Monday, December 10, 2012

PLEASE IMAGINE A SUCCESSFUL PUN INVOLVING 'CARRIE ON' AND 'WAYWARD SON': I don't have Showtime, so my viewing of Homeland is arrested at the end of Season 1. But a long-time reader has requested that I open up a thread for discussion of last night's episode, and we do requests. Spoil away in the comments.


  1. Thanks, Isaac! This week wasn't as insane as last week, but I'm still thinking about it.

    My initial thoughts - catching Nazir was oddly anticlimactic; there's still lots of mileage (probably) in figuring out what Roya's deal is; could Nazir's plan really have been as simple as killing the VP without taking credit?;

    I was really impressed with Damian Lewis's acting last night - his face was relaxed after Nazir's death, in a way we haven't seen very much/at all. Given the scenery-chewing of last week, I thought it added some credence to Emily Nussbaum's theory that he was, in fact, acting (for Carrie's benefit) last week.

    I was very relieved that the show didn't go down a "really, Nazir was here? But you don't have any proof? Have you taken your meds?" path where no one believes her but the audience knows. Homeland's usually been pretty good about avoiding the annoying trope of having the audience know more than the characters (I mean, we still don't know what Brody's deal is - which side is he on?) and I was glad they avoided it here.

    Finally, SAUL!

  2. I saw (I think on EW) a comment from the creators/writers to the effect that the drama for the season is over and now they can focus on the personal story in the finale. I really hope that's a fake-out. As Adlai says, if the most wanted terrorist in the world makes it onto U.S. soil, it had better be for a really good reason (other than the fact that it makes for good tv). I'd like to find out that Emily Nussbaum's theory is right, though I wonder whether it could be pulled off in a way that coheres with other things we have seen.

    I finally just need to note the beautiful and brutal honesty of the Brody/Jess scene in the car. Like many (and I'm assuming at least some others here), I've had that discussion. This is probably the most realistically I've seen it portrayed on television.

  3. bellawilfer1:24 PM

    Completely agree re: the "have you taken your meds" thing - I was so concerned that Quinn wasn't going to believe her and it was going to be a totally frustrating episode.

    Agree that Lewis's acting was much better this week than last (and, as a huge fan of the Nussbaum theory, I'd like to chalk it up to that), and I also loved Carrie's moment by Nazir's dead body - relief, pride, but also "I've spent years tracking this guy what?"

    Will someone please tell me I'm not the only one who thinks Estes is the mole?

  4. Adlai2:44 PM

    We are really learning a whole lot about Estes, for no reason I can figure - I mean, we don't know about him like we do about Saul, or Carrie, or Quinn (in terms of personality, etc.) - so I like the idea that he's the mole. Would explain his ubiquity.

  5. Adlai2:46 PM

    Seriously, Nazir had to come to the US for...what, exactly? To talk to Brody for 12 hours to ... get him to call in a favor for Roya? There really should be more to that story, something he had to do in person.

    Also, what's the deal with Brody's phone no longer being tapped in any way? I sort of hope Estes has just been capturing all of this info and will spring it on Carrie - otherwise it's sloppy.

  6. Given that we've blown past the realm of pseudo-realism I think they were trying for in season 1, I was kind of hoping we'd have a huge "Holy Shit" moment last night in which we learn that Nazir himself has been flipped, is being run/protected by Quinn, Estes, and FMA, and that the hit on Brody was all part of a plan to save this super-critical intel asset (i.e., Nazir). That would help explain his presence in the U.S. and could help explain some other oddities.

  7. To play this out: Nazir has flipped, Estes is on the inside, Saul is not (or, better, is a mole with loyalties to the Nazir group, which is now aligned against Nazir). We are being played to trust Saul over Estes, but Estes is actually the good guy trying (and now failing) to keep Nazir in play by facilitating his escape(s). And John LeCarre grins broadly. [This isn't a prediction. It's just how I would play out my last post.]

  8. bellawilfer3:41 PM

    Right? I just think pinning it all on Galvez is way too easy. There's something Estes is hiding (beyond just the Quinn stuff). And - while I definitely do not think Saul is the mole - why is he so weird about lie detector tests? (He failed that one in season 1, right?) I understand he played last night off as righteous indignation, but...?

  9. bellawilfer3:41 PM

    THAT would be amazing. Whoa.

  10. Watts5:16 PM

    I also think Carrie was somewhat disappointed Nazir had gone for "suicide by cop" because she wanted the chance to question/study him.

  11. I totally buy that Saul has a thing about the lie detector tests, and is sensitive because he is so bad at them. But perhaps that's the layering of Mandy-Patinkin-osity on all of that? Which leads me to wonder, is there a place in this world for people who are truly bad at hiding things? Even as analysts?

  12. Yes, all of this. I do hope there's something with Nazir beyond what we've seen. As we know from the pacemaker team, he does have influence elsewhere.

    Also (even with years of watching 24) I have an issue with Carrie having so much power and authority, having been discredited not that long ago. With the rogue team, for sure, but back at the office as if she'd never left?

  13. Duvall12:04 AM

    People are going to be really disappointed to learn that the mole is just Larry the polygraph guy, even though it was set up at the beginning of season one.