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Homeland Review: The Sharpie Star

by at .  Updated at . Comments

Is Brody a hero?

That's a question that will be debated for many years to come.

Without question, Brody's been resilient. After surviving years as a Prisoner of War, Brody's life was continuing threatened after he returned  home. He almost blew himself up with a suicide vest, both Abu Nazir and the CIA considered assassinating him, and then he survived the Langley bombing to almost die in Caracas. 

Going into the Homeland season 3 finale, Brody's life was once again in danger. Would he find a way to survive once again? Or after fulfilling his mission for the United States would he finally be killed?

Closing In

As the first half of Homeland Season 3 Episode 12 progressed, it became increasingly clear that Brody wouldn't make it out of Iran alive. After killing Akbari, he barely made it out of the building and compound. At least he made it to Carrie and they were able to see each other again.

As soon as Javadi said he needed to capture Brody in order to secure his succession of Akbari, Brody's fate was sealed. Javadi's role was more important than any one life, especially that of a former terrorist. Or, at least that's how the President certainly saw it. Saul believed Brody as a member of their team who completed his mission and shouldn't be left behind.

Despite everything I was seeing on the screen, I kept hoping that Brody would once again survive. Each time Brody's escaped death, I've been glad to see him make it. Some may call me a Brody apologist, but he was a Marine who served his country. He was captured, tortured, manipulated and withstood more than any man should have to all for his country. That means something.

What came after needs to be looked at through a lens of what he withstood. It's not a pretty picture, but did Brody deserve to be deserted by his country after he completed his mission? No. He shouldn't have been sold out not even for the success of the mission. That was disturbing. 

At least Saul wasn't the one who betrayed Brody and Carrie. On the build up to his public hanging, I held out hope that he would be rescued. And to be honest, even after he was killed, I thought maybe Javadi faked it somehow and Brody would show up in the US alive and well.

Brody led a tragic life, but at least Carrie was able to get a little closure with him at the safe house and then on the phone. She believed that they were destined to cross paths and he agreed. Their's wasn't meant to be a happy ending though. They were there for each other through some of the darkest days of their lives.

Javadi's an evil man, but he had the poignant words about Carrie's dedication to the plan. Even though Brody was set to be executed, Javadi said that Carrie succeeded. She wanted everyone to see the Brody that she knew and now they all had, including Javadi. In the end, Brody was at peace with his execution. He never envisioned a future for himself and his pain would finally end.

Four months later ... life goes on. Saul pulled off an incredible feat by turning Javadi and getting Iran to open their borders to full nuclear inspections. A success, but he was still out and Lockhart was in. And surprisingly, Carrie was on Lockhart's side. Their contentious relationship ended at some point.

Carrie was promoted to Station Chief of Istanbul and she had a baby girl on the way. Carrie was confident in her ability to do her job, but struggled with the idea of being a mother. Carrie is scared at the prospect of being responsible for another. Her sister is probably right that a baby would help ground Carrie.

Going into Homeland season 4, the biggest question is what will Carrie do? As a Station Chief, Carrie won't have to do as much traveling, so in a way, it's the perfect job for her. And I can't imagine that she would give up this piece of Brody that she has left. Though, with Carrie anything's possible. 

After Lockhart denied her request to honor Brody with a star on Langley's wall, Carrie honored him in her own way. She added a black Sharpie star for him. Her star was an even more touching tribute to the man that she loved than an official star would have been by reflecting their rogue relationship.

RIP Nicholas Brody. You deserve it after all the suffering you endured.

Did you hope Brody would make it out alive? Was death the best future for Brody? Should Carrie keep the baby?

Review

Editor Rating: 4.8 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (89 Votes)

Carla Day is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.

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I wont watch next season. with or without Brody. what a shame that ending!

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Javadi faked hanging to bolster himself in Iran and with CIA. Saul knows which explains his current serenity . Brody needed a new identity anyway and can't live as himself in the US again . He and Saul can go Jack Bauer as carrie's go-to guys, with Quinn along too. Possibilities are vast. And Lewis has a long contract .

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Damn, that was sad imo.. Claire Danes and Damian Lewis are just freaking phenomenal together. Lots of great scenes including Carrie and Javadi. I hope that some how some way Brody is back next season. I doubt it, BUT fingers crossed. Looking forward to next season.

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So sad! It was a weird thing -- the storyline really just couldn't sustain Brody's continued existence, or at least his continuing to be part of the story, without going over the top. But you can see why they made the effort -- he's great character, Damian Lewis is a great actor, and the tension between him and Clare Danes' Carrie was electrifying. Sigh. Like many, I suspect, I was rooting for him to survive, even after all the options winked out, one by one. BTW, I disagree with whoever it was who said Carrie was acting like she didn't care. Did he miss the scene where she cried to her sister and dad about how f**king sad she was? That was powerful and convincing. I thought she was a little more pleasant to Lockhart than she needed to be -- but obviously this is her job, she loves it and she needs to keep it. In her own way, she's as political as anyone else. Or at least political enough to know what she needs to do to survive and succeed.

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This season, I found the several final episodes with Brody the best and most electrifying...but four months after his death, Carrie seems to be carrying on normally, behaving as if she hasn't lost the love of her life. Go figure. What a big disappointment.

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No way! This is not possible! No brody?! I hope that the next season Brody would appear, and the whole hanged killing scene was a show invented by Javadi, and that he decided to keep brody alive in the end. But if my dreams are not the case, I will not be watching the next season, for me, without brody (after all he went through) the show is over!

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I'm done with Homeland. I will not be watching Season 4.
I think the writers made a huge mistake cutting their lead actor Damian Lewis from most of the episodes of Season 3. They were not under pressure to kill him off, which was the case when Dan Stevens refused to renew for another season of Downton Abbey. For me, the relationship between Brody and Carrie is what kept me watching,
not the plot which became less and less believable and compelling as it evolved. Too many evil-doing skinny brown-skinned men with beards to keep track of them all. My husband quit the show 2 episodes ago; I stuck it out to the end, but with Brody gone, I'm no longer interested.

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It's like show finales that end as if it was all a dream sequence. Why go through all this drama with Carrie and Brody for no pay off... just killing him off? I can tell the writers boxed themselves in a corner with him and probably couldn't figure a way out but it cheats the audience of watching all this time. I agree they should have killed him off in Season One and then have carrie have a new threat in Season Two... like each season it's a different person/problem to solve. Have a feeling next season will be stupid and far fetched... esp without Brody.

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@ gregg brent

Season 4: Brody is dead, Carrie is a single mother in Istanbul, and Saul is working in the private sector in NY or somewhere else. Don't see much of a show there.

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Actually, in many ways, Saul and Carrie were the center of the show, with the Brody element as a tangent. In some ways, this season finale cemented that. I've seen conjecture that, somehow or other, Saul and Carrie will end up working together outside of the CIA - maybe she's going to join him in NY? As for the baby grounding Carrie, that is actually a dangerous gamble to take on someone who is bipolar. it is a HUGE amount of pressure for someone with that condition. One interesting side note. In an interview w/ the NY Times Magazine this weekend, Danes said that working on this show has given her a very different perspective on people who work for the CIA - more of a sense of their commitment to serving their country, regardless of personal cost. The season finale definitely seemed to fit that.

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There was really no way out for Brody. If he'd lived, gone back to the U.S., then what? He and Carrie move in together and raise the baby and pay the electric bill? It would not have felt right if Brody had gotten out of there and escaped. I kind of saw that one coming. That said, who's to say that he cannot show up as "dead Brody?" Kind of like Dexter's Dad, being a sort of role model for Carrie. The writers could fast-forward a few years ahead and make it more of futuristic look at terrorism and American politics. Carrie's baby would be a toddler, and the writers can use that a suspense device. A lot of options. I'm all in for EP 4!

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