This All American review contains spoilers for Season 3, Episode 3.
What All American does really well is bridge real moments and real feelings together with their characters. In my last review, I mentioned how we don’t often see male TV characters exploring their mental health on screen. In this week’s episode, “High Expectations,” Layla (Greta Onieogou) and Spencer (Daniel Ezra) discuss the option of Spencer trying out therapy, in particular a therapist who specializes in people in sports. It’s a powerful moment, and I love how Spencer is open to the idea of trying out therapy. I really hope we see more of this mental health journey explored in the coming episodes. Pop culture is one of the ways we can slowly break those barriers, not to mention the exploration of a character’s mental health allows them to discover more of themselves.
In conclusion: Mental health is important, everyone.
Bad idea with good intentions? We’ve heard that before and we’ve seen some of those moments in this episode. That disaster of a double date…can we just erase that from our minds? Because it was so very awkward. It’s easy to see where Layla is coming from in trying to get Jordan (Michael Evans Behling) and Spencer in the same room, but I think the best way to get these guys to make-up and be buddies again is if they do it at their own pace. It’s clear that Spencer is trying, but Jordan is feeling petty and I guess he needs more time.
Another moment in which a character acted on a bad idea with good intentions is the whole thing between Asher (Cody Christian)/Olivia (Samantha Logan)/Vanessa (Alondra Delgado). Asher has come a long way from Season 1, even when he seemed like he wouldn’t be redeemable. But, I feel like he’s kind of losing his credentials right about now with the way he’s handling this awkward situation with Olivia and Vanessa. An emotional affair can feel worse than a physical one and is just as necessary to address. The way Asher brushes it off to make it seem like it was nothing is not cool. But Oliva doesn’t seem to make it a big deal, which comes to show that maybe she’s being nonchalant about it because she too has secrets of her own, which even Vanessa suspected.
Is Olivia feeling guilty about what happened in Vegas that she’s taking this thing with Asher lightly? Does she want him to find a way to end it before she has to in order to feel slightly better? Ah, just gimme the secrets. Something went down in Vegas, something wild and I need answers. As viewers, we’re already starting to put the pieces together. The slow-burn of Olivia and Spencer’s chemistry is too strong to look away from. Spencer confides in Olivia more than he does Layla, that’s already clear as day. To be honest, I’m over the whole “they’re like family” statement. They had an instant connection the moment Spencer arrived in Beverly in Season 1 and it’s been nothing but great vibes between them, and not to mention, they have trauma they both endured together last season with that shooting. Trauma changes you and it changes something in you and the person that witnessed it together. These two are like magnets, the attraction just keeps on growing and I can’t seem to stop talking about them.
Speaking of answers — what is Mo (Erica Peebles) up to? Even Coop (Bre-Z) can’t seem to figure it out. We find out that Mo convinced the person who shot Spencer last season to turn himself in, but the question is: Why? What are her motives? She can’t just ease her way back to town like that without some kind of agenda—no matter how many times she shuts down that idea, there has to be more than what she’s giving.
I know we haven’t seen D’Angelo (Lamon Archey) in this episode and he’s supposed to be the villain this season but his ways seem less terrorizing and intriguing compared to Mo, because I think she’ll end up causing more havoc in South Crenshaw.
I wanna know what was in that sandwich that was made after Spencer. The town loves him!
I thought they came to reveal Darnell’s (Da’Vinchi) mom passed away in service. I hope whatever happened to her doesn’t lead to that.
What does Vanessa want? Does she want Asher fully or does she wanna make friends, first?
How come Simone (Geffri Maya) and Jordan have not shared a single scene together so far?