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‘The Americans’ ending in 2018, FX announces

Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell star in FX's

Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell star in FX's "The Americans." Photo Credit: FX / Craig Blankenhorn

“The Americans” — FX’s critically cherished period drama about a pair of Soviet spies — will wrap in 2018, the network announced Wednesday.

The final two seasons will comprise a total of 23 episodes, or 13 next season followed by 10 in the sixth and final season.

“It’s hard to believe we’re heading into the final stretch on ‘The Americans,’ and we’re so grateful to know we’ll be telling the story to its conclusion,” said Joel Fields and Joe Weisberg, the show’s executive producers, in a statement.

This rates as a minor surprise. Esteemed shows like “The Americans” usually get a longer life line, even if there is no magic number. Perhaps one reason: FX simultaneously announced a deal with Fields and Weisberg to produce a new series.

While most critics have lavished praise — FX even appended its news release with a laundry-list of encomia — the show has yet to break into the ranks of TV series that help drain water coolers, or (even better) break the Internet. Moreover, Emmy voters have treated it like a pariah: Over four seasons, the show has received only five nominations, none for the major acting or best drama awards. Critical encomia is nice — Emmy awards are much better.

Why the Emmy chill? That’s unclear, but at least “The Americans” now has two more seasons to warm up the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

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