Ted Lasso (Season 3 Episode 11): First of all, a big shout-out to Pep Guardiola for being gracious enough to play a fictional version of himself- who ends up losing the all-important game against Richmond but still shows the true spirit and congratulates Coach Ted and his former player Jamie Tartt.
By now, Ted Lasso has reached a point in this season from where it is impossible to go down- unless due to miraculously bad writing. Of course, it continues to deliver in every single episode, and the current one is no exception. An episode that packs a lot of punch both in terms of emotional conflicts as well as the story; the penultimate episode of this season is a winner on all fronts. It also happens to be the longest episode of the show, clocking at seventy-two minutes, at the end of which you still crave more.
Ted Lasso (Season 3 Episode 11) ‘Mom City’ Recap
Richmond is on a fifteen-game winning streak, and their next opponent is the mighty Manchester City at the Etihad. A win takes Richmond to a point where they can actually win it all, but a loss will make City champion. The day before the gameday, Ted gets an unexpected visitor.
Hello there, Mother Lasso
It is none other than Dottie Lasso, the mother of Coach Lasso himself- who is currently on a European adventure and has decided to give her son a surprise visit. Mother Lasso quickly embraces all of Richmond, and everyone is in love with her- which clearly indicates Ted is her mother’s son, after all. However, something is still wrong between the mother and son duo under all the candies and cookies.
Checking in with Nate, the Great
Nate’s character arc in this season has to be one of the most interesting ones so far, I would say. This episode finds him waiting tables at “A Taste of Athens,” which everyone finds surprising- including his girlfriend and now colleague, Jade. The customers at the hotels are speculating if it was a drug that is responsible for how things have turned out for Nate. Meanwhile, we get Nate’s first real tryst with his former tribe (other than the awkward brush with Ted in episode 4) when Colin, Issac, and Will go to the restaurant to ask if he would like to come back. Nate declines as he doesn’t think he should go back to Richmond after everything he has done to them.
At Richmond HQ, when Ted gets to know about his former colleague’s latest job, he considers giving Nate a second chance by inviting him back. While Roy gets on the board, Coach Beard is very much against the idea of welcoming the “Judas” Nate.
We need to talk about Jamie Tartt
Jamie Tartt, arguably one of the best redemption arcs that we have seen on Television, is going through a personal crisis. With the Manchester City game ahead of them, Richmond’s number 9 is understandably freaked out about facing his former club at their den but, more importantly, about having a potential encounter with his disapproving father.
A visibly concerned Roy asks for Keeley’s help to get through to Jamie, but that pretty much backfires when Jamie gets further spooked the night before the game. Noticing Jamie hurriedly leaving their Manchester hotel, Roy and Keeley go after him. However, Jamie soon finds out the duo is on his tail, so he takes the two to wherever he was going. Of course, he was going to visit his mom after all.
Jamie’s mother and stepdad give the trio of Jamie, Roy, and Keeley a warm welcome. While his step-dad takes Roy and Keeley to give a tour of their home, where the main attraction happens to be Jamie’s room, Jamie has a heart-to-heart with his mom which effectively takes away all the doubts he had inside.
Ted Lasso (Season 3 Episode 11) Ending Explained
I thought the central theme of this episode is parenting, in particular- the relationship between mother and son. While both Ted and Jamie appear to have mothers who love their sons to the moon and back, the difference is evident in the two relationships. While Jamie’s mother never shied away from the situation with the father and never tried to shield her son with the pretense that all is fine.
Ted’s mother, despite all the love she had for her son, bottled her own emotions, and the son picked the same from his mother. The Ted we see is as cheerful as Dottie, but just like this mother- Ted has a lot stuck inside, and the panic attacks are a clear sign of that. At the end of the episode, a frustrated Ted finally confronts his mother, and the two of them have a real conversation after all. Ted also explicitly mentions how going to a therapist has actually helped him, which pretty much makes Dr. Sharon an MVP without having much of a presence in this season.
Man City 0: 2 Richmond
When Richmond takes the field at Etihad, they do seem like the team which is on the purple patch. Jamie Tartt expectedly got booed by the fans of his former club, but that doesn’t stop him from making a stellar assist to a much-necessary Colin Hughes goal early on. I liked the fact that instead of infusing any flimsy twist, they decided to keep things pretty much real. Richmond outplays City in their own backyard, and Pep Guardiola has no answer despite all his efforts. Bet he misses an Erling Haaland in this world!
The game does not go completely drama free, though- and most of it centers around Jamie Tartt. While his former teammates continue to go rough and tough on him, Jamie keeps going at it. Richmond’s goalie, the mask-wearing (thanks to Dany Roja) Van Dame, also has his best game by saving shot after shot, which helps both Jamie and the team. When Jamie is tackled really badly right during the end of the game with Richmond still 1-0 up, he goes down and leaves the field for immediate treatment.
Coach Ted makes an audacious decision of not replacing his star player and playing with ten men for a minute or two. Jamie does come back on the field and seals the game with an incredible solo goal which does give flashbacks of Leo Messi’s 2007 goal against Getafe. From not being able to score a goal for many matches earlier this season to scoring in the most essential game for his team, Jamie Tartt has come a long way. This is really the greatest comeback in the show. Whether or not Richmond manages to win the league next week, Jamie Tartt remains a hero.
After the game, Ted Is elated to get a stamp of approval from none other than Pep Guardiola (in flesh and blood, that was really him). Coach Pep tells Ted that all that matters is how you are playing, winning or losing is secondary- echoing the philosophy that has won the man everything in the real world. Not to mention, Jamie Tartt also gets a hug from his former coach. Tartt also receives huge appreciation from the Manchester City crowd at the end, and we get a glimpse of his father as well, whose face says it all.
Why does Coach Beard forgive Nate?
For me, this is the highlight of this episode. Now that Jamie’s redemption arc is done, it is time for Nathan Shelly to have his crack at it. Thanks to his supportive girlfriend, Nate gets fired from his short-lived waitroning job- which is only for his own good, of course. While in the course of writing a sixty-page apology letter to Ted, Nate’s doorbell rings, and he is frozen to find Beard at the door. Nate, being the sweetest possible man he is, asks Beard to do whatever he has in mind- which is definitely not good.
But Beard tells a story. Once upon a time, he and Ted were inseparable friends until they drifted apart. Ted got into coaching, while Beard got into a dark path and ended up in prison. After getting out of prison, with no money, no friends, or no family, Beard went to Ted, who took him in instantly. Beard still couldn’t help but to steal Ted’s car, but Ted still didn’t give Beard away. It took us this long to know the story of Coach Beard, and it came at the right possible moment. Of course, the reason for bringing this up is Beard giving Nate a second chance; as Ted once gave him.
The two of them hug, and we get inches closer to get all our Diamond dogs back together. Until next week…
Actually, there’s more.
# In Jamie’s room, there is a poster of a Young Roy. According to his stepdad, many have come and gone, but the Roy poster remained a constant. Just how many reasons are we gonna get to love Jamie Tartt? By the way, did you all notice the Keeley poster as well, which- well, I would rather not say!
# The night before the Manchester City game, Ted screened You’ve Got Mail for the team, which was a rousing success. During that, we can’t help but notice Rebecca, the boss, and our very own Sam Obisania.
# Roy and Keeley are still not back together. Roy wants to, but Keeley is not there yet. Makes sense to me. Meanwhile, Roy and Barbara should interact more; just saying.
# Rebecca gets a surprise visit from Bex, which has to be something about Rupert.
# We get to know about this very unique tradition of Rebecca dropping a truth bomb kind of thing right at the end of each season. This time, however, Rebecca confesses to Ted that she actually doesn’t have any. But as a matter of fact, Ted has something. I’m sure we will find that out next week.