Feb 232012
 




 

 HOMELAND: Season 1: Episode 1 Review

Welcome to the best American TV Show of 2012………………

Finally we can put away our 24 Box-sets……finally say goodbye to our love for Lost, because its been a while since those two shows have finished and we have waited patiently for something to fill the void and now we have it……in the shape of Homeland and what I will say is………kiss your nerves goodbye!

What a show!  A belter of an opener, something that made me swell with pride and start to rock back and foe in anguish that I had to wait for another week for the next episode and the last time I felt like that was when I was in the company of the two Jacks, one that said “Dammit!” a lot and the other who tried to get off that “damn island!”

So where do I start to try and convince you to watch this new show?  Well lets go back to 24, and some of the people behind that groundbreaking show have their hands all over this show even though they have stressed that its nothing like in the day of Jack Bauer.  Which after watching the first episode they are right but also wrong because while the structure is totally different, you do get the same addictive feeling you had when that clock ticked down and believe me, like when 24 was first aired on a Sunday Night, I bet you anything that Homeland suffer the same fate in that it will be the TV show everyone be talking about on a Monday morning!

Howard Gordon who served on the  X-Files and was once in charge of 24, brings the addictive tone that is needed these days to entice the viewers and we are straight away thrown into the drama when we meet up with Carrie Mathison, a CIA operative who is racing through the streets of Baghdad in hope to stop an execution. Before I go any further lets just mention Claire Danes in the role of Carrie.  Now Danes to be fair has not built on the breakthrough performance we saw in Romero and Juliet and while she has had minor success in films like T3, here she is simply wonderful.  Better yet, she blew me away with what I saw in the first hour of this episode.   Obsessive and committed to her job, she is the new Jack Bauer of the female kind, even though she as of yet not subjected anyone to means of torture!

Now before anyone reads that and expecting a Bauer clone……no she does not fight off an army of terrorists or even have a daughter that gets in constant danger, but she like him, does her job in any way means, is loyal to her country and also frowned upon by her peers.  Yes guys, this is a new hero for a new generation.

So enough of the praise, what is Homeland about?  Well it seems after eight long years of being missing in action, Marine Sgt. Nicholas Brody has been found alive and well in Iraq after being held prisoner all this time.  Its a reason to celebrate, everyone is happy, everyone is delighted, apart from our Carrie who believes that Brody is not what he seems.  Could he be a mole?  Could he an enemy of the state?  Is is homecoming a ploy for a much grander plan?

Yes it does seem like the same old story but its done with a wonderful vibe that is a joy to watch and its only the first episode.  Damian Lewis plays the role of Brody with great presence, not giving any clues to the audience in if he is good or bad?  I guess this is going to be the fun part of Homeland in which the cat and mouse between Carrie and Brody will bring huge debate to the watching audience.  At the moment I am 50-50 in what to believe.  At the beginning I had grave doubts into why Carrie would doubt such a hero, I mean this is a guy who has been to hell and back and yet this demented agent believes he is the worst of the kind.  Is her paranoia of past mistakes leading her up a wrong path?  At first I thought so but then we get towards the final quarter and then we get shades of Brody’s Character that did not sit tight with me and maybe for the rest of the viewers.  This does not mean I believe he what Carrie says, but it dropped the right enough hints to make me wonder and that is why this pilot was so wonderfully put together.

The question is and my only gripe is can they sustain this guessing game for the whole series run especially now with a second season already been commished   But the feedback we hearing from over the shores is that this first season just gets better in each single episode and fully deserve’s the plaudits and awards.  I for one can not wait to find out for myself and I really hope the readers of HCF will follow me on this journey…..

Roll on next week……

Ross Hughes

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