Will Nathan get a redemption arc in Ted Lasso season 3?

Nathan ‘Nate’ Shelley was once one of the most loved characters of Ted Lasso. Despite his insecurities and troubles, his goodness brought him very close to our hearts, and we all cheered as he rose from being the kit=man of AFC Richmond to the team’s assistant coach.

He was crucial for the team’s many wins and successes, as in several cases Ted was unfamiliar with the game and the environment, and Nate was the one who gave crucial information that played an essential part in the team’s performance. He was a great coach and a lovable character, and his arc is the most unexpected and shocking one in the series.  

From one of our favorites to a typical villain, Ted Lasso Season 3 sees Nate ultimately fulfilling his role as the antagonist. However, Ted Lasso and the titular character are known for their goodness, which will eventually get Nate redeemed.

Let’s go into detail!

1. Was Coach Nate always the villain? Was he bad from the start?

Will Nathan get a redemption arc in Ted Lasso season 3?
Nate as the assistant coach of AFC Richmond

Coach Nate was not a negative character in Ted Lasso initially. On the contrary, Nate was a lovable character who became close to the audience out of his goodness and talents and rose to prominence in the show. He was accepting of Ted and was indispensable to the team.

Nate was initially the kit-man of AFC Richmond. He was bullied a lot, but he was among the first to welcome Ted Lasso to the team, so far away from home and what the latter knows. Nate’s knowledge of the game and talent was crucial to the successes of the time, and he was promoted to assistant coach, as he deserved. He was extremely helpful even when he was not obligated to be, and he found his way to our hearts in the first season.

However, as Nate’s confidence and popularity grew, his insecurities found their way to the surface. They began to dominate his personality, turning him into the villain we now can’t believe he is.

2. How did Nate become the villain of Ted Lasso?

Will Nathan get a redemption arc in Ted Lasso season 3?
Nathan Shelley in Ted Lasso

Coach Nate became the antagonist of Ted Lasso as his ego grew along with his recognition. His insecurities pushed him to consider entitlement as his deserving right, and he began to be condescending and push his resentment onto everyone else.

Nathan Shelley desperately needed the attention and praise he was receiving. As his confidence grew, it turned to the other extreme where he considered himself entitled to all the admiration. His annoyance when the reporters focused on Ted rather than him and when people didn’t recognize him was pretty visible in the show.

Nate was done playing second to anyone and began showing off in front of everyone, even creating the ‘Wonder Kid’ praise. He considered himself better than Ted and the team and started acting out, speaking harshly and belittling them. 

Finally, he leaves AFC Richmond to join West Ham United, the rival team that Rebecca’s hated ex-husband owns. This was not only a betrayal to the former team but also a personal betrayal to Rebecca herself and the audience.

3. Is Nate a typical villain in Ted Lasso? How is he the antagonist of the show?

Will Nathan get a redemption arc in Ted Lasso season 3?
Nick Mohammad as Nate Shelley in Ted Lasso

Clad in black and holding meetings in dungeon-like rooms, Coach Nate has transformed into the typical villain in Season 3 of Ted Lasso. He constantly reprimands his players and insults Ted publicly. He has turned into an egomaniac and earns the title of antagonist. 

As Nate left AFC Richmond, he also leaked information about Ted’s anxiety attacks, creating a dubious impression of him and the team among the public. He also tore apart the ‘Believe’ sign in the locker room and insulted Ted publicly. The animosity he has for Ted has begun to become crystal clear.

In Season 3, as the head coach of West Ham United, Nathan Shelley has changed. With gray-streaked hair and black outfits, he holds meeting in dark rooms and conducts himself with all the style and contempt of a villain. The makers of the show have changed his appearance to match the new attitude and character he has.

He constantly checks the news and latest updates to further his sense of entitlement, and Rupert, Rebecca’s husband (I dislike him the most), is there all along the way to support him in this endeavor, dispelling the rare moments we see Nate’s humanity streak through his latest appearance. 

He continues to insult Ted and AFC Richmond and degrades the players of his new team. He acts out and does not care about who it is that must bear the brunt of it. His ego and attitude are the exact opposite of what we saw of him at the start of the show.

4. Will Nate be redeemed in Ted Lasso?

Will Nathan get a redemption arc in Ted Lasso season 3?
Nate at the beginning of the show

Ted Lasso is a family show that stresses on optimism and goodness. Despite his shortcomings, the titular character also embodies these qualities. And if the show continues along these lines, Nathan will indeed be redeemed in the show, possibly even in Season 3.

Coach Ted seems intent on redeeming Nate in Season 3 of the show. He didn’t want to show the players the video of Nate destroying the ‘Believe’ sign, and he has also not removed Ted’s figuring from his son’s Lego pitch of AFC Richmond. 

Ted is very optimistic and kind towards everyone, regardless of their behavior toward him. Even after his team’s humiliating defeat at the hands of West Ham United, Ted offered Nate a friendly handshake that went grossly unnoticed. Ted is the epitome of good leading to good in people, and we can see how that has changed the show’s characters for the better. 

We also have, rarely though, seen Nate’s morality still intact somewhere deep inside. In some instances, we can see him resentful of his relationship with Ted and the team and how he regrets it. We can keep our fingers crossed for Nate to be redeemed in the show and return from the dark side.

Stay tuned to Cine Dope for the latest updates on Ted Lasso!

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5. About Ted Lasso

Ted Lasso is an American sports-comedy streaming TV series developed by Bill Lawrence, Jason Sudeikis, Joe Kelly, and Brendan Hunt. It’s based on a character of the same name that Sudeikis first portrayed in a series of promos for NBC Sports’ coverage of the Premier League.

It follows the life of Ted Lasso, a coach of college-level American football who is unexpectedly recruited to coach an English Premier League team, AFC Richmond, despite having no experience at all in association football.

It stars Sudeikis as the titular character, Ted Lasso, joined by Hannah Waddingham, Jeremy Swift, Phil Dunster, Brett Goldstein, Brendan Hunt, Nick Mohammed, Juno Temple, and Sarah Niles among many others.

Epic Dope Staff

Epic Dope Staff

Our talented team of Freelance writers - Always on the lookout - pour their energies into a wide range of topics bringing to our audience what they crave - fun up-to-date news, reviews, fan theories and much much more.


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