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October 23, 2014

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Thoughts on 'Homeland's' Stellar Sunday Episode and Terrific Debut Season

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 14th 2011 12:00PM
My colleague Mike Hogan wrote about last night's 'Homeland' here and I recommend his weekly review, but I couldn't resist adding a few comments about the Showtime drama's outstanding Sunday episode.

If you're not watching 'Homeland,' you really need to catch up on this gripping drama (which I reviewed here). I already thought 'Homeland' was the best new show of the year, but Sunday's hour was in a different league from what came before it.

As I said in last week's Talking TV podcast, I was a little alarmed by a development in last week's episode -- I thought what happened between CIA agent Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) and former prisoner of war Nicholas Brody (Damian Lewis) might have been the kind of mistake that would force this promising show down cliched or unsatisfying paths.

I couldn't have been more wrong, and Sunday's episode proved that 'Homeland' knows exactly what it's doing. Within the context of a complex tale about the challenges of combating terrorism, 'Homeland' has proven it knows how to tell a rich, emotionally nuanced tale about the dangers of connection and the price of loneliness.

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'Homeland' Recap, Still With Brody-o-Meter: Episode 6, 'The Good Soldier'

by Michael Hogan, posted Nov 6th 2011 11:00PM
Homeland Episode 6 RecapWho's playing whom? That is the question posed by 'The Good Soldier,' the sixth and possibly best yet episode of Showtime's domestic-espionage drama 'Homeland.' As the hour ended, the audience was left pondering two possible scenarios. The first is that Carrie (Claire Danes) is an Agency Black Widow, spinning a psychosexual web to entrap her pray, the unwitting Sergeant Nicholas Brody (Damian Lewis). The second is that Brody is the one stitching the net, and that Carrie -- willful, impetuous, hot-headed Carrie -- is the one in danger of being eaten alive. Let's examine both in tonight's 'Homeland' recap, shall we?

On the one hand, you can view the episode this way: Having decided that her mission in life is to protect people from bad guys, Carrie un-empties her desk and starts looking for a way to prove her case against Brody, whom she is now convinced is a terrorist, based on her conviction that he passed Afsal Hamid the razor blade that allowed the detained terrorist to commit suicide and claim his allotted 72 virgins in Heaven. To that end, she suggests polygraphing all 11 of the people who had direct contact with Hamid, just in case, oh, any of them might not be able to correctly answer the question "Did you pass a razor blade to Afsal Hamid." Even Saul supports the plan, which will be important later.

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