The Death of Homeland

Posted: December 4, 2012 in TV

This is where I need someone like Viggo to go all forensic on us and tell us that of course episodes 6 and 8 were crap – they were written by Dana and directed by a poodle. Homeland is a victim of its own success and by extension we suffer for it. It was a great concept but doubt if when initially pitched the writers saw a multi-season arc there? It should have been a UK type show like State of Play – perfect. Season 1 was great but there were some concerns how it ended ala Lost – ok you are on the hook now lets drag it out. The start of Season 2 gave us hope though that they had a plan. They do apparently – lets get rich and make 12 more seasons. 24 could do some illogical nonsense at times because Jack was a good guy and in the end we wanted him to win. Some of us want Brody to win or at least did up to about Ep 5 of this season and that doesn’t sit all that well. Now I just want Brody and Carrie to take a long walk on a very short pier. What may have been great acting initially has just become annoying characters for me. The only interest left in this season , and show , for me is just how much more ridiculous and illogical it can become by end of season and just how they expect to keep anyone interested beyond that.

Boardwalk Empire showed us how to do it – don’t shoot your load early. Make a classy show with some great scenes every now and again and some interesting characters and then build. If it is quite in Atlantic City move to Chicago. Yada Yada Yada. We see Capone starting to come to the fore now etc. Season 3 was superb and now cant wait for Season 4. Homeland has all the dizzy expectation of a root canal appointment now – you know you have to do it but you know there will be a lot of pain. Of course one thing the 2 shows do share are annoying lead female characters. I say Chalky does Nucky one last favour and takes out Mrs T next season

Even Dexter has been able to reinvent itself this season after a couple of years in the wilderness. We can forgive the ridiculous ease that Dexter moves around Miami – on land and sea – like an invisible Batman because we basically like the guy and want these scum to die a nasty death. Then we have some interesting characters thrown into the mix – Deb should have Emmy tattooed on her ass now. Ok “Fucking Emmy” to be exact J Even when they flew in big names like Lithgow it was still the central 2 characters that engaged us. Brody and Carrie no longer do that for this little black duck in Homeland

Saul has always been the great hope for this show but is so closely aligned with Carrion that he is being dragged down to her level. (Carrion from the Latin “caro”, meaning “meat” refers to the dead and decaying flesh of an animal) . The best way to end this show now would be for the President to knock on the Brodys’ door and ask Jessica “I need to speak to Nick”. She responds “Sorry, no one of that name lives here. Only me and my husband Brody”.

Pretty well sums it up.

  1. Why so mean Flashy? If Claire Danes were to read this it would surely make her cry, if and she wasn’t already.

    As for going forensic, not sure why you would single out episodes six and eight but the latest, Broken Hearts was written by Henry Bromell of Q&A and Rubicon (The anti-twenty four) fame. There is an interview with him floating around that addresses the episode and he is surprisingly candid about his intentions and the fact that he wrote this as a thriller with above-average depth of character rather than a character drama with some suspenseful moments (which is what most of us want from the show).

    On the other hand though it was directed by Guy Ferland, a veteran of Walking Dead and SoA, two shows not exactly known for their subtlety and thus the tailspin shown here makes some sense. When you’re used to two Shield vets like Sutter and Mazzara shouting at you to make the scene shocking you’re eventually going to take them literally and put out something shocking in the other sense, like this.

    When the season first began we praised it for the accelerated pacing, for pushing forward through the sub-plots that usually slog shows down and heading straight to the core of things but it turns out that there is a reason for the padded and plodding nature of most other shows: it’s hard to keep control when you’re traveling at that speed. The real issue though is that the characters haven’t kept up momentum, they’re still glacial in their travels – ‘subtle’ as they are – and so in comparison to the shifting narrative context they just seem staid, stale and stilted. The person behind the wheel needs to keep pace.

    That said, the show still does some things right. As much as it has dropped off from the heights that it once held (both in reality and in people’s minds) it is still a decent enough silly-thriller and as static as they are the characters still stand above the majority of what currently airs (we Aussies are lucky enough to pick only the perfectly ripe fruits, so our perspectives on ‘bad’ can be skewed sometimes) and so I don’t know that I agree with you when you say that the show is beyond saving. Beyond ‘Best Drama’? Yes. But is it impossible that we will all be watching it again this time next year? No, not at all and hell, come season five maybe Howard Gordon will walk away with a third BD Emmy ala Twenty Four, a show that got better after it got stupid.

  2. flashman181 says:

    I don’t see it can recover without some major deaths and not sure they have the balls for that. However happy to be proved wrong. Surely though you have to admit some of the scenes like digging around in VP office are beyond acceptable so why should we have to put up with hat crap when we know they can do better .

    So I just have to mention your name in future posts to summon you from the dead?

    • I’ve always followed your blog, I just happen to know a little more about Homeland then I do Maryhole or Medieval Europe so I could actually comment on this post.

      The episode was obviously horrible, I was suspicious when I saw the crashed car after last season did the same thing to dodgy results but then when Carrie woke up in the factory I knew things were over; Dana didn’t even need to show up and pout to prove it, yet she did anyway. What i’m saying though is that the season has had five good hours and five iffy ones thus far: it’s not a good ratio but it is one that suggests some scenes over the coming two weeks should be decent.

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