Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Pledge allegiance to The Americans’ season three teaser

FX’s drama The Americans has a high hurdle to clear if it hopes to surpass its stellar second season, but it’s an attainable goal if Frank Langella has anything to say about it. Granted, Langella doesn’t have much to say about anything in the first teaser for The Americans’ third season, but what he does offers a concise thematic summary of the Cold War-era spy thriller. “The operation is what’s crucial, because what we do is for the good of the many,” says Langella, who joins The Americans as Gabriel, Philip and Elizabeth Jennings’ new KGB handler. “Don’t let your conscience get you killed.”

From the looks of the teaser, the Jennings’ consciences might be the least of their problems, as they mourn the death of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev, squabble over about the wisdom of training their precocious daughter Paige to join the next generation of covert spies, and try to stay a step ahead of the feds using hilarious wig technology. The montage is set to “Every Breath You Take,” which, in addition to creating an unsettling mood, repeats the word “watch,” which is certain to draw more viewers to the low-rated show through the power of suggestion. Whatever works.

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The Americans returns to FX on Jan. 28.

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