Safe House is the ninth episode of Season One of The Americans on FX, and the ninth episode overall.


Phillip and Elizabeth shock their children when they announce they are separating. After Amador goes missing, Gaad orders an unauthorized mission to grab a KGB agent in retaliation. Events soon spin out of control and come to a grisly end.

Plot Edit

Phillip and Elizabeth tell their kids that they are going to live apart for a while; this isn't received well and Paige blames Elizabeth. Phillip moves into a motel but the following day, the entire family attends a party at the Beeman's house, where several of Stan's work colleagues are also present. Agent Gaad tells them he plans to kill Arkady in retaliation for the recent deaths of three FBI agents. Neither Phillip nor Elizabeth hear this conversation. Stan is not supportive of the plan, and declines to participate.

Clark/Phillip spends the night with Martha, who tells him she loves him and would do anything for him. She just needs to know one thing: "Is this real?" The next morning before she goes to work, Martha tells Clark she suspects Gaad is making arrangements to kill a KGB agent. Meanwhile, Amador has been conducting unauthorized surveillance on Martha, suspicious that she is seeing someone else because she rebuffed his advances. He confronts Clark outside her apartment as he's leaving, and despite having no grounds, attempts to arrest him. They fight, leading to Amador being seriously injured by Phillip with his own knife. Phillip puts him into the trunk of his car and drives to a safe location, arranging for Elizabeth to bring medical supplies. The Jennings attempt to keep Amador alive, realizing he will know whom Gaad intends to kill, and hoping to use this unexpected situation to find out.

Stan grows increasingly agitated as the day drags on without word from Amador. Despite scant evidence, he is convinced Amador has been kidnapped by the KGB. Stan meets with Nina in his car, demanding she tell him who took his partner. It's clear from her response she doesn't know what he's talking about, but Stan grabs her by the arm and jerks her roughly, saying "Don't lie to me!" She screams that he's hurting her and insists he let her go. He orders her to "Find out who took Amador. You find out where he is. Now." Nina breaks free and exits the car, confused and hurt.

As Gaad and his operatives prepare to kill Arkady, Stan suddenly joins them. He begs Gaad to take Arkady alive, believing that to kill him would "sign Amador's death certificate." Arkady does not go on his usual run due to an injured hand, and the agents encounter only Vlad, a young and unimportant Rezidentura employee. The team is ordered to abort their mission, but Stan contradicts this by urging them to grab Vlad anyway.

Despite Gaad's misgivings, he allows Stan to interrogate Vlad. Scenes of Stan questioning Vlad (who is innocent and knows nothing) alternate with scenes of the Jennings questioning Amador (who insists on his innocence but knows the information the Jennings want to learn). Stan contacts the Rezidentura, hoping to trade Vlad for Amador. As the staff at the Rezidentura do not have Amador and are unaware of his whereabouts, Stan's attempts to negotiate a trade go nowhere. To Phillip and Elizabeth's dismay, they are unable to save Amador, or get any useful information from him. Before dying, Amador asks what time it is, and then happily announces Arkady is dead. Later, when the Jennings confirm this is not true, they are confused about Amador's motivation for (supposedly) lying. They dump Amador's body and when it is discovered, an enraged Stan shoots Vlad in the back of the head.

Notes Edit

  • At Stan's party, Game 7 of the National Hockey League's Eastern quarterfinals is playing on the tv. This game was played April 26, 1981 in Philadelphia, between the Flyers and the Calgary Flames. The Flames won, 4-1.


Song Title Performer(s)
Good Days The Gringos
What You Gonna Do (When She Says Goodbye) Pablo Cruise


The Americans 1x09 Promo 'Safe House' HD)

The Americans 1x09 Promo 'Safe House' HD)

Season One
#101 "Pilot" #108 "Mutually Assured Destruction"
#102 "The Clock" #109 "Safe House"
#103 "Gregory" #110 "Only You"
#104 "In Control" #111 "Covert War"
#105 "COMINT" #112 "The Oath"
#106 "Trust Me" #113 "The Colonel"
#107 "Duty and Honor"