I loved the Ted Lasso finale — but it feels incomplete

(L to R) Brett Goldstein (as Roy Kent), Jason Sudeikis (as Ted Lasso) and Brendan Hunt (as Coach Beard) in Ted Lasso season 3
(Image credit: Apple)

When I finished the Ted Lasso season 3 finale — which could very well be the series finale because nobody's announced Ted Lasso season 4 — this morning, I was full of emotion. That's nothing unusual, as Ted Lasso is the kind of series that always generates feels. 

The thing is, for as positive as I was about this finale, my brain couldn't stop wondering "what if?" about scenes I believe were either never made, or left on the cutting room floor. And this is why I've started to hope we get a Ted Lasso finale director's cut soon. While the series has been wrapped with a very pleasant bow, this ending left out certain scenes that one would expect to see. 

After the spoiler warning, I'll explain all why this Ted Lasso finale works, and the few things it could have used to be an even better exit. Congrats to the Apple TV Plus team, though, this one was a winner.

An image indicating spoilers are ahead.

Ted Lasso's finale teased a huge hookup that didn't happen

(L, R) Juno Temple as Keeley Jones and Hannah Waddingham as Rebecca Welton in Ted Lasso season 3 episode 10 "International Break"

(Image credit: Apple)

I am thanking the TV gods that Ted Lasso didn't deliver on the wishes of some fans. Search the phrase 'TedBecca' online, and you'll find that some viewers who have been pining for Ted (Jason Sudeikis) and Rebecca (Hannah Waddingham) to be a thing.

So, when a rumpled Ted greeted Rebecca in her kitchen in the morning, I'm sure the TedBecca believers were screaming in jubilation. There was a tension in the air, as Ted asked if Rebecca wanted to "talk about it" — and she did not. 

Otherwise, it looks like all wink and no plot.

Fortunately for the rest of us who don't need every pair of colleagues eventually hooked up, that delayed discussion is actually about Ted leaving Richmond. To create more confusion, a barely-dressed Beard (Brendan Hunt) and a besuited Jane (Phoebe Walsh) walked in — and we learned they all spent the night at Rebecca's.

Clearly, the Ted Lasso writers wanted to wink at the TedBecca fandom, but it turned out that the gang had some wild night together. I'm OK with the little wink, but I really would have loved a scene about that night. Either as a flashback or something else. Because, otherwise, it looks like all wink and no plot.

This brings me to my other gripe ...

Ted Lasso's goodbye felt half-finished

Jason Sudeikis as Ted Lasso in Ted Lasso season 3 episode 11

(Image credit: Apple TV+)

Yes, the AFC Richmond team sent Ted off in proper fashion, both with a huge win and a performance "So Long, Farewell" from The Sound of Music. But we never actually got to see Ted tell his football family he was leaving.

The same is true for the conversation that was cut off as the penultimate episode ended, when Ted told Rebecca he had big news for her. I don't know why you leave those conversations out, and his farewell talks to the team later in the episode were not enough of a substitute.

This is a group of characters who wear their emotions on their sleeves, which would have made those announcement scenes amazing.

There must have been looks of surprise or understanding up and down the rooms, and those would have truly helped this finale feel more monumental. While it's not hard to assume the Ted Lasso folks probably felt like they were at their limits with a 79 minute finale — remember when Ted Lasso episodes were half an hour? — one more scene that combined both announcements would have been excellent. 

This is a group of characters who wear their emotions on their sleeves, which would have made those scenes amazing. What's another few minutes, anyway?

Outlook: Ted Lasso's finale was predictable, and that's great

(L to R) Brett Goldstein as Roy Kent, Jason Sudeikis as Ted Lasso, and Brendan Hunt as Coach Beard in Ted Lasso season 3

(Image credit: Apple TV+)

In my Ted Lasso finale preview, I confidently predicted Ted going back to the Unites States and Richmond beating West Ham (though I thought it would seal a bigger victory, damn Man City). And I almost declared that Keeley would refuse to choose between Roy and Jamie, and push them both away. I even wrote it before erasing it. 

All of that happened, with almost no other surprises, but it wasn't a downer. While Ted Lasso's third season had weird decisions — Rebecca and Keeley deserved more, and Nate's redemption felt as clumsy as Jade felt undeveloped —  all of its characters finished the season as you'd have expected. 

Ted Lasso gave all the right results. It the end, it was utterly — as Rebecca's Dutch gentleman would say — gezellig.

Those characters acting true to form and not surprising us for the sake of finale twists, gave us fantastic moments, such as Nate sobbing on Ted's shoulder as he finally apologized and Roy begrudgingly asking to become a 'Diamond Dog.' I was only moderately confused about how Ted was so calm when West Ham temporarily went up 3-2. 

Yes, he's grown smart enough about the game to have seen an offsides his whole team missed, but how were Ted's nerves not acting up? A friend suggests that's because of the peace he found with his decision to go home, which reminds me how much I would have liked to have hear him make said decision aloud. 

Also, Ted Lasso pulled off the surprising trick of giving everyone happy endings, without having it feel forced. Aside from if you (like Rebecca) wanted Ted to stay in England, Ted Lasso delivered all the right results. In the end, it was completely — as Rebecca's Dutch gentleman would say — gezellig.

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Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.