*WARNING* SPOILERS AHEAD
Well that’s a straight forward title.
The biggest point on the most recent episode is the new car that Philip bought. It was a Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, a freaking sports car that greatly represents how capitalism works. It also represents how Philip loves America, and the way he’s not ashamed of it at all. He listens to American music, likes the food, and apparently, loves fast cars. He even had his moment with Elizabeth where Philip was trying to pressure her into admitting that she likes it in America.
“It’s easier but it’s not better.” Elizabeth said. A statement that solidified her stance on Communism and the American way, which was again, tested when she had to choose between killing Larric or saving Lucia. Lucia loved her country, but she wanted to kill Larric so bad that she failed to see Elizabeth’s bigger point. Killing Larric would just be a small victory but keeping him on a leash would be more beneficial for the KGB. In the end, that’s what justified Elizabeth’s decision and Lucia is permanentky out of the game.
Back to the car, which is again, a reminder of Philip’s mixed feelings with America. He drove it to a meeting with his new handler Kate only to hate the car after she told her that a submarine containing 160 Russians blew up. The reason is that the submarine was retro fitted with new propellers that didn’t work properly. The designs for the said propellers were stolen from the Americans by Philip and Elizabeth. In short, the blame fell on Philip, Elizabeth, and everything that was connected to the whole operation. Philip was the first one who felt really guilty about what happened and he never looked at his new car the same way again.
Meanwhile, Stan Beeman’s life has also been affected by Philip’s new car. After seeing Philip driving the new Camaro, Stan had a tantrum in his small garage. The stress is obviously building up on him as he is forced to give secrets to the enemy to protect Nina. Without his knowledge, he is being “turned” bit by bit. On his future, might this be a way to fully become the enemy he’s trying to fight so hard, or will it be the source of his redemption? Nobody knows yet but it really feels like the writers of The Americans are playing it really slow with Beeman.
Speaking of slow play, this episode is the perfect example of how great the writers set everything up. Lucia was introduced to us, given a back story, went on to crazy missions, just to be choked by Larric. The propeller plans, the “business is booming” so buy a new car thing, those were planned way back just to give us this very satisfying episode. Even Philips defiance to “brain rotting” video games gave the opportunity for Henry to have his own moment. “I’m a good person, I swear, I’m good!”
Over all, New Car is a very satisfying episode. It’s really balanced and a good set up for the whole Nicaraguan Contras plot that they will be tackling on the next episodes.