Homeland recap: The Beginning of The End

Carrie's hunt for Abu Nazir hits a series of dead-ends, and Jessica and Brody's marriage reaches a milestone
Ep. 11 | Aired Dec 9, 2012

BAD HAIR DAY IS NO BIG THING One thing to keep in mind watching Claire Danes run, crouch, cry, and scream in this week's episode: She's doing it while several months pregnant.

Kent Smith/SHOWTIME

Back home, Brody sat in the car, watching his family through mirrors and windows, paralyzed by the impossible distance he felt between himself and all of them. All he could manage to say to Jessica was a choked, "I can't." So she got in the car and did the talking for them. "I don't want to fight any more," she said. "Even for something. I'm tired of fighting." Brody agreed. She talked about how they'd always been "okay" since they first got together at 16, so certain at such a young age that they would be together. (It's a detail about their marriage that I'd forgotten, that they started before either of them really knew who they were.) She wanted to know if Mike was to blame, and Brody had the grace to be clear Mike had nothing to do with it. She spoke of wishing desperately that she'd been "bigger," able to take on the mission of making her husband whole again. "It was just beyond me." Brody sighed. Again, he absolved Jessica of her guilt, saying that no one could have fixed him after he got back — including himself. "I was f---ed the moment I left for Iraq," he whispered. "We all were."

Jessica began to quietly cry at the plain awful truth of Brody's words. And it was here, finally, that Brody tried to admit to his wife that the crazy things Carrie had been spouting that day at their house were, in fact, completely true. But it was too late. Their marriage over now for good, Jessica had lost the will to know who her husband is. "I don't have to know anymore," she said. "I just don't want to." She sighed. "Carrie knows, right? She knows everything about you. She accepts it." Brody knew better than to do anything other than nod. The words barely escaping her throat, Jessica pushed further: "You must love her a lot." Brody did not know how to answer, so he didn't. Instead, he asked about the kids; Jessica said they already knew it all; and she left. Brody closed his eyes and exhaled like a man who just had a burden lifted that he knew was also taking part of his soul.

In two seasons, this was the first time Jessica and Brody really took the time to understand each other, and one of the very few times Morena Baccarin could sink her teeth into playing something other than the Exasperated Jilted Wife. The promo for next week's episode makes clear the Brody family remains very much in play in the season 2 end game, but for my money, this particular storyline could not have had a better end.

For one thing, it made room for a possible new beginning. Brody left his home, and appeared on Carrie's doorstep. "What I did, to get Nazir to let you go," he told Carrie, stroking her newly clean face. "It was you or Walden, Carrie. It wasn't even close." I gotta admit, even my hard-hearted belief that Brody should die melted a bit (just a bit!) at this moment. And I don't think I'm alone; Peter Quinn, watching from his car, also seemed troubled by the task sitting before him. Can the final hour of season 2 convince him, and me, that he shouldn't put a bullet in Brody's brain?

You tell me. What did you think of the oddly titled "The Motherf---er with a Turban"? Were you relieved to see Brody's marriage end? Are you rooting for Carrie and Brody to stay together now? Do you think Saul will leave the CIA? And now that we know Galvez (probably) isn't the mole, do you think we ever will find out who it is?

Read more:
Ken Tucker's 'Homeland' review: Death versus romance? 'It wasn't even close'
Inside tonight's shocking 'Homeland' and a preview of next week's season finale -- EXCLUSIVE
'Homeland' scoop: Will Brody die? Damian Lewis teases possibility -- EXCLUSIVE

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