All American – Things Done Changed – Review

Spoilers

The eagerly anticipated return of “All American” graced our screens tonight, with an aptly titled episode, “Things Done Changed.” True to its name, the lives of the characters have indeed undergone significant transformations. Nkechi Okoro Caroll, the show runner, teased in a TVLine article this past week that this season will delve deep into the characters’ journey of growth and resilience, amidst their evolving circumstances. The series picked up with a one year time jump that saw Olivia making her way back to California after an extended stay in England, and Asher and Jaymee embracing parenthood with the arrival of their new baby boy. A notable shift this season is the exit of Hunter Clowdus, who will not be reprising his role as JJ moving forward. 

“Things Done Changed” – ALL AMERICAN. Pictured: Bre-Z as Tamia Cooper and Daniel Ezra as Spencer James. Photo: Troy Harvey/The CW ©2024 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
On the football front, the GAU team has bounced back from the tumultuous Bountygate, with Spencer emerging as a leading figure in the race to the NFL. Despite the spotlight, Spencer remains humble, attempting to share the limelight with Jordan, though to no avail. The reporters and the head of the University are only interested in their star player- Spencer. Jordan’s envy of Spencer is palpable, hinting at a brewing storm in their friendship. Coach Kenny, in his wisdom, acknowledges Spencer’s growth and subtly reminds him to stay focused, especially with Olivia back in the picture. Coach Kenny has his own issues to deal with, as the head of the university hired a new addition to the coaching staff to keep Kenny on his toes and make sure he is maximizing Spencer and Jordan’s talent on the field.
“Things Done Changed” – ALL AMERICAN. Pictured: Michael Evans Behling as Jordan Baker and Daniel Ezra as Spencer James. Photo: Troy Harvey/The CW ©2024 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Off the field, Spencer organized a grand welcome-back part for Olivia. Coop’s keen observation revealed Spencer’s hesitance to be alone with Olivia, stemming from a visit to London where Olivia confessed that she likes who she has become in England and how much she has changed. Spencer is haunted by the fear that Olivia’s transformation might have distanced her from their relationship. Last season’s finale left fans overjoyed as Spencer and Olivia reunited. Yet, finding their place back into each other’s lives will prove complex as Olivia contemplates the evolution of her identity. It is clear that the narrative for these two this season will be about navigating their relationship with all of the changes that have occurred. They already broke up once because their lives were going in different directions, sometimes love just isn’t enough. 
“Things Done Changed” – ALL AMERICAN. Pictured: Bre-Z as Tamia Cooper, Michael Evans Behling as Jordan Baker, Daniel Ezra as Spencer James and Samantha Logan as Olivia Baker. Photo: Troy Harvey/The CW ©2024 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Layla and Jordan’s engagement brings its own set of challenges, with both venturing into new life stages. Jordan is focused on making it in the NFL and Layla has undergone a new business venture, opening up a lounge. So far things seem stable between them, but as Layla works through her guilt over what happened to Patience, and they attempt to plan a wedding amidst their busy lives, there are sure to be rocky roads ahead. 
Meanwhile, Patience’s recovery from being stabbed by superfan Miko, showcased how determined she is to take control of her story, marking an important chapter in her life. Despite admitting her true feelings for Patience to Spencer last season, Coop is adamant that she needs to give Patience space to heal and decides to hold back on letting her know how she really feels. This can’t be easy for Coop, and it will be interesting to see how much longer she will be able to keep her feelings at bay moving forward. 
“Things Done Changed” – ALL AMERICAN. Pictured: Chelsea Tavares as Patience. Photo: Troy Harvey/The CW ©2024 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Finally, as Jaymee and Asher figure out how to be parents, they face unexpected challenges that will test how well they can adjust to being parents while maintaining the career aspirations that they have for themselves.

The theme of this season is definitely growth and as the characters navigate their ever changing lives with the complexities of their relationships, it is sure to be a compelling one.These characters are evolving from their late teens into full-fledged adulthood, and it is commendable that the writers embrace the reality of how life changes dramatically in one’s twenties, affecting both personal growth and relationships. 

What did you think of the premiere, All American fans? Do Spencer and Olivia have what it takes to persevere despite all of the changes? Will Jordan and Spencer be able to salvage their friendship despite the tension between them? Share your thoughts below and engage with me on X at @middleofCanada.

About the Author – Cristina Almeida
Cristina is a proud Canadian, and dog mom. She is an elementary school Guidance Counsellor by day and TV buff by night. When she isn’t working or binge watching her fave shows, she enjoys spending time with her two dogs, a terrier mix named Penny and Chihuahua/Pug cross named Holly. Twitter: @Middleof Canada. Instagram: @Dogmomontheprairie
Recent Reviews (All Reviews) 

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