Homeland Recap: Surviving 'Like a Cockroach'

Homeland Season 3 Brody ReturnsThis Sunday on Showtime’s Homeland, Nicholas Brody (played by Damian Lewis) finally reared his head again, far from Canada and perhaps as far from being “home” as he ever will be.

In Season 3’s third episode — penned by Henry Bromell, who last month won a posthumous Emmy for writing last season’s “Q&A” — the action picked up in Venezuela, where Brody, gushing blood from a gunshot, was delivered to El Nino, a shady sort with a gang of gunmen.

As Brody is tended to by a mysterious doctor in less-than-ideal conditions (“Could someone do something about the lights?!”), we learn there is an enormous bounty on the Langley Bomber’s head, yet neither El Nino nor the doc are rushing to cash in. When Brody next awakes, he’s in a bed inside the 45-story Caracas slum known as “The Tower of David.” He begs El Nino’s daughter Esme to stop managing his pain with heroin, then sets out to build up his strength. “Why are you helping me?” he asks El Nino. The answer: “You know Carrie Mathison. So do I.”

Brody overdoes it with the ambling around, so the doc checks on him again — and it’s suggested that the two share a similar persona non grata status. (Accounting for his servitude, the doc says, “The world outside can be judgmental and cruel.”) Brody is presented with the man who pinched his passport when he was passed out post-op — before El Nino’s goons lob the guy from the high-rise. Why? Because they cannot risk anyone knowing who and where Brody is. And make no mistake, this is where he is, and ever shall be. “There’s no ‘next place'” to go, El Nino affirms. “This is it for you. The end of the line.”

Brody, however, believes he has the answer, and employs Esme to sneak him off to the local mosque. There, he is indeed welcomed by the Imam and his wife — until he is abruptly assaulted mid-shower by policemen tipped off to his whereabouts. “You are not Muslim. You’re a terrorist,” the Imam scolds… just before he, his wife and the MPs get gunned down by El Nino’s men. “This is what happens,” El Nino says as Brody is relegated to a dingier, darker, cage-like dwelling. “Carrie won’t save you. No one will.”

The doc pays Brody a visit and reiterates El Nino’s point, noting, “Everywhere you go, people die. But you always manage to survive, like a cockroach after nuclear bombs go off.” The doc leaves behind a syringe and tourniquet, which a pained, defeated Brody reaches for at hour’s end.

Meanwhile in the States, Carrie reports to Dr. Cass Winthrop (or, you know, Another World alum Stephen Schnetzer) that she is feeling more lucid as she acclimates to the lithium. But later, in the midst of erecting a fine Popsicle stick house, Carrie steps out to bang her head against a bathroom mirror. After venting her frustration to the nurse who finds her bruised, Carrie is reassured that people care about her — in fact, some man recently came by to ask about her.

Convinced it’s Saul (yet still not rating visiting privileges), Carrie keeps her eyes peeled on the parking lot until she sees a “familiar” SVU pull up. She coerces a compassionate nurse, Abby, to get her downstairs to intercept the visitor, and who she finds is not Saul but Paul Franklin, a law firm associate who says a partner wants to get Carrie out of there. Wary of the man’s motives  — she feels as if he’s recruiting an asset for the Iranians or Syrians — Carrie says she’d rather die inside the psych ward, then goes to ask Abby for her next round of meds.

When last we see Carrie, she is curled up in a dark corner of her room, precisely as we last see Brody.

What did you think of the episode “Tower of David” and Brody’s reappearance? How might he ever get back home? And is anyone else wondering: Did this “Paul Franklin” ever really visit Carrie? (I suppose he did, because: this.) Plus: No Dana this week!

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