Ted Lasso Season 3 Episode 4, “Big Week,” feels more like a sports drama with realistic stakes. This is an example of the series remembering that while it often features character-driven stories, it can still focus on the drama that’s built into all sports. Unfortunately, while there are hints of where the characters are headed, the series continues to struggle when setting the Greyhound family up for satisfying conclusions.
Rebecca (Hannah Waddingham) is clearly still working through some things, and that’s more than okay. While on the surface, it may seem that she is essentially throwing a tantrum, there is something deeper happening here. She has evidently been so traumatized by Rupert (Anthony Head) and sees a path to healing that involves beating his team. Even in the midst of this, it’s a credit to her character that she can see Rupert clearly for the scumbag he is to everyone around him, including his current wife and their daughter.
It could be interesting to see where this story goes. One wonders if Rebecca will ever come to see another path to victory that is beyond the football scoreboard. While she is no longer obsessed with destroying Rupert as she once was, she still has something to prove. Will she ever be able to move on from her relationship with Rupert? Or will that hurt always remain? So far, the final season has struggled to give Rebecca the character development she deserves. Hopefully, this story is the beginning of Rebecca finding her happy ending.
Unfortunately, Ted’s (Jason Sudeikis) optimism and Zava’s star power are not enough to propel the Greyhounds to victory. The fact that they’re still struggling even after acquiring Zava is telling. This shows that there is still more fundamental work that the team needs to do. After two years of Ted’s motivation and encouragement, there is still something missing. This makes sense since this character was never going to be a silver bullet solution.
Ted Lasso Season 3 Episode 4, “Big Week,” also features Nate (Nick Mohammed) having to come face to face with his former team and former mentor. This has been coming since Nate left the Greyhounds in a massive huff. The little moments, like Nate trying to hide in the corner of the elevator, show that this man still has a lot of remorse for how he left his former team. Ted being the epitome of grace is exactly what we’d expect from him. However, there’s also a lot of hurt on his part that he’s not working through. If Ted hopes to reconcile with Nate at some point, he will need to do some internal work and acknowledge his own emotions that came from the loss of his mentee.
The Nate and Ted storyline is all-too-real to anyone who’s been left out in the cold by a friend. This episode is viscerally authentic when it comes to capturing the awkwardness of estranged former friends reconnecting. However, this episode shifts gears just a little too much and tries to make Nate way more sympathetic than he needs to be right now. It’s concerning, considering the halfway point of this final season is just around the corner. The last thing Nate as a character needs is a rushed storyline to put him on the path to redemption before he’s earned it.
Ted Lasso is still setting up potential storylines for characters. The amount of time being spent on set-up is concerning, though. At this point, if this is to be the final season, there needs to be some more movement to get all these characters to where they’re supposed to be. The predictability of having the Greyhounds lose to West Ham to make the ultimate victory that much sweeter when it happens isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, the show needs to get in gear, and quickly.
Ted Lasso streams Wednesdays on Apple TV+.