Oh, what a beautiful episode. If last week's felt a bit schizophrenic, the story lines not quite integrated, this episode is an aesthetic whole, from start to finish.
Julie and Matt are still lying down together, like in Bible times, which is the best way to describe it, because Matt and Julie sleeping together is seriously the most wholesome thing I have ever seen. They love each other, and you can tell that they love each other. One person who maybe can't see immediately that they love each other, though, is Coach, who walks in on them in bed together one afternoon. Coach goes in lockdown, letting Tami have the conversation with her daughter. And it is a doozy of a conversation; I have mentally bookmarked this conversation for if I ever have a child, under "How to Talk to Your Child About Sex." Coach's conversation with Matt, however, I have just bookmarked under "Cringe."
If the Taylors are coming to terms with their daughter growing into adulthood, Lyla Garrity is coming to terms with the fact that becoming an adult doesn't mean you stop doing stupid shit. Buddy Garrity gets arrested for wailing on a guy at the strip club. They were having a "business meeting" in which the injured party told Buddy that he lost the $70,000 Buddy had given him to invest in a strip mall development. Ooof. What's worse is that the money Buddy tried to invest was Lyla's college money. Lyla moves out of the condo, into The Playgirl Ranch, livid with her father and unwilling to forgive him just yet.
Tyra, back from her fleabag lifestyle in Dallas, needs to cram for her S.A.Ts. So, she taps Landry for the job of tutor. Landry complies readily, until he realizes that he's totally The Giving Tree, and Tyra just keeps taking and taking until he's a stump of a man. He tells Tyra that she's selfish, and to prove him wrong, Tyra goes and gets his band a gig at a local bar. Seeing Landry bloom on stage with a guitar, however, Tyra seems to start getting some ideas about watering his roots.
A sweet little slut named Madison is after J.D. (man, is that thing she does with the glass of milk KINKY!). J.D. is into it, until his father tells him to drop the girl and focus on the playoffs. He does, for about ten minutes, until Tim Riggins tells him that a) getting laid is the BEST before a game and b) none of the guys on the team are going to respect him enough to play for him unless he's banging this girl. Dude, boys are so weird.
Julie and Tyra are in the school parking lot. Tyra is worried that she really messed things up for herself by skipping school for so long to go on the rodeo circuit with Clammy Cash. She's behind in everything, and missed the S.A.Ts. Julie tells her that it's simple. Tyra just needs to bribe her teachers with cupcakes to let her make up the tests she missed, and then there's another S.A.T on Saturday that Matt is taking. Tyra continues to get in her own way: "Yeah, well, the problem is: I suck at tests." Julie, her hair seriously glinting in the late afternoon sun, has a heart of steel, the calculating genius of a flinty football coach: why doesn't Tyra ask Landry to help her study? It isn't like Landry has anything better to do. Oof. Girls. They can be so mean.
A clown car full of football players. They don't know where to go, Landry's jammed in the back seat, J.D. up front. J.D. says that he's out of there, the kid at the wheel (the African American kid we saw making fun of J.D. for being on daddy's leash a few episodes back) tells him he isn't going anywhere. Out of nowhere, a creature of the female persuasion arrives to set these dolts straight: she leans in the window and tells them that Madison's parents are out of town, and she's having some people over. J.D. transitions for us eagerly: "Who's Madison?"
Yes, who is this Madison? We find out right now, cutting over to a red head in a short skirt and boots swanning through her illicit after-school party. She makes eye contact with J.D. across the way; he dorkily makes his way over to the kitchen. She offers him an Appletini, and J.D. mouth breathes, "No, uh, uh, I don't drink." She fixes him for a second and then cocks her head the way only popular girls know how to cock their heads, "You don't? How 'bout a glass of milk?" She heads over to the refrigerator, and the first time I watched I was really worried that she was going to do something really mean here with the milk, but what she does is even more jaw-dropping. J.D. says he doesn't want any milk but Madison tells him this will be, like, his thing. He's a "young, wholesome, milk-drinking quarterback." She pours a glass full of milk and hands it to J.D. He takes a gulp, ending up with a milk moustache, of course, because this kid has the moves of a five year old. She leans in and sexily wipes the milk from his upper lip. J.D. throws it back again. That is the DIRTIEST milk drinking scene I have ever seen!
Somebody took a class in transitions this week, because we cut from J.D. chugging milk-- that symbol of childhood and innocence perverted -- to Buddy tossing back a glass of whiskey at The Landing Strip. One sexy, hormonal swig of milk, that first step from being a baby to being a man sometimes finds you... here. Buddy's there with another guy who looks about as clammy as Cash, which is not a good sign. Also: he keeps asking if Buddy's okay, and whether or not he wants some chicken fingers with "that spicy ranch sauce you like so much." Oh, dear. The strip-club buffet. Certainly one of the seven signs of the apocalypse, no? Buddy asks the guy to just cut to the chase and tell him why he brought him there. The guy obliges: turns out, Buddy had given him some money a while back to invest in a strip mall. The project went belly-up. Buddy is speechless for a minute, while the other guy rambles on about how he'll give Buddy a chance to invest in another project with him. This suggestion presses Buddy's "on" button, and Buddy starts freaking out, telling the guy that it is NOT possible that he's lost his $70,000. Oh, that's a lot of money. Their voices raise and a guy at a neighboring table stands up and asks them to quiet down. Buddy jumps to his feet and shouts, "You redneck son-of-a-bitch, do you need silence to watch nekkid women?!?" A question for the ages there. Buddy accuses the clammy guy of stealing his money, which doesn't sit so well: the guy starts talking back a bit to Buddy. So: it is on. The two brawl across the room, breaking glass, knocking over decorative lamps (?!) and basically just having it out, Roadhouse style. But as the hair metal guitar fades out on the soundtrack, and the somber instrumental music fades in, and the brawl turns less "grappling" and more "Buddy Garrity might kill this guy," leaning over him and punching him repeatedly, we get the editorial point. Buddy Garrity is a Man on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.