The Americans
In Control

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Out in the middle of the woods, Elizabeth and Philip send a coded message back to Moscow, reporting that Reagan is expected to survive. Philip seems to think that's that, but Elizabeth wants to check the signal site to make sure they don't have further orders. We're all clear on the dynamic here, right? Philip wants the crisis to go away so they can go back to living their lives; Elizabeth isn't exactly spoiling for war, but she's more than willing to go there if that's what the mission dictates. At the signal site, the message that Elizabeth retrieves is telling them to start mapping their targets. Philip is dismayed, as you might expect. He thinks Moscow is hugely overreacting, and you just don't insult Moscow in front of Elizabeth, because she snaps that Philip nearly defected a few weeks ago, so maybe he shouldn't be the one judging overreactions. Yikes! I don't envy Philip having THAT brought up every time there's an argument. "I don't know, honey, maybe the dishes will just DEFECT into the dishwasher... "

Back at the bar, pencil-necked White House and State Department staffers are getting in the most adorable little scuffles over whose boss is overstepping his authority and whose boss is sitting on his ass. Your passion is compelling, boys; it's oh so useless. Nina keeps a watchful eye, her ladyboner for American men shrinking at a rapid pace.

Paige returns to the Beemans' that night to apologize to Matthew for her insensitive comments earlier. He tells her it's nothing, but she says she got to thinking about Secret Service agents throwing themselves in front of bullets and was reminded about what Matthew's dad does. He says he tries not to think about it. "My dad doesn't do stuff like that," Paige says, handing us our ironic moment of the week on a platter. "He's just a travel agent." The teens end up making jokes about the about dangerous lives of travel agents because HOW COULD THEY KNOW?

The Jenningses are target-mapping at Secretary of Defense Weinberger's house, which amounts to pointing a rifle with scope at the house and figuring out how best to assassinate him, should the time come. They clock a neighborhood security car driving past but are undeterred. Until, that is, the car pulls a U-turn and rolls up behind them. Did... they think security wasn't going to be all over a high-ranking cabinet official's home on the day an attempt was made on the life of the President? It's crazy that there isn't way MORE security, in fact. Wouldn't target-mapping these people have been more smartly accomplished literally ANY OTHER DAY before today? Elizabeth hops out of the van -- a VAN, I mean seriously -- and tells a story about being lost to the kindly older rent-a-cop, but he says he's going to have to check her out, as there's been "a rash of break-ins lately." Yes, and also AN ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT. She complies, but when Rent-a-Cop says he's going to have to call in and search her vehicle -- the vehicle with assault weapons inside -- Elizabeth doesn't really have much choice but to shoot him in the head when he ducks into his car. Well, now they've done it. Way to operate quietly, guys. Also, their one headlight on the van isn't working?!?! The easiest way to get caught ever?!?! You guys. This thing is like rolling probable cause.

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The Americans

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