Friday Night Lights


Ellie Bonnette, Editor-In-Chief

Have you ever wondered where the football term, “Friday Night Lights” comes from? Well, this notable event is inspired by H.G. “Buzz” Bissinger’s non-fiction book Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream (1990) and the 2003 series based on it. Originally released on NBC on October 3, 2006, Friday Night Lights appeared on Netflix this past August. Old-time viewers are excited to rewatch this heartening show while first-time viewers have fallen in love with the plot and the characters.

Friday Night Lights takes place in a small Texas town, Dillion. Season one begins with a family-man, Eric Taylor getting hired as the head football coach of the Dillon Panthers. Coach Taylor immediately feels the pressure of winning with arguably the best football team in Texas. He not only wants, but needs his team to succeed, given that money is tight for his family of three. With the help of star quarterback, Jason Street, it was clear that Dillon would easily make it to state. However, an unexpected and tragic incident resulted in Jason Street being out for the season. Now, it is up to quarterback #2, Matt Saracen, to replace and fulfill the role of Jason Street. 

Overall, the show revolves around high school football and relationships. For the first three seasons, the show focuses on West Dillon High football, and for the last two the show focuses on West Dillon High and East Dillon High football, similar to the current football centered teen drama, All American. Throughout the show, it is easy to infer the stress and pressure of winning small town Texas football. Additionally, characters in this show undergo complete personality changes and it is satisfying to see them mature as the series progresses.

When asked about this series, an anonymous senior responds, “Before watching FNL, I very much disliked football and thought it was stupid. However, after binging all five seasons, I soon realized how profound this sport is for so many teenagers. In this show, football has literally saved so many young men’s lives. It is truly inspiring.”

In 2011, after five seasons, the show won two Emmy awards. Kyle Chandler, who played Coach Taylor, took home the outstanding lead actor award and Jason Katims, showrunner, took home the outstanding writing in a drama series award. Actors such as Michael B. Jordan, Taylor Kitsch, Connie Britton, Kyle Chandler, Minka Kelly, Aimee Teegarden, Brad Leland, and Zach Gilford star in Friday Night Lights. According to, Friday Night Lights was one of Michael B. Jordan’s first big acting gigs, and, “[his]  performance wowed fans of the series and served notice to critics that he was an actor to keep an eye on.” 

Friday Night Lights is one of those inspiring and entertaining shows that will leave you with a feeling of satisfaction. If you happen to be looking for a binge-worthy series, Friday Night Lights may be the fit for you!