It is official, I’ve fallen in love again with The Americans, but in all honesty I’d never really fallen out of love with it since ITV1 stopped showing it a few years ago. Recently, I finally twigged(bit of a technophobe you see), that I could watch this amazing US/Russian spy drama series once again via Amazon video. I have just finished watching season three and I am in awe at how impressive this show was. Superb, magnificent and utterly gripping, these words best sum up my total admiration for it.
If you have never come across The Americans before, then it is a US made spy drama series set in the early 1980s, located primarily in America, during the Cold War years. It focuses on the lives of a married couple who are KGB officers living undercover in America, called Philip(Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth(Keri Russell) Jennings. They have two children called Paige(Holly Taylor) and Henry(Keidrich Sellati). The other main protagonist is their FBI officer neighbour called Stan Beeman(Noah Emmerich).
Collectively speaking, the acting yet again in this third series was utterly superb. Indeed, I would go as far to say that the performance by Welsh actor Matthew Rhys, is one of the finest that I have ever seen in a drama. It is such a well-rounded, moving portrayal that he gives to us as Philip, which is coupled with the magnificent writing of the script. Actress Holly Taylor as Paige, needs a special mention in this review too because she was also exceptional. Paige’s curiosity, her bewilderment and her new mental torture, were all wonderfully captured by Holly.
Although some of the storylines were a tad tricky to follow in places, nevertheless every episode felt like a mini-film and a mini-masterpiece. You do have to give it your full attention but doing so is rewarded by witnessing marvellous acting and writing. The two backdrops to this series were the Russian war in Afghanistan and the apartheid regime that existed in South Africa. The former being particularly poignant to Philip, after we learnt that he had a son fighting over there as a Russian paratrooper.
I have never experienced a drama before that is consistently such an emotionally charged watch as much as this series was. By this, I mean that I was sat on the edge of my seat throughout the entire third season. This series was all about revelations. For example, we found out that Philip had another son. Whether Paige would find out the true identity of her parents was a constant theme that was beautifully and emotively played out. You sit there not knowing whether Philip’s and Elizabeth’s covers are going to blown in each scene that you watch, which thus really makes for some pulsating viewing.
The series ended with Paige, breaking a promise to her mum and dad, about not telling anybody about who they really were. Regarding Agent Stan Beeman, we saw his best efforts to free his former lover Nina(Annet Mahendru), come to an unsuccessful end. It was a great end to a tremendous series and now I can’t wait to get watching season four in order to find out what happens next. I have since read that the show will end in 2018 with a sixth and final series.
If you have never got into The Americans then I implore you to do so because it truly is one of the best TV shows around, thank you comrades! 5/5.