Homeland continued to excel in keeping the audience in the dark in "New Car Smell," specifically in that final scene between Carrie and Brody. WOW.
Honestly, I don't know who did a better acting job in those few scenes: Claire Danes, Damian Lewis... or Carrie Mathison. The first two were obviously fantastic, but Carrie seemed to have everyone fooled with that performance.
Whether attempting to take down Brody right then and there was the right decision in the long run won't be answered right now, but the question of whether or not Carrie is back to her old self seemed to be confirmed with her actions.
I didn't know in the slightest what she was up to when she knocked on that door to his hotel room. Was she just trying to get in the sack to keep the plan going? Was she fishing for something and hoping she didn't get caught in a bad spot? Or was it her plan to get him alone like that in order to get him to incriminate himself the entire time?
But as great as that moment was, I think I preferred the scene just prior to it, when Carrie and Brody were seemingly feeling each other out. She slipped to him that she was working on a terrorist, he joked "as long as it's not me," and so she revealed it was the big guy. The whole sequence was so intriguing because it was impossible to figure out what either one was going to do next.
Earlier, when they met in front of the CIA building, we knew exactly what would happen. They would meet, he'd be a bit surprised, she'd lay it on thick, and they would go their separate ways. That didn't make it any less enjoyable to watch, though. arrie was interacting with the man who almost ruined her life for the first time in a long while, and Brody was thinking a mile a minute, trying to figure out what the heck she was doing there. That was really good.
What wasn't good was that terrible line Dana threw out at the top of the Washington Monument: "Makes you realize there's this whole big world out there." I literally laughed out loud harder than I did at half the comedies I watched last week. The writers’ room must have been wracking their brains trying to come up with something, anything that sounded less corny. Alas, that's what they ended up with.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not hating the story line in general. The Veep's kid angle could create a lot of interesting situations for Dana, and they might be very entertaining for us to watch. Let's put it this way: it's better than her staying with Xander.
While there was absolutely nothing wrong with it in this episode, I'm afraid of where the arc of this new guy running the crew might go. He was kind of a jerk, and he's new to the fold, so my immediate reaction was that he was going to turn out to be dirty. If he does, that would be a travesty to the story telling of Homeland. It's from the 24 playbook, and in this case, that's not a good book to be reading from.
Elsewhere, Jessica gave Brody one more chance to stay home, but he passed, and Lauder continued to dig up dirty on Brody's involvement in the Tom Walker issue. Sure, there were a couple of things that prevented the episode from being a perfect 10, but the final few moments alone certainly made "New Car Smell" as entertaining as anything else on television.
What did you all think? What was your favorite moment? What was your least favorite part? And where on earth will the go from here?
Dan Forcella is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.