Friday, March 27, 2009

Friday Night Lights - A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall

Like the dark clouds over Dillon in this week's episode ("A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall,") NBC's impending renewal notices have had FNL fans reaching for their umbrella for the past couple months. But with the advent of Spring comes the rumors that not only will the series be renewed, but that it will get two 13 episodes seasons, thanks to a continuing deal with DirecTV (EW's Michael Ausiello says it "will be announced any day now"). So there's that.

But getting to the action, there's just one more game to win to get to State, and like the first season's penultimate game ("Mud Bowl,") everybody involved needs a shower afterwards. Tim calls the game "one for the ages," and it did seem to provide a lot more drama than any other thus far this season. The axiom goes, when the ground is wet, run the ball, and Joe McCoy expects his blue-eyed son to follow that rule, regardless of whether Coach Taylor calls the plays or not. Coach sticks to his game plan, no matter what, because COACH TAYLOR DON'T PLAY NO GAMES. The Panthers may have won in the end (garnering the win boldly like they went for renewal - going for two!) but it was on a pass, and dadgummit if that didn't fly in the face of Pa McCoy's rule.

That, of course, leads us to one of the storms that's been brewing all season, that of the relationship between QB1 and his control-freak of a father. But even the darkest of clouds could not have prepared us for the rain of paternal punches that fell upon poor J.D. in the Applebees parking lot (hittin' good in the neighborhood). Most of the aftermath is yet to come, but having the McCoys not named Joe seeking shelter at the Taylors fit with both themes raised in the episode, that being shelter and division.

Of the other storylines involving division and shelter, Matt and grandma Lorraine's story resonated the most, even as short as it was. Her deterioration has been slow and drawn out, but now that Matt's about to graduate, decisions have to be made. Seeing her cling to her slippers felt all to real, and provided just enough levity to make Matt's quick change of mind more believable. She needs the kind of shelter that he can't provide on his own or with Shelby in tow.

Meanwhile, Lyla is quickly finding out shelter with the Riggins boys is not really shelter at all, but just another storm waiting to happen. As much as Buddy deserves the pain he gets here, I can't help but feel sorry for him hearing Ernest Tubb's pleading "Have You Ever Been Lonely" play on the radio as he talks with a suddenly sage Tim. Lyla finally forgives and returns, but of course, even in victory, karma still comes to Buddy, as she's now likely to follow Tim to San Antonio State thanks to daddy losing her college savings. That's "Karma's a B*tch #2" for Buddy if you count the redistricting (more division theme) that the school faces thanks to his insistence of funds going to a scoreboard instead of solving the school's educational needs. That makes it Karma 2, Buddy 0.

The Tyra/Landry stuff was mostly a retread of the past, as slyly referenced with song "Same Mistake Twice" by The Old Nationals playing in the background. The other music in the episode was dominated by more of Evan Johns (three songs,) all pulling from the same great Austin rocking classic Rollin' Through the Night. Come to think of it, the other FNL episode that featured three Evan Johns songs was another McCoy-centric one ("The Trouble with Being J.D. McCoy,") so perhaps Johns is the chorus for that family's ills. If so, it's not a bad one to have, punching papa or not. Speaking of the McCoys, the episode's title of course refers to the classic song from Bob Dylan, and some lyrics to the song naturally sprang to mind while thinking about their storyline:

Oh, who did you meet my blue-eyed son?
Who did you meet, my darling young one?
...I met a young girl, she gave me a rainbow
I met one man who was wounded in love
I met another man who was wounded in hatred
And it's a hard(x5) rain's a-gonna fall.
Playlist: Friday Night Lights - Episode 3.11
1. "If I Had My Way" - Evan Johns & His H-Bombs - Lyla beats Billy at a video game.
2. "Same Mistake Twice" - The Old Nationals - Tyra runs into Landry while shopping for the bridal shower
3. "Have You Ever Been Lonely (Have You Ever Been Blue)?" - Ernest Tubb and Mel Tillis - Buddy asks to talk with Tim
4. "Lay Back Down" Eric Lindell - Landry helps Tyra with the bridal shower preparations
5. "Hark The Herald Angels Sing" - A choir sings as Tim takes Lyla to her church
6. "Best Friend" - Mario Matteoli - Landry & Tyra set up for the bridal shower
7. "Bar-B-Cutie" - Evan Johns & His H-Bombs - The game starts
8. "Rollin' Through The Night" - Evan Johns & His H-Bombs - The Panthers win against the Mustangs

Previously: The Giving Tree (Episode 3.10)

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