Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Showtime's Homeland "Game On" #304

It Worked
by Catherine Giordano

Saul, Carrie, and Brody are working again--game on
If you hung in until episode four of season three of Showtime’s Homeland you got your reward—the latest episode “Game On” is making the series work again.

Carrie is all set to be released from the looney bin when at the last minute the judge hearing her case is informed that as a matter of national security she cannot be released. Carrie's outraged lawyer vows to appeal as Carrie is led back to her room.

Later Carrie is released. Was her lawyer’s appeal successful? No it was her mysterious friend. Carrie returns home and finds her car gone and her bank accounts and credit cards frozen. She has nowhere to turn so when her mystery-man turns up she is persuaded to take a meeting. 

The mystery man works for an agency who represents the terrorist--just a respectable businessman with a terrorist for a client. They want to know How the CIA discovered the six men who were assassinated.  Carrie adamantly refuses to help them, but they convince her that the CIA has turned against her. They want her dead. Carrie can see the truth in this so she takes a fat envelope of money. But she has conditions. She will not reveal her assets in the field and she will speak only with the top guy himself.  The deal is made.

In the final scene, Carrie shows up at Saul’s home, after using “every trick in the book” to make sure she was not followed.  She falls into Saul’s arms and says “It worked, Saul. They picked me up this morning.”  This is the “dancing-John le CarrĂ©-style” moment of the week.  Remember CarrĂ©’s novel, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold. The protagonist is a former spy who has become a worthless drunk.  He’s ripe to be turned, and he is, but it turns out it was all a set up to get him inside enemy lines, so to speak.

Saul and Carrie are after the CIA bombing mastermind, Maji Javadi. Carrie is poised to get inside enemy lines, but at a painful personal cost. She has spent weeks in the psych ward and now she must endure the risks and stress of being undercover.  She’s like a frayed rope and all Saul has to offer is a cup of tea. But at least we learn that Saul, everybody’s favorite huggy-bear spy has not thrown Carrie to the wolves to save himself and that Carrie has not become a traitor. It’s been the long con ever since Carrie tried to tell all to the newspaper reporter, if not even earlier.

Back in everyday life, Brody’s wife Jessica is back with Mike again—so far he appears to be only the good friend, but I know things will heat up between them again.  Mike isn’t causing any trouble yet—that appears to be daughter, Dana’s, balliwick.

Dana has run off in her mother’s car and sprung her boyfriend, Leo, from the rehab facility. Just two crazy kids on the run. on a getting-to-know you tour. First they visit the base where Dana last saw her father as he was leaving for Afghanistan. She reports that he was happy to go. Next they go to visit the grave of Leo’s younger (by less than a year) brother, who killed himself. 

Funny thing. It may not have been a suicide. It turns out that Leo may have been in rehab because he murdered his brother. I thought Dana was going to bring trouble down on Leo like she did with her last boyfriend. But, it may be just the opposite.

Order DVD's for Season 1 and 2
One more funny thing. As Saul and Fara follow the terrorist money trail, it appears to lead to Caracas.  And who just happens to be in Caracas? Brody. So the thugs who are holding Brody may be doing it for Carrie, but not because they are her friends. He is being saved in order to be used against Carrie. 

The series is working once again. The gears are turning. A plot is in motion again.

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