Homeland Season 3: The CIA Under Fire, Saul's Betrayal and Brody's Top-Secret Return

HOMELAND (Season 2)The cast and producers of Showtime’s Homeland appeared at the Television Critics’ Assoc. summer press tour on Monday to preview Season 3 — with at least one actor doing his best to conceal a major plot point.

“I’m not Damian,” a buzzed-cut ginger who sure looked like Damian Lewis claimed in the course of dodging a question about his alter ego’s Season 3 status.

Showrunner Alex Gansa said it “would be a betrayal” to specify exactly when disgraced Marine sergeant Nicholas Brody is next seen, though he was OK with it being divulged — as per the first screeners sent to the press — that it does not happen in (spoiler alert) the first two episodes.

VIDEO | Homeland Season 3 Teaser: Where’s Brody?

After all, Lewis noted, “Brody is on the lam,” having disappeared into an exfiltration process coordinated by Carrie at the close of Season 2, after a bomb planted in Brody’s car exploded at the CIA, killing more than 100 people.

“He’s the most wanted criminal in the world, at this point, so he has to lay low,” the actor added. “When you do see Brody, hopefully of interest to the audience is, ‘What state will he be in? Is he surrounded by a bevy of Russian beauties? Or is he hidden away?’ But I do hope when you see him for the first time, it will be interesting.”

This much else can sensibly be revealed about the new season of the acclaimed cable drama:

As Season 3 opens, Carrie is again off her meds (“What are ya gonna do?” Claire Danes shrugged) and things are “pretty bleak” in the wake of the CIA bombing and the tragedy’s unusual circumstances (including what Carrie and Saul knew and when they knew it.)

Cue a Jack Bauer Season 7-style series of appearances before a senate committee, where things are said that perhaps cannot be unsaid. “Carrie does feel betrayal” on Saul’s part, previewed Danes. “But even though they’re estranged from each other [as a result], they’re very deeply connected.”

Gansa said a theme of Season 3  is “the cost that being an intelligence officer exacts on the people in that career. As a result of the attack, the CIA itself is on trial” and as such “Saul has to make some uncharacteristic decisions he’s not used to making”” — and with the fate of his very agency in jeopardy. “He’s actually fearful that he might be the last director of the CIA.”

Elsewhere on the canvas, the producers and a new batch of writers asked themselves the tough question: “Are we interested in watching the Brody family if Nicholas Brody wasn’t part of the mix? And the consensus was there is interest in Jessica, Dana and Chris,” Gansa related. “It felt like a very good avenue to explore, how this [terrorist act seemingly perpetrated by a husband/father] would reverberate down on these people.”

Also during the TCA panel, Gansa maintained Season 3 isn’t meant as a response to backlash about leaps of logic made last year (“Our 11 Emmy nominations are a nice comeback,” he countered); it was revealed that the show will return to film on location in Israel “for the last couple episodes of the season”; and Lewis did not take for granted his longevity on the series where no major character is safe. (R.I.P, David Estes.)

“These guys have been trying to kill me since Episode 1,” Lewis remarked. “But you must be ruthless with the story and with characters — so I’m sure there will be more [deaths].”

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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37 Comments
  1. Jake says:

    What’s happening with Peter Quinn? Huge fan of the dude.

    • He’s coming back in Season Three even though Rupert Friend is now being bumped as a “series regular”.

    • Wyngate says:

      I liked his character. It was honest. But I thought he went down with the ship in the blast. I will have to watch that last episode again. Did Mike survive, or did he pass with the explosion.
      And to be honest, did everyone who was at the VP memorial die? That’s an assumption all of you are making. The writers can revive anyone they want down the road. Don’t be so quick to believe everything you read. Many believe that Saul has always been the so called mole. I still have a tough time with that, but anything is possible with this show. Still my favorite.

  2. Boston2AZ says:

    “And the consensus was there is interest in Jessica, Dana and Chris”. Should have asked the fans. Bet he would have gotten a much different answer.

    • Lee says:

      Yeah those 3 are total snoozefests… Can’t believe they didn’t say a word about Peter Quinn. He and carrie are the only characters that captivated me last season.

      • ENAD says:

        I agree completely with you. I cannot stand Brody’s family but to be perfectly honest, tthey may serve a purpose for perhaps the first couple episodes in that it’s realistic that they should be questioned by investigators looking for Brody, but other than that, I do not see their contined purpose on the show and I have no desire to see how they struggle to live a normal life being the family of a ‘terrorist’ and ‘traitor’.

        But I’m betting that Peter Quinn will no longer be feeling as benevolent towards Brody as he did when he threatened Estes and saved Brody. I bet he’ll be feeling quite guilty and will be focused on finding him and finishing the job.

        Also, I’m curious to see how Carrie will be covering the fact that she left the scene of the explosion and returned since she changed clothes and everything. Hopefully they’ll be explaining this.

    • ben says:

      First and foremost a TV show is the story the writers want to tell. The moment TV shows try to react to every piece of ‘fan’ feedback, the quicker they find themselves going down the drain.

      • Britta Unfiltered says:

        That is excellently put. I really hate it when shows change their story lines to make some of their louder fans happy. It makes me lose respect for a show when they do that. It makes me want to scream, you’re the writer! Do what you want to do and what makes you happy! Everything else will work itself out.

      • Shaun says:

        Not every,just that specific one.

    • Sparky says:

      If I never saw Dana again it would be too soon!!!!

    • Britta Unfiltered says:

      Not entirely true. I am extremely interested in seeing what happens to the Brody family. Because I imagine it’s going to be horrible and very ugly. That is a great storyline to explore, particularly after what we’ve seen the wife of the Boston bomber go through this summer.

      • grayton says:

        Surely you’re not suggesting that Morena Baccarin’s character and the real-life Mrs. Tamerlan T
        are in similar situations?!

    • CBWBDK1 says:

      I was going to post the same thing. There is no interest in their story.

    • drhenning says:

      The Showtime nudity patrol would want to see Jessica hook up with someone for the obvious reasons…

  3. Thom says:

    I’m actually please that Brody isn’t in the first two episodes. We need some time to see how everyone reacts to his “betrayal” before we see how he’s dealing with it. The strange thing is that Brody is no longer the most important part of Brody’s story, lol.

    Bummer about his family still being there though. Every time they’re on screen, it takes so much away from everything else going on. It will probably seem especially forced now that there isn’t a Brody connecting them to the main storyline.

  4. FarleyC says:

    Is there a Season 3 premiere date?

  5. I’ll be “shocked” if Saul turns himself into the dark side.

  6. Mackenzie says:

    I am a huge fan of the show, but they’re kidding themselves if they think there’s any interest in the Brody family without Nicholas in the fold of the story. No one wants to see that, and it’s disheartening to hear they’re going to shoe horn them into the new season anyway.

    • Richard says:

      I am interested in it, why aren’t you?

      • FatherOctavian says:

        Me too. The human side is what keeps this show from being another “24”. The car wreck (pun fully intended) that was Dana’s storyline last season was a fault of the writing, not a fault of the character. Give them something real and human and not forced, and I’m game to watch.

    • A says:

      I don’t have a huge problem with watching them deal with the aftermath of the finale. Maybe, though, it’d be better if they do it in small doses. I’d really only be interested in seeing Jessica though. We don’t need to see the kids at school or hanging out with their friends all the time like last season–that, I would find uninteresting. I kind of wish Mike was still going to be around. I liked him.

  7. A says:

    Anyone know if Virgil will be back? Love Virgil!!

    • Midori says:

      I don’t think he is, I think he has a new show.

    • Britta Unfiltered says:

      I checked IMDB for him about a month ago, and he’s not credited as being in any episodes this season. Sad, right?

      • A says:

        That sucks. He was awesome and he brought that little bit of humor to the show. I hope he might pop up at least once. Fingers crossed!

    • N.B.E says:

      He IS coming back (yay!), but only as a guest star this season, no longer a regular. (To be honest, I didn’t even realize he was considered a regular until they announced he wouldn’t be in Season 3)

  8. Britta Unfiltered says:

    Matt, you’ve already seen the first two episodes? Lucky! I’m not sure I’m liking this angle of Brody not being around. He is literally 90% of the reason I watch the show. I’m sure they’ll make it good still though. I trust the writers.

  9. David S says:

    Those 11 Emmy nods are based on selected episodes sent in for judgment, no? So it’s 1.) not judging the season as a whole 2.) bit of campaigning that helps secure them. I dislike that they’re unwilling to acknowledge that season 2 was a bit more ridiculous than season 1 – and try to hide behind Emmy nods as if that makes them impervious to criticism. Some people.

  10. Rachel says:

    “Yes! More Dana!” – no one, ever

  11. lily says:

    who the hell wants to see more dana? that kid is the worst character, combined with the worst actress I’ve seen on TV in many, many years. she’s a dead weight around this show’s neck. if i have to watch that little brat doing anything more than necessary for plot development, i’m gonna end up throwing a rock at my TV screen

  12. renebeenie says:

    I love Homeland Can’t wait for it’s return Sept 29 More Brody

  13. Ris says:

    love the show but how many times can they rewrite Carrie being off her meds, it’s getting old and annoying.

    • N.B.E says:

      I like it- It’s for a different reason this time- she wants to go off her meds in S3 because she believes the meds were the reason she didn’t see Abu Nazir’s plan coming. It’s a choice between having her emotions in check or her genius. She apparently chooses the latter.
      That means we get [the even more] Crazy Carrie back!

  14. Broadwayfan says:

    In US programs we’re so used to main characters being ‘in danger’, but we know they won’t die. Unless we know beforehand about a particular actor’s status.In British series NOONE is safe. They often kill off major characters.
    But, I can’t imagine losing Brody.As for his family…I wouldn’t miss them at all if they’re gone.
    I don’t have SHOWTIME, and jump through hoops every week trying to connect with a website that will allow me to see an episode. I’ve almost decided to check out cost for the pay channel, or pay amazon per episode. I can’t do without it!

  15. Steph says:

    I can’t wait for season 3 in OZ, my mum and I are huge fans. I really can’t wait to see where Quinn ends up, I personally think he has a thing for Carrie and those two will end up together ;) otherwise he’s protecting her and Brodie because he’s got a concoction of his own for those two…It’s too hard to tell because it could go absolutely any way, but I’m really excited for the new season and can’t wait to see where the characters end up.