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I have rarely seen a finale as beautiful, thematically fitting, and emotionally powerful as the first season ender of Friday Night Lights
. The Dillon Panthers went all the way to the state championships, and thanks to their undying spirit and the inspirational coaching of Eric Taylor, they walked away with a victory.
Considering that we've seen last minute victories in countless sports movies, it would have been easy for Friday Night Lights to subvert expectations and have the Panthers lose. I'm thankful they didn't. The characters, as well as the audience, deserved a triumph after all the emotional turmoil throughout the season. We lived with those characters, we cheered them on, and we deserved to see them celebrate.
Though the big game was a win, the emotional lives of the characters weren't so easily wrapped up. Tami discovered she was pregnant, Eric wrestled with whether to take a job in another city, and we were all left not knowing how the greatest couple on television would make things work. The ending left us with questions, but it also left us feeling that, somehow, everything would work out for the best. After all, as the show has often reminded us, with clear eyes and full hearts, you can't lose.
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(Image courtesy of NBC)