Salang Pass, the name of this season’s fifth episode, is where a large group of Soviet troops were killed in a tunnel fire during the Soviet war in Afghanistan. It is not known exactly how many perished. Directed by Kevin Dowling and written by Stephen Schiff, this episode felt more focused on specific scenes than the last episode, even when it was jumping around to progress story lines.
The show opens with the group still on the road, 60 miles away from their destination of Washington, D.C. and they are in dire straits. Maggie is sobbing alone in the woods attempting to deal with her recent loss. Without food or water, we find that Daryl is digging up and eating earthworms and Sasha is combing a dry riverbed for the potential ground water but instead finds a bunch of frogs belly-up, a potent and foreboding biblical symbol. The intro ends with Maggie considering how long they have left to live, rather than how far they have left to go. This is survival.
The group runs out of gas and is forced to walk the remaining distance to Washington. On their walk Gabriel attempts to console Maggie but his attempt Maggie falls flat. In general, I am still uncertain which way Gabriel will go. He is obviously attempting to connect to the group and participate. I feel, however, that this is largely because he knows that his survival is bound up with the survival of the group. It’s hard to tell if he really cares or is just playing the part because it means further survival. There is the potential for a safe-zone ahead; we will see. Continue reading →
The latest episode, Open House, was noticeably different from last week’s, Baggage. The scenes seemed much longer and more intimate. At times the anxiety from so much action and extended periods without speaking became unbearable – in a great way. It was a good balance so that the viewer could take in more visual information without being overwhelmed trying to follow what the characters were saying. Maybe that’s just my ADD talking but I found myself responding more to the first outing this season from writer, Stuart Zicherman and director, Thomas Schlamme.
Just to get it out of the way now, nothing happened in this episode to progress Nina’s or Yousaf’s stories, and the goings on at the Rezidentura were minimal.
This is a little late, but here’s a recap of the last episode of Americans. Episode 2 was called Baggage and aired on February 4th, 2015. There are certainly spoilers galore if you haven’t seen the episode yet. I’ve grouped specific story lines instead of going scene by scene so that relative information stays important to the characters involved.