Does 'The Americans' Season 2 Live Up To The First? The Critics Say: Yes!

Returning to a series that has enjoyed a strong first season is always a risk: expectations are doubled, and the job of pleasing fans increasing exponentially the further you go on; the further you desensitise them from what you have to say. The Americans, which is primarily a drama about relationships and marriage while the backdrop of war and espionage provides its steely edge, premiered last night on FX with its second season, and re-enters a TV space filled with stern competition. But if the critical response is anything to go by, it’ll soon become one of the most talked about shows of 2014.

Matthew Rhys Keri Russell The AmericansKeri Russell [L] and Matthew Rhys [R] in 'The Americans'

“FX's The Americans does the near-impossible of making viewers cheer for Russian spies in America and at the same time for the American FBI agents who are trying to unmask those Russians living in suburbia. It's an incredibly deft balancing act that's accomplished through strong character development all around,” writes Rob Owen of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Uncle Barky’s Ed Bark is also impressed: “Based on these first five episodes, The Americans shows every sign of maintaining if not exceeding the high bar it set in Season 1. What fate awaits Elizabeth and Philip? And what will become of their children, whether or not they ever learn the truth?” he writes.

Matthew RhysMatthew Rhys in 'The Americans'

“As the new season begins, this series continues to be among the best of the extraordinary number of great TV dramas vying for attention,” says Joanne Ostrow of The Denver Post.

“The series is at its most potent when it reframes the everyday in the context of the Cold War, like Philip comparing notes on home life with a Mossad operative or Elizabeth displaying a flash of vulnerability in front of a government-contracted dupe,” writes Erik Adams of The A.V Club.

Keri RussellKeri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings in 'The Americans'

 

Finally, Variety’s Brian Lowry suggests: “Series creator Joe Weisberg--who wrote the Thomas Schlamme-directed season premiere along with Joel Fields--and company have done about as well as is possible in keeping the plates spinning while adding new ones to the act. Even so, it’s hard to escape a sense that if this series runs much beyond a second season, it’s less about serving up art than it is about bowing to the needs of old-fashioned capitalism”

Overall, am 89/100 rating on Metacritic sees The Americans take the ‘Universal Acclaim’ pendant and then some. Well worth a watch and a worthy adversary to HBO’s True Detective and Netflix’s House of Cards, it would seem.

Noah Emmerich Stan BeemanNoah Emmerich as Stan Beeman in 'The Americans'


Contactmusic

Tags: Keri Russell - Matthew Rhys - Noah Emmerich

Advertisement

More Keri Russell

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

Director Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) ramps up this reboot franchise with a strikingly well-written action-drama, which takes an unusually complex route through the story. By refusing...

A Week In Movies: Gibson's Major Award, Special Screenings In New York, Set Photos From London And Three Big Trailers

This is a week when most attention was on the sporting world, with the Wimbledon finals, the Formula One British Grand Prix and the Tour...

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Trailer

In a post-apocalyptical Earth inhabited by only the few humans who survived the viral pandemic that wiped out most of human civilisation less than ten...

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Trailer

Caesar was the world's first genetically modified ape, who was more than let down by his supposedly caring human conterparts as he grew older and...

Advertisement

Rihanna Bares (Nearly) All In Sheer Dress At 2014 CFDA Fashion Awards - Part 2

Rihanna stole the show at the 2014 CFDA Fashion Awards in a sparkling mesh dressunder which her modesty was preserved solely by a G-string. She...

'Chef' and Our Five Other Favorite Films About Food

Jon Favreau’s new film Chef was released last weekend to nearly unanimously positive reviews. Gary Goldstein of the Los Angeles Times raved, “Favreau is flat-out...

Danny DeVito Looks Cheery At The Paley Center For Media Presents: 'Fargo' - Part 5

'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia' star Danny DeVito is seen looking cheerful as he arrives at the Media Presents: 'Fargo' event at The Paley Center...

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Trailer

Earth has become a post-apocalyptic nightmare inhabited by the few survivors of a virus that plagued the globe nearly ten years ago, affecting only humans...

Advertisement

Comments

Keri Russell Newsletter

Subscribe to this news alert service to receive news and reviews on Keri Russell

Unsubscribe | Unsubscribe All