“Friday Night Lights” is the most genuinely bipartisan piece of art American mass culture has produced in the last decade. It’s a Texas-set ode to the importance, integrity and strength of the hetero-normative family and community do-it-yourself-ism that’s also a paean to public schools and public servants and the safety nets they provide for the young and underprivileged. Coach Eric Taylor is a great man, but who could say if he votes Republican or Democrat? Depending on your political persuasion it’s possible to read “FNL” as a “red” or “blue” series — to extract the message you want out of it, to ascribe your preferences to its characters — but not because it is one or the other. Rather, it is truly both red and blue, deeply respectful of all of its characters, however one imagines they would vote.
James Poniewozik agrees along similar lines. While the author of book that inspired the series, Buzz Bissinger, recently endorsed Romney, the show’s creator, Peter Berg, penned a sharply-worded letter to Romney expressing his displeasure that the candidate co-opted his slogan.