Ted Lasso

This series truly lives up to the title feel good show. It has an indomitable positivity and a true love for its characters. It made me laugh out loud every episode and brought me close to tears at times.

The series follows Ted Lasso a charmingly goofy and relentlessly positive American football coach who is hired to coach a soccer team in England despite the fact that he knows nothing about soccer. Ted Lasso is played by Jason Sudeikis of SNL fame. He is silly as when he asks his friend to goof off with him if they dream about each other. He is endearingly positive as when he marches into a new country and a new sport with the biggest smile on his face. He’s also heartbreaking in moments of personal challenge. He has a phone call home in the first episode that blew me away. He carries the show, but he’s not alone.

The woman who hires Ted is Rebecca Walton played by the very imposing, very lovely, and very tall Hannah Waddingham. She won the soccer team in a divorce settlement with her wealthy philandering her of an ex husband. He really is awful. She knows that the soccer team was the only thing he ever really loved. She decides to destroy it by hiring Ted. If you think you know who this character is or where the story is going to take her you’ll be surprised. She isn’t shrewish or evil. She is a wounded person who is working through her pain in an unhealthy way. She is full of layers and depth that are so much fun to explore as the show goes on.

Joining Ted is his assistant coach and friend Coach Beard. He’s mostly silent, but has some of the funniest lines in the show. His friendship with Ted is the kind everyone should have.

The star player on the team is Jamie Tartt. He’s an arrogant young hotshot and a real jerk, but as the season goes on he too has his layers peeled back to reveal a real person underneath.

Jamie’s girlfriend is Keeley Jones played with effervescent energy by Juno Temple. She is a delight. She is an earthy working class girl who describes herself as being famous for being almost famous.

Then there’s Nate. He has such low self esteem and feels so insignificant that he is shocked to discover that Ted remembers his name. He blooms and grows over the season in a delightful way.

I fell in love with this series. It is a real breath of positive fresh air. It has elements of sports movies, but doesn’t go all out with sports cliches. It is a very funny comedy, but really gives us the serious moments to ground it. It has so much heart and pathos, but doesn’t drown in it. The series is really about making friends and building relationships, and that feels like a great antidote to the world in which we live.

I don’t usually review series because the mechanics of TV and movie story telling are so different, but this one feels like a united piece. A real story told over the course of ten episodes. It’s on Apple TV plus. Which is too bad because while it is a pretty solid streaming service no one has it. If you can get a free week promotion get it and watch this show. Even if you have to pay for a subscription it’s worth the $6.

Check it out. It’s absolutely my cup of tea. A

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