Homeland: 109 “Crossfire” Review
“Crossfire” (Season 1 | Episode 9)
The season finale is on the horizon and after finding out last week that Brody is involved with Nazir there were lots of questions to be answered heading into “Crossfire”. Thankfully, we weren’t left twisting in the wind and we got a lot of the explanations we wanted. The writers made a great decision to tell the story, or at least part of it, about Brody’s past captivity and how he formed a relationship with Nazir.
I think what I liked most about this episode was how it explored the other side of terrorism, depicting how a local school in Iraq can be destroyed beyond comprehension and then have this truth spun out by the west was challenging to see. Bringing this kind of subject matter to the forefront of a show like this is what Howard Gordon does best, he did it in 24 time and time again and now he’s doing it with Homeland. As a viewer you feel sympathy and compassion for the torment that these people have, even knowing that Nazir is a terrorist doesn’t change the fact that he’s just lost his child. It’s a strange turn of events when you feel empathy for an enemy it almost makes you support these people in their war as well as justifying what Brody does or is going to do.
Political issues affect everyone on the planet, the way it is dramatised in the post 9-11 world plays a huge part in our perception of true-life events and I dare say that this episode would have contested a few perceptions. And so it should, Brody is a great vessel for us to put ourselves in, he’s obviously the hero underneath that we want him to be but after his pain and suffering for half a decade, who can really blame him for turning? If you were to watch the Carrie/Brody one on one session back in “The Weekend” I’m sure you’ll think differently when Brody gives his answers.
Saying all this though I did feel it a tad, dare I say, convenient that Issa getting killed was the final straw in Brody’s perception of the west. It almost made me think, will the show double back against Brody and reveal that this wasn’t Nazir’s son and that it was orchestrated to get him onside?
Getting back to the show as a drama, this episode dealt with other issues than just Brody’s past. The fallout from the shooting at the mosque was a huge quagmire that the CIA nearly got dragged into but thank fully Carrie played her card right when chatting with Imam Rafen and Zahira. Now, we have further links with Walker and what his game is – destroying stationary, well that and the back of a random hunter’s head, which was fantastic, the way the blood splattered all over the interior reminded me of the classic Pulp Fiction scene with the late Marvin.
Now that we’ve finally heard from Nazir about what his plan is we can start to think ahead of Brody for a change. The political route is one that it seems he is destined to walk down and with next week’s episode entitled “Representative Brody” the writing is already on the wall.
Scene of the Episode | School’s out – this wasn’t the best scene because it had a giant explosion in it (although that was pretty cool) it was purely because of Lewis’ performance when finding Issa in the rumble, truly heartbreaking and horrific.
Reviewed by Rich Jepson, cult TV enthusiast and author of 24: Terrorism Through Television.