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"The Americans" Part 2

This show's finale has the making of a sequel ...few left unanswered questions.

What will become of Paige? Ditto, Henry? What will become of Stan and Renee? Ditto for Oleg and of course of Phillip and Elizabeth.

Aside from those questions, I really enjoyed the Finale, particularly, the Parking garage scene and Philips explanation to Stan on why he was a spy. Curiously, Elizabeth did not say a word. There was quite some suspense there...will Stan shoot them, report them? I did not see that in Stan's demeanor, especially with Paige being there. The one puzzling thing that hit me was Stan asking Philip, if he knew Oleg, and Philip responds, no who is he? That did not make any sense, why would Philip deny he knows Oleg, when he just about warned Stan about Renee? He had nothing to lose at that point by denying that.  Anyway, the Finale took us 5 years to view the outcome, that is a credit to the writers....watch out for Part 2, and I would welcome it.

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I could see how some might want to see the aftermath of The Americans, but, I can't imagine the showrunners would get on board.  And would Mathew and Keri?  I can't see it, though, never say never. If they did do a Part II, it would seem to me to follow Paige and Henry, but,t how amusing would that be?  It's not like Paige is going to do much except work and try to get a college degree.  Assuming she's not prosecuted. And the same for Henry.  I suppose if Noah returned, they could show him trying to play catchup to get more evidence on P and E and/or other illegals, including Renee, but, it seems to me that Stan's heart would never really be into it. And except for flushing out Renee, it might seem just too little, too late.   Plus, the acting skills of some of the cast would have to be greater to carry the show, imo.  

What might be more intriguing for me, is if they did a fast forward, so that they portrayed Paige and Henry current day( New actors now their current age)  and where their lives have ended up since her parents left the US.  And there would be all new actors and the old characters like her parents, Stan, etc. would not be shown, only referred to. Some would have probably died since then.  Maybe, Paige does a DNA match on Ancestry.com  and gets a hit from Mischa or his children and she finds her cousins in Russia!  That might work for me. 

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Both Paige and Henry would totally lie to their kids about the grandparents. 

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Since I sometimes (often?) have an adolescent sense of humor...

A few years after getting back to the USSR, Philip meets a young KGB lieutenant colonel named V. Putin.  They hit it off, realizing each has had some shared experiences.  The friendship quickly grows into a professional relationship: Philip knows a winning horse when he sees it and hitches onto this one. 

By year 2000, Philip is one of Putin's most trusted aides, the guy who understands US people and culture better than any other on Putin's staff.  By 2010, Philip is a multi-billionaire Russian oligarch, with business ventures around the globe.  In a surprising twist, he divorces Elizabeth and her black heart, and marries none other than kind-hearted Martha.  Of course like any billionaire oligarch, mistresses are a dime a dozen. 

On the other side of the Atlantic, Stan has recruited Henry, who is desperate to make amends for his traitorous parents.  

Thus we see the major pieces of the chess match that is "The Americans, part 2: Philip vs Henry." 

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For some reason, I've always thought Henry would end up on Fox News.  First, as a guest promoting a book about his parents (though that's unlikely now that he didn't find out the truth until after the fact) and then as "Fox News Business Analyst Henry Beeman."  I think he'd likely drop the Jennings name as he wouldn't want to be connected with it.  I imagine too that the revelation would cause something of an identity crisis.  Henry was the name his parents gave him but Jennings was the name that the KGB gave his parents.  It's something he might grapple with though the truth about his parents would be the toughest thing.

I joked that Paige should show up at Pastor Tim's door in Buenos Aires.  Those two deserve each other!

I would think Philip would finally get the chance to meet his son and reunited with his brother and his family.  Gabriel would likely visit him and Elizabeth.  I imagine Martha won't although I see one chance encounter for her and Philip in the future, meeting in the street or something.

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1 hour ago, kikaha said:

Since I sometimes (often?) have an adolescent sense of humor...

A few years after getting back to the USSR, Philip meets a young KGB lieutenant colonel named V. Putin.  They hit it off, realizing each has had some shared experiences.  The friendship quickly grows into a professional relationship: Philip knows a winning horse when he sees it and hitches onto this one. 

By year 2000, Philip is one of Putin's most trusted aides, the guy who understands US people and culture better than any other on Putin's staff.  By 2010, Philip is a multi-billionaire Russian oligarch, with business ventures around the globe.  In a surprising twist, he divorces Elizabeth and her black heart, and marries none other than kind-hearted Martha.  Of course like any billionaire oligarch, mistresses are a dime a dozen. 

On the other side of the Atlantic, Stan has recruited Henry, who is desperate to make amends for his traitorous parents.  

Thus we see the major pieces of the chess match that is "The Americans, part 2: Philip vs Henry." 

Oh man...Kikaha...you have really nailed it.  Looks like a great "pitch" to producers.  Perhaps Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys could be enticed to be the show's producers.  Yes, this might be adolescent, but, we are talking about Hollywood, where no one grows old and they all have ocean-front houses in San Diego. 

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TV is very into re-makes and re-launches so maybe in 10-20 years??     

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The ending has left so many possibility's...and I would be watching, if and when it happens...but not years from now.

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Anything can happen to the actors too, not that I think Matthew and Keri would be inclined to do more Americans projects.  Bill Paxton died 6 years after Big Love closed after 5 seasons.  Gandolfini died 6 years after 6 years of The Sopranos. 

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5 hours ago, Novel8 said:

This show's finale has the making of a sequel ...few left unanswered questions.

What will become of Paige? Ditto, Henry? What will become of Stan and Renee? Ditto for Oleg and of course of Phillip and Elizabeth.

Aside from those questions, I really enjoyed the Finale, particularly, the Parking garage scene and Philips explanation to Stan on why he was a spy. Curiously, Elizabeth did not say a word. There was quite some suspense there...will Stan shoot them, report them? I did not see that in Stan's demeanor, especially with Paige being there. The one puzzling thing that hit me was Stan asking Philip, if he knew Oleg, and Philip responds, no who is he? That did not make any sense, why would Philip deny he knows Oleg, when he just about warned Stan about Renee? He had nothing to lose at that point by denying that.  Anyway, the Finale took us 5 years to view the outcome, that is a credit to the writers....watch out for Part 2, and I would welcome it.

Philip didn’t know the name Oleg Burov. It didn’t click in who he was until Stan said he got arrested after picking up a dead drop. 

Elizabeth was right to let Philip handle Stan. He has the connection with Stan, knows him better, and imo is the best at handling people. 

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1 hour ago, Erin9 said:

Philip didn’t know the name Oleg Burov. It didn’t click in who he was until Stan said he got arrested after picking up a dead drop. 

Elizabeth was right to let Philip handle Stan. He has the connection with Stan, knows him better, and imo is the best at handling people. 

I half expected Philip to say, "Stan, we don't actually use names, you know?"

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2 hours ago, SunnyBeBe said:

Anything can happen to the actors too, not that I think Matthew and Keri would be inclined to do more Americans projects.  Bill Paxton died 6 years after Big Love closed after 5 seasons.  Gandolfini died 6 years after 6 years of The Sopranos. 

Matthew Rhys had better take excellent care of himself! 

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3 minutes ago, crgirl412 said:

Matthew Rhys had better take excellent care of himself! 

I know.  I haven't checked into any other series shows. Those two just popped in my head, but, I bet there are others too.  Odd.  

Edited by SunnyBeBe.
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Get Liz was a big Putin supporter during the 1999 Russian elections

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2 hours ago, sistermagpie said:

I half expected Philip to say, "Stan, we don't actually use names, you know?"

Lol Yeah. 

It surprised me that Stan hadn’t yet realized just how cautious they were. There’s a reason they lasted 22 years. They didn’t tend to share anything more than absolutely necessary. And people didn’t share with them. Except for their real faces to the priest who performed their wedding and then betrayed them. 

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 Full disclosure: I was curious about the Finale, never having watched one episode.

I think the ending would have been better with the spies' deaths (AS IF their driver would have simply allowed them to get out at a scenic spot and converse! More like, "Leave the gun. Take the Vatrushka."), specifically, a hand-holding leap from that bridge.

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OK, I decided to do a "worst case" and a "best case" future for the principals after this ending. 

Up first?  Worst Case.

WORST CASE:

Henry:  This all makes the newspapers.  Henry becomes famous and not in a good way.  His friends, and the rest of the world no longer trust him and (as in the real kids in a similar situation) is suspected of being recruited into the KGB.  The endless questioning by the FBI, and the withdrawal of many of his teachers and friends crushes him.  He drops out of school, because he can't afford it, but does successfully petition to be declared an emancipated minor, so doesn't have to go to a group home.  His friend's dad no longer wants him to work at his Tanning factory, so he gets a job at a fast food place for a while, gets his GED, and is eventually able to clear himself with the FBI.  He changes his name, and doesn't answer letters from his parents.  Eventually he speaks to Philip on the phone, but only for answers.  Money arrives somehow, and he assumes it's from his parents or the KGB.  He debates using the money, but eventually does go back to college.  His heart isn't in it anymore though.  He tries drugs, and they seem to relieve the pain a bit, soon he is addicted and dies of a drug overdose in a flop pad he's found.

Paige:  Goes to prison for many years for Treason, and accessory to murders.  She has little contact with Henry because of this.  She's eventually released at around fifty years old.  Her life is gone, she can't have children, she never had her grand romantic love to keep her from loneliness, and she mourns her brother.  

Stan:  Stan confesses to the FBI right away, because he knows Paige will give him up, but mostly because he needs the FBI to know that Renee might be KGB.  Stan avoids prison, mostly because the FBI doesn't want the bad press of this getting out, and he is allowed to resign, with the proviso that he stays out of any kind of law enforcement or government work.  Renee is confirmed as KGB, but escapes back to the Soviet Union, where she gives several news interviews about Stan being a fool, weak, and easily duped.  Stan calls Mathew, and he calls Henry.  Both calls are very depressing.  He puts a bullet in his brain.

Elizabeth:  Watching the Soviet Union fall apart tears her up inside.  Her entire life was for nothing, but worse than that?  She knows that without her direct actions, socialism and the USSR might not have fallen apart. She's very jealous that Philip still has a child, Misha, and continually tries to alienate Misha and screams endlessly at Philip about his refusal to go get Henry.  She begins drinking a lot, she's especially angry at Philip, and especially heartbroken that both of her children came to such disastrous ends.  She becomes bitter, and angrier as she ages.  She plots to kill Putin, thinking she may just pull off one last "assignment" since she's so old, they may not suspect her.  She's killed in the attempt.

Philip:  Finally fed up with Elizabeth's endless and hate-filled abuse, he leaves her.  There are many money making opportunities for him, and for a while, financially at least, he succeeds, providing well for his three children becomes his only goal.  He becomes a drone, no love in his life, no goal but money.  Things are very strained with Misha because of Elizabeth, but they occasionally meet and awkwardly talk, they have nothing in common.  Philip is killed by the Mafia, during a home invasion robbery.

Oleg:  Is never released from prison.  He tells his wife to divorce him and remarry.  She does that, and has two more children with her second husband.

*(I suppose WORST would be Philip and Elizabeth killed by the Coup forces)

Edited by Umbelina.
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I can see, as in the movie 45 Years, Phillip becoming deeply disturbed as Elizabeth quickly, too quickly (despite always saying "the right thing") gets over it and "moves on" .... while he is left guilt and grief stricken... My mistrust of Elizabeth (in large part because of her ability to play Phillip like a violin) is enormous .... yes, "she'll be fine" ... and quickly grow impatient, even resentful that Phillip won't "move on" ...  In such a stoic society,  Phil's deep feelings will be shut down ... no cult of "deep feelings" and touchy-feely authenticity (like EST) to take refuge in. 

Edited by SusanSunflower.
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OK, after that depressing sojourn, let get to the other side.

BEST CASE:

Oleg:  Is released in the spirit of reconciliation between the USA and former USSR, in 1991, Arkady has never stopped fighting for him.  With open boarders, Oleg's father, mother, wife, and son leave the Soviet Union to meet Oleg in Milan, where they decide to remain.  When they miss snow they travel to the Alps to ski, when they want beaches they head south.  They live a peaceful life, and Oleg has two daughters, twins, the light of all their lives along with his son.  He finds a well paying job consulting with an American firm on Russian relations, and enjoys wine.  They plan to buy a vineyard this summer, where Oleg intends to write spy novels.

Philip:  He initially is very sad about leaving the USA and his children, but soon there is Skype and open boarders.  He stays in touch with them constantly, and is proud of both of their successes.  They meet up at least once a year in Europe.  He's very happy with Elizabeth, and extremely close to his son Misha.  They've moved to Odessa by the sea.  Gabriel has a cottage down the street, frequently inviting them to dinner, and to play Scrabble.  Philip is very wealthy, he did astonishingly well in the new Capitalist Russia, negotiations with Americans was his strong suit.  He buys a house for Misha next door, and loves his new daughter in law, but is especially proud of and close to his grandchildren, two girls and two boys.

Elizabeth:  The fall of the Soviet Union was very hard on her, but her love for Philip was strong enough to see her through it.  She initially worked as a teacher, helping Russians learn American customs and behavior for the KGB.  Now though, she needn't work, because Philip makes more than enough to support them.  She's decorated her beautifully home in Odessa with art.  She's continued to draw, but moved quickly to sculpture, finding clay and later stone to be more enjoyable.  To her surprise, some of her sculpture has been extremely well received in various capitals of the world.  She travels here and there, and enjoys skyping with both of her children.  She spends a lot of time at the beach with Philip, going down to watch the sunsets with him most nights.  Her step-grandchildren adore her.

Paige:  Paige, on Stan's advice, negotiates a plea deal with the US Government.  She tells them everything she knows, except about Stan being there the night they were escaping.  She leaves Virginia and moves near Henry in New Hampshire.  At first she just has a small apartment but she's able to find a pretty good job, and enroll in night-school at a good college.  Soon, money arrives from her parents, and she's able to quit her job, and attend college full time, graduating with honors.  She remains very close to her brother, they have a bond that will never be broken.  She returns to school to becomes a Veterinarian.  She marries a calm, steady man, a Philosophy professor at Dartmouth.  They have one child, a daughter who has her grandmother's eyes, 3 rescue dogs and a cat that rules the house.  She's taking horseback riding lessons.

Henry:  Henry is rapidly cleared of all suspicion.  His friends rally around him, and Stan chips in money to help him finish out his school.  Henry only accepts the financial help as a "loan" but they are still close, and still friends.  He always knows he can count on Stan.  Stan's continued love for Henry in spite of his parent's deception, goes a very long way in keeping Henry's self-confidence up.  Stan tries to make most of his games, and they have dinner together once a week.  Henry is very close to Paige, but it's really Stan's emotional support that gets him through the hardest times.  Henry gets a scholarship to Dartmouth, and he considers it since he'd be near Paige's family.  Instead though, after money from his parents begins to flood in, he decides to attend the Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, eventually ending up with at PhD in Mathematics.  He becomes a famous scientist/mathematician, and he loves his work.  He occasionally flies to Odessa to hang out at the beach with his parents.  After graduation he meets a fiery petite French Psychiatrist and they fall head over heels in love with each other.   They have three boys, all quite tall.  One plays hockey at school.

Stan:  Stan sets a trap for Renee, it's his last act as an FBI agent.  She takes the bait, and he arrests her, handing her, and his early retirement papers over to Aderholt.  He leaves Virginia and moves to Boston.  He gets a job as security head for a major international company, making 4 times his FBI salary, and traveling the world for business and pleasure regularly.  Mathew frequently goes with him, and Stan has hired him to work in his department.  They do better as adult to adult than they did as father/son.  They become best friends.  During one business trip to Japan, Stan met a wonderful woman, a widowed executive secretary at one of the companies he handles,  and fell in love.  Her English was better than his Japanese, but they laugh all the time, and somehow, Japanese is coming much easier to him than Russian ever did.  They plan to retire in Tahiti in a few years.

Edited by Umbelina.
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The Js said they look forward to the fanfic about the characters' futures. You should publish these on Twitter where they will see them, Umbelina.

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Thanks but no.  That was just down and dirty because honestly, all of their futures could go any which way.  A lot depends on whether or not Elizabeth and Philip are killed immediately or soon after once they return.

They will have a bunch of people more angry and more powerful than Claudia after them for this.

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There were some things I took almost as given based on what I felt the tone was at the end. 

Philip and Elizabeth would stay together. They had a huge adjustment to make, but would make it together.

Paige would not face prison. Again- difficult adjustment, but orange would not be her color. I felt like the ending would be different for her if that was really likely to happen. Just isn’t a future I see for her. Stan will help. She’ll figure out who she is beyond belonging in America. As her dad wanted for her. 

Henry will obsess over knowing who his parents are, recalling his last and most memorable moments with them and bond with Paige despite being angry/betrayed at being left out. He’ll heed his dad’s advice.  (The tone may not really suggest this exactly, but I think it’s pretty logical.) Stan will help as needed. 

Stan and Renee fall apart. 

Philip and Elizabeth are safe. So is Arkady. Philip and Elizabeth finally were able to sleep in the car when he drove him to Moscow. They felt safe and trusted him. He seemed relaxed. They had what he needed. I just felt they’d survive the upheaval. Now and in the future. They’re adaptable survivors imo. 

Below is just my own thoughts-  which is the nice thing about an open ended finale. 

Paige helps Henry deal with the truth. When they are able to-they visit with their parents, are able to really talk, questions are answered, and they enjoy each other’s company. They also talk on the phone. In short - they eventually move forward as a family, even though they live in separate countries and have to deal with the deception. 

Philip and Elizabeth sign the paperwork and are legally married. They get to know Mischa and become close with him. And Philip’s family. Maybe they have another kid; it’s not too late and I can see that as real option given all they’ve lost. (Not that this would be a replacement, of course.)

They are successful in their new careers. They work together because that’s what they do. I don’t know if they might work for Arkady in some capacity, but that felt like a possibility. I sensed genuine respect and trust between them. Which makes sense given what has happened. 

As I said above, at the very least Stan’s marriage falls apart. He probably stays out of CI. He was, is and has been over it. Highly possible he might just retire period. Helps Henry and Paige where he can. 

Oleg is hard to say. His future seemed bleakest and the most difficult to fix. But he eventually is released and goes home. Though much has changed. 

Edited by Erin9.
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10 hours ago, Erin9 said:

Oleg is hard to say. His future seemed bleakest and the most difficult to fix. But he eventually is released and goes home. Though much has changed. 

I wonder if Philip, Elizabeth and Arkady might have something to do with his family as well. I don't know what, but I just mean they would all respect him and Arkady and Philip already know what he sacrificed. He told Philip about his baby back home and what he was risking and now asking Philip to risk the same thing. Arkady would probably want to do something for the family but they also have a painful history with them. Philip and Elizabeth did ultimately at least make Oleg's mission successful in the end and while that wouldn't make anything really better it would be better than nothing.

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18 minutes ago, sistermagpie said:

I wonder if Philip, Elizabeth and Arkady might have something to do with his family as well. I don't know what, but I just mean they would all respect him and Arkady and Philip already know what he sacrificed. He told Philip about his baby back home and what he was risking and now asking Philip to risk the same thing. Arkady would probably want to do something for the family but they also have a painful history with them. Philip and Elizabeth did ultimately at least make Oleg's mission successful in the end and while that wouldn't make anything really better it would be better than nothing.

I think it would definitely mean something to Oleg’s dad and the rest of his family that his sacrifice wasn’t for nothing. I feel like they’d be sure he knew that the mission did get accomplished. Philip and Arkady knew what Oleg had chosen to risk. I think they’d want to do whatever they could to help. Elizabeth too once she knew everything. They all would have respected Oleg. 

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The best thing they could do for Oleg's family is to stay far, far, away from them. 

Arkady, Philip, and Elizabeth are all on shaky ground, and could be murdered at any time.  So far, the Coup people may have no proof that Oleg's family was involved in thwarting them.  If Arkady, Philip, or Elizabeth contact them?  That feeling may change and put them in danger.  Oleg's father WAS involved because he took the coded messages from Oleg.

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I can’t see Philip or Elizabeth failing to adapt to their new lives in the old country. They’re platinum super spies. They might flail around at first, but they’re very adaptable and highly intelligent. 

Paige needs to throw herself at the mercy of the FBI and hope having giant sad eyes helps. She would never last living on lam. 

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On 6/2/2018 at 4:49 PM, Kokapetl said:

I can’t see Philip or Elizabeth failing to adapt to their new lives in the old country. They’re platinum super spies. They might flail around at first, but they’re very adaptable and highly intelligent. 

Paige needs to throw herself at the mercy of the FBI and hope having giant sad eyes helps. She would never last living on lam. 

I think they would adapt, that is if they aren't killed by the furious and extremely powerful and numerous Coup people.  If they aren't killed?  I already did best and worst, so he is my last fan wank.

MY MOST LIKELY TO HAPPEN (if we posit that Liz and Phil aren't killed, which is possible)

Elizabeth would most likely crumble into a bitter and angry and alcoholic old hag when everything she gave her life for becomes meaningless in 1991, she would also (rightly) blame herself, and probably Philip for her assistance in making that happen.  (Basically, I see Elizabeth's ending more similar to my "worst case" above.) Early on, she would adapt well to being back in Russia, but as the country became more an more like the USA, only with a strong dictatorship?  It would crush her spirit.

Philip would probably, finally leave her, and he'd move to a different country, as far away from politics as possible, possibly with his son Misha, and he would work his ass off to reestablish his relationships with his other children, to have them come and visit him in Greece, or Turkey, or some South American country, hoping the Coup people and/or the CIA didn't track him down.  I do think Philip would find love again, and might even marry.

Oleg is eventually released, after something like a decade.  He and his family, what left of them, would resettle away from Moscow, probably in southern Russia, but maybe in Europe.  He would probably do OK in business, he would have missed the first wave, and I honestly think he would stay out of the crime side of things, which includes the vast wealth available with weapon selling.  Hopefully his wife and child would join him, she may have moved on, his parent probably died, but I think he would have a relationship with his son at least.  He would remarry if his wife had moved on.

Stan is the most bleak to me.  I only see one of two possible endings for him really.  He confesses all, because Paige will anyway, and because he can't risk a KGB penetration of the FBI by his wife.  I just can't see him lying for the rest of his life, and I can't in anyway see him continuing to work for the FBI.  He's most likely fired, may escape jail simply because the FBI and USA doesn't need the terrible publicity.  In reality, I think he puts his gun in his mouth and kills himself.  He won't be in a position, financially or emotionally to help Paige or Henry.

Paige either cuts a deal exposing Stan, escaping prison, or is imprisoned for life for treason and accessory to several murders.  If she cuts a deal, she gets a job, probably changes her name and appearance, and maybe a few years down the line, has enough money for some night school classes.  IF her parents are alive, they will send her money eventually, and she could go back to college.  She visits Russia after 1991, but dislikes it, and her mother is a mess, which complicates her relationship with Philip.  She's a lonely adult, but does have a relationship with her brother.  She is so desperate not to be alone that she marries, probably more than once.  None of the marriages ever fill the holes in her, so they all end in divorce.  She probably has a child or two, she tells them they have it easy compared to her childhood, just as Elizabeth told her.

Henry is only 16.  He is placed in foster care.  Since he's older, it's doubtful he gets a home placement, most older kids don't.  He lives in a group home, which is a nightmare world of negotiating to stay unharmed.  He's released at 18, also changes his name.  His math and science skills, as well as his computer skills allow him to find a great job in Silicone Valley.  Paige moves to San Jose as well to be near him.  Henry does well in the tech world, very well.  He forgives his parents, skypes with Philip often, and is quite well to do by the age of 35 since he's on the bubble of the tech world, and very skilled.  He eventually marries and has kids.  He takes them to meet their grandfather.

Edited by Umbelina.
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Well, my general ideas of how everyone's future ends up line up a lot with @Erin9's view. It's based on the tone of the show, and also the fact is we're dealing with a historical drama here, not history. 

So, Philip and Elizabeth survive and stay together and eventually readjust, living in a country that is falling to pieces, and they don't get to see their kids again until the fall of the Soviet Union, when the borders open up and the kids feel like visiting, though I can imagine they'll have been able to communicate with them beforehand. They've given the information Arkady needs for the plotters of this 1987 failed coup to be exposed and purged, and they're out of danger on that end. Maybe they continue intelligence work, maybe they transition to something else when there's a private sector in Russia.

Whatever they do for work, in their personal lives, I think they become close to Philip's family in Moscow, which will help them readjust. Mischa and Philip's brother and his family. It will be hard at first because they'll treat him like he was a hero, when Philip knows that is the opposite of the truth. When they find out Mischa smuggled himself out to meet Philip in Washington and was turned back by Gabriel, both of them will go ballistic over it and confront Gabriel about it, if he's still alive and they've reconnected with him. Philip's teenage nephew will make them miss their children even more. idk, maybe by that time Mischa even has a family of his own. Maybe Philip totally gets his mind blown and finds out he's a grandfather. 

The fact that Elizabeth was almost completely absent from Henry's life for the last three years she was able to see him will utterly crush her, especially if they're close to Philip's other son and this family with another little boy. and the horrible conflict with Paige being how things were left between them will absolutely haunt her. I think she'll take up art as a hobby to deal with the emptiness and sadness of her situation and as a way to remember that life. When they're finally reunited with the kids when they come to visit sometime in the early '90s, (in those few years, Paige and Henry will have had each other and been able to process the deception and loss of their parents as they reestablish their lives) Elizabeth will be an emotional wreck about it, especially towards Henry and particularly because of those three years she missed out on. I think he will be able to forgive her. I envision a mirror of the hug of when Elizabeth came back from recovering from her gunshot wound, only they're adults and Henry is towering over her and she's crying. I think Henry will have initially hated them for the betrayal of the deception but will ultimately come to be grateful he didn't have to live with the same kind of damage and pressure Paige lived with when she had to keep their secret. Ultimately, he loves them.  

I think both Paige and Henry's minds will be blown over having an older brother. Paige may want to connect with him, but Henry could be weird about it. Mischa will definitely want to know them both though. He may eventually visit them in the United States even if their parents can't. 

Renee turns out to be some sort of spy, whether or not she's KGB, and Stan will figure it out very soon after the finale. In any event, he 100% moves away because there's no way he's staying in that house. Whether or not he stays in the FBI is a question. He probably moves back to regular crime if he does, but he may not even stay in DC. Maybe transfers to a field office, which is like a demotion, but the change of scenery will likely be a welcome and necessary one. I think he remains a figure in both Henry and Paige's life. 

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On 6/2/2018 at 1:24 AM, Erin9 said:

Henry will obsess over knowing who his parents are, recalling his last and most memorable moments with them and bond with Paige despite being angry/betrayed at being left out. He’ll heed his dad’s advice.  (The tone may not really suggest this exactly, but I think it’s pretty logical.) Stan will help as needed. 

 

I think with Henry they really couldn't hit any tone other than what they did given where he was. All the other characters had made decisions and were living with the results of them, results they had some idea of when they made the decision. Henry, otoh, was just finding out something shocking. There's just no way he could show in any way in that moment which way he might eventually deal with it. Stan's there, but Henry's turned away from him. He hasn't fallen into Stan's protective embrace like that's his conclusion. All it says is that Stan genuinely would like to help and we've no idea how much or little he'll be able to give it or Henry will be able to receive it.

I do think that that particular piece of advice that was so important to Philip for both his kids--to be yourself--will resonate with both of them, particularly given the wild situation they're dealing with, meaning knowing who he was. 

Edited by sistermagpie.
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@Plums Yes. We do pretty much agree on how things would have gone both based on the tone and the fact that this is a historical drama- not history.

Henry is the hardest to predict. No doubt he’ll be very angry. But- I tend to believe with time and the eventual opportunity to talk with Paige and his parents, he’ll have a relationship with them. He loves them. They love them. At the end of the day- they’re family. And family is nothing if not complicated. They left him out of love, they kept him in the dark because it was in his best interests to not live with it- and he thankfully wasn’t pushing them about their activities. And these decisions that have so impacted his life were made so long ago. Well before he was born. And the insight into the reality of the consequences wasn’t there at the time. That doesn’t make it okay. It just...is what it is. No one wanted this outcome. 

I do see Elizabeth having a harder time, too. She’ll have to live with the fact she wasn’t part of Henry’s life in the last 3 years. By choice. We already saw her pain and regret going back to her thanksgiving call. Philip won’t have that kind of regret. 

Then- there’s Paige. Yeah- she’ll have regrets about that fight and all the half truths and lies. And probably about how she handled the training. Or- that she agreed to it at all. Philip is part of the lies too- of course-  but much less so. And Paige knew he was unhappy with the situation. Even she didn’t miss that. Lol 

I see the kids being mind blown about Mischa. I did want to see their reactions to having a brother. *sigh*  I would think at the least curiosity would win out all around, and they’d meet.  Definitely Mischa would want that. 

Thinking of Paige, her finding out the truth didn’t fix things the way she thought they would. It’s hard for me to say that E/P made the wrong call in simply telling her. It was too much information for her. But I think they were afraid of the consequences if they didn’t. And who knows how badly she would have handled them refusing to say anything to her. Certainly- a problem was Paige always thought she wanted to know everything (ie way too much), but she really didn’t. So- she ignored reality. Had selective hearing for a long time. 

I hadn't thought about it, but Stan would move. I’m sure Renee is a spy, and between that and seeing  P/E’s old house, he’ll be gone. 

 

@sistermagpie Can you imagine if Henry’s body language had been something along the lines of hugging Stan? Ugh. Stan always got way too much credit where Henry was concerned. Never made any sense at all to me, but oh well. 

There was no way to get a real tone for Henry since, as you said, he had no choices to make. He just got blindsided. It’s really just a guess. I’m just going for something that’s not bitter and sad in my mind. 

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Arkady says Gorbachev isn't strong enough, or in a position to take out his opposition.  (The coup people.) 

Yes, this is fiction, but The Americans has always stayed true to historical events.  The Coup happens (same people) in 1991, and they do get rid of Gorbachev, but their efforts to save the USSR fail anyway.  Money and the people enjoying the reforms are the main reasons.  Powerful people become very wealthy in the free for all world of Organized Crime, and Sanctioned Crime in the USSR (the powerful people,) specifically selling all kinds of weapons to anyone that can pay for them.  There is always money to be made in the destruction of a civilization or country, and the ways to make that money are rarely pretty.

No matter what though, the country and ideals that Elizabeth has devoted her entire life to, has done terrible things for?  Is gone.  Also she will come face to face with the reality of "conditions for workers" in the Soviet Union before it falls, and the totally fantasy of the equality and fairness she fought so hard for.

Glossing over what happens to Henry and Paige in those critical years, instead of dealing with the absolute reality of what happens to their lives while Henry is still a minor, and Paige is facing incredibly serious charges as well as life imprisonment, that is where the pie in the sky version of what happens to them next completely fails for me.

The same thing with Stan really, I can't see any possibility that Stan will be OK, or that he still has a job, or will be in any position at all to do anything for Paige or Henry.  Above all, I can't see Stan not being told on by Paige, or, at the very least, KNOWING that she will, under questioning, expose him.  He has to tell, and I do think he's a dedicated FBI employee, he also has to tell them about Renee, because he would not, in any way, allow another KGB penetration of the DC offices.  He couldn't.

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1 hour ago, Erin9 said:

 Can you imagine if Henry’s body language had been something along the lines of hugging Stan? Ugh. Stan always got way too much credit where Henry was concerned. Never made any sense at all to me, but oh well. 

I'm glad they saw how unrealistic that would be. And out of keeping with everyone else being so up in the air. Really if Henry follows his usual pattern he'll get as far away from everyone as possible for a while. That's what he's actually always done. Eventually he'll no doubt deal with things but he's never dealt with pain by seeking out people to talk to or for comfort.

I find the credit that Stan--and Pastor Tim--got to be really disturbing for what it said about what people demand of parents on television at least. And weirdly egotistical somehow.

It's also wildly optimistic, as Umbelina says, to imagine Stan just being some guy who lives across the street and is free to open his home to a kid who's suddenly regressed to needing one. He just assisted in the escape of two of the most wanted people in the FBI for personal reasons. He's not even like Oleg handing over William because he was acting as a sort of whistle blower (one who eventually got caught in a different way and jailed). Aderholdt's being really nice to him and Stan's just stabbed him in the back as an FBI agent.

Even if he didn't have to deal with the horror of Paige Jennings wandering back into Washington and blowing away Stan's "clean getaway" if he had any integrity he'd have to leave the bureau. But she is there and there's good reason to think that would be it. There's even Stan's partner there to say exactly when Stan left his post for some mysterious errand (after earlier making a mysterious phone call). I think Aderholdt would figure that out and he wouldn't let Stan go just because they're friends. He's real FBI.

1 hour ago, Erin9 said:

Thinking of Paige, her finding out the truth didn’t fix things the way she thought they would. It’s hard for me to say that E/P made the wrong call in simply telling her. It was too much information for her. But I think they were afraid of the consequences if they didn’t. And who knows how badly she would have handled them refusing to say anything to her. Certainly- a problem was Paige always thought she wanted to know everything (ie way too much), but she really didn’t. So- she ignored reality. Had selective hearing for a long time. 

I wonder sometimes if it would have been different if Paige's interest in them had been different--though maybe she would have needed to be older for it. If she'd been older and more able to handle really knowing her parents as people it might not have been so destructive for her. Like Paige actually had a lot of time to try to understand he parents as kids like her in a very different environment with very different choices. Instead it was like her identity was still too dependent on theirs. Maybe she was afraid of being left behind if she didn't find a way to imagine they were all really the same. Though actually at her age many girls would have intentionally been defining themselves against them.

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8 minutes ago, sistermagpie said:

I'm glad they saw how unrealistic that would be. And out of keeping with everyone else being so up in the air. Really if Henry follows his usual pattern he'll get as far away from everyone as possible for a while. That's what he's actually always done. Eventually he'll no doubt deal with things but he's never dealt with pain by seeking out people to talk to or for comfort.

I think Stan was important to Henry and visa versa.  I have relationships with other people's children like that, and I think they are healthy and good for me, and for them.  (Friend's children, my nieces, etc.)  That doesn't mean either party thinks of the other as a parent or their own child.

HOW will Henry "get away" though?  He's only 16.  He will be suspected or at the very least, extensively questioned by the FBI.  He has no money.  How he can avoid becoming a ward of the state, at the very least, for now,  is beyond my logical comprehension. 

9 minutes ago, sistermagpie said:

It's also wildly optimistic, as Umbelina says, to imagine Stan just being some guy who lives across the street and is free to open his home to a kid who's suddenly regressed to needing one. He just assisted in the escape of two of the most wanted people in the FBI for personal reasons. He's not even like Oleg handing over William because he was acting as a sort of whistle blower (one who eventually got caught in a different way and jailed). Aderholdt's being really nice to him and Stan's just stabbed him in the back as an FBI agent.

 

9 minutes ago, sistermagpie said:

Even if he didn't have to deal with the horror of Paige Jennings wandering back into Washington and blowing away Stan's "clean getaway" if he had any integrity he'd have to leave the bureau. But she is there and there's good reason to think that would be it. There's even Stan's partner there to say exactly when Stan left his post for some mysterious errand (after earlier making a mysterious phone call). I think Aderholdt would figure that out and he wouldn't let Stan go just because they're friends. He's real FBI.

Yes.  Stan's future, to me, is beyond the most bleak.  He's so very fucked.  On every single level, no matter what choices he makes, his future is very bleak.

Elizabeth and Philip have enough skills to hopefully not be murdered right away, in fury for their opposition to the powerful Coup people and Claudia.  But Stan?  Just what options does he have, personally, morally, or professionally?  No good ones, that's for sure.

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27 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

I think Stan was important to Henry and visa versa.  I have relationships with other people's children like that, and I think they are healthy and good for me, and for them.  (Friend's children, my nieces, etc.)  That doesn't mean either party thinks of the other as a parent or their own child.

Exactly. That's the way I see him and Stan and it is a very healthy thing to have. It's not a sign that Something Is Wrong with anybody or their family. The kid isn't cheating on their parents.

27 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

HOW will Henry "get away" though?  He's only 16.  He will be suspected or at the very least, extensively questioned by the FBI.  He has no money.  How he can avoid becoming a ward of the state, at the very least, for now,  is beyond my logical comprehension. 

The best he could hope for for a while under scrutiny would probably just be to "go away" into his own head when he can--rather than wanting to talk things out with yet another person. (Especially another FBI agent who'd hardly be able to just interact with him like a civilian.) But if he comes through I could see him choosing to start his adult life with a change of scene or whatever.

27 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

 

Yes.  Stan's future, to me, is beyond the most bleak.  He's so very fucked.  On every single level, no matter what choices he makes, his future is very bleak.

Elizabeth and Philip have enough skills to hopefully not be murdered right away, in fury for their opposition to the powerful Coup people and Claudia.  But Stan?  Just what options does he have, personally, morally, or professionally?  No good ones, that's for sure.

It's hard to tell even where Stan would be regarding his own moral compass when it comes to his choice. Elizabeth chose to go against the Centre because it conflicted with the values she thought were right so the disconnect is more about the Centre letting her down (in her mind) than her changing. Pastor Tim was supposed to be following his values in keeping the secret. But I'm not sure where Stan's internally that would help him stand up to all the stuff that would be coming at him externally. He doesn't even have a wife the way he thought he did. Nor can he really accept support from Aderholdt while he's undermining him.

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Oh, that's another thing.

Pastor Tim and his Wife are in DEEP SHIT now.  Paige, during her questioning, which WILL be extensive, will probably also tell about them.  Stan already had his suspicions and everyone Philip and Elizabeth interacted with will be questioned.

ESPECIALLY the Pastor's who could also end up in jail.

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As for what ultimately made Stan choose to let them go, Weisberg said, “unfortunately this one we’ve been getting asked a lot and we have taken a pretty tough line that we don’t want to answer that one, because we think that’s one that people are going to come up a lot of different answers of their own on.” He continued,

http://collider.com/the-americans-ending-explained#stan

How very very cowardly and lame of them, and yet they counter it by pretending to be "taking a tough line."

Sure dudes, sure you are.

You didn't write an ending.  Live with it.

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Another major emotional whammy in this finale was Paige’s (Holly Taylor) decision to abandon her parents and remain in the U.S. What is her plan, exactly? What should we take from that final vodka-filled scene in Claudia’s now empty apartment? Fields was mostly mum on the matter, “unfortunately, I think that’s another one where the intent is really to put it into the hands of the viewers and to the hearts of the viewers. And it’s not because we’re hiding something there, but it’s because that moment’s not a moment about plot. That’s a moment about where she’s at personally.”

To abandon your JOB, which is to finish the story or at least come close to that for at least one character.  Again, wow.

Nice try here Rhys, but she could also, you know, GO TO PRISON.  Or kill herself, or live off the streets, or live for several years working for McDonald's just to keep a roof over her head.

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Rhys added that while it was a shocking moment, it wasn’t done for the sake of shocking the audience. “It’s always incredibly well justified […] It gives the audience enough to go, ‘well, you know, any number of things [could happen].’ She can go in any number of directions now. She can, you know, continue her work, look after Henry. There’s so many variables presented to you in that moment and in a very poignant way.”

Edited by Umbelina.
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“And in a way that painting ‘Mother’ was a particularly penetrating and powerful one. I don’t know that we want to say all the reasons that we felt that would be a particularly powerful one for Elizabeth. We like to leave that up to the audiences’ imagination.

19th verse, same as the first, "it's all up to the viewers because we chose to not end anything, or tells you what any of the scenes meant."

Edited by Umbelina.
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I doubt Stan would even want to stay in the FBI after all this. Retirement seems very likely to me. And really....I could see him taking care of Renee himself. That would fit with his MO. Stan likes to do things on his own. 

I agree that Aderholt would not let Stan off the hook IF he got suspicious. Stan unintentionally covered himself decently well by bringing up the idea to him to begin with. I suppose he could think Stan brought that up to cover himself IF suspicion landed on the Jennings- but that would assume he knew for sure already  not that he later checked a hunch on his own.  

But really- unless Paige talks about him specifically - and realistically that could happen I know- there is no real reason to think that Stan looked for, found and let them get away. IIRC- he did say he went to Paige’s on a hunch. 

I tend to think if the only possible answer for these people was prison or death- we’d have gotten that. It was left open so people could go their own way with it. I also think an issue is how far ahead were they supposed to go? At what point is the Jennings family relationship considered resolved? Or P/E’s future in Russia? Or Paige talking? Or Henry dealing? Is it still paying the price if we saw they did see their kids again? Honestly- I would not have wanted a flash forward that included them just hating their parents. 

I didn’t really buy into Stan/Henry’s relationship, but adults/kids can have important relationships with each other. I didn’t much care for this one. My big issue was that I read a lot that Stan was a surrogate dad and that just seemed ridiculous. Much like P. Tim bring that for Paige. It was OOT. 

Regarding Paige and Henry- in no way do I think this will be easy for them. They’ll deal with this the rest of their lives. I think eventually there will be a reconciliation at some time. But they will always have a complicated relationship with their parents. Maybe Paige keeps her mouth shut. Maybe she admits to knowing the truth, and that’s all. And leaves spying and Stan out of it. There are various ways she could play it. But it still seems significant to me that both she and Stan have something on each other. 

Henry seems to have a lot of friends. I assume one of the parents could be a guardian. Or he could request to be emancipated. He’s pretty independent. His season arc was all about setting him up to not “need” adults. For a house, money, etc. Assuming he chooses to stay in school which is what P/E assumed. I pretty much assumed Henry was set up to be independent so P/E could leave him and feel okay about his future. 

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6 minutes ago, Erin9 said:

I didn’t really buy into Stan/Henry’s relationship, but adults/kids can have important relationships with each other. I didn’t much care for this one. My big issue was that I read a lot that Stan was a surrogate dad and that just seemed ridiculous. Much like P. Tim bring that for Paige. It was OOT. 

I think some of it was fueled by it being a way to disapprove of Philip and Elizabeth. Their being spies made them terrible parents so Stan making hot pockets for Henry made him father of the year. The fact that they never had a conflict became proof he was the real parent--same thing happened with Pastor Tim who was being paid to listen to Paige's problems and give her advice. The other person became a badge of shame that P&E had brought upon themselves by putting the EPCOT trip off until the time jump in S4.

The funny thing is that, of course, we know for a fact that Stan's son explicitly says Stan actually has many of his own flaws as a parent that are painful for him. And no doubt Pastor Tim's daughter might also grow up resenting people like Paige who call her father and he runs to help them when she wants him at home.

12 minutes ago, Erin9 said:

Henry seems to have a lot of friends. I assume one of the parents could be a guardian. Or he could request to be emancipated. He’s pretty independent. His season arc was all about setting him up to not “need” adults. For a house, money, etc. Assuming he chooses to stay in school which is what P/E assumed. I pretty much assumed Henry was set up to be independent so P/E could leave him and feel okay about his future. 

I thought that was the point too. Whatever legal problems would be there in the real world the general idea seemed to be that Henry was halfway into his adult life already. He'd arranged to live away from home until he left for college. That's why his parents saw it was wrong to take him away from it.

When Elizabeth says Henry is the same age she was when she went to work (same with Philip, probably) Paige says Henry's not like her (nobody is!) but he actually is.

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Henry is still a minor.

His own father couldn't pay his $9000 a semester.  How in the world could Henry?  Aside from the fact that this semester is almost over (Christmas) and he will be put in the custody of the state, because he's too young and has never even had a job.

Sorry, but there is not a chance Paige won't tell under FBI questioning, if only to "save Henry" by saying he didn't know.  We saw just how skilled Aderholt was questioning the Priest.  Paige will be questioned continuously.  This is an ongoing high priority case, "where are your parents" is only part of it.  Aderholt made it very clear that HIS priority is to round up "all of the illegals."  Paige has information to make that happen, and possible immunity, and definite less pressure on Henry (who will also be doubted and questioned) if she tells the FBI every single thing she knows.  The Pastors, Stan, the Garage, the missions she was on including The General...all of it.  The FBI will not give up until they know they have wrung her dry.

It's interesting to me that my "Worst Case" post has no likes and all, but the "Best Case" post has several.

We all want them to have happy endings, but honestly, it's so far from realistic that even in my "Best Case" list?  I didn't really believe that any of that could happen.

Edited by Umbelina.
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Honestly? I thought the priest went down easily. Philip says he’d fold fast, and he did. Aderholt wasn’t that impressive to me. He played the church card IIRC. Game over. No shock there. That is not to say I don’t think Aderholt has skills, but I wasn’t overly impressed either. But if I’m realistic- really and truly- Aderholt has as much a chance of working this case as Stan does- none. He was a friend of the Jennings too. 

Henry had already been working on his tuition issues and employment issues. I feel that was settled.  We’ll have to agree to disagree. Whether all the details are perfect or not- I think Henry was clearly set up to continue his life as it was. That’s why P/E agreed to leave him. 

Paige might cave. Or she might hang in there FOR Henry. She felt strongly he needed someone. And she knows the fbi has nothing on him. There is nothing. With Paige getting off the train....who really knows what she will or won’t do with certainty. And- nothing Paige says or doesn’t say can possible prove what Henry did or did not know. She can’t actually prove he knew nothing. But anyhow, we see it differently. If the only possibility the writers saw was Paige arrested- they could have ended it there. 

In a show about relationships, that’s what I think we’re meant to focus on future wise. That’s what the finale was about. It wasn’t about prison or death for a reason. 

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I think it's a bit disingenuous to accept the premise of this show, which is about two Russian illegals who regularly put their operations and lives on the line by breaking and entering to place bugs, getting into car chases, assassinating targets and leaving trails of dead innocent bystanders in their wake, and oh by the way they live across the street from and are best friends with an FBI counterintelligence agent- things that are blatantly unrealistic and solely there for dramatic purposes, but then absolutely reject the idea that Paige could not possibly withhold information in an interrogation because it's not realistic that the FBI wouldn't pressure her into revealing every last detail she knows. If she was strong enough to get off that train, she's strong enough not to volunteer information the FBI wouldn't even know to ask her about. 

because really, the FBI has no reason to suspect Paige is even involved at all, beyond going missing the same night her parents fled the country, and that could easily be explained as them spiriting her away on their flight to the border without her even knowing what was going on at first. Stan's not saying anything, and he's the only one who knows anything about Paige's knowledge or involvement. And the extent of that knowledge is that she found out her parents were spies and kept their secret. Even if she admitted to that, I don't think she'd go to prison for it. even in the real world I don't think someone who found out their parents were spies and kept the secret in that same circumstance in which Paige did would go to prison. Maybe she'd receive some sort of probation and lose her passport for a time and be monitored. Maybe they'd make her sign some sort of affidavit so that she could be easily arrested if they ever did find any proof she committed a crime, but they're not going to. Because she honestly didn't do anything that would leave evidence tying her to a crime. She even had a chance to gain access to classified files from her defense subcommittee intern boyfriend that she wanted to hand over, and Elizabeth refused, which definitely would have been treason had she done something like that, but which we are told explicitly that she didn't actually get around to doing.   

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17 minutes ago, Erin9 said:

In a show about relationships, that’s what I think we’re meant to focus on future wise. That’s what the finale was about. It wasn’t about prison or death for a reason. 

The writers didn't INTEND anything, as you can see if you read that article.  They didn't want to face the nearly inevitable ends for anyone so they left it up to the viewers.  You can have relationships in prison.  Or in a group home.  Or in the country that's destroyed in large part because of your actions.

1 minute ago, Plums said:

because really, the FBI has no reason to suspect Paige is even involved at all,

Stan knows.  They will question her either way, they have to.  Everything she could say could be another clue to help in their efforts to round up the others.

2 minutes ago, Plums said:

 Stan's not saying anything, and he's the only one who knows anything about Paige's knowledge or involvement. And the extent of that knowledge is that she found out her parents were spies and kept their secret.

We shall see.  Or rather, we won't see.  She let on that she knew much more, and Philip and Elizabeth quickly shutting her up was another clue.  I can't see Stan trusting immature Paige enough not to tell the FBI, and it will be worse for him if it doesn't come from him.  Aside from that, he has to warn them about Renee.  Or catch her himself.

2 minutes ago, Plums said:

Because she honestly didn't do anything that would leave evidence tying her to a crime.

Treason.  Accessory to 4 murders.  She was look out during the three murders at the warehouse, and also with the General's murder.

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I hadn't particularly considered before, but it's also possible that Paige is at risk from the many remaining KGB operatives in the DC area because, yes, they know that while Paige may not know much, she knows too much and, more importantly, but she can be silenced quite easily and permanently, all the better to punish her parents.  

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I think we really just have to agree to disagree on what will ultimately happen. We just have wildly different interpretations of the characters and the story. 

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5 minutes ago, Plums said:

I think we really just have to agree to disagree on what will ultimately happen. We just have wildly different interpretations of the characters and the story. 

Which is fine, and was the writer's intent.  Here guys, you finish the story!  Can't wait to read it!

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I have no idea what will happen.  I just realized that while Claudia's safe house has not yet been discovered or linked by the FBI and appears to have been "abandoned" by the KGB, it might still be under surveillance by them to see who/what turns up (including the FBI).  I just imagined that Paige will need to leave that "safety" eventually (is the phone turned off?).  The fact that P&E and Claudia have decamped did not make the DC area KGB free.  As I said, I hadn't thought about them, with all the talk about whether Stan can/will keep her safe and/or how many years she's likely to spend in the penitentiary.  Paige is pretty defense-less against all comers and the KGB could be another.  Henry's probably too far away and too insignificant to worry about, but wrt to spite and vengeance, they may come around to "worrying" about him. 

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I read the collider article and it is interesting, although I've never liked open ended make-your-own-adventure endings, particularly for complex characters.  My first was John Fowle's French Lieutenant's Woman -- which admittedly was interrupted by the author to discuss the two possible endings he was considering and could not decide between.  As I said elsewhere days ago, these writers left too many plates spinning when they turned off the lights (IMHO) and too many characters half-baked, intelligence, motivation and knowledge uncertain.   In hindsight, the authors aborted various story lines each year and then eventually provided a back-ward glance, but again without "closure" or even much increased clarity.  Since the authors created the characters, I really do want and expect their guidance in ending the journey and closing the book. ... at least much more than we were given (and yes, rushed and crowded in the end.) 

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6 hours ago, Umbelina said:
8 hours ago, Erin9 said:

In a show about relationships, that’s what I think we’re meant to focus on future wise. That’s what the finale was about. It wasn’t about prison or death for a reason. 

The writers didn't INTEND anything, as you can see if you read that article.  They didn't want to face the nearly inevitable ends for anyone so they left it up to the viewers.  You can have relationships in prison.  Or in a group home.  Or in the country that's destroyed in large part because of your actions.

I think the writers intended the very thing that frustrates you and many others - they left "what happens" open-ended. The thing they were careful to show was the status of relationships: who is together, who is alone, etc. I would love to know what they think will happen to each character, but for me, it also is very true to my experience watching the show to not know what happens next. For me, it's consistent with the tone of this particular show. 

I forget which article I read, but I will look for it - it was about the different types of series finales and the frustration/satisfaction that each provokes in the viewer (and of course, all viewers are different). I think the examples it cited were shows like Six Feet Under, Breaking Bad, The Sopranos. I will post it if I can find it! 

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 I forget which article I read, but I will look for it - it was about the different types of series finales and the frustration/satisfaction that each provokes in the viewer (and of course, all viewers are different). I think the examples it cited were shows like Six Feet Under, Breaking Bad, The Sopranos. I will post it if I can find it! 

I remember that article!  I think it's this?

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