I haven’t written about FNL in a while (I think since episode three) because of odd scheduling and general end-of-the-semester busyness and also because I’ve been a little frustrated with things. It’s not that season five has been bad, I just didn’t feel like the stories were coming together as well as they usually do. Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton and Michael B. Jordan have been fantastic all season, but I wasn’t really feeling like this season had the same kind of direction that the past ones had.
Then last week’s episode happened. "Swerve" is most certainly the best episode of season five and one that suggests all the disjointed threads were purposefully written as such, because when so many of them come together in that episode, it’s a beautiful thing.
Of course, of all the complaints I had with episodes 1-5, most of them had to do with Julie Taylor. Julie has definitely been the most frustrating character throughout the series’ run. Without Matt, she usually becomes less interesting and more childish, which is unfortunate for a character that was initially based in this wise-beyond-her-years aura. But when Julie has to go out in the real world, away from Matt and away from her parents, she usually makes really, really stupid choices. On one hand, it’s interesting to watch a person who thinks their so mature and wise get smacked around by the world. On the other hand, it’s just frustrating because we’ve already been down this road with Julie, multiple times: The Swede, the high school English teacher, last year when she pouted on the college visits. Basically, Julie Taylor likes to pretend she’s smart and wise and mature against the backdrop of Dillon, Texas, but the rest of the world doesn’t really care about all that. They can see through it.
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