In a strongly worded letter to Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, “Friday Night Lights” creator Peter Berg says Romney’s campaign has “plagiarized” the show’s inspirational mantra “Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose.”
“Your politics and campaign are clearly not aligned with the themes we portrayed in our series,” Berg writes in the letter, which was first posted online by The Hollywood Reporter.
Romney has been using the phrase in stump speeches and it’s currently on the banner adorning his Facebook page. “Friday Night Lights” fans know the phrase as Coach Eric Taylor’s preferred way of riling up his high school football players before or during a big game. The Emmy-winning NBC/DirecTV drama series was never expressly political, but its storylines included a teenage girl’s decision to have an abortion, a young man’s father serving in combat in Iraq and characters struggling with tough economic situations.
In the letter, Berg noted the only similarity he can see between the show and Romney’s politics: “The only relevant comparison that I see between your campaign and ‘Friday Night Lights’ is in the character of Buddy Garrity – who turned his back on American car manufacturers selling imported cars from Japan.”
Berg’s letter to Romney follows a more measured request from Sesame Workshop asking Barack Obama’s campaign to stop using Big Bird in attack ads on Romney.
The complete text of Berg’s letter follows:
I created the TV show “Friday Night Lights” and came up with the phrase “Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose.”
I was not thrilled when I saw that you have plagiarized this expression to support your campaign by using it on posters, your Facebook page and as part of your stump speeches. Your politics and campaign are clearly not aligned with the themes we portrayed in our series.
The only relevant comparison that I see between your campaign and “Friday Night Lights” is in the character of Buddy Garrity – who turned his back on American car manufacturers selling imported cars from Japan. Your use of the expression falsely and inappropriately associates “Friday Night Lights” with the Romney/Ryan campaign. Mitt, we all wish you and your family all the best. We are grateful for your support of our beloved show, but we are not in any way affiliated with you or your campaign. Please come up with your own campaign slogan