If you thought the ever-impending interpersonal and perhaps fatal desolation and despair of The Americans could only possibly sustain itself so beautifully for another season at most, FX seems to think otherwise. They’ve just ordered two more seasons — a fifth and a sixth — to close out the series. Executive producer Joel Fields had previously hinted that Season 5 or Season 6 could be its last, so between those two options, fans should feel pretty awarded by the ultimate decision.
And while some might be skeptical, wondering if the network is trying to milk all they can get by overstaying the series’ welcome, it’s noteworthy that FX probably isn’t making too much off of The Americans (nor, oddly, are they exactly raking in Emmys). The series never been as successful in its ratings as it is in its deserved critical acclaim. So if the creators and FX think this series has another two seasons in it, I for one can’t wait to see where they’ll go with the extra room for exploration. Will the Jennings’ lives of suburban Soviet espionage be uprooted? Will we ever get to see them thriving, or suffering, or leading another life of tense secrecy, somewhere else? Will the series take us to the collapse of the Berlin Wall? Will Season 6 be a spinoff solely featuring Martha trying her darnedest to learn Russian?
Deadline reports that Season 5 will air in 2017 and be 13-episodes long (which has been standard for the show), and Season 6 will air in 2018, with 10 episodes. Eric Schrier, FX’s president of original programming, said in a statement:
Through its first four seasons, critics have lauded The Americans as one of the best shows on television and, remarkably, a series that keeps getting better every year. We have no doubt that this two-season order will allow Joe and Joel to tell this story to its perfect conclusion.
The series is co-produced with Fox 21 TV Studios, and the company’s president, Bert Salke, said that the two-season pickup will allow “the show to go out on its own terms and [give] the creators time to craft a final stretch as satisfying as the show itself.”
Equally exciting is the (still very vague) news that creator Joe Weisberg and executive producer Joel Fields have reached negotiations with FX to begin developing another series for the network. I, for one, would love to see The Canadians next.