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Homeland: 305 “The Yoga Play” Review

homeland-305

Reviewed by Rich Jepson.

In what was somewhat of a tame episode, we saw Carrie deviate from her and Saul’s long game, Dana finally ended her tiresome runaway story and Saul’s duck hunting skills were put to the test.

What felt clumsy about tonight’s episode was the title segment – The Yoga Play. Why would Jess go to Carrie for help about Dana? Given the fact that despite Brody’s criminal activity he slept with Carrie behind her back. I understand that perhaps Jess feels some guilt for not listening to Carrie when it mattered most but surely she’d want to remove any part of her life with Brody and separate herself from this stage of her life.

It just felt like the series was buying time to get Carrie into a room with her Iranian contact. By tying her up with Dana for half an episode was a quick fix for both stories and in the end they didn’t even match up, so what was the point? The only highlight was that we brought Max in for a few scenes – welcome back.

Still no Brody, we’re now up to four in five episodes with our other lead character absent and I personally don’t like that ratio too much. I hope there is a huge pay off in the second half of the season that’s going to bring him back into the action because I can’t be bothered with enduring another Dana spinoff or a Carrie ‘off her meds’ plotline.

For Saul’s hunting trip he may not have shot anything but he did find a duck, a lame duck. Senator Lockhart is about to be sworn in as the CIA’s new director after spending the last few months destroying the reputation of the people he’s about to order around. Saul’s speech summed this up brilliantly and hats off to him for having the guts to say such a thing at such a place.

This is going to prove an interesting relationship in the coming weeks and one that will be frustrating for the CIA staff to deal with. My guess is that Lockhart is going to be hell bent on pursuing Brody, which is going to bring about more than one clash with Carrie. He would love nothing more than to have Brody’s capture as one of the highlights on his resume, like most political figures he no doubt has the Whitehouse in his sights as an end goal. Therefore he’s going to want to get as many quick wins under his belt as possible and he’ll want Brody’s detention to be part of his legacy.

There are a lot of question marks in this episode about where this might leave Saul, both professionally and personally. He’s not cut out for political life and mixing with the likes of Lockhart more than proved this. Will he still have a job at the CIA? I’d say so, Lockhart whether he knows it or not will not really have a clue about what’s going on at the agency and will want to keep Saul on as a day to day leader, whilst he reaps the rewards of his hard work. The only obstacle I can see is the role of Dar Adal. Should he want to make a play for a deputy director role, he could spell trouble for Saul.

Outside of this the real sting in the tail for Saul’s bad day out – Mira sitting cozy, having dinner and red wine with another guy…ouch.

Has Carrie & Saul’s plan worked? Well given the look of that chair and no doubt an upcoming polygraph, it seems their ploy is about to be put to the test. Whether it will fly or not might be a stretch too far compared to ‘The Yoga Play’.

7.5/10

Scene of the Episode: Saul’s Toast – With no real jaw dropping moments in this mid-season filler we were left with Saul’s articulate yet critical speech to his new boss.

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