The Americans recap: ‘IHOP’

We open on a subplot that has largely shifted to the background: pot-smoking teen Kimberly, and her father – the head of a CIA group specializing in Afghanistan.

Philip is still nursing her as an unwitting contact, and that recorder of his remains lodged in her father’s attaché case.

We haven’t really spent much time with him directly, but here we see him getting a report about some act of bloody violence. Cut to Kimberly’s birthday, and Philip cutting a cake. Talk gets a little wistful – getting older, having a family. Not screwing up.

This has been on Philip’s mind a lot. He actually has multiple families to screw up now.

One of them involves Tuan, the Vietnamese refugee who is posing as their adopted son in an operation against the Morozov family. “Does Tuan ever say anything about any girls to you? I just think he’s lonely,” Elizabeth says. She’s planning to go spend the night at their house with him. Give him a sense of belonging.

Just then, they get a call: It’s the Center, with a “doctor’s appointment” for Philip. One of Gabriel’s other operatives needs to report some information.
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The Americans: 5×10 – Darkroom & 5×11 – Dyatkovo Press Release

5×10 – Darkroom

Paige’s snooping leads Philip and Elizabeth to make a choice that could shift the balance of their lives forever. Stan and Aderholt’s recruitment of Sofia suddenly bears fruit.

5×11 – Dyatkovo

A surprise assignment from the Centre divides Philip and Elizabeth, forcing them into a moment of profound crisis. Stan gives Henry a tour of the FBI ?? but will he see too much?

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The Americans recap: ‘Immersion’

Last week’s episode of The Americans is tough to top. It was the best of the season, and led to a new theory about how Oleg Burov may fit into the overall Elizabeth/Philip puzzle.

This one has more tension than some previous episodes, but it returns to place-setting for action that may take place in the final episodes of the season.

Philip returns home after learning about his father, who was a guard at a brutal prison camp. Gabriel said goodbye by informing him that maybe recruiting Paige was not a great idea.

She has been staring across the street at Matthew’s house after breaking up with FBI Jr., and Philip tells Elizabeth he questioned Gabriel about Stan Beeman’s new girlfriend, Renee. Is she a KGB operative, sent to get close to the counterintelligence officer?

(SIDE NOTE: I may have a new piece of evidence to back up that theory, but that will wait until the end of this recap, since she wasn’t even featured in this episode.)

Gabriel said he didn’t believe she was, then suggested Philip was losing it.
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The Americans recap: ‘The Committee on Human Rights’

The problem with finally opening up and being honest is discovering all the past betrayals of someone you trusted. This episode of The Americans has apparently sent KGB handler Gabriel on his way, but his final line to Philip is simultaneously a refreshing moment of candor and a knife in the heart. Now he tells him?

This episode also opened up potential for a theory that would have colossal ramifications for the show — and could indicate how two disparate story lines may eventually converge. But we’ve got to save that for the end of the recap.

We open in the safe house where Paige has just been invited to meet with Gabriel, her mother and father’s longtime handler, who is soon to depart and retire. “I can’t tell you, Paige, how much I’ve been looking forward to this day,” the old man tells her.

Her questions are simple. They’re treating her like an adult, but the things she wonders are childlike: “Are you a spy?”

“Yes,” Gabriel says. Smiles all around. It must be a pleasure to finally just say it out loud.

“I know it’s been a difficult time, Paige, finding out your parents have withheld things from you,” Gabriel says. “To you they’re just your parents. They probably drive you crazy, because they have driven me crazy from time to time. But to us, they’re honestly heroes. They’ve saved a lot of lives.” Continue reading The Americans recap: ‘The Committee on Human Rights’

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