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Homeland

Homeland Review: It Feels Good

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I had two major concerns coming into the second season of Homeland:

  1. Whether The Powers That Be could come up with a story as earnestly interesting as the phenomenal one they came up with to start the series.
  2. Whether they could continue to jerk the viewer around as incredibly as they did in Homeland Season 1 now that he/isn't he question regarding Brody wasn't relevant anymore.

Through five episodes, it is obvious that the story telling has been just as tremendous, partly due to the fabulous risks they haven't taken in terms of pacing. And after watching "Q&A," it's clear the writers can get viewers all turned around no matter what the issue is.

Brody in Custody

With something as seemingly simple as the interrogation of Brody, the series still managed to make me unable able to figure everything out.

At first I was angry Carrie didn't get to take lead, and then I quickly changed my mind because Quinn's calm demeanor intrigued me. I never saw his subsequent fit of rage coming, and thought to myself: 'Well they had to write that in so that Carrie would be able to get in on the interrogation.'

When it was revealed that Quinn was simply playing bad cop, it became obvious that a) he's really good at his job, and b) Homeland can misdirect the viewer at even the most unexpected times.

I would be remiss if I didn't confirm that not only was all of that interrogation incredibly written, but it was also unsurprisingly superbly acted. Those moments when Carrie and Brody were crying together? They were heart-pumping and heart-breaking all at the same time.

The more Carrie went on and on about how in love with him she was, the more I started to wonder how much of that conversation was performance and how much was straight up truth. I could be convinced of a lot of things at this point. Claire Danes is that good, and this character is that confusing emotionally.

Was she totally BSing Brody? Playing him with every word? Or is she truly that empathetic? Or that damaged? Were her feelings ever real? Are they still? The layered characters force us to ask that question and, best yet, the show itself will likely never answer them. There is so simple answer.

As great as all of it was, though, don't you think they could have gotten the same result by simply giving him the ultimatum at the very beginning? "We have this tape of you saying you are a terrorist, we can either take you to court or you can help us with Nazir."

Sure, getting him more emotionally drained and attached might help in getting him to actually work at assisting the CIA, but I don't think it was needed to get him to agree to that. But then again, maybe if Carrie hadn't reminded him about his true feelings for his family he wouldn't have cared if he took this thing to trial. Maybe.

Now that he is in, I am most interested to see what happens between Brody and Carrie. The fact that their cover is that they're having an affair should make things even more complicated. How will that play into their real feelings, especially Carrie's? Color me intrigued.

While all of that was going on, Dana also got into a bit fun. Well, she and Finn called it fun. I call it reckless driving and manslaughter. If that's what kids are calling fun these days, I'm glad I'm an old timer. Where's Xander with the pot when you need him, right?

What do you all think about what happened with Dana and Finn? What was your favorite part about the interrogation? And how darn good has Homeland Season 2 been?!? Sound off in the comments.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (126 Votes)

Dan Forcella is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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    17 Comments New Comment Subscribe

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    Great acting. Simply said. Lewis and Danes are excellent, as well as the other cast. I've really enjoyed season 2 so far, where it might go. I'm a little leery what Saul is doing. Could that be a new twist, somehow ... have Saul be involved? I don't think so, but it's just thrown out there. Dana may play a big role at the end, again. It's been good. No holes in the story, but a few things that I caught kind of weird: they call Nick Brody by his last name all the time. Even his wife calls him Brody. Most people don't call you by your last name, especially your spouse. No big deal, though. And found it odd that Carrie suddenly remembers everything about her and Brody's moments at the cabin after electro shock therapy.

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    Homeland, read the reviews and bought season 1.
    If The Wire was a 10 then Homelan is like a 4? So predicable and cornie. There is a scene in the 3rd episode where the mother has her hands on the shoulders of the son while they watch an 8 point buck wnader up in there back yard? Someone call Walt-D, they are stealing his schtick!!!

    Not that good, but lots of unessesary sex and nudity, that's cool.

    Later....

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    I also considered this Finn/Dana side story a little unnecessary. Although, with this show, you'll never know what it will lead to. I can't imagine this relationship will stay sideline for long. Somehow this will be incorporated into the main story line. Could imagine Brody gets a hint of this and can use it as leverage, or whatever. Don't judge prematurely on the side story, the authors are better than that. Be prepared to be surprised.

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    WOW...Amazing episode! :)
    Carrie and Brody, who's playing who? I definitely don't trust Brody he didn't tell her he DID hit the bomb switch...it just didn't go off. He killed Tom Walker and the bomb vest guy. Now that he KNOWS she still LOVES him, I think he going to play on that! Carrie is so "emotionally confused" (I like how you describe her) she can easily LOSE ALL OBJECTIVITY where Brody in concern.

    Damn this is a good show! Can't wait to next week!!! :)

    The Veep's son is a little azzhole, just like his Dad! Dana what have you gotten yourself into! When she told him to go faster, I knew something bad was going to happen.

    Homeland between 2.04 and 2.05 the BEST two episodes on TV this season. They are going to sweep the Emmys again!!!!

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    Brilliant episode. The reason the agents interrogated Brody in that manner was to have him admit to wearing the suicide vest, which he eventually did when Carrie asked him to name the person who gave him the vest.

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    The only problem with this show is that watching ANYthing else just pales in comparison.

    To basically develop the relationship between Carrie and Brody and have THAT be the reason Brody breaks, and that he also broke because he knew Carrie herself was being honest made it all so realistic and human. So now there's a "romance" or sorts going on with them, rising out of their hatred/love for each other. Carrie was able to break Brody because she meant everything she said.

    Agreed that the car crash was a bit cheesy as any kind of plot twist, but that's minor compared to the fact that every episode of this season has lived up to and beyond the first.

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    Holy Crap!!! That was amazing. I was totally transfixed, Wow! this show is so good, and this episode was my favorite of the series so far. So emotional, but still on the edge of my seat. Congrats to everyone involved with this show... Always keeps me guessing and pulls me in. I can't wait to see how Carrie and Brody interact now, and the crazy twists and turns that I'm sure are ahead!

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    ok, did anyone noticed that before Peter Quinn started to interrogate Brody (around 7th minute of the show), Saul had the same tick as Brody in Season 1 episode 1 (like a morse code tapped by fingers)

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    Trust nothing with show. That's what I have learned. Who was playing whom? One begins to wonder if Carrie was playing herself or the CIA agents she is, but was Brody playing her and giving her what she wants?

    In some ways I hope the show isn't changing directions by making Brody a good guy.

    And Damian Lewis and Claire Danes just assured themselves of Emmys again with their masterful performances. Is there better acting on TV today, considering the demands on their parts.

    Edge of your seats thriller. The best episode yet. What next? Can't wait.

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    Don't trust Brody it was way too easy.




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