And that’s how you do a follow-up episode!
What I love most about The Americans (and yes I think I already love it) is the fact that it makes you root for two highly flawed and dastardly individuals. Much like the protagonists of Revenge and Scandal, The Jennings are the perfect antiheroes; you root for them even though they commit heinous acts that make you question your own morals and beliefs. This polarizing depiction was quite especially apparent in this episode as our couple blackmailed a woman with the life of her own son in service of their country. Suffice to say, it was fascinating to watch unfold and I’m really looking forward to similar thought-provoking scenarios.
The show’s crazy world is already growing increasingly complex as the FBI now have a soviet spy in the Russian embassy (not to mention the Jennings neighbor who might suspect them), while our leads now have a listening device in the Secretary of Defense’s house. It looks like the Jennings are going to find themselves smack-dab in the middle of the war which really elevates the stakes in an intriguing manner.
This episode also did a superb job of providing us with a bunch of very human moments that made our couple more sympathetic. While I loved Elizabeth piercing her daughter’s ear (and probably fearing she doesn’t much time with her), the episode’s standout sequence for me was Phillip presenting Elizabeth with a rich caviar dinner. It’s such a nuanced and well-executed scene that’s beautifully acted by Keri Russel in particular.
If I had any complaints, it would be Phillip’s blonde bimbo asset. God she was annoying.
An excellent followup from a very promising show.