THE AMERICANS Review: “The Day After”

0

The Americans Banner

Airtime: Wednesdays at 10PM on FX
Episode: Season 4, Episode 9 (S04E09)

TB-TV-Grade-B+

Tweetable Takeaway: All #TheAmericans tune in for the terrifying broadcast of the Nicholas Meyer classic, “The Day After”


gather around and watch “The Day After.” Back in 1983 it was common for the networks to produce a special television event. “The Day After” aired on November 20, 1983. This program was so important, schools designed lesson plans around it. Stanly Kubrick (overrated) directed a great movie about Mutually Assured Destruction, but it lacked the terrifying drama Nicholas Meyer (underrated) brought to “The Day After,” a story about surviving a nuclear exchange.

THE AMERICANS -- "The Day After" Episode 409 (Airs, Wednesday, May 11, 10:00 pm/ep) -- Pictured: (l-r) Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings, Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings, Holly Taylor as Paige Jennings, Keidrich Sellati as Henry Jennings. CR: FX

— “The Day After” Episode 409 (Airs, Wednesday, May 11, 10:00 pm/ep) — Pictured: (l-r) Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings, Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings, Holly Taylor as Paige Jennings, Keidrich Sellati as Henry Jennings. CR: FX

The Jennings, the Beemans, William, and just about everyone else important to The Americans watch the broadcast. Paige is terrified by what she sees. She asks her dad if things could really end that way. Philip explains the work he and Elizabeth do is to prevent that from happening. Philip really believes this. Oleg knows the situation is actually scarier than the television show. Recently, the antiquated Russian early warning system set off an alarm of five U.S. missile-launches that actually turned out to be the sun’s reflection off of clouds.

William is also weary of the Russian capability to handle dangerous material, like the latest deadly virus work out of Fort Detrick. He messages Philip and Elizabeth, but not Gabriel. He isn’t sure he should let the center know about the latest biological terror. Philip is okay giving the decision some time but Elizabeth is sure they should notify center. She reminds Philip it’s their to even the playing field for the Russians. She believes the DoD is develops these biological nightmares to use against the Russian people.

William doesn’t have the proper clearance yet. To get it, Elizabeth needs leverage against Don, Young Hee’s husband. Elizabeth takes one for the team, lures Don into her apartment, ruffie’s him, and makes it look like they had sex; leverage gained, friendship lost.

THE AMERICANS -- "The Day After" Episode 409 (Airs, Wednesday, May 11, 10:00 pm/ep) -- Pictured: (l-r) Noah Emmerich as Stan Beeman, Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings. CR: Patrick Harbron/FX

— “The Day After” Episode 409 (Airs, Wednesday, May 11, 10:00 pm/ep) — Pictured: (l-r) Noah Emmerich as Stan Beeman, Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings. CR: Patrick Harbron/FX

This was a strange episode. Aside from television event plot point, we see Elizabeth and Philip handle there time off differently. Elizabeth seems uncomfortable with slower operational tempo. Though she cries at the though of losing Young Hee as a friend, she seems determined to get back in the game. Philip, on the other hand, thrives in his vacation from espionage. He enjoys spending time with the kids, teaching Paige how to drive, and seems much freer, unlike William, who constantly feels the strain of his responsibilities. When, Stan comments that Philip has more energy. Philip says they unloaded some at work. Stan doesn’t understand how less money equals less stress. Philip says some aren’t worth the trouble.

Friction between Elizabeth and Philip makes this show interesting. The time and setting make it fun and compelling but at some point there will only be one dilemma standing, the choice between country and family. It’s always been Elizabeth stands by the motherland and Philip by his family. Some day he’ll have to choose between Elizabeth and the kids.

 TB-TV-Grade-B+

——————————————————————————

Eric lives in a world where the television is great, the smiles are warm, the pizza is hot, the puppies are playful, and the zombies are slow and meander while he reloads.
Twitter: @etom2012

Keep up with all Eric’s reviews here.
Follow all of our TV content here!

 | Contributor
Share.

Leave A Reply