I have long considered Homeland to be one of the pillars of excellence in television. Taut, well-written, and cast with some of the best actors on one screen, it’s been a darling for both viewers and critics alike.
It’s a roller coaster of a show. Few are as captivating as Clair Danes’ Carrie. Plagued by mismanagement of her mental illness, we watch her flail between cool spook and frantic pariah as her bipolar episodes take hold. But, is she just paranoid, seeing conspiracy everywhere? Obviously not, since that’s been the foundation of this series. So, ironically, that seems to be part fuel for her success.
It’s been a long emotional journey since watching the 1st episode. Much of the original excellence and energy of the series came from the desperation of her pursuit and the fact that her intuition consistently overpowered her personal issues. Kudos to the show, for this realistic portrayal of mental illness, and how it confounds and influences regular life.
I’ve hung in there season after season. After the Brody arc. And, the Quinn arc. I’m still watching, but, in my view, something has been missing since Carrie left the CIA. She has always been a flawed character, so that’s not it. Perhaps, it alters her persona for me. She seems less credible, and even less capable. In this seventh season, Carrie’s downward spiral has been painful to witness as she wrestles debt, drugs and sex, justifying all in the name of patriotism— not realizing that no one has asked for her help. As if this isn’t enough, her failure to recognize that she will never be able to adequately care for Frannie is too much of a tragedy to bear. This much is fine for a movie, but in a binging world it’s too much reality for me, and not enough escape.
For the first time, I’m ready for the series to conclude. It’s still great television, and the skill at which the show mirrors the reality of current threats is consistently genius. But, if there is the plan to continue, some pruning is in order. It may already be where this season is headed, but by all means… reinstate Carrie! Have the sister adopt Frannie, and refocus on the inner workings of the Agency. Less home life, more Homeland, more Saul, more Max — That’s what I’d like to see.
#CindySays 🌟🌟🌟🌟… still quality, but too emotionally fraught, making it a tough binge.