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Politics & Government

Stranger Than Fiction: Reality Catches Up To 'The Americans'

Pictured: (l-r) Mathew Rhys as Philip Jennings, Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings.
Pictured: (l-r) Mathew Rhys as Philip Jennings, Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings.

With guest host John Donvan.

“The Americans” is a drama series about a suburban American household in the 1980’s. But there’s a twist: The parents are Soviet agents, and they’re embedded on a mission to steal American secrets.

When the show started airing in 2013, the idea of Soviet spies on American soil was almost a quaint relic. But something strange has happened since. Political developments in the U.S. and abroad have breathed new life into Cold War tropes. What was once escapist television now plays like political commentary and many Americans now suspect a reality that is stranger than fiction.

The showrunners join us to talk about writing what’s become a deep reflection of an important geopolitical moment.


Joel Fields, Showrunner, “The Americans”; @joel_fields

Joe Weisberg, Showrunner, “The Americans”; former CIA officer; @joeweisberg

Dr. Vince Houghton, Historian and curator, International Spy Museum; @intelhistorian

For more, visit https://the1a.org.

© 2018 WAMU 88.5 – American University Radio.

Copyright 2018 WAMU 88.5

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