Friday Night Lights, Season 5

When You Get Past the Football and Porn, Boys Are Harmless
Talking television.
Dec. 3 2010 7:50 AM

Friday Night Lights, Season 5



Huh. I see that the boys played a little dirty, but I feel like I missed out on the blood and the lust and even the violence. Their tricks came in response to South King's, didn't they? If this wasn't Eric's game plan, he seemed down with it once he thought the refs were putting a thumb on the scale, didn't he? Or has all that rank manhood addled my brain? Commenters, help me out.

The mood that stuck with me from this episode is much softer, like the strains of masculinity that wafted over the balcony. The boys were talking about pigs and porn, sure, but as Andy Greenwald says over at Vulture, it all felt quiet and ordinary. I think I loved this episode for almost the opposite reason you did, David: It made me remember how harmless boys mostly are, even when they're doing their football, skin-flick-watching thing.


I want to go back a week to the scene between Jess and Vince in the locker room, which I disparaged. Our commenter Alanna made me think about it in a different way. She writes:

I'm firmly on Jess's side in the locker room controversy. She loves football, though she can't play on the team because she's a woman (and we don't know if she has any real talent). She enjoyed helping Vince with his training over the summer. She said outright a few weeks ago that she really wanted to be involved beyond just cheering or as a rally girl. It makes perfect sense for her to sign on as an equipment manager and backdoor junior assistant coach via Billy Riggins. Yeah, I can understand why Vince is so uncomfortable having her there, but she was totally at home talking trash with the boys.

Hanna, I hope you are right that Tami will now have the perfect words for Julie. If this wretched Derek subplot wins us one of the show's keeper mother-daughter scenes, maybe that will salvage it for me. Meanwhile, I have only one more thing to say about Julie, borrowed from goddesspharo on Twitter. "Matt is 'just this guy in Chicago,' Julie Taylor? What are you doing?"

Emily Bazelon was a Slate senior editor from 2005 to 2014. She is the author of Sticks and Stones.



Don’t Worry, Obama Isn’t Sending U.S. Troops to Fight ISIS

But the next president might. 

The Extraordinary Amicus Brief That Attempts to Explain the Wu-Tang Clan to the Supreme Court Justices

Amazon Is Officially a Gadget Company. Here Are Its Six New Devices.

The Human Need to Find Connections in Everything

It’s the source of creativity and delusions. It can harm us more than it helps us.

How Much Should You Loathe NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell?

Here are the facts.

Altered State

The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender

What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?

Surprise! The Women Hired to Fix the NFL Think the NFL Is Just Great.

You Shouldn’t Spank Anyone but Your Consensual Sex Partner

Sept. 17 2014 5:10 PM The Most Awkward Scenario in Which a Man Can Hold a Door for a Woman
  News & Politics
Altered State
Sept. 17 2014 11:51 PM The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?
Business Insider
Sept. 17 2014 1:36 PM Nate Silver Versus Princeton Professor: Who Has the Right Models?
Sept. 17 2014 6:53 PM LGBTQ Luminaries Honored With MacArthur “Genius” Fellowships
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 17 2014 6:14 PM Today in Gender Gaps: Biking
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 17 2014 9:37 AM Is Slate Too Liberal?  A members-only open thread.
Brow Beat
Sept. 17 2014 8:25 PM A New Song and Music Video From Angel Olsen, Indie’s Next Big Thing
Future Tense
Sept. 17 2014 9:00 PM Amazon Is Now a Gadget Company
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 17 2014 11:48 PM Spanking Is Great for Sex Which is why it’s grotesque for parenting.
Sports Nut
Sept. 17 2014 3:51 PM NFL Jerk Watch: Roger Goodell How much should you loathe the pro football commissioner?