What I liked:
- This is something I liked and disliked at once. Peter Quinn’s character. They splintered and broke him again, and unlike season three, didn’t sweep that story arc under the rug, but they also neglected what they could have done with it. I absolutely love his character though.
- Like season one and two, it starts as a slow burn and next thing you know things have ratcheted up beyond belief and you are at the edge of your seat.
- I loved the recurring characters. Martha Boyd, the ambassador, was great and a strong woman, no matter when things went south, she still did her job. John Redmond, the deputy station chief who initially gave Carrie lip but is extremely good at his job. Max coming on again, because he is such a cool guy, though socially awkward and inept. Fara was also wonderfully done out and about.
- Saul’s reaction to his kidnapping and how he dealt with it, as well as the consequences thereof.
- The taking of the embassy. I mean just oh my goodness, that was so ridiculously intense and a bag of chips. I didn’t know what to do with it. The slayings, the murders, the manipulation, the frustration, and how it was implemented was just… perfect.
What I didn’t like:
- Absolutely nothing to reference Brody’s death, what happened after it, how Carrie dealt with it, nothing.
- Saul Berenson not being in this as much as I would have liked.
- Carrie Mathison. I absolutely hate this character. I don’t know when last I resented someone this much on screen. I despise her more than Joffrey Baratheon. Yes, I said it. What a psycho! I hate how she just does what she wants when she wants, how she is always walking over people, how she never pays for anything she does and gets her own way without fail, as well as how much people indulge her. I do not, for one second, believe that the US government would keep someone like that employed.
- Carrie is such a victim. She plays all strong and like she doesn’t need anyone then when crap hits the fan then all of a sudden she is crying and shaking and broken and still a pain in my ass.
- The entire time that Saul was away, we got no look into how Mira felt about it.
- Season four started telling only the American side of things, which was disappointing because season one and two handled the two sides of the story very well, though you are still expected to commiserate with the Americans more.
- Carrie’s dad dies and then suddenly her mom turns up. That just felt forced, like they somehow still had to have some familial aspect outside of her sister in, and needed more drama on the Carrie angle. As if there is not enough. Humph.
- The love story/relationship aspect that has finally been realised between Carrie and Quinn. I mean really?! What is it about Carrie that men love so much? How could Quinn be so absolutely stupid?
So after the abomination that was season three, I didn’t really have too much hope. Season three bombed so bad, I burnt my fingers there. But moving on, here was four. It starts abruptly and doesn’t really show you how anything has changed since Brody’s death, and moves on to other things. Again, a slow burn season, as it is something that seems to be stock standard for Homeland, which I have no issue with, provided that they are laying down some good groundwork for what is to come. Let me tell you, that is something this season did well. Everything was trundling along perfectly fine, albeit slightly bland at times, and then BOOM. Everything changes. Carrie, naturally, sickened me endlessly, especially banging that kid Aayan, I was so horrified. She is old enough to be his mother, so that was not cool. I really wished to see more Saul in this one, I am quite attached to his character, but at least he wasn’t forgotten altogether, and when he was he was owning screen time as always. Aasar Khan was a cool character, too, though I certainly believe that more time could have been spent developing him, he was interesting. And that accent! Goodness! A lot of the supporting characters this season were well worth the watch, if not scene-stealers every time they made their appearances, which was a nice and refreshing thing. I liked Redmond, he was just not going to suck up to Carrie quite the same way the rest were going to. Seeing Fara in the field was good, and I thought how she and Max were together was so cute. Then again, I have always loved Max, and Fara is quite sweet, and they just work together exceptionally well. I was freaking over Carrie screwing up the whole time, getting away with it, and then having the gall to chirp people on how to do their jobs. Really, really now?! Shut up! I thought it was well implemented how Carrie wound up on the wrong drugs and seeing Brody, that could have gone sour quickly – when I saw Brody, I thought we were having us a real Days of Our Lives time, which is so not how this show is. Could someone from the male population please explain to me why everyone seems to want to bang Carrie?! Argh! When season four starts ramping up, that tension is insane, riveting you to your chair. I was enjoying myself, sure, and then the one episode ended and my nerves were shot. That’s when things got insane – totally and utterly insane. Terrorist attacks, invaded embassies, casualties left, right, and centre, Quinn going rogue, all of it. I loved it. Although I hated the fact that they have finally actually realised this freaking relationship between Carrie and Quinn. As if we needed to see one more guy flock after her – especially one guy I respected so much! Quinn obviously has a big fan base, Natasha can attest, so we do not need that blonde bitch defiling him. Needless to say, Homeland has redeemed itself in my eyes.