The Colonel
The Colonel

Air Date May 1, 2013
Directed By Adam Arkin
Written By Joel Fields and Joe Weisberg
Previous Episode "The Oath"
Next Episode "Comrades"
Images of The Colonel

The Colonel is the season finale of Season One of The Americans on FX, and the thirteenth episode overall.  

Synopsis Edit

Elizabeth and Phillip are at risk of getting caught when they fear their assignments may be a set-up. Stan is convinced he'll find Nina a way out.

Plot Edit

After failing to pay child support, Sanford Prince is taken into custody.  Stan tells Agent Gaad that they should leave him alone until he panics and talks. As the meeting with the colonel approaches, Claudia and the Jennings worry that it has been compromised. Claudia tells Elizabeth of another meeting between Weinberger and James Baker which has been hastily arranged in Weinberger's office. The Center assigns Phillip to pick up the recording from the bug once it's over. Claudia also tells her she has been informed the Jennings requested she be reassigned. She says Elizabeth has been in the field too long, and has lost touch with both her central obligations, and the basic rules and regulations. Claudia has advised the Centre they're in danger of losing Elizabeth, whether Elizabeth realizes it or not. She tells Elizabeth "I know you better than you know yourself, and you don't know me, at all." 

Phillip and Elizabeth work out a plan for him to quickly take the kids to Canada if her meeting with the colonel goes bad. They realize that while normally they'd have a few days after capture before her identity was discovered, now they only have until Stan Beeman looks at her for Phillip and the kids to be in danger. They begin to argue when Phillip insists he will meet with the colonel instead, and that Elizabeth should be the one to pick up the tape and prepare to flee with Paige and Henry

The FBI has traces the Weinberger bug's recording device to a parked vehicle. Gaad, Stan and several other agents prepare a stakeout. Arkady tells Nina she will not face execution if she returns to stand trial in Russia. However, Moscow has agreed to accept her offer to spy on Stan.  

Claudia dons a disguise and goes to the apartment of Richard Patterson, whom she tricks into letting her inside. She stuns him with a taser, and injects him with a substance that leaves him unable to move for 20 minutes. She tells him this is 10 minutes longer than it will take him to bleed to death, as she slits his jugular. As he lies dying, she shows him a picture of Zhukov and says he was her friend. She then meets with Arkady who tells her she's being reassigned, and expected in Moscow on Tuesday. She reasserts her belief that the meeting with the colonel is a setup, and begs him to get the Jennings out of it.  

Stan tells Sandra that his mission will soon be over. He surprises her with a week's vacation to Jamaica, but she rebuffs his attempt at reconciliation. Next he approaches Nina and asks her to wait all afternoon in their safe house. He says after the day's events, she will not be returning to the Rezidentura, but be exfiltrated. He leaves and Nina stays behind, seriously tempted by his offer. Her conscience gets the better of her and she reports everything to Arkady. This leads Arkady to believe the meeting with the colonel will indeed be a setup, and he tries to abort it.  

Unsuccessful in his multiple attempts to persuade Elizabeth to switch missions, Phillip leaves her a note and meets with the colonel. During their conversation, the colonel asserts that the SDI project is technically infeasible and may even be a ruse to get the USSR to waste resources. When it is evident their meeting is not the trap, Phillip realizes the actual danger is in the mission to retrieve the Weinberger meeting recording. He races to pick up Elizabeth just as she reaches the parked car, with Stan, Gaad and multiple agents watching. They evade the FBI pursuit, but in the process, Elizabeth is shot in the abdomen by Stan.  

While Elizabeth is being treated at the deserted building, Phillip refuses to leave, instead phoning Stan and asking him to look after Paige and Henry. Recovering from her surgery, Elizabeth speaks to Phillip for the first time in their native Russian, asking him to "come home." Prince cracks under FBI pressure and tells them all he knows about the colonel, while Nina gives Arkady a file on Stan. Paige is increasingly puzzled by Elizabeth's behavior, and late at night surreptitiously enters the laundry room, curious to see what she can find.  

Notes Edit

  • Henry doesn't want to go with Phillip to his place, because he is watching the final game of the Stanley Cup, between the Minnesota North Stars and the New York Islanders. This game was played on Thursday, May 21, 1981 in New York. The Islanders won, 5-1. 


Song Title Performer(s)
Games Without Frontiers Peter Gabriel


The Americans 1x13 Promo The Colonel HD) Season Finale

The Americans 1x13 Promo The Colonel HD) Season Finale

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"