“Homeland” finally brought its two main characters back together in Season 3 episode 9, “One Last Time.” But will it be their last time face-to-face? That’s yet to be seen.
Like Saul, “Homeland” is reaching big as Season 3 comes to a close. The current plan is for a newly-sober Brody to go to Iran and try to assassinate General Akbari so that Javadi can usurp him as the leader of the Iranian military. Then Saul and the CIA will seemingly have control over Iran and peace in the Middle East.
But, um, what? Even Carrie calls Saul on the insanity of this plan, and as a viewer it seems like there’s no way he can pull it off. But will he? Is “Homeland” expecting viewers to suspend disbelief this much, or is everyone supposed to be left gawking at Saul’s audacity? Then again, if he’s able to pull off a stunt like turning Javadi, who knows if he’s capable of getting Brody into the country for an assassination and then getting him back out.
Similarly unlikely was the resurrection of Brody himself. After being on the run and addicted to heroin in Caracas, Saul manages to get Brody sober and trained to be a Marine again in something like 16 days. Some of it is thanks to Carrie and some of it because Brody wants to prove to Dana he can be a good person again, but that transformation was so fast and so surprising that it gave us whiplash. Also worth noting is that Brody likely has Hep C and HIV now. Lovely.
The only scene in “One Last Time” that seemed grounded in reality was the one where Carrie took Brody to see Dana. The last we saw of the eldest Brody child, she was leaving her family and changing her name to have nothing to do with her father. When he finally stops by the motel where she’s living, she loses it. As she asks him, did he ever think about whether she wanted to see him again?
He clearly didn’t, and didn’t take her comments to heart when he tells Carrie that he’s going to Iran not only for her but for his daughter. In one of the smartest moves Carrie has made, she didn’t tell she’s in her second trimester of being pregnant with their child. Not as smart was her choice to take up smoking, but she also allowed herself to get shot while carrying this baby, so what’s a girl to do.
In other too-easy twists, it turns out that the man Mira had been seeing is actually a member of Israeli intelligence. And that he’s been giving information to Senator Lockhart. But instead of getting rid of Lockhart like he should, Saul simply turns the senator to his side and asks for more time as the head of the CIA. Because reasons.
Both Carrie and Brody have been so beaten down at this point in the show that they’re shells of their former human beings. They’re both just puppets for Saul, who doesn’t trust either of them anyway. Carrie at least is finally lashing out at Saul for second-guessing everything she’s doing, but he’s the one who should be second-guessed. With “Homeland’s” two leads so downtrodden, it’s hard to imagine either gaining their standing once again.
If Saul doesn’t pull this mission off in Iran, goodness knows what is going to be left of the pieces of this show for the characters to pick up.