Acclaimed FX spy drama “The Americans” will be given a fitting farewell at the Emmys this year, without the need for any collusion or Russian meddling in the voting process.
Although “The Americans” was a slow-burn at the Emmys to begin with, managing a total of five nominations over its first three seasons (including a guest acting win for Margo Martindale in 2015), it finally broke through in a big way 2016 with five bids, including for Best Drama Series, Best Drama Actor (Matthew Rhys), Best Drama Actress (Keri Russell) and a second consecutive win for Martindale. Last year, although it missed the cut in Best Drama Series, it racked up four big nominations, including for both leads, writing and Alison Wright taking Martindale’s place in Best Drama Guest Actress.
According to our combined odds, “The Americans” is currently sitting in seventh place with 10/1 odds in Best Drama Series, which bodes well for it to return to the drama lineup. It helps that two series nominated last year are out of contention (“House of Cards” and “Better Call Saul”). But also in the show’s favor is that the Emmys can be sentimental when it comes to swansong seasons of drama series already on its radar.
This year look for leads Rhys and Russell to return for a final shot for their work on the show. A potential spoiler in the wide open Best Drama Supporting race could be the overdue Noah Emmerich, who shines in the series finale as the ultimately defeated Agent Stan Beeman. Three-time Emmy winner Martindale is submitted in the Best Drama Supporting Actress category again this year, after being nominated four consecutive times (and winning in 2015 and 2016). She didn’t make the cut last year in the more competitive supporting field, but is a very good chance to return to the Emmys after having much more to do this final season. Also a possibility is fellow supporting player Holly Taylor, fantastic in the series finale as daughter Paige, who’s torn between her secret agent parents and her desire to stay in America with her younger brother, played by Keidrich Sellati.
Elsewhere on the ballot, a fourth consecutive writing bid for show co-creators Joel Fields and Joe Weisberg series finale “SMART” is almost guaranteed, as “The Americans” has been nominated in Best Drama Writing for the last three years. A possible first win in that category is also a real possibility. The show might also break into the directing category for the first time, with two submissions in contention; Chris Long‘s helming of the series finale and “The Great Patriotic War,” the fifth episode of the show’s final season (directed by Emmy vet Thomas Schlamme).
FX last night telecast the series finale of its much-lauded thriller The Americans, ending the story of Philip and Elizabeth Jennings, two KGB spies posing as Americans in suburban 1980’s Washington, D.C., that began six years ago. No one was more surprised by the events of the ending than Keri Russell, who had no idea throughout the run of series how the couple’s story might conclude. “One thing I’ve always loved about the series is [being] continually surprised, in a good way; always being surprised by the turns and twists as they never bored by me,” she revealed during a post-mortem conference call for the series. “I had no idea what was in store. The way the season was going, by the third or fourth episode I thought they were setting [my character] up to die. She was so unlikable and could never redeem herself — but I was on board for whatever they wanted. I’d kind of grown accustomed to trusting them and not guessing because I’ve always been so far off. I didn’t know how it was going to go at all. [Warning: The rest of this column contains spoilers about the series finale.]
“All of [the final] script surprised me,” she continued. “I had no idea they’d take such an emotional route of devastation [with their] kids. I did not see the Henry (Keidrich Sellati) aspect coming at all and that was just devastating to me.” The writers’ decision to have the couple lose custody of their children indeed blindsided the actress. Continue reading Keri Russell On the “Surprising” End of FX’s “The Americans”
When we first meet Elizabeth Jennings — the highly trained Russian spy hiding under the cover of a perfect American family with her husband, Philip (Matthew Rhys) — she is unlike herself. At a loud bar, over a cocktail, she works a government agent several notches below her cunning and spiky beauty. She wears a leather bustier and a flirty, salacious demeanor, her chestnut tresses hidden under a full platinum blonde bob. This first scene has the sort of slinky sexiness and allure I’ve come to expect of an espionage drama. As The Americans continued, soon to finish with its currently airing sixth season, it has leaned as far away as possible from the glossy pleasures you’d expect from its first scene into something wholly harder to shake. As Emily Nussbaum wrote in The New Yorker, “Dread is its specialty and also its curse; it’s what makes The Americans at once a must-watch and a hard sell.” Continue reading The Delicate Fury of Keri Russell on The Americans
“His life was full of loneliness.”
That’s what Claudia told Paige in the second episode of The Americans’ final season — titled “Tchaikovsky” — when she played a record of the Russian composer. And those words turned out to be hauntingly true as the series reached its conclusion tonight.
The final episode was ironically named “START,” after the nuclear arms treaty that would ultimately be signed by the Soviet Union and the United States, although the summit was not addressed in the show. Instead, we saw Philip and Elizabeth’s flight from everything they’ve known, everything they’ve built. They lost one child. Then both of them.
And yet, in the last image of them together, looking at the cityscape of Moscow, what were they doing except starting over, truly? They were home. But they were strangers. They were together. But their shared life was now hollowed out, filled with loneliness.
To American viewers, rooting for Philip and Elizabeth had the thrill of cheering for the bad guy, but they always believed they were doing the right thing, even when that meant doing unsavory things. Their goal, their ideals, their pledge, was noble. And in the end, by betraying The Center and protecting Gorbachev, they fulfilled their promise. Continue reading The Americans finale recap: The truth comes out — shattering the Jennings family
Showrunners Joel Fields and Joe Weisberg speak to The Hollywood Reporter about the big moments in the 90-minute episode as FX’s Cold War spy drama comes to an end.
[This story contains spoilers from the series finale of The Americans]
Philip and Elizabeth Jennings (Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell) left the United States and returned to their native Russia in the series finale of The Americans on Wednesday night.
But in a tragic twist, the Russian spies, who’d spent years posing as an American couple living outside of Washington, D.C., had to leave their children behind. The pair early on made the decision to let their son, Henry (Keidrich Sellati), who didn’t know his parents’ true identities, stay in the U.S. But eldest child Paige (Holly Taylor), who had entered the family business this season, spying alongside her mom, was set to make the trip with her parents before she suddenly left the train they were on. The moment was a shocking one for Elizabeth, who throws herself at the window of the train when she sees Paige still on the platform as the train pulls out of the station, and Philip. Continue reading ‘The Americans’ Bosses Break Down “Tragic” Series Finale
After six years and 75 episodes, The Americans has wrapped its final chapter. Ever. This past season has been a tour de force of acting and pitch-perfect narrative arcs—cementing The Americans as one of the most important prestige television shows of our generation. And it all comes down to two people: real-life couple Keri Russell (Elizabeth Jennings) and Matthew Rhys (Philip Jennings).
Continue reading The End of The Americans: Keri Russell’s Last Stand
Spoiler Alert: The following postmortem contains details about tonight’s series finale of The Americans on FX Continue reading What Happens Now To The Spies Next Door?: ‘The Americans’ EPs On Mindblowing Series Finale