AFC Richmond suffered a devastating (and humiliating) loss to Man City on Ted Lasso last week, complete with Jamie Tartt being subjected to his awful father confronting him in the locker room. Things got heavy as we learned some devastating details about Ted, Sharon got into a bike accident, and Rebecca finally met up with her Bantr date … Sam.
This week, we hoped for some news on all of “Man City”‘s bomb drops, but instead, we went on a different journey — an after-hours journey with Coach Beard.
It’s all about Beard
After the match, Beard took off on his own to collect his thoughts, refusing the ride back to the Richmond facilities with the team and opting to take the train himself. When he arrives home, he heads straight to the Crown and Anchor pub, ready to down his sorrows with a beer or two … or 12?
While there, he meets up with our three favorite Richmond superfans, Baz, Jeremy, and Paul, and the four set out to have a night they won’t forget. From an elaborate scheme to get into an exclusive club, to being chased down by a very scary gentleman and then meeting up with Tartt senior in the alleyway, Beard had an eventful night. While his actions may have seemed a little erratic and irresponsible, what was driving this mad little evening adventure?
First, the loss. Clearly, Beard is suffering from some imposter syndrome. Throughout the episode we hear commentary from the pundits in Beard’s head (including famous French soccer star Thierry Henry!) saying he’s not a good enough coach, he’s not a good enough man, and this loss is his fault. Of course, that’s not entirely true, losing is a team effort just as much as winning is. But seeing this side of the usually stoic Beard shed a new light on this under-explored character.
Secondly, Jane is still plaguing Beard’s mind. I found the trajectory of this episode, and the Beard/Jane relationship, interesting and a bit disappointing. This entire season thus far has painted Jane in a … more toxic than healthy light, so I expected Beard to finally come to his senses a bit and see that Jane may not be his best match. But it was the opposite. Despite all of Jane’s odd, controlling behaviors (still evident in this episode: over 50 missed calls and 70 texts?), Beard still thinks she walks on water.
After the tackling of hesitancy to open up and seek help from Ted, to Jamie confronting his father, and Roy pushing aside his loathing of Jamie to understand what made him who he was, I did anticipate seeing the Beard/Jane situation pan out differently. The beginning of the episode had him on track to see that Jane just isn’t what he needs, but by the end he’s reunited with her in a church club and is happy as a clam. For now.
Hopefully, in these last three episodes of the season, Beard sees his worth as a coach and as a man and decides to move on from the things not helping him accept himself as those things he clearly is. Except he can’t leave the Greyhounds, that’s not allowed.
It was great to see our three favorite Richmond fans out on the town, however, as well as Jamie Tartt’s father absolutely getting what he deserved in that alleyway.
“Beard is like the mailman, you know? He always delivers, and he looks great in shorts.”