'The Americans' season finale: Surviving an incredible episode in 'The Colonel'

Breathe. Do not forget to breathe. Your enjoyment of "The Americans" requires you to stay alive long enough to truly appreciate the incredible -- but real -- genius of the show's Season 1 finale. No matter how much anyone studied history or could have guessed about what was coming, "The Colonel" still managed to shock and surprise from beginning to end.It's going to be a long almost-year to wait before we find out what happens next.Crises of conscience and related international crisesPhilip and Elizabeth Jennings (Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell) have not one but two missions to accomplish before the season ends. The first is an everyday thing: Someone has to go retrieve a recording from Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger's study bug. The other mission is a little more dangerous, as it requires one of them to meet with a Colonel who knows all about the Reagan administration's Star Wars program.But all is not...



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