“Football is life” is a phrase often used by Dani Rojas from the Emmy-winning sports-comedy series, Ted Lasso. This line already gives us an insight into what kind of a show this will be, but also not really. The show, which is co-created by Jason Sudeikis and also sees him as the titular character, is loosely based on the TV commercial made by NBC for their coverage of the Premier League back in 2013.
Eight years later now since the first commercial aired, the series which airs on Apple TV+ has won 7 Emmys for its first season. And we can boldly say that it is the streaming platform’s most significant hit show ever made.
Ted Lasso Season 2: A little recap of the freshman season.
The show, as expected, revolves around Ted Lasso—a middle-aged man with a heart of gold from Texas. The small-time American football coach is hired by a scorned divorcee Rebecca Welton (Hannah Waddingham) on the other side of the Atlantic to manage a football team (the European kind), which plays in the English Premier League, AFC Richmond.
She does this in hopes that he will steer the team—her cheating ex-husband’s favorite possession—towards failure.
This sets out the plot for the first season of the show as we see how this underdog coach from Kansas handles testy players with big egos, displeased fans who have a rather provoking nickname for him, and a damaged marriage back home, all while having the optimism of a labrador retriever and the personality of a walking dad-joke with a mustache.
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The first season introduces us to most of the core characters in the show and gives us a base interpretation of their personalities and their relationships. By the end of the first season, we see the resolution between the supposed antagonist—Rebecca and Ted; and we also start to dive deeper into the more tragic aspects of the coach’s personal life and how he deals with anxiety attacks as a result of it.
Ted Lasso Season 2: How the show manages to remain as promising and stellar as the first one.
Ted Lasso Season 2 premiered in July this year and started out as promising as the first one. Season 2 went deeper into the lives of its supporting cast as we got to learn more about the characters that we fell in love with within the first season.
There is more of a certain depth presented to us in regards to these characters this season. Be it in the form of exploring more of the adorable friendship between Rebbeca and Keely (Juno Temple) or the struggles of the former Richmond captain, Roy Kent (Brett Goldstein), as he faces and tries to navigate a life of retirement.
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We also learn more about Jamie’s abusive father, and we get to go on an exhilarating night out with our beloved Coach Beard (Brendan Hunt) on the streets of Richmond. Most of all, we dive more in-depth into the pasts of both Ted Lasso and his boss Rebecca.
This season, like the one before it, continues its commitment to addressing the characters’ mental health. Truly, one of a kind for a sports-related series.
This season’s cast of characters also includes a very perceptive and intellectual psychologist, Dr. Sharon Fieldstone (played by Sarah Niles), further cementing the direction the show wanted to go to in regards to mental health and addresses some of our characters’ deep-seated issues one by one.
The bike-riding Doctor, as Ted, refers to her as Doc was brought in by the team to help and support the players of AFC Richmond after a regrettable event that happened in the first episode. The patient-doctor relationship built up between Doc Sharon and Coach Lasso is genuinely a lovely one to behold and so impactful to watch as it unravels.
The emotional highs and lows that Ted goes through this season not only make us sympathize with him more but also make him more likable than he already is. The way mental health is talked about and dealt with without bias and stigma in this show is commendable.
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Speaking of breaking stigma, another issue this comedy series deals with so flawlessly is breaking the stereotype of “toxic masculinity”, we see this through the lens of various different characters.
From Roy’s genuinely adorable relationship with his niece to Jamie (Phil Dunster) learning from his mistakes and reforming in the second season. We also see Ted himself learning how to deal with his emotions after he struggles to process the trauma and tragic events from his past.
The second season itself is more free-floating than the first one. Be it in terms of writing or in terms of the plot as a whole. It is a bold step the creators have taken to explore more of the show’s marvelous supporting characters’ perspectives, which sets the plot’s tone this season more than the protagonist Ted Lasso himself.
This does not mean Ted is in any way overshadowed as he still continues to remain front and center as the show’s driving force.
Another unusual thing to note about this season is the outright lack of an antagonist, as most character conflicts are resolved in the first season itself. The story is developed in such a way that by the end of the last episode, we are introduced to this new friend-turned foe that makes us really look forward to the new season.
Even though the new season is slightly lacking and could be anti-climactic compared to the first one, it sets in motion a series of events that makes us anticipate what the writers are up to next.
All in all, the show Ted Lasso continues to feel like a warm hug or a cozy, comforting blanket that we’d like to wrap ourselves around on a cold winter day. With an incredibly talented cast and a protagonist who is the male version of Mary Poppins, it can be said with absolute certainty that Ted Lasso is one of the most binge-worthy shows out there.
This review is written by Ramya S. Prakash, and edited by Dharmesh Sahu.
Ramya is a sleep-deprived engineering student who likes to consider herself a multi-fandom mess. Staying up late and binging on TV shows and Anime or reading books is her reverie from reality. She also writes sometimes.
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