It was an awkward “Dinner for Seven” in season four, episode 11 of The Americans. When Pastor Tim (Kelly AuCoin) dropped by to tell Philip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth (Keri Russell) that he was sorry that his wife Alice had accused them of foul play in his disappearance, Elizabeth invites him and Alice to dinner later in the week. Just before everyone sits down to that dinner, Henry answers the doorbell to find Stan Beeman (Noah Emmerich) there and invites him to join the others. Henry and Stan are the only ones who don’t realize the possible repercussions of the pastor and his wife learning that Soviet spies are friendly with a neighbor who also happens to be an FBI agent.
Later in a private meeting with Pastor Tim, Elizabeth is able to provide an innocent explanation by noting that you can’t choose your neighbors, and that they had lived in their house for many years before the Beemans moved in. Unfortunately, the situation with Young Hee and Don will not be resolved so easily. Gabe (Frank Langella) tells her that mission needs to go forward.
The mission unfolds with Elizabeth, as Patty, waiting until Young Hee and the children have left to confront Don (Rob Yang) with the information that she is pregnant. He tells her that she cannot have the baby as it would destroy everything. Patty leaves in tears. In the second part of the scheme, we learn why Tatiana requested a 50-60 year old female computer expert who speaks perfect English as Gabe, Philip, and this older woman pose as Patty’s family in order to gain access to Don’s office. After telling Don that Patty committed suicide, they demand money to cover funeral expenses. Don and Philip go to the bank leaving Gabe and the woman in his office. They go through his file cabinet and copy his computer files.
Elizabeth continues to be deeply troubled by what has transpired with Young Hee and Don. She asks Philip if Don will tell Young Hee, and it is hard for her to listen to a message from Young Hee begging her to call. She also has a couple of conversations with Pastor Tim. “I think that Philip and I are under a lot of pressure,” Elizabeth tearfully tells the pastor. She also tells him that “I think that I was coming apart.” In another chance meeting, she asks what to do if you can’t stop thinking of something (a reference to Young Hee and Don).
Elizabeth seems sincere in these encounters with Pastor Tim, however there remains a lingering suspicion about her motives when she tells Paige that she “would do anything to keep this family together.” When Paige says that Tim and Alice feel bad about threatening them, her mother responds that it could work in their favor.
Elizabeth isn’t the only one with seeds of doubt about Soviet spy tactics. After Stan tells Philip that he suspects Soviets were responsible for Agent Gaad’s death, Philip tells Elizabeth that he had included Gaad’s planned trip to Thailand in his report. This seems to confirm something that Stan said to him: “The KGB did it. They’re animals. They do things you can’t imagine.”
Oleg (Costa Ronin) has already had his faith in the Russian government challenged by the death of his brother and Nina. Perhaps a meeting with Stan brings about more questions in that regard. Stan tells him that the FBI wants him to blackmail Oleg into cooperating with them. He further states that the KGB was responsible for the deaths of Amador, Nina, and Gaad, and he doesn’t want Oleg’s death on his conscience too, so he will not see Oleg again. It is a very heartfelt speech by Stan and Noah Emmerich does a fine job delivering it. While Oleg maintains a poker face, it no doubt has had an effect on him.
The episode closes with Dennis Aderholt (Brandon J. Dirden) informing Stan of the suspicious death of the woman in the shop where the mail robot was taken for repairs, and with an encounter that Paige (Holly Taylor) and her mother have with men attempting to assault them in a dark parking lot. As Paige is telling Elizabeth about her conversation with Matthew Beeman, two men taunt Paige. Elizabeth fights with them and stabs one of them in front of a horrified Paige.