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Homeland: 206 “A Gettysburg Address” Review

Reviewed by Rich Jepson, cult TV enthusiast and author of 24: Terrorism Through Television.

If you thought the game had changed since last week’s episode – think again. Brody continues to spin a web of lies, half-truths, half-lies and any other deceptive methods he can think of. All of which Carrie continues to tie herself up in leading to yet more inner conflict in her already taunted and damaged consciousness. When we left the two last week it appeared the duo had finally got onto the same page – how wrong we were. Brody clearly played a part in the attack on the tailor’s in Gettysburg, he may not have wanted to see Quinn’s CIA team get annihilated but he certainly pointed Roya in the right direction.

This did bring into question something that bugged me back in the State of Independence episode when Brody was charged with the task of moving the tailor to a safe house. How come Brody was the only person who could perform this task when a couple of week’s later we find out that Nazir’s organisation has a small army on hand to take out team of CIA operatives at the same address? It just doesn’t make sense that Brody’s cover was risked so extensively when Roya could have just sent Nazir’s squad.

In terms of the attack itself, it was a brilliant twist and a huge slice of action to spice up the episode. Up until the point of contact at the tailor’s, A Gettysburg Address had dropped down a gear compared to previous instalments of the show. This was no doubt inevitable given the pace on the season so far and needed to be done in order to rebalance the tension and excitement before further twists could be unveiled, otherwise it would risk losing it’s realistic approach and high level of drama. That being said part of the action at the tailor’s felt like an excuse to inject some venom into the episode’s plot, it worked well but for me just felt a little strange how suddenly what’s been a clever game of depict has scaled up to a small, explosive war on American soil.

Mike meanwhile has been following up on Lauder’s hunch about Brody’s involvement in Tom Walker’s death. He’s now convinced Brody pulled the trigger, which obviously he did, so now he’s going to be following this up until he finds out the truth. This week he hits the impenetrable wall of Saul and Estes, which surely sent more notions to Mike that he was on to something than that he’s wasting his time. Either way the message was pretty clear – stay out of it. At some point the only way Mike is going to find out the truth is if he confronts Brody, unless he gets Jessica to do it or she gets there first. Whatever the case this is another gripping thread of the show that’s got Brody at the end of it.

What isn’t as gripping is the whole Dana/Finn hit-and-run situation. Yes, this is going to come out at some point surely and it’s going to have a huge political backlash for the Veep. Could this be a well-placed time bomb that could be triggered in a later season where, if all goes to plan, Walden becomes President and Brody his No2? In which case would Walden be forced to step down or fall just short of moving into the Oval Office? If so, the mantle would pass to Brody – and then what? Political food for thought maybe but one thing is for sure, Dana is becoming the new Kim Bauer – no sign of a cougar yet though.

8.5/10

Scene of the Episode: Battle of Gettysburg – Although this was a little too explosive to maintain the realistic approach that Homeland portrays, it was still a huge shock and a great piece of excitement to raise the action in this episode. Quinn looks to have survived this onslaught but what about Glavez? What was in that trunk? Yet more questions to mull over until next week.

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