Last Chance U: Laney is now streaming on Netflix, and fans were surprised to see the show has a connection with author Marion Zimmer Bradley. In the fourth episode, which is called "Greyhaven," Laney College wide receiver R.J. Stern revealed that he is the grandson of Bradley, who wrote the 1983 novel The Mists of Avalon. Stern was staying at Bradley's home in California with his great aunt Diana Paxson and her husband and Stern's great uncle John DeCles. Stern told the story of his life and family history, which was far from a happy story.
Bradley and her husband, Walter Breen, have been accused of child sexual abuse and rape by several parties. Breen died in prison after being charged with eight felony counts of child molestation. Bradley died in 1999. Last Chance U also interviews Stern's mother, Moria, and she shares her issues with Bradley, including abuse. It led to her having a strained relationship with Stern, but he said he understands why she was so mean to him when he was young now that he understand's the family's history.
Can’t think of many names I would LEAST expect to see mentioned in Last Chance U than Marion Zimmer Bradley but here we are pic.twitter.com/wq9NjzVmGM— Amanda Rose (@hawleyrose) July 29, 2020
"If we only had perfect people writing," Paxson said in the episode, "there would be no one left to write. What we should be doing is honoring what people manage to achieve despite their flaws." Stern is similar to Paxson in the sense he wants to distance himself from Bradley and Breen. But fans seem to love Stern because he's an underdog looking to get a scholarship from a big-time school. The episode also shows Stern showing frustration with his playing time. However, according to Screen Rant, Stern has landed an opportunity to play at Tusculum University, which is a Division II school in Greenville, Tennessee. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Stern won't be playing football this fall, but his dream is to play for the University of California.
Stern is one of the few characters that make up a compelling season of Last Chance U. Laney College is lead by Coach John Beam, who led the Eagles to a state and national championship in 2018. According to his bio, Beam has sent more than 100 players to play Division I football in his career.