Homeland was one of those series that I always meant to watch, but never got around to. Well, because of the pandemic and a lot of free time on my hands, I ended up watching the series. As someone that loves spy-type thrillers, I was sure that Homeland would be a show that I enjoyed. I think it is a show that starts out amazing but runs just a tad too long for its own good.
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The Movie Review
The main character in Homeland is Carrie Mathison. Carrie works for the CIA as part of the counter-terrorism division. Carrie is played by Claire Danes (check her out also in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines as Kate Brewster), s who I am a big fan of and I think she does some of her best work here. Her character has some “issues” that make her very compelling. You really do like her, but at the same time, you do wonder just how much you can trust her judgment.
The other main character in the first (and a couple of seasons after) is a US Marine called, Nicholas Brady.
Brady was captured while on duty and he was held as a prisoner of war for around eight years before being rescued. He comes home to a hero’s welcome, but there is someone who is not so sure of him and that is Carrie!
Brady is played by Damian Lewis and he is just awesome in this role. Actually, I think the whole thing with him and Carrie is just done so well. Anyway, Carrie has suspicions that Brady has been turned while he was held captive and that he is planning an attack on the US. This is such a great premise and the show really did have me hooked right from that first episode.
The way it keeps you guessing is just so very well done. One moment you are sure that Carrie is right and Brady is bad, but then you think maybe she is just nuts and it is all in her head. The acting is great (although some have said it borders on overacting) as it gets you so invested in the characters.
Now, that is the synopsis for season one and this storyline does roll into the next couple of seasons. However, by about midway through season 4, Homeland for me started to lose steam. I found Carrie to be far less of an interesting character and it was like she went one from thing to the next, always with what seemed like the best intentions, but I just stopped caring.
I think that the first three and a half seasons are truly captivating and compelling stuff. Yet, I feel if I had watched this when it first aired, I probably would have quit during season 4 as week-to-week, I am not sure it would have kept my interest, to be honest with you. I really do think that this is one of those shows that is much better if you binge-watch it.
Coming in at 96 episodes where each one is around an hour long, Homeland is the kind of show that is a pretty big commitment. While I enjoyed the first half of the show, not enough that I could see myself ever watching all eight seasons again. Still, if you like the sound of the premise, give it a watch, just go into it as blind as possible as that first season (and the 2 and 3) offers some great twists and turns.
- Carrie is a great protagonist and pretty badass too!
- I liked the tortured anti-hero of Brady
- I legit enjoyed the first few seasons of the show
- While the later seasons were not for me, some people say it gets even better
- Some people feel that Claire Danes's overacting is hard to watch
- I found that towards the end, I was really ready for this show to end as it was starting to lose me