AFC Richmond, much like Ted Lasso, is approaching the end of the season. On the heels of a lengthy win streak, the club sees itself within striking distance of the top of the table. However, the mighty Manchester City stands in their way of even having a chance at finishing in first place. The Premier League teams go head-to-head this week.
If the pressure from the upcoming matchup isn’t enough, Ted Lasso receives a surprise visit from his mother. Becky Ann Baker makes Dottie everything you would expect Momma Lasso to be. She is warm, charming, and commands a room. It’s so easy for everyone to fall for her midwestern personality, and a joy to watch everyone be so inviting as if it were their own mom.
However, she wouldn’t travel across the pond unannounced so we know something is up. As Dottie has all her son’s positive qualities, she also shares some of his same weaknesses. It’s quite a comparison seeing how their amiable nature is an over compensation of the frustrations they bottle up inside. The difference is Ted seeks treatment for his mental health and we see how far he’s progressed with his ability to confront his mom. The scene is jarring with the language used, but it also represents a lifetime of unresolved issues. Even Dottie realizes the healing her child has undergone in therapy, and maybe she can follow in his footsteps.
Furthermore, there is much chatter that this is the final season of Ted Lasso. Through the visit and subsequent quarrel, the show paves the way for the departure of its titular character. It’s not a surprise since there’s been a gradual build of the reason throughout the series, especially this season.
Speaking of mothers, Jamie visits his own ahead of the Man City clash. All his recent model teammate approach has dulled his edge and he’s in a funk. The visit back home humanizes the football player even more and it’s endearing to see him be such a momma’s boy. In addition, stepping into his childhood room is also good for some laughs. Also, keeping on brand with the series’ positivity, there is progress with his estranged dad.
Jamie’s arc on this season of Ted Lasso has been heartwarming to watch. He is the star player, and his performance on the field in the match shows why. Though everything about the football showdown is cliché, it still creates the drama and feel-good story well. The response from his former club is symbolic of the appreciation of all the hard work Jamie Tart, and Phil Dunster, have put in all season. The cameo of Pep Guardiola is a little corny, but is a nice tie in to remind you this is the Premier League since none of the real players ever show up.
The only aspect of Jamie’s storyline that feels bizarre is the inclusion of Roy and Keeley. Individually, you can see why both would try to help him out of his funk; Roy has become a big brother and Keeley is always caring, even towards an ex-boyfriend. But with all three, considering the relationship entanglements, it feels weird, particularly with Roy making a move in Jamie’s childhood bed. There’s nothing to be gained revisiting this awkward love triangle.
The most exciting part of Ted Lasso’s finale will be to watch Nate return to the Greyhounds. This has been a reunion long in the making with proper development. What seals the deal is an unexpected confession from Coach Beard. It sheds insight on his and Ted’s relationship pre-AFC Richmond and plays with the recurring theme of forgiveness. You don’t expect something so dark that it’s an emotional gut punch. It feels Nate is the one doing the comforting rather than the other way around.
“Mom City” is a deserved ode to Jamie Tart with touching themes of mothers and forgiveness that all help build the excitement for the upcoming finale.
New episodes of Ted Lasso are released Wednesdays on Apple TV+.
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