random brain dribbles of a nurse, novelist, and ninja enthusiast

“Clear eyes, full stomach,” or Why Friday Night Lights Was The Whore Of Applebee’s

Food and football pimpin’ at its finest!

Several months ago my wife and I were obsessed with the show Friday Night Lights. Thanks to Netflix, we completed all five seasons in less than one month of continuous exposure, resulting in some significant muscle loss and a couple pressure ulcers between us. By the fifth season it was clear the show was less about football and more about ‘eating good in the neighborhood’.

There was a shameless tapestry of Applebee’s ladened, trampy commercialism weaved through every second of the show. It should be called, Applebee’s and oblong shaped balls, plus other stuff. I’m assuming everyone is familiar with football, but for those unfamiliar with the Applebee’s restaurant chain, please feel free to watch the five season long documentary Friday Night Lights about it or utilize my simple guide below.

Applebee’s: A Guide

Applebee’s is a restaurant chain designed to attract large families during the day and loud and obnoxious teenagers who should probably not be drinking between the hours of eight and closing. They attract this crowd, because they are across from every major mall or shopping complex in America. If you can’t find an Applebee’s, simply Google search for your nearest mall or shopping complex and you will surely be directed right to one.

Even now as I write this, there are two located within thirty minutes of me at two separate malls also located within thirty minutes of me (this is not coincidence). Their food is delicious and their service is excellent which I am either saying because of hours worth of subliminal and direct messages fed into every major synapse of my brain following five seasons worth of Friday Night Lights or because it is actually true. I’ll let you decide.

Warning: If you have not watched Friday Night Lights there may be some spoilers!

Applebee’s, All The Cool Kid’s Are Doing It!

One of the first things the show taught me was just how cool the local Applebee’s really was. The very first episode of season one begins with Matt and his friend Landry eating at the local Applebee’s where the two gaze longingly both at the celebrity status of the football players enjoying fine Applebee’s cuisine at the tables surrounding them and the lovely waitress Tyra Collete, who works there through most of the series. They would later find all their football dreams come to fruition towards the end of the season as they found themselves being celebrated at that very same Applebee’s.

Take home: if you want to be popular, just eat at Applebee’s.

All this time, I thought my frail, pasty white exterior, and interest in all things uncool had resulted in my complete absence on any level of the social strata comprising my high school alma mater, but now I know it was due to the inaccessibility of the local Applebee’s.

It's not me, It's Applebee's!

It’s not me, It’s Applebee’s!

Clearly, the photo above, with me plus 1950’s skateboard and full body armor on top of torn sports sweater has provided you with a significant amount of evidence to justify how cool I was in school, thus alleviating any other outside factors other than Applebee’s as the deterrent of my instant high school celebrity.

During the show Applebee’s ever present powers at escalating the towns teenagers to instant celebrity status could be witnessed through all the popular high school football players celebrating at their restaurant or because all the coolest high school kids also worked there. Both Tyra Collette (resident town hottie) and Julie Taylor (coaches daughter) worked at this facility during the series and every major celebration, including their first major win of the series, has either begun or ended at the local Applebee’s.

Applebee’s, It’s Always Open For Business!

I have yet to personally witness any major business interactions taking place within an Applebee’s franchise (do pot deals count?). Despite this knowledge, every major business interaction within Friday Night Lights seems to occur inside the walls of the local Applebee’s restaurant.

Do you want fries with that corporate takeover?

Do you want fries with that corporate takeover?

Applebee’s, It Can Fix Your Family And Find You Romance!

Are you having trouble connecting with your son, daughter, or wife, and want to gain a deeper understanding of what they’re going through? Why just take them to Applebee’s! By the time we get to season three some very powerful family dynamics and relationships among cast members have begun to shift. In the preceding seasons, Julie and Matt have broken up, Buddy Garrity and his daughter Lyla are estranged, and Matt is still trying to figure out what to do with his aging grandmother and both my wife and I were extremely hungry. But don’t worry, all of these will be solved by Applebee’s.

The very beginning of episode two in season three finds Matt reintroduced to Julie who sparks a conversation with him revolving around her new employment within the Applebee’s franchise and by seasons end, the two have rekindled their romance to the delight and enjoyment of everyone watching.

After a scandalous affair, Buddy Garrity takes his daughter Lyla out to eat at the local Applebee’s in the hopes of rekindling their father daughter relationship and within mere moments the two are enjoying both the delicious meat on their table and each others company.

After pensively consuming fries with his grandmother during a meal at Applebee’s, several more thought provoking drives with gratuitously placed neon Applebee’s signs would later reunite him with his real mother who begins to assume the caretaker role.

Several commercials later find my wife and I enjoying beer cheese bread and wanton tacos, after driving to our own nearby Applebee’s, where our unborn baby will be fed, and we will gain the strength necessary to continue watching the remaining two seasons of Friday Night Lights! 

Thank you Applebee’s! 

In Conclusion

For those of you who feel my statements regarding Applebee’s may be a tad bit unfair, I provide you with this sample dialogue from the third season of the show between characters Landry Clarke and Tyra Collette as he assists her in writing her college essay:

Landry: Can you explain why every paragraph has to tie back into Applebee’s?

Tyra: Cause I use it as a metaphor! It works.

Tyra continues: Also, the food there is super delicious and everyone who works at Applebee’s is super awesome due to their amazing benefits package and all around excellent health care plan.

Okay, that last line I just made up, but I think Landry’s original question warrants an immediate answer by those whose Friday Night Lights experience was tainted by Applebee’s. Why is every paragraph tied back into Applebee’s?

2 Responses to ““Clear eyes, full stomach,” or Why Friday Night Lights Was The Whore Of Applebee’s”

  1. kylemarcellus

    I find this hilarious because we seriously used to go to Applebee’s every Friday night after football games in high school. Now after 10 years I still have friends that suggest going there. I always laugh at their suggestions!

    Reply
  2. josefkul

    I wouldn’t recommend going there after eight. I made that mistake with some old high school friends of mine recently and wanted to punch everyone in the face. Apparently, there was some sort of prom, because the place was littered with pimple faced teenagers who felt the need to yell at the top of their lungs to everyone else at their table. Still, anytime between the hours of morning to seven will be fine. Was one of your friends Matt Saracen or Smash Williams, because I would really like their autographs.

    Reply

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