Warning! Spoilers for The Plot Against America ahead!
The story so far: Alvin’s hatred of Germany causes him to make a rash decision. Rabbi Lionel Bengelsdorf’s support of Charles Lindgergh leads to a new President of the United States. Evelyn becomes closer to the Rabbi causing more strife at home. The Levins try to deal with the changing attitude in the country while also navigating problems within.
Part three of The Plot Against America may be the most emotional yet. The most obvious feeling is fear. Newly elected President Lindbergh has been in office for a few months. In a short amount of time, the Levins’s world has become drastically different. They live surrounded by hate and do not know where to turn. The show is filled with tension.
Getting the fear across is almost easy. The country is now openly bigoted and resentful. The undercurrent of hate has risen and is affecting everyone. What The Plot Against America also shows is the differing layers of anger. On one hand, some people are mad at others for seemingly just existing. (This leads to another emotion-sadness.)
Ironically, this anger may be seen most in the Levins. Obviously, there is fear. Bess thinks of leaving the country while Phillip is having trouble sleeping. Then there is Herman and Alvin who cannot believe what has transpired. The Plot Against America does an excellent job of showcasing an anger that intermingles with disbelief. The viewers understand the reactions but also question if there is a better way. It is constant question of how much is too much.
Somehow, the episode still has uplifting moments. The overarching story between Sandy and his father ends with an incredibly satisfying payoff. There is also a great moment that showcases Herman’s singing voice. It is a strong reminder this is more than a show dealing with deep and relatable themes; it is one about family and their struggle to overcome.
The Plot Against America is an emotionally powerful show. The performances are great and the story builds an excellent atmosphere. Viewers will be mesmerized and aghast at what they see. David Simon’s latest drama is one of the most emotionally involved series on television. The third part of the HBO miniseries is the best episode yet and is appointment television.