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Tensions mount in "Dead Hand," an unusually fast-paced installment that barrels toward the show's seemingly inevitable endgame.
"Dead Hand" hits the ground running and set up a harrowing last leg of the journey.
A brisk episode called that deftly caught us up and set the show's end game in motion.
This seems to be the endgame for The Americans. It's no longer Philip and Elizabeth versus the world. It's Philip and Elizabeth versus each other.
Following a fifth season that pushed The Americans' slow burn to its limits, "Dead Hand" restores much of its power.
With Philip in retirement, the women lead the fight against the Americans, but the essence of this season premiere is that everything has become quite muddled.
One marvelous and heartbreaking hour into its 10-episode final season, a happy ending for anyone in the Jennings family seems so far away.
Watching The Americans in 2018 is a much different experience than watching The Americans in 2013 - not just because it's much better show than it was during that first season...
"Dead Hand" feels like a rush compared to even the most headlong seasons of The Americans. So much happens in this premiere.
Though it may have three fewer episodes to play with here in its final season, The Americans doesn't feel rushed - even with the giant three-year jump.
The Americans has always been a tragedy in the making... It was a bargain those watching entered into willingly, though knowing that does little to take the edge off a premiere filled with a deep sense of unease and even sadness.
The Americans has created a believable, lived-in, logical universe for itself. Now that logical universe has led to a logical conclusion - a conclusion that any entertainment-seeking TV fan would love to see.
Feels like this final season is barreling toward a grand Philip vs. Elizabeth showdown - and as much as I love them both, I can't wait to see how it all plays out.