Season two was probably the best season that Homeland had produced up to that point, so my expectation for three was phenomenal. It turned out to not be nearly as great. I think they needed this slower season to show how frazzled the intelligence community was by the bombing of the CIA – if this season had exploded like two it would have felt insincere and impossible. I still really enjoyed it though, even with Carrie getting more and more out of hand.
What I liked:
The hearing at the start of the season: It makes you understand how serious the American government takes it that the guys who are supposed to protecting them from terrorists got their headquarters bombed… by terrorists.
The acting: I could name each and every actor and actress that did their role spectacularly, but as that would be the entire crew; I won’t waste our time here. From Claire Danes down to someone in a small role, it is quite clear that the producers were serious about casting and that they wouldn’t stop until someone perfect was found. I especially admire Claire Danes for her role as Carrie – you have to be absolutely brilliant to play such an annoying fucking person.
The effect the bombing had on Brody’s family: Although not as well developed as it should have been, it was quite well shown how badly Dana Brody (Morgan Saylor) took the fact that her father is a terrorist.
Rupert Friend as Peter Quinn: Okay, it seems like I will get into some character discussion here. Rupert Friend is well cast and I have such a good time when his character is around. He, at least, knows how follow orders, listen to his superiors. I did think his development started nicely then deteriorated into nothing. YOU BETTER NOT KILL HIM, PRODUCERS.
Saul Berenson: Mandy Patinkin is a bright star in this show. He has so much heart and class, and even while I want to shake him about his attitude about Carrie, I love that he care so much and that he isn’t someone who will just kill ruthlessly.
The reprehensible characters: Yes, Carrie does repulse me more than Petyr Baelish, and Brody is the weakest person I have ever seen, but they are so damn human and flawed that it makes for compelling television.
Majid Javadi: What a villain! He is so cold and cruel and the way he dealt with his ex-wife and then calmly explained to Saul his actions gave excellent insight to the beliefs extremists have. He gave me such chills and it is the first time in Homeland that I was convinced a character was bad – he had nothing good to him.
The inclusion of Farah Sherazi: My big problem with programs like this is that the fact that there are good Muslims out there is often ignored. Farah was thus essential to the show because she is a modern Muslim woman who honors her beliefs but understands the difference between religion and extremists.
How Brody’s life deteriorated: The building up to where he was hiding out was excellently paced and his capture and detainment in Caracas was chilling. Even when he repulses me I have such pity for him, how even he eventually understood he shouldn’t be around anymore because there was nothing else he could give society as he had been broken too much already.
What I didn’t like:
The season had a sluggish start.
The Brodys were pushed to the side once Brody went on the run. I really thought the bit of Brody’s home life worked well, and it’s sad that it disappeared.
Where did Mike Faber disappear to? I loved his character and thought that he was the real thing Dana, Jessica and Chris needed.
Peter Quinn had an opening for emotional development, but it soon dissolved all into Carrie, Carrie, Carrie, and he was left untouched for plenty of episodes, just to be picked up and dropped off.
You can’t expect every season to end like Season 2 did, but this Season didn’t have a fraction of the… explosive power (not sorry) that season two ended with.