VOD TV review: Homeland Season 3, Episode 2 (Uh… Oh… Ah…)
Carrie Cry Face8
We need to talk about Saul4
Ivan Radford | On 17, Oct 2013
Photo: (C) 2011 FX Networks LLC. All Rights Reserved
Uh. Oh. Ah. Not just the title of Episode 2 of Homeland Season 3, but the noise you’ll make while watching it. After an intriguing start to the new run, which gave us some breathing space to recover from Season 2’s explosive finale, this episode goes from sitting around into full-on moping territory. Yes, you guessed it: Dana.
Morgan Saylor does a good job as Brody’s daughter, confused, depressed, angry – all the things a teenager should be, amplified by the fact that her daddy turned out to be a terrorist. But with at least half of the runtime given to her and her new boyfriend, you wonder at what point she stops becoming a mildly annoying, fleshed-out supporting character and starts becoming a very irritating lead. This is Homeland, after all, not Hollyoaks.
Back in Carrie land, things are equally unbalanced in the wake of Saul’s public burn. Hysterical, she retaliates by trying to talk to a news reporter about Brody’s innocence – a move that the CIA don’t like very much. But before Saul can step in and offer her some more tiramisu, Dar Adal (F. Murray Abraham – don’t trust him, he killed Mozart) has her committed for 24 hours. Halfway through her stint, Quinn (Rupert Friend) warns her that she’s danger. Is he on her side? Is he issuing a threat from Saul? A quick Carrie Smash session later and we find out.
So far, so, um, predictable. But just as you’re about to write this off as another familiar chapter in the franchise, one that merely keep things ticking over, a big surprise happens. Saul hires Fara (Nazanin Boniadi) to investigate a bank they think is connected to the Langley bombing – but not before telling her off for wearing a headscarf to work.
Oh. That’s not very Saul like, is it? Anti-Muslim clothing regulations? Is this really the same man who tried to cure all ills seven days ago with a coffee-flavoured Italian dessert?
It’s a strange moment that marks a subtle shift in the TV show’s standings: up until now, Saul has been the good guy, fighting Carrie’s corner against the CIA. Now, he’s in charge and she needs to be controlled. The guy who’s now her ally? That seems to be former shady operative Quinn.
Of course, Chip Johannessen’s script may simply be moving pieces around for a dramatic shake-up this season. This could well be the arc that sees Saul suffer a tragic fall from his moral high ground. Whether that’s the case or not, one thing’s for certain: spending more time with Dana isn’t going to help.
Things are just about rescued with a closing line from both Dana and Carrie that remind you how good they each are. But it’s going to take a lot more than that to keep our interests up for another 10 episodes.
Come back Brody. All is forgiven. Except for, you know, the terrorism and stuff.
Homeland Season 3 is available watch on Netflix UK as part of a £7.49 monthly subscription.