Homeland Recap: Cease and [Bleep]ing Desist!

This Sunday on Showtime’s Homeland, something I thought wouldn’t happen anytime soon instead did, while something I dreaded was sure to happen didn’t. And that is why this show rocks.

The episode opens with Roya intercepting Brody to stress that since they lost a man in the Gettysburg attack, he’ll need to play an even larger role moving forward. When Brody balks, she assures, “Things are going to move quickly now… This is no time to bug. We’re almost there.” And to that end, she directs him to “keep Walden very happy.” That last bit puzzles Carrie and Quinn, who are busy rehashing the Gettysburg snafu that landed Peter in the hospital. What did the Mystery Man and his team extract from behind the tailor’s wall? Based on the few clues, it wasnt a dirty bomb but quite possibly “enough C4 to level an embassy or synagogue.”

SAUL TO THE ‘MAX | Speaking of the Mystery Man (played by 24‘s Mido Hamada), Saul spends much of the episode visiting captured Season 1 terrorist Aileen Morgan in her supermax facility, where she spends 23 hours a day in solitary. Saul needs her help in IDing the guy Roya met with by the fountain. First, Aileen wants this confab to take place “upstairs” in a windowed room. And two, if she is to part with intel, she wants to be guaranteed a cell with a view. When the prison’s a–hole of a warden refuses to play ball with Saul the “big shot” with “devil-may-care grooming” who in his sandbox “doesn’t have the kind of power he’s accustomed to,” Saul goes over the grouch’s head to the Attorney General. But until Aileen has the promise on paper, she’s mum — yet enjoys Saul’s gift of bread, wine and cheese. “I’m not getting f–ked over on this,” she asserts.

En route to a fundraiser for Walden’s presidential run, Dana tells Finn she attended the hit-and-run victim’s funeral, and desperately wants for them to tell their folks what happened. Finn ultimately agrees, though on his terms as far as timing. In a separate car, Jessica tells Brody that Mike suspects he killed Tom Walker. Brody covers, saying that on behalf of the CIA he reached out to his old pal, but things went sideways and “Yes, I did have a part in stopping him.” When Jessica responds with the only possible reaction — “What the f–k?!” — he explains that Walker had “lost his way” and “couldn’t get right again.”

TURNING OFF THE MIKE | The first chance he gets, Brody phones Carrie to ask how his wife could know about Tom. Carrie assures him that she will “take care of Faber,” and that she does. Meeting with the major in private, she explains that Brody is “essential” in thwarting an imminent terrorist event. As such, “If we weren’t clear the first time, let me drive it home: Cease and f–king desist.” She suggests that because Mike is in love with Jessica and was about to move in with her when Brody came home (nice callback to her Season 1 surveillance sessions), he’s “emotional” about this whole thing. But maybe he’d be better to play the long game. “Sometime soon she and those kids might really need you,” Carrie teases. She adds, perhaps also talking to herself: “I hope you get what you want.”

At the fundraiser, Brody fields awkward questions from “lookie-loos,” while Walden grills Estes about the Gettysburg mess, saying, “I can’t have lunatics on the loose with explosives.” The host for the event, Rex, pulls Brody aside for a walk and talk, revealing that while he doesn’t care for Walden-the-non-war-veteran, “I’m looking eight years down the road, to you.” Brody tries to explain, “I’m not that man” — though that would make a helluva Homeland Season 10: Terrorist-in-Chief.

SEEMS LIKE OLD TIMES | Brody’s next stop is an unplanned assignation with Carrie in the woods, and for the ensuing several minutes I was, quite literally, saying, “No. No. No. No. No…” at my screen. Why? Because based on how little information was exchanged, the only reason this scene seemed to exist was to put Brody within arm’s length of Carrie so that Jessica might stumble across them, or at the very least spy them from afar. Especially when the two held hands, and then fell into a heated clinch. “I do feel used and played…. but I also feel good,” Brody said mid-makeout. “Two minutes with you, and I feel good. How do you pull that off?” And yet… this encounter was not witnessed by Jessica. Kudos, Homeland. I definitely watched too many soaps as a kid.

Speaking of kids…. We come to the plot point that sneaked up on me. Because despite the promise he made to Dana, I had zero faith that Finn would ever utter a peep about the hit-and-run. And he was not about to. But when he and Dana got into a loud squabble over their differing intentions, Dana blurts out to their moms: “We killed someone.” Alrighty then! After a more private debriefing, Cynthia Walden sends the kids off, then compares notes with Jessica, who of is course assuming they will do the right thing and lawyer up. “We have to remember we’re on the world stage here,” a steely SLOTUS counters. “I’ll take care of it…. You’ll have to follow my lead.”

THE WRONG MAN | Over at the supermax facility, Saul presents Aileen with the faxed confirmation of their deal, and she promptly IDs the guy in the photo as Mohammad Al Ghandi, a “gun-crazy” conspirator who has been in the States about a year. But when the FBI storms the suspect’s Newark address, they find the wrong man. “Why would she do that?” Saul wonders — and then it hits him. Racing back to their meeting room, Saul finds Aileen has used an eyeglass lens shard to slit her wrists, having enjoyed her full day in the sun, so to speak. With Quinn, Saul later kicks himself and his “sloppy” work.

‘DAD?’ | After Rex announces to his well-heeled guests his decision to back the Walden/Brody ticket and the “truly bright future” it offers, Brody — fresh from a soothing swim and a Dana update from Jessica — privately confronts his running mate about the hit-and-run problem. “Just let it lie,” Walden suggests/demands. “We’re running for the most important office in the world; a screw-up by a couple of teenagers won’t stand in our way.” Undeterred, Brody takes his daughter to the cop shop to tell the truth, only to find Carrie waiting for him. “You’ll alienate Walden” by doing this, she explains. “The whole thing will be off,” meaning alllll of his treasonous laundry will be aired. Dana wanders into the scene à la Saturday Night Live to ask, “Dad? What is this?” Brody says she can’t confess to the accident “right now,” but the lass smells a “bullsh—er.” “You make me sick,” she groans, then skulks off. “This is not OK,” Brody corrects a reassuring Carrie. “None of this is f–king OK!”

What did you think of Homeland Season 2, Episode 7? Were you glad to see the teens not harbor the hit-and-run secret for far too long? How do you think Brody’s decision to comply with a cover-up might backfire? (Hmm, what if Roya were to find out? Bonus leverage!)