‘Homeland’ recap: Iran op offers chance for redemption
By agreeing to undertake a highly dangerous mission in Iran, disgraced congressman and former Marine Nick Brody (Damian Lewis) gets an opportunity for redemption on “One Last Time,” Episode 309 of Showtime’s “Homeland.”
Wrongly accused of the Langley bombing and the object of a global manhunt, Brody is transported by the CIA from his Caracas, Venezuela, hideout to a Virginia military base. Sadly, he’s suicidal and drug addicted.
Brody once managed to rebuild his life after Al Qaeda terrorists tortured and brainwashed him. Can he rebuild one last time?
“I’m offering you a chance to be a Marine again – the man you were before they broke you,” CIA Acting Director Saul Berenson (Mandy Patinkin) says.
“No more. I’m tired,” Brody responds weakly. “Kill me. Kill me now.”
Saul’s audacious scheme is for Brody to seek asylum in Tehran by falsely confessing to the CIA headquarters attack. Then he’d kill Iran’s bellicose intelligence chief so his deputy – Col. Majid Javadi (Shaun Toub) – rises to the top. Because Javadi covertly works for the CIA, Brody’s heroic actions could help end more than three decades of hostility between America and Iran.
“At best it’s a suicide mission,” says case officer Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes), her arm in a sling after being intentionally shot by a CIA comrade. Carrie defied orders by trying to rescue the actual bomber and thereby clear Brody’s name.
Although she mistrusts Saul – and blames him for the shooting – Carrie tries to convince Brody he should carry out the Iran operation. She accomplishes that by letting Brody glimpse his beloved daughter Dana (Morgan Saylor) from a distance.
Dana is an emotional mess since her father fled the U.S. She slit her wrists, ran off with a troubled boyfriend, dropped out of school and changed her name. Now she’s employed as a motel maid.
“I need to look her in the eye,” Brody exclaims. “I want her to know I’m innocent!”
“Do what Saul’s asking,” Carrie urges. “If not for your sake, then for Dana’s.”
Brody agrees to undertake the mission, but time is short. Sen. Andrew Lockhart (Tracy Letts) is just days away from his Senate hearing to become the next CIA director. If Lockhart wins confirmation, he’ll fire Saul and scuttle the Iran op.
The senator overplays his hand, however, by enlisting Israeli spy Alan Bernard (William Abadie) to install a listening device in Saul’s home. CIA surveillance experts Virgil (David Marciano) and Max (Maury Sterling) discover the bug and snap incriminating photos of Lockhart with the spy.
“Care to explain?” Saul asks the senator, confronting him with career-destroying evidence. But the damning photos will disappear, Saul promises, if Lockhart delays his confirmation hearing by a few weeks. The sleazy politician quickly agrees.
One problem is solved, but another soon arises when Brody threatens to call off the mission unless he’s allowed to visit his daughter immediately. Without telling Saul, Carrie drives Brody off the military base and brings him to Dana.
Their dramatic reunion doesn’t turn out as Brody hoped, however. Dana insists she never wants to see him again.
“What do you want to hear?” Dana asks tearfully. “That you were a good dad?”
When Carrie and Brody return to base, they incur Saul’s wrath for possibly jeopardizing the mission.
“Have a little faith, Saul,” Carrie retorts, emphasizing the need for mutual trust in making the elaborate assassination plan succeed.
When Brody bids goodbye to on-again, off-again girlfriend Carrie, he vows to return safely.
“I will come back from Tehran,” he says, for Dana and for Carrie.
And unbeknownst to Brody, Carrie is pregnant with his baby.
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