Ted Lasso’s topsy-turvy, sometimes glorious, sometimes frustrating second season has come to an end. The hot takes have already started pouring in (and I’m excited to very soon join the ranks of the hot takers!), but overlooked in the scrum is a kind of still-important plot point: namely, Trent Crimm’s article about Coach Lasso and the real reason for his FA Cup quarterfinal sideline departure.
The article was the reason for the huge reveal at the end of “Midnight Train to Royston.” Trent, texting Ted out of (pretty much) nowhere at the episode’s end, showed him the just-published article, which relied on an anonymous source for its claim. Trent explained that he respected Ted too much to keep his source anonymous: it was, of course, Nate the Grey.
The following week was a delightful cavalcade of takes over whether Trent was justified in pulling the veil back from Nate’s identity (he totally was) and whether Trent could do so without facing serious consequences. As it turned out, though, Trent was ***SPOILERS IN CASE YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE FINALE YET, OH-EM-GEE*** fired from his job at the Independent after telling his editors himself that he’d broken anonymity. It was kind of a strange move, one Ted Lasso’s writers justified by having Trent explain that he was looking for something more than just journalism.
But so then all of this overlooks today’s key question: What does Trent Crimm’s article about Ted actually say?
Well, we can actually answer that question, thanks to some well-placed shots and screengrabs from “Inverting the Pyramid of Success,” the Season 2 finale. Ted, never one to shy away from a problem, is reading Trent’s article — itself front-page news — over his morning breakfast. It serves as a poignant resting place for his phone, on which he’s just gotten a series of comforting messages from Rebecca, Dr. Sharon, and his ex-wife Michelle. (It probably goes without saying that Ted’s son Henry is never far from his mind, a fact reinforced by the photo of Henry that serves as his phone’s wallpaper. But then I never pass up the chance to say something about Ted Lasso, so there that is and on we go.)
However, there are just a handful of frames before Ted places his phone atop the paper where Trent Crimm’s article is 99% visible.
From those two shots, plus the shot of Coach Beard confronting Nate a few minutes later, we can piece together what the article says. The headline is “Richmond coach cover-up revealed.” The subhead is “Lasso reported to have left the pitch due to food poisoning, now sources claim panic attack was reason behind exit.” And the author is, of course, one Trent Crimm, formerly of The Independent, now just good old independent.
Here’s the extent of Trent’s article from A1:
The reason Coach Ted Lasso left his pitch side post during the A.F.C. Richmond vs. Tottenham Hotspur game was due to a severe panic attack, rather than food poisoning, The Everyday Independent can exclusively reveal.
Coach Lasso had previously claimed it was a “dodgy prawn” which caused him to rush off the pitch last week, in front of thousands of fans, but an anonymous source told the Everyday Independent that Lasso was in fact suffering from a sudden and overwhelming panic.
During his relatively short time at A.F.C. Richmond, Coach Lasso has already been the subject of intense scrutiny, both in his professional and personal life. This may go some way towards explaining why he chose to cover up this anxiety attack rather than coming forwards about his struggle with mental health. Several of his colleagues at the club have already voiced their support for Coach Lasso on social media, as well as asking the press to handle the matter with sensitivity and in a way that respects their coach’s privacy.
Much more must be done on and off the pitch to check players and managers in these cases, are suitably trained to spot the signs of mental health and deal with this appropriately. The rate of male suicide has taken a dramatic rise over the last years and must be taken seriously. The need to encourage players to be more open about depression and mental health issues has never been more […].
Another paragraph starts after that line, but, because of the angle of the newspaper in the shot, all we can make out is the word “The.” And there’s clearly more to Trent’s article on the inside pages, but we never see those.
It’s worth pointing out, though, that while some Ted Lasso viewers raked Trent over the coals for writing the story at all, he moves very quickly on from Ted’s panic attack to both the context that likely led to a decline in Ted’s mental health and the topic of mental health awareness in general. In fact, Trent Crimm’s article features almost embarrassingly little about Ted, and no gossipy, tabloid-esque speculation as to what might be going on in his personal life, or any shitty speculation from the anonymous source.
(That last is more a reflection of the nature of tabloids than on Nate. Given his increasingly shitty attitude the last few episodes, though, it’s not hard to imagine him whining and talking nonsense about Ted to Trent, and Trent then rolling his eyes and sticking to pretty much just the facts.)
Trent’s article isn’t just front-page news in the Everyday Independent, either. It seems all of London has gone Richmond-mad thanks to this particular story. On his walk to Richmond’s training pitch, Ted passes a different newspaper for which he’s the cover story:
There’s that punchy British rhyming headline tendency we all learned so much about back in Season 1. While the name of the paper is never made clear, the layout of the front page, the fact that it’s a tabloid, and the choice of font all suggest it’s the infamous (and infamously tawdry) Daily Star.
And we get one other headline & unflattering photo of Ted, this time from Nation’s Star Sport: “Is Ted Dead In The Head: Panic attack on the pitch for Richmond’s Lasso.”
It seems safe to assume that the tone of the latter two articles is, let’s say, rather less respectful than the one Trent wrote. But by the end of the finale, Richmond has ***ANOTHER SPOLIER ALERT OH MY GOD GO WATCH THE EPISODE ALREADY*** won promotion back to the Premier League, celebrations abound, and Ted has given a press conference in which he addresses his own mental health. He does so off-camera, though — the omission was a sour note in an otherwise sweet and wonderful episode-bouquet. (Epiquet? Boupisode? Gonna go with “epiquet.” It rhymes perfectly with “sobriquette” & a quick rhyme always comes in handy. Just ask the British tabloids!)
Hopefully, mental health doesn’t get pushed aside when the third season of Ted Lasso drops next year. Dr. Sharon is coming back, and it sounds like Trent is going to literally write the book on Ted — stay tuned.
Want more Ted Lasso? Jump over to our Ted Lasso Show Spotlight to see more Ted Lasso coverage.