"I like to keep my wits when I'm handling snakes." ― Elizabeth to Claudia
Philip and Elizabeth's troubled marriage is further tested when a mission to discredit a Polish pro-democracy leader reunites Philip with his old flame.
|At home, Henry is bored with a newscast about Polish dissident Andrzej Bielawski who wants to form an independent, anti-Soviet Polish government while in exile. Andrzej is in NYC to address the United Nation general assembly. Still angry over Elizabeth's betrayal, Philip tries to reconcile with her as she drops him off at the train station. She's worried about his mission in NYC and that he'll be meeting a female agent, Irina Semenova, an ex-lover of his. In the station, Philip remembers meeting Irina in Russia. In NYC, Philip registers for a travel agent convention and passes Andrzej in a hotel lobby.
|Philip watches as Charles Duluth interviews Andrzej on TV. In disguise at a casino, Elizabeth approaches an unsuccessful gambler named Sanford Prince. (♫ Fad Gadget - The Box ♫) She tells him she's a friend of Adam Dorwin, to whom Sanford has been passing secrets to for the last 18 months. Sanford isn't intimidated that Elizabeth killed Dorwin and pathetically says he's dead already. She meets with Claudia and reports that Sanford has gambling debts of $20,000 which he may be killed over. Philip meets Irina at the convention where she is posing as "Anne" from Montreal. Claudia apologizes for Philip and Elizabeth's abduction, which Elizabeth doesn't accept and they have a contentious conversation.
|Philip remembers meeting Irina in Russia and proudly telling her he'd been accepted to an elite academy although it meant they'd be apart for a year. Meeting for a quick drink, Irina learns of Philip's family while she mentions her husband died but she has a son. Elizabeth and the kids go to the Beemans' for dinner. At dinner, Duluth plies Andrzej with wine and introduces him to Irina, who speaks fluent Polish. Making an excuse he has to leave for a work emergency, he leaves them alone for dinner. Stan calls home that he won't be there until late which brings derision from Matthew. Irina and Andrzej hit it off and later, walk back to their hotel with Andrzej's bodyguards in tow.
|Dressed in sweats, Philip mugs Irina, who suffers a badly cut knee, while Andrzej's knuckles are cut. At the FBI, Chris Amador convinces Stan to come to a bar with him. Sandra confesses to Elizabeth that their marriage is in trouble. She expresses admiration that Elizabeth and Philip are able to work together professionally. At Andrzej's hotel room, Irina get blood from her knee on his bedspread while he tends to her wound. She then drugs his wine, offers herself to him, which he refuses. At a bar, Chris tries to convince Stan to pick up a woman there. In Philip's hotel room, Irina shows Philip a picture of a young man in a Russian army uniform, Mischa, and says he's his son. She then says she's ready and Philip strikes her several times in the face.
|Stan arranges to meet with Nina but can't explain why. Seeing he's drunk and wants her, she kisses him. Elizabeth calls Philip and wakes him in bed. Saying she misses him and wants him to come home, Philip hangs up. Irina rolls over on top of Philip and kisses him. Stan and Nina get dressed in a hotel room. Nina tells Stan she will not blackmail him because of their liaison and to not worry. In the morning, Duluth breaks into Andrzej's hotel room where he shows a very hungover Andrzej pictures of a beaten Irina taken at a police station. Andrzej begs for Duluth's help.
|Irina tells Philip she can't do the horrible things their job requires anymore. Planning to disappear, she asks him to join her. In disguise, Elizabeth visits the moving company of Ray Fucci, who Sanford Prince owes the $20,000 to. She pays off Sanford's debt and forcefully gets Fucci to back off Sanford. Stan meets Frank Gaad in his office where Stan expresses concern for Nina and Gaad deduces they've had sex. Philip meets Irina at the train station but declines to come with her, saying "I have a wife, a family." He asks her if "the boy" is real and she replies "Only duty and honor are real, Mischa. Isn't that what we were told?"
|Elizabeth meets Prince on a deserted road, informing him she has paid his debt and that he now belongs to her. He speaks of a breakthrough in missile defense and hands her a thick envelope. Philip returns home where Paige and Henry are not excited to see him. He smiles, knowing he made the right decision to stay. Despite Philip speaking brusquely to Elizabeth, she approaches him gently and again says she missed him. She says she wants to try to make their marriage "real" and not a sham. Philip agrees to try, however, when Elizabeth asks if anything happened between him and Irina he lies that "Nothing happened. There's only you. It has always been you."
- During Claudia and Elizabeth's acrimonious meeting, Claudia says she'd hate to see Elizabeth throw herself in front of a train and that bad things happen not only in literature, referencing Anna Karenina.
- As Philip gets dressed in his hotel room, preparing to pose as a purse-snatcher who intercepts Irina and Bielawski on their walk, US President Ronald Reagan speaks on TV. The footage shown was taken from Reagan's December 23, 1981 Christmas address to the nation, which included an update on the "Polish situation." However, it is likely this episode occurred in early April 1981, falling between the assassination attempt on Reagan (March 30, In Control) and Game 7 of the NHL Eastern quarterfinals (April 26, Safe House). (see Timeline of Historical Events)
- "Previously on The Americans" voice: Elizabeth.
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