Tag Archives: The Americans Podcast

James Heinzen

WTA 102- James Heinzen Interview

This hiatus is unbearable tovarischi! To help tide you over we have a surprise for you: an interview with modern Russia scholar Professor James Heinzen from Rowan University! Jim talks with us about his background, how he got interested in the USSR, his time in the Soviet Union, and how amazingly realistic the portrayal of corruption is in the Oleg/Igor storyline in Moscow!

We love to hear your thoughts about The Americans so please send them to us! You can email text or audio feedback to watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or signal us (we have replaced the operator!) at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. Please like us on our Facebook page Watching The Americans. And if you do enjoy the show, kindly rate us or better yet rate and review us in iTunes!

 

The Magic of David Copperfield V: The Statue of Liberty Disappears

WTA 52- Feedback for The Magic of David Copperfield V: The Statue of Liberty Disappears

What an emotional plane ride this week for Martha as we fly 7 months into the future! This week we are talking The Americans Season 4 Episode 8 “The Magic of David Copperfield V: The Statue of Liberty Disappears”, which aired May 4, 2016. It was written by Stephen Schiff and directed by series star Matthew Rhys.

This is Episode 52 and contains our history, tech of yesteryear, and feedback segments. Please check out Episode 51 to get the news and our episode breakdown and analysis.

Learning history involves reading, and we join Philip with the book Est (Erhard Seminars Training : 60 Hours That Transform Your Life) by Adelaide Bry before learning about the Afghan city of Herat. Next we are off to the movies for a double feature of Tender Mercies and The Outsiders then while we head home to watch David Copperfield do some magic we put on our Walkmans and listen to “End of the Line” by Roxy Music. Maybe we should stop and play some Putt-Putt (aka Miniature Golf) if we have the time! Amazingly we have no tech to report on, so it’s straight into your thoughts and ideas in some amazing feedback!

And we do love to hear your thoughts about The Americans so please keep sending them to us! You can email text or audio feedback to watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or signal us (we have replaced the operator!) at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. Please like us on our Facebook page Watching The Americans. And if you do enjoy the show, kindly rate us or better yet rate and review us in iTunes!

One Day in the Life of Anton Baklanov

WTA 30-Season 3 Episode 11 One Day in the Life of Anton Baklanov

This week’s episode of The Americans allows us to breathe a bit after last week’s shocking revelation. A bit! It is Season 3 Episode 11 entitled ”One Day in the Life of Anton Baklanov” written by Stephen Schiff & Tracey Scott Wilson and directed by Andrew Bernstein. The original air date was April 8, 2015.

In this episode, more and more pressure mounts as Martha expresses worry over her interview with agent Taffet. Paige continues the adjustment into her new reality. Gabriel informs Elizabeth that her mother is close to death, which prompts Phillip to lobby for a visit. As Elizabeth is making strides on one front, at the hotel; she’s hit with an untimely ultimatum from Lisa’s husband. Anton Baklanov slips further into Nina’s emotional grasp.

We have a couple of items in the news for you. The Atlantic believes the long-anticipated revelation has reinvigorated The Americans, and Vox states that The Americans is on one of the best runs of episodes in TV drama history!

Cool history and tech await us this week! We begin with Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s compelling novel One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, then we take a look with Agent Gaad inside the FBI Vault – Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility, and we lament the demise of the United States Football League with Oleg and Tatiana. In tech of yesteryear we swing a pulwar, and then we check into that hotel with its fancy EECO hotel management system.

We love to hear your thoughts about The Americans so please send them to us! You can email text or audio feedback to watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or signal us (we have replaced the operator!) at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. Please like us on our Facebook page Watching The Americans. And if you do enjoy the show, kindly rate us or better yet rate and review us in iTunes!

 

Do Mail Robots Dream of Electric Sheep

WTA 27-Season 3 Episode 9 Do Mail Robots Dream of Electric Sheep

We have a surprise for you this week! Our good friend Kathleen Lewis joins us as guest host for this week’s breakdown of The Americans latest episode entitled ”Do Mail Robots Dream of Electric Sheep?”. It was written by Joshua Brand and directed by Stephen Williams. The original air date was March 25, 2015.

In this episode, Elizabeth tries to dismiss Hans, who has other ideas. He kills Todd and asks Elizabeth to take him back. Martha gets it together and tries acting as if things are back to normal with Clark. She tells him the FBI mailbot is being repaired offsite. Gabriel sends Philip and Elizabeth to bug the FBI mailbot, and they are discovered by the owner of the repair shop. Elizabeth forces her to commit suicide. Stan and Oleg act like buddy cops in an ill-advised and convoluted plan to secure Nina’s return. Philip confronts Gabriel, telling him that he will protect his family because no one else will.

The better this season gets, the more the press is talking about it. There were so many great stories about the show, starting with Slate on why the Hula-Hooping girl in Kimmy Schmidt’s credit sequence looks so familiar, then New York Times ArtsBeat revealing why

you should trust the organization, and ScreenRant’s opinion that ‘The Americans’ is better than the alternatives. We follow with Indiewire’s fascinating review of this week’s episode, Inquisitr’s report that Harrison Ford’s film ‘Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?’ is set for 2016 production, and we wrap up with Grantland’s piece Crime and Punishment: ‘The Americans’ Soars in Its Brutal Third Season.

In our history segment we read Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, and mark our place with Post-It Notes. For tech of yesteryear we debate whether Henry is playing Coleco Football or Tandy Electronic Football II.

We love to hear your thoughts about The Americans so please send them to us! You can email text or audio feedback to watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or signal us (we have replaced the operator!) at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. Please like us on our Facebook page Watching The Americans. And if you do enjoy the show, kindly rate us or better yet rate and review us in iTunes!

 

3x03OpenHouse copy

WTA 21-Season 3 Episode 3 Open House

Adventures in dentistry await you in this week’s all-new The Americans entitled ”Open House”. It was written by Stuart Zicherman and directed by Thomas Schlamme. The original air date for the episode was February 11, 2015.

After the ratings news bummer last time, there is reason to feel better via Deadline with the DVR numbers added in for last week’s show. We also get the ratings from this week from Headlineplanet. There are a couple of neat stories, one from Hitfix with a Keri Russell interview, another interview via Vulture with director Thomas Sclamme and the story behind The Americans’ excruciating, beautifully shot tooth-pulling scene, and we wind up with both TVLine eyeing the return of Claudia and the Dallas Morning News teasing Margo Martindale is returning to The Americans.

Tonight’s episode starts with Philip at Gabriel’s apartment, playing a game of Scrabble. They discuss Paige’s future, with Philip arguing for her to choose her own path and Gabriel assuring that she will. Gabriel warns Philip about their recently selected CIA target Ted Paaswell being someone under observation and to be careful. Elizabeth and Philip remain very distant with one another while having another discussion about Paige. They later spy on Paaswell and plant a bug on an early cell phone he has. They follow him to listen to his conversations, and Elizabeth realizes they are being followed by the CIA. Philip escapes and gets Elizabeth help. After a harrowing chase, she returns home in severe pain and Philip takes action to relieve it. He revisits Gabriel who warns him off Paaswell for now, but Philip and Elizabeth tail him again and make a startling discovery.

In our history segment, we learn econ with Sir John Richard Hicks and Evgeny Evgenievich Slutsky, see the cover of Time Magazine from November 22, 1982, get more econ via the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, and try to unwind with a friendly game of Scrabble. In our technology of yesteryear we make a call with a Bag Phone and watch an old-timey TV Sign Off.

We love to hear your thoughts about The Americans so please send them to us! You can email text or audio feedback to watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or signal us (we have replaced the operator!) at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. Please like us on our Facebook page Watching The Americans. And if you do enjoy the show, kindly rate us or better yet rate and review us in iTunes!

 

2x13Echo

WTA 14-Season 2 Episode 13 Echo

In this week’s Watching the Americans, we are amazed by the Season 2 finale of The Americans with Episode 13 “Echo.” This mind-blowing and very satisfying episode was written by Joel Fields and Joe Weisberg and it was directed by Daniel Sackheim. The original air date was May 21, 2014.

In the news, we recap the uptick in the finale ratings and agree with The Wire’s “Wig of the Week” selection. We link to a gallery of Season 1 wigs and a story on screeninvasion.com on why The Americans is the best drama on TV. We also find out there is a great charity auction to raise money for the poor that has one prize we would love – a visit to the set of the Americans in Season 3!

For the episode discussion, we see the payoffs for all the action in Season 2. Stan makes a decision while Nina’s fate hangs in the balance. Fred gets the paint for Stealth and pays a steep price for it. Larrick at last makes his move and sets up a classic confrontation with Philip and Elizabeth at the cabin. We learn the identity of the Conner family’s killer, and we see where Jared will end up. Paige takes part in a demonstration that could foreshadow her future. Finally, a familiar face returns and gives new shocking orders to Philip and Elizabeth, who must decide whether or not to follow them.

In our history segment, we rock with Golden Earring and their classic 80s cut Twilight Zone, visit Cheyenne Mountain, and learn about Civil Disobedience/Nonviolent Protests. During tech of yesteryear we boot up a floppy disk, see an EMP grade hardened safe, and sport a Smith & Wesson Ladysmith.

We love to hear your thoughts about The Americans so please send them by emailing text or audio feedback to watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or calling us at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. Please like us on our Facebook page Watching The Americans.  And if you do enjoy the show, please rate us or better yet rate and review us in iTunes!

2x11Stealth

WTA 12-Season 2 Episode 11 Stealth

In this week’s exciting Watching the Americans, we decode The Americans Season 2 Episode 11 “Stealth.” This dark episode was written by Joshua Brand and it was directed by Gregory Hoblit. The original air date was May 7, 2014.

In the news, we review the latest ratings and dispute The Wire’s “Wig of the Week selection.” We talk about Time’s article that features The Americans’ showrunner Joel Fields aboutwhy there’s so much rape on your favorite TV shows. We also reveal from This Week what The Americans gets wrong about Russian spies, share an LA Times interview with Matthew Rhys, and mention his appearance on the Today show and his knowledge of the 80s TV show “The A-Team.”

In our episode discussion, we talk about the word “Stealth” and how much it permeates this episode. In the Soviet Union we see what Anton and Vasili have been doing about Stealth technology. Philip befriends someone who may have crucial information about how to create key components of Stealth. Elizabeth once again confronts Paige about her involvement with the church and makes a surprising decision. Arkady pushes Nina to step up her efforts with Stan, and she makes a desperate plea for Stan’s aid. Stan and Sandra reach a an emotional abyss. Larrick returns and has a violent confrontation with Kate. Elizabeth visits Jared and witnesses an unexpected encounter. The Jennings discover that something is very wrong and must protect Jared.

In our history segment, we go to Vietnam and learn about the Battle of Hamburger Hill and the notorious gangster John Dillinger. During tech of yesteryear we take off in an SR-71, and learn how to use a one-time pad to make unbreakable codes.

We love feedback so please send in your thoughts about The Americans by emailing us watchingtheamericans@gmail.com or calling us at 919-907-0542. Follow us on Twitter @WatchAmericans. And don’t miss our brand-new Watching The Americans Facebook.