Season (Series?) finale. AFC Richmond plays their final match of the season.
Maybe it’s more appropriate to give the MVP to the Ted Lasso angle of this episode. It was very satisfying to see these characters verbally acknowledge the profound impact that this one man has had on each and every one of their lives. Of course, we’ve seen the impact throughout the show, but sometimes it’s nice to hear that you’ve done well rather than just knowing it without acknowledging it. It’s hard to deny that in three seasons of television, Ted Lasso’s character is simply one of the most unique television creations to come along in quite some time.
I’ve always thought of this character as kind of a Coach Taylor from Friday night lights kind of inspirational figure…except turned inside out. One of the great examples of what made this show great is the final speech that Ted gives to Richmond before they go out for the second half of their championship game. Sure, the speech is originally designed to uplift his team. But it also feels like Jason Sudeikis is looking into the camera and thanking the audience for embracing the character the way we have. What a wonderful impact this show has had in just three seasons. Just three.
This has been a messy season in terms of its storytelling. It’s been disjointed and trifling as f*** at certain points. But I’ll credit the end montage of this show to trying to close out everything with some dignity. All of the character points that weren’t touched on in the third season, all that much that was covered diligently in the previous two seasons before the messy storytelling took over…are actually covered here. Each one gives a satisfying bookend to your favorite supporting characters that makes sense, given what we know.
Yes, it should have happened three episodes ago. Yes, there is less dramatic poignancy involved because of this show having Nate’s resignation at West ham, and his hiring by AFC Richmond after all the bull**** he did in season 2 happening off off screen.
However, in just talking about the standalone scene and how it’s performed… it’s quite simply one of the best scenes in the history of this show. This should be Nick Mohammed’s submission to get the Emmy nomination that he deserves for this episode.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“Human beings are never gonna be perfect. The best we can do is to keep asking for help and accepting it when you can. And if you keep on doing that, you’ll always be moving towards the better.”
(Imagine artificial intelligence writing such a perfect statement for a show like this at such a perfect time. IT JUST CAN’T, PEOPLE)
THINGS I DIDN’T LIKE
This Love triangle bULL****
In my past reviews of episodes for the show, I’ve realized that there are some people out there who will defend almost every mistake that this show makes with their caps lock key activated and a bunch of exclamation points.
Even these people have to admit that after all the bonding that Roy and Jamie did throughout this and last season:
*The bro hug that occurred after Jamie’s father made an ass out of himself after the Man City game in the second season…
*After Jamie taught Roy how to ride a bike in Amsterdam…
*After Roy supported Jamie when he and Keely went to visit his childhood home…
*After Roy helped Jamie not only become the centerpiece of the team strategy after Zava retired but helped him become a representative of his national team as a result…
I can only assume even THEY can conclude that the final result of Keely’s connection between them and the overtly macho way they attempt to resolve things is an absolutely F****** b******* conclusion.
I guess at the end of the day, the message is that toxic masculinity can never be overcome. There’s no healing from it, no bonding with other men to confront it. It is a demon that will always rage. Like Daenerys Targaryen, when she hears the bells, it is something that’ll just be triggered within no matter how hard we try.
Oh, but not for Nate for some reason… even though he spent an entire season earning his status as the key villain of this show throughout season 2. Nope. He’s a good violin-playing boyfriend now. He doesn’t have one outwardly toxic moment this entire season. For some reason, we’ve saved that inexplicable (and yes, unforgivable) act of toxic masculinity towards Keely, of all people, for JAMIE AND F****** ROY!
Quite simply the most underwhelming television villain that there’s ever been. The conclusion of his storyline makes me wonder if he needed as much screen time as he actually got. This is a season that has characteristically had key plot moments happen off-screen, only for the viewer to see the aftermath of said moments.
Quite literally, all of Rupert’s essential plot points happen off-screen. It’s stupid. That’s all I can say without going into the spoilerly territory, but it’s worth bringing up here.
Ultimately, what can be said about this episode can be summed up in a sports analogy. It’ll be easy to follow, just bear with me here:
Imagine you turn on a sports contest and see one team losing by 100 points. Then you watch the losing team score 50 straight points and cut their deficit in half. But then the game ends. Although you watched a team working very hard to try and come back… They still lose the game.
It’s respectable that they tried their best to dig themselves out of the hole they dug, but in the end, they still lost the game.
In this instance, the comeback attempt was this final episode…
But the game itself was the entire third season of Ted Lasso.
TED LASSO is streaming on Apple TV now