April 3, 2008

It's Only Football

But it's also SO MUCH MORE!

The best news I've heard since the writers strike came to a merciful end: Friday Night Lights lives to see another (abbreviated) season. Even more fortunately for me, I am a DirecTV subscriber so I'll be able to watch all 13 episodes of the third season several months before it airs on NBC. I have my beefs with DirecTV (don't even get me started on the $42 charge I can't get out of paying for 1/2 a day of their MLB package which I didn't even order!) but the fact that they helped save the best show on television gives them a big ol' pass with me for a good long while.

Now, while this is all fantastic news and I look desperately forward to more time with the residents of Dillon, Texas, I'm not without trepidation. I have read numerous reports from the writers and producers indicating that the third season would pick up the action several months after the second season left off. That was all well and good when they did it between seasons one and two because season one ended at an END. Season two ended abruptly in the middle of everything - including the football season - when production was halted by the strike and never picked back up.

Street's one-night-stand may or may not keep the baby but instead of seeing her make that decision or seeing Jason deal with it one way or another, we'll next see him as either a father or not? And what of the Tim/Lyla/Chris love triangle? I don't just want to see that play out, I need to. Not to mention the Panthers were struggling just to make the playoffs when last we saw them and now we'll skip ahead past the remainder of their season, the playoffs and the state championship and only find out if they successfully defended their title with exposition?

I trust the writers of the show implicitly because they make very few mistakes so bad they can't recover (the murder plot would be the notable exception, but it put Tyra and Landry front and center so it wasn't completely unforgivable - and it is dead now, pardon the pun, so we'll follow the lead of every person associated with the show and pretend it never happened) and Lord knows that the actors are so wonderful they can carry just about anything off with grace and beauty the likes of which I've never seen on television before (hi, Emmy voters? I'm not saying you have to nominate the entire cast but Kyle Chandler and Connie Britton are far and away the best actors on television right now, why can't you see that???). I just hope that whatever they do, they don't throw a bunch of new characters at us - mouthy, know-it-all girlfriends; Guatemalan maids; Swedes; teen Christians; reformed criminals - that we don't really care about and serve only to polarize the characters that we do care about and limit the number of scenes they share.

Truly my favorite scene of the entire second season came in the 13th of the 15-episode season titled "Humble Pie" when Jean came into Applebee's with a mix CD for Landry who was eating with Matt, Riggins, Smash, Santiago and at least two other football players. The scene lasted all of 90 seconds and almost nothing happened really, but it was the boys, hanging out like friends with EACH OTHER for the first time I could remember. More of that!

Also, if it's not too much trouble, less of Julie being bitchy to her mother and getting away with it and more of the Taylors in general because there can never be too much of them.

A tiny bit more football would be awesome too.

I'm just sayin'.

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