Would black ops specialist Peter Quinn (Rupert Friend) shoot his former comrade Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) if CIA boss Saul Berenson (Mandy Patinkin) issued the command?
As viewers discover on Episode 504 (“Why is This Night Different?”) of Showtime’s espionage thriller “Homeland,” there’s no way Peter would kill Carrie. And there’s no way Saul would order a hit on his former protégé.
The culprit who wants Carrie dead – and Peter, too – seems to be Allison Carr (Miranda Otto), CIA station chief in Berlin.
Carrie wakes in a panic after she’s kidnapped and drugged by Peter, who’s working with Saul to target terrorists in Germany. Much to his dismay, Peter saw Carrie’s name on a kill list deposited in his Berlin post office box.
To protect Carrie, Peter smears blood on her face and snaps a “proof of death” photo making it appear she took a bullet in the skull.
“This picture buys you time,” Peter explains. “As long as you keep your head down, they won’t come after you.”
Then Peter helps Carrie record a video in which she bids a tearful good-bye to her daughter Franny (Luna and Lotta Pfitzer).
It’s not long before Carrie determines that Saul never would have put her name in that box.
“You are telling me that someone I trust more than I’ve ever trusted anyone is trying to kill me,” Carrie says of Saul. “And I’m just supposed to accept that, no questions asked? Spend my life on the run? Give up my daughter?”
To learn more, Carrie dons a brunette wig and accompanies Peter to the post office. That’s when a would-be assassin opens fire. Although Peter suffers a painful wound, he guns down his assailant and Carrie retrieves a cellphone from the corpse.
Noticing there’s just one number in the phone’s memory, Carrie places a call to see who answers. It’s Allison, who apparently hired the hitman.
But that’s not all. Allison may have sabotaged a CIA plot to bring about regime change in war-torn Syria. The strategy involved replacing embattled President Bashar Assad with General Youssef (Igal Naor), a respected leader in the Syrian military.
Saul and Allison approach Youssef in Switzerland while his daughter undergoes a delicate operation. To assist Youssef in launching a coup and instituting democratic reforms, Saul provides $10 million in cash.
“We will do what it takes to unite the country around your government,” Saul promises. “But we must act quickly before your enemies gain more strength.”
Youssef ponders this bold proposition as he boards a private jet for his return flight to Syria. But shortly after takeoff, the plane explodes. Another traitorous act by Allison?
Finally, dissident American journalist Laura Sutton (Sarah Sokolovic) tries to obtain additional stolen documents regarding an illegal partnership between the CIA and Germany’s BND intelligence service.
Prevented by privacy laws from spying on their own people, BND officials allowed the CIA to track suspected terrorists in Germany. When Laura exposed this in the media, both agencies quickly disavowed the arrangement.
Laura thought she had the inflammatory documents on a flash drive given to her by Numan (Atheer Adel), an expert computer hacker. But Numan’s greedy friend Korzenik (Sven Schelker) erased the drive so he could sell the top secret information to Russia.
“You idiot,” Numan yells on a phone call to Korzenik as he’s being driven to meet with Russian agent Ivan Krupin (Mark Ivanir). “Get out of the car!”
Tragically for Korzenik, he’s tortured and then strangled by Ivan’s henchman. So the Russians get a treasure-trove of CIA data. And Korzenik gets a wire noose around his neck.