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DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSbr8shhwCk

PREMIERES WED. FEB 26 @ 10 ET ON FX
Season 1 available on Amazon Prime
Special thanks to drunkill for providing the header images. Check his post below for more cool poo poo!


Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys play Elizabeth and Phillip Jennings, KGB spies posing as a married couple in Washington, D.C, circa 1981-82. They have children, they speak perfect unaccented English, and they have stable cover jobs as travel agents. By all outward appearances, they are the quintessential American family.

However, issues have arisen. While cold, distrustful Elizabeth remains loyal to the Soviet cause, Phillip has slowly become enamored with American culture and convenience. Meanwhile, their new neighbor, Stan Beeman (Noah Emmerich), happens to be an FBI counter-intelligence agent, and with the Soviet bureaucracy understandably seeing Ronald Reagan as a madman, the Jennings are being pushed into increasingly risky missions. If the Jennings want to make it through the Cold War alive, they have to be at the top of their game.

Unfortunately, after 20 years of arranged marriage, Elizabeth and Phillip have realized that they're in love with each other, which leaves them emotionally compromised and vulnerable to attacks from directions they've never considered before. Can they be loyal to each other while serving their country?




The series was created by novelist Joe Weisberg, working under the tutelage of Graham Yost (Justified). His impression of the pilot script was "annoyingly good." Also on the writing staff is Joshua Brand, co-creator of Northern Exposure, St. Elsewhere, Amazing Stories, and The White Shadow.




Background music, please...
  • Elizabeth was shot in the midst of an exfiltration after her mission went bad. Recovering from surgery, she tells Phillip to "come home" in Russian. (Phillip had moved out while the two of them tried to come to terms with their feelings for the other.)
  • FBI Counterintellgence has a rough sketch of the Jenningses in disguise; Stan would never look at it and go "oh poo poo," but it's enough for the Feds to close some of the precious distance between them.
  • The Soviet Embassy asset that Stan's been having an affair with, Nina (Annet Mahendru), has been re-doubled. She crossed back over because she (correctly) suspects Stan of killing her friend Vlad. (It was retaliation for the murder of his partner, Amador, who was accidentally killed in a fistfight with Phillip over Martha; see below). She was last seen handing KGB Resident Arkady (Lev Gorn) a file on Stan.
  • Elizabeth requested the reassignment of their handler Claudia (Margo Martindale), citing a lack of trust. Assuming her time in the States is short, Claudia murders CIA Hot poo poo Richard Patterson, avenging his assassination of General Zhukov.
  • Martha (Alison Wright), secretary to FBI Counterintelligence Supervisor Frank Gaad (Richard Thomas), is now married to one of Phillip's cover identities.
  • Phillip and Elizabeth's daughter Paige (Holly Taylor) has grown suspicious of her mother. While Phillip and Elizabeth lick their wounds in a back-alley hospital, Paige snoops around the laundry room, barely missing the hidden compartment where Elizabeth keeps memories of home.



Not much is known. To paraphrase Joe Weisberg, if season 1 was the story of a marriage, season 2 is the story of a family. This is further implied by the teaser above ("I hope the Russians love their children, too..."). There was also that BIG-rear end SPOILER from an ad that I'm assuming was redacted: It suggests that Paige and Henry get kidnapped early in the season.

Anyway, Susan Misner, Allison Wright, and Annet Mahendru have been promoted to series regulars. Despite starring in The Millers, Margo Martindale found some room in her schedule to reprise her role as Claudia for multiple episodes. As far as new characters go, there haven't been many announcements, but relative unknown Aimee Carrero will play a Sandinista freedom fighter.

Thanks to the writers keeping in touch through Twitter, Wikipedia has episode titles for almost the entire season:

1 - Comrades
2 - Cardinal
3 - The Walk In
4 - A Little Night Music
5 - The Deal
6 - Behind the Red Door
7 - ARPANET
8 - New Car
9 - ?
10 - Yousaf
11 - Stealth

And that's all I have for now. We're a week away, so feel free to get hyped and share whatever other info you've got.

DivisionPost fucked around with this message at 21:26 on Feb 22, 2014

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Narcissus1916
Apr 29, 2013



Season 1 definitely fluctuated in quality, but the last few installments were absolutely the equal of Justified, Breaking Bad, et al.

Here's hoping that they get a slightly better handle on Phillip and Elizabeth's relationship this time around, though. Last year it was a bit herky jerky, always pushing changes in the status quo without ever letting us feel the ramifications.

But drat, that's incredibly petty of me. Stan Beeman initially did nothing for me, and I thought the show was making a mistake spending so much time with him and the FBI. I was incredibly wrong.

grrarg
Feb 14, 2011

Don't lose your head over it.


DivisionPost posted:

Where did we leave off?

-Martha (Alison Wright), secretary to FBI Counterintelligence Supervisor Frank Gaad (Richard Thomas), is now married to one of Phillip's cover identities.
This is the plot thread I'm most anxious to see, even though it featured some of the most ridiculous scenes (and wigs) in the first season. How in the world is Phillip going to split his time, and what explanation will he give to Martha on the one side and his kids on the other? It cannot end well.

shizengiggles
Jan 5, 2014


LOVING THIS SHOW. Is this supposed to be a midseason show though, and if so, what is it replacing? Why is it not airing on the regular fall/winter/spring rotation like the other shows? Long breaks will kill it dead and pretty much no other network would pick this up.

Also I'm thrilled about the Margo news. The Millers is a really terrible show so I hope that business is concluded quickly and she can get back to screwing around with her operatives on this one.

DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


shizengiggles posted:

LOVING THIS SHOW. Is this supposed to be a midseason show though, and if so, what is it replacing? Why is it not airing on the regular fall/winter/spring rotation like the other shows? Long breaks will kill it dead and pretty much no other network would pick this up.

It's a 13-episode cable show, so "midseason" doesn't really have any meaning. The "break" was only a little longer than the traditional gap between cable seasons.

Now If you mean "Why didn't it start airing with Justified and Archer?" I don't think it's a coincidence that it's premiering the week after the Olympics conclude. Last year's live numbers sucked, but it got its second season rather quickly on the back of some HUGE DVR gains. So it was probably a matter of wanting to air this program uninterrupted, thus protecting it against viewer loss from abnormal breaks (unlike Justified and Archer, whose audiences are well established at this point).

BTW - This thread title was suggested by someone else WAY BACK at the beginning of the first season, and I never looked it up. I apologize to the guy I stole this from and hope to credit you real soon. :v:

EDIT #2: Mucktron, you're my boy!

DivisionPost fucked around with this message at 01:50 on Feb 20, 2014

Baronash
Feb 29, 2012

So what do you want to be called?


I really wish that "I'm not finished with them yet. They don't have to be regular Americans, they can socialists!" would fit as a thread title.

dreffen
Dec 3, 2005

MEDIOCRE, MORSOV!



JohnSherman posted:

I really wish that "I'm not finished with them yet. They don't have to be regular Americans, they can socialists!" would fit as a thread title.

That whole exchange had me chuckling when I saw it. "This country doesn't turn out socialists" seem to be the most current-time on the nose thing to say.

Also, excellent OP DivisionPost!

Lugaloco
Jun 29, 2011


Cannot wait for this to start airing again. With The Americans and Hannibal returning very close to one another it's going to be a great few months for drama.

Also wigs.

Junkenstein
Oct 22, 2003



If this has the sort of S1-S2 quality jump FX is known for, well, we're in for a hell of a ride.

Celery Jello
Mar 21, 2005


Slippery Tilde

Junkenstein posted:

If this has the sort of S1-S2 quality jump FX is known for, well, we're in for a hell of a ride.

Based on what little I've seen that seems to imply they're going to let the marriage of Elizabeth and Philip stick and move on to other things, I think it's highly likely that'll happen. Not that that plot was inherently a bad thing, or anything. It was just not handled with nearly as much subtlety as the rest of the show.

It felt like they were setting up the marriage's fixing by having Beeman's marriage start to fall apart. You'd need something to contrast that with or else the show just becomes Spies With Marital Problems Hour.

savinhill
Mar 28, 2010


Lugaloco posted:

Cannot wait for this to start airing again. With The Americans and Hannibal returning very close to one another it's going to be a great few months for drama.

Also wigs.

Vikings is back next week too.

raditts
Feb 21, 2001

The Kwanzaa Bot is here to protect me.




We need a moment of silence for Gregory.
RIP Gregory, you died doing what you loved... killin' cracka rear end cops.

grrarg posted:

This is the plot thread I'm most anxious to see, even though it featured some of the most ridiculous scenes (and wigs) in the first season. How in the world is Phillip going to split his time, and what explanation will he give to Martha on the one side and his kids on the other? It cannot end well.

Same with me. It's like the darkest sitcom plot I've ever seen.

CAPTAIN CAPSLOCK
Sep 11, 2001





raditts posted:

We need a moment of silence for Gregory.
RIP Gregory, you died doing what you loved... killin' cracka rear end cops.



I would've watched the spinoff where he tried to live in Russia as the only black guy for thousands of miles.

Baronash
Feb 29, 2012

So what do you want to be called?


e: nvm

Baronash fucked around with this message at 15:49 on Feb 21, 2014

Mu Zeta
Oct 17, 2002

Me crush ass to dust



I remember hoping Gregory could win or at least take out more dudes before going down but then I remembered he was killing cops. gently caress.

raditts
Feb 21, 2001

The Kwanzaa Bot is here to protect me.




Mu Zeta posted:

I remember hoping Gregory could win or at least take out more dudes before going down but then I remembered he was killing cops. gently caress.

There was no winning for Gregory. He knew that in the end, the Russians didn't give any more of a poo poo about him than America did.

UberAaron
Feb 11, 2007

by FactsAreUseless


I've been rewatching the first on Amazon. As Lugaloco said, between this and Hannibal coming back its going to be good times. I'm hoping for even crazier disguises on Phillip this season. :ussr:

Didn't I read somewhere that Claudia was going to be in all or most of this season? More Margo Martindale please.

td4guy
Jun 13, 2005

I always hated that guy.



Here's a quick promo video for season 2. Contains minor spoiler images of Phillip in peril, and discussion of what types of intel the Soviets are gonna uncover (last season being SDI/Star Wars).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ8W7y-04lU

td4guy fucked around with this message at 08:19 on Feb 22, 2014

drunkill
Sep 25, 2007

me @ ur posting


Fallen Rib

I'm so glad this is back.
I like the thread title too, Tusk was amazing in the pilot episode, great chase music.


Here are some images to spice up the OP. The main banner can replace 'What Is This?' while the he three custom headers can replace 'Who's Responsible?' 'Where did we leave off?' and 'What's coming up?' respectively.






And while we're at it, some of the official posters:





:krad:


Edit: No worries, I wouldn't have done the writeup half as good. Just wanted to help out a bit.
Edit2: I went ahead and made a cast banner, if you want to include cast pictures in the OP or not.

drunkill fucked around with this message at 17:38 on Feb 22, 2014

DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


poo poo, drunkill, you clearly would have made a prettier OP than I did. I feel terrible!

The YouTube was intended as the header image, so to speak, but I'll definitely use those subheaders. Thanks!

precision
May 7, 2006

hug your posting pals


I'm officially excited. :dance:

I'm going to replay Papers Please to get in the mood. The guy who made that missed a real golden opportunity to put the characters' names in the game.

DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


I don't know if a cast section is necessary, but I appreciate the effort anyway, drunkill. I did just realize that I left some potentially important information out regarding why Nina double-crossed Stan, so I went ahead and added that to the OP.

nooneofconsequence
Oct 29, 2012

she had tiny Italian boobs.
Well that's my story.



I am so excited for new wigs.

DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


Sepinwall's review is up and he's gone loving APESHIT for this.

quote:

"The Americans," FX's Cold War drama about KGB spies posing as a married couple in Ronald Reagan's America, had the poor timing to arrive as a very good new show near the start of what turned out to be an incredible year. Had it debuted in a different period even a year or two earlier it would have set a very high bar to clear for all that followed and been a constant point of comparison. But there was just so much quality TV in 2013 that it kept slipping behind other work, even though it had so much to recommend it. When I did my best-of rankings for the year, I wound up putting it 18th, simultaneously kicking myself for doing so while struggling to argue that I preferred it to the previous 17.

We're still pretty early in 2014, and who can say what the year (which has already given us HBO's mesmerizing "True Detective") will have to offer, but it's hard to imagine "The Americans" (which returns tomorrow night at 10) getting lost in the shuffle this time around. It's taken a major creative leap the kind that can elevate a show from a strong example of its era to one that transcends eras and as I barreled through the five episodes FX sent out to critics, I felt my pulse quickening in that way I want to feel so often in my job but so rarely do: when something good becomes something great.

precision
May 7, 2006

hug your posting pals


I am way beyond pumped now. gently caress yes.

DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


One more thing (first spoiler is very mild, second is vague):

quote:

Even a relatively minor flaw (if you can call it that) like the show's fans fixating on Philip and Elizabeth's wig disguises, to the point where undercover scenes became funny when they weren't meant to be, is solved with one swift, brutally elegant move in the season premiere. Without spoiling it, I'll just say that the minute it happened, I forever stopped questioning why those things never come off.

savinhill
Mar 28, 2010


I already thought this show was great, so for the second season to get that much better is awesome. Hopefully one of the reasons is more of the daughter's rivalry with that Lita Ford wannabe.

Baronash
Feb 29, 2012

So what do you want to be called?


They give out five episodes to critics? God drat, I need to learn to enjoy writing.

FuriousGeorge
Jan 23, 2006

Ah, the simple joys of a monkey knife-fight.

Grimey Drawer

Watching Keri Russell beat the everloving gently caress outta people kinda turns me on, so I hope there's a lot more of that.

Mu Zeta
Oct 17, 2002

Me crush ass to dust



You should watch Mission Impossible 3. Don't watch Austenland.

beanieson
Sep 25, 2008

I had the opportunity to change literally anything about the world and I used it to get a new av


Guys I'm so loving excited about seeing some crazy new wigs :haw:

FuriousGeorge
Jan 23, 2006

Ah, the simple joys of a monkey knife-fight.

Grimey Drawer

At some point Phillip is going to don a mustache so rapey he's going to instinctively kick the poo poo out of himself.

BigBallChunkyTime
Nov 25, 2011

Kyle Schwarber: World Series hero, Beefy Lad, better than you.



Illegal Hen

Does anyone know if the episodes will be available to watch on Hulu after they air on FX?

DivisionPost
Jun 28, 2006

Nobody likes you.
Everybody hates you.
You're gonna lose.

Smile, you fuck.


Retail Slave posted:

Does anyone know if the episodes will be available to watch on Hulu after they air on FX?

Unfortunately FX doesn't really play well with Hulu. You'll probably have to buy a season pass off iTunes or Amazon.

grrarg
Feb 14, 2011

Don't lose your head over it.


I watched the first season again over the weekend to get ready. I remembered the scene with Keri Russell rearranging Margo Martindale's face, of course, but I had forgotten the amazing scene the next time they meet, in episode 7.

Mags apologizes, saying she was just following orders. Elizabeth says she owes more than an apology. Then Mags takes her sunglasses off to show all the bruises. Elizabeth looks at her and says, "I'm sorry I didn't kill you. There, that's my apology." To which she coldly replies, "Better luck next time."

:drat: Such a great scene that was overshadowed in my memory by the beatdown scene.

raditts
Feb 21, 2001

The Kwanzaa Bot is here to protect me.




grrarg posted:

I watched the first season again over the weekend to get ready. I remembered the scene with Keri Russell rearranging Margo Martindale's face, of course, but I had forgotten the amazing scene the next time they meet, in episode 7.

Mags apologizes, saying she was just following orders. Elizabeth says she owes more than an apology. Then Mags takes her sunglasses off to show all the bruises. Elizabeth looks at her and says, "I'm sorry I didn't kill you. There, that's my apology." To which she coldly replies, "Better luck next time."

:drat: Such a great scene that was overshadowed in my memory by the beatdown scene.

I still say the scene where they hot-potato'd the hitman's bomb back over to him right before he detonated it was peak badassedness.

Mu Zeta
Oct 17, 2002

Me crush ass to dust



I like the scenes where the parents correct all the misinformation their kids have about Soviet countries/culture.

drunkill
Sep 25, 2007

me @ ur posting


Fallen Rib

"Yeah but Apollo 10 didn't land on the moon..."

Amusing that that scene had Thomas P Stafford visiting Henry's school, as he was apart of Apollo 10 and the first Apollo-Soyuz mission (which was painted in the background) the first time the USA and USSR worked together in space.

And then Elizabeth says "Well getting into space at all is very difficult" sure, the Russians never landed a man on the moon but they were winning the space race up until 1968.

beanieson
Sep 25, 2008

I had the opportunity to change literally anything about the world and I used it to get a new av


Any good video recap of season one?

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drunkill
Sep 25, 2007

me @ ur posting


Fallen Rib

FX have a ~3 minute recap of every episode up on youtube, here is the season final but you can find the rest on that channel
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKu4DrcJekQ

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