The Americans 208 - New Car:
OK, am I the only one who’s getting a little bit confused by all the recent goings on? In this episode for example, I still have no idea who the Jewish prisoner is or why they need him. Then as for that bit involving the recording of people speaking about Martha (who I still adore) I was confused as to why Philip was going to play this to her or why he changed it. Finally, the crying truck driver at the end (Lewis?) confused me. I mean, who was he and what was he for?!
However on a brighter note, I was glad to see a nice range of excruciatingly tense moments throughout the episode. Lucia’s demise actually had me on the edge of my seat as Elizabeth made her fatal decision. I wish we had more of these sorts of moments though, where the true intentions and morals of the main characters are tested.
Another slight issue was Henry’s shenanigans this episode. I didn’t really understand what it was supposed to represent or what the purpose of this storyline was. The fact that the episode ended with his tearful apology has however made me hopeful that we may see more of him or Paige (who was strangely absent this episode) in the near future.
PBest character of the episode: Nina.
Hi—I think I can help with these.
The Jewish prisoner is Anton Baklanov, a physicist. He left Russia and moved to America, where he was working on stealth technology. The Russians want his expertise. When they saw he wouldn’t work for them willingly, they kidnapped him and dragged him back to Russia.
The tape of people talking came from the bug Martha planted in Gaad’s office. Martha expressed reluctance to continue bugging him. Philip altered the tape to make it seem even more insulting of Martha, hoping to make her no longer think the people she worked with were too nice to bug, even if it was for the US government (which it really isn’t, but she doesn’t know that).
The truck driver brings things into an out of the secret Contra training camp. Philip and Elizabeth kidnapped him so they could be his “replacement” truck driver when he calls in sick for work (because he’s tied up in the woods) and they can get into the camp themselves.
Henry was doing a lot of the things his dad was doing last episode—spying on people through telescope lenses and breaking and entering. In Henry’s case it was just to get access to a video game, but he got caught and is now all too aware of how people might judge him for his actions even though he sees himself as knowing right from wrong and thought what he did seemed okay at the time. Just like Philip, especially, think about themselves.
Since Tumblr will for some reason never just let me reblog somebody’s post unless it’s on my dashboard or something…
Taterpie posted about the new Grayson book, and I thought:
It kind of seems like they tossed out everything about who the character was because he has no place in the kind of male power fantasies they’re into now, so they’re looking for a way to make him badass by grabbing onto a different trope.
If they were dealing with the Dick Grayson I grew up with it could really be an interesting story because that guy would be seriously conflicted about lying and manipulating people—and he certainly wasn’t somebody who would particularly like honeytrapping people like the men and women on The Americans do.
Lying to everyone about being dead and causing them that kind of pain is also the type of thing that Bruce would do and Dick would think was a terrible thing to do—I’m pretty sure he even said that in the past. But since New 52 it seems like nobody cares about anybody overmuch so nothing matters, tbh.
So, you know, Matthew Weiner says how this season’s all about the consequences of actions and choices. But the problem is, I feel like the only reason they took those actions and made those choices was so that MW could have suffer these consequences. So it doesn’t feel very organic.
I think that’s why these people can manage to be really eloquent and determined about getting themselves into trouble, but not to get themselves out.
I just wanted to say something in response to a thing I keep hearing about the HIMYM finale in defense of it. (Btw, if you liked it, that’s cool and you enjoy that.) But this is the thing I keep reading:
SPOILERS TO FOLLOW, OBVIOUSLY
"The finale we got was perfect and right because it wasn’t the fairy tale ending. Real life is messy—it’s not a fairy tale! This ending showed that and that’s beautiful!"
I just feel the need to break that down a little bit. Fairy tales tend to be associated with magical intervention in service of making sure the hero gets kind of improbably rewarded and validated, right? So according to this theory, if you’re a healthy guy in your 30s and…
You meet a healthy young woman with whom you have a lot in common. You fall in love and quickly have two kids whose high school graduations you both live long enough to see.
That a fairy tale. Never happen in the real world. Stop dreaming!
However, if you’re the same guy and…
You fall in love at first sight with beautiful woman who rejects you because you want different things and she doesn’t love you. Then she comes to regret it and realize that you were her chance at happiness! So some day in the future she’ll be grateful for the big romantic gesture she once didn’t go for and it will work the way it never did before. Also she still looks mostly the same.
That’s the gritty, realistic ending. No wish-fulfillment there at all.
In short, just saying lots of time passed and life stuff happened in the finale doesn’t make it the Six Feet Under finale montage.
Various job-related issues aside, a question worth considering… are Philip and Elizabeth good parents?
If you can ignore the whole fact that their life is a dangerous lie that pulls the kids into it—which I can ignore to discuss their everyday interactions—yes. And the kids’ development seems to show that. There are plenty of people who had kids under much better circumstances and don’t try as hard—and people who also bring kids into less than ideal situations.
While I do sincerely feel for the distress the HIMYM fandom is going through right now…
..It is a little more than satisfying to know that those of us in the Dexter fandom are now not the only ones who had to experience a shit ending to a beloved series.
Some of us were in both!
Though luckily I was only a casual viewer of HIMYM so Dexter still reigns supreme there.