Homeland 4.10 or Hillary Told Us From The Beginning or Carrie-lite is Alright

homeland 4x10

Last night’s Homeland was brought to you by the later H. H stands for Hillary. Hillary of “you can’t keep snakes in your backyard and expect them not to bite your neighbors” fame. If you recall, we have heard Clinton deliver this line week after week all season long in the opening credits. You may or may not recall, however, the context in which they were originally spoken: to Pakistani officials in Islamabad in 2011 in relation to their protection of the Haqqani Taliban network which operates on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Sound familiar?

With that in the rear-view mirror, the Benghazi-like events of last night’s episode, entitled “13 Hours in Islamabad” (a direct reference to the book “13 Hours in Benghazi“), should ring even louder bells. Indeed, Homeland must have Dick Wolf on retainer because the “ripped from the headlines” feel of this season is stronger than ever before. Yes, it’s a television show but, these things are happening all the time and Homeland is pulling us cozy first-world civilians into the utter tragedy and helplessness that diplomats, intelligence, military, and third-world citizens have to suffer through in a state of war. And war doesn’t stop for love, and barely long enough for self-reflection. It just keeps going.

Speaking of love — confession: I respect and admire the hell out of this season of Homeland, and yet, week after week, I very secretly hope that in a fit of culpability and rage, Carrie will just bend Quinn over a desk and — well not exactly but you see where I’m going. Maybe I’m a shipper, or just a perv, but deep down it’s killing me that these two haven’t so much as touched one another all season… and yet I understand how very wrong it would be if they had by now. In fact, I’d like to thank the writers for sticking to the plot and not deviating into carnal melodramas. That’s what I have Scandal for.

Sunday night’s episode kept the ball of high-intensity action and drama rolling, and although the season isn’t over, the tragedy and truth to this week’s story should really strike a chord.

SAUL: First things first, someone lay him out to pasture, please.  His poor beaten and bruised body in the shower. Ugh, I cannot bare to see Saul suffer anymore.  I don’t think anyone saw this level of decay coming quite so quickly, if at all, for Saul. Or did you? I suppose the surprise comes from how strong he’s always been, in the hardest of times, making the most calculated decisions, and only ever really losing his cool over… Carrie.  Hmph, well I guess that’s it then: he’s been fantastic at making decisions from a distance but when it’s personal, in your face, it’s not quite the same. Don’t get me wrong, being a POW would tear anyone to a million unusable pieces but I don’t think I’m alone in expecting that a seasoned CIA director could handle it better, right? I had the same feeling of confusion with LOCKHART caving in as soon as Haqqani put a knife to Fara’s throat. Taking emotions out of the situation, tactically, what Lockhart did was the wrong decision and you don’t have to be CIA to know that. In the end, Lockhart and Saul are just two old bureaucrats who call the shots from the safety of their Langley offices. That’s the difference between being on American soil and being “out there”: safety; fear. Youth and military active training may have something to do with, too.

CARRIE: I’m a fan of Carrie’s character and all, and for that very reason I have to thumbs-up the decision to go Carrie-lite this week. We needed a break. She’s such an intense (and wonderful) mess — and Danes’ performances are so powerful — that the series puts itself at risk from going into a “Carrie overdose”, if you will. This is a common problem in the the 22+ episode network TV season, where a “filler” episode is thrown in to break up the story arc. Fillers get a bad wrap because they’re seen as a lazy way to just stop fleshing out the story and the characters. What was genius about this week’s Homeland was that, it bypassed the filler problem of Carrie by both (a) being IMMENSELY important story wise, and (b) giving us Quinn as her replacement. It was Quinn’s time to shine!

QUINN: Well, the TVPTB heard me last week when I hoped that Quinn and Fara* would be stepping back into the forefront this week. Just what the doctor ordered! Let’s recall that Quinn’s mental state at the beginning of this season was in shambles: a drunk, sleeping around with his landlady, living out of a motel room, threatening the CIA, etc. That is of course until Carrie calls him up and begs him to come and save her from the mess she has gotten into in Islamabad because she “fucking loves [him]“. He has reminded her on several occasions since then just how being in Pakistan is a personal favor to her before he leaves the CIA for good, and nothing more. Of course, it’s not quite as simple as that: he’s known it, as have we. If this really is Quinn’s last rodeo, he needs it to be a chance to redeem himself for all the blood he has on his hands. All jokes aside, one of the things that makes Quinn so attractive is his ability to do exactly the thing that Saul and Carrie cannot: be a soldier, and be a shot caller. Oh yeah and have a heart. Now that the mission is technically over (and failed to epic proportions), Quinn has gone rogue, so there’s no more favors to Carrie here. He’s doing this for himself.

*FARA: Rest in peace. Her softness, strength, and dedication for all the right reasons will surely be missed among this morally unstable crowd. She did so much, and like Max said, she was doing really well. I like to think that her family, devastated as they might be, are proud. (Nazanin Boniadi, I hope to see you again very soon!)

TASNEEM AND DENNIS: I’m grouping these two irredeemable assholes together because they deserve it. Dennis is irredeemable for obvious reasons which go beyond treason and into depths of cowardice too shameful to discuss.** Tasneem now, we know absolutely nothing about except for the fact that she’s a heinous bitch. Either we get to know why she is the way she is (we at least got that much from Haqqani!) or she needs to get blown into smithereens by the end of this season. And suffer! One way or another its just not very Homeland-like to introduce such a one dimensional character like that.

(**The scene between Martha and Dennis clocked in at roughly 4:30 in length. That’s a really long time to spend on an issue that ended in nothing. Which leads me to believe this is not the last of Dennis and Martha.)

KHAN: All we really saw of everyone’s favorite HISIG was the way he quivered in his shiny black dress shoes at Tasneem’s orders. I’m totally confused as to what the professional hierarchy is there. I’ve compared them to Carrie and Quinn before, and I suppose that would make sense, but even Quinn can bypass an order from Carrie if he feels its totally out of line. Khan is frozen by Tasneem’s order, and she doesn’t even make it sound like an order. Was it? Or am I just expecting too much from Khan?

QUESTIONS AND THEORIES

  • Will Lockhart lose his job over this? Who could take over? Dar Adal?
  • Tasneem did not seem surprised that Carrie called Khan’s cell phone directly after the attack, nor does Khan try to conceal it. So could he have given up his role in this to her already?
  • What will Quinn do with the matching cell phones he picked off the dead terrorist’s body at the embassy and the one he found on the Haqqani driver? A bomb? Use it as a tracking device? He seemed really into figuring out the mobile situation when he was interrogating Saul…
  • Carrie also has some demons to grapple with, primarily her guilt over Brody’s death. She brought Quinn to Islamabad so if dies out there trying to bring down Haqqani on his own (a suicide mission) she will have officially killed the only three men that ever loved her (including Aayan in this).
  • I had issues with why Haqqani wouldn’t have just shot Lockhart straight in the face as soon as he walked out of the lockdown room. I also don’t know what tactical reason Quinn and his soldier friend could have had for stealing radios but not guns off of the terrorists they shot down in the basement. Thoughts?
  • I’m sorry, I can’t help myself: will Carrie finally sleep with Quinn? Or will he at least tell her something awesome like “I was sure I loved you until I realized you’re half dead inside” and she cries and he goes back to the states and raises her baby while he waits for her to become a decent human? (Good thing I’m not writing this show, right?)
  • It occurs to me that a HUGE reason why this season is looking so good is that we never have to listen to Dana’s whining again. C’mon. I know you all agree!
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One Comment

  1. hystericalselcouth
    Posted December 10, 2014 at 8:03 am | Permalink | Reply

    Oh, you’re definitely a shipper!

One Trackback

  1. […] they were doppelgängers of the characters we’ve come to know and recognize. Also, yes, I totally called it last week that Dar Adal would be making a play for Lockhart’s position as CIA Director. I […]

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