“Homeland” spent the first half of season three focused on Carrie’s stay in a mental institution, and Dana’s infatuation with her Tilda Swinton looking boyfriend. Fans of the show couldn’t be blamed for wondering where the white knuckle terror fighting show we used to love went. The show felt like a bad CW drama instead of the kick ass espionage show we fell in love with. In the last few episodes though the show has returned to familiar roots with Saul recruiting Brody for a mission to kill the head of Iranian Intelligence. Viewers might have held their breaths over the possibility of drama at Dana’s motel job, but thankfully “Homeland” seems focused on the Iranian plot.
The episode kicked off with an important conversation between Carrie and Quinn. Turns out that when Carrie was shot, Quinn checked her medical chart. He knows that she is pregnant with Brody’s kid, and he’s worried that her judgement is suspect due to that. Carrie not only ignores his advice, but goes as far as denying the baby is Brody’s. That story might work on the Maury show, but we all know she’s just lying to stay on the team.
The mission to get Brody across the Iranian border kicks off with all the players in place. Brody is with the special ops guys we met last week waiting for the call to cross the border. Carrie, Saul, and Quinn are at the CIA safe house monitoring the mission, while Dar and the President’s Chief of Staff watch the action from the West Wing. There’s also a drone armed with hellfire missiles watching all the action.
The mission hits its first snag when a group of Iraqi police stop Brody’s group. The mission is obviously too important to let the police get involved, and the men kill the three police as quietly as possible. With Saul rolling the dice on this mission there was little that he wouldn’t do to get Brody across the border. Saul even reverted to chewing his lucky gum because of the mission’s importance. The dead police mean a change to the plan, and the team drives Brody to a different location near the Iranian border.
With the new plan being dangerous, only Brody and the head of the special ops team head off alone in a SUV. The trip ends suddenly when a mine explodes under the car, ripping the vehicle in half. Brody drags the ops team leader out of the truck. He’s lost a leg, and the rest of the team hurries to help. All of this noise draws the attention of the Iraqi army patrolling their side of the border, and the team ends up pinned down by gunfire in an abandoned house.
Everything is falling apart for Saul, and he admits as much when he hands over control of the mission to the military general in attendance. As Saul points out this is no longer an intelligence mission. Now the goal is to just get the men out of harms way. When Brody gets wind that the mission is being aborted he rebels. Carrie tries to talk him out of making a run for the border, but he doesn’t listen. Saul and Carrie worked so hard to make Brody believe this mission’s success could be his salvation, so they shouldn’t be shocked he wasn’t too keen on giving up.
Brody makes a run for it, and the special ops team begins a coordinated retreat under the cover of the drone’s hellfire missiles. Now is the time to point out what a crappy job “Iraqi Border Policeman” is. I hope they get a better union representative in their next negotiations. The ops team makes it to their vehicles, but the second in command refuses to leave Brody behind and runs back alone for him.
He reaches Brody, but they aren’t alone for long. A mass of Iranian troops surprise them, and take both of them into custody. Both men are then held alone in a cell, and the topic quickly turns to torture. Brody lets the guy know that it isn’t a question of if, when it comes to breaking under torture, but when. Brody himself lasted seven days, and from the reaction of the special ops guy he might not last that long. Eventually the cell door opens and Javadi walks into the cell.
Javadi, the flipped Iranian asset, gets alone with both of the men in the room, and asks Brody if he is ready to go with him to Tehran. Brody says that he is, but asks what will happen to the ops guy who is with him. Javadi answers that by pulling a gun, and shooting the ops solider in the head. Brody screams “why did you do that”, but even he had to know that was the only move Javadi had. Javadi is playing his role of evil intelligence chief, and can’t start handing out special treatment to possible spies.
With only two episode left “Homeland” is now perfectly positioned to play out the entire Brody mission. The real question becomes does Brody have a chance of survival? Carrie promised him that she would get him out of there eventually, but that seems a tough ask. If the mission does succeed, will that secure Saul’s position at the CIA? Could Carrie reveal her pregnancy while the mission is going on? All this and more will be answered in the final two episodes of “Homeland”.