It’s been a week since Lights’ big comeback win against El Diablo and he’s all fired up for a now confirmed fight in ten weeks against Death Row Reynolds. But things aren’t so bright and sunny after Pops dropped a bomb on Lights when he decided to no longer continue training him if he was going to go through with the Reynolds fight. Lights is now in desperate need of a new trainer before the fight, and his search will lead him to a possibly unstable man who is hell bent on changing everything about Lights that Pops has built over the years.

Review: “You ever seen Death Row Reynolds scared before? Your gonna see him scared the night of the fight.”

This is without a doubt the most well written episode of the season. Right from the get go, we get a real heart to heart moment with Pops and Lights. Stacy Keach delivers his Emmy worthy dialogue like the pro that he is. And I’ll be honest, I almost teared up a bit in the moment when he said he felt more like a father than a trainer, it was such a beautiful scene.

But that wasn’t the only one. The scene that took place between Lights and Romeo on the roof of the gym was the best scene of the series thus far. Not so much for its writing (though it certainly didn’t hurt), but the scene was truly paying homage to the shows biggest influence, Rocky. The camera spins as Lights throws punches at nothing, revealing the beauty of Bayonne, it’s a moment that resonates not only with sports fans, but drama fans in general.

And speaking of Ed Romeo, I really can’t wait to see more of him. He seems to be one of those great supporting characters that changes your entire perspective of the hero. And since Romeo’s goal is to change the way Lights thinks and fights in the ring, I have a feeling I am not too far off with that assumption.

And that scene at the end told me way more about Romeo than I ever thought I would get in this episode. I got the message that he was a damaged soul during his conversation with Theresa, but those scars from a clear suicide attempt are beyond over kill. They don’t just run from his wrist to palm. They run from his elbow to palm. Folks, that is not the sign of a man seeking attention, that is the sign of a man who is probably beyond repair. It’s a bit scary, and that’s why I love it.

Hopefully, Romeo will be able to further the separation of Lights from his family, which if the last three weeks have shown us anything, it’s that the less time Lights is around his family the better off he is. The show is better written, better acted, and better paced when he isn’t being dragged down by the people, as Romeo would put it, sucking at his tits.

Final thoughts: Best episode of the season.

Episode: “Head Games” (Season 1, Episode 8)

Airs: FX, Tuesdays, 10pm

What’s next: Lights’ allegiance to a new boxing mentor threatens to tear his family apart.

To listen to the latest episode of Merrill’s TV Podcast, The Idiot Boxers with Kevin Carr, head over to Fat Guys at the Movies.


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