The Deal is the fifth episode of Season Two of The Americans on FX, and the eighteenth episode overall.

Synopsis Edit

Philip and Elizabeth are finally assigned a new handler as Philip works to clean up the mess of the last operation and Elizabeth, in disguise as Clark's sister Jennifer, does her best to smooth things over with Martha. As Stan searches for a missing scientist, Oleg and Arkady continue to argue over how best to handle the situation on their side, leaving Nina once again caught between the FBI and KGB.

Plot Edit

Phillip and Elizabeth are left alone with the agent who attacked them. They hide him in a nearby deserted house, but are seen by the police on the way. Elizabeth goes for help while Phillip stays with the man, a Mossad agent named Yossi. The Rezidentura is informed and puts plans in motion to extract Anton, and starts negotiations with the Israelis to exchange Baklanov for the Mossad agent.

The Rezidentura sends Kate, the Jennings' new handler, with food and medical supplies. Phillip is unimpressed with her youth and questions her abilities. While they wait to hear whether their governments have closed a deal, Yossi tries to engage Phillip in conversation. He notes the icicles on the window and says he never saw them before coming to America, but "you probably had that back home, didn't you, Mr. KGB Man?" Phillip replies "I don't remember." Yossi assumes his government will not consider him valuable enough for a trade, and contrasts his worth ("bronze") with Phillip's ("platinum'). He says "I hide what I do. I don't hide who I am." He later unsuccessfully tries to escape while going to the bathroom.

Baklanov's disappearance triggers an alert at the FBI. Stan is called in, who contacts Gaad, to use his contacts with the Department of Defense to figure out why Baklanov is so important. But Gaad is stonewalled.

George hears Martha's phone messages to Clark, threatening to let the FBI know about their marriage. He notifies Elizabeth. She goes to meet Martha as Jennifer, Clark's sister. Martha gets drunk and confides in Elizabeth that Clark is an animal in bed. Elizabeth reminds her that Clark loves her, that his job his very important, and convinces her not to include information about her relationship with Clark on the FBI application form.

Meanwhile the KGB and Mossad agree to exchange Baklanov for Yossi. As part of the deal, the USSR releases 1,500 Refuseniks. As he's being returned to the Israelis, Yossi tells Phillip "We spent a night together and don't even know each other's names. But is your name your name? Is your face your face? Are your children your children?" On the long drive to the port, Baklanov begs Philip to have mercy on him, but Phillip remains stone-faced as he delivers him to a waiting ship, headed for the USSR. "You're a monster," says Baklanov. "You're not a man. Whatever you once were, whoever you were, they trained it out of you. No feeling, no humanity; you may as well be dead."

Nina is sent to Stan to give him enough information so he'll assume the KGB has Baklanov and Oleg intends to exfiltrate him. Stan and a crew of FBI agents follow Oleg as he leaves the Rezidentura, tailing him all the way to the Port of Baltimore. There, Oleg surprises Stan, informing him that he knows about Nina, and intends to blackmail him in order to keep that information secret.

Elizabeth meets again with Brad, who gives her the file on Andrew Larrick. When he tries to kiss her, she tells him to stop. She says it's taken her a while to start feeling things again. "It's the most natural thing in the world, right? ... I don't know why it's so hard. But it's something that I need to learn all over again."

Elizabeth returns home and falls asleep on the couch. Phillip finds her there after the transfer of Baklanov is complete, and curls up beside her asking "Were there icicles in Smolensk, in the winter?" He recalls having sword fights with them when he was a child. Elizabeth then says "When our train was pulling away from Moscow, there were icicles on the trees." Phillip turns around, looks at Elizabeth for long time, then nods his head and says "I remember."

Notes Edit

  • Keri Russell's character, Elizabeth Jennings, used the word 'buttinsky' – a meddler – when she (disguised as Clark's sister Jennifer) asked Martha how things were with Clark. The same word was used as an arc for Russell's famous character Felicity Porter, a kind but confused coed who wanted to help fix other's problems.
  • Columbia Record Club, formed in 1955, was an experiment to market music directly by mail, spurring sales to rural consumers. New members to the club were enticed with a free record just for joining. Columbia House attracted criticism for its business practices, which often resulted in members being sent music they did not want, and then had to pay shipping to return. A common requirement for joining was an agreement to purchase a certain number of albums in a specified period of time, often at prices significantly higher than those at brick-and-mortar retailers. Columbia Record Club had a significant market presence in the 1980s and early 1990s.
  • Just prior to her visit from Jennifer, Martha watches an episode of Hill Street Blues, a popular American serial police drama that aired on NBC from 1981 to 1987. The show chronicled the lives of the staff of a police station in an unnamed large city, with "blues" being a slang term for police officers for their blue uniforms. The show received critical acclaim, and its production innovations influenced many subsequent dramatic television series produced in the United States and Canada.
  • The news story about a request to increase the US military budget was taken from the February 2, 1982 New York Times.


Song Title Performer(s)
The Gambler Kenny Rogers


The Americans 2x05 Promo 'The Deal' HD

The Americans 2x05 Promo 'The Deal' HD

Season Two
#201 "Comrades" #208 "New Car"
#202 "Cardinal" #209 "Martial Eagle"
#203 "The Walk In" #210 "Yousaf"
#204 "A Little Night Music" #211 "Stealth"
#205 "The Deal" #212 "Operation Chronicle"
#206 "Behind the Red Door" #213 "Echo"
#207 "ARPANET"