All American season 6 episode 8 recap: parallels with the past

Daniel Ezra and Taye Diggs as Spencer and Billy talking in All American season 6 episode 8
Daniel Ezra and Taye Diggs, All American (Image credit: Troy Harvey/The CW)

In All American season 6 episode 8, "Kids See Ghosts," Billy Baker (Taye Diggs) returns to guide Spencer (Daniel Ezra), Olivia (Samantha Logan) and Jordan (Michael Evans Behling) as they all face some personal dilemmas they need to work through. Elsewhere, Layla (Greta Onieogou) finds a therapist willing to help her seek an alternative to antidepressants. However, when they start an EDMR journey, she's forced to remember some hidden scars of her past. 

Here's what happened in All American season 6 episode 8.  

Spencer steps into Billy's shoes

Taye Diggs as Billy sitting next to Daniel Ezra as Spencer reading in All American season 6 episode 8

Taye Diggs and Daniel Ezra, All American (Image credit: Troy Harvey/The CW)

Spencer and Olivia arrive at his mom's house to house-sit for Grace (Karimah Westbrook), who is in Cabo with D'Angelo (Lamon Archey). Olivia gets a message from her editor about the book. Turns out she's been dodging him after missing her deadline, believing the book is missing something. 

Before Spencer and Olivia can continue discussing the issue, Deion (Taiv Lee) arrives needing a place to stay. The teen claims his sister kicked him out of the house after he quit the football team. Spencer agrees he can stay there temporarily. 

Later, Spencer, Olivia and Jordan arrive at the Baker house to meet Laura (Monet Mazur). Laura pulls out two letters from a box, one for each of the twins. She says Billy wrote them and they were to be read after they each graduated college. However, she is giving Olivia her letter early since Olivia is having trouble finishing the book; Jordan gets his letter early because Laura jokingly doesn't want to hear him whine. 

Spencer is about to excuse himself when Laura says she has something for him from Billy as well. She hands him a journal Billy started writing shortly after Spencer moved in with them. Spencer doesn't believe he's deserving of such a personal item, but Laura insists Billy would want him to have it. 

As Spencer starts reading Billy's journal, Billy appears. Billy questions if he's out of his mind for letting Spencer move into his home, but notes Spencer needs guidance and has so much potential. Just then, Deion interrupts Spencer's reading, saying he's going out. When Spencer asks Deion where he's going, Deion becomes defensive and abrasive before leaving. 

Spencer again reads the journal and Billy pops back up, saying teenage boys "smell disgusting, run around eating up things, constantly pissed off." Spencer can't help but laugh thinking about how he was when he first moved into the Baker home. Billy says he eventually realized the best way to reach Spencer was to speak to the person who knew him best, Grace. This gives Spencer the idea to talk to Deion's sister, Tasha (Shawana Carter).

When Tasha and Spencer meet, she wastes no time ripping into him. She blames him for her brother quitting, but Spencer fires back that Deion hated football. Spencer says Deion quitting football is no reason for her to kick him out of the house, and she surprises Spencer by sharing that's not what happened, a point that Spencer later brings up with Deion in a heated moment that Olivia has to break up. 

Before Spencer heads to bed, he reads some more of Billy's journal. Billy says Laura gave him the best advice when trying to determine how to help Spencer. He doesn't have to figure it all out on his own, which are the exact words Olivia shares with Spencer. 

The next day, Tasha arrives at the James home, much to Deion's surprise. Spencer gets the siblings to talk and Tasha learns her brother was having panic attacks playing football. Deion learns his sister doesn't care if he plays football, but rather wants him to have more than she has in life. The duo manages to solve their issues and go home. 

Is Jordan declaring for the NFL draft? 

When Jordan reads his letter, Billy appears and says he knows people will try to get Jordan to be just like him, but he's not perfect. He encourages Jordan to have the strength of his own convictions and notes he believes in Jordan. 

Reading his father's words, Jordan goes to meet with Mac (Jamel King) for advice about the NFL draft. Mac advises he focus on finishing the college season strong in the upcoming championship game, as it will help him raise his prospects should he decide to go into the draft. 

Later, alone with Layla at the beach house, Jordan watches an interview featuring Mac. The interim head coach at GAU compliments Jordan as exceptional and takes a little credit for his success on the field this year. When Mac is asked whether or not Jordan plans to declare for the draft, Mac notes that most quarterbacks that enter the league early washout, so it would be premature for Jordan to enter the draft now. 

Jordan goes to confront Mac the next day. Mac says it's nothing personal, he was just talking about the numbers in the league. The young Baker rebuts those are just the numbers Mac chose to highlight. Jordan also comments that Mac attributed Jordan's success to his work. Jordan says this is all about Mac not wanting to lose his starting quarterback next season. 

By the end of the episode, Jordan speaks with the same interviewer Mac talked to and claims he plans to finish out his college football career with Coach Kenny Boone (Mustafa Speaks). Jordan attributes Boone as the reason he and GAU have been successful. 

Olivia submits her book

Daniel Ezra and Samantha Logan as Spencer and Olivia sitting next to each other in All American season 6 episode 8

Daniel Ezra and Samantha Logan, All American (Image credit: Tina Thorpe/The CW)

Olivia is reluctant to read her dad's letter, believing she's not ready to hear from him. Then in another parallel moment, Spencer recalls when his dad died, how he too had a hard time reading his letters. However, it was Olivia who pushed Spencer to realize the letters were a gift and that he was strong enough to read them. He then looks at Olivia who now has the strength to read Billy's words. 

Billy shares with his daughter that she's destined for great things and that he believes in her. These words eventually give her the strength to send the draft of her book to the editor. 

Layla again struggles with thoughts of her mom

Layla meets with her new therapist Dr. Gibbs (April Parker Jones), and the two start EDMR treatment, a process that uses sensory tools to help Layla drudge up memories and wade through past traumas. As she begins the process, she recalls a memory of her mother being severely depressed and lying in bed and her dad desperately trying to get her up. Going further, Layla becomes her mother and Jordan becomes her father. Dr. Gibbs helps Layla realize the reason she's been dragging her feet on marrying Jordan is because she's subconsciously afraid she's her mother and Jordan is her father. 

Later talking to Jordan, Layla assures him she doesn't want to call off their engagement, but needs some time to work through her feelings about her mother and her own mental health struggles. Layla also makes a point to say they are not her parents, as her mom didn't know how to ask for help and her dad didn't know how to give it. Layla is asking and Jordan is there and patient, ready to help her.

New episodes of All American air on Mondays at 8 pm ET/PT on The CW. Here is how to watch All American season 6.

Terrell Smith

Terrell Smith has a diverse writing background having penned material for a wide array of clients including the federal government and Bravo television personalities.  When he’s not writing as Terrell, he’s writing under his pseudonym Tavion Scott, creating scripts for his audio drama podcasts. Terrell is a huge fan of great storytelling when it comes to television and film. Some of his favorite shows include The CrownWandaVision, Abbot Elementary and Godfather of HarlemAnd a fun fact is he's completely dialed into the TLC 90 Day Fiancé universe.