You can bet your biscuits (English ones, of course) that “Ted Lasso” has more fancy footwork in store for its now-airing second season on AppleTV+. But how about a nostalgic reminder of AFC Richmond’s humble beginnings under their beatific new coach (Jason Sudeikis)?
In this visual and aural breakdown, the Emmy-nominated sound team weighs in on all aspects of the culminating match of the final Season 1 episode, and why just the right “whooshes” and “rumbles” are essential to a solid end product.
FULL MIX CLIP
Brent Findley (Supervising Sound Editor): The full mix of this clip shows us what a rollercoaster ride the stories of “Ted Lasso” can be. Selling this emotional journey is a team effort. There isn’t any one component of the edit or mix that can do it by itself. It takes a push and pull from all elements: try the music louder here, try the design louder there; maybe mute the dialog altogether in a spot or play only breathing. Sometimes, it’s the absence of diegetic sound that is the most powerful. It took over 800 tracks to bring this to life.
Sean Byrne (Effects Re-recording Mixer): Crowds are always a challenge to mix. They need to be loud and realistic, without stepping on the most important things: the dialogue and music. Several different crowd perspectives were mixed in with different panning to achieve the feel of the stadium. I was able to punch up the ball flights, not only with whooshes, but with rumbles. Dani’s [Cristo Fernandez] kick has a jet by, which is fast and exciting, while Jamie’s [Phil Dunster] kick is dark and full of rumble, followed by a rolling thunder, a dark day. If you listen closely, there’s moments of silence between effects to accentuate the impact of the next effect. Without those, it would all mush together and have less of a punch.
Sanaa Kelley (Foley Artist): The games were always a challenge. We had to make sure the footsteps sounded dynamic and not mushy. We used a variety of techniques to make the grass have different tones. We would walk or run one of the characters on Easter grass, another character would be on quarter-inch tape, yet another on synthetic grass, as well as sod. The ball kicks were also a bit tricky because we had to make sure every single kick sounded different. It was amazing to play back the scene when we finished and hear all the different subtleties and textures we created … so rewarding!
Ryan Kennedy (Dialogue and Music Re-recording Mixer): My approach to dialogue in moments like these is to try to let our announcer float on top of the scene. Here, we have [sports presenter] Arlo White giving us the play-by-play and I like to treat it as not as though we are watching a television show, but watching our favorite team fighting for their life. Then, I let the dialogue from the actors come in. I might take a few passes on the same scene until I get it right, but in the end, it is how we were made to feel, that is what we remember.
Richard Brown (Music Editor): This clip starts in the middle of one of my favorite cues, I think there were seven different versions composed along the way. This cue not only needs to support the entire team buying into Ted Lasso, what he is trying to accomplish, and how he has changed them for the better, but It also needs to provide the sort of base-layer of an action-sports score. [Composers] Tom Howe and Marcus Mumford accomplished that beautifully.
The idea the composers came up with was stripping everything back to only rhythmic elements and a bass guitar. It’s such an elegant solution sonically and emotionally. And then “You’ll Never Walk Alone” comes in. What sticks out to me most seeing it again is what an incredible job editor A.J. Catoline did with this sequence. The toughest part for me was figuring out how to trim the song down to support the scene and maintain the integrity of Marcus’ performance. The way it’s built there needs to be a pause for Ted’s postgame speech and then a reprise afterwards. We end on the last word of the second verse and ring it out right before the song would normally go into the chorus, leaving a “What now?” that Ted, as usual, gracefully answers.