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'The Americans' on FX HD - Page 18

post #511 of 897
This show is tedious.
post #512 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldcband View Post

This show is tedious.
Your point?
post #513 of 897
I have a growing respect for Richard Thomas' performance. Much like Sal on Homeland he's become the moral compass for the show. A deeply flawed one, granted. And to say this show is better than Homeland is not a knock on Homeland. Its more a sign of how good The Americans is.
post #514 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonwolf615 View Post

I have a growing respect for Richard Thomas' performance. Much like Sal on Homeland he's become the moral compass for the show. A deeply flawed one, granted. And to say this show is better than Homeland is not a knock on Homeland. Its more a sign of how good The Americans is.
I like The Americans better than Homeland also even though both have great characters and a great cast. Richard Thomas has come a long way from John-Boy Walton.
post #515 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgathright View Post

This one is still being recorded, but I have problems with it. I will watch episodes when there is nothing else to watch. I can't seem to enjoy a show where the bad guys are the main characters. I want them to get caught, killed or something else, but I understand that would end the series.
See, this is something I don't understand.

It was clear in the promotions leading up to the first episode it was about Russian spies working and living in secret in the US and they were obviously the main characters.

What exactly were you expecting?

It's one thing to like the premise and have hope for the potential of the show, but have issues with the acting or the specific plots of the episodes once you watched the show. It's a far different thing to not like the very thing that the show is built around.

You had to know this was what the show would be about. It's called "The Americans", spelled with a Russian symbol for the "c", not "Those FBI Guys Who Bravely Track Down Enemies of the Nation".

It's like watching a Fellini film and complaining there's too much sex.
post #516 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldcband View Post

This show is tedious.
There's one in every crowd...
post #517 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by slowbiscuit View Post

There's one in every crowd...
The only issue I have with the comment is the poster doesn't say why he thinks it's tedious. Obviously, most of us here disagree, so it might be nice to get his perspective. We're obviously not seeing things the same way.

He might as well have said "this show sucks" with no explanation.

I've always subscribed to the idea that if you're going to say you like or don't like something, you should say what you like or don't like about it. I've never felt it's necessary to always like stuff - just state why or why not so others can understand why you feel that way.

That's where a comment becomes discussion, rather than ambigious hate or blind adoration.
post #518 of 897
You could say a lot of things about this show, but I wouldn't think "tedious" would be among them. Moss doesn't grow on these characters. And if someone is looking for rah-rah jingoism he's looking at the wrong show. I suspect most of those folks have tuned out by now.

There's probably going to be a thaw in the cold war between Elizabeth and Philip, what with him letting her old lover and first recruit go. Gregory was loyal to the end. eek.gif

Wonder if there ever were any black American-born KGB agents or sleeper agents that were successfully relocated to Russia? Or any at all, for that matter? I would think it would be a lot more difficult for someone born and raised in America to start a new life in Russia than vice versa.
Edited by archiguy - 4/15/13 at 10:50am
post #519 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgathright View Post

This one is still being recorded, but I have problems with it. I will watch episodes when there is nothing else to watch. I can't seem to enjoy a show where the bad guys are the main characters. I want them to get caught, killed or something else, but I understand that would end the series.
Does that mean you didn't like The Sopranos either?
post #520 of 897
For the first 1/3 of this episode I was thinking they had finally made a misstep. Liz out for revenge and disobeying orders strained my suspension of belief. But as the story unfolded I realized why they had done it, and it was brilliant. This show takes risks and somehow pulls it off. I really like how Elizabeth took center stage this week and we got a glimpse of the human being behind the superspy...The confrontation with Philip in the motel room, followed by her meeting with her handler in the car showed both sides. She goes from almost fragile to tough as nails without missing a beat. KR has been amazing. Meanwhile on the other side, Stan's world continues to fall apart while he approaches a complete breakdown...I'm loving this show. smile.gif
post #521 of 897
good review of last night's show here..

The Americans, Season 1
A spy is like a dog—loyal, fierce, and obedient. As long as it respects its handler.

In Slate’s TV Club for The Americans—which was created by the Slate Group's editor-in-chief Jacob Weisberg’s brother, Joe Weisberg—June Thomas will IM each week with a different partner. This week she chats with Vanessa Parra, TV fanatic and daughter of Cold War-aficionado Cuban exiles.

June Thomas: Vanessa, I'm so happy to be chatting about yet another great episode of The Americans. I wanted to discuss the show with you because you love television, you’ve spent years working in human-rights organizations, and as a Cuban-American, you know a little something about people who have left their homeland but maintain a deep emotional connection to it.

Vanessa Parra: Thanks, June. The Americans is probably my favorite show on TV right now, so it's great to be able to obsess about it further.
Advertisement

Thomas: Let’s begin with the final scene between Elizabeth and Grannie. Russia might be a bear, but the Russians sure talk a lot about dogs—Zhukov used his own dear pooch to model loving, loyal relationships to Elizabeth; and last week Grannie described herself as a "guard dog." Dogs are also fierce, and they can sometimes turn on their masters. Is Elizabeth turning—or just standing up to a bad master?

Parra: I did a foreign-exchange program about 15 years ago in which I got to spend some time in Moscow, and I was struck by the loyalty people showed toward their dogs.

Elizabeth has always been a loyal German shepherd dog, but I wonder if the recent turmoil in her marriage, the loss of Gregory, and the death of a beloved mentor, Gen. Zhukov, has begun to break the fabric of that loyalty. She's a wounded pup right now, and wounded animals do dangerous things.

Thomas: It's striking that Elizabeth’s memories of Zhukov all seem to involve him advising her to let a little love into her life. It's as if thus far she has prioritized the part of her training that stressed commitment and tradecraft. Now she's in pain, and she suddenly craves love and connection.

Of course, Elizabeth wasn't the only character talking about family this week. Nina lured Stan back into her arms by supplementing old-fashioned seduction (points for knowing that putting on a bra can be as sexy as taking one off) with a reminder that she's all alone in the world. "I don't have anything anymore," she tells him. "No country to go back to. My family, I will never see again. I only have fear and you." That last sentence in particular was solid gold. Though I thought she rather gilded the lily when she added, "Family is everything."

Parra: That was such a great scene, particularly since in Episode 8 there was a lot of conversation about how taking pity on her was pointless, because she is a spy and this is what they do. Well, here you go.

It's interesting to compare the scenes in which Stan is arguing with his wife, Sandra, and when he's talking to Nina. One is fire, and one is ice, but they're both going to burn eventually.

Thomas: Being accused of being cold obviously cuts deep for Elizabeth. Patterson saves his own life when he yells: "You have no heart. No soul. No conscience. Your hands are covered in blood. Do you care about anything? Do you love anyone?" We've never seen Elizabeth so emotionally destroyed as after that speech. That's her Achilles’ heel, it seems.

And when Philip comes and finds her in that state, the thing that makes her so crazy is knowing that she lost control. "It's OK; it happens," he tells her. But she can't accept that and just walks away.

Parra: Patterson hit the jugular with that one.

In the end, though, I wonder if rather than Zhukov or Philip, it was thinking about her kids that set off that reaction. Paige and Henry’s response to the separation is so black and white. They blame her for being cold and intractable, and it clearly cuts her to the quick. After all, Zhukov was talking about how love evolves when you take care of something. That applies to the kids more than Philip.

Thomas: Yes, and I’m told that Malysh, the name of his beloved dog, literally means toddler in Russian, though the endearment is typically translated as baby. Either way, it evokes children as much as, if not more than, lovers.

Do you think she knew then that Grannie was playing her? That her loyalty was being manipulated? That her handler wanted her to disobey her orders?

Parra: I don't think it hits her that it's Grannie until well after she loses control. Had she known then, the response might not have been so visceral, so personal.

Thomas: I agree with Zhukov that learning to take care of someone or something is what makes us human. (Or as the song "Nature Boy" puts it, "The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.') He's right to stress longevity and patience, but by now Elizabeth and Philip have been in America for so long, perhaps they're learning to love it, too. Zhukov seems to be telling her the story to make her realize what's going on with Philip, but it's just as true of her relationship with America.

Parra: I think every character in the show has a relationship that is a metaphor for their relationship with America, and for Elizabeth, it's Stan's wife, Sandra.

Elizabeth always seems shocked by the sincerity and the openness that comes from Sandra. It throws her off her game a little. America is like that for her in some ways. It's taken a long time to take root, but it’s there.

Thomas: A few weeks ago, I said Stan Beeman was the most heartbreaking character on the show. I was wrong; it’s Sandra. Almost everyone else has a dark secret—that they're spies who've committed murder without a second thought, that they're having an affair, etc. Sandra, on the other hand, appears to be an open book. And yes, that does seem to throw Elizabeth. When Sandra asked her if she'd ever dated anyone from a foreign country, Elizabeth flinched in a very un-spy-like way.

Parra: Elizabeth always gives Sandra a wary eye but, of everyone Elizabeth talks to on a regular basis, her conversations with Sandra seem the most emotionally honest.

Thomas: Oh, we forgot another family reunion. Martha surprised Clark with a visit from her parents. How is he going to get out of that situation? Martha is providing him with such high-quality intel, he can't just disappear. But he is dangerously close to being exposed. (And speaking of exposure, it seems insane for Elizabeth to let Patterson go after he'd seen her face and heard her voice. The, wig, glasses, and scar aren't exactly an impenetrable disguise.)

Parra: Yes, meeting the parents! And what a slice of Americana they are. I can well imagine what would happen if I tried to spring that on a man. Let's just say I won't be providing surprise introductions to my colorful Cuban-American family anytime soon. Philip’s meeting the parents was a nice note of comic relief for the episode, even though it probably wasn't intended as such. Martha’s love for Clark does mean he probably gets higher-quality intelligence than he would otherwise, but I guess it means he's going to have to walk a very fine line in the interim. When that ship goes down, it will definitely be an episode to watch. Hell hath no fury ...

Thomas: Speaking of walking a line, Elizabeth needs to stay in control of her emotions around Grannie. It was one thing to beat her after the extreme provocation in Episode 6, but it seems ill-advised to threaten her again. Ticking off your handler is as dangerous as ticking off your hairdresser.

Parra: Maybe Elizabeth has ticked off her hairdresser, or at least the person who is in charge of the wigs, because the quality of the hair is very questionable at this point. I don't even want to know what the wigs are going to look like for the season finale.
post #522 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonwolf615 View Post

For the first 1/3 of this episode I was thinking they had finally made a misstep. Liz out for revenge and disobeying orders strained my suspension of belief. But as the story unfolded I realized why they had done it, and it was brilliant. This show takes risks and somehow pulls it off. I really like how Elizabeth took center stage this week and we got a glimpse of the human being behind the superspy...The confrontation with Philip in the motel room, followed by her meeting with her handler in the car showed both sides. She goes from almost fragile to tough as nails without missing a beat. KR has been amazing. Meanwhile on the other side, Stan's world continues to fall apart while he approaches a complete breakdown...I'm loving this show. smile.gif
Great episode! It was obvious Elizabeth went to Philip's motel room with beer in hand to ask him to come back home. Then, when he told her he had rented an apartment she was obviously shaken. I guess KGB agents were taught not to swallow their pride and apologize. smile.gif
post #523 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoilerJim View Post

Great episode! It was obvious Elizabeth went to Philip's motel room with beer in hand to ask him to come back home. Then, when he told her he had rented an apartment she was obviously shaken. I guess KGB agents were taught not to swallow their pride and apologize. smile.gif

I couldn't understand the apartment conundrum until I remembered that Elizabeth is emotionally incompetent. That's sort of the theme of the show for me - she is clueless because she was raised by the State to be clueless. Her blossoming will hopefully be the long-term theme here.

On another note - it's kind of obvious that if anyone is the "bad guys" here, the show treats the FBI as such. But of course, it's not about good guys and bad guys, it's just about guys, going where their motivation leads them, and that motivation is different for each main character.
Edited by fjames - 4/18/13 at 3:22pm
post #524 of 897
Another thought on last night's episode: When it was revealed that the kidnappers were a man and a woman, a light bulb clicked on over Stan's head.
post #525 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoilerJim View Post

Does that mean you didn't like The Sopranos either?

I did not watch a lot of The Sopranos, but what I did watch the show appeared to be more mob vs mob.
post #526 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoilerJim View Post

Another thought on last night's episode: When it was revealed that the kidnappers were a man and a woman, a light bulb clicked on over Stan's head.

And then he kinda seemed to say"nah..." But the seed has been planted and going by the previews will sprout roots next week.

Since gwsat pointed out the symmnetry of the storylines in each episode I've noticed it more and more. In this one I liked the contrast between Beth and Phillip in the motel and Stan and Nina's "breakup".On one side you have two people with genuine feelings for each other fumbling to reach an honest relationship, while the other is solely based on selfish needs and self preservation.Add in that Nina seems to have a much clearer vision of their relationship than Stan seems to, and things aren't looking too good for our FBI guy.
post #527 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoilerJim View Post

Another thought on last night's episode: When it was revealed that the kidnappers were a man and a woman, a light bulb clicked on over Stan's head.
Agreed
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonwolf615 View Post


And then he kinda seemed to say"nah..." But the seed has been planted and going by the previews will sprout roots next week.

Since gwsat pointed out the symmnetry of the storylines in each episode I've noticed it more and more. In this one I liked the contrast between Beth and Phillip in the motel and Stan and Nina's "breakup".On one side you have two people with genuine feelings for each other fumbling to reach an honest relationship, while the other is solely based on selfish needs and self preservation.Add in that Nina seems to have a much clearer vision of their relationship than Stan seems to, and things aren't looking too good for our FBI guy.

agree with this as well......

Its funny I was just coming on here to say what you posted, since he posted that, it finally "clicked" and I kept seeing the symmetry in this last episode. I may have to go back once the season is over and watch the episodes again, it has given me a new appreciation for an already great show......
post #528 of 897
The show is so wonderfully conceived, plotted, and performed it's difficult to find any nits to pick. However, I thought Elizabeth missed an opportunity to tell Patterson that it wasn't them, i.e. the KGB, who killed that scientist and those 3 FBI agents, the event (along with Amador's murder) which has set off this dangerous string of reprisals. That they had stopped the assassin, just not quite in time, but he's out of the picture now. Since she was so shaken by Patterson's accusations that she was going to let him go anyway, it seems like a missed opportunity to try and diffuse an increasingly volatile situation. And perhaps save her and Philip's lives down the line.
post #529 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

The show is so wonderfully conceived, plotted, and performed it's difficult to find any nits to pick. However, I thought Elizabeth missed an opportunity to tell Patterson that it wasn't them, i.e. the KGB, who killed that scientist and those 3 FBI agents, the event (along with Amador's murder) which has set off this dangerous string of reprisals. That they had stopped the assassin, just not quite in time, but he's out of the picture now. Since she was so shaken by Patterson's accusations that she was going to let him go anyway, it seems like a missed opportunity to try and diffuse an increasingly volatile situation. And perhaps save her and Philip's lives down the line.

One can hope the FBI would take it as an olive branch. It shows they can strike back but chose not to, in order to stop the escalation of the killings.That was not the intent of course, but the FBI doesn't know that.
post #530 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

The show is so wonderfully conceived, plotted, and performed it's difficult to find any nits to pick. However, I thought Elizabeth missed an opportunity to tell Patterson that it wasn't them, i.e. the KGB, who killed that scientist and those 3 FBI agents, the event (along with Amador's murder) which has set off this dangerous string of reprisals. That they had stopped the assassin, just not quite in time, but he's out of the picture now. Since she was so shaken by Patterson's accusations that she was going to let him go anyway, it seems like a missed opportunity to try and diffuse an increasingly volatile situation. And perhaps save her and Philip's lives down the line.
If Elizabeth had done what you describe then she would have let on / proven that there is a sleeper cell/KGB couple on US Territory . In other words blow the cover of Philip & Elizabeth
post #531 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastslappy View Post

If Elizabeth had done what you describe then she would have let on / proven that there is a sleeper cell/KGB couple on US Territory . In other words blow the cover of Philip & Elizabeth

The FBI already knows there are covert KGB agents operating on U.S. territory. They also know that word of the General's assassination would have quickly filtered down to those agents (that was the whole point). What they don't know is the identity of those agents, and they still wouldn't regardless of what Elizabeth told Patterson.
post #532 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

The FBI already knows there are covert KGB agents operating on U.S. territory. They also know that word of the General's assassination would have quickly filtered down to those agents (that was the whole point). What they don't know is the identity of those agents, and they still wouldn't regardless of what Elizabeth told Patterson.

So she should have said "We were going to kill the scientists but changed our minds, honest. And as far as the other guy, he's the one who drew the knife." It would have been a waste of breath, no one would have believed her. Its better the way they did it, sending the message "we can kill you anytime, we just chose not to."
post #533 of 897
.. I can see some interesting directions if the writers take them ...
For example .. the young Russian secretary/agent could evolve into a true serious double agent, & cross paths / work with Philip & Elizabeth, as well as both betray & work with the FBI/lover ...
post #534 of 897
Great episode last night, including Claudia ("Granny") and Elizabeth pretending to be Philip's mother & sister at his sham wedding to Martha, Elizabeth wondering what would have changed if she and Philip would have had a "real" wedding, Viola admitting that she placed the "bugged" clock on the bookshelf and last but certainly not least, Nina admitting that she was the mole and throwing herself on the mercy of her boss.

On a lighter note, as I was watching the first meeting of Elizabeth and Claudia in last night's episode, I had this weird thought that the wonderful Margo Martindale who plays Granny could be Marjorie Main reincarnated (except both were alive at the same time smile.gif). Both are MMs and if they ever do a remake of The Egg and I or other Ma & Pa Kettle movies, Margo would make a great Ma.
post #535 of 897
No light went off in Stan's head when he saw the sketches. Nina clearly wants to get even with Stan for killing Vlad, hence her offer to be a double agent. I can't believe how fast this season went. I anticipate a huge cliffhanger in next week's season finale.
post #536 of 897
Yeah nina is pissed he killed vlad and then lied to him about it too. She wants to burn him badly

Sent from my SCH-I405 using Tapatalk 2
post #537 of 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoilerJim View Post

On a lighter note, as I was watching the first meeting of Elizabeth and Claudia in last night's episode, I had this weird thought that the wonderful Margo Martindale who plays Granny could be Marjorie Main reincarnated (except both were alive at the same time smile.gif). Both are MMs and if they ever do a remake of The Egg and I or other Ma & Pa Kettle movies, Margo would make a great Ma.


"Hey Pa, want a taste of my special apple pie?"
post #538 of 897
I wonder what would really happen to that housekeeper if she called up the FBI and confessed to planting a bug for someone. Would she immune from criminal prosecution because of how she was compelled to do it?
post #539 of 897
Watched this week's The Americans and loved it, again. Poor little Martha! She loves Philip in his undercover incarnation but still knows that something is not quite right but love conquers all. Philip marrying the girl with Elizabeth as his "sister" and Claudia as his "Mother" (With a midwestern accent yet) was deliciously creepy. I also enjoyed Nina's decision to confess to her Rezidentura that she was the embassy mole. The girl is a natural born spy, not to mention survivor, so it's going to be fascinating to see how this plays out. Every one of the players in this delicious drama is part victim, part perpetrator. Great stuff!
Edited by gwsat - 4/25/13 at 7:43pm
post #540 of 897
I pegged Nina to become a double agent when Stan lied to her about killing the young KGB agent , as soon as she was promoted I knew she would fess-up because it was the smart thing to do .
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