Welcome to the first GateCrashers review of Ted Lasso! I’ll try to be objective but I make no promises as it’s my favorite show. I will be getting into spoilers so if you haven’t watched today’s episode (what’s wrong with you?), go do that! I’ll still be here when you’re done.
Now, let’s dive into what happened with A.F.C. Richmond today!
Spoilers for Ted Lasso Season Two, Ep. 8 “Man City” Below
First off, before getting into those last 10 minutes of what is, I think, the best episode the show has produced, I need to talk about Wembley Stadium. I have no real connection to football (or soccer), it’s just never been something that’s grabbed me outside of some mild enjoyment during the Euros Championship. To me, football is not life, sorry Danny. But, Wembley is Wembley. It’s holy ground that gives off this aura, even when you just see it on your TV screen, and this episode conveys that. When the team first walks out onto the pitch you get the sense of grandeur and history expected of such a place.
Now, let’s circle back round to the actual story that happened in the episode. Let’s go with the steamy romance to start, shall we? OHMYGOD, Rebecca and Sam! So hot, and surprisingly sweet. Hannah Waddingham and Toheeb Jimoh play the unexpected connection the two characters find in each other perfectly. And did I mention how hot it was? Because damn! I’m very interested to see how this plays out and how it will go on to affect the team.
Then there’s Jamie Tartt (Phil Dunster), who has gone through such a radical change this season. You can tell he’s genuinely trying to be a team player, to feel like part of the family. He’s still the same selfish asshole, but he’s doing his best, and I’m on his side. And I don’t think there’s been a more satisfying moment on TV this year than seeing Jamie punch his deadbeat dad right in the face. That prick had it coming. Add in Roy (Brett Goldstein, not a CGI construct) coming in and comforting Jamie after this, despite them having been such staunch rivals previously, well, it warms the heart.
And finally, we come to Ted (Jason Sudeikis) and Doctor Sharon’s (Sarah Niles) continued bonding. Between Doc admitting she was scared and thanking Ted for being there, and Ted’s heartbreaking revelation, it’s good to see them growing closer. Speaking of Ted’s revelation, man, was that scene painful to watch. Sudeikis plays it perfectly. And it’s something I’ve suspected had happened since the conversation about barbecue sauce over a game of darts in Season One. But even having a pretty solid guess as to what was coming didn’t detract from the emotions I felt watching Ted reveal something he’s tried to keep buried down. It was a lot.
There was as always a lot of great small moments throughout this week’s episode I haven’t touched on, but just quickly; Higgins (Jeremy Swift) continues to be a delight, Coach Beard (Brendan Hunt) has two great moments this week between falling over the barrier and throwing Jamie’s dad through a door, and Roy telling his niece he knows she can be better than him. Great stuff as always.
Before I go, I do want to quickly talk about the detractors I mentioned in the title of this review. For those who don’t know, there’s been talk during this Season that the show has lost its way, and is going out of its way to be overly positive. I’ve never understood where they were coming from, as this positivity, mainly from Ted, was clearly due to him compensating for whatever demons he’s been dealing with. It was leading to an endpoint where this would all come to a head. And this episode just goes to prove that this was always the plan. Looking at those comments, it’s as if people forgot what a serialized story looks like.
Expect more Ted Lasso coverage from us over the next few weeks as we continue our look into this incredible show!