Post Mortems

Ted Lasso's Hannah Waddingham and Toheeb Jimoh on Rebecca and Sam's Season 3 Relationship — and Potential Significance of the Green Matchbook

A trip to Deborah’s psychic throws Rebecca off her axis during Wednesday’s Ted Lasso.

Alleged clairvoyant Tish initially has three visions about Rebecca’s future: The first involves a green matchbook; the second is a “shite in nining armor,” presumably a knight in shining armor; and the third involves thunder, lightning and an upside-down (and drenched) Rebecca.

Ted Lasso Season 3, Episode 3It’s a lot to take in, and Rebecca’s not buying any of it. But just as she’s about to leave, Tish blurts out a fourth prophecy:  “You will have a family,” she says. More specifically, “you’re going to be a mother.”

Rebecca, as we know, has always wanted to be a mom. In Season 1, she was devastated when Rupert told her that Bex was pregnant — not because she was jealous, but because Rupert always told her that he didn’t want a child, preventing her from having one of her own for the duration of their marriage. Alas, to hear this potential fraud infer something of such importance to her rubs her the wrong way.

“I had no knowledge in Season 1 — when I signed up for it — I had no knowledge about the whole baby thing, and [series co-creator] Jason [Sudeikis] and I had never spoken about it,” Hannah Waddingham tells TVLine. And yet, she had a hunch that Rebecca felt like she was missing out on having a family. “So when that all came up, and Rupert basically saying ‘I just didn’t want to have a child with you,’ that hit me so hard because I thought, of all the things I could’ve chosen, without ever speaking to any of the creatives about it, that was my sticking point with her. That’s where all her sadness and darkness and desperation [comes from],” and it’s what “would make her act so extreme.”

Even still, Rebecca thinks everything that Tish has said is rubbish. It’s not until she attends the soft opening of Sam’s new restaurant Ola’s, where Sam hands out little green matchbooks, that Rebecca starts to wonder: Is Mom’s psychic the real deal?

“It makes her spin out because she thinks that that woman is a quack,” Waddingham says. “She’s really not down with [the idea of] a psychic at all, but when things are presented to you — and she is somebody for tangible proof and fact — when those things are coming at you, she has no choice but to embrace because it’s being slapped around her face.”

Ted Lasso Season 3, Episode 3The audience is also left to wonder whether the green matchbook suggests that Sam is Rebecca’s “shite in nining armor” — a question we took directly to portrayer Toheeb Jimoh….

“Hmm… I’m not sure,” he answers, choosing his words very carefully. “I think I’ll leave that up to audiences to decide. All I will say is, the most important thing about the two of them is that they care about each other. That is the core of their relationship, and they will never not have what they had in Season 2. That romance will always be a part of them. It’s their shared experience, you know? They can never go back from that. But for the most part, they just care about each other and they want each other to be happy, and that’s the most important thing, so we will see.”

In the meantime, Sam’s a bit preoccupied with his restaurant. Episode 3 introduces his head chef, a woman whose name we have not yet learned. His connection to her, and to the Nigerian restaurant, factors “massively” into his Season 3 arc.

“He spends a lot more time there, and a lot more time with the people in the restaurant,” Jimoh says. “He’s got this side business going on, and this restaurant is going to become emblematic of him and his relationship with the country — his relationship with fellow members of his culture. There are loads of Nigerians in this restaurant, and I can’t wait for audiences to see how that stuff plays out.”

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