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All American - Hard Knock Life - Review

All American delivered another emotional episode this week with "Hard Knock Life". Characters are starting to deal with their problems and try to move on, and there's a lot to unpack here. So let's get started.

This week Beverly and Crenshaw face each other in a scrimmage. Raise your hand if you thought this would go over well. That's what I thought. Crenshaw and Beverly already have issues which are made worse by the booster and his camera crew. Scrimmages are supposed to be less intense than games but not in this case. The refs let things slide and this game gets out of control quickly. Luckily, Spencer decides to put a stop to it and takes a knee. Darnell kneels with Spencer on the field. This was a powerful moment in which two men decided to put their differences aside for something bigger than football.

Spencer and Darnell, along with Billy, Grace, and Dillon, gather to try to figure out why Corey left. Grace points out that he had cancer in college but he beat it. This leads Darnell to remember that Corey went to Arizona last year to get treatment. So his cancer is back for the third time. I felt so bad for everyone here. Corey had just began to get his family back and now he's dying. I really wish he hadn't left, but at least we understand why. I don't know if I'm emotionally prepared to watch Spencer lose his father.

Jordan also struggled with the news that he's going to be a father. At first he tries to blow Simone off, but after talking with Olivia he realizes that he needs to be there for the mother of his child. I liked that his mom drove him to meet Simone, and that he's trying to make amends with Laura. I also like that Olivia and Jordan had some scenes together this week as I've missed their brother/sister relationship. He's been kind of a jerk lately, and I'm glad to see he's maturing.

Moving on to Olivia. She confided to Jordan that she kissed Asher, and she admits she likes him. Jordan understands why she's hesitant as she was in a bad place the last time. Jordan actually reacted better to the news about Asher and Olivia than I thought he would, and you can tell he worries about his sister's sobriety.

Olivia has second thoughts about being with Asher. She gets so upset about her issues and not having anyone to talk to she has to call her sponsor because she wants to drink. At the end of the episode she confides to Asher about wanting to drink, and he tells her that she can always talk to him. She doesn't want to lose her best friend, and he doesn't, either. So they decide to stay friends for now.

I'm not giving up on Asher and Olivia. She does like him but is scared of losing one of the few people who is there for her and who she can talk to about her addiction. She just needs more time to figure out her feelings. I'm also so proud of Asher. He obviously wants to be with Olivia, but he put his feelings aside because it's what she needs right now. He's not going anywhere and will still be there when she does decide she wants to be in a relationship with him. This might be the healthiest relationship I've seen on television in a while.

Layla seems to be making some progress with her mental health. She is going to therapy and her dad really does seem determined to stay and help. She is definitely still struggling though, but that's realistic. If you have depression or another mental illness you don't get better overnight. All American has done a good job of making this story realistic.

I like Layla and Coop's friendship. Can we have more of that? But I was also disappointed in Coop this week. I know she was hurt, but I wish she had told Patience about what Layla’s dad said. Hopefully Coop will be honest next week.

It also seems that Billy and Laura may be making progress, too. I understand why Laura is still angry, but I hope they can work out their issues. I want them to make it. And it's better for Jordan and Olivia if their parents are at least on the same page with each other.

Other Thoughts:

- I am so sick of this booster. He has done nothing but cause problems for everyone at Beverly. The best part about him is his daughter and after this week even she seems annoyed by him. He can leave town anytime he wants.

- I've read some theories about why Asher's mom is back and what her secret is, and I have my own thoughts. I think she's struggled with some sort of addiction or depression of her own. I don't think she had an affair. What do you all think?

- The hug between Asher and Olivia was so sweet. Olivia just deserves to be happy, and I’m always upset when she’s hurting. I hope she's not heading for a relapse.

What did you think of "Hard Knock Life"? I would love to hear your thoughts!


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