Idol Chatter

fridaynightlightscastpic.jpgThough it is extremely frustrating that the “Friday Night Lights” season finale has already aired this week on DirecTV, for the rest of us, the Dillon Panthers finally return to play football tomorrow night on NBC after too long of a hiatus. To defray the production costs, NBC made a deal with the satellite dish company requiring season three of the critically acclaimed show premiered over on DirecTV first last fall. Now everyone–not just those with DirecTV– can catch up with Coach Taylor and the boys. I have long been the show’s chief supporter here at Idol Chatter, and I have to say that If the previews are any indication, the Panthers are returning to winning form after several fumbles last year.
It appears “FNL” will not go into ridiculous storylines such as last year’s Landry/Tyra murder fiasco, and the show is wisely ridding itself of characters who no longer really serve the show’s needs–a.k.a. Jason. Riggins and Lila are still hot for each other, but other, more important, conflicts also resurface.
Coach Taylor is facing renewed skepticism from townsfolk that he can create a championship team ( not to mention a new challenge to his marriage), and QB Matt Saracen is still dealing with trying to be regular guy while taking care of his grandmother. These have always been the kind of moments that have made “Lights” shine as an intelligent teen drama that accurately reflects the loves and losses of a generation that has had to grow up too hard, too fast and with little parental influence.

There’s no question that in its third season, this series still has game–and heart -to spare, but the bigger question these days is whether the core audience that has fervently stood behind the show will show up this season’s kickoff or whether illegal downloads of the series from previous airings as well as other media spoilers will ruin the audience’s interest and sideline the show for good.
Friday Night Lights at

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