Amazon tries to make me feel old with The Americans

As we all hopefully know, the rather excellent spy drama The Americans is set in the 1980s. This in and of itself isn’t too remarkable, since practically everything is set in the 1980s these days. 

But to a lot of viewers my age, it’s a bit surprising to remember that’s not five or ten years ago (sounds about right, no?) but more than 30.

Wrong, wrong, wrong. No, how can that possibly be correct?!

But it is. And for people who aren’t my age, that’s a bit hard to deal with, even for the show’s stars

…And even some of the younger PAs on the set who are 18, 19 – I still blink hard when they say, “Well, we’re doing this period drama.”

Yes, that’s right. ‘A period drama.’ Gah!

It’s just got worse, though. Amazon has a slightly different classification for it.

Yes, lumped in under ‘historical TV shows’ with Copper (set in the 1860s) and Turn (setting: 1770s) is The Americans.

Thanks, Amazon. Thanks a bundle.


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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