Coming soon to our television screens is the espionage spy drama The Americans, starring Brothers and Sisters alum Matthew Rhys and Felicity star Keri Russell.
Set during the Cold War era in the early 1980’s, The Americans follows Philip and Elizabeth Jennings (Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell) who are undercover Soviet intelligence agents from the secretive Directorate S of the KGB sent to the U.S. 15 years ago to work deep cover in Washington, D.C. Their assumed identities are a married couple who run a travel agency, and even their own children Paige and Henry do not know their secret. Things for Philip and Elizabeth become more tense as FBI Counter-Intelligence Agent Stan Beeman (Noah Emmerich) moves in across the street with his family.
Right from the go, The Americans plunge us into the deep underworld where Philip and Elizabeth are on a mission with Timochev, a Soviet defector they had abducted to send back to the Soviet Union, who stabs a third deep-cover agent working with them during the kidnapping. This opening scene is fast paced, gritty and dark, and offers us a side to both Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell that most will never have seen before.
But, don’t be fooled by this opening scene. The Americans is not a high action series. It’s a deep and intense look at two Russian spies struggling with personal issues, dedication to their mission and honor to their country all while trying to remain undercover and away from the prying eyes of the FBI. The pilot episode can feel somewhat slow in parts and a little dragged out. I blame this on the high octane of that opening scene.
So, is it worth watching?
I say yes. Even though this show feels like it could have been a perfect fit as mini-series more-so than an ongoing serial and even if it doesn’t sounds like your type of viewing, still give it a shot. There is some action, sex and drama. It’s the 1980’s, so expect ‘interesting’ choices of wigs and fashions for both leads as they go about their undercover work….in the end, It’s that type of show where the heroes your’e rooting for to come out on top, are also the villains.
The Americans will premiere on Channel 10 later this year. In the US, the show will have it’s second season premiere, Jan 20th 2014.
- TV: Interview: The Americans’ Matthew Rhys on playing a deeply emotional KGB operative (avclub.com)
- Matthew Rhys on ‘The Americans’ And His Sexy Undercover ‘Staches (huffingtonpost.com)
- Keri Russell in ‘The Americans’ (manilastandardtoday.com)