Ted Lasso season 2, episode 2 recap – what happened in “Lavender”?

July 30, 2021
Cole Sansom 0
Apple TV+, Weekly TV
4

Summary

Roy and Jamie consider new career options while Ted starts to lose his grip.

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4

Summary

Roy and Jamie consider new career options while Ted starts to lose his grip.

This recap of Apple TV+s Ted Lasso season 2, episode 2, “Lavender,” contains significant spoilers.

Read the recap of the previous episode. 

Following from last week’s episode, the season is once again reinforcing its central theme — of change and how we adapt to new circumstances. “Don’t make changes that could throw off a player’s headspace,” Nate gripes to his new underling, but it’s clear that he’s the one whose mind is out of whack. Now an assistant coach, Nate takes all his anxiety out on Will, the new kit-man. He puts lavender detergent in the wash, pineapple in the water — deviations from protocol that Nate can’t help reprimanding him for. “We don’t want calm athletes we want killer athletes,” he says.

If there’s one person who switches between kind and killer on a dime it’s Roy Kent. After the girls’ football team he was coaching ends their season, he’s once again adrift. Roy comes home to find Keeley masturbating to his emotional retirement speech. She’s turned on by his vulnerability, and she convinces him to test out the Sky Sports job. It doesn’t help that she compares his current purposeless to Jamie.

Speaking of Jamie, the once bully of Richmond F.C. faces embarrassment after embarrassment. He’s voted off of the reality show, then announces his intent to return to Man City on live TV, only to learn that Man City does not want him back. Even his agent can’t help him (“You were like a son to me. Now you’re like a dead son, so I love you even more.”), so he turns to the only person who can, Ted Lasso.

At the pub, Jamie slides up to his former coach. “How you been,” Ted asks. “Awesome, best, pretty good. OK. Depressed. It’s all s**t, Ted” he responds, peeling down layers of artifice faster than season one Jamie could. It turns out that Jamie quit football to “p**s off” his dad, who we know is compulsively obsessed with his son’s athletic prowess. Yet Ted, the model of a kind father whose gentility allows his (metaphorical) children to work on himself, believes it not a good idea for Jamie to return.

In one way, he’s right. The thought of Tartt returning causes Sam to storm out of practice. “No teammate has ever made me feel as bad about myself as Jamie did,” he confides. The Diamond Dogs see Sam’s point of view; the price is too high, it’s not worth the emotional turmoil Jamie’s return would cause. But Richmond hasn’t won a match in a while, and Ted secretly feels that bringing Jamie back could give them the boost they badly deserve.

Ted, however, is busy masking his own nervous feelings over the arrival of Dr. Sharon Fieldstone, although it threatens to break his nice-guy veneer at any moment. Fieldstone is an interesting foil to Ted; previously his puppy-dog enthusiasm is used to break down icy, walled-up characters. Sharon exhibits no surface faults, and in their meeting, Ted comes off as the a*****e.

“Why pay someone to do what a friend should do for you for free,” Ted says, an odd remark for someone who believes his own job to be emotional nourishment to say. Rebecca agrees with him, but they both fail to express themselves further than that. Ted’s calm facade is rapidly deteriorating. 

Simultaneously, Roy’s natural crudeness comes out in his TV appearance. Despite a brief taunt to “not be too emotional,” he says “Chelsea was s**t.” The host apologizes for his language, but Roy doubles down, speaking truth through profanity. It’s a hit, and Keeley receives a (fake-looking) email from Sky Sports inviting him back. For Roy, the experience was invigorating, and as a thank-you, he plays Keeley the video while he goes down on her. After some time in the wilderness, Roy’s found his home.

By the end of the episode, he’s not the only one who’s made their way back, in one form or another (and no, I’m not talking about Higgins finding an office space next to Nate). Dr. Fieldstone tells Ted her assessment of the team; it’s a great environment, but their lack of wins must be putting some pressure on Ted. And she’s right, for the next day, to everyone’s shock, Jamie walks out onto the field. And from the look Sam gives Ted, things are far from healed.

Additional points
  • Going with the episode’s theme, Coach Beard is now sleeping in the office after a fight with his girlfriend. On the one hand, I want to see more of his personal life, but on the other, I like Beard as a mystery.
  • “How do you feel about taking ecstasy every night for 3 straight weeks.”
  • “Apparently, 9-year-olds aren’t allowed to do headers yet.”
  • “Old people are so wise. They’re like tall Yodas.”

What did you think of Ted Lasso season 2, episode 2? Comment below.

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