After what will probably go down as the best episode of the season last week, Homeland returns with a much less exciting but structurally sound penultimate episode. What it mainly does is set up next week’s finale, in which we’ll either see Carrie pull off some miracle extraction plan or Brody will be killed. Along the way, though, Brody (or, really, Damian Lewis) gets some great scenes in which he gets to mess around with the audience. Maybe I’m not a careful enough viewer, but how Brody gets from point A to point Z in “Big Man in Tehran” wasn’t telegraphed for me. For a minute there, it seemed like the way the writers were going to sideline Brody for the future would be to have him stationed in Iran until he became relevant again, popping up in the occasional I-hate-America YouTube video. Then, it seemed like they weren’t going to wait until next week to axe him, which I would have been fine with even if that kind of stuff is best reserved for the biggest of episodes. Carrie, though, wasn’t having it. Like last week, she and Brody don’t get much time together in “Big Man in Tehran,” and that time isn’t exactly in-person, but – also like last week – we see that any interaction between Carrie and Brody is somehow compelling because of the almost mythic status they’ve acquired within this series. Carrie keeps being a “bad” agent by playing off the book (she ought to have been fired without the chance of reinstatement a long time ago), and those misguided actions continue to create or extend plots for Homeland. It can be really annoying when there are certain things you know you want out of this series and the writing is paying a lot more attention to things that are far less relevant, but the ridiculousness of Carrie’s antipathy towards conventional CIA protocol is at least fun to see play out.
CLICK HERE TO EXPAND THE ARTICLE