TV Recap: “Big Shot” – Marvyn Korn Makes a Final Decision About His Future in the Season Finale

The season finale of Big Shot debuted today on Disney+ and while it’s still unknown if we’ll get a second season, “Marvyn’s Playbook” wraps everything up nicely. It’s the moment of truth, will Marvyn Korn really leave Westbrook? Will Holly take the head coach job at Carlsbad? Here’s the play-by-play of the tenth episode of Big Shot.

(Disney/Gilles Minguasson)

(Disney/Gilles Minguasson)

Marvyn is having nightmares about Emma pointing directly at him during “Beth Macbath” when a phone call from his agent Sam wakes him up. “Congratulations Marvyn, you are about to graduate from high school to college,” Sam tells him, adding that he’s working out a few kinks in the deal with UCSB. Marvyn hesiates and Sam asks if he’s having second thoughts, telling him an offer like this won’t happen again if he passes on it. Marvyn says he’s not having second thoughts.

Out in the kitchen, Emma asks why her dad didn’t tell her about his job offer and he tells her he didn’t want to upset her. “You knew I would be upset. Did that not bother you?” She gets upset when he tells her he’s definitely taking the job. “I’m never part of these decisions, you just announce them and I have to live with them.”  Marvyn tells Emma that he works a demanding job to be able to give her a nice life. “No dad, you do it because you love it and it’s your dream.” Lucas’ horn honks and Emma leaves to ride with him to school.

Holly is coaching practice when Marvyn walks in, the Sirens pretending they don’t see or hear him and calling Holly “Coach.” While the girls play, Holly tells Marvyn about Coach McCarthy’s offer for her to take her job at Carlsbad. “I wouldn’t trust her, she’s sneaky that one,” Marvyn warns, but agrees that she should take the job if it’s real.

Holly enters the locker room to talk to the girls and learns that Samantha’s playbook has gone missing. She last had it at the play and the girls accuse Jake from Carlsbad of stealing it, who was there as Olive’s guests. Olive asks Holly if she really thinks that could have happened. “It’s a possibility,” she says. Olive feels played by Jake. “This is why we’re going to beat them at the game,” Louise encourages her. The Sirens suggest that Holly write them new plays and when she tells them she’s not their coach. They call Korn a traitor. “He’s still your coach and if you don’t have a coach, you forfeit. I am not coaching you.”

Ms. Goodwyn finds Emma in the hallway and congratulates her on her performance, asking what inspired her newfound energy. Emma tells her that her dad is taking a job at UCSB and she has to leave and that’s what inspired her. “Wait, he’s really leaving?” Maggie hadn’t heard about it. Emma starts to tear up. “That is what he does and now I have to leave the only place…” Before she can continue, Emma breaks down in tears and Ms. Goodwyn hugs her. “Listen to me, you are going to be okay.” Harper comes from around the corner and sees her mom hugging Emma.

At the next practice, the Sirens tell Coach Korn that they believe Carlsbad stole their playbook and also tell him that students have been cyber bullying Samantha, who confesses to faking her sprained ankle as a result. Marvyn plays with the girls a little bit, making them admit they need him as their coach and before he agrees to write them new plays.

At lunch, Mouse and Harper sit down at a table together flirting and complimenting each other. Harper is jealous that even though she’s the star of the show, Emma’s performance is what everyone’s talking about. “Even mother was hugging her and mother’s not a hugger.” She accuses Emma of trying to steal her mom and Mouse tells Harper about her dad taking the job at UCSB, which means she’s leaving Westbrook.

Meanwhile, Emma sits with Lucas, who tries to comfort his girlfriend. “If you can’t change things, maybe you try to make the best of them,” he says, adding that he has a car and Santa Barbara isn’t that far away. “Your dad really loves you, you know. Things could be worse. A lot. Trust me.” Lucas tells Emma that he loves her and she reciprocates. They’re about to kiss when Harper walks up to the table. “I think you’re very talented and I know what you’re going through. You’re not alone.” It’s an awkward exchange.

When Destiny arrives home, her “Aunt” Angel is there. Christina gives them space and Angel tells destiny she must be so mad at her. “I’m not angry anymore, I just, I don’t know what it all means. Everything is the same, just different.” Angel offers to answer any questions she has and the first is her about who her birth dad is. “Honey, I have no idea where that man is,” Angel tells her after explaining that she was 16 and met him at a school dance. “I’m sorry for not telling you, but I’m not sorry for what happened. I saw the life my sister and her husband gave you and it was beyond what I could provide.” Getting tearful, Angel tells her that she wasn’t ready to have a child at the time. “What about now?,” Destiny asks. “I already have one.” They hug, both crying on each other’s shoulders.

Marvyn is staring at his whiteboard with writer's block when Maggie comes in. “Guilty over leaving us?” He asks her how she feels about long distance relationships. “I tried that with Harper’s father and, well, proudly single.” She proposes that Emma stay with her and continue at Westbrook. “As much as I’m loath to admit it, I’m a mother above all else. And if Emma needs a home, she can have one with me. I find her delightful.” Marvyn tells her he will think about it. She gives him a peck and says “It’s been fun,” their relationship seemingly over.

Olive meets up with Jake that night and accuses him of stealing Samantha’s playbook. He’s offended, swearing that he’s changed his ways. “There’s nothing I can say to make you believe I didn’t do this,” he gives up. “If you’re innocent, prove it,” Olive tells him.

(Disney/Gilles Minguasson)

(Disney/Gilles Minguasson)

Marvyn is invited into Sherilyn’s office for drinks. “I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but I think I’m going to miss you Marvyn.” She jokes that George Pappas probably thinks they’re friends and as they talk, she notices that he seems sad about leaving. “I told you that you were going to connect with those girls.” Marvyn tells her he doesn’t think they connected with him. “If they didn’t connect with you, they wouldn’t be mad at you for leaving.” She adds that leaving is hard for him because he’s a different person now.

Back at the markerboard, Marvyn sits down, frustrated with himself. He presses his hands against his closed eyes and hears the sound of a marker writing. When he opens them, “SACRIFICE” is written in all caps, with no evidence of who wrote it. The room goes dark and a spotlight draws his attention to his bronze statue, which is suddenly in the office, pointing out towards the gym. He walks out to see an empty gym save for a referee, who turns around. It’s George Pappas, who tells him if he doesn’t get out there to coach in 5 seconds, the Sirens forfeit. He’s stunned and suddenly George says “That’s it, you’re out, Westbrook forfeits, Carlsbad wins.” Marvyn tells him he doesn’t forfeit, but George says he already left. Out of anger, Marvyn grabs a chair and throws it, which suddenly becomes a pile of chairs and Emma is trapped underneath them asking him to help her. He runs to the pile of chairs and starts pulling them off, but when he gets to the bottom of the pile, Emma is gone. Marvyn jolts awake in his bed from his nightmare.

Marvyn sits at his kitchen table the next morning yawning when Emma comes out and tells him he looks tired. “Yeah, I haven’t been getting a lot of sleep.” He tells her about Maggie’s offer and her response is “No way.” She tells him she’s going to Santa Barbara with him. “For the first time, I feel like I finally have a dad… If I have to choose, I choose you. Even if it means I have to sacrifice everything else.” When she says the word “Sacrifice,” he remembers the word on the markerboard in his nightmare.

In the hallways, Marvyn and Holly talk when Destiny walks by with Christina and Angel. Christina hangs back to talk to them while Destiny continues giving Angel a tour of the school, with Christina referring to Angel as Destiny’s “New mom” and using the analogy of a shiny penny. “But you’ll always be her mom,” Holly consoles her. “She’s a great aunt, but she has no idea what it means to be a parent.” She thinks Angel will leave again and break Angel’s heart. “They never know what sacrifices we make, do they? That’s the job, I guess.” Christina looks at Marvyn as she says it. As Christina walks away, Holly leans in to Marvyn and says “You think you’re the shiny penny, don’t you?”

Marvyn goes to the gym alone and pulls out a rack of balls. As he shoots, he remembers playing HORSE with Destiny. A flashback montage begins: Marvyn consoling Louise and telling her “If you need anything, I’m here;” The moment he told the Sirens they have the potential to be great; Giving Olive the scholarship that was intended for Savannah; the team hugging him after he returned from his father’s funeral; Surprising Emma by renting the house she found. The last memory that comes back to him is Emma at the dinner table saying “I love you more than basketball ever will.”

The next day, Marvyn gathers the girls together and asks Emma to come. He holds up the playbook he just finished, which has the “Sacrifice Play.” Predicting that Carlsbad will team up on their best players, the play ensures that the ball is passed to who they least expect to score. “It’s taken me a long time to figure out what it means to be a dad,” he shares with the girls, listing off what he thought it meant. “And then it hit me. Being a parent is about sacrifice. Sacrificing your own needs and desires for your child.” He tells Emma that she’s a better echo of him as he takes a seat in front of the girls. “I passed on UCSB.” Their jaws drop. “It would’ve been right for my career, it was where I thought I wanted to be, but it was wrong for all of you, wrong for you Emma, and ultimately, I realized it was wrong for me… I set out to write a new playbook for the team, and I did, but I ended up writing a new one for me.” Emma walks over and gives her dad a hug.

While practicing, Coach McCarthy enters the gym to speak to Holly. Marvyn points to the office to get her out of the gym, but as she walks past she calls out to Louise. “Sorry about your daddy having to take a plea deal, giving up all that money.” Louise shrugs her off, saying “I’m fine.” McCarthy throws another jab, saying if she can’t afford Westbrook tuition next year, she can come to Carlsbad, which is D1. Marvyn yells at McCarthy to stop as she and Holly close the door behind them.

In Holly’s office, McCarthy asks why she hasn’t heard from her yet about her offer to replace her as head coach. Holly confesses that she didn’t know she was serious, but McCarthy drops a pre-signed contract on her desk that just needs Holly’s signature. Holly looks it over and says “The money’s generous.” Reading further, she has a chuckle of disbelief. “This says that it is valid in the event of your retirement. Are you retiring or not?” McCarthy swears she is, but only if she goes out on top. “What are you asking me to do here?” McCarthy uses a “Weak link in a chain” analogy to essentially tell Holly to throw the game.  “I’d rather beat you on the court,” Holly says, handing McCarthy the contract back.

The Sirens arrive at Carlsbad by bus, hearing the chanting inside the gym: “Who’s bad? Carlsbad!” Inside the locker room, the thermostat has been turned up high with locked controls and the team’s many trophies decorate the visiting school locker room. Coach Korn recognizes that the team is letting their nerves get to them and reminds them that the court is the same size and the basketballs are the same size. “As big and as intimidating as it seems, it’s the exact same size court and the exact same size ball as you’ve been playing with.” He tells them to tune out the noise, counting down from five with everyone. The noise actually does quiet down and then explodes into screams. They open the door to the gym to see the last students exiting the gym as a swarm of bees heads towards their locker room.

Outside, McCarthy yells at the referee, accusing Westbrook of releasing the bees. The referee reminds her that they have to provide the court or they forfeit the game. Marvyn suggests they play at Westbrook and to reduce the home court advantage, they decide to not have fans at the game.

(Disney/Gilles Minguasson)

(Disney/Gilles Minguasson)

The game starts, the ref tossing the ball up between Louise and Savannah. We don’t get to see most of the game, it cuts to interviews from Olive’s documentary where the girls talk about the success of the sacrifice play. In the end, the ball was passed to Mouse, who made the winning shot at the last second.

Panning out of the documentary, we’re in a celebration party for the Sirens and Marvyn is very touched. In his speech to the girls, he calls them all a family. Sherilyn congratulates Olive on her documentary and Marvyn says he’s glad it’s over, but Olive says she has one more piece to film. George Pappas is at the party and asks Marvyn for more information about the dream he had about him. Holly tells them to go out for beers together sometime and Marvyn tries to say no, but George states the time and place and exits.

Maggie stops by the party with Harper carrying a black binder. It turns out to be the missing playbook, which looks just like the tech booth binder. Olive realizes she needs to call Jake to apologize. Holly gets a phone call and steps away to answer. “You’re the last person I expected to hear from.” Joyce McCarthy congratulates her on the win. “The way you stood up to me yesterday really impressed me… That showed a lot of character, which is why I’d like you to replace me as Head Coach when I retire at the end of the semester, and I am retiring.” We hear McCarthy yell at a boy for answering his phone and it turns out to be Jake, who’s cleaning the gym as punishment for unleashing the bees. He was answering Olive’s call.

Some time later, Marvyn and Holly sit off to the side and he asks her what she’s going to do. Holly says she’s planning to take the head coach job at Carlsbad. “Congratulations. You’ve worked hard on this and I think you’ll be great.” Olive hands her phone to Emma to film the ending of her documentary as Marvyn gives a speech. “It’s been a tough year, hasn’t it? For everybody… We’ve all sacrificed something. But even through the tough times, we survived.” He asks the girls if they’re feeling stronger and they all cheer ‘Yes!” “I love you guys and I’m very proud of you, all of you.” Holly gets the girls into a circle to say “Sirens” on three.

Are you wondering if Big Shot will be renewed for a second season? Stay tuned to where we will cover any news related to this amazing Disney+ show’s future.

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