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Homeland's Season 2 Finale: Into the Unknown

Homeland S02E12: "The Choice"

Unlike other shows, Homeland works best for me when I have no fucking idea what is going on. During its glory days of Season 1, the simplest of answers that should form the backbone of the series (is Brody playing for the bad guys?) were murky, leaving us all paranoid and unsure of just about everything.

The biggest problem I've had with the most recent episodes of Homeland aren't the obvious questions of plausibility (a killer hack into a Wi-fi-enabled pacemaker? Nazir taking Carrie prisoner to work Brody over? Nazir materializing out of warehouse fog like something out of Aliens?), it's the obviousness of the threat. As soon as Abu Nazir showed up stateside and was in our faces, so much of Homeland's mystery disappeared. The scariest part of The War On Terror is not knowing whether the terror is coming from some desert mountain cave in Afghanistan or if its coming from your neighbor's house. When there's an obvious target, like a Nazir or an Osama Bin Laden, the focus becomes narrow. It simplifies things down to, "He's our guy, let's hunt the pig down and kill him." When the threat is unknown, everyone, even those we think we know, can be a suspect.

Homeland moved back towards what made it so great in Season 1 with tonight's Season 2 finale "The Choice," a satisfying, jarring, and uneasy hour of television. And I'm not just saying that because the horrible opening credits weren't included. But omitting the free jazz, pagan masks, and brain-cramping symbolism of the credits signals a greater goal for the episode other than avoiding starting off on the wrong foot. To me, the new feel of the beginning and end of the episode was a sign that the show is ready to redefine itself for Season 3 and leave the past behind.

I actually really enjoyed the first half of "The Choice" as a mellow epilogue to the season and the death of Nazir, though I'm assuming most of you found it achingly boring. It may have mostly been Brody and Carrie having those new-relationship chats that we hope we never get caught in public doing (juggling, Brody? That's funny to you?), but it was a glimpse of an optimal future free of naysayers telling them to keep their hands off each other and served as the foundation of things to come in the second half of the episode. Quinn spying on the lovebirds provided ample tension, and seeing the humanity creep across his face while he ate tuna fish (or was it cat food?) straight out of the can on a stakeout was a fantastic preamble to his version of Breaking Bad's "I'm the one who knocks" speech with Estes. Saul was held captive by Estes and had to have the proper daily allowance of milk snuck in, Brody gave Mike the okay to bang his wife over some crappy beer, Carrie had to choose between a career that would make her life hell and a boyfriend that would probably make her life hell, and Dana got a confession from Brody that somehow later made her convinced that he wouldn't be capable of blowing people up. This first half was the healing process after the Nazir nightmare and a glimpse of what things could be now that things were back to normal again. It was also the beginning of a series heading into one of the most boring third seasons in TV history.

But even with all the justified talk of ridiculousness in recent episodes, Homeland has been anything but boring and we all knew Season 2 would not go quietly into the night and set up the next season of Brody and Carrie sneaking around like horny teenagers. However, I didn't think it would be that! A bomb tore through the CIA headquarters at Langley, shredding more than 200 people to bits–including Estes, Finn Walden, and Momma Walden (R.I.P. you guys!)–and kicking us all in the groin again when we least expected it. Most importantly, it dumped a whole bucket of metaphorical gasoline over the metaphorical flame of uncertainty and paranoia that makes Homeland so damn good.

Did Brody know the bomb was going off? (I say no.) And is that why he pulled Carrie out of Walden's CIA memorial? (Again, no.) Did Brody's reasoning that Nazir set this all up a long time ago make any sense, or was this more pillow talk and he was actually instrumental in the bombing? (It sounds like a stretch to me.) Did these cuts to Saul looking slightly menacing with evil music in the background point to him as a participant in the act of terror? (They were meant to plant a seed of doubt for sure, and the show has gone out of its way to try to make that a possible option, but I have to say no.) Heck, some people even think Saul's wife could be part of this. (No way.) Were the terrorists who claimed responsibility for the explosion actually responsible for the explosion, or were they just stealing credit? (I'm thinking they were responsible, and have a perfect person to set up as part of it in Brody.) Who moved Brody's car? (I dunno!) Who leaked his confession tape to the news networks? (Probably the terrorists, but if you're one of the nutjobs clinging onto the idea that Saul could be involved, then it could have been him.)

We've selfishly settled into a cycle of television watching where we demand answers to questions that series raise, but Homeland is never stronger than when we don't know the answers. Terrorists leave people cowering because the fear they propagate comes from the unknown. Just when we thought the threat had been neutralized when Nazir ate lead (okay, none of us really thought the threat was gone), "The Choice" gave us another unknown. When Homeland isn't about star-crossed lovers, it's about the destructive mentality caused by terrorism, not the terrorists themselves. I don't want Homeland to be about chasing a bad guy, I want Homeland to be about everyone clamoring for answers and so damn scared that they can't even trust their closest friends. "The Choice" accomplished that in just about every single way.

It also set up some interesting possibilities for Season 3. Saul got promoted the hard way, putting him at the head of the CIA, or what's left of it. Will he butt heads with Dar Adul and whatever sneaky shit he's up to? Brody on the run means that he might not only disappear from America, but he may also disappear from the series while Carrie tries to clear his name. But how long can Homeland go without its Emmy winning male lead? I wouldn't be surprised to see the writers pull Brody back in quickly by having him captured and maybe even put on trial while Carrie does her thing to find the real culprit. There are already a lot of theories that Damian Lewis will be used sporadically next season, but in this business, you never bench your cleanup hitter and my money's on Brody's run as a fugitive not lasting that long at all.

Overall, I dug the finale for putting Homeland back into a place where I think it's at its strongest: in uncertainty. It might not have atoned for some of the silliness that came before it, but there was an ample amount of course correcting so that we're at least back to a point of interest where the possibilities are plenty. Whether or not Season 3 brings the show back to its paranoid best or continues to move towards unbelievable 24 adventures remains to be seen. And if future episodes decide to cut out the opening credits, even better.


NOTES

Mandy Patinkin was particularly fantastic in this episode, playing his role with a ton of ambiguity. While I don't honestly think Saul is involved in any terror plot, I like the show's push towards raising the question.

– Saul tells Carrie what we're all thinking: "You're the smartest and the dumbest fucking person I've known."

– Are we supposed to believe that Nazir's plan all along was to have Walden killed in a way that would set up a CIA-only memorial so that Nazir could blow the whole thing up? And that plan involved keeping Brody in the loop so that his car could be used as a bomb-delivery service? And that Nazir's death would mean the CIA's guard would be down? Because if so, that's one complex plan that's extremely difficult to pull off considering one step in it is dying before the plan is completed. It might help explain some of the craziness of the prior two episodes, but it doesn't explain them satisfactorily.

– Saul threw in a Les Miserables reference when he called Estes "Javert." Just in time to promote the big Les Mis movie coming out in a few weeks that my wife is trying to get me to go see with her. (I'm not going.)

– What's with all the milk in this series?

– Chris Brody, after seeing his dad's confession on television, can just go to sleep that night like it's no big deal.

Comments (231)
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I was very pleased with the season 2 finale.
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Brody could be the smartest to blow em' up. im 100% sure he did
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Tim, sometimes your thoughts are the dumbest, and sometimes the smartest ...

All these speculations about Saul are BS. The storyline would be ridiculous if suddenly Saul turned evil. The music played was to enhance the darkness of the situation, not to make us suspicious of Saul.

Further, to build up season 3 they had to split Carrie and Brody, and at the same time both had to survive. Which they did. Now there will start a hunt for another hidden terrorist cell, Nazirs complicated plan would have to be unraveled (and surely we have not yet seen all of it!), and Carrie will have to lie to Saul, the new Boss, about Brody and work her own objective as to clear his name.

And btw - I really liked the old intro - a work of a genius, really creapy.
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HOW CAN I WATCH THE FINALE MY CABLE DIDN'T RECORD IT FOR SOME REASON HELP
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Saul gave the guard the razor
Saul escaped the lie detector just as when he was about to get exposed
Saul was with Nazirs Body and looked sad
Saul needed Brody outside or the story would not have played through, hence the concern

Or maybe it was Peter Quinn with the other Guy that Saul spoke to in the cafe
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I think there is a mixup. Saul never evaded any lie detector test in season 1, yet I already read it here several times. Also, I think the recent hours-long lie detector test where they tried to find all buried corpses in Saul's past would have done the trick... ;-)

Also: who moved the car? Saul couldn't have. There must be at least someone else.

I do think Saul (the CIA) released Brody's tape to flush him out and make escape difficult. Saul never believed Carrie or Brody had died in the explosion.

The one criticism I have about this episode:
Any layman would immediately have get rid of and destroyed (so they could be presumed dead for a little longer) Carrie's and Brody's phones. Yet Carrie throws out Brody's much later out of the moving car. That way it could be easily determined that Brody definitely was not killed.
Also, why didn't Saul assume, that Carrie had destroyed her phone and left a message he should have known nobody would ever hear?
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He abandonded the questioning with the lie detector, exactly when he was asked if he had gived the razor. You should rewatch if you do not recall it.
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Beppo. Concerning the message left by Saul - you know there ARE other ways to listen to them, than to actually dial from your cellular i particular? =)
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Homeland season 2 was crazy amounts of fun, but was it as clever as season one? I think not.
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Battlestar Galactica ... Breaking Bad...

and now Homeland ....

Fascinating shows...

I Have No Words To Describe This...
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You outta your mind, bro?
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Best finale? Yes. The best possible finale for Homeland? I'm not so sure :/ It was too...'loud' for Homeland standards.
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y all d hate for HOMELAND?its a damn good show, I love ittttt.
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As a European, one of the best aspects of "Homeland" is that I actually think it helps me get a better grip of the American POV - of the world and of itself. While the actual story evolving in the series IMO requires a bit TOO much suspension of disbelief, it's the first TV series I've stumbled upon that manage to explain the American mind to such an extent.
Scenes like when the other characters (Jessica in particular) find out about Body's conversion, Brody's feelings of anguish in dealing with his identity as an American, and several of Saul's best scenes, really has been eye-openers for me. The only character that I don't really find any depth to, is Estes.
While I couldn't stand the "Americanity" of 24, I very much appreciate "Homeland"'s version thereof. Quite often I don't agree with it, at times I honestly find it quite silly (sorry :/ ), but watching the series (and reading the reviews of episodes), really has helped me to get a grip of the US - in a way that reading the Washington Post, learning of US history, watching CNN, enjoying the general US entertainment business, or hanging out with American friends haven't done. And for that I am honestly quite grateful.
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I'm glad to know that cheese eating foreigners' knowledge of America comes from improbable t.v. shows.
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It could be worse. We could take Fox News serious ;)
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Hey! Estes is deep! About 6 feet deep. :p
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really? Homeland more helpful than hanging out with American friends?
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I'd say even mooooore interesting that hanging w USA friends LOL!
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well, I suppose "interesting" is relative. But I would have liked to know how Homeland could be more insightful about the US life (given it is fiction after all) than getting to know actual Americans, reading American newspapers or watching other TV shows.
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No prob :)
Even though the show somewhat raises the question of who is the real terrorist, it doesn't really question the heroics of the (true) American nature. At the most, it questions how far away from the actual American values the nation has strolled. And the very fact that the mere thought of the US-of-A being involved in anything that even closely resembles terrorism just about have the entire cast of characters, including Brody, fainting is quite telling....
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LOL sorry for the harrasment! I truly didn´t understand your point and, as a non-American, I had real interest. I think I understand it now. You know, I am not sure if Homeland really represents the American collective mind from this moment or if the show is trying to affect the set up of a new collective mind with a new view on things.

Example: do Americans realize and understand that they are also being perceived as terrorists by other countries (as the show exposes with that children's school massacre and the whole Brody revenge). Or maybe they are not, but Homeland wants to (bravely) set a basis for that way of thinking to change?

Speaking in general, of course. I think television has a great power in building public opinion. But what we cannot know is if this view of the world is sticking among Americans or not. But hey, we can only try!

Not sure if you are Swedish. I have lived in Sweden for 3 years, and I can tell you, after all that time, I am still not sure I can say that I know the Swedish mind LOL - Sorry to bug you so much! It's over now! :)
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Well - that was kinda my point - that no other show has been such a eye opener for me - of course it's not the show's characters themselves, but the way the show is told. Every work of fiction says a great deal of the environment it was created in. Reading and learning of Shakespeare says quite a lot of the Elizabethan England, American superhero comics and their evolvement during the 20th Century says quite a lot of the US collective mind, and the mass amount of Swedish criminal fiction of today says something of Sweden. And I find Homeland to be a great mirror into the US mentality at the beginning of the 21st Century.
While I guess I'm flattered by you attention, I'm not sure what you attempt to get me to say here :)

And btw - its not like I'm watching Homeland instead of traveling across the Atlantic - but I guess you can see why watching a tv show is easier to fit into one's life than arranging a oversea travel
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I know they are not all the same - and basically, those outside the US are usually a special type. But still, being around Americans is more informative than this show - the show has few characters and they are fictional. And also, you would have to admit, there are a lot of American TV shows and movies all around us, we are bombarded with information about the US. Only thing missing is, as you said, pay them a visit :)
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Simply because there is no way for anyone to tell what of the 2-3 American friends I got is "Americanity", and what is their personality. Not all Americans are the same, you know ;)
With that said, of course it would be a more efficient to actually VISIT the US... but I haven't gotten around to that yet.
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That shot of all the bodies laid out in rows, with Saul standing in the middle and starting to recite the Mourner's Kaddish, only to forget the words halfway through... wow.
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Thank you for that. I assumed Saul was praying in Hebrew but certainly didn't realize he forgot it halfway through. Maybe he's been doing other prayers lately..
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I don't think so. That's one of those prayers that every kid knows by heart by the time of their Bar Mitzvah. It's actually designed to be memorized so that when you're in mourning it becomes like a mantra so you don't have to actually think about what you're saying.
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Interesting. So Saul has been away so long from his religion, that he has actually forgotten some of its essentials?
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Either you'll go to Les MIserables or I'll never read your reviews again. I'm serious.
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All this chat about the implausibility of the show is pretty dumb if you ask me, never thought any element was that far of a reach. To compare it to 24 which was a brilliant show but way out there in terms of believability is ridiculous.

Also anyone who is theorizing that Saul is involved with the bombing has lost the plot, also to infer that the cut-backs to him at Nazir's sea burial was hinting at this is to do a disservice to a powerful scene which was nothing to do with implicating Saul. How exactly would he schedule his absence to coincide with the attack? Especially after having no control as to whether he can even leave one room for three days. This theory has absolutely no legs whatsoever.

I agree with parts of this review but too much is wasted discussing these rather redundant points. The episode was great, and the uncertainty is definitely the best part of this series, but whilst the last episodes have slowed down in comparison to season 1's (and the first half of season 2's) break-neck speed I wouldn't claim that uncertainty had ever left the show.

Personally my prediction was a hugely controversial Brody death via bombing, but I suppose that really would have been showing outrageous balls in the TV business and was never really feasible.

One point I do agree completely on is the opening credits' comments, dam that thing is awful.
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I think the scenes of Nazir's burial mixed with the VP's memorial were mixed in that way with some symbolic meaning. There are two important men (adversaries) dead, being honored in very different ways, with images of both ceremonies being shown in parallel. I found that very interesting. Plus, I believe this is the writers way to save Saul from the bomb (otherwise he would have been there too and be dead). At the end it works well, as it gives people a lot to think about! :)
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Yea I agree, I wasn't saying it wasn't powerful (quite the opposite in fact). I was saying it had no part in trying to implicate Saul as part of some conspiracy. Which to me is an absurd theory.
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yes, this was my way to say that I agree with you - I don´t think that it was meant to implicate Saul neither - but more to save him from the bomb and show us a powerful set, as you described. I didn´t think at Saul's posible betrayal at any moment during the episode, but apparently a lot of people did. So I keep an eye open in that direction just in case :)
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I was losing my shit when the bomb went off - was not expecting that at all. It really does help strengthen the past episodes, even if Tim doesn't buy it. The whole build up to Nazir's plot felt underwhelming once the plan was supposedly foiled and Nazir was killed. As a series of events leading up to this major attack, it works much better.
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Tim. Jazz is scary. Free jazz is super freaky scary. That's probably why they use it for the intro, to freak people out from the get-go. Damn you creepy jazz, damn you to hell
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personaly, it is the voices mixed with the jazz that I don´t like - every week the same voices from episode one, ugg. But the images with the free jazz it's ok, I think.
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I deeply dissapointed that another solid cable drama went off the rails indefinitely. to be honest only the first half of 1 season was good but then... And I don't want ot go into politics but the biggest issue of Homeland for me is scaring islamophobia through whole series. I was trying not to notice it but sometimes it would get harder. Look at these "Sandman", Roja, Eyleen stereotypes. It is just "24" post 9/11 hysteria bad residue. When will we get balanced show where arabs (or muslims) to have different stories and backgrounds and views? When will we have sympathetical view of arabs? (Not all arabs are Al-Queda or terrorists). Why all favors towards Israeli POV? All shows that I've seen on that matter slightly (or obviously) pro-israel. I don't care about who's wrong who's not? I blame British for arab-israel endless conflict - british put boil water on stove and left it there.
Brody character is ridiculous all around. What's his position? He's constantly floating from "true" Muslim to scared damaged man to patriot ex-soldier to cornered confused man to nobody. Carrie's islamophobia is outrageous ( i know she's CIA but c'mon - where's humanity? she's woman for god's sake!) And I hate that Homeland cowardly not want to enter into discussion of real cause and morals of war. Nazir talked a bit with Carrie about it for seconds. Homeland needed to argue its own CIA characters actions and motives towards endless War. in 2 season Homeland began to look like trashy hysterical revengful 24. sorry Homeland.
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As German I often ran into similar problems, prejudices and it was actually quite a horrible experience as exchange student in the US 85/86. There is still the stench of the Nazis on us, even though we have pretty low average of them in Germany. It is the countries around us that have increasing numbers of right wing extremists in masses, NL, DK, France etc etc ...
But in movies it is most of the time German nazis, blond blue eyed dumb and evil and it is probably equally annoying for us. The thing is I don't have to watch these movies. Even less - should I have to watch one - I'd have the need to complain about the biased points of view. After all it is fiction and people around me/us know it better than to draw their conclusions to real life from a movie or show.
As for the Pro-Israel POV, it is because there are powerful lobbies behind it and as such they can influence officials, just as any other lobby. It is no secret that the US is a great supporter for Israel. It definitely has a place in such a series imo.
I do not know if you saw Sleeper Cell. Of course if you make a show about sleeper cells, it is majorly about bad people, in this case extremist muslims. But this show also had good muslims and showed that extremists are abusing religion as instrument. I really liked this part in the series.
But yeah, this is Homeland, and it is about extremists and you shouldn't expect an objective approach, don't think it would be "interesting" enough as such a series.
There are many arab-americans people aren't aware of ... the most important probably being steve jobs, salma hayek, tony shalhoub (monk) ...
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Yes, you guys are always the villains :) I hope it is as you say, and people know better than to treat others as cliches that they see in the movies. And if they don´t, I hope the ofended ones can take a distance from it, like you do. It is the healthiest thing to do. But not always easy.
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Whilst the Nazis are one of the staples of villainy in movies I think that we British are often the villains also, or at least British actors (not the countries themselves).

I think it must be something to do with our accents fitting well with some evil mastermind stereotype, not that it bothers me in the slightest.
In fact Sean Bean's Trevelyan is still my favourite of all the Bond villains "For England James?...." "No, for me"
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LOL - I am Spanish myself, I believe we don´t make good villains except for mexican Zorro stories and other south American stories. We are more in the line of lazy fellows and really clumsy policemen haha! But next Bond's villain is a Spanish actor, Javier Bardem, maybe that counts in the race of villainy :o)
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Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I can respect... Having said that, you want a more balanced show? Watch the history channel. -This is fiction-
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bit it wasn't a deal from a get-go. I'm feeling robbed. balanced doesn't mean objective as objective can be. in first half of season one it promised solid "realistic" drama with no favors to any sides but then... sorry but it's painful to watch right now.
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I also don´t see why Carrie would be portrayed as islamophobic, didn´t see anything to support that idea.

About Brody, I think he is very confused, but he doesn´t seem to have any doubts about his muslim faith. The confusion seems to be more on personal loyalty. I believe this confusion is consistent with his past experiences in Irak.

Through the show, I don´t see islamophobia, but terroristphobia. Although I understand this is always a sensitive matter. I can still see a long way between Homeland and 24. Very long. I'm sorry that you cannot enjoy it anymore.
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I started to feel unpleasant islamophobic undertones throughout second half of 1 season. and throughout 2 season they continue to irritate me sometimes. Carrie irritates me by her overzeal to capture muslim terrorist. She's fixated to toothache. Throughout whole series I can't find her reflecting on morals of CIA actions. she was only sympathetic to arab CI woman who got stuck in Iraq after Carrie's broken promise. I don't know but she's kinda representation of CIA's endless willingness to capture and destroy threat to US people without any back thought. we don't see tortures here and any discussion on that topic, so we don't know her feelings about that. but i think she supports tortures. and derogatory Sandman nickname for Nazir is disturbing. and his actions is beyond ridiculous. I can't imagine that bin laden would do the same. but anyway I'm whining so doesn' matter
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I think I understand what you have lost from half season 1, but not sure it is entirely gone. Think that Brody represents for now that balance: he killed the VP after all, as he had planned, because he still thought he deserved it. He didn´t move a finger to help him and felt happy for his death. I wouldn't like the show that much if I saw what you are seeing, but i still see the efforts to keep that balance, even if they didn´t put any common muslim citizen in the show. I remember they had one muslim employee in 24's spy office that was treated very badly and suspected all the time just for being a muslim... and it turned out to be a terrorist at the end...! That was defenitely worse :) Well, I hope season 3 brings more balance. There has been an attack now, so we should see a reaction to it. Let's see what they do with it.
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I don't know enough about the vastly complex politics of the region, and certainly not enough to know why you blame my British compatriots (I would be fascinated to know more) but to say that the U.S.A government is pro-Israel is pretty common knowledge I thought.

In general I think you may be being slightly harsh, not sure why you think Carrie has "Islamaphobia", to me she always seemed written to be well versed in Islamic culture and perfectly respectful towards the religion.

"When will we get balanced show where arabs (or muslims) to have different stories and backgrounds and views?"
This show isn't about variable Muslim characters but rather about the tiny minority with extremist beliefs so I think its kind of expected that these are the characters we meet, and we don't really meet many of them.

As I said I don't claim to know enough about this topic to really discuss this as fully as I wish. Will be looking into Britain's involvement for sure though.
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Well, no offence but even british officials since 1948 admitted breathless British Empire's not even involvement but initiator in arab-israeli conflict. Famous Lawrence of Arabia promised arabs freedom and Palestine in exchange of their help to fight against Turkey. it was ordered from London. And european jews were promised national state in Palestine by British government (through Balfour Declaration). Brits wanted to secure support from american jews to pressure US ally to enter war. So obsv it wasn't a kind gesture. It is complex matter of course. a lot of blame game from every corner. but facts are here. British empire lost its head thinking it could resolve world's problems.
As far as Homeland goes I understand that this show is based on Israeli tv series or film so prejudices towards arabs can't be avoided. And they could make even minority characters more real. Nazir is just walking cliche with weird over-the-top plans to blow up somebody on US soil. who's gonna believe in that? sandman? Though may be half of cable channels owned by jewish bosses there still should be non-prejudice actually liberal neutral POV on situation complex as arab-israeli conflict and middle eastern terrorism. or we ll be back to 80's laughing stock political movies.
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Why would I take offence? I didn't have a hand in any of this, and if I thought the British had a history of only niceties I would be deluded to the extreme.

As you say I'm pretty sure its pretty complex and blame lies all around to some extent, but from what you say it seems a means to an end (getting USA to enter the war), which doesn't excuse it but makes it more understandable.

However "British empire lost its head thinking it could resolve world's problems." does seem a little erroneous to me, especially if you're talking about ending World War II. A definite world problem that would have needed solving by almost any means possible. Again this is not to say its a proud move but rather a means to an end.

@yamachama
Couldn't agree more about lack of teaching, I was fortunate enough to get a pretty good education but unless we are talking British industrial revolution, World War I and II, or the Tudors my history knowledge is relatively sporadic. I suppose the problem is that many periods of history require quite in-depth learning and there simply isn't enough time within classes unless you choose a specific topic to take further.
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@AssandroJourn below: (hey staff why can't we reply to each post as we used to be able to.

Believe it or not some of us do have a good understanding of WWII that is not based on movies. To this implication I do take some offence.

Whilst the full effect of U.S.A.'s involvement in the war is almost impossible to determine we can make certain deductions about how they possibly made a huge difference.

It is true that the U.S.S.R. can take a great deal of credit (or rather Germany blame for foolishly conducting Operation Barbarossa and starting the war on two fronts) for helping to win the war. And whilst they could have potentially won the war with more time anyway it was the U.S.A's involvement that allowed the Allies to create the western front and split Germany's forces.
The British were dominant in the Battle of Britain and did hold air superiority over the channel but it is unlikely that we would have been able to sustain any ground attack back into France without the U.S.A.

However this is not the only aspect worth considering.
If the U.S.S.R. had won the war largely by themselves then they would have been required to push all the way to the Atlantic. And as a result it is very likely that Stalin would have claimed vast areas of land (and countries) as he pursued his dream of a world wide socialist revolution (the U.S.S.R. did acquire a great deal of territory from the war anyway) and quite possibly changing the face of Europe irrevocably.

As such U.S.A.'s presence allowed for the Allies to liberate Western Europe without the U.S.S.R's help. So the U.S.A. should be justly as proud (as all Allied countries should be) of this as much as their defeat of the Nazis. However the time taken for them to enter (and the fact it required an attack on them to force their hand) should also be a source of regret. In fact the government and officials wanted to enter the war much earlier but the people did not want to be involved in a war half way around the world and to be fair who can blame them, after all it is war.


"there is still huge debate (moral, political and philosophical) on should one use any means necessary to pursue certain goals"

I did not say anything about a 'by any means possible' mentality but rather an 'ends sometimes justifies the means' which is vastly different. To then relate this to justifying torture is completley unrelated and is missing my point by some distance. Also note: you can have moral and political philosophy but stating "Philosophical" in the context you have implies a misunderstanding of the word.
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of course britain's merit in ending the World War II is unquestionable as Soviet Union's and the other allies' but I was talking about arab-israeli conflict. I think it was a bad idea to give two nations empty promises in pursuing your own agenda. and USA have played not that big role in ending the War despite what Saving Private Ryan and other hollywood war flicks saying to us. and there is still huge debate (moral, political and philosophical) on should one use any means necessary to pursue certain goals. like for example exercize tortures as CIA does.
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The world really fails itself by not teaching the history of things.

Short story: The British betrayed the Palestinians and promised the Jews they would recognize and support an Israeli state.

The last 100 years have seen the Palestinians remain the victims of betrayal and constant siege, by one aggressor after another. Even Wiki offers a fair account of the history of Jerusalem.

I don't support "terrorists", approve of their methods, or believe in how they twist religion for the purpose of violence, but I do sometimes wonder what I would be willing to do if treated like these people have been treated over the centuries.

Make no mistake, we had a hefty hand in the creation of these "terrorists".
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it might not be politically correct with how the cia people act towards muslims in the show, but it's probably very accurate

and they kinda did setup israel as bad guys from the start of the season with the bombing of iran and that reporter terrorists family story didnt they?
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The show has gone the 24 route.
This season has been disappointing in how simple the writing has been.

As for Islamophobia, that's just easy for Americans to handle, I guess.
To shine a light on the realities of Israel would be to shine a light on inconvenient truths about America.
You see it with shows like NCIS as well. Very pro-Israel.

I would say, though, that it's very typical of "Hollywood" to stick with the contemporary "bad guy". In the 80's and 90's, it was the Russians.

Americans need a bad guy that doesn't reflect back on themselves.
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Thank you AssandroJourn, yamachamama, aknu and CarlosR628891 for great comments and discussion that made watching this otherwise frustrating episode worthwhile.

@yamachamama, interesting points, and I agree about the simple writing. Plus it's always good to learn something knew, and Wiki is next for me because I didn't know this view / fact about the British. But i a sure there are more than a few sides to this history.....

I've often felt that we (as in the West) often don't get to see or find out enough about what drives and matters to other parts of the world. Still, I can't say that the other parts are any better in this regard because I don't know. But I like Homeland for the potential ore global / rounded view it was going for. But that all seemed to get lost in Season 2.

So this is my issue with Homeland, but from a less specific standpoint. For example, the dialogue from Carrie about Galvez 'being Musllim' (therefore a potential terrorist) was very weak writing and very poor character portrayal.

However, as a drama, the world stereotypes exist and therefore drama could use that. But the fact that Homeland set itself up as a different kind of show, pretending to be smart in season 1, giving us a rounded view, meant that it should not then be driven by these stereotypes. But in the end, it was. It was a huge let down for me.
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Yeah, all the history and politics aside, Season 2 has been a disappointment.

Carrie and Brody need to choose sides and I don't see how this show can survive if they are on the same side.

It's like the writers lost their courage half-way through and resorted to cookie-cutter script development.

Maybe it was hitting too close to home but, in my opinion, the threat of home grown and turned terrorists is much greater in reality and makes for much interesting TV.

They had the perfect setup for two seasons of Brody versus "the America that betrayed him" but they ruined it in favor of Carrie and Brody annoying love affair. By far the biggest let down of the TV season.
I wish I could roll back to the scene in the office where Carrie has the gun pointed at him. Brody says, "I do this because I AM a patriot" and knocks out Carrie. Saul finds Carrie in a pool of tears as Carrie says, "Saul, it was him all along". The season cuts out with Brody on a boat with a new terrorist cell members offering a prayer for Abu Nazir.

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Yes, I think you've summed up what made season 1 special - the potential terrorist was Brody, but with hindsight, perhaps making him Muslim took something away from why he was doing what he was doing. It was about a child for him, not the religion. I do get how the two might have the same origins (fallen out of love from your country which is majority Christian) but it led to this Galvez moment from Carrie.
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There's the truth, and then there's the other truth. To fully understand the Israel-Palestine situation involves a lot of work, since there are many aspects. An Israeli narrative of history will sound completely different to a Palestinian narrative, and yet they'll both be right. Also, most people are high on opinion and low on knowledge.
But what do we expect? Hollywood is make-believe, entertainment, not a history lesson.
I agree that the current, nearly universal mistrust of Muslims is highly unfair.
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it is somehow really hard to find real criticism of Israel in any given tv show. I don't even talk about tv news. it's unfair too. not only for arabs but for everyone. and to say that both sides are equally right or equally wrong we need to see different lights of both sides. I just don't see it anywhere to be honest. pro-israel lobby got too far, it's just become a common ground.
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I had a hard time suspending my disbelief with the whole bomb scenario. I can't believe they don't have at least one camera (let alone dozens) covering the parking lot/front of the building. THIS IS CIA HQ! I can't believe they don't have a huge amount of security checks in order to gain entrance to the CIA campus, especially given that they were letting in so many otherwise non-security-cleared people for the ceremony. I can't believe that you could pack the car with enough explosives to do that much damage without it being visible to a cursory inspection or setting off the dogs at the gate. I can't believe that any vehicle would be allowed to be parked where Brody's car was parked before it exploded without someone noticing. Which i guess leaves the idea that some government conspiracy was to blame, but I can't believe they would choose so hard a target when they could have framed him with any attack at any other softer target simply by planting some evidence and releasing the video.
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Well, you´re right about everything you say, but in my opinion this just means, in the context of the show, that all these actions had been done by some unquestionable and important person, probably from CIA (Saul?). The conspiracy theory (the govern that exists inside the govern) from X-Files maybe is back?
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Thank you for hating the opening credits. Back in the day I watched the very first episode (as I do with all pilots, I give everybody a chance.) But I stoppped watching after the first five mins (partly due to the long, boring, bad credits) and just came back months later 'cos I was told it was so great. I liked the 24-like pacing in many parts of the season finale. Patinkin just cemented his upcoming Golden Globe with this episode. I especially loved his Kaddish at the end. I am a Quinn fan - probably partly because Rupert Friend is so sexy in this smart, tormented but still lovable role. I am kinda hoping Brody goes to the Middle East next season or at least becomes a cell head. I did think that he was involved but wanted to get away from the blast with Carrie - whom he really seem to love in his weird way. I liked Finn - R.I.P. The milk thing - no series promotes milk like Homeland does. It is kinda funny. :-)
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what language was that he was talking in the end? i actually thought it was arab
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A Jewish prayer known as the Kaddish prayer. He's speaking Aramaic, not Arabic.
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So Carrie is presumed dead, and out of nowhere walks in to the CIA afterwards... no questions asked?. Nobody thinks that she's involved, nobody is suspicious that she was able to left the bombing site, dissapear for a few hours and then come back??? what's up with that?
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that's the season finale, we will have an answer to that when season 3 starts, I believe - don´t know how hard they are going to be on Carrie, but imagine when she starts saying that she believes that Brody is inocent just because she says so :) We are going to get a lot of the same crazy Carrie stuff again, most likely...
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And won't it be interesting to see her do a total 180 from Season 1! She was the only one who believed Brody was a terrorist when the whole world thought he was a hero. Now the whole world will think he's a terrorist and she's the only one who will think he's innocent.
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Very true!! And they won´t believe her neither LOL
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I just finished watching it! AMAZING! Made up for a lot of the silliness in S2!
All the paranoia & thrills of S1 & beginning of S2 were back!!! Fantastic!
I completely agree with you about Mandy Patinkin. I have always thought that he overacts... But I believe this could be his BEST TV character ever!
I sort of like the credits man! But anyway... did anybody notice what little music was used for this ep?
" Are we supposed to believe that Nazir's plan all along was to have Walden killed in a way that would set up a CIA-only memorial so that Nazir could blow the whole thing up? And that plan involved keeping Brody in the loop so that his car could be used as..." Yes, you are right, this is too convoluted... But I guess politicians, marketing people and... terrorists are supposed to be good at making the most of a situation... LOL
Anyway great end of season!
And in other news... Where is POI's review???
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Mike is the terrorist; Mike drove/repositioned the car (access to spare key). Mike has been the terror network's method of tracking Brody this entire time (lives alone, always just hanging in public spaces/garnering information and recruits from disaffected Marines)...MIKE! Oh the betrayal!!
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Lol...Probably not...but does that guy have a job??? I mean, other than drinking beer with friends, and screwing his bff's wife?
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Strong episode.
Here's what I think: Saul had nothing to do with any of this, the same for Carrie and Brody.
I think that Abu Nazhir was working with Dar Adul and the falcon Walden went to far and was too successful in his war on terrrorism as it is supposed to last a century. The first assassination of Walden was a political one, with Abu Nahzir providing the data for Issa's school for it was meant to end Walden's career(maybe Issa wasn't Abu's son at all). Didn't work, so Abu OR Dar decided to end Walden and Estes for real - first with the sniping-bombvest-plan and then with a brilliant heart-attack-funeral-bombing-plan afterwards. It's brilliant, Brody's confession can be used for any terror attack involving his death and so they had the martyr on hand. Without intel and help from inside the Agency this plan couldn't have worked, they had to relocate Brody's car on a surveyed and heavily guarded parking lot and Brody seemed really surprised and devastated by the bombing and especially after the release of his confession-clip so I guess he was briefed about the Walden-assassination but not about the follow-up. The only thing they haven't think of was a)Carrie and Brody sneaking from the funeral and b) Saul being at the sea-funeral of Abu Nahzir. The dude from the news clip mumbling is the new guy from Dar Adul's cabinet of horrors.
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I don't think any TV show right now is going to give us the clue that 'Brody could still be the terrorist because he is still a Muslim'. So seeing the prayer while Quinn looked on just told me that they won't move the story towards Brody being a terrorist.

Same applies to Saul. The focus on the Jewish prayer for the dead would just be too controversial as a means to tell us 'it might have been him'.

However, I don't find the Homeland storylines particularly clever, so anything is possible.
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Whoa, just when I was about to snooze they wake me up with a bang.
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I think the only plausible scenario on the attack is, that it had been carried out by a government agency, probably by Quinn's outfit, for yet unknown reasons. Because the other two possible scenarios are not plausible.

Scenario A: Brody is still a terrorist. Seems obvious, with Brody still being a muslim and luring Carry away just when the bomb went off. But it is impossible to plan. It would rely on Brody not getting caught stealing the code to Walden's pace maker, not getting caught while watching Walden die, not getting arrested by Carry, not getting shot by the agency, not getting caught smuggling in tons of explosives in his car. As well, why should he act normal when noone is watching, as with Nazir when Carry was running away? Why would he want to see her leave before givin up the code, if it was all planned anyway?

Scenario B: Brody is being framed by Nazir. Absolutely impossible. If Nazir had set this whole thing up, why did he hide in this secret room in the basement? If his plan was to be killed, he would have just waited for the tac teams and died in a firefight instead of Carry having a hunch on what was said in the interrogation room in arabic and it's possible translations into english. For the rest of the impossibilities, see above.

Which leaves Scenario C; The agency conspiracy. The only scenario that makes sense.
I never understood the reasons for Quinn to let Brody go. He is, after all, a killer. That's his job, killing people on orders, not asking questions. Why would he all of a sudden evolve a conscience while watching crazy-eyes Carry and ex-terrorist Brody making out? He has definitively killed some innocent people before. I guess, he was acting on orders. And what about F. Murray Abraham's tiny guest role? Why him and not some unknown actor? We will be seeing more of him next season, I'm sure of that.
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"I never understood the reasons for Quinn to let Brody go. He is, after all, a killer. That's his job, killing people on orders, not asking questions."

Whilst that is the stereotypical Hollywood movie type I think a show like this thought 'why not make him more believable and human'. And so he does ask questions, at least to himself, is Brody a threat? Do I need to kill him? and most importantly, what will this do to Carrie?
This was all pretty much explained by him to Esties and I took it as truth.

Have to agree with bicelis, all this searching for the mole is people looking for the 24 that isn't there in Homeland. It was just some other opportunist extremist.
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Oooooor, there are other terrorists besides Nazir who still work for the cause?..
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People need to put their thinking caps on and rewatch the episode.
A lot of misguided interpretations of this episode.

That said, my patience for Carrie is waning. The whole Carrie & Brody thing needs to die.
It would have been absolutely fantastic if Brody was actually behind this bombing.

Why? Because right now this show has no one to cheer for. I want to root for Carrie but I like here as a focused CIA agent and not as the crazy chick in need of a good screw. It was interesting at first but I don't want another season of it.
Brody really being the bad guy, bad in a way that no one saw coming, would have been great motivation for Carrie to get her mind together.

And yes, the bomb. Asking a lot of the audience. Just throw out what we know about kinetics, physics, and propulsion. The left side of Brody's car would have to be lined with 12 inches of steel, weight 1000 pounds, and be shored to the ground in order to achieve that type of isolated blast effect.
Never mind the fact that exterior security was non-existent and a car was allowed to sit there not 200 feet from some of the most important people in the country. Ah, we killed the bad guy so everyone take a day off? I don't think so.
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Agree! where's security in all this?
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I hate the opening credits too. It's long and drawn out. Glad I'm not the only one who thinks that.
That being said, possible parties responsible for the bombing:
- Saul. A stretch but still motive. He's got beef with Estes and he was conveniently away at Nazir's funeral when the bomb went off
- Brodie. Perhaps he's been lying the whole time and played Carrie like a chump
- Quinn. Again, a stretch but he probably did it to make sure Estes never spoke out and since he's former Black Ops, a few more bodies wouldn't weigh down on his conscience and he could lay blame elsewhere.
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Does Quinn have feelings for Carrie? His motives are very unclear.
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I suspect he does. Or at least he feels somewhat sorry for her
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*** Guys, listen up: near the end, Saul recites the kaddish, a Jewish mourning prayer. I think that makes him a Jew, not a Muslim. End of story, let's move on from that thread! ***
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I don't think the prayer is what gave people the idea Saul might not be fully on the up and up. People's motivations for killing so far in this series have at times gone outside the realm of religion.
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I know, but looking at it that way, there is really no reason to suspect Saul except the fact that he is in the show (like everyone else). And there are quite a few reasons to believe he is not involved. And being Jewish, it just makes it almost imposible. Only chance I can see is if he is actually a very well disguised spycopath.
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Well they've dropped a few breadcrumbs in the past. Maybe the show makes me paranoid **darts eyes at everyone**, but I think they were definitely trying to cast doubt on Saul in this episode - not to make him a solid suspect (jeez, who is anymore?!) but to sow the seeds a little to anchor that feeling of mistrust in the viewers. My heart was racing when he picked up the phone before I heard Carrie's voicemail on the other end -- I think that was intentional. The outlandishness of the idea makes it fun to ponder, and I think they're banking on us running a mental scan on every character we've ever met just to keep the speculation going until next fall.
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Yes, I agree with you, it is fun to study this possibility (which is why I am not amazed at so many people doing that, even if I don´t see it posible to insert that in the story at this point). Clearly this episode wanted to let us doubting everybody (except Carrie) and they did a good job.
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I didn´t know if the prayer was Jewish or Muslim, but since it was a private thing for him (that is, he was not making a show for any public), if it is Jewish then clearly he is not a suspect any more (which is good, since I didn´t think he was even when I thought he was a muslim).
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I'm not Jewish and I don't know Hebrew BUT even I knew what he was singing.
Seems a lot of people need to go back and rewatch the episode.
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Saul involved? If true, the show is going to have to do a lot of retroactive exposition to come up with motive, which would be a pretty hacky move.

Also, I'm not going to Les Mis either.
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I agree, making Saul the mole all along would be like cheating.
It's like when HIMYM shows fake flashbacks of stuff just so they could justify whatever "plot" they've come up with for that episode.
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HIMYM...why is it still on??/
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The President couldn't show up for the funeral of the vice president? What's up with that? The only winner on the show has got to be Mike. Now he can be with Brody's super hot wife!
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Mike's the terrorist!
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He did all of that just to get Jess. That's why he was so unhappy when Brody let him have her. His plan was already in motion so he was sorry he was gonna kill Brody without a reason now.
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That's the CIA held memorial, not the actual funeral or church memorial. Homeland showrunners said as much in some interview I'm to lazy to find a link to now.
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Ya just a ceremony, not the funeral. It didn't make sense to me either till I remembered that Walden used to be the Director of the CIA.
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I'm thinkin' Saul is Mossad.
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Isn't he a muslim?
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You racist! No, wait, that makes sense. I'm sorry, internet is starting to affect me.
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related to this, they are saying up above in another comment that Saul's prayer/song in this episode was Jewish. If he is Jewish, then of course he could be mossad, but I honestly don´t see how mossad would fit as an enemy of the united states and defenitely not as an ally of al qaeda.
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Yea, it wouldn't fit. But then again, this is Homeland. Everyone's a suspect :)
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LOL
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"...and Dana got a confession from Brody that somehow later made her convinced that he wouldn't be capable of blowing people up."

"Somehow"?. The reason it convinced her was that now she knows exactly how he behaves when he's about to do a sucide bombing, and he behaved very differently from that.
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Exactly! That what was she was trying to say when she said he was 'NORMAL", because she saw him being the opposite of that before.
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Excellent reply. Yes, it's all about the reaction.
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I don't think that what we saw was the *original* plan. Brody's suicide bombing was the original plan. Then they came up with a new plan, and Brody helped stop it. But this time, they had a backup plan.
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There are questions of plausibility in the show. However, " killer hack into a Wi-fi-enabled pacemaker" IS NOT one of them...this is actually possible..scary right!? If one is to be concern about plausibility is that an SUV can not carry enough explosives to do this kind of damage.. and not have explosives on the roof and pouring out of every window! Not to mention that no vehicles can be parked next to the REAL CIA building and that there are cameras filming 24/7! and security detail checking EVERYONE. Now does anyone think that the character of Peter Quinn will become "Javert" to Brody's "Jean Valjean?"
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Best twist in TV history!!! AAAH!! I know what I'll be thinking about when I go to sleep tonight. PS: Anyone else felt like the "sweet" scenes between Carrie and Brody were extremely awkward?
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The sweet scenes felt natural for me. And the natural feeling of such a situation would be a bit awkward: he's a terrorist, Nazir has been killed, Brody left his wife literally a day ago. They know they have this weird but strong attraction to one another, but to actually be out of it all and try to do normal couple stuff is quite understandably awkward.

The awkwardness is also justified by what they talked about. They were spending time in a cabin without even being sure that they will try to be together, because Carrie wasn't even sure about it.
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I agree. I thought the dynamic was so interesting. Without the constant apprehension and danger that one of them might be playing the other, their chemistry suddenly got brought down to the level of *real*. They played it beautifully -- both of them acted like the dog who caught the car.
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Very much, they had great chemistry the first season but their interactions this season have been weird.
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with what they've been through, it seemed normal to me. Immediately after the explosion she pointed a gun at Brody, seems to me there are still some trust-issues.
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Mixed thoughts on this season. The Carrie-Brody dynamic, whilst good for the majority of the season, was definitely getting old. Damian Lewis is a good actor, but frankly I think the show could survive (and maybe do better) without him, at least for a while.

The complete randomness of the explosion, although required, felt forced and improvised on the spot. And the two options we are left with are both very implausible. Brody still a terrorist? No, he's completely changed now, he wouldn't want to hurt his family even more, he killed who he wanted, Walden, he is in love with Carrie, and there are many scenes which clearly demonstrate his allegiances, like his clear concern for Carrie (and why should he fake it? No-one was there. It would make no sense), the terrorists leaking him (why would they do that if he was still on their side), the scene where Brody doesn't give the code to Nazir until he sees Carrie escape etc etc. Brody being a terrorist would be so stupid, it'd be the death of the show. But the alternative is just another bout of implausibility. The plan that Brody claims Nazir was going for simply makes absolutely no sense, and the CIA would be more alert that ever about an attack after they've killed Nazir - some sort of revenge is obvious. So unfortunately, both ways of explaining away the explosion make no sense.

Season 1 was great, but how it beat Breaking Bad is utterly beyond me. Season 2 has been far stronger at points, but has also been more inconsistent, more implausible, and more aggravating at times. I hope we see little else of the Carrie-Brody relationship next season. It is definitely past its sell-by date now. Season 3 could be great or could be terrible, it's all in the writers' hands. But I can't see it ever beating Breaking Bad.
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When I watched the episode I was so sure Saul was somehow involved in it but now I'm not so sure. I guess you're right, Tim. The show is planting seeds all over the place and I can't get my head around it! I love it. Homeland definitely trumps any other show when it comes to playing with our minds. I'm a little afraid Season 3 is going to be bad (What are they going to do with Brody? How can the show's premise be upheld? etc.). I think it would be really brave to leave Brody out of it and choose great storytelling over their top Emmy star. Then again I really like Damian Lewis.. Oh boy.
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I actually enjoyed the first half. While it was boring plot-wise, the writing, acting, and pacing of the scenes were all done very well. It would have been easy for one scene to drag on too long or some dialogue to be too pointless, but like top-tier television shows are able to do, I found myself interested and enjoyed all the "boring" stuff. That first half felt more like the first season of Homeland.

The second half: Yowzah! First, Quinn is such a badass, hehe. Second, while I expected something to happen that would make the CIA or other branch of government suspicious of Brody again, I certainly wasn't expecting that. Kaboom! The idea of framing him (which I firmly believe) and the bad guys reusing Brody's old confession tape was great.
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WTF was that???? (I'm referring to the episode NOT the review. I've only just finished watching it and I'm still in shock)
Oh Tim I wish I could be as trusting as you but I think that Saul probably was the leak. I know it's obvious but still. It would pack a helluva punch to find out that he'd been a double agent this whole time wouldn't it?
I'm not sure about Quin either. I thought it was weird that after spying on Carrie & Brodie that he would suddenly be turned around by the 'power of love' this is Homeland not Once Upon a Time!
Whilst I'm here I think it only fair that I apologise to the writers. All this time I figured they were just getting high on crack and had no idea where they were going with this show. I never thought it would have enough steam for a 3rd season, but it looks like I was wrong. God knows what they will do for season 4 though.....
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"You're the smartest and the dumbest fucking person I've ever known" - I'm gonna use this line!!! sooooo much!! :D this is the perfect way to call someone "the dumbest motherf*cker in the world" without really offend him/her! ahahahhahahahahaha
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The show pushes at hinting that Saul is a terrorist?
What episode were you watching???
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Brody "What we had was real love "
I think we will see Carrie going even crazier in between a lost love and her work.
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"– Chris Brody, after seeing his dad's confession on television, can just go to sleep that night like it's no big deal." Yes, it is like this with kids. Do you have kids?
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Haha are you kidding?? Most kids can't go to sleep without a hall light on or if they hear something outside their window up until their mid teens, how do you think the average neurotic pre-teen would react to Daddy being Satan!?
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sorry, and how many kids do u have?
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If I say ten does my opinion mean more than yours?
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I have seen a lot of quality shows, but the second half of "The Choice" was one of the absolut best episodes I have seen of any show yet (and trust me; I`have seen a lot of quality-tv. The perhaps only series that can match Homeland is Breaking Bad. And only a few of the eoisodes from the fourth season..

But what`s up with Chris Brody?? I think that he`s been recruited by Abu Nazir`s men. He is probably using his football matces to get into contact with them. They have probably told him that Brody will be proud if he works with them. I don`t like this. But at the same time, this is what makes Homeland fantastic!
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I can't tell if your 2nd paragraph is sarcasm or not??
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Why did Al Quaeda decide to put the attack on Brody's name? And why his car? Did they have more access to this car than any other car? How come?
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Well it IS the perfect frame up what with the tape he'd already made. Plus which - good revenge for the double cross.
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Exactly!When Brody noticed the car in a place he had not parked, I remembered Abu Nazir saying to Brody "did you really think it would be easy? That you could betray me and just walk away? "And then simply let him just save Carrie by killing Walden and be a free man? Of course not! This was Abu Nazir plan when Brody double-crossed him! And he obviously had a lot of allies/terrorists to finish his job for him even if he got caught/killed!
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Yep, but the purpose of the terroritst wasn't to frame brody, but to kill a lot of people and the vicepresident - they could have done it without incriminating Brody just as easily (that is, if Brody is not involved)
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Brody betrayed a top terrorrist and you expect him to just let him be? Everyone knows these badasses have a reputation to maintain and letting Brody get away with a betrayal like that would ruin his! Something had to be done! The attack in the memorial was probably planned before but framing Brody was the perfect revenge for Nazir and his crew!
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mmm Ankh49, that sounds more convincing to me! - Indeed, now Carrie would have to convince them that the focus on Brody is a mistake since there is a terrorist cell with a mole at the CIA. It makes sense this way.
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This is in response to ElisaDiaz comment below. I'm guessing that another reason for them to frame Brody is the CIA will now be looking for Brody and ONLY Brody ( seeing as how Nazir is dead) leaving the new leader/rest of the terrorist cell relatively free to plan out another attack...
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I don´t know, maybe you are right, but for me this is a strange thing. Think that, if Brody is not involved, they could have done this without him from the very beginning. Someone else puts the bomb there all that easily, they could have done the same in many other occasions. So why all the focus on Brody? Probably it is done like that so that we don´t fully trust Brody.
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What I think is interesting at this stage in the series is that to the best of our knowledge Brody has been portrayed honestly and literally. We kept expecting double-crosses, shifting allegiances and hidden motivations but so far it appears his story has been candid and comprehensive. So it's looking less and less likely that there's anything that there's any significant part of Brody's story that's been kept from us, it makes the show seem like it's telling his story as openly as Carrie's. It would be fascinating if later developments reveal that despite all this he has been hiding agenda.
This was a strong episode compared to the series of subpar ones lately. I'm still apprehensive about the quality we can expect from Season 3.
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There's still that troubling scene where Brody is asked by the CIA (after his capture by helicopter) if he had told the whole story about his time with Nazir. It then cuts to a shot of his memory of praying with Nazir, but he omits that part and says he has told them everything. Why would he leave out such an inoccuous detail like that if there weren't more that he was leaving out of the story? It would be easy enough to explain away. "Then we prayed and I left." Any incredulity could be met with, "I didn't want him to question my devotion and kill me."
Wouldn't it be delicious if Nazir told him during that time that Quinn was somehow involved? When Carrie is trying to dig into Quinn's background, he tells her "I'm reliable. I'm very reliable." And then he does something totally unreliable when refusing to obey his orders to kill Brody. Unless he's Mr. Reliable after all for the other side?
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Why do reviewers always want "season 1" back, the show evolves, it becomes something else, and maybe it is not what you expected, and maybe not what you wanted, but maybe give it a chance and see where the writers are going. You liked the last episode because it hearkens back to Season 1, but have you thought that if they did not portray the season the way they did, it would not have the same impact for this episode.

Maybe i'm wrong, but all I know is I would not want to watch the same show year after year, unless they evolved the show, and it was NOT the same as season 1, there are plenty of shows with interchangeable characters and recurring plot lines,(CSI/ANY OF THEM), if you don't want change there are shows that fit you.

I dunno, I like unbiased reviews which stem from an overview stand point and looks at the series as a whole, and not compare individual episodes to prior episodes.
As far as I am concerned this episode as well as the rest of season 1 AND 2 have been some of the best television I have watched for while, and some episodes may have been "predictable" or "slow", however they are pace setters in a 12 episode story, not a stand alone episodic story line.

Just My opinion...
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I see your point, but honestly, there's nothing wrong with comparing seasons or times in a show's history. The human brain by it's very nature selectively remembers positive experiences over negative ones in non-traumatic situations (this is the mechanism that allows women to forget the pain & have more than one child) which is why we err on the side of sentimentality with this stuff so I get it, but I also see what you mean about not letting this ruin a great season of TV with complaints about how things have changed.

It's like complaining that Tim Duncan isn't the best PF in the NBA anymore like he was in 2004, though he's still arguably top 5-10. Even if he's no longer your favorite, he's still better than 90% of the rest of the best, which I think is a fitting analogy for the whole season 1-2 thing of Homeland. Regardless of which one you prefer (I prefer season 1), either choice is just freaking amazing TV, so just sit back and enjoy while it lasts.
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I totally agree with all of this except that you like "unbiased reviews" that are "overviews". Reviews are biased. They are opinions. You may be looking for a Recap instead of a Review. But I do agree that this show is incredible, evolving intelligently, and that every episode has a purpose (which is unfortunately becoming more and more rare as series run 22 episodes and can't keep their stories tight).
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Totally agree with this. I thought the emotional build up this season was far better, even if all of the plot mechanisms were not. Without Brody's prolonged struggle, the payoff of his pleading with Carrie to believe he had nothing to do with the explosion would have been hollow.
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I never thought Saul was the one behind the bombing but I'm very curious to find out who is!
And I loved the first half of the episode, the dialog between Carrie and Brody. They can finally really be together but will they choose to be? I guess we'll find out next year
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Well they kinda CAN'T be together now. Minor issues of terrorism and aiding a terrorist are in the way.
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Thank god I'm not the only one who finds the credits horrendous.
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