Homeland Review: Smartly Selfish

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It wasn't that much more evident than in the first three episodes of Homeland, but Carrie Matheson was certainly out for her own self interest this week, which was why the clever title of "Semper I" made so much sense.

Our favorite CIA analyst was finally starting to gain some steam on Abu Nazir and the case of the stolen necklace, picking up what seemed like trust and confidence from her team in Washington, but she just couldn't help herself.

Nick Brody Photo

The warrant on her surveillance ran out so she was relegated to the old stake-out technique, which is what forced her into the precarious situation of following Brody into the Veterans' support meeting.

Is she completely self-serving? Maybe. Does she act this way in an effort to hurt those around her? Absolutely not. She thinks what she is doing is the best for both herself and the country. Is there a mix of psychosis in there as well? Most likely yes, which makes it all the more interesting as we watch it unfold.

I really had no idea what her plan was when she walked into that church basement, and frankly, I'm not sure she did either. What resulted, though, was maybe the most interesting interaction of the season thus far.

Was Carrie putting on a complete front? Was Brody? Were they both? Was there some sort of strange, creepy chemistry between them? Or was that just part of the act?

Will this lead into more meetings between the two main characters? I sure hope so. Claire Danes and Damian Lewis are doing such a remarkable job on this series that we would be so lucky to get more scenes with them both. Not to mention all of the twists and turns the plot could take with Carrie and Brody interacting so often.

Before the two of them meet up again, I'm sure Carrie will spend most of her time looking for the man with the money, who she already put a red line through, as viewers know. Honestly, how good is that professor at picking up tails?* I also loved they had a code for "put the American flag on the house immediately!" It wasn't "hide," "run," or "kill yourself so they don't torture you into telling them information." It was "put the American flag on the house immediately."

*Upon second viewing I realized that it was someone else who picked up on the tail, who then notified the woman in the house.  Her signal of the flag was to the professor, who realized he shouldn't pull into the driveway...My bad.

The fact that the CIA has come to a dead end with the professor should give us ample time to get to know him better, while learning what Abu Nazir's plan is. I'm really looking forward to that viewpoint.

If I have one issue at this early point in the series, it is my lack of interest in Jessica and her Mike problem. Whenever the two of them get together for chats, I almost tune out. Then again, that situation lead to Brody's reaction, which was awesome. RIP, deer.

Lewis brings such a quiet strength to this role, as was exemplified in his scene with Mike in the car. I didn't know whether or not Brody was aware his wife was cheating with Mike, but the tone in his voice had me trembling in fear.

Do you know who is not trembling in fear? Carrie Matheson. The woman is a stone-cold stunner, and nobody is going to stop her from figuring this whole thing out. She made a lot of strides in "Semper I" and I can't wait to find out what happens next on Homeland. What about you?

Semper I Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (49 Votes)

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

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Homeland Season 1 Episode 4 Quotes

We've been on him for a month and we've come up empty.


I'm making sure there are no loose cannons rolling around on my deck, because if there are, I need to tie them down.