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“The Americans” Review/Recap: “A Little Night Music”

Emily Theytaz ‘17 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Margo Martindale and Keri Russell in The Americans episode "A Little Night Music." Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/FX.
Margo Martindale and Keri Russell in The Americans episode “A Little Night Music.” Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/FX.

On this week’s episode of “The Americans” we saw the end of a honeymoon period, the idea of religion affecting a family, the coming clean about an affair, and an ending featuring a sting gone wrong.

Let’s start with our favorite mini Sherlock Holmes: In last week’s episode, Paige (Holly Taylor) was on her road trip when she met Kelli (Lizzy DeClement) – who told her that if Paige ever wanted to get away or be with people who understood what she was going through that she should call her. So what did Paige do this week? She called Kelli, and while at first we all thought Kelli might bring Paige to the dark side and get her into drugs and alcohol, we couldn’t have been more wrong. Paige has found Jesus, ladies and gentleman. Yes, Kelli brought Paige to a youth church group.

Last week we saw Philip (Matthew Rhys) get mad because of Paige’s lying, and this week we saw Elizabeth (Keri Russell) get mad over religion. According to Elizabeth, religion is indoctrination. She even went as far as to quote Karl Marx by saying that religion is the “opiate of the masses.” Make up your mind Jennings. Do you want your daughter to be snooping around your laundry room hunting for clues or singing songs at church? Up to you. For now it looks like Paige has swapped her magnifying glass for a bible, and although Philip and Elizabeth might not approve of her saying grace before dinner, its better than her finding out they’re KGB spies.

Keri Russell and Jefferson White in The Americans episode "A Little Night Music." Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/FX.
Keri Russell and Jefferson White in The Americans episode “A Little Night Music.” Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/FX.

Speaking of people finding out the Jennings are KGB spies, Stan (Noah Emmerich) is in big trouble at work. Last week, he shot and killed a Soviet Embassy employee and spy, so now the FBI is being put under investigation. Bravo. Maybe it was because of this, though that he admitted to Philip that he was having an affair. Did he say he was having an affair with a soviet informant? Of course not, but it’s a step in the right direction. The second half of our least favorite duo was dealing with Oleg (Costa Ronin) the creepy guy who flirts too much with Nina (Annet Mahendru)– but turns out that Oleg has now received a much higher security clearance and is quickly making his way up to higher and better places. Nina looks like she’s starting to see Oleg as an ally and not as a negative force in her life so maybe when he finds out about her betrayal he won’t be so mad, then again, maybe not. Stay tuned in the coming weeks to find out if Nina gets exiled back to Russia.

Ah Martha (Alison Wright), the honeymoon period is definitely over for the fake couple. Although there was no real necessity for Clark and Martha’s “I can’t believe you’re always calling your mom when we’re cuddling in bed” fight it had a bit of a negative impact for Clark… I mean Philip… I mean Clark. Either one, it’s not looking good. Martha has to fill out a job application – the job Clark/Philip pushed her to take – and may or may not be about to throw him under the bus by putting his name down for the part asking her about her marital status. Having background checks done on a fake guy sounds like it’s about to get really problematic for Clark/Philip. If only he would answer her phone calls. In a way, we do feel bad for Martha. She thinks her marriage is real; she gets all the pain from it while Clark/Philip just uses her for information. Not caring about her feelings because he knows this will soon be over. That is about to end terribly for her.

Keri Russell and Margo Martindale in The Americans episode "A Little Night Music." Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/FX.
Keri Russell and Margo Martindale in The Americans episode “A Little Night Music.” Photo Credit: Patrick Harbron/FX.

Hey, remember last season when Philip and Elizabeth had their KBG supervisor torture them to make sure they weren’t rats in their own organization? Well she’s back this week! Yes, Claudia (Margo Martindale) is back. This time, because she too wants to find Emmett and Leeanne’s murderer. She gives them a lead, which has Elizabeth go undercover and seduce a shy navy guy to try and get Claudia’s target’s top secret file. At the very beginning of last season, we saw that Elizabeth was raped and in this episode she changed her story to be that the navy was covering up for her rape. The story worked and shy navy guy Brad offered to copy the target’s file. Only he backed out. For now. Elizabeth is cunning and a good liar so we’ll see if she can try and get Brad to overcome his fear next week.

The episode ended as the best episodes always do: with a cliffhanger. Philip and Elizabeth are given orders to seize a target called Anton Baklanov, a Jewish scientist who fled the Soviet Union. Only it wasn’t Anton Baklanov in the car, but two attackers, which led to hand to hand combat in which one of the attackers ran off with the Jennings car. Uh oh, only positive here is that maybe Philip will be getting the new car he wanted.

Overall Episode Grade: B+ 

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