Is anyone else still in complete shock that Carrie almost killed Saul on Sunday's episode of Homeland ? I mean, in the words of U.S. hit list target number 4 Haissam Haqqani, "She's practically his daughter." That had to be one of the show's most shocking moments — and that's saying a lot, because Homeland is a show comprised almost entirely of shocking moments.
But how did we get there? Good lord, how we got there is almost even worse... Basically, Carrie's operation with Aayan came to a head in the worst way possible. Factor in the shady machinations of Dennis Boyd (with a hefty assist from the even shadier ISI) and Saul's kidnapping from last week's episode, and you've got trouble right here in River City (which is a definite understatement).
Driven forward by Aayan's point-blank execution (at the hands of his own uncle, no less), Carrie orders for the drone controllers to take the shot — Saul or no. It's only a seriously concerned/disgusted Quinn (with the help of some unwilling drone controllers) that's able to turn things around. Sure, it was a moment of passion, but it still happened, and I don't see it being something Carrie's going to be able to live down anytime soon.
So what's next for Carrie? What could possibly be the next logical step for someone who ordered a warhead be dropped on her father figure and sent an innocent young man to his death? And hey, if we go back a little further in her timeline, Carrie also thought about drowning her infant daughter in the bath, and sent said infant's father to his certain death. They say this is the era of the TV antihero, and boy is Carrie quickly becoming a poster child for the trope. In many ways, this whole episode seemed almost designed to question Carrie's morality — Quinn, Fara, and (perhaps most effectively) Redmond all call her out on it, and her snap decision to go through with the hit even with Saul present was something of a character-defining moment.
I have to say, Homeland does the tightrope dance here very admirably, though — as Carrie's actions throughout the episode grew increasingly morally bankrupt, we were granted tiny glimpses (courtesy of Claire Danes' award-winning acting chops) of the terrible toll it's taking on her, no matter how hard she tries not to show it. What can we expect from next week? We're going deeper down the rabbit hole, my friends — because as Carrie says in the title sequence, "It's Alice in f***ing Wonderland."
Image: David Bloomer/Showtime