Home TV Shows Reviews Apple TV+ ‘The Big Cigar’ Episode 3 Review - Ideological Clashes and High-Stakes Drama

Apple TV+ ‘The Big Cigar’ Episode 3 Review - Ideological Clashes and High-Stakes Drama

The episode follows Huey P. Newton’s escalating conflicts with Eldridge and increasing dangers on his path to Cuba, while Bert and Steve clash over their involvement in Huey’s escape.

Anjali Sharma - Thu, 23 May 2024 22:18:48 +0100 544 Views
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Watching episode 3 of "The Big Cigar" was a gripping experience, continuing the thrilling saga of Huey P. Newton's daring journey to Cuba. Titled "Guns & Matzah," this episode dives deeper into the complexities of Huey's escape plan and the mounting tensions among the main characters. Written by Gwendolyn M. Parker and Laurence Andries, the episode strikes a balance between intense drama and character-driven storytelling, though not without a few hiccups along the way.


In "Guns and Matzah," we see Huey and Eldridge's ideological rift growing wider. Their differing visions for the Black Panther Party create a palpable tension that underscores much of the episode's drama. Huey's unwavering commitment to his revolutionary ideals contrasts sharply with Eldridge's more pragmatic, sometimes cynical approach. This ideological clash isn't just a subplot; it’s a crucial element that highlights the broader challenges faced by the movement during that turbulent era.


Bert and Steve also find themselves at odds, primarily over their differing perspectives on Huey. Bert's deepening involvement with Huey's cause contrasts with Steve's growing concerns about the risks involved. Their heated exchanges add another layer of tension to the narrative, emphasizing the personal stakes and the moral dilemmas that come with aiding a fugitive.


One of the standout aspects of this episode is the directorial choices made by Damon Thomas. His ability to capture the escalating tension through tight, claustrophobic shots immerses the audience in the characters' anxiety and desperation. The use of dim lighting and confined spaces, particularly in scenes where Huey and his allies are plotting their next move, heightens the sense of urgency and danger.


The character arcs continue to evolve compellingly. André Holland’s portrayal of Huey P. Newton remains a highlight. He embodies Huey's charismatic yet troubled persona, showcasing a leader who is both inspiring and deeply flawed. Holland’s performance in this episode particularly shines during moments of quiet reflection and intense confrontation, providing a nuanced portrayal of a man under immense pressure.


Alessandro Nivola as Bert Schneider offers a compelling counterbalance to Huey. Bert's journey from a detached Hollywood producer to an active participant in Huey's escape plan is portrayed with a subtlety that avoids clichés. His growing commitment to Huey's cause, despite his initial reluctance, adds depth to his character and provides a lens through which the audience can explore the moral complexities of their mission.


The episode’s writing, by Parker and Andries, effectively builds on the series' established themes of loyalty, betrayal, and the cost of revolution. The dialogue is sharp, often cutting, and helps to flesh out the characters' motivations and fears. However, there are moments where the dialogue feels a bit on the nose, particularly in some of the more expository scenes. These instances can momentarily pull the viewer out of the otherwise immersive narrative.


One of the most compelling scenes in this episode is the intense confrontation between Bert and Steve. Their argument over the risks involved in helping Huey is not only a clash of ideologies but also a deeply personal conflict that speaks to the core of their characters. The scene is well-executed, with both actors delivering powerful performances that convey the gravity of their situation.


However, not everything in "Guns and Matzah" hits the mark. The pacing of this episode, while generally tight, occasionally drags, particularly in the middle sections. There are moments where the story seems to meander, losing some of the momentum built up in the previous episodes. These slower segments can make the 60-minute runtime feel a bit stretched, especially when compared to the more action-packed sequences.


In conclusion, episode 3 of "The Big Cigar" continues to deliver the high-stakes drama and complex character dynamics that have become the show's hallmark. The ideological clashes, moral dilemmas, and ever-present danger make for a riveting viewing experience. While the pacing issues and occasional heavy-handed dialogue detract slightly from the overall impact, the episode's strengths far outweigh its weaknesses. With its compelling portrayal of a critical moment in Huey P. Newton's life and the broader struggle for justice, "Guns and Matzah" reaffirms "The Big Cigar" as a series worth watching.


Final Score- [7/10]

 

 

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