Are the longer episodes hurting the quality of this once-hot Apple TV+ series?
Ted Lasso Season 3 Episode 2 juggled many storylines, but it’s disconcerting that a significant chunk of the scenes felt like they could have been cut to make a leaner installment.
Ted Lasso has been straddling the fine line between comedy and drama for a while now, and “Chelsea” was the first time I wanted the series to pick a lane and stick with it.
We’ll start with Keeley because she has the most to lose out of all the characters.
All eyes are on her as the face of her PR company, so it’s unfortunate she felt the need to bring Shandy into the mix.
Shandy strikes me as someone who prefers hard partying to focusing on her career, and that was perfectly reiterated when she urged Keeley to use the company credit card to have mimosas at work.
Keeley is kind, so she wanted to bring Shandy in and give her a chance at a career she wouldn’t typically get without a certain level of experience.
Keeley: Barbara, I would love for you to meet Shandy. She’s the newest member of KJPR.
Barbara: Oh. Um, what position has she been hired for?
Keeley: She will be consulting for affiliate management and… client relationships. Yeah.
Barbara: Okay. Would you have a-a seat, uh, Shandy? Shandy, is it?
Barbara: Yeah, just put it in there. Put the sweet in there. I’d love to know what experience you have in these areas.
Shandy: Uh, in relationships, tons. The rest of it, not much.
Barbara: And where did you go to university?
Shandy: I didn’t go university.
Barbara: Didn’t go?
Barbara: Okay. And what were you doing right before this?
Shandy: I was modeling.
Barbara: Yeah. Okay, thanks, Shandy. All right. I think I’ve got it. So you’ve hired a former model with no previous experience, no higher education for a job that doesn’t exist. Lovely. Well, welcome to the team, Shandy.
Like Keeley, Shandy has the gift of the gab and could excel at the role Barbara and Keeley agreed on after their little argument.
In Barbara’s eyes, Keeley was bringing her friend in for a role in which someone with experience would excel.
Barbara was probably thinking more about the optics of such an endeavor and what could go wrong.
Ted Lasso is great at making you think things are going one way, only to pull the rug from under us viewers, so hopefully, I’m wrong here, but I don’t think Shandy will be a good influence on Keeley or KJPR.
That being said, Barbara was rough on Shandy. The best action would have been to pull Keeley aside and express her concerns about the new hire.
Keeley’s decision strikes me as something she said in the moment, not expecting Shandy to follow up and try to get the job.
Hopefully, if things do start going south, Keeley recognizes it and takes action that doesn’t undo all of the good she’s done in her career of late.
Keeley seems desperate for an office filled with big personalities, but people are there to work, and not everyone loves their job.
Rebecca: You know, Rupert, I was a little bit surprised when you bought West Ham. I always thought that Richmond was your one true love.
Rupert: Oh. Guess I’m just like any man. Just get bored with the same old, same old.
I didn’t expect everyone to learn of Keeley and Roy’s breakup so soon, but they weren’t exactly hiding it if Isaac figured out they had parted ways.
Isaac regularly pops up with some comic relief, so I didn’t expect him to tell Jamie the couple was done.
Just when it seemed like Jamie would slip back into his old ways and try to win Keeley back, he showcased his growth.
The Jamie of Ted Lasso Season 1 would have laughed in Roy’s face about the breakup, but the Jame of Ted Lasso Season 3 was far more empathetic.
Roy: Who told you that?
Jamie: No one. I use body science. Why? Is it true?
Roy: Hmm. What’s that fսcking face?
Jamie: It’s called empathy, you dusty, old fart. Look, as someone who’s been dumped by Keeley, I get it.
Roy: She didn’t dump me.
Jamie: You dumped her? Why?
Roy: I don’t want to talk about it. Why’d you come in here? Oh, let me guess. You want to know if it’s okay to ask her out, right?
Jamie: No, I was just, I was just seeing if you were okay, man.
It’s just a shame Roy thought he was coming from a place of malice initially.
It’s hard to believe these two have come this far, but I hope they continue to carve out a bond because they’ve shown they can be cordial when communicating.
Sadly, communicating isn’t one of Roy’s strongest traits, and he tends to be misunderstood through his actions.
Had he communicated his grievances with Trent Crimm from the get-go, he wouldn’t have had to warn the players of talking to him.
Brett Goldstein played the more vulnerable shades of Roy’s personality to perfection, and it’s now easier to understand why Roy was so annoyed with Trent.
At 17 years old, Roy was probably unsure whether he would have a lengthy career in football, so hearing such intense criticism from a journalist like Trent had to stick with him.
The more exciting part of this storyline is how the team will react to Trent on their worst days.
After the events of Ted Lasso Season 2, it seemed like there was no longer a place for Trent on the show, so writing a book about one of the most undermined football teams was not on my bingo card.
Isaac: Whoa. Keeley and Roy have broken up.
Jamie: What? Who told you that?
Isaac: It’s not “who,” bruv. It’s “what.” Kinesics. Study of body language. Just look at ’em. No eye contact, Keeley’s crossed arms. Roy’s clenched arse. It’s science.
Trent has a bond with Ted and respect for the team, so I don’t anticipate him painting them in a bad light unless something terrible happens.
The comedy in this installment stemmed from the fight to bring Zava to the team.
Rebecca knew from the get-go that he was a big name to get and would be a key driving force in Richmond’s success this season, but she also recognized Rupert would be all over him.
Rebecca is super observant, and she understands the lengths her ex-husband is willing to go to to get what he wants, so she realized she had to amp that up a few gears.
Her conversation with Rupert was telling. He’s happy to tear Rebecca down with his words to the point that the only way forward for her is to get back at him with her actions.
As a result, she knew she had to find a way to corner Zava and make him feel like whatever team he went to, he would have to make a difference to be remembered.
Richmond has been struggling. There’s no question about that, but someone with the star power and skill of Zava could help the ailing team become stronger and more resilient to the intense media scrutiny.
It’s hard to believe we’ve gotten this far without speaking about Ted, but it feels like he’s been taking a backseat from the narrative in many respects.
It’s hard not to think that the series is checking if it still resonates without its leading man, and truthfully, the show could go on in another capacity without Jason Sudeikis.
However, we need to find a better balance between drama and humor if the show will stand the test of time.
That’s all I got, Ted Lasso Fanatics.
What are your thoughts on Keeley bringing Shandy into the mix? Do you think it’s a mistake?
You are such a fսcking chickenshit. I mean, if you were great, truly great, you could play anywhere. But instead, you choose a club like West Ham, because it’s big and shiny, and you know that they’ll win whether you’re there or not. And you’ll never have to wonder if you’re still as good as you tell everyone you are. But you and I know that you’re not. You’re overrated. You’re overpaid. And you eat too much fսcking asparagus.
What’s your take on Roy’s treatment of Trent? Was it mean, or do you think he was genuinely harmed by the past comments?
Do you think Rebecca was the sole reason Zava decided to join AFC Richmond?
What do you think Rupert will do in retaliation?
Hit the comments below.
Ted Lasso continues Wednesdays on Apple TV+.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.