I really enjoyed the episode as a whole, but the Landry-Tyra plot really distressed me. It pushed the show to a place that I really wasn't expecting and I was quite genuinely *shocked*. I've been going round and round in my mind trying to make sense of it in character terms and I can't quite get there. Landry's father is a cop, yes? That makes it doubly unlikely that he'd make this decision, surely. If for no other reason than that he was sure his dad would clue on to something. I do see that Landry is very much influenced by Tyra, dangerously so, and I had expected the show to explore that... but not to this degree! For Tyra, I see that she's suspicious of the authorities, I see that she has no faith in the justice system (or any system!), and Adrianne's performance was wonderful, but I didn't feel the script really gave us much to work with in terms of understanding her decision. Gah! Colour me frustrated!
It's such a pity because until that point I'd been really enjoying seeing them interact. It was good continuity from the previous season and I was genuinely totally creeped out by Tyra's stalker. It seemed so realistic too that they managed to shrug the noises off as a skunk only to find that in fact the stalking's even worse than realised. I also thought it was really heartbreaking to see Tyra pinning her hopes on Landry, who as a protector is pretty weak and frightened himself. Of course, all of those plays perfectly to create the scenario that resulted in Landry hitting the guy with a pipe as he walked away. I was fine with everything up until then... but when they decided to drive the guy to hospital themselves, I was seriously worried. Why would you do that? Why not call an ambulance? I don't understand! And then that dreadful bridge scene.... *shudders*
I don't know where it will go from here but suddenly I'm a bit scared for my show.
However, the rest of the premiere was what I would usually expect from Friday Night Lights and I was absolutely delighted to have my show back! I was particularly happy to see that their ability to turn the tables and make me sympathetic to a character I was finding irritating has not diminished. Julie Taylor was driving me nuts through most of the episode until her speech to Coach in the car outside the bar. And then suddenly my heart went out to her--it IS hard, at 16, to think that you've got the perfect relationship and everything's all mapped out, that you're already turning into your parents. She's behaving as many a teenager might, and it was believable, I thought, that Julie might be drawn to a musician type rather than her straight-forward good-boy footballer boyfriend. I still really feel for poor Matt though.
The Coach--Mrs Coach relationship is as strong as ever, though under incredible pressure and I found the scene where she sat so silently and then burst into tears absolutely heartbreaking. It's so rare for her to not voice her concerns, it really gave me the feeling she was at the end of her emotional tether. :(
And wow, new!Coach is a total asshole! He makes Coach look like a pussycat. Wow! This is going to be interesting... I liked the Riggins scene because we know from last season that this kind of pushing Riggins really doesn't get you anywhere--as Jason points out. I love that he told Mr Garrety to get lost though. :D
And wow, Lyla! Way to waste an opportunity to grow as a person. *blinks* I was really warming to her towards the end of last season, but this smug self-righteous behaviour while also being a total bitch to her mother is not endearing her to me. I did love her exchange with Riggins though. And heeeee, how funny was the 'get your own Tim Riggins' ad?!
So, in short, I really hope that this Landry-Tyra plot doesn't drag the show down. I love Tyra but her actions here really challenge me. I was growing to like Landry but he's now coming across as incredibly weak-minded. I'm left hoping that one of them ends up confessing. But ugh, what a mess! *frets* Can we get back to the football?!