Welcome back to another installment of the Monday Morning Critic. In this space each week, I’ll be looking at the week that was in addition to the week ahead in television. The format will shift each week, as the world of TV will dictate the form and content of each piece. In this week’s installment: a review of the third season of ‘The Americans’ and a look at a recent example the true power of long-form narrative on TV.
The ‘Archer’ gang will beat its 2015 FX brethren to the punch with a season 6 premiere as early as Thursday, but the former ISIS gang won’t leave any network stars behind. Not only has ‘The Americans’ star Matthew Rhys been tapped as a guest star for the animated spy comedy’s sixth season, but so too has ‘Sons of Anarchy’'s CCH Pounder, and ‘Community’ guest Keith David.
Now that 'Sons of Anarchy' has come to a close, FX's year ahead looks brighter than ever, bringing with it premieres for the final season of 'Justified,' 'Archer''s sixth year, and 'The Americans'' return. That said, comedy may win the day, as a new FX trailer previews our first look at Zach Galifianakis and Louis C.K.'s 'Baskets,' along with Denis Leary's return in 'Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll.'
FX critical Cold War darling ‘The Americans’ has offered up its usual stylish and elegant teasers for the new 2015 season, but with ‘Sons of Anarchy’ screeching to a halt last night, Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys are finally reporting for duty. Our first new footage trailer of ‘The Americans’ season 3 brings plenty of flying bullets and international intrigue - plus, who’s getting busted?
We’ve not yet crossed Thanksgiving into December, but the rapidly-approaching 2015 slate of FX and FXX’s returning series has us ready for the new year. The cable networks have officially scheduled the season 6 premiere of ‘Archer,’ as well as the sixth and final season premiere of ‘Justified’ for January 2015, along with a third year for ‘The Americans,’ 10th for ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,’ and more.
Marvel has treated Hayley Atwell's 'Agent Carter' to an official premiere date and first clip in the last week alone, but the latest addition to the 'Captain America' spinoff series has an even larger tie to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. 'The Americans' star Costa Ronin has joined Marvel's 'Agent Carter' in the role of Anton Vanko, an important tie-in character to the 'Iron Man' franchise we've seen Tony Stark tangling with in the past.
'Sons of Anarchy' isn't the only FX heavy-hitter coming to an end in the next few months, as 'Justified''s Raylan Givens loads up one final round in the chamber for the sixth and final season. The first trailer of the final showdown between Boyd Crowder and Raylan has arrived, along with a drafty new teaser for 'The Americans' season 3 in early 2015!
FX period drama 'The Americans' has kept reasonably quiet heading into season 3 next year (state secrets, and all), but following a presence at New York Comic-Con 2014 this past weekend, the Soviet spy series has unclassified a rather large addition. Oscar nominee and Tony-winner Frank Langella will join 'The Americans' season 3 cast, but as whom?
No real surprise here, but even as FX continues to debut buzzworthy new programming from the likes of last night's 'Fargo' premiere to 'The Strain' this summer, one of the network's most acclaimed series picked up another season. Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell will return for 'The Americans' season 3 in 2015, continuing the undercover spy life in the Cold War era.
Now that 'Justified' season 5 has fallen by the wayside, FX is looking to the future for its spring and summer offerings. 'The Americans' season 2 continues to capture critical raves in spite of modest ratings, while the 'Fargo' TV series builds a hefty amount of buzz for its April 15 debut, so what does FX president John Landgraf have to say about the future of either series?