Homeland: “New Car Smell”
Whew...we're really moving fast now, aren't we?
October 23, 2012 3:45 pmAdam Blackwell
First of all, congrats to Homeland on being renewed for a third season. However, with the speed this season is taking on, any predictions about next season are basically shots in the dark.
There were a lot of interesting things that happened in this episode, but we'll discuss the relatively tame storylines first. Dana kisses Finn, the Vice President’s son - a sign of a budding Romance that also has implications for Brody - Dana knows Brody is a Muslim, and has let it slip before. Were she to open her mouth again to Finn, his dad may find out Brody's secret.
Jessica, upset with Brody for not being honest with her, kicks him out of the house. Later, Lauder shows up to the Brody home spewing conspiracy theories about Brody and Walker to Jessica, prompting her to call Mike to remove him. Lauder is a drunk, clearly troubled by his time at war, but Mike has noticed Brody’s strange behavior as well. Mike listens to Lauder’s theories, and suddenly, he is on Brody’s trail. Will we see a Mike/Brody showdown? Maybe. Let’s not forget, Mike has played a very submissive role in the context of the Brody family dynamic. He comes by to help out Jessica and the kids, but is careful not to overstep his boundaries, for fear of betraying his best friend. Yet he has always known in the back of his mind that something is up with Brody, but loyalty has kept him blind…at least until now.
But anyway, let’s get to the real point of this episode.
Things really start to kick in to gear when Estes, having finally seen Brody’s confession video, orders 24-hour video surveillance on Brody. Carrie shows up to the headquarters and meets Peter (Rupert Friend), an analyst sent over by Estes to run the show. Carrie is reluctant to trust Peter, but for the moment, he seems like a competent leader.
Peter has a plan: they'll invite Brody over to the CIA, and have Carrie “bump into” him. Peter hopes this will hint to Brody that they are on his trail, and send him running to his handlers. After an awkward encounter (the first Carrie/Brody moment this season), Carrie and the team spend some time watching Brody, and compile a list of everyone he communicates with. While they don’t catch him passing on the message to Roya, the reporter through which Abu Nazir communicates, they still add her to the list - something which could have implications in later episodes.
Speaking of implications, Carrie and Peter are watching Brody sit at a hotel bar when suddenly, Brody calls up Carrie asking to meet for a drink. Carrie agrees, and she meets him at the bar while Peter and Saul watch from HQ.
The ensuing scene is an example of everything I love about Homeland. Both parties here have something up their sleeves - Carrie is trying to throw Brody off his game, hinting that she is close to “the man who took eight years” of Brody’s life, Abu Nazir. She hopes that by dropping a hint like that, Brody will definitely scramble for his contacts in an effort to warn Nazir. Brody, on the other hand, made the first move. He’s trying to feel Carrie out, to see how close she is to finding out his true identity before he decides to act.
At first, it looks like Carrie is controlling the game. She responds to Brody’s questioning with little discretion, giving him all the answers he doesn’t want to hear. However, Brody shifts the conversation to Carrie’s electroshock therapy, and suddenly he’s secured the upper hand, putting Carrie on the defensive. Brody calls an end to the date, and heads back to his room. Carrie’s upset, she thinks Brody made her. She calls up Saul and Peter, who tell her to “get the fuck back” to headquarters. But, of course, Carrie will not listen, and heads up to Brody’s room.
Brody hears a knock on the door and opens it to find Carrie, looking sexy and basically inviting herself in. The tension here is extreme, but short lived. Carrie is quick to drop the biggest bomb in the show’s short history. She blows the whole operation, telling Brody his story “reeks of bullshit” and that she knows all about the suicide vest. Saul and Peter send in the capture team, and the episode ends in spectacular fashion with Brody getting cuffed and black bagged.
So this is it, the point of no return. Everything Homeland spent building in the first season collapsed in Sunday’s episode, only four episodes in to the second season. This could spell doom for the show as so much hinged on the cat-and-mouse game between Carrie and Brody, an element of the series that we will probably never see again. Dropping a bomb like this so early in the season is a huge risk. Where could we possibly go from here?
However, I wouldn’t be too worried…if anything, viewers should get excited. The writers of Homeland have proven themselves to be pretty damn brilliant, and the fact that they are moving through this season at such a drastic pace must mean they have something up their sleeves that no one is expecting,. Homeland is a guessing game, it baits us with hints and suggestions, encouraging us to make predictions about what will happen next. But with the way this season is going, I would encourage the opposite. Don’t try to figure out what will happen, because you won’t. Instead, sit back, trust the writers to drive this crazy train, and enjoy the ride. We don’t know where we’re headed, but rest assured, it’s going to be awesome.
|FIND YOUR GEEK RATING
out of 10