Sometimes sitcoms change. Sometimes they go from single-cam to multi-cam. Sometimes they jettison full cast members and stars and rebrand themselves. And sometimes they slowly and gradually just become dramas. And TED LASSO definitely falls in that category.

If you needed proof of this, just look at the runtimes of episodes between seasons 1 and 3. It’s so funny how the show started out as a 30 min sitcom before having episodes longer than THE MANDALORIAN’s weekly average. And that, if anything, should signify the show’s evolution into a drama. This is relevant because I think this week’s episode, while still full of very funny moments, felt a lot like a drama in many respects.

BIG WEEK really explores the dark side of anger and toxic masculinity. Through the character arcs of Nate and the entire Richmond Team, as well as the always unwelcome presence of Rupert, we see what happens when anger ends up consuming you. When bottled up, rage and emotion poison you from the inside like carbon monoxide. Which is why the one person in this episode to “open the window and let it out” ends up being the one who makes it out of this a better person.

Ted Lasso has become a poster child, both on the show and in real life, for positivity incarnate. He’s a pure-hearted character who’s not without his flaws. And that’s what we love most about him. Some may question the realistic nature of this series, asking themselves why anyone would keep a Football manager who knows nothing about football around. And while the case has been made for why for 3 years, it’s especially most palpable in BIG WEEK.

The episode definitely puts a lot of our heroes in the worst places imaginable: dark, angry, desperate places. And that’s hard to watch, but it’s also ultimately a good thing. Because it’s going to give our hero a purpose and a reason for us to root for him and the betterment of the team and the people around him. This episode also puts all of this in a realistic light. Yes, Ted helped improve the lives of everyone at Richmond. But people don’t stay fixed. That’s what makes humanity so complex and full of potential.

In any case, if you don’t believe in Ted Lasso and the good he does for Richmond, look no further than 2 places: 1) the evolution of the Jaime Tart character, and 2) Season 3, Episode 4 – BIG WEEK.

The latest episode of TED LASSO is now streaming on Apple TV+.

Mike Manalo

Born a Slytherin. Baptized into Marvel. Bitten by a Radioactive DC fan. And raised a Jedi, Mike Manalo is a silent guardian, a watchful protector… a Dark Nerd!

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