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Homeland - Lies, Amplifiers, F*cking Twitter - Review: "Tough Love"

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This week’s Homeland was good, but not as gripping as the past few episodes. It was more a silent killer type of episode as the intrigue continues to slowly develop. I feel like it’s harder to see the urgency in the situation, when nothing especially concrete is happening. At one point during the episode, Carrie states that the country was under imminent attack. For me, the statement felt like an exaggeration. They’re usually stopping bombs from blowing up, or looking for kidnappees halfway across the world. Twitter bots and fake news cycles seems so intangible, that it’s hard for me to see the urgency in any of this. What is the worst that can happen? Having the president resign? She did imprison 200 people for no reason at all, should she really be staying in power? She was the bad guy not so long ago. Anyhow, maybe I simply don’t understand the bigger picture.

Last week’s episode ended in a bang. After the bust at Dante’s apartment, Carrie thought it was in her daughter’s best interest to drop her off at school. News flash, it wasn’t. I’ve been pointing this out for the major part of the season: Frannie’s wellbeing is not Carrie’s priority. She’s not ill intentioned, she loves her daughter, and her daughter loves her, but she’s not what’s best for her daughter. Her work will always come first.

“I can’t keep inflicting that on Frannie. But I also can’t stop.” -Carrie

After many missed calls and unanswered text messages from Maggie, Carrie returns home, and it’s late. I still don’t understand how the interrogation could have been more than couple of hours, but it’s dark when Carrie finally gets to her sisters. Frannie is already down for the night. She is sleeping despite having cried all day, traumatized by the incident at Dante’s place. Poor child. It takes Maggie to make Carrie realise that she’s not going about it right, she lets her know that she can’t continue on like this, that she won’t let her, for Frannie’s sake. The scene was beautifully done, and incredibly well brought to life by the two ladies. Claire Danes and Amy Hargreaves gave out such a heartfelt performance. It’s tough love, but it’s still love. Even Carrie knows that, deep down she knows that, which is why she left.

While Frannie was in school, Carrie went out to meet Saul who had Dante in custody. She had to push her way through, we could see that Saul did not want her involved. She’s acting crazy, and Saul’s already seen her crazy. It ain’t pretty. She is running around like a vigilante, with no organization to back her up. When she thinks she is in the right, there is no stopping her. Despite the fact that she disappointed him, despite the fact that doesn’t trust her anymore, she still manages to convince him to do the interrogation on Dante. Please, please, pretty please.

“I don’t trust you. Not like I used to.” –Saul

Brining down Dante is personal to Carrie, he used her, he chose her. He’s hurt her feelings he’s bruised her ego. It’s personal. The exchange between Carrie and Dante was tense, and revealed a lot, both to each other and to Saul who learned about Carrie’s medicine regiment. While Saul was not impressed, he still followed her lead. Somewhere, somehow, he still trusts her instincts. Carrie and Saul, they're similar, they just can't stop. They need it. Her motherly instincts are are way off, but somehow, her professional instincts are usually spot on.

The back and forth between Carrie and Dante was great. It was clear to me that he was in fact the “bad guy” here, but he still tried to play Carrie, but fortunately she doesn’t fall for it. Instead, Saul and her are the ones to play him. What’s better to make a man confess than to make him think his own team is trying to kill him? Not much, and it definitely worked on Dante until his heart stopped.

Not having accepted Wellington’s resignation last week, President Keaton and him work together to find a Plan B to their Russian problem. It was to be expected that Sam Paley asked the President to resign; in order to save face before the trial. She is not going for it, though. She has nothing to feel guilty about in this situation, but it must be hard for her to not be trusted by the people she has known for over 15 years. If the people she knows believe she is capable of ordering a hit on someone, what will the public think? We all thought she was guilty at some point.

Keaton and Wellington need something to fall back if Saul doesn’t come through, so they decide to put pressure on Moscow to stop Simone from testifying. They are not letting themselves be intimidated; they are not playing into the game. Their plan did not have the desirable effect, as Simone gets broken out of the safe house and when Saul comes through with the arrest warrant, she’s already gone. Dante is now their only chance to get the bottom of the conspiracy, but it doesn’t look too good…

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