As the third and final season of Ted Lasso draws to a close, it’s hard to predict how the series will tie up its loose ends. However, one thing is certain: it won’t be able to capture the authentic underdog story that is Sunderland ‘Til I Die. This documentary series on Netflix, which unfortunately remains overlooked by many, is a hidden gem that closely mirrors the storyline of AFC Richmond.
Like Ted Lasso’s team, Sunderland also has a lot of heart but struggles to gain glory. It faces relegation to the lower ranks of English football, and the players fight tooth and nail to reclaim their place in the Premier League. The stark contrast between the two shows is that while Ted Lasso can sometimes feel trite and unrealistic, Sunderland ‘Til I Die is entirely sincere and genuine. You won’t find any Lasso-esque cheesiness or “believe in believe” platitudes in this touching documentary, which has two seasons available for streaming right now on Netflix.
It’s wonderful to hear that you love the documentary series, and I couldn’t agree more with your sentiments. What makes Sunderland’s ‘Til I Die so special is its authenticity and portrayal of ordinary people fighting against all odds. The football team and its supporters are like an indie band struggling to make their mark in a world dominated by major labels. They understand that hope can be a double-edged sword, but they still choose to cling to it regardless.
Sunderland ‘Til I Die is not just about football; it’s a love letter to a city that has seen better days but refuses to give up on its beloved football club. Even if you’re not a football fan, you can appreciate the way this city holds on to the idea of a better future, despite the multiple setbacks and disappointments it has faced. As one scene puts it, “Not many people have had it easy in Sunderland. It is a hard place.”
The Guardian reviewer was spot-on in their description of this series as a tribute to a city that’s down on its luck but still holding on to a kind of wayward child that they can’t bring themselves to let go of. We’re eagerly anticipating the release of the third season, which Netflix has confirmed is in the works, and we’re hopeful that it will wrap up the story on a high note. Though we don’t know the official release date yet, we’re certain it will be worth the wait.
The fans’ emotional attachment to Sunderland Football Club is palpable in Sunderland ‘Til I Die, and it’s evident that the club means more to the city than just a team on a field. As one fan laments in a pub after a loss, “Sunderland Football Club is Sunderland. And if it doesn’t get good, we haven’t got much going for us to start with. It’s just another nail in the coffin.” The sentiment is echoed by another who compares it to the decline of the shipyards and pits that once drove the local economy.
The series opens in an unlikely location – a church, where Father Marc Lyden-Smith leads the congregation in a prayer for Sunderland Football Club and the city it represents. The prayer emphasizes the importance of football as a unifying force, guiding fans through their disappointment and frustration and asking for the players’ self-belief and confidence. The prayer is a powerful reminder of the deep bond between the club and the city, and how their fortunes are inextricably linked.