As I’ve said before, Friday Night Lights is my favorite TV drama of all time. Season five is now off to a good start. Check out what our favorite Dillon residents are up to:
Tim Riggins has only appeared in one of the first four episodes. He’s still in prison, but hopefully he’ll be released soon. They shortened Tim’s five-year sentence to one year for good behavior. I hope he’ll get out of the big house in time for a grand reunion with Becky.
Becky Sproles–Becky’s loser father and stepmother have moved into Becky’s house in the absence of her mother. Supposedly, Becky’s mom is off working on a cruise ship somewhere, but I still don’t get why her father and stepmom are in town. Her father hardly ever came to visit before, so why does he come now that she’s almost grown? Becks has a blow-up with her stepmom and goes to Billy asking if she can stay there for a while. Mindy hates the idea because Becky is young and cute and likes to wear daisy dukes around the house, but Billy reminds Mindy that he promised Tim he’d look after Becks. So Becky moves in with the Riggins family, but Becky’s dad calls from the road (he’s a truck driver) and demands that Becky go back to the house and stay with her family. Mindy drives Becky home, and she notices that the loser stepmom and dad are yelling at Becky and grabbing her by the arm. Mindy steps in and tells them to get the hell off. She drives Beck’s back to the Riggins-Collette house to stay with her and Billy. I loved seeing Mindy stand up for Becks. It’s about time somebody did. Speaking of having a backbone…
Vince Howard stands up to his father. Yep, Vince’s heretofore absent father appears in season five. He’s out of prison and Vince’s mom wants to forgive him. Vince can’t forgive and forget, and he certainly doesn’t want to make nice. He resents that his father wasn’t there when they needed him. Michael B. Jordan, the actor who plays Vince, has done the most memorable acting of any cast member so far this season. He repeatedly confronts his father, and he steals my heart in almost every episode.
Tami Taylor–Tami is now a guidance counselor at East Dillon. She is faced with counseling Maura (a newcomer this season) who likes to party hard. Maura is caught on camera funneling liquor at a Lions’ party. The video is uploaded on the web, and the entire school feels the backlash from it. They even have a guest speaker who comes to talk to everyone about responsibility and alcohol. Later, Tami catches Maura in a supply closet with some random guy she was about to hook up with. All of this gives Tami the opportunity to condescendingly counsel Maura about her behavior. Tami’s other grey hair this season is Epyck (sp?), another hell-raising young lady we’ve never seen before. In four short episodes, Epyck has chain-smoked, ditched class, fought with a boy during one of Tami’s organized homework sessions, and attempted to crash a school dance.
Coach Taylor–Not much going on for Coach so far this season. Though the Lions have beaten one of the top teams in the state, they remain unranked. Coach challenges them to try their hardest to make it to state. I don’t know if they can. Last year was a rebuilding year, and I guess we’re led to believe that under Coach T’s tutelage, Luke and Vince can lead the team to a winning season. We’ll have to see about that…
Julie Taylor and Landry Clark–After holding Landry and Julie back a year, the FNL writers finally decided to let them graduate. Landry’s last scene is with Matt’s grandma. She “hugs his neck,” and he drives off for Rice University. Julie departs for an unnamed school somewhere in Texas. So far this season, we’re given several scenes of Julie in college. I think it’s odd that Julie is the one FNL character that we’ve followed outside of Dillon. I’d rather keep up with Matt in Chicago, or Smash playing football at Texas A&M, or even Tim in prison than to follow Julie off to school. Anyway, Julie meets a teacher’s assistant that she’s obviously attracted to. She finds out that he’s married, but that doesn’t stop her from going to bed with him (at least twice so far). Scandalous! What would Tami Taylor say?
Buddy Garrity–Buddy has given up on selling used cars. He now owns a bar in Dillon. His ex-wife calls repeatedly from California to report that Buddy Junior is actin’ a fool. Buddy may even be smoking pot! Bud Senior tells his wife to send the boy home to Dillon. When he arrives, he’s disrespectful of his father, ogles Tami Taylor’s titties, steals his father’s ride, gets drunk after breaking into Buddy’s bar, and forces Buddy to play tough. And by playing tough, I mean that Buddy wrestles him to the ground and sits on him. And then he puts him on the football team, I think.
I’m really loving the new season, but it all feels so bittersweet. At the end of each new episode, I remind myself we’re one step closer to the finale. I don’t want Friday Night Lights to ever end.