Episode 4 of “The Americans” Season 3 arrived with Phillip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth (Kerri Russell) dealing with the same lingering problem – what were they going to do about Paige (Holly Taylor)? However, after episode 3’s infiltration of the CIA Afghan group, Paige was not the only teenage girl the Jennings would have to worry about in “Dimebag.”
Phillip and Elizabeth had a new target – Kimberly (Julia Garner), the daughter of the head of the CIA Afghan group. After some surveillance by Elizabeth, Phillip pretended to be a beer company lobbyist doling out fake IDs to cozy up to the unsuspecting girl.
Working Kimberly was taking a toll on Phillip. In the episode, the spy became transfixed with a body mist ad promising that “innocence is sexier than you think,” but the prospect of charming a girl Kimberly’s age seemed to make him uncomfortable.
“We have never used somebody this young before,” Phillip told Elizabeth.
Her response: “The CIA is a tough target.”
However, while Phillip and Elizabeth were busy playing Kimberly, their own teenage girl was playing them.
Paige told her parents that all she wanted for her birthday was a dinner with Pastor Tim (Kelly AuCoin) and his wife, confusing her parents who were already on the outs with their daughter parents – Phillip went as far as to buy Paige a Yaz album Kimberly was playing to try and ingratiate himself with his daughter.
Meanwhile, Stan (Noah Emmerich) was struggling to find himself. After a failed attempt to open up at the most recent EST meeting – as well as letting a potential date with a girl from the meeting get away – Stan becomes convinced Zinaida (Svetlana Efremova) may be lying to the CIA, going as far as to ransack a diner bathroom looking for intel she may be leaving for Soviet spies. Perhaps reflecting on some of his crippling issues with trust and honesty, Stan paid a visit to Sandra (Susan Misner) where he finally came clean about his affair with Nina (Annet Mahendru).
Back at the Jennings, the dinner with Pastor Tim finally arrived and Paige dropped a bomb on Phillip and Elizabeth -- she wanted to be baptized in Pastor Tim’s church.
After dinner, the couple argued the whole bringing-Paige-into-the spy-world debate again, desperate to keep their daughter from slipping away. Phillip still did not think it was time, but Elizabeth seemed pretty adamant.
“At least she will know who she is,” pleaded Elizabeth, who earlier in the episode had told Phillip she would be telling Paige the truth whether he was with her or not.
However, the conversation had to be put on hold when Phillip got a call from Kimberly, wanting to see him. So, Phillip was left contemplating letting Elizabeth bring his daughter into a world of danger while listening to Yaz passing a joint to the daughter of his enemy – talk about a poetic ending.
Will Paige’s baptism revelation get Phillip and Elizabeth on the same page or drive them further apart. Fans will have to wait to find out. “The Americans” airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. EST on FX.
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