Cheer season 2, episode 9 recap – the ending explained – who won Nationals?

By Daniel Hart
Published: January 12, 2022
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Cheer season 2, episode 9 recap - the ending explained - Netflix series


Episode 9 is the pinnacle of what the production team was trying to achieve.

This recap of Netflix’s Cheer season 2, episode 9, “Daytona Pt. 2: If the Judges Disagree,” — the ending explained — does contain spoilers.

Read the review of season 2. 

You may feel emotionally exhausted if you’ve made it to episode 9. Cheer season 2 has thrown a lot at its audience, and episode 9 is the pinnacle of what the production team was trying to achieve. There’s something about sports and athletics that resonates so strongly with audiences. This episode is the reason why we should never take competition for granted. We should embrace it. It brings out the best in us. The lessons are too valuable.

I genuinely hope we never lose our competitive spirit as human beings. It would be a great shame.

Cheer season 2, episode 9 recap – the ending explained

Episode 9 has plenty riding on it as it documents Daytona day 2. Day 1 was not the best for TVCC as they had a slight error in their preliminary performance. Head Coach Vontae Johnson goes through the scores they can achieve, and with their technical skills, there’s hope for day 2. Meanwhile, Monica feels okay about the scores so far but states it is a subjective sport. There was an air of cynicism in the way she said this — it’s almost like she feels the judges want TVCC to win. And to be fair, it is not an outlandish claim to make — TVCC thinks that the judges have their back too. The night before the finals presents plenty of nerves for both teams, but practice they must — there’s no rest in this world.

Day 2 arrives, and TVCC are pumped before their performance. The demons from day one are gone. They give it their absolute all, and it’s an excellent performance. The team is buzzing after — they know that it was an outstanding performance. They know it will rattle their competitors.

And it does; the energy and excitement emanating from TVCC reach Navarro; the nerves are so apparent, and what follows is an adrenaline-inducing team talk beforehand. By the time Navarro reaches the stage, there’s plenty of energy and excitement. However, in their performance, one of the routines fails slightly — Gillian, the flyer, misjudges one of her moves. It’s all about margins in this game. However, Navarro keeps on pushing until the end, but the way they walk off the stage is depressing; it’s almost like they knew they had lost. Gillian is understandably upset, but Monica comforts her. It’s a team game.

Regardless, the pressure on these young athletes is incredible. As an adult, you have to sit back and admire it. It’s so motivational.

The award ceremony is virtual, presumably due to covid-19, which is confusing because there were crowds for the performances. The TVCC team has the confidence and belief that it was their best performance in years. However, they did slip in the preliminaries, which brings an air of doubt. Navarro’s slip-up on the second day did not feel as detrimental. The results come in, and Navarro comes second — TVCC are the National Champions, and the celebrations are emotional and overwhelming to watch, while Navarro’s camp looks like a devastating funeral. TVCC overcame the giant in the cheerleading game.

From an outside perspective, we must ask the essential questions; was the media attention generated from Netflix the reason that Navarro was undone, or was it just not their year? There’s no denying TVCC’s achievement, but many will wonder if that was a factor. Regardless, TVCC’s victory felt like a cornerstone of belief — those athletes genuinely believed they could do it, and they did. They gave the judges no reason to bring down their scores.

The ending

As the episode ends, the series brings that overhanging gloom of defeat. We are treated to a La’Darius and Monica reunion. It’s emotional. They say their peace. It’s clear they love each other like mother and son, and they have their moment to appreciate each other. We needed to see this; their fallout did not leave a good taste in our mouths, and leaving questions for the third season would have been unnecessary.

Monica is asked how long she can keep coaching for these nationals; she doesn’t know, but the fire in her belly remains. There are plenty of lessons in defeat.

We go again.

What did you think of Netflix’s Cheer season 2, episode 9, and the ending? Comment below. 

You can watch Cheer season 2 with a subscription to the streaming service. 

Endings Explained, Netflix, Streaming Service, TV - Ending Explained, TV Recaps
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