next_to_normal: Philip leaning over Elizabeth's shoulder (Americans)
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Day 11: The ship you love for its creepiness.
Philip Jennings/Elizabeth Jennings (The Americans)



This one was a last minute addition. After I watched the first episode of The Americans, I was fascinated by the Jennings family and couldn't NOT include them in this meme. It's a pretty new show (but it is awesome and you should watch it), so let me recap a bit for you: Philip and Elizabeth Jennings are Soviet spies living undercover in the United States during the Cold War. On the surface, they look like your average normal American family - as part of their cover, they are married and have two children - but the marriage was arranged by the KGB and they know nothing about each others' lives before becoming spies. (They're actually not allowed to talk about it. They can't blow each others' cover if they don't know anything.)

What gives them an awesome creepiness factor is the blurring of the line between what is real and what is for show. Philip is much more enamored with America and their life here, genuinely loves Elizabeth, and considers defecting to the U.S. and making this cover story their real lives. Elizabeth, on the other hand, is a hardline KGB operative who views all of this as strictly business. He thinks of her as his wife; she thinks of him as an espionage partner. My favorite scene in the pilot? He tries to embrace her and kiss her, and she threatens him with a kitchen knife to the throat. :D Between that and the fact that both of them are required to have sex with other people as part of their missions (which neither particularly enjoys, but it also bothers Philip for romantic reasons), I suspect that the children were conceived in a "lie back and think of Mother Russia" sort of situation.


But late in the pilot episode, Elizabeth suddenly discovers a desire for her husband and initiates sex with him in their car. Which they have just used to dump a body. Whom Philip just killed. After keeping him prisoner in the trunk for over a day. (SEE? CREEPY.)

So, what sparks this unexpected display of affection? Their captive had raped Elizabeth back when she was training with the KGB, and when Philip realizes this, he's so enraged on Elizabeth's behalf that he kills the guy for her. And so we see that Elizabeth is not made of stone, that she does harbor some feelings for Philip after nearly twenty years together, even if it's merely gratitude and companionship.

I love this show and this couple after only two episodes. I cannot wait to see where the series takes them.

I just posted icons yesterday from this spam, so you can find them here.

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