The final piece of Saul's plan is revealed this week, and whether or not you like the twist of Carrie going into an asylum to become a double agent, or the idea of making Javati a double agent too, will factor into whether or not you buy this final twist.
Not only did Saul know where Brody's been hiding all along, but he's known all along that he wasn't the Langley bomber. In fact, he wants people to think he is the bomber so that Brody can be his third and final double agent.
This week's episode, "One Last Time," is the longest of the season and is a full 10 minutes longer than last week's. It's not surprising since there's a lot of plot to cover, but at times, it does drag a bit.
Saul's plan first involves getting Brody sober -- and the hard way. While he's going cold turkey on drugs, he starts to hallucinate, and even sees his old friend Tom Walker, before having a flashback to Abu Nazir taking care of him in Iraq.
"We both know what you've done," Saul tells him at one point. "And we both know what you are."
Saul doesn't care about the evil that Brody's done. While Carrie chooses to ignore it because she loves him, Saul sees it as an asset. It's what will help him sell the idea that Brody wants to become an agent of Iran.
First, Carrie has to convince him. She's able to do it, of course, but she has to promise to let Brody say goodbye to Dana -- uh, does he not care about his son at all? -- before leaving for his mission.
The majority of the episode is spent on other Marines getting Brody trained so that he can be inserted into Iran, pretend like he wants to help the Revolutionary Guard and actually kill the man who's in charge of it. Once he's dead, Javatai becomes in charge, meaning Saul's asset is the leader of Iran's military. It's an insane plan, but it's nothing if not bold.
The stronger parts of the episode is when Saul finally does something the audience has likely wanted to do -- call Carrie out for helping Brody escape the country and acting as if he's done nothing wrong. Saul and Carrie spend a lot of the episode yelling at each other and it's always over Brody, leading me to hope that Brody doesn't make it out of this season alive -- even if he becomes a hero to America in the process.
After all, I even assumed the mission was a suicide one. How on earth could Brody survive after killing the leader of the Revolutionary Guard? He at one point does ask his Marine handlers what the evacuation plan is and they give it to him -- but does anyone even believe it is real? I certainly don't.
Either way, he's ready in a matter of days if you can believe it. He gets his goodbye with Dana, which is awkward and awful. And while Brody chooses not to say goodbye to Carrie before getting in his helicopter, she does tell him, "See you on the other side."
If that doesn't wind up becoming a euphemism for heaven (or hell), I'll be pretty surprised come the end of the season.
Dealing with Lockhart
While Carrie and the Marines are getting Brody ready for his mission, Saul has to slow Lockhart, who wants to end the mission. He has seven days before his confirmation and it's not enough time.
Until Saul discovers that Lockhart is the one that is working with Mira's boyfriend, Alain Bernard, who bugged Saul's house in last week's episode -- something I neglected to mention in the episode recap because it so caught me off guard that I actually forgot about it.
Alain is Israeli intelligence, and rather than use that fact to torpedo Lockhart's pending confirmation hearings, all Saul asks for is to delay them a few weeks so he can finish the Brody mission.
On the ninth episode of the season, we finally have an end game for what the season has been all about -- getting a CIA asset into the highest available position in the Iran Revolutionary Guard. Perhaps if we had known about the plan all along, instead of having it pieced on breadcrumb style, it would have seemed bolder and more interesting than it's playing out on television.
The training and rehabilitation of Brody drags even though it seems inconceivable that it happens all within one episode. And while I've been tough on the season up to this point, I have to admit that even I am excited to see what happens when Brody lands in Iran.
airs Sundays at 9pm on Showtime.(Image courtesy of Showtime)