Joe Dyton

Friday Night Lights recap: “Hello, Goodbye”

In Friday Night Lights on February 17, 2009 at 9:13 pm

 Hello Dillon Panther fans! In this week’s episode, we bid farewell to a Dillon great and welcomed a new scoreboard, a rodeo star and possibly a new QB1. Here’s how it happened….

Smash is going to college!

Hey, no point burying the lede, right? The main, and the best, storyline of this episode was this one. I loved that coach Taylor thought rescheduling Smash’s tryout was unacceptable and marched right on the field and told the head coach if he didn’t give Smash a look today, that he may not get another chance. I loved how Smash played the Big Call as if it were just a call about his shoulder pads. I loved the moment of triumph when he told him mom that he got in and the Williams family celebration. I loved the final two on two football game with Smash, Riggins, Matt and Landry at Hermann Field before they head to A&M. But most of all, I loved the final scene between Coach and Smash. It was a little short, but the point got across. It was a treat watching a humble and grateful Smash thanking Coach for everything that he had done for him. I could go on a lot longer about how much I liked how Smash’s exit was handled, but there were other storylines in this episode like…

Tami vs. the Boosters

Oh, poor Tami. All she wants is for her students to have good supplies and a fully-staffed faculty. How dare she want what’s best for the school! The heck with that darn school-learnin’, Dillon High needs its Jumbrotron! At least in the boosters’ eyes they do. I really felt for Tami in this episode. She knew she was fighting a losing battle, especially with her less-than-successful “stalking” of the superintendent. When he told her that the boosters gave that money for a Jumbotron, she knew her fate was sealed. I still find it hard to believe a decision like this would fly, but football is taken pretty seriously in Texas.

The best part of this storyline was watching Eric being the “prinicpal’s husband” that Tami had been dying to meet. His pep talk to her about fighting the boosters even if she knew she was going to lose was phenomenal. I’m as big a fan of football as anyone, but my favorite part of this show is the interaction between the Taylor family. It’s so real.

Tyra, Landry and the rodeo cowboy

As much as I felt for Tami in this episode, I felt just as bad for Landry. The poor guy goes through the painful wisdom tooth removal, only to find out Tyra blew him off to make time with rodeo cowboy, Cash. The Smash-Coach good-bye scene was the best of the hour, but the Tyra-Landry blowup which ended with her saying she was choosing Cash came in a close second. It was a flurry of incomplete, interrupted sentences until Tyra finally laid it out there and sent Landry combing through his power ballad collection. Poor guy.

And I liked the not-so-subtle touch by the costume department of putting Cash in a black cowboy hat. In the old cowboy movies, the villain usually wore the black hat. It could be a coincidence, but something tells me Cash isn’t the charming well-behaved cowboy he seems to be.

The Saracen’s

I was glad to see Matt’s mom, Shelby offer to stick around Dillon for awhile to help him take care of his grandmother. I think one of the most bizarre situations regarding this series was Matt having to go to school, play football, work and take care of his grandmother without any help. The kid’s a miracle worker, I tell you. With that said, it was a bit of surprise he wasn’t interested in Shelby’s offer, you know since she ditched him all of those years ago. I can’t blame him for not wanting her around, but seeing that this is her senior year and all, this isn’t the best time for him to be proud. I was happy that he (and his grandmother) finally came around. I loved when Grandma Saracen said she could have done more for Shelby when she left and when Matt asked what she meant her reply was, “I meant what I said, let’s not make a big ol’ soap opera out of it.” She’s the best. Now that Matt’s got some help back at home, he’s got some bigger fish to fry. Such as…

Is a quarterback controversy brewing in Dillon?

Last week’s loss coupled with a bye week was not a good thing for young Saracen. All that did was give the town (and Eric’s coaching staff) time to consider switching to the golden boy, J.D. McCoy. Like I’ve said over and over, I just can’t understand why there is any debate about this. Why in the world would people expect a coach to replace a senior with state title under his belt with a freshman? But, it looks like that could happen as Coach is struggling with the decision. His struggling did lead to the best exchange of the episode though:

Eric: “I need a drink.”

Tami: “We have wine at the house.”

Eric: “I need a scotch-flavored drink.”

So, after clearing his head, Eric took the easy way out and named Matt and J.D. co-starters. That can’t mean good things for Matt who after being QB1 for two seasons will be sharing his snaps with a freshman. Next week’s game should be very interesting.

What did you all think of this episode? Did the writers give Smash a good farewell? Will coach Taylor’s two-head quarterback scheme work? Feel free to comment below!

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