I’m only one episode into Ted Lasso, so excuse me if I’m way off, but after watching the first episode, my first thought was this:
It’s just the 1989 film Major League, except instead of baseball, it’s soccer.
Wealthy female owner and corporate male sidekick attempt to ruin a major league sports franchise for personal gain.
In Major League, the owner needs ticket sales to plummet so she can move the team from Cleveland to Miami.
In Ted Lasso, the owner wants the team to fail because her ex-husband adores the team.
In order to accomplish this goal, both owners hire managers who are clearly out of their league. In Major League, the owner hires an aging manager from a far lower level of baseball. In Ted Lasso, the owner hires a successful football coach who has never coached soccer.
Either way, the managers are expected to fail because of a lack of experience.
Perhaps things will change as the season moves forward. Maybe the show is intentionally modeled after Major League. I’m trying to avoid spoilers, so I didn’t check. But even the casting of the shows seem eerily similar.
Here is the female owner and male flunky of Major League and Ted Lasso.
Also, here are the managers of the teams, Lou Brown and Ted Lasso.
Notice how both have enormous mustaches?
If the similarities continue, I can expect that in future episodes, the team will be stocked with aging and ineffective soccer players, and that discord will erupt when one soccer player unintentionally sleeps with another soccer player’s wife, who is seeking revenge for her husband’s infidelity.
Also, the team will discover the true motivations of the owner, rally against her, bond as a team, and win the championship.
I hope Ted Lasso proves to be an extraordinary show. My fear is that it’s been so hyped for so damn long that it’s going ti be impossible to meet or exceed the accolades that so many people have bestowed upon it.
Especially if it’s simply a derivative of a movie from my past.
Only one thing has ever managed to meet or exceed the considerable hype foisted upon it in my experience:
I heard about that musical for more than a year before finally seeing it, so I couldn’t help but worry that it would never measure up to the praise. Less than 30 minutes into the show, my skepticism was washed away.
The filmed version of the musical for Disney+ was just as good. Maybe even better given I saw the musical live from the mezzanine.
I’m hoping Ted Lasso can meet or exceed the hype as well. I’m once again entering a show with a bit of skepticism based upon the overwhelming praise that it has received and the pilot episode’s striking similarities to something I already enjoyed 33 years ago, but I also begin every film, television series, play, or musical with an open heart, an open mind, and the hope that it will be excellent.
I want the world to be filled with great entertainment. I want to love everything I see and hear. I won’t pretend to love something if I don’t, but I give everything an honest chance to be great.
I really hope Ted Lasso is great.