Friday Night Lights Review: "Swerve"

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Some kids just aren't ready to fly the coop. In "Swerve" we realize that Julie Taylor is one of them. We all saw how Julie got in over her head with the TA, but crashing her car to avoid going back? That was beyond.

At the beginning of the season I wasn't sure what Julie's storyline really added to the overall plot of the show, but now it appears it was to set up to show Julie's struggles with leaving Dillon and test the strength of the Taylors. Once Eric and Tami found out the truth about the crash, you could see the pain on their faces. In all five seasons of FNL I've never seen Eric leave a practice early or show up to a game late.

Angry Coach/Father

Once Eric and Tami found out the truth about the crash, you could see the pain on their faces. In all five seasons of FNL I've never seen Eric leave a practice early or show up to a game late.

Another character who got sidelined this week was Vince. He was flying high in all of his quarterback glory when he got an unwelcome visitor. Last season Vince almost sold his soul to get his mother into rehab. The guy who helped him out came back and wanted 5 grand in 2 days. After threats to both Vince and Jess, Vince is convinced to ask Coach for help. However, we see him change his mind and take the risk to ask Ornette instead.

Ornette was willing to violate his probation to help out his son. Not that I would ever advocate beating the crap out of someone, but damn that kid had it coming. Ornette demonstrated that not only do you not threaten a man who has been locked up in the joint for years, but you also don't threaten a man who is willing to do anything to protect and win back his family.

Of course not all of your strongest relationships are with the family you're born into, but sometimes rather with the family you build for yourself and the bonds you create. Friday Night Lights has always emphasized this ideal and the latest example was Billy and Luke. Billy is nostalgic, crying and watching Tim's highlight reel when Luke shows up drunk looking for Becky.

They were both looking for someone to talk to. Luke needed a mentor to help him deal with TMU's rejection and Billy missed his little brother. In typical Riggins fashion, Billy went from reprimanding Luke for drinking before a game day to drinking with him. I loved the scene they had in the Riggins backyard and foresee a good relationship between these two. On a sidenote, didn't there used to be a big underground empty pool back there?

The title "Swerve" was all about what happens when your life is thrown a curve-ball and how you deal with that. For Julie she needs to decide how to handle her affair, for Luke it's about putting heart back into his game, for Vince it's dodging old demons while pushing forward, and for Billy it's about how to make up for the fact that his brother went to jail for him.

This episode seemed to be laying the groundwork for the future. For anyone wondering if we will be seeing more of the original characters, I think this latest development with Julie and the constant reminders of Tim are a surefire sign that we will be. Bonds and strength will be tested in upcoming episodes, but knowing this crew, they will find a way to make it work. I, for one, am very eager to see how it all plays out.


Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (9 Votes)
C f ohara

Also Eric is going to get recruited himself it looks like. Will he go back to college and secure Vince and Luke as his prized recruits. If so I bet Billy is named head coach of the Lions. It would be fitting. The pre-game speech was a bit of foreshadowing I think. Also loved the balls on Julie telling Tammi what she needed was to maybe go to Europe. Yeah that'll happen.

C f ohara

I'm a little worried about Ornette's motivations though about protecting Vince. He must have said five times to just stay focussed on football. I think he sees a meal ticket in Vince and looks to get involved with the college recruiting from the previews. While i really liked his speech at the table about his time in jail, I can't help but think of Cam Newton's dad here. He did have a great line as well when he told Vince "let's go be social, ladies be waitin." I so wanted to see more of Tim's recruiting video. I thought Billy should have had Luke watch it. He did a great job with the pre game speech. Eric was dynamic as ever and said volumes with his actions and behavior. The scene where he watched Gracie sleeping as Julie looked in was so telling.

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Friday Night Lights Season 5 Episode 6 Quotes

Let me tell you something, it's every coach's dream to experience the highest level of idiocy that his team can muster and gentlemen, collectively us coaches, we are living a dream.

Coach Taylor

Try not to trip over your ego when you're running!

Jess [to Vince]