Wednesday, June 8, 2016

TV Show Review: The Americans (Season 4)

The long fourth season of The Americans came to a close tonight. There were plenty of twists and turns throughout the season and several departures from major characters. Many critics have dubbed this show one of the best on television but I've always found it a little slow for my taste. I've stuck with it this season just to see what happens, waiting for the payoff that shows like Dexter got completely wrong and Breaking Bad did so well.

The breakout performance of this show is Alison Wright as Martha Hanson, the secretary to the FBI Director and love of the mysterious Clark. Clark is Philip Jennings of course, the brilliant Matthew Rhys has done a great job showing how torn Philip is with the decision to inform Martha of who Clark really is and execute the orders from the center. 

The other storyline that will stay with me for the rest of the year is the fate of Yung Hee played by Ruthie Ann Miles. Keri Russell's Elizabeth became fast friends with the cover of a pyramid scheme-like makeup sales opportunity. Elizabeth works her way into the family only to get to her scientist husband Don, played by Rob Yang.  The seduction and betrayal actual take a toll on Elizabeth who has been so coldhearted throughout the show.

Paige played by Holly Taylor continues to get herself into sticky situations. The Jennings handled Pastor Tim and his pregnant wife by calming them, instead of their usual method of murder and disappearance. Paige has also struck a relationship up with Stan Beeman's son. Stan played by Noah Emmerich is an FBI agent investigating Russian spies so it is getting complicated though nothing pops off by the end of this season.

There is so much more to this show like Frank Langella's Gabriel, the Jennings new handler. He has a lot on his hands as the couple has increasing problems and deals with dangerous bioweapons. The Russian embassy has a plot line that always makes me watch to read the subtitles but nothing about Arkady played by Lev Gorn and Oleg played by Costa Ronin has brought me in since Nina Krilova, played by Annet Mahendru, made her unceremonious exit.

I need to go back and catch all the episodes of the first season. I think this will help me engage with the characters a bit more. I was hoping for something but the biggest reveal of this finale was Philip's long lost son finally getting out of prison. I'll just have to wait until next year to find out what happens. I believe there are only two seasons left before The Americans closes out with a series finale! 

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