Homeland Season 2 Review “A Gettysburg Address”

After weeks of posturing, surveillance, and ill-advised trips to hotel rooms, Homeland seems ready to morph from a taut character investigation into a taut action drama. What has happened as a result makes this season of Homeland eerily similar to season one. We have an emotionally unstable intelligence agent that is a little to close to a very ambiguous terrorist suspect. Sure, the roles have shifted a little, but we’re back to wondering exactly what Brody is up to. That place of uncertainty may seem familiar, but Damian Lewis’ performance is no less effective. It’s easy to believe that Brody is under the thumb of the CIA, but this place looks familiar does it not? No one can say that Brody is definitely up to something nefarious, but you should definitely be looking around to see if anyone has their hands on the rug.

While this week’s episode will leave you wondering about Brody, the show backed up for a bit to have some of our peripheral players get some run. Dana and Finn Walden saw their romance take a turn for the weird last week. The aftermath continued this week, but the entire relationship makes you wonder where we are headed with these two. For now, it would appear that we are spending time on a completely tangential relationship that does not relate to our leading characters. I imagine we are going to see how this relationship runs through our central narrative, but the exposition being invested into this relationship suggests something more than a common tryst. However, given all that’s happening with Brody and Carrie, it’s tough to invest the mental capital into what’s going on here. That being said, it’s good to see Dana get some screen time. Morgan Saylor is a competent actress. I will never understand the outcry of people who want to get rid of her completely. For crying out loud, Chris Brody is already taking around-the-clock karate practice! We have to have one Brody child around, right?

Chris’ belt color aside, it seems that Dana is quickly learning the Brody family trade secret: How to conceal something about yourself that the whole world wishes to know. Hitting Latina ladies isn’t the same as a plot to assault America, but all the familiar Brody moves are there. Her father had years to prepare. Dana only has a few days to learn how to conceal her secret.

In a show based on secrets and lies, it’s the rare truths we get to observe when characters are at their weakest that tell us who these people are. No matter how much she may protest, Carrie can’t resist running to Brody when things slip out of control. The fact that he’s a terrorist-in-waiting is immaterial. She knows the truth about herself. She’s finally found someone else who understands the true loneliness and horror that comes with fighting a war. They are kindred spirits more than either one of them would want to admit. People like Jess and Saul will never understand. Truthfully, I’m not sure I understand either. The one thing I do know: I’m absolutely riveted by it.