Matthew Rhys Alter Egos


As we are inching closer and closer to the 2nd season, I am reminded of how great the actors really are in ‘The Americans’. Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys have proven themselves as really capable performers in their portrayals of seemingly normal American couples Philip and Elizabeth Jennings. But aside from that, they also play a roster of other characters or disguises to protect their cover. We’re going to take a look at Matthew Rhys’ different disguises from the first season of ‘The Americans’.

One of Philip’s first memorable disguises was the long haired man who appeared on the premiere of the show. Philip’s daughter Paige was being disrespected by this big guy who obviously had a thing for attractive under aged girls. Since Phillip could not beat the guy up inside a shopping mall, he got the big guy’s name, looked up his address, and dished out his revenge when no one was looking. It happened when the premiere episode was nearing its end and it was like a dessert that ended a very spectacular meal. The disguise actually had a name and it was Fernando. It also had a back story where Fernando was a Spaniard who taught flamenco classes and killed people on the side, you know, for extra income.

The 2nd episode ‘The Clock’ gave us another disguise, this time; Philip straightened his hair, combed it flat, and just put a simple dark mustache. The disguise struck with me because this is the first time that I saw Philip capable of violence and blackmail just to carry on with his orders. His disguise was a total opposite of his role as Philip the dad who was very friendly and a caring person. I guess mustaches turn him into a bad guy of sorts.

And to prove my theory of mustaches turning Philip into a total badass, let’s look at Martha’s lover, Clark. Clark doesn’t have a mustache, just the glasses and the wig. But even if the disguise is simple, I’m always surprised by the tenacity of Clark’s wig! It doesn’t come off, even when they are doing the sex scenes. Clark may be the most memorable of all disguises because he’s really involved in the story line, so much so that if feels like a totally different character.

Hopefully we’re going to see more disguises from Philip and Elizabeth. Aside from it being an integral part of preserving their cover, it’s fun to see the of the combinations of wigs, costumes, and extremely unkempt facial hair. Season 2 of the Americans starts shooting this October and will be premiering on January 2013.

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