The twelfth and final episode of season two of “Ted Lasso” has arrived, bringing with it a whole slew of twists and turns for audiences to enjoy. The episode sees Coach Ted Lasso (Jason Sudeikis) facing the fallout of Trent Crimm’s (James Lance) article that, with an anonymous tip from assistant coach Nate (Nick Mohammed), revealed Coach Lasso’s mental health struggles to the world. At the same time, Ted and the rest of his AFC Richmond team prepare for the final match of the season, which comes with an opportunity to be promoted back to the Premier League.
This episode, as well as the whole second season, delivers to viewers more of what they enjoyed from the first season, but never quite hits the name highs as the first go around. It’s hard not to compare the seasons as each one’s final episode is remarkably similar in its structure, with challenging personal drama combined with one final match that determines the outcome of the season. This time, however, the personal drama takes the lead in the episode. Nate’s displeasure as an assistant boils over. Keeley (Juno Temple) gets a new job opportunity that will take her away from the team and adds even more stress to the already stressful relationship between Roy (Brett Goldstein) and herself. Star player Sam (Toheeb Jimoh) has to decide between staying with Richmond and returning to Africa to play there. These conflicts are all intense and generally well-executed, but are a different main focus than before.
This is the main difference between season two and season one. The first season was a comedy that often peppered in some serious moments. The second season feels much more like a drama with the occasional joke. This isn’t necessarily bad. The drama in the second season is done well most of the time. However, it makes the show feel different now than it was before. It’s a bit like “Ted Lasso”is still using the same recipe of combining comedy and drama that made the first season such a hit, but the ingredients are used in different proportions, resulting in a similar, but different flavor.
The other big difference is the focus of the show. All of the previously mentioned conflicts have one thing in common: they don’t involve Ted. Sure, he is an influence to all of those characters, but those storylines are not about him. Ted has taken a backseat in his own show. This season he mainly faces struggles with mental health as he opens up to new therapist Dr. Fieldstone (Sarah Niles). This storyline was just one of several main plots this season as compared to season one when Ted was the main character and everyone else was a minor character in that story. The show is pulling away from the original premise of “an American coach in England” to be much more broad in its focus. As the show continues, it will be interesting to see how much more Ted’s role in the show will change over time.
Of course, the finale gave viewers plenty to chew on for the future. Roy and Keeley are going to be spending some time apart as they leave the episode in a bit of a rocky place. Fingers crossed they can stick together next season. Trent Crimm is now independent as he finds himself quitting reporting after his latest story broke. He and Ted share a nice talk at the end of the episode and, with Nate, Keeley and Dr. Fieldstone all gone, there could be room for Trent to join up with Richmond. The biggest tease for next season is the final scene which shows Nate at the helm of rival West Ham, who are now owned by Rebecca’s ex-husband Rupert. It’s a safe bet that AFC Richmond will face a pivotal test against Nate and West Ham next season.
The second season of “Ted Lasso” took a different approach compared to its first season. It brought out the drama over the comedy and became much more of an ensemble show. These changes make the series feel different, but don’t stop it from being worth watching. All of the characters in “Ted Lasso” are amazing, making it enjoyable to see more of them and to face the drama with them. The comedy is still there, making a nice, new combination of tone. Itjust comes at these things in a different way. “Ted Lasso” remains one of the top series right now and season three can’t come soon enough.
All episodes of “Ted Lasso ” are now streaming on Apple TV+.
By Ben Lindner