The important question, as Abraham Piper points out , is what were going to watch now that Lost has left our lives for good.
I liked Lost . A lot. I have to say that and repeat it so the Losties dont kill me for what comes next: it wasnt the best show on television the past three weeks. That position belongs to Friday Night Lights , the beautifully filmed drama that people think is about football. But its not. Really .
Friday Night Lightss timing is fortuitous: while Lost is done, it rebooted with several new characters and an intriguing new central storyline. I wont recap it here, but I will make a brief case why its worth your attention:
1) The show oozesand there is no other word for it authenticity. More than any other network show Ive ever seen, FNL makes me feel as though I was really in the middle of the world Ive been dropped into, observing the events as they unfold. And no wonder. They dont film it like most shows, with three cameras and scripted movements. Instead, the actors are given instructions about the plot points and allowed to improvise with the cameras following them, which creates a beautiful effect. Dont believe me? Check out the teaser:
2) The Taylors . The central characters are hardly perfect, but they wear and bear their imperfections with a gracious faithfulness unknown in TV-land. They have managed to find that difficult equilibrium of respect, candor, and love, all while dealing with the practical realities of raising children and seeking excellence in their work.
3) The plot. There are no islands, no vampires, andbest of allno time travel. Theres only that guy from down the street. You know, the guy who cares a bit too much about his football because he doesnt have any other life. And the guy who thinks football is a waste of time because he wants his son to get an education. And the capable-but-underachieving girl who only wants to get away from her broken life, but has no way of doing it. And the talented kid whose mom is too drugged out to raise him. And the kid who doesnt much like white people.
You know: the stuff of real life. The best part of Friday Night Lights is that it manages to take life in a small Texas town (which is not so different from the small Washington town I grew up in) and draw us in to the powerful narratives and dynamics that are always present, but that we might miss in our own lives.
There is more to be said but for now check out the first three episodes , and let me know what you think.