We interrupt our regularly scheduled program for an important announcement: The third season of The Americans has concluded, and writing about it has consumed too much of my time this week. The last two Spontaneous Quixote columns were analyses of The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) and The Mark of Zorro (1940), and this week’s column was supposed to compare and contrast the two protagonists from those films to see what they reveal about the culture from which they came. However, that third part of my Robin Hood and Zorro essay is being delayed yet again. Yet, even the interruption of the plan plays into what I said this column would be about back on February 5, 2015 when the first Spontaneous Quixote column was published. As the title clearly indicates, my column is based on some degree of spontaneity—such as interrupting a planned multi-part piece and going off on another tangent before getting back to the plan at some point, but a return that should incorporate aspects of the divergence in the way that a be-bop jazz musician performs his “improvisational” compositions. I also stated the following in that first column: . . . writing this column is some sort of quixotic mission that I am on. The obvious question is, “A quixotic mission to do what exactly?” I have only a vague notion of the “mission” in my head—and, hopefully, the nature of the quixotic mission will emerge as columns start accumulating. Several columns have been about what movies and television shows tell us about how we have lived, and are now living, our lives. However, analyzing shows regarding how humans live their lives isn’t much of a “mission”—let alone one that’s “quixotic.” The “mission” is to see if the way we live is worthwhile or flawed. Changing our collective ways as a culture is not easy, as these cultured ways of life develop through social forces that are largely out of the control of individuals. Still, each person needs to decide for himself or herself about whether aspects of the culture are worthwhile or flawed—and what to do about the flawed aspects. The essence of this “quixotic mission” is evident in my Robin Hood and Zorro essay that I will return to, but it is also evident in my analysis of the finale of the third season of The Americans. In a way then, this week’s column isn’t a departure from the plan. Rather, it’s an improvisational exploration of a variation on the theme that will eventually loop back to the other paraphrases of the theme phrase. Each of Us Leads a Secret Life Without dishonesty entering into the discussion, I doubt anyone in the history of humanity has ever been entirely open about every aspect of his or her life. We each live our lives to various degrees of honesty. However, even the hypothetical “completely honest person” who “never tells a lie” still decides what to reveal to other people and what to keep to himself or herself. Some thoughts and emotions are too “private” to share with anyone—or at least that is how we regard such thoughts and emotions: they are “too private” to be shared. Thus, each of us leads a “secret life” to some extent. In that way, The Americans is about all of us—not all of us Americans, but all of us humans. As an espionage soap opera set in the Cold War era during Ronald Reagan’s first term as President, The Americans is positioned perfectly for the development of its leitmotif of “secret lives and open lies.” The season finale (3.13, “March 8, 1983”) is constructed around this motif in many ways, and it’s interesting to imagine in what way the various plot lines would have ended had this episode been the series finale the season seemed to be headed towards rather than the season finale it ended up being after the show was given a stay of execution a few weeks earlier. For the past seven weeks, a few of the plot lines didn’t seem to be heading toward any sort of resolution at all. For instance, after four consecutive episodes in which Kimberly Breland (Kimmy) had a significant role in the ongoing story (episodes 3.03 to 3.06), the character has mostly disappeared except for a brief appearance in episode 3.10. It seems the probability of Philip having sex with a 15-year-old girl (only one year older than his daughter, Paige) must have become too hot of a plot point for the network. However, before Kimmy’s story was essentially dropped, Philip was told he would need to retrieve the cassette tape from the recorder in her house once a week—which means Philip is still seeing Kimmy at least once a week. Essentially, her “secret life” with Philip has become such a secret that viewers are no longer allowed to know what’s going on with that plot line. Inconsequential Confidences, Inconsequential Promises Meanwhile, back in the USSR, Nina has managed to get Anton Baklanov to confide in her. He has been sharing aspects of his life because he feels he can trust Nina now that she has confided to him that she was assigned to be his assistant so she could “spy” on him. She also gained his trust after telling him she will not report the epistolary story he has been writing to his son—the story she found in the letters hidden in his mattress when she searched his room while he was working. Yet, what really seems to have convinced Anton he could trust Nina was when she told him about her own problems with the Soviet government and how much she loved the United States. She also told him that she doesn’t want to spy on him and reveal things about him to her handlers—that she doesn’t want to keep “buying back” her life by carrying out these assigned tasks. After confiding her sentiments to Anton, Nina’s facial expression displays vulnerability and a sense of melancholy. It’s a face that could make someone—particularly a man whose hormones are raging—want to hold her in his arms and shelter her from the cruel injustices of the world. However, Anton doesn’t take Nina in his arms. Instead, he follows the advice he offers her on how to remain free from manipulation. Earlier he told her, “They only have my body; you understand” (implying they do not have his mind, or his thoughts). Now, as Nina’s looking vulnerable after confiding such a huge “truth” to him, Anton tells her the first step in keeping others from controlling or manipulating her is to refuse everything they offer . . . “especially the things the body cries out for.” Nina certainly seems sincere in her desire to be free from being manipulated by the Soviet government. However, if she doesn’t give them what she has been assigned to provide—usable information about Anton—she will remain in prison. However, if she does provide them what they want, she will be “buying back” her life; she will be released from prison (if they comply with their side of the arrangement). While everything Nina told Anton about herself is the truth, those aspects of her life are obvious; she didn’t actually “reveal” anything to him: It’s obvious Nina has her own problems with the Soviet government; she’s in prison. It’s obvious she’s been assigned to spy on Anton; she’s his “assistant” even though she knows nothing about the science he’s working on, and he does not actually require an assistant to do the science he’s working on (and she has obviously not been assigned to have sex with him as other women previously were). Even the promise of her freedom (or other benefits) can be inferred from her situation of being a prisoner who has been assigned to spy on Anton; he even admits that he assumed she was promised her freedom for spying on him. Thus, Nina has not actually opened up to Anton about anything that wasn’t already obvious. Yet, regardless of the obviousness of the situation, Anton begins to trust her because she confided information to him, and she looked vulnerable while doing so. Additionally, just as she did not confide anything to him of actual consequence, Nina did not promise him anything of actual consequence. She promised not to report the letters Anton has been writing to his son, but it’s an empty promise. If Nina discovered the letters so easily during her quick search of Anton’s room, then government agents who must also be performing regular searches of all of the prisoners’ rooms have certainly discovered and read Anton’s letters already. Nina does not need to report the letters; the government already knows he’s writing them. They haven’t done anything about Anton’s epistolary story because the letters are of no consequence if they are never read by anyone outside the gulag. Ultimately, while I believe she is sincere about not wanting to keep “buying back my life,” I don’t believe Nina won’t keep doing it. I doubt anyone in any culture in history would be happy about having to buy back his or her own life, but people will do it if given the opportunity to buy back their own lives rather than remain oppressed and exploited by others. When she was assigned to spy on Anton in exchange for her freedom, Nina was told she was chosen for the task because she had demonstrated an ability to get people to trust her and tell their secrets to her. She demonstrated that ability with FBI agent Stan Beeman in the United States, and with her cellmate Evi Sneijder in the prison she was previously in. Now she has manipulated Anton into trusting her—not by offering him something that he could refuse to take, but by simply confiding inconsequential information and making inconsequential promises. If the series had ended with this episode, it seems likely Nina would have reported on Anton to her handlers. She may have even given them his letters to serve as tangible evidence of her betrayal of Anton’s trust. As it is, I still suspect Nina will betray Anton. I also suspect she will not be given the freedom she was promised—that she, too, will be betrayed by the man who promised her this freedom (who, double ironically, was once either her husband or lover). However, we will have to wait for next season to see what happens with this plot line. Opening Ourselves Up to Judgment The fact Anton is willing to be open with Nina after she reveals nothing of consequence to him underscores a related theme in The Americans—that people “secretly” want to be entirely open with each other; it’s liberating. If people could be entirely open with each other about all aspects of their lives, it would be a completely liberating experience. For instance, at an EST meeting on open sexual expression that Philip attends in this episode, one male participant stands up and tells his EST colleagues: I know I’ve dishonored my word . . . and my marriage vows, but . . . being here in this room with people who aren’t judging me . . . just makes me realize in my gut . . . my body belongs to me. He is opening up about his marital infidelity to an audience that won’t judge him (at least not openly) because they, too, are at the EST meeting to be open about their own sex lives. This male participant in the EST seminar echoes and contrasts Anton’s earlier statement about the Soviet’s only having his body. For Anton, the expression of freedom is not the fulfillment of sexual urges (denial of “the things the body cries out for”), it is the sanctity of this own mind rather than the sanctity of his own body. Anton’s view is a reflection of Thomas Paine’s notion from The Age of Reason: “My own mind is my own church.” However, despite the efforts of EST and other self-help groups, fear of judgment (and the consequences of those judgments) still keeps people from being entirely open with each other about all aspects of their lives. Even the most virtuous person who harbors no dark thought nor hides any secret deviance may fear being judged as too bland or too virtuous. Ultimately, the problem isn’t that we lack a desire to be open with each other; the problem is what the man at the EST meeting indicated it is: We fear being judged for being who we are. Of course, the degree of judgment (and the degree of penalty) depends on the magnitude of the information being revealed. Personal revelations that society has deemed unlawful or immoral will cause harsher judgments that might result in imprisonment, lawsuits, ostracization, et cetera. However, revelations of basic thoughts and emotions may bring about lesser judgments that could result in the loss of relationships, being passed over for promotions, et cetera. Such “lesser judgments” may not result in legal actions or ostracization, but they can cause isolation and a sense of failure. An example of basic thoughts or emotions that may bring about judgment if they are revealed are the lustful urges Philip and Elizabeth’s son, Henry, is hiding. He cuts out pictures of lingerie models from catalogs that he then keeps inside a box that he hides in his closet. Notice all the symbolism with “box” and “closet.” Henry’s not gay, but he’s still boxing up his sexual urges and hiding them in the closet. The darker secret Henry hides in that box is the photograph of Sandra Beeman dressed in a bikini top. He stole the photo when he broke into the Beemans’ house last season. Henry is correct in believing he would be negatively judged if he openly acknowledged that he covets his neighbor’s wife (though Paige discovered her brother’s secret one evening when she entered his room without knocking and found him ogling the picture). Even Henry’s Marxist, secular humanist parents would negatively judge him for coveting Stan’s wife—not because he’s breaking one of the Mosaic codes, but because he would be openly admitting sexual urges that make them uncomfortable. However, Philip might only feign a negative judgment while being secretly supportive of son’s sexual urges. These “secret lives” can become boxes inside of boxes after a while—all of which we then hide within our closeted selves. Additionally, in 2015 there is an even greater fear of judgment for being open about one’s sexual urges than there was in 1983. Whether justified or not, people (mostly men, but sometimes women, too) may now fear accusations of “sexual harassment” for any indication of “inappropriate” sexual interest—with inappropriate being a subjective term that can cause a conscientious person to err on the side of caution rather than risk his or her lustful interest in another person. Revealing our thoughts and feelings (sexual or otherwise) may result in feeling miserable about ourselves in some way because of how we are judged for “being ourselves.” At times, we may even hide our own thoughts and feelings from ourselves to some extent—which is what Philip seems to have done due to his training as a KGB agent. However, he is at least in the process of trying to open up to himself; opening up to others is a distant goal at this point. As we saw in the first episode of the season, Philip started attending EST meetings with Stan to provide a type of “moral support” while Stan attempted to reconnect with his estranged wife, Sandra. Eventually, Stan stopped attending EST because he thought it was “bullshit,” and because Sandra didn’t come running back to him once she learned he was attending EST. Stan wasn’t interested in using EST as a self-help tool as much as he was interested in using it as a way to get Sandra to not file for divorce. Once she filed for divorce, Stan stopped going to EST. However, as we discover in this episode, Philip has continued to attend EST meetings for a reason that has not been made clear. His interest in EST probably has to do with some dissatisfaction in his marriage and his realization (perhaps) that he is in love with Martha (his “other” wife). Whatever the reason, Philip attended two EST meetings in this episode, and he saw Sandra Beeman both times. As I mentioned earlier, these particular seminars focus on removing constraints that prevent full enjoyment of sex; they are about people being open with their sex partners regarding their sexual desires. The seminars advocate the opposite of Anton’s advice of “turn[ing] down everything they offer you. Especially the things the body cries out for.” After the first seminar, Philip asked Sandra to not tell anyone he was there. There is a sense of irony in someone being asked at an EST meeting to keep a secret, and it obviously bothered Sandra that she was asked to not be open and honest—though she did agree to keep Philip’s secret. However, a double irony then comes into play at the second EST meeting when she asked Philip not to say anything to Stan about her sexual honesty; she didn’t want to give Stan a false hope of marital reconciliation. After the second seminar, Sandra asked Philip why he was attending these seminars on sex training. He said it had nothing to do with his sex life with Elizabeth, but that he didn’t really know why he decided to attend the sex seminars.* Their conversation eventually leads Sandra into making a proposal to Philip: Sandra: No, yeah, I get it. The sex part’s not really about the . . . sex, as they’ve been saying, but . . . it’s about everything . . . learning how to be open . . . really knowing yourself; someone really knowing you. Philip: Yeah, yeah. Sandra: I’m not sure (long pause) . . . anyone in my life has ever really known me. (Another long pause, while Sandra looks uncomfortable for admitting that no one has ever really known her) What about you? Has anyone ever really known you? Philip: Elizabeth. Sandra: Does she know you’re here? Philip: Nope. I kinda waited till she was out of town. Sandra: I understand. It’s hard. Philip: Yeah. Sandra: (hesitating) You know this is . . . maybe . . . this is going to sound a little crazy, but in . . . don’t take this the wrong way . . . but . . . what if . . . as long as we’re in this seminar together . . . what if . . . you and I agreed to just . . . tell each other everything. No secrets . . . just . . . like an experiment. Philip: I don’t really know if I can do that. Sandra: I don’t know if I could do that either (long pause) . . . but it would be a good thing to have. (Another long pause) It would be scary, maybe . . . but good. (Another long pause as they realize they are the only EST attendees still in the room; the others are all part of the hotel’s janitorial staff.) Philip: I’ll think about it. Sandra: (Disappointed in Philip’s lack of enthusiasm). Hmmm. Okay. Obviously, despite the benefits of being entirely open about all aspects of life, Philip cannot realistically consider Sandra’s proposal because he is a KGB spy, and because her estranged husband is an FBI agent who is working in the counter-espionage division. Sandra is likely to “judge” Philip for being who he is, and the result would be either life in prison for Philip or death for Sandra since he would have to kill her to protect himself. Meanwhile, Stan is facing problems of his own after he opened up about the secret (and unsanctioned) operation he had been running with Oleg Burov. In his attempt to prove that supposed Soviet defector Zinaida Preobrazhenskaya is actually a spy, Stan was able to get Oleg to discover and then admit that Zinaida is a Soviet agent. Stan now has the evidence he needs to arrest Zinaida and ask the government to exchange her for Nina. However, Stan’s plan fails when his boss, Frank Gaad, accusationally asks him if he was the one who planted the electronic listening device. After Stan answers “no,” Gaad announces that he has recommended Stan be terminated from his job as an FBI agent. Gaad also tells Stan the government is not going to exchange Zinaida for Nina; the Soviet Union is holding a CIA agent who is more important than Nina, and the CIA wants their agent to be traded for Zinaida. It appears Stan’s career in the FBI has ended—and, if “March 8, 1983” had been the series-ending episode, his career might well have been over. It’s possible that with his divorce from Sandra and the subsequent loss of his job with the FBI, Stan may have become self-destructive—turning to either the slow suicide of alcoholism or the quick suicide of firing a gun into his mouth. However, because the series has been given a reprieve, the Deputy Attorney General of the United States prevents Stan from being fired. He likes Stan’s initiative and his ability to achieve results by avoiding bureaucratic red tape, so he’s giving Stan unrestrained authority to go after the Russian “Illegals”—the elite KGB officers in the US (such as Philip and Elizabeth). Everybody Lies, Paige, It’s . . . a Part of Life Two clichés come to mind with the direction that Paige’s plot line has taken this season: Ignorance Is Bliss Be Careful What You Ask For Either of those clichéd expressions could have served as a heading for this section of the column about the third season finale of The Americans. A few episodes back, Paige demanded to be told the truth about her parents’ lives—because she was in agony over not knowing their secret. However, the agony she felt at that time pales to what she has felt since learning her mom and dad are as American as limonnik.** Keeping her parents’ secret has been exceedingly difficult because Paige believes in being open and honest about everything—or at least that’s what she believes she believes in being. She seems to be an example of that “most virtuous person who harbors no dark thought nor hides any secret deviance.” However, she’s actually not as open and honest as she thinks she is. For instance, Paige has not told her parents her views on Soviet-American relations, nor her views about the Marxist attitude towards religion. Thus, her supposed “openness and honesty” is not an honest representation of her life. Yet, she is clearly struggling with her own lack of openness regarding her response to her parents being Soviet spies. As they returned from West Germany after visiting Elizabeth’s dying mother, Paige attempted to open up about her agony, but Elizabeth didn’t really want for Paige to open up about her feelings: Paige: I don’t know . . . if I can do this, Mom. (Pause) I don’t think I can do it. Elizabeth: What? Paige: Go home and . . . and lie . . . to Henry . . . about everything. All my friends . . . everyone in my life. Elizabeth: Paige. Paige: To lie . . . for the rest of my life. That’s . . . not . . . who I am. Elizabeth: Everybody lies, Paige, it’s . . . a part of life . . . but we’re telling each other the truth now. That’s what’s important. You’re gonna get through this. We will. I promise. Okay? Paige nods her head in agreement, but if we view that head nod as a “promise”—actually a continuation of the promise she already made about not telling anyone her parents’ secret—then Paige essentially provides backing for Elizabeth’s assumption that “everybody lies” because, before the episode ends, Paige will break the promise of that affirmative nod of the head. When two aspects of a person’s “secret life” are in conflict, there are only two ways to resolve the oppositional pressure: Engage in what George Orwell termed “doublethink” in Nineteen Eighty-Four—“holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them. . . .The process has to be conscious, or it would not be carried out with suﬃcient precision, but it also has to be unconscious, or it would bring with it a feeling of falsity and hence of guilt.” Reveal one of the two aspects in order to maintain the concealment of the other one. Thus, even the pure-hearted Paige, the “most virtuous person who harbors no dark thought nor hides any secret deviance,” reveals her own “dishonesty” by breaking her promise—which, ironically, means she has broken one the Mosaic codes as well: “Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” Unlike most people, Paige doesn’t seem to fear being judged by others for being too bland or too virtuous. She is confident in her religious sense of righteousness, and she doesn’t appear to believe any aspect of her own life can be judged negatively. Poignantly, it is her righteousness that causes problems for her in other areas: Her religious view of the world causes her to be judgmental of others who seek meaning in life in non-Christian perspectives—as when Stan and his one-date wonder, Tori from EST, ate dinner with the Jennings family several episodes back and Paige attempted to belittle EST as some sort of false spirituality while also trying to be diplomatic about it. Her view of life also makes it difficult for her to keep secrets—particularly secrets that her righteousness causes her to condemn. Thus, it has become increasingly difficult for her to tell anyone her parents are KGB agents. Had this episode been the series-ending conclusion it came close to being, Paige probably would have told Stan Beeman about her parents. It might have saved Stan’s career before he was fired for his ploy to bring Nina back to the United States—or perhaps, after being fired, Stan wouldn’t have cared that Philip and Elizabeth are KGB agents (confirming a suspicion he had about them back in the first season). Perhaps Stan’s disinterest would have then shattered Paige’s worldview even further—leaving her alone and confused in a world that no longer made sense to her while President Reagan’s March 8, 1983 speech to the National Association of Evangelicals played on the TV evening news. I’m glad the series is continuing for at least one more season, but there were several interesting directions this episode could have taken had the series been brought to its end: Reagan’s speech playing in the background as Paige’s world lies in ruins around her and Stan blows his brains out while staring at the photos in his and Sandra’s wedding album; Reagan’s speech providing a voiceover narration as Philip and Elizabeth are led away in handcuffs; Et cetera. Instead of those intriguing images, the third season concluded with Elizabeth telling Philip that Paige had a positive reaction to visiting her Russian grandmother—and that she believes Paige is starting to accept who her parents are and that she must keep their secret to herself. Ironically, while Elizabeth is telling these things to Philip, Paige is lying on her bed in emotional agony—crying about the situation. To release the pressure she’s experiencing, she must share the secret with someone. Rather than her FBI neighbor, she calls her pastor. Thus, as Paige is on the telephone speaking to her local clergyman, President Reagan is on television in her parents’ bedroom speaking to a national gathering of evangelical clergymen: . . . in your discussions of the nuclear freeze proposals, I urge you to beware the temptation of pride, the temptation of blithely declaring yourselves above it all and label both sides equally at fault, to ignore the facts of history and the aggressive impulses of an evil empire, to simply call the arms race a giant misunderstanding and thereby remove yourself from the struggle between right and wrong and good and evil. . . . while they preach the supremacy of the state, declare its omnipotence over individual man and predict its eventual domination of all peoples on the Earth, they are the focus of evil in the modern world. The juxtaposition of Reagan’s words with Paige’s deed creates a poignant tension—especially when we also consider that the man who is calling the Soviet Union an “evil empire” is not doing so solely, or even mostly, on the basis of their political ideology. Reagan is strongly implying to a gathering of evangelical Christians that the Soviet Union is evil because of their ideological disbelief in the existence of God. Reagan’s implication is that the absence of God in the lives of Soviet citizens makes the government of their nation an “evil empire”—so said the man who two years earlier fired 11,345 Americans for going on strike in their attempt to improve their working conditions and increase their pay. Despite a deed that caused economic and emotional damage to 11, 345 Americans and their immediate families, Reagan was apparently comfortable with the consequences of his actions because he had accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior. It will be interesting to see what the result of Paige’s deed will be next season. Will it lead to the arrest and imprisonment of her parents? Will it lead to her parents killing Pastor Tim and his wife? Will a third possibility develop—such as Pastor Tim coming to Philip and Elizabeth to tell them that Paige is a troubled young woman in need of psychological treatments for delusions stemming from paranoid schizophrenia? Only time will tell. Overall, the series has continuously underscored the idea that being open and honest about ourselves isn’t the problem in human interactions; being secretive about our lives is the problem. However, it’s a problem that is a result of people judging others for their beliefs and feelings rather than for their deeds. Judgment—either negative or positive—should be based on our actions towards others rather than on our thoughts and emotions. In this regard, the notion of being completely open in our lives is an intriguing pipe dream that could lead to all sorts of interesting possibilities in our otherwise mundane public lives and personal relationships—as André Gregory and Wallace Shawn discuss in my all-time favorite film, My Dinner with André: André: . . . each day would become an incredible monumental creative task, and we’re not necessarily up to it. I mean, if you felt like walking out on the person you live with, you’d walk out. Then if you felt like it, you’d come back, but meanwhile the other person would have reacted to your walking out. It would be a life of such feeling. I mean . . . Could we stand to live like that? Wally: Yeah, I think it’s that moment of contact with another person. I mean that’s what scares us. I mean, that moment of being face to face with another person. I mean, now, you wouldn’t think it would be so frightening. It’s strange that we find it so frightening. André: Well, it isn’t that strange. I mean, first of all, there are some pretty good reasons for being frightened. I mean, you know, a human being is a complex and dangerous creature. I mean, really if you start living each moment, Christ, that’s quite a challenge! I mean, if you really reach out, and you’re really in touch with the other person. Well, that really is something to strive for, I think; I really do. Wally: Yeah, it’s just so pathetic if one doesn’t do that. André: Of course there’s a problem, because the closer you come, I think, to another human being, the more completely mysterious and unreachable that person becomes. I mean, you know, you have to reach out and you have to go back and forth with them, and you have to relate, and yet you’re relating to a ghost or something. I don’t know, because we’re ghosts, we’re phantoms. Who are we? And that’s the face to confront, the fact that you’re completely alone, and to accept that you’re alone is to accept death. ——————————————————————————————- André: You know, in the sexual act there’s that moment of complete forgetting, which is so incredible. Then in the next moment you start to think about things . . . what you’ve got to do tomorrow. . . . You see, that’s why I think that people have affairs. Well, I mean, you know, in the theater, if you get good reviews, you feel for a moment that you’ve got your hands on something. You know what I mean? I mean it’s a good feeling, but then that feeling goes quite quickly, and once again you don’t know quite what you should do next. What’ll happen? Well, have an affair and up to a certain point you can really feel that you’re on firm ground. You know, there’s a sexual conquest to be made; there are different questions: does she enjoy the ears being nibbled, how intensely can you talk about Schopenhauer in some elegant French restaurant. Whatever nonsense it is. It’s all, I think, to give you the semblance that there’s firm earth. Well, have a real relationship with a person that goes on for years, that’s completely unpredictable. Then you’ve cut off all your ties to the land and you’re sailing into the unknown, into uncharted seas. I mean, you know, people hold on to these images of father, mother, husband, wife, again for the same reason: because they seem to provide some firm ground, but there’s no wife there. What does that mean, a wife? A husband? A son? A baby holds your hands and then suddenly there’s this huge man lifting you off the ground, and then he’s gone. Where’s that son? This concludes our special announcement of the season-ending conclusion of The Americans; we now return you to your regularly scheduled program, Robin Hood vs. Zorro, already in progress. * I suspect it’s due to his feelings for Martha. ** When Life hands you lemons, Paige, make limonnik. Share this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related One Response The Americans 4.01 “Glanders” - Psycho Drive-In March 27, 2016 […] as I wrote in my review of the season three finale (3.13 “March 8, 1983”), the Kimmy plotline seems to have been […] Log in to Reply Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.