Talking Television and Values.

Friday Night Lights Shines With Some Dim Moments

Posted by Travis R Grant on October 4, 2006

As I have commented in the past, I was both excited and hesitant about yesterday’s premier of Friday Night Lights. I was excited because I was looking forward to seeing Kyle Chandler back in a starring role. I was hesitant because I figured that this show would be a miss when it came to production. But bigger than that, I was nervous that this show would push the line when it comes to values.

Chandler did a great job. We can see that Coach Taylor is a strong, silent personality that will guide his team by example more than by yelling. I think that he will do a great job. He will be different from most coaches we have seen on television before. That will add to the nature of this show.

I was concerned as I watched this that it was moving too slowly. And honestly the first 15 minutes were tiring. However, it really picked up after the game started. It became a very intense and wonderful half hour of television.

As I have admitted in the past, I am not a football fan. However, this show managed to put team support, love of the game, and rooting for the losing team high on my list for at least that half hour.

However, my second major concern with this show is still aching at me. This episode managed to show teens in situations were it appeared that there was drinking and sex.

Don’t get me wrong both of these things happen in our society. However, television glamorizing it doesn’t help these huge moral and health problems. Television used to have an unwritten no-teen-sex policy.

The only saving grace and the reason that I might be watching again next week will be because Coach Taylor managed on two separate incidents to let the teens know that this wasn’t going to happen on his watch.

The first incident was when Tim Riggins (Taylor Kitsch) came to practice half drunk. Coach put him through the wringer. He let him know what it feels like to be the other team’s whipping boy, by having some tackle practice with Tim as the tackle dummy.

The sexual incident was simply Coach’s walking between a couple that was getting too close during a community party celebrating the up coming first game of the season. Both of these were a little too subtle for my tastes. However, I also think that they are very fitting for Coach’s character. I look forward to further such interventions.

I haven’t committed to this show for the whole season yet. These concerns of mine are still there, and based on next weeks episode preview, I might be writing a different article next week. However, I like it so far. I just hope that NBC doesn’t lose me next week.


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