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Friday Night Lights Rundown: Episode 11, "Jumping the Gun"

Friday Night Lights Rundown: Episode 11, "Jumping the Gun"

Friday Night Lights just can't seem to have its characters stop breaking the law this season, can it? Granted, the criminal twist in "Jumping the Gun" seemed more believable than a lot of the Landry/Tyra murder plot, but still, I'm a little surprised. That plot was just a minor part of Friday's packed episode, though, which featured Smash having to make a decision about a college and Coaches Taylor and Dickes facing off in a major game. To read my thoughts and share your own, just


I'm beginning to think that Tim Riggins is one of the most frustrating (but wonderful) characters ever written for TV. It would have been easy for him to rat Julie out and try to keep his sweet living situation at the Taylors'; instead, he kept her drunken evening his secret and went about trying to go home — where, naturally, Billy has left everything in shambles. For all his drinking and womanizing, Tim is the most responsible member of the Riggins family, and he seems to genuinely want to be good. So why, oh why, would he steal a pile of money from the biggest drug dealer in Dillon? Taking the cash does fit with what we know about Riggins; well-intentioned as he may be, he's also lazy. But what good does an easy mortgage payment do when you're too dead to enjoy it?

Smash's recruiting plot line has delivered some of this season's finest moments — Cabo in my pants, anyone? — but it hasn't always rung completely true. I was glad to see Noelle reappear in this episode as Smash's pseudo-adviser, and Mama Smash's wary reaction to Noelle's supposed expertise was perfectly played. But why are we just now learning that it's been Smash's dream to play for TMU?

Meanwhile, as enjoyable as it was to have Tami's sister around for a while, I'm glad Shelly's moving on. This starts an interesting new chapter for Tami: What will she do with baby Grace now that her built-in babysitter is gone? I would say that all the upcoming working-mom drama would be more fodder for Connie Britton's packed Emmy reel, if the Emmys would ever learn that FNL exists.

Some other thoughts:

  • Subtlety has always been a hallmark of FNL, so I'm annoyed at how the Coach Dickes situation ended. I loved him continuing to be a dick(es) by calling his players "girls" and generally being the opposite of Coach Taylor in every way. I even believe he was capable of tackling an opposing player mid-game just to show his own team how it's done. But for the explanation to be that his wife is dying and he doesn't "have a game plan for that?" Groan.
  • Julie Taylor has been a brat for much of this season, but I'm glad she grew up enough to tell Coach what Riggins was really doing hovering over her bed. Coach's"Damn, Julie," and his little heart-to-heart before Tami got home, were classic.
  • Also great: Tim offering Jackie his dad's address so she could complete "the Riggins trifecta." I wouldn't have guessed Tim knew the word "trifecta," but hey.
  • Nice plug for The Office on Coach's deleted game tape.

Your thoughts? Are Tim and Billy so dead? Will Smash stand by his verbal commitment? And does anyone remember when this show had a character named Jason Street?


Join The Conversation
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
i thought the money taking plot was perfect. here's tim, no good choices available and the money is THERE. he's looking at it from "either i'm homeless almost immediately OR i take this money and maybe i'm screwed a little later" because coach had just kicked him out and the house is almost in forclosure. if coach had JUST talked to him a little earlier i don't think he'd have taken the money. but hed had nothing to lose and that's a dangerous place for his character. i also thought about his finger prints being on the gun later, yikes! as for smash always wanting to go to TMU, i lived in texas for awhile and i think every kid in that state wants to play college football for the university nearest to them. it's another world, lol. i also thought the story line of coach dickes was well done. family drama does carry over into your job and people's spouses do get sick and die. in the last few years we've had 4 friends or parents of our girls classmates lose the wife (humm, why always the wife) to cancer or other illness. the one thing that didn't really ring true to me was how the baby suddenly bacame the most peaceful cooperative baby ever. that baby did nothing but cry and now she's a dream, lol. love the show, hope it lasts for a long time :)
Linda-McP Linda-McP 9 years
Great recap, Buzz. Like others, I'm worried about Tim and how this will all end for him. He really is a good kid who can't seem to break away from his past no matter how hard he tries. Loved when Coach Taylor told him that he did an honorable thing and when Julie finally did the honorable thing too. As you said, Buzz, the scene with Coach and Julie was classic (as was his "Damn, Julie"). The father-daughter scenes always are my favorites. Hope that Smash soon dumps the girlfriend who is beginning to annoy me--as well as Mama Smash and Coach Taylor. Looking forward to seeing how Tami handles the daycare situation now that Shelly's moving on.
Entertainment Entertainment 9 years
MissKate — I can't remember how Shelly ended up living with the Taylors'. I know they were helping her out while she studied for her real estate license, but she was doing a ton of work taking care of Gracie, too. Maybe they just saw it as a win-win? And yeah, this episode had no Tyra or Landry — the first of the season without them, I think!
fleurfairy fleurfairy 9 years
mannylove, I couldn't see who it was either, but if I had to guess I'd say the kid from juvie??
mannylove mannylove 9 years
Who was Lyla kissing in the preview for next week's show when Tim walks in with flowers?
MissKate919 MissKate919 9 years
fleurfairy, can you have Taylor call me when you're done!!! LOVE HIM! Also love his character. I'm sure viewers of all ages can relate to Riggin's constant struggle with right and wrong. I love how he handled the Julie situation, and was relieved when Julie finally came clean. Loved when Coach told him he did the honorable thing "from a father's point of view." Especially b/c a father figure is really what Riggins is thirsty for. But of course, now he got himself into another sticky situation! Never a dull moment. Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Tami ask her sister to move in and help with the baby? Why are they acting like having her there was a favor for her? I agree! Smash's GF is annoying. Also, what ever happened to Waverly? I know she stopped taking her meds, but did they ever say if she moved away or what? Back to Riggins being completely hot, loved when Shelley and Julie were watching him to sit-ups and Tami got all annoyed! LMAO
fleurfairy fleurfairy 9 years
Oh god, I found my heart racing when Riggins and his brother were in the ferret guy's house. I was screaming "Just take the money and get out of there!! Before he comes home!!!" I love Riggins' brother. He's a very relatable guy. And could Tim be any hotter??? Wow, Taylor Kitsch call me. I love how he didn't rat out Julie. One great part was the scene with Noelle, Smash, and Coach. Coach looked like he want to strangle Noelle. Hilarious. Can't wait o see next week with Tim and Lyla! They belong together.
nomerz nomerz 9 years
I understand that Billy and Tim were desperate, but geez, he just got back under Coach's good graces, and it seems like despite that plot, he's got things mostly on track. Stealing the money will definitely come back to bite them... I also thought the reveal for Coach Dickens bad behavior was lame. Cheeeeeeesy.
Liss1 Liss1 9 years
The money part made me nervous also, but my main concern for that scene was he touched the gun and didn't wipe his prints off, who knows what that gun has been used for but i have an over active imagination. I was glad Julie finally stepped up and confessed to her dad. I was hoping she would. That wouldn't have been fair to Tim who was just trying to help her out. Also what did Coach tell Tami about kicking Tim out? they didn't mention it and also she didn't seem to know what happened. I got misty eyed when Smash brought his mom some flowers at the end and apologized. His GF needs to go she seems like trouble. Were Tyra and Landry even in this episode? I can't remember but i don't think so. I loved the scene when the other coach tackled Riggins. I didn't like the explanation of the dying wife. He should of been with her instead of in another town coaching football. Where the heck is Street? they showed him a few episodes ago with the pee girl and no mention of him since.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 9 years
The money-stealing plot line has me so nervous. Mostly because Tim is one of my favorite characters on the show outside of Landry. I can just see it developing badly for him and Billy. I was literally pleading with my TV for him to just put the money back and get out of the house.
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