Ted Lasso is unlike many other comedy shows out there, but what makes it so different?
Ted Lasso has gained the admiration of viewers all over the world, but what exactly makes this comedy show different than all others? This Apple TV original has taken off since its first season was first released late last year in August, it seems to have come out of nowhere. Yet, it has become a beloved show by many. Who would have thought that a comedy show about Soccer would appeal to such a huge American audience?
Though there are a plethora of reasons that could answer to its massive success, from its beautiful filmography, the clever and spontaneous writing, and the never-ending charisma of our protagonist played by Jason Sudeikis. But at its core, this show is so much more different than its competitors and it all boils to an essential reason: it has heart. The show developed by Apple borrows a premise from a bit written for NBC Sports back in the early 2010s, but this time the quick-witted mustachioed protagonist is set to manage a fictional team in the same prestigious league named AFC Richmond.
The show is marketed primarily as a comedy, and the first few episodes are indeed goofy and a little bland, just a run-of-the-mill comedy show. But, for every joke that may seem somewhat edgy, there is a soft exploration and reflection of the insensitivities that these jokes may carry with them.
Nearly every joke in the series takes into account the lived experiences of its diverse cast of characters and tried to elevate its comedy by trying to elevate women and minorities in the show, rather than ridicule them and point a finger at some of the cultural differences that may appear odd to those who never encountered individuals outside their own communities.
There is something powerful to be said about a comedy trying to remedy the ways some shows have portrayed multiculturalism in the past. But putting those points aside, the utterly amazing portrayal by Jason Sudeikis takes the show from mediocrity to greatness. The character of Ted Lasso is the embodiment of a man of great wisdom, awareness, and empathy to those who may not be in the same privileged position he occupies.
The character is painfully aware of his position in this world and he uses his charisma and optimism to bring out the best of those around him. Sports, by their very nature, expose the hard reality and the brutality that it takes for a team or an individual to achieve greatness. In fact, nearly all other films or television shows about sports tend to follow the tired cliche where an individual has to take extreme measures to reach their potential.
Ted Lasso teaches us the complete opposite has a solid theme at its core. It’s all about the team’s morale and their mental health. Throughout both seasons there have been many times where conflicts between players have caused tremendous setbacks when it comes to performances. Coach Ted and his second-in-command coach Beard have a very unique approach that seems to be unheard of in the world of sports. They believe that personal relationships are essential for the development of a coherent and organized team.
Not only that, but the writers take such a subtle yet powerful approach to discussing mental health issues that have been largely ignored by many other shows of its kind. Out protagonist himself suffers from extreme bouts of anxiety and depression, yet he copes with this deep anxiety by always putting on a smile and performing a show for anyone he interacts with. Yet, these mental health issues are not demonized in any way whatsoever. They don’t try to explore its dark origins or try to poke fun at their expense, they simply are. These issues are omnipresent in the show and they’re treated with a serious tone that encompasses these types of subjects.
Squid Game is an excellent series, and for fans that are left wanting more, it’s not a bad idea to turn to video games to help fill the void.
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