Tuned In

TV Weekend: Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Etc.

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NBC Photo: Bill Records

In the current TIME, I make a brief plea for readers to check out Friday Night Lights, which returns tonight. There’s been a lot of discussion among fans who’ve watched the episode (which streamed online earlier) about a pivotal scene near the end, which Alan Sepinwall at the Newark Star-Ledger has taken to calling The Bad Thing. I don’t want to come close to spoiling it, but if you don’t mind spoilage, read the chatter here.

Essentially, there’s a fairly drastic plot turn that threatens to take FNL in an un-FNL-like direction. I’ve seen the subsequent two episodes, and they’ve eased my concerns a little more than they did Sepinwall’s–while the event is out-there by FNL standards, I think the show handles the fallout with characteristic realism. I agree with him that The Bad Thing is not a Good Thing, but FNL as a whole still is–a Good Thing, that is, a moving, big-hearted celebration of people getting by. So turn out for your team and we can discuss further afterward.