As much as I love "Friday Night Lights," I admit the promos for this episode had me worried. Maybe it had something to do with Minka Kelly totally overacting Lyla's big line, "You're all that I have in the whole" (pause, gasp, sob) "world!" Luckily, the rest of the episode doesn't plunge to that level of melodrama. But there is a lot going on, as the whole school turns on Lyla for sleeping with Riggins, Jason moves home from the rehab facility, and Smash randomly takes a shine to his preacher's daughter. Oh, and Julie and Matt kiss, a development Coach Taylor simply cannot handle.
Virtually all of this week's action happens off the football field, and it starts at Lyla's locker, which has been tagged with "slut" and other such graffiti. Apparently Dillon High School gets nasty when you sleep with your paralyzed boyfriend's best friend.
Cut to the cuteness that is Matt and Julie. Julie tells Matt he'll have to stand up to her dad if he wants to keep dating her, and Matt says that's not going to happen - it's bad enough to deal with your girlfriend's father, but when he's also your football coach and you're the quarterback? Yikes. Matt says he's sorry for boldly kissing Julie last week, and Julie accepts the apology by planting one on Matt's lips right there at her locker.
Meanwhile, Jason wheels into his house on the ramp his dad built, and he glances over the football trophies on his dresser before spotting a picture of him and Lyla. Disgusted, he turns it over and slams it in a drawer. There's more to come with Jason and Lyla, so
Julie informs her parents she's going to the movies with Matt on Saturday. Tami and Coach Taylor tell her she's got another thing coming, because everyone's going to the big cheerleading competition. "Uh, pass," Julie says. "Cheerleading is more pointless than football." "That's a sexist - a sexist remark you just made," Coach stutters. Hee.
Outside the school, Smash approaches a new girl, who he realizes is Waverly, his pastor's daughter. Apparently, she has been away all this time on a mission trip to Africa. More stuff happens with them, but I'll just wrap it up here: Waverly and her dad come to Smash's house for dinner, his mom asks Smash how he's doing in SAT class the church donated money for, and Smash continues to lie and say it's great, which I suppose makes sense given that the alternative is to admit he's using the money for steroids.
Meanwhile, Jason spots Lyla sitting in her car outside his house and wheels over long enough to say "I've got nothing to say to you."
Later, Lyla's eating lunch in the cafeteria when Riggins shows up and says he doesn't care that everyone thinks she's the school slut, and Lyla responds: "It's different for girls. You can sleep around all you want and people think you're cool."
Jason talks to a lawyer his parents have hired, who asks him if Coach Taylor ever gave Jason any tackling practice before he made the hit that paralyzed him. "Are you trying to say this is Coach Taylor's fault?" Jason asks. He says he'll never blame Coach ...
... who at that moment is pacing back and forth in his bedroom because Matt and Julie are watching TV together.
Coach: What do you think they're doing?
Tami: Probably having sex.
Coach: That's not funny.
He goes into the living room and finds Matt and Julie sharing a blanket. The horror! He flips out, and Matt says he should go. "They had a blanket!" Coach tells Tami. "You're an idiot," Tami replies.
Lyla goes online and discovers the Official Lyla Garrity Slam Page, a crude little affair complete with a picture of Lyla wearing a mustache. She's notably absent from the next day's pep rally, which is a shame, because it features football players in drag doing all the silly things teenage boys do when they're wearing skirts. Tami finds Lyla reading another nasty note and pulls her into the counseling office, where Lyla says she's quitting cheerleading.
Matt picks Julie up for school, and Coach Taylor decides it's time to talk to that boy. So Taylor finds Matt later and gives him a stack of football tapes to watch over the weekend, playing dumb about his plans with Julie. A TV announcer's voice-over informs us that the Panthers have won their game, and that's pretty much all the football content for the episode.
Jason sees Lyla standing outside his window and wheels outside to talk to her. "It was one mistake," she protests. Jason points out it's actually more like three: one for the cheating, two for the lying, three for sleeping with his best friend. Lyla says she was the one who was there for Jason after his accident, and Jason says she doesn't get any credit for sticking by him. Lyla gasp-sobs through the "all I have in the whole world" line, and Jason takes her hand and presses it to his mouth — and then drops it. "I just can't," he says.
The next morning, Riggins shows up at Lyla's house. He tells her she should go to the cheerleading competition. "I don't want you to give up because of what we had," he says. Lyla shows up in uniform and pushes through to the front of her group, half of whom look happy to see her, half of whom just look stunned. When it's their turn to compete, she leads them out onto the floor, then looks up and catches a glimpse of Jason in the crowd. And we're left to ponder that until the show comes back on Wednesdays in January.