Vince’s ego continues to bring its A game to the A plot. We open on a game already lost and piece together what happened via flashback and announcer voice over. Luke and Vince scrap in the locker room post-game, each blaming the other for the loss. But later on Crowley pinpoints the exact problem when he tells Eric that Vince, too busy showboating and being recruited, has lost control of his team. Coach Taylor benches Vince for one practice. Ornette tells Vince it’s just a “power move” on Coach’s part, to show them who’s in charge. No need to worry. But when Vince fails to show up to a one-on-one mentoring session with Luke, Eric goes whole hog and benches Vince for the game. No matter how much Luke begs Coach NOT to keep him in as QB1, Coach persists, drawing out, once again, some hidden well of strength and confidence from a faltering boy, and Luke leads the team to a win and — more importantly for those of us depending on the drama of a final playoff series — a spot in the after season. Meanwhile, teamless Vince ends up Jess-less as well, as Jess finally gets sick of his narcissism. The poor kid is all floating and alone and lost until his mother finally steps up and tells him that maybe he shouldn’t always listen to his father.
Tami continues to mentor Epyck, coaxing out the tough girl’s soft side when she invites her over for dinner during which Gracie Bell works her Brian Eno charm. But when Laurel accuses Epyck of stealing money from her purse, the subsequent meeting between the three escalates and finds Epyck accidentally shoving Tami’s head into a plate glass window. Ouch. Tami protests — “Y’all it was just an accident!”– but Epyck gets hauled off by the police and sent to juvie. And thus Tami Taylor’s Dangerous Minds Gangster’s Paradise dreams are dashed.
Becky works a different dream, and that is the one where the teen abortionee takes a job at a strip club (okay so she was only filling in temporarily for Mindy) and reconciling herself to her boyfriend’s abortion-protesting mom. Yes, it’s a very specific dream, but it’s one I’m totally behind, because I am completely charmed by Becky under the influence of Mindy. I wish Almodovar would do a movie titled “Women Under the Influence of Ole Sis.” But, sorry to bury this particular lede: Mindy needed the night off of work because… she is pregnant again! Pregnant by the “nacho smelling” Billy Riggins. Mmmm, nacho baby.