Round Table: "Last Days of Summer"

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As fans gather in our forum to discuss each character and story line, the Friday Night Lights Insider staff has come together to share our thoughts on the first episode of the best show on television in a round table format.

The Round Table discussion topics for "Last Days of Summer" include Julie and Matt, the new coach's future, and the recalcitrant Tim Riggins ...

1. Will Riggins join Christ Teen Messengers?

pantherpride4lyfe: If only to try to redeem himself in the eyes of Lyla Garrity ... and possibly get in her pants again. Note: This plan may backfire horribly, but thinking things through is not exactly Tim Riggins' forte.

Saracen7: Not a chance. This is a guy who likes threesomes and beer. While he's a good friend, he's not about to let Jesus in. At least not until his third DUI.

ClearEyes: No. He likes drinking and having sex out of wedlock too much.

2. Julie and Matt: Built to last, or in the past?

Saracen7: I just love Julie and Matt. They're two the cutest, most realistic teen characters on TV. There's great chemistry between the actors, you find yourself falling in love right along with them. Julie's fears are warranted, but she'll come around and see that QB-1 is a pretty darn good catch.

ClearEyes: Built to last. Don't get me wrong, they may break up before I finish writing this answer. But Julie will eventually realize that there are far worse things in life than becoming like her parents. And, familiar with audibles, number-seven will be there with open shoulder pads when she does.

pantherpride4lyfe: Much as I'd love to make a "How Swede it is" pun here, Julie's conversations with Coach should tell her Matt is worth the effort.

  • Jason Street and New Coach
  • The Tennessee Tyrant

3. How long until Coach Bill MacGregor gets the ax?

ClearEyes: Sorry, I've read a few Friday Night Lights spoilers. I abstain.

pantherpride4lyfe: I say the Panthers begin their title defense 0-2, with the Tennessee Tyrant's coaching methods to blame, and heads start to roll. Then Jason Street becomes interim coach and rights the ship!

Saracen7: Despite what he would surely tell you, Smash can't carry this team all by himself. This new coach clearly isn't a good fit. Oh no. Buddy Garrity and his fellow boosters aren't gonna stand for such heavy-handedness ... or losses.

4. Worse omission: Riggins' heart in practice, Smash from the entire script?

pantherpride4lyfe: I realize they've got a big cast, but where was the great Mr. Williams this week? Hopefully he'll be more prominently featured in all his hot-dogging, trash-talking glory when the Panthers return to the gridiron.

Saracen7: Riggins' heart was sorely lacking, and while the coach's abusing of him was excessive, Tim sort of had it coming. I'm going with Smash being absent from the episode, though, if only because I so thoroughly enjoy scenes with Smash and his mom. Great recurring character.

ClearEyes: Smash, baby. Give Riggins a few Red Bulls and he'll be ready to go. But Smash needs to feel the love in order to be the Smash. Baby.

5. Finally, the plot twist: too much, or just what the show needed?

Saracen7: What is this, Days of Our Lives? I'm disappointed. I want more Matt and Julie, Coach and Mrs. Coach, Jason and... everyone. Friday Night Lights is great specifically because it doesn't rely on such nonsense. I don't get it.

ClearEyes: Too much. The best part about Landry and Tyra's relationship was his realistic, cute hesitance to touch her arm. Now? The only arm we'll be hearing about with these two is the long one of the law.

pantherpride4lyfe: While it takes away from the integrity of the show to have such a melodramatic plot twist, if the writers make sure Landry and Tyra deal with the fallout from it believably, it can work. And if this is what it takes to boost the ratings and keep Friday Night Lights from getting canceled, so be it.

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  • Pretty Tyra

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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I really hope Riggins doesn't join Lyla's little cult (only calling it that because I can't remember the name and am way too lazy to scroll back up and look)! If he never speaks to Lyla again, it'll be too soon for me. lol

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