This show should have been great. But unlikable characters and shoddily composed story lines have caused it to fall far short of its promising potential. I love a good anti-hero story, but I simply could not bring myself to root for Elizabeth and Philip. Elizabeth, a supposedly brilliant secret agent, is blinded by her own brainwashed upbringing/training to the point of annoyance. She refuses, for instance, to let her daughter go to church camp because "that's how they get indoctrinate them when they're young"-- does she seriously not pause for a moment to contemplate how old SHE was indoctrinated? Really? The story lines are imbued with a darkness reminiscent of a Breaking Bad or Fargo, but without any of the redeeming qualities that would render the show worth watching.
This shows great premise is completely squandered by the poor, incoherent writing. Somehow they've managed to blow a great love story between two likeable leads within the first several episodes and it continues to devolve into a soapy mess.
I guess all this fascination with this series has a lot to do with being American. Even though I can appreciate the craftsmanship in the writing, directing and acting of it, and even though I appreciate the historical context being woven into the action, I must say that I am quite disappointed about the main characters' "vibes": there is hardly anyone to like (or even to hate, for that matter). The acting is fine, I guess (and I am especially fond of Nina, Stan Beeman and Claudia - but the leads are still somehow dull and robotic, even. - But maybe that's what life as a spy inmidst enemy territory does to you.
I was not aware of this show until fairly recently, as I pay little if any attention to the FX channel. Though I had not seen any of the first two seasons, I decided to try watching season 3. I found that I could pretty much follow the story and plot despite not having seen what preceded it.
But after two episodes I am "turned off' of this show. Graphic explicit simulated(?) sex scenes in one episode, and showing a woman sitting on a toilet bowl urinating in a second episode, are highly repugnant. Whether the producers/directors/writers were trying for "shock value" or they wanted to show how "liberated' they are from having to observe conventional decency is irrelevant. Those scenes displayed an extreme lack of good taste.
This is a shame because the story is intriguing (no pun intended) and the characters both interesting and well written. It would have been enjoyable to continue watching the show. Instead, I will not bother with it any further and will go back to ignoring the FX channel.
I've tried to like this show, but there is something not right about it. I thought after three episodes I should have been hooked - I wanted to be hooked, but I found myself trying too hard to make it work. Something disingenuous about it, can't put my finger on it. Production value is good, direction is good, acting isn't bad, it's when you assemble the whole package, just doesn't work.
I really like the show and have been watching since day one. Sometimes the writing is too obvious when you know whats going to happen ahead of time when Keri and Matt's character are taken and beating up in a basement. Seen that a mile away! Besides thinking about that time when all clandestine Russians must have rank, so when Keri beats up her boss, its like a captain beating up a colonel or major and that just does not go away.
My wife watches too and her only problem is why the FBI guy who may be a great character, but is really ugly for him to have a young gorgeous wife and in the last episode fools around with the beautiful Russian. C'mon, he doesn't have the looks, personality or NOTHING!!. My wife says if she was the Russian, with not only fooling around with her old boss and now the FBI guy, she is definitely better in the GULAG!
I had high hopes after the first few episodes. However, as is increasingly prevalent, writers get lazy and, when they can't think of any REAL plot lines, resort to the simpering, whiney, oh-so-emotional soap opera shit.
Grow up ....... get off your butts ....... write something INTERESTING.
i didn't pay attention to the intro so i didn't see that it started in the 80s and i never caught on, so when the went back to 1960 whatever i assumed i was watching what was going to be Fringe's i saw the TVs lol.
this show seemed like it could be more gritty more feels like they are holding back in places and letting fingers up butts in other wasn't sure what to expect. but all in all a pretty good it, like follow the stupid style that other shows like walking dead and game of thrones have where it answers your questions in the leaves u with a cliff hanger at the show keeps a steady pace of suspense, drama and i like how in the back of my mind once i realised that it was in the 80s that this show doesn't need future spin offs but rather just shift into the future and have the kids in office or something... they are already dropping hints to the son that its enough to just get into Space which could have room for fan fiction which keeps most shows alive these days.
I keep on seeing ads for the americans and paid em no mind, but i didnt realize the show is on FX.
Fx is one of the best networks on tv. It has had the best tv series overall hands down. So i'm gonna have to watch it. The reviews here say its great but i'm not really surprised. This is should be interesting.
Ok I watched a few episodes and this show pretty much continues that trend. I'm hooked, awesome edgy thriller , love the cold war 80's setting , interesting talented and diverse cast, great storytelling. hell its the same old thing. The Americans is excellent and FX is the best network on tv. 10 stars for the americans and fx
"Phillip" and "Elizabeth" complicated relationship is what I find so interesting, Elizabeth finally feels passion for Phillip but after he sleeps with his old girl friend and lies to her about it, and finds out, she just cuts him off, I hope they get back together.
The show has way too many characters to have a big impact. There are countless FBI, Russian, whatever spies now that I have to get a pen and paper to keep track. No good or bad guys, am I suppose to root for Russia or USA. This show has probably got good reviews due to being off the beaten path. The most overrated show on TV.
FX- you killed off " The Bridge" and let this garbage go on! How bad is that.
Easy to follow, many twists and turns that keeps the excitement and some killer episode endings that keeps you awake at night and counting hours until the next episode will air. Kerri is great! (Wondering why she hasn`t been in more shows. ) Was a little skeptical in watching a show taking place in the 80`s, but I was only positively amazed to see what spy kits they had that time. Will definitely follow this show till the end.
Provocative story line which really gets you thinking about war, enemies of the state, and what that means. Excellent performances by Keri and Matthew, who play the married couple in truly remarkable fashion. I love the constant plot twists that you don't see coming.
I just came on to take the trouble to say this is a a great show. Intelligent and realistic. Kudos to the writers and all involved. Dont screw this one up and make sure there will be more seasons. Notwithstanding some valid points made by Howard Berger below in comments. Still a great show.
I really like this show and have enjoyed every episode so far. Love Rhys -- he was wasted in "Brothers and Sisters," a mush of sentimentality that wasted the talent of wonderful Rachel Griffiths and everyone else involved. I also like Keri Russell. There is a lot to be quarried from this story-- but I can't find out whether there were spies from Russia in real life in the 80s in Washington and all over the US. I understand there was a spy scandal recently, but how accurate is "The Americans?"
In any case, I love it, and would like to see it go on for as long as it can.
Truly impressed with this show from the authentic early 80s cold war feel and scenery to the high caliber acting top to bottom through the cast. I loved - LOVED - the setting of the pilot to Tusk by Fleetwood Mac and the wrap of the last episode to Games Without Frontiers by Peter Gabriel - that was some serious editing GENIOUS you just don't see on TV very often anymore. Really looking forward to S2.
I thought this was a great introduction for this series. The backdrop of Washington DC with Regan as president and the Cold War heating up is a great setting. The characters and their motivations seemed belaivable. The flash back scenes were well done and served to give back store and some context for the characters actions. Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys are seem to work well together on screen. Looking forward to seeing more.
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