I’d saved up the season of Friday Night Lights so I could watch it all at once, it’s definitely a series that works best in large chunks, the episodic elements are fairly minor and ironically usually confined to the least important element of the show – the football.
Football for this show is the catalyst, it simultaneously powers and effects every story and every character, but the show isn’t about the football, it’s about the effect that it has on everyone. So really this show is about people and their lives. Most of the kids on the show are at the point where they’re deciding who they want to be and what they want to do and it’s amazing and moving to see that happen to such realistic characters. I really care about each and every character on the show, I may not like them or want to be their friend, but I really feel invested in their lives.
Beyond the amazing acting and delicate script, this is one of the most beautiful shows on television. It has a filming style all it’s own – rough and freehand as if the camera is a character standing in the rooms, but then smooth and professional for the football sequences. So much of the characters comes through with glances and tiny expressions and the camera manages to catch them all without making them feel staged.
After a slight slump in season two this show is back and better than ever. My only concern is that I’m not sure how they’ll manage next year with so many primary characters being seniors and theoretically moving on. However this year, this season… I think it’s the best thing I’ve seen all year.