Inside Television with Alan Sepinwall

Review: 'The Americans' - 'New Car'

Philip considers a purchase, and the spies deal with tragic news from back home

<p>Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings in &quot;The Americans.&quot;</p>

Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings in "The Americans."

Credit: FX

A review of tonight's "The Americans" coming up just as soon as I sell one of my kids...

FX renews 'The Americans' for season 3

Spy drama is one of TV's best, and DVR usage has helped keep it alive

<p>FX has renewed &quot;The Americans,&quot; starring Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell.</p>

FX has renewed "The Americans," starring Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell.

Credit: FX

In a sign of the changing economics of the TV industry, as well as a boon for fans of quality television, FX has renewed "The Americans" for a third season of 13 episodes.

"The Americans," which stars Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys as KGB sleeper agents posing as an American couple in the early '80s, is one of the very best shows on television. Its live ratings, though, are modest, and have actually gone down a bit from last year's numbers. But the show also doubles its audience when you count those who watch via DVR or other methods within the first seven days of airing.

Every TV executive in the business has been trumpeting Live+7 numbers as a way to show that their audiences haven't slipped nearly as much as it seems from looking at overnight ratings. The question has been whether there's enough money to be made that way, given that advertisers aren't that interested in people who watch much later, especially if they'll be skipping commercials on their DVR'ed recording. But FX apparently has found a way to make the numbers work here.

When the second season premiered to disappointing numbers, FX's PR chief John Solberg said, "We fully expect 'The Americans' will be on our schedule for the next five years or more."

A new episode airs tonight at 10. It's a good one.

Series premiere review: 'Fargo' - 'The Crocodile's Dilemma'

Billy Bob Thornton and Martin Freeman take a trip to Coen brothers country

<p>Billy Bob Thornton goes driving at night on &quot;Fargo.&quot;</p>

Billy Bob Thornton goes driving at night on "Fargo."

Credit: FX

I reviewed FX's "Fargo" in advance this morning, and I have a few specific thoughts on the premiere coming up just as soon as I get more familiar with the ham...

Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 226

Dan and Alan also review WGN's 'Salem' and the 'Mad Men' premiere

The

With Dan out of town this week, you get only a single, audio-only installment of Firewall & Iceberg, as we review FX's "Fargo," the new season of "Orphan Black" and WGN's "Salem," talk a bit about the Colbert/Letterman shuffle, and then go spoiler-heavy on the "Mad Men" premiere and the "Game of Thrones" wedding episode. 

The rundown: 

"Fargo" (00:01:00 - 00:16:45)
"Orphan Black" (00:16:45 - 00:26:30)
"Salem" (00:26:30 - 00:35:45)
Listener Mail: Colbert and Comedy Central (00:36:10 - 00:43:25)
"Mad Men" (00:43:40 - 01:11:00)
"Game of Thrones" (00:1:11:00 - 01:31:45)
 
As always, send questions to firewalliceberg@hitfix.com. You can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. Or you can always follow our RSS Feed, download the MP3 file, subscribe on IHeartRadio or stream it on Dan's blog.

There's also now a complete archive of all the podcasts to date.

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