Is Sgt. Brody a family man or a terrorist? Don’t you wish he had a Facebook status about that which you could just check? Man! Homeland gave a great twist this week in the episode “Achilles Heel.”

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Homeland “Achilles Heel” Review

The concept of an Achilles heel is nothing new. Part of me wishes that shows would constantly strive to introduce us to new concepts the way Joss Whedon educated Buffy the Vampire Slayer (and Dollhouse) fans about Tabula Rasa (essentially a blank slate.) However, with a show as good as Homeland (the director should get a million gold stars for the atmosphere in this episode, especially when Saul was outside his house at the end) classic themes of exploration like an Achilles heel don’t feel weak in the least.

Seeing the Brody family bonding was very sweet, it gave me hope for their family that had seemed so fractured. Chris Brody (Jackson Pace) who hardly even knew his Dad (Damian Lewis) finally seems to be comfortable with him. And even Dana (Morgan Saylor) seemed excited about her parents dressing up and going to a party together.

Carrie (Claire Danes) has developed a bit of personal loyalty to Brody, even when she confessed she’d slept with him to Saul. This is worrisome. When she heard Brody say he was the one who killed Walker that was a pretty big fact to withhold.

Saul (Mandy Patinkin) has a really lovely house, kind of a country theme going on, almost, but done in black, white and red. The Homeland set dresser really did well there. I’d basically like to move into that house, thank you. But who cares about your house when your wife is leaving you? Saul couldn’t keep Mira in the States, and it’s hard to blame her for leaving.

I have another tiny note about Saul. He always seems so professional, but we learned in this episode that he doesn’t actually know how to type. I find this sweet – but only from him. From my parents (who are openly too stubborn to learn) the chicken pecking needs to stop. Ya hear?

There are so many questions to ask about Tom Walker. Where do we even start? Hopefully the series plans to show, not tell, what happened to him. Brody was told Walker was dead, but that never happened. Instead, he is alive and homeless. Oh, and definitely a turned pow. His Achilles heel is his family. And it looks like Helen Walker wasn’t properly groomed to turn against her husband. Because, just hearing Tom say her first name made her break down and reveal that the call was being traced so he could flee. Damn. Now he has a gun and a fire under his feet.

This was the first episode of Homeland where I didn’t feel suspicious of Brody. (I suspect this was the intended effect.) He was a family man again, and he’s even being groomed for a political position. (I typoed as “poison” first, – a telling mistake of my views on politics.) People trust him, even Carrie.

Apparently, we shouldn’t.

Because Brody has a lot of secrets that haven’t been revealed. Just when I thought the plot of the show “has Brody been turned” was dead in the water, once again I find myself unsure if Brody has turned against the USA or if he’s caught up in something else. We know he was friendly with Nazir. That, in itself, doesn’t mean he was turned. And the guard who told Carrie this tip only spoke of one. But isn’t it possible that both Walker and Brody were turned, but that as a contingency based approach for plans they weren’t made aware of each others participation?

As usual, Homeland delivered an episode of high caliber and I can’t wait for more.

Grade: A

Rewatch: Yes, as part of a season 1 rewatch.

React: What is YOUR Achilles heel? Do you trust Brody? Do you know people who chicken peck at keyboards still?

Homeland airs on Showtime and stars Claire Danes, Damian Lewis and Mandy Patinkin.

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