiently waiting. Not this time though when his daughter is in a post-coital glow. Oh well.