It's a whole new world on Homeland. Israel bombed Iran leaving the situation in the Middle East more hectic and dangerous than ever. Carrie is no longer with the CIA, Saul is working in Beirut, and Brody is a US Congressman. Will Carrie get back into the spy game? And, is Brody a patriot or a terrorist?
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Those questions are sure to be a main focus of Homeland's second season. The premiere opens with Carrie about as far removed from the spy world as possible. She is recovering from her electric shock treatments and teaching English as a second language.
She's resentful of the way she was thrown out of the agency and especially how David Estes dismissed her. Threats against the United States are at a high and due to circumstances outside of Estes's control, he has to reach out to Carrie for help. Will she be willing to help? And, more importantly, is she mentally stable enough to complete the task?
Despite nearly blowing himself up in a bunker with the Vice President, Brody accepted an appointment to a disgraced Congressman's seat. Remember when Brody returned from captivity and longingly looked at the US Capitol? He's made it.
Throughout the premiere, Brody provides insight into his current loyalties, though at times, they seem to be ever changing. After Carrie's plea to Dana and Dana's conversation with Brody, the relationship between the father and daughter is surprisingly strong.
Dana accidentally reveals a secret, but if anything, that shows how close the two have become. If she has any lingering doubts about her father, she is hiding them well. The situation may draw them closer, but it threatens a divide in Brody's marriage.
The Homeland premiere is suspenseful and provides a transition from the dramatic season 1 finale to set up season 2. The characters continue to be multi-layered and passionate about their causes, even if at times strained.
When I first watched the episode, I didn't know it was titled "The Smile." It is perfectly titled, because the one moment that jumped out at me was in fact a single smile. Just thinking about that moment puts a grin on my face as well.
Homeland premieres Sunday, September 30th at 10 pm ET on Showtime.
(Photo courtesy of Showtime.)