Keri Russell Is a KGB Agent in the Trailer for FX’s ‘The Americans’

Published 2 years ago by

Showtime has struck gold with its CIA drama-thriller series Homeland, and soon FX will unveil its entry in the secret government ops sub-genre: The Americans, a show revolving around a pair of KGB agents (Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys) who pose as an average suburban couple living in Reagan-era America.

Americans was created by former CIA agent Joe Weisberg, who has previously written for the TNT alien invasion series Falling Skies and former FX legal drama Damages (which moved to Audience Network in 2010). Co-showrunners include Graham Yost – who developed the hit FX series Justified – as well as Falling Skies alum Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank and Katrin L. Goodson (Falling Grace).

Russell, of course, kicked her career as an adult female actor fully into gear with her starring role in J.J. Abrams and Matt Reeves’ Felicity TV series, which ran from 1998-2002. She has since stuck mostly to dramatic roles in smaller films (passing over her brief appearance in Abrams’ Mission: Impossible III), but Americans sees Russell once again returning to her television roots – after her not-so-successful attempt with the short-lived Running Wilde.

keri russell the americans Keri Russell Is a KGB Agent in the Trailer for FXs The Americans

Keri Russell in ‘The Americans’

The first trailer for Americans mixes some archival footage from the 1980s (plus a Ronald Reagan speech excerpt) with a rapid-fire montage of Russell and Rhys as highly-trained operatives attempting to navigate the web of fellow spies, enemies such as their FBI agent neighbor (Noah Emmerich), and the increasingly-thin line between their fake relationship and genuine intimacy between the two.

While the teaser allows all that to unfold in an intense and serious manner, we’ve speculated that the actual Americans show could also strike a darkly-comical tone at times (based on the contrivances of the setup). That it could combine satire and drama doesn’t look too far-fetched an assumption, given this series is premiering on the same channel that airs American Horror Story (among other convention-bending shows).


Look for the first season of The Americans to begin airing on FX in January 2013.

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  1. IMO FX is on a pretty great run. The only original show they air that I don’t watch is Wilfred so they’ve earned a good amount of credit with me and I’ll be watching this when it starts.

  2. I’ll watch.
    I like the era it’s set in.
    Bring it on F/X.

  3. The period setting seems to temper the impact of the show a bit, to me. I hope that they don’t really try to refer to the time period too much, you know, make it obvious it’s 1981 by calling attention to outdated things. I hope it just kind of falls into the background and they focus on the couple’s mission and the US government’s attempt to discover them.

  4. AWESOME!!!! Keri Russell was badass in her action scenes in MIB 3. She made Tom look silly. She’s got skkkiilllzzzzzz

    • Unless you’re her PR person, which Keri Russell are you talking about? She can’t act and has zero charisma to boot.

  5. Keri Ruseell playing a human is a bit of a stretch for her “acting ability”…

    Why do they keep casting awful “actors” in TV show leads these past few years?

  6. And again we see the same pattern, take people from Falling Skies (show that had good ratings for two episodes based on the hype but lost that audience because the show was bad) and Damages (badly cast boring show that never got good ratings in spite of the hype), cast a bad actress as the lead and be bemused when audiences tune out…

    • I loved Damages even though it was boring. I thought the acting/casting was top notch. It was just a slow burn, sort of like The Killing, now there’s a plot that never panned out. The Americans pilot was good but one big borefest after that.

  7. Another bad and non-descriptive show title. When flipping channels to find something interesting to watch, who’s going to stop at ‘The Americans’? What does that tell a perspective viewer? Nada. I think bad show titles can kill an otherwise great show. Reminds me of the show titled ‘Life’ a crime drama with Damian Lewis and Sarah Shahi about Detective Charlie Crews, released from prison after serving twelve years for a crime he did not commit. It was a superb show but was cancelled after one season, I believe. Again, an example of non-descriptive show title. I breezed by it several times thinking it was a special sponsored by Life Magazine. I was thrilled with the show as I was familiar with Damian Lewis’ through his work in Band of Brothers. I think it was cancelled due to low viewership. If so, the onus is on whoever had the last word on the show’s title. I mean, Life,… really?

    • To which I meant to add, The Americans may suffer from the same fate. The title says nothing to draw a viewer in. Especially viewers who don’t rely on the TV Guide or any number of entertainment magazines or websites to see what’s available on TV. Or, am I being too persnickety? lol

    • I entirely agree with you on Life. It was the one miracle of the Jeff Zucker era: a good show!!!

      NBC didn’t know how to handle it and frankly, at this point, NBC had already lost so much of its street cred (as Aaron Sorkin would say) that I think the people that would have loved that show were turned off by the fact it was on NBC.

  8. I’ll also add that “struck gold” when it comes to Homeland is praising a bit too much… Homeland’s ratings aren’t all that great and it “great success” plays out mostly in the press.

    That way you get a lot of people who don’t watch it who think it’s doing a lot better than it really is (and is a major problem today with network executives as they seem to believe their own press).

  9. The Americans was very poorly cast, the plot is 1/2″ thin and I paused it 6 times during the premier to check Drudge. Boring…

    • Very true. Any show featuring Keri Russell is poorly cast. I have no idea why Hollywood keeps trying to force-feed her to us. Her claim to fame is a low-rated show (Felicity) that got canceled quickly on WB (which kept flops on for years and years.)

  10. ["That it could combine satire and drama doesn’t look too far-fetched an assumption, given this series is premiering on the same channel that airs American Horror Story (among other convention-bending shows)."]

    That didn’t happen.