Our time in Duffy, Georgia, has come to an end, but hopefully just for now.
The Heels season finale both wrapped nicely, but also left a lot of loose ends that a second season could easily tie-up. As of this writing, Heels hasn’t been renewed for a new season.
I assumed this episode would open up right where the previous one left off, with FWD’s Charlie Gully asking for anyone to try and get Jack after he knocked Gully’s teeth out in his ring, but instead we got another flashback of a young Jack and Ace with their father Tom. Ace was, as little brothers do, annoying Jack and after Jack put his younger brother in a hold, Tom intervened and taught Jack a lesson—in the form of wrestling. He said that Ace “isn’t his.”Flash-forward to the FWD show and Jack and Ace barely escaped the chase from security and FWD wrestlers.
I thought the flashback was a good, unexpected move. It was a great display of the parallels of Jack’s possessiveness.
The two argued in the car on the way home, and Jack tells Ace he’s winning the DWL title and turning babyface at the fair, but Ace asked if he planted the kleenex but Jack blows him off. Gully is in his dressing room with Rooster and other FWD talent. Rooster tells him he needed to return the favor at the State Fair, but did it through beating Jack at his own game. This set up the episode’s climax.
Jack went home to find that Staci had discovered the Kleenex; she’d gone to stay at her friend Courtney’s house. Crystal is told that she shouldn’t have quit the DWL, then Wild Bill later asked her to be his valet, which she accepted.
In the first episode, Ace was an asshole to a convenience store clerk, but here he apologized to her and got her free tickets to the fair as part of his real-life babyface turn. We also found that Diego had been supplying Wild Bill with pills but Bill needs some harder stuff.
Ace tells his mother, Carol, that he’d be winning the belt, but she wasn’t all that thrilled, given her relationship to wrestling and its part in her husband taking his own life. She would later watch the show on her iPad from home, though.
Jack and Staci have a big talk outside Courtney’s house and really get everything off their chest. Staci tells Jack to be honest with Ace about the Kleenex, Jack tells Staci why he’s doing what he’s doing and why he is so protective of his immature younger brother. This was even satisfying for me to watch. Communication, communication, communication.
We get a locker room reunion with the whole gang, Crystal, Big Jim even Ricky Rabies! Everyone is at the big arena for the state fair. You can see in Crystal’s eyes that she doesn’t want to be a valet. Jack gives one of those Captain America speeches before the big show, a real tear-jerker, while Staci is getting ready to perform the national anthem at the nearby rodeo event. This was a great little montage. Jack’s speeches have been great; this was one of the areas that both Amell as an actor and Waldron as a writer thrive.
My favorite part of this episode was the needle drop on Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Run Through the Jungle,” as Wild Bill was making his entrance for the main event. Whomever had that idea deserves a bonus. All the while, Staci was knocking the National Anthem out of the park, and Jack couldn’t watch it even though he really wanted to.
We got the big three-way ladder match, but Bill, who’s taken some of the “harder stuff” has defecated in his pants and has to play dead on the apron to avoid humiliation. Never a dull moment with Wild Bill.
Ace and Jack have to finish the match on their own and atop the ladder is where it all goes down. Gully and his cronies, who are in the crowd, start a “Jack! Jack! Jack!” chant, hijacking the show and ruining the Ace heel turn, and throw Kleenex at the two brothers. This is where Jack confessed to planting Kleenex the first time, and the two then fought for real in the ring. Gully tried to rush the ring but Bill, with shit in his pants, got up and stopped him. Then Crystal got involved in the match, and they changed the finish on the fly, and she climbed down the ladder to win.
It was a great, wholesome ending. Crystal is one of the true babyfaces of the show, but from a wrestling standpoint, this doesn’t make sense. Crystal was never involved in the match. This would be like doing Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar in a ladder match but Paul Heyman won the title. I’m sure most non-fans who watched wouldn’t even care, being caught up in the elation of Crystal getting the big win, but I couldn’t help but think about this.
With that being said, I did truly enjoy Heels. It had stellar performances all around by the cast, fantastic writing, and I think one of the underrated things this show does is it helps de-stigmatize wrestling. I hope we get a second season because there’s been a lot left on the table. I hope a bigger station picks it up. This could easily be on something like FX alongside great shows like Reservation Dogs or What We Do In The Shadows.