Now Leaving Sunnydale vs. Meeting The Americans
It's Sarah McLachlan and the Overalls of Pain vs. classic-rock KGB!
Now Leaving Sunnydale
Meeting The Americans
The case for Now Leaving Sunnydale
Buffy's second season ends with her life in ruins - one of her friends is dead, she's wanted by the police for her murder, her mom has thrown her out of the house and, oh yeah, she's just been forced to kill the love of her life and trap him in a hell dimension in order to save the world. On a season-ending cliffhanger, set to 'Full of Grace', she packs a bag and hops a Greyhound out of town, while her mother (and the audience) break down and sob.
Basically, if you can hear the opening notes of "The winter here's cold...and bitter..." and not have a Pavlovian weeping reaction, your 90s televisual cultural experience is incomplete.
The case for Meeting The Americans
The opening action scene of the pilot to FX's underwatched white-knuckle drama The Americans introduces us to KGB superagents Phillip and Elizabeth Jennings through bone-cracking hand-to-hand combat, vintage espionage tradecraft, and a memorable remix of Fleetwood Mac's "Tusk." Marital and geopolitical tensions build to the strains of the USC Marching Band's horn section as viewers take in the Jennings' determination to overthrow Western democracy with a new ripped-from-the-headlines urgency. Or if that's too heavy, we can thrill to the super-hotness and chemistry of the leads, guffaw at the ridiculousness of their spy disguises, and marvel at how lax security was in federal buildings in the 1980s. TUSK!