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chrismo

Friday Night Lights

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The show didn't make an overwhelming impression on me, nor an underwhelming impression. I was reminded once again that "kick their ass" has now apparently become acceptable English for the 8 p.m. "family hour" (ha!), and I also picked up on a "hell" in there somewhere. The episode felt a little overloaded, though. Lots of characters, a few story threads -- it felt a bit rushed.

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D'oh! At 9:30, I realized the show was on at 8. That darn switcheroo they're pulling next week - giving "Friday Night Lights" the 10 p.m. "Studio 60" slot - confused me. Dang.

My wife made an interesting point about viewer confusion that maybe explains SOME of the show's lack of audience. She's been meaning to watch it (I knew she's been on Kyle Chandler withdrawal since the demise of "Early Edition", and she certainly isn't going to watch FNL because of the football), but she thought the show was on, um ... Friday nights. Then again, with in the age of Tivo and all, that probably doesn't explain anything about viewership.

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I think that's great.

Every week I think "this will be the episode that turns me off the show", but by the end I can't wait for next Tuesday.

I love the second string QB's story.

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my review Edited by Darrel Manson

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The whole season is available at nbc.com, so those like me who never started watching it can catch up during the summer.

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Yesterday I picked up the full season 1 of Friday Night Lights on DVD. It cost me a staggeringly (low) $18.

Plus, it has a money-back guarantee if you don't like it.

I've never seen a network support a TV show to this extent: they're practically saying SEE ME!! I'M REALLY GOOD!!

And so last night I watched the first two eps, and my wife joined in the middle.

We're hooked.

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Just noticed the link I posted for my review went to my Dexter review. i've fixed it now.

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Is anyone watching season 2? I am worried about the

Landry/Tyra murder

storyline, but so far the

Lyla/Riggins faith

storyline feels really authentic to me.

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Is anyone watching season 2? I am worried about the

Landry/Tyra murder

storyline, but so far the

Lyla/Riggins faith

storyline feels really authentic to me.

Yep. The

Tami/Julie/Eric/"your baby is crying"

storyline is, wow, just an awesome story. Also, regarding the church scene this past week... I'm thoroughly convinced that was a real church, a real event, with a real choir, singing songs from Delirious (yay!) and Gateway Worship (nay...).

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Does anyone else feel like they must've totally shaken up the writing staff between seasons? Either that, or the network has put some serious pressure on them to sexy up the storylines to try to grab some ratings?

The Landry/Tyra storyline is terrible - so bad that it threatens to completely bring down the rest of the show with it. Not to mention little things like the "where's your watch? your grandfather will want to see it" contrivances that were completely, thankfully, absent from the writing last season. Also, file the "too tough coach" turning point as something that you couldn't help but see coming.

The Taylor family storyline is still a great one, but sometimes I wonder if that's not just because of the performances. I don't know who the actors are who play Tami and Eric, but I've always thought they were fantastic.

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What happened to this thread? Did the terror of Season 2 turn everyone off?

I've been obsessed with the FNL story since reading the book in grade school, but I can't get over how great the TV show is. Season 2 was a bit much -- the Landry/Tyra murder was awful, though I appreciated their eventually ending up together. Season three completely redeems season two's writing, though with some (perhaps) undesirable results for the show's thematic push. Either way, it was a breath of fresh air. Is anyone else watching season four?

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What happened to this thread? Did the terror of Season 2 turn everyone off?

I've been obsessed with the FNL story since reading the book in grade school, but I can't get over how great the TV show is. Season 2 was a bit much -- the Landry/Tyra murder was awful, though I appreciated their eventually ending up together. Season three completely redeems season two's writing, though with some (perhaps) undesirable results for the show's thematic push. Either way, it was a breath of fresh air. Is anyone else watching season four?

Season 4 is the best yet. Anyone who stopped watching in Season 2 is missing out.

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Just a reminder, if you didn't catch Season 4's original run on DirecTV, it starts this Friday on NBC.

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As a general rule, I don't believe in the quality of most network TV shows anymore. The acting and storytelling usually seems very poor in quality. Thus, my expectations for this show were really low. But as I've been progressing, I can't help but be surprised and impressed. I don't know how something this good was allowed to go on for five season on NBC.

The strength of the Taylor marriage is compelling. The way that their love for each other combines with each of their individual passions to help these kids is a picture of living Christianity that I've haven't seen on TV for a long time. Coach Taylor is a hero. His passion for being a surrogate father to fatherless and broken kids is not just impressive, it's ... well, it's inspiring. He is molding young, angry and hurt boys into being young men - along with all the responsibility, gentility, and self-sacrifice that being a man requires. He doesn't just tell them what to do, and sometimes he doesn't even have to use words, because he leads for his own personal example. Tami brings the same spirit to her work in the school system ... and her entire being is a rock and refuge for girls who need to be taught similar lessons about self-respect and responsibility. I'm trying to remember if I've ever seen anything quite like it. Even the way that husband and wife resolve their conflicts in this story is surprisingly self-sacrificial.

I'm a strong lifelong football fan. And while the show exhibits how fanatical football fandom can be damaging (psychologically, emotionally and sometimes even physically), it also shows why so many of us love the game. Coach Taylor takes joy in it, and his joy is infectious to the young men he is leading. The way that he uses the game to teach commitment, leadership and bravery is an example that anyone watching the show can aspire to. The game provides an outlet to channel certain proclivities and character traits, that are easily used for evil, for something good and commendable instead. Without going back into another discussion about cultural ideas on masculinity, the show also shows how certain masculine character traits can be destroying and damaging when they are channeled in the wrong way. The balance between the two is rare.

I'll comment more as I have more time to continue farther through the show, but for right now, I'm pretty impressed. Thanks and Kudos to everyone who has recommended it.

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Season 2 has one really stupid plotline. Otherwise, Friday Night Lights is great from start to finish. The Taylors are my favorite on-screen depiction of marriage ever. Glad you're enjoying it.

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Season 2 has one really stupid plotline. Otherwise, Friday Night Lights is great from start to finish. The Taylors are my favorite on-screen depiction of marriage ever. Glad you're enjoying it.

Yes and yes, and yes and yes. The ways they handle cast transitions is mostly good, too (one hangs on longer than I would have preferred).

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Season 2 has one really stupid plotline. Otherwise, Friday Night Lights is great from start to finish. The Taylors are my favorite on-screen depiction of marriage ever. Glad you're enjoying it.

Selfish characters learning how to be selfless and loving. Angry characters learning how to be gentle. Bullying characters learning how to be kind to the vulnerable. Weak characters learning how to be strong. Strong characters learning how to be weak. Privileged characters learning how to overcome prejudice. Damaged characters learning how fight against impossible odds. Stereotypical characters acting against their own stereotypes. Loners learning friendship and brotherhood for the very first time. And all, somehow, with only a minimal amount of cliches or melodrama. It'd be hard not to enjoy it.

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The ways they handle cast transitions is mostly good, too (one hangs on longer than I would have preferred).

Yeah...I'm with you there, although I do think it speaks to how difficult it is for these young football stars--or anyone--to extricate themselves from Dillon, for better or worse.

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Season 2 has one really stupid plotline. Otherwise, Friday Night Lights is great from start to finish. The Taylors are my favorite on-screen depiction of marriage ever. Glad you're enjoying it.

Season 4 has another stupid plotline.

FNL has the reverse curse of the first round of Star Trek movies. Seasons 1,3, and 5 are must-owns. Seasons 2 & 4 are rentals.

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Finished the series. It's not perfect, but no show ever is. It aired on Network Television - always, in my opinion, a huge disadvantage in terms of producing quality. And yet, it's a great show. I was hesitant to start all over again going into Season 4, but then the story in 4 turned out to be just as good, if not better, than the character arcs that ran through the first three seasons. So many little moments, that, by doing so little, still conveyed so much:

- when Vince tells Coach Taylor that no one has been there to teach him how to be better

- when Coach Taylor gives Vince his first University interest letters

- when Mindy Riggins, of all people, tells Becky to get back in the car, and then later starts showing a genuine interest in her

- when Mindy says “You’re not going to be one of the boys that comes in here, are you?” to her baby son

- when loser Billy Riggins turning into a surrogate father figure to Luke Cafferty

- Vince walking up to Coach Taylor’s door and then walking away, and then going to his dad, and seeing the righteous but dangerously quiet rage in his father’s eyes

I'm impressed.

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Season 4 is my favorite season. Billy and Mindy Riggins turned out to be so much more than I thought they were. Haphazard at times, but with so much heart.

I love how they revisited the abortion question in season 5, in the back room of the Landing Strip. Even just that one brief conversation added so much weight and nuance to an already thoughtful storyline.

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