"Homeland" -- "Q & A": True Lies
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"Homeland" — "Q & A": True Lies

By Cindy Davis | TV Reviews | October 29, 2012 | Comments ()


After a whirlwind of episodes that took away our collective breath, "Q & A" was powerfully quiet. Not to say there were no heart-pounding moments, rather, the exhilaration came through the skillful way Carrie Mathison cornered her mouse.

Following Carrie's confrontation and the subsequent rendition-like Brody takedown, the key players end up in the handy-dandy CIA makeshift prison/interrogation room, complete with table cuffs. Surprisingly, or perhaps more because they know they need her, Estes, Saul and Quinn don't stay angry at Carrie more than a few moments. Everyone begrudgingly allows the slim possibility of Carrie's assertion that Brody made her--I'm not sure whether she really believes it herself, or it's just an excuse for her losing control. We understand Quinn's reluctance to let Carrie conduct Brody's interview; is he the only one that doesn't know the Senator will never confess to him, or is he just setting up sympathiser Carrie all along? Thrown into a hotbed of magnificent actors, Rupert Friend has quickly made his own place. Quinn leads Brody through a parade of lies before hitting "Play" on the recovered suicide video, then walks out, leaving Brody to stew. Damian Lewis again does the face morph, as Brody's emotions transform him from nervous to angry, then defiant to deflated.

Did anyone see Quinn's next move coming--when Brody takes the position that he made the suicide video but never actually wore a vest bomb (pretty smart)? Perhaps because we've been preconditioned, when the agent feigns losing control and stabs Brody, I was completely taken aback. But I don't feel too badly, since it seemed to take a moment for Saul to catch on; "So that was all theater." Quinn: "Every good cop needs a bad cop." And finally, we get what we came for. Whether or not Carrie completely lost it when she confessed her knowledge and feelings to Brody, now she plays him like a well-loved instrument. She gently removes his cuffs, caresses him and softly...expertly plucks his every string until he cannot help himself. Brody responds just as he was conditioned to by Nazir. Lewis' face crumbles and as Carrie speaks to Brody, he transforms back to that bearded, dazed POW we saw at "Homeland's" outset. Watching Brody fall apart, Carrie baring her soul, their eyes both filling with tears and then Brody dropping to the floor in the fetal position (just as we've seen Carrie do), it's impossible not to see the bond between these two broken souls.

In between the interrogation scenes, we're treated to sporadic scenes of a mostly clueless, suddenly dejected Jessica running around trying to find the husband she just kicked out. It's a little strange that right after they've separated, her anger has so quickly dissipated and she goes on a mission to find him--it seems conveniently written just so someone will be suspicious over Brody's disappearance. (Better her than Roya, I suppose.) But even more disappointing is the direction writers are taking Dana. There's nothing wrong with a little teenage crushing on the Vice President's son, but this business with the hit and run has veered too far into Kim Bauer territory. The only justification would be if Dana eventually needs to play a little blackmail game with Finn to help her dad.

As expected, Brody has no choice but to work for the CIA. It's a useful truth for Brody to offer when he returns home to Jessica--who stretches credulity by taking back her husband so quickly. But as we've observed, "Homeland" is a show that needs to rubber band the truth a bit so that when we get off the coaster, we want to run right back to get in line and ride again.

Cindy Davis is currently in line for a stormy ride she hopes is not too bumpy.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • lowercase_ryan

    I don't like that I only watch this show on Monday nights (DVR), then you people come and discuss it and I'm all late to the party. But w/e, this was my favorite ep of the season. Watching Lewis and Danes torch everything around them in that interrogation scene was the highlight of my month.

  • RilesSD

    I thought the same about Jessica's feelings, but if you think about it, she didn't outright kick him out...she gave him a choice to tell the truth or not and he left. A little stunned, she now wants him back.

    Great episode.

  • Mel C.

    Do we really think Carrie is in love with him? I can't tell if it's her loneliness talking or what. I just don't buy that special connection. Mostly because Brody does absolutely nothing for me. He may deserve an Emmy for his performance in this last episode, but I didn't find Lewis to be anything special up until that interrogation scene.

    He better not become some big vital, heroic part of the task force because I haven't forgotten that he's a murderer.

  • Wicked

    Didn't he only murder the Tailor of the suicide vest and Tom Walker? Both Terorrists?

  • Mel C.

    Yes, but I dunno. I still feel like he killed both of them for purely self-serving reasons. Not because they were terrorists.

  • Sirilicious

    I think Jessica's search for Brody was not just a story tool. When you love someone but they fuck up, you need to be harsh to show that it is not ok. But as soon as you do, you need to know that you weren't too harsh, didn't destroy something beyond repair. And if you can't reach that person to at least assess the damage you did, you get a little panicky.

    Or so my friend told me...

  • layla

    I'm trying really, really, really hard to keep my love strong for this show... but I am having a tough time getting through the Jessica, the Brody at home, the kids, the congressman and the VP centred political story lines. I just don't care about any of them (people or storylines) and the show isn't doing anything to change my mind.

    Jessica is like nails on a chalk board and if she ran off with Mike (btw? is he still around?) I would actually rejoice. The kids, whatever, but "Oh hi Chris, nice to see you back", albeit 5yrs older (is that a different actor? or just puberty?). As for the Vice President, I care so little I'm not sure I could pick him out of a crowd, let a lone rally the feelings to feel anything when Carrie refers to him as a monster.

    The upside of these storylines?... It gives me time to refill my wine, go pee and do my nails. Essentially they have become commercial breaks and I'm just not into whatever it is they are selling.

    Meanwhile, over in CIA land the show continues to shine.
    All of them. Truly awesome and there is not one character that is wasted or useless... is it wrong that I want all CIA all the time?

  • John W

    Man this is one show I truly do not know what's going to happen next.

    Is it too early to nominate Danes for another Emmy?

  • lowercase_ryan

    No, and screw whoever downvoted you.

  • Blake

    Thanks Cindy. Was I surprised by Quinn stabbing Brody? No, but I thought it should have had the reverse effect on Brody making him more defiant (how did he ever get elected to congress with his lousy poker skills?) I am also disappointed in Dana's story line but as the writers for Homeland seem to do the exact opposite of what other shows would I don't see a blackmail scenario in the future (maybe a way for Brody to resign and take down the VP as well?).

    Either way Carrie gets exactly what she wants, an excuse to spend more time with Brody and perhaps, in the long run, fulfillment of her desire to see him leave his family and be with her.

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