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Homeland “From A to B and Back Again” Review (4×06)

2 Nov

Homeland - Episode 4.06 - From A to B and Back Again - Synopsis + Promotional Photos

“Take the shot.”

Before Aayan Ibrahim is gunned down in this episode, the story seems to be going in the direction we expect it to go: Aayan will find some way to stay alive, Carrie will continue to juggle her feelings for him a la Brody, and Haqqani will elude the Americans until somewhere around episode twelve. However, that’s not the case, and Aayan’s death is the jumpstart this season needs moving forward.

Taken as a whole, this is a very well-structured, tense episode that digs back into the spy roots of the show. More importantly, it’s also able to probe the psychological depths of Carrie Mathison without going overboard, converging various relationships until they all come to a head in that fantastic final sequence. The episode takes and gives, pushes and pulls, shows us Carrie and Aayan exchanging “I love you’s” and later shows us Aayan with a bullet in his head. It becomes a question of sacrifice, of innocence, of who or what we will use to fight terror, and it’s great.

The interesting thing about Carrie’s moral dilemma is that it literally plays out before our very eyes during the last few minutes. She’s all about her job and righting the wrongs she did in the premiere, and she can do so by catching Haqqani. However, she also clearly has an emotional connection to Aayan, and to make matters worse, Saul’s also standing right next to those two. It’s an all around nerve-racking ordeal for her, and when the bullet hits Aayan’s head, she’s left in the cold, sitting on the table in her office as her plan continues to go up in flames.

Of course, the big element to note here is that Carrie almost takes out Saul at the end, and if not for Quinn, he would be dead (I would burn everything down if that ever happens). When we look at this moment with previous scenes in mind, it becomes clear that the tensions between her and Fara and her and Quinn have slowly been building up throughout the season. They’ve constantly been at odds with her, simultaneously criticizing her seemingly callous nature and her overly emotional one, and at the end, she has something to prove to both Fara and Quinn and to herself. She wants to believe that everything she has done is justified, that her plan to take out Haqqani will all work out, and she’s willing to sacrifice her closest friend to prove that point. Haqqani shoots his own nephew, after all, so why can’t she kill her friend?

Carrie Mathison has traveled from A to B and Back Again, but it’s a completely different game now.

GRADE: A-

OTHER THOUGHTS:

– “Can you manage a Hefty bag for your country?” Great scene for Boniadi and Danes here.

-I need a screen cap of Redmond’s face after hearing the Aayan-Carrie phone call.

-If you sleep with Carrie Mathison, know that you will most likely die.

-The Dennis Boyd stuff still isn’t very compelling to me, but it’s slowly getting there. He seems to be a man who’s also out to prove something to both himself and those around him. Also, the question of Carrie’s stability regarding her pills is sure to become an increasingly major plot point.

-Kudos to Suraj Sharma for his work throughout the season. My favorite acting moment of his is at the end, where we can see the hurt written on his face as he figures out that Carrie played him, that there’s a drone in the sky waiting to take Haqqani out. Then, he’s dead. RIP.

-This is post #500 on my blog! Let’s celebrate.

Photo credit: Homeland, Showtime

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6 Responses to “Homeland “From A to B and Back Again” Review (4×06)”

  1. Anonymous November 2, 2014 at 11:33 pm #

    Firstly, congratulations on your 500th post!

    Excellent recap of one of my favorite shows on cable.

  2. Anonymous November 2, 2014 at 11:35 pm #

    Firstly, congratulations on your 500th post!

    Excellent recap of one of my favorite shows on cable.

    • polarbears16 November 3, 2014 at 12:54 am #

      Thank you! Always nice to see you around.

  3. #peggyatthemovies November 3, 2014 at 1:13 am #

    WHOOO HOOOO!!! #500 = awesome!!

  4. sarah9461 November 5, 2014 at 6:56 am #

    My husband’s favorite character is Dennis Boyd. Ok, he plagiarized something and lost a university job in the past, so the IS is using that to control him? Or, do you think he gets some kind of perverse pleasure from going behind his wife’s back and destroying her agents?

  5. R.D. Writer November 6, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    I know it had to happen, but it doesn’t seem like the same show without brody

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