‘The Americans’ Anxiety Report: Philip Jennings Is A Broken Man

Editor-at-Large
04.19.18 5 Comments

FX

The Americans Anxiety Report is a weekly rundown of the people and things we are currently most worried about on the show. It will get weird because many of the people and things we will be worrying about will be tools in a plot to ruin America, put in motion by another country. Blame the show for this, not us.

10. The employees at Philip’s travel agency (Last week: 9)

Philip is a very good spy and maybe not a very good businessman. I don’t know for sure. Maybe he did everything right and just got hosed by timing. But whatever the cause, things are not great for the travel agency right now. Belts will be tightened. Positions will be eliminated. Cowboy boots will be boxed up and put away. No amount of cheesy bookstore motivational lessons can change that.

I feel bad for Rick. All those cruises sold for nothing.

9. Gennadi (Last week: 7)

Perhaps you’re looking at Gennadi’s place in this week’s rankings and saying to yourself, “Wait, how exactly did he fall two spots down the list after an episode in which we learned Elizabeth and the Centre are determined to assassinate him to avoid the shame of a hockey player from the Russian national team popping up in Time Magazine to talk about how great America is? Isn’t that worse than him just being, like, sad, like he was last week? It’s almost like there’s no logic at all being applied to these rankings, as though you’re just winging it based on gut feelings in the moments after each episode ends.”

Hmm. Maybe.

8. Kimmy (Last week: Unranked)

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Consider me extremely relieved that Kimmy appears to be in a better place after the three-year time jump. Philip’s missions with her always creeped me out so much even though Philip tried to be as honorable as one could be while platonically seducing a lonely teenage girl to get information from her well-connected father. But now the power dynamic is switched. She’s the confident one, going to Greece, telling him to go to Fiji, giving him life advice. It felt a little better. Still weird. But better.

But 10 cups of coffee per day is too many for a growing young adult. Dial it back, Kimmy.

7. Cute Brian from Sociology class (Last week: Unranked)

Oh man, Cute Brian is in so much trouble. He doesn’t even realize it yet. He thinks he just met a pretty girl from his class and the two of them hit it off after drinks. Cute Brian must be freaking jazzed. But while he’s sleeping, Paige/Julie is looking at his access badge the way a hungry guy looks at a plate of sizzling fajitas that are meant for another table, despite strict instructions from Elizabeth that she is not to mix sex and business, not yet at least, not that they ever do that kind of thing, okay maybe once, but those we rogue operatives who got in too deep, HEY PAIGE LOOK OVER THERE.

But yes, Cute Brian is hosed. Paige is gonna push too hard and screw it up and then Elizabeth will have to kill him. Rest in peace, guy.

6. Elizabeth (Last week: 8)

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Elizabeth now has a streak of four straight episodes where she’s had to kill someone because a mission got bungled.

Ep. 1 – Security creep who had Paige’s ID
Ep. 2 – General in the woods
Ep. 3 – Warehouse guy in hotel
Ep. 4 – Multiple security guards in the attempted sensor heist

It’s not a great run. Plus there’s the cyanide pill thing and the thing where Philip and Oleg are following her and the thing where she’s openly lying to Paige about the job and lying to her coworkers about who Paige even is and the thing where she’s smoking a pack a day of sad porch cigarettes and feeling “tired all the time.” Her biggest break this week was that her other mission — taking her “patient” out for a World Series party — went to crap without her having to kill anyone. She just ended up covered in vomit. Kind of a win, all things considered.

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