A Television Review by Akash Singh
NOTE: SPOILERS OCCUR!!!!!!!
Homeland’s third season premieres with a quiet episode that is far more interested in the ramifications of what happened in the Season 2 finale than immediately charging a new path for itself. There’s a few story threads that are dropped in, but largely the hour is focused on understanding the political ramifications of a second major attack on American soil. This makes sense and ultimately why I love Homeland. It sometimes loses its way (honestly, which drama hasn’t?) but it always tries to do the more difficult thing and analyze its characters and what they’ve gone through. The emotional arcs are always what tie Homeland together, occasional plot plausibility be damned (not entirely, of course). It’s a quiet hour full of Jon le Carré references that mark how utterly different Homeland is from standard espionage dramas. Occasionally it does feel messy, but unlike a lot of other prestige dramas, it operates in the here and now. And the here and now is messy.
The centerpiece of the episode, however, revolves around a Congressional hearing that’s investigating the Langley bombing from the end of Season 2. Senator Lockhart, apparently in charge of the investigation, brings out a memo indicative of the agreement last season between the CIA and Brody. Carrie spills subtly that she doesn’t believe that Brody was responsible for the bombing. That doesn’t help her case, nor does her absence when she was helping Brody escape. The bombing itself has left a massive crater, the site of where 219 lost their lives on the cause of Abu Nazir. But the mastermind behind the bombing is an Iranian official by the name of Majid Javadi. Even though attacking him is difficult, considering he has been out of sight since 1994, his associates are found and their assassinations are ordered instantly. Quinn is respionsbile for one of the assassinations, against a man codenamed “The Tin Man.” Quinn notices a little boy with his target and avoids killing the Tin Man to avoid the potential death of the child. In a horrible twist of irony, the child dies anyway along with the Tin Man himself.
The Brodys have been completely torn asunder. Dana tried to commit suicide, Chris still exists in the shadows, and Jessica is struggling to make ends meet. The revelation of Brody’s tape at the end of last season made them instant social pariahs. On the other outcast front, at the end of the episode Carrie suffers a horrible betrayal from Saul. The CIA has leaked a story about an agent sleeping with Brody and Saul confirms it as much at the hearing itself. But he adds in another layer of hurt when he reveals Carrie’s bi-polar disorder and how she kept it from her employers. Carrie’s face breaks apart as she stares at the television screen. The chickens have come home to roost at home, it appears.
Title: Tin Man is Down
Written By: Alex Gansa & Barbara Hall
Directed By: Lesli Linka Glatter
Image Courtesy: The Huffington Post