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TV Review: The Americans: 4.13 “Persona Non Grata”
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The Americans
Season 4, Episode 13 – “Persona Non Grata”
Directed by Chris Long
Written by Joe Fields & Joe Weisberg
Starring: Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys, Lev Gorn, Susan Misner, Costa Ronin, Keidrich Sellati, Holly Taylor, Richard Thomas, Dylan Baker, Alison Wright, Noah Emmerich, and Frank Langella
FX
Air date: Wednesday, June 8, 2016, 10pm

The Americans is a show that didn’t need to reinvent itself. After three superlative seasons, we had a rough idea of what we were in for with each installment, as by design, the show has always been structured to slowly ramp up its stakes as it went it along towards its already forgone conclusion “” it’s not entirely dissimilar from Breaking Bad in that way “” but this fourth season seemed particularly focused on disrupting the existing “home” viewers had found within the program.

And all it took was a vial.

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TV Review: The Americans: 4.12 “A Roy Rogers In Franconia”
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The Americans
Season 4, Episode 12 – “A Roy Rogers in Franconia”
Directed by Chris Long
Written by Joe Fields & Joe Weisberg
Starring: Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys, Lev Gorn, Susan Misner, Costa Ronin, Keidrich Sellati, Holly Taylor, Richard Thomas, Dylan Baker, Alison Wright, Noah Emmerich, and Frank Langella
FX
Air date: Wednesday, May 25th, 2016, 10pm

If pop culture and historical accounts (the ones that we know of at least) have taught us anything, it’s that the art of spying is tedious at best and hazardous at worst.

The Americans has shown us both sides of this equation, but “A Roy Rogers in Franconia“ delves deep into the dangers of spycraft as William (Dylan Baker) is tasked with obtaining another biological sample, and a tip from Oleg (Costa Ronin) gives Stan (Noah Emmerich) and the FBI just enough information it needs to get the closest they’ve ever been to catching Elizabeth and Philip (Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys).

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TV Review: The Americans 3.1 “EST Men”
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The Americans
Season 3, Episode 1 – “EST Men”
Directed by Daniel Sackheim
Written by Joe Fields and Joe Weisberg
Starring: Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys, Lev Gorn, Annet Mahendru, Susan Misner, Costa Ronin, Keidrich Sellati, Holly Taylor, Richard Thomas, Alison Wright, Noah Emmerich, Gillian Alexy, and Frank Langella
FX
Air date: January 28, 2015, 10pm

Spoilers for The Americans season premiere. You’ve been warned.

The Americans doesn’t waste any time in telling you what its third season is going to be about. In the opening seconds of the season premiere, “EST Men,” we see quick shots of Henry (Keidrich Sellati), Paige (Holly Taylor), and Phillip (Matthew Rhys). The shot is framed and lingers in such a way that it’s hard to notice Elizabeth (Keri Russell) in the tub off to the right of the screen until she slides into focus.

She takes a breath and then plunges underwater. It’s a quick calm before the storm. Our opening proves that more than ever, a dark tone of desperation and dread hangs over the show.

Welcome back to the fascinating world of The Americans.

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