Homeland Season Three Episode Nine Recap: One Last Chance for “One Last Time”

“One Last Time” is what I’d call a bridge episode; it doesn’t function well on its own, since it’s stuck finding a way to get from one plot arc to the next, tying up loose ends and navigating awkward plotting. (It’s like a bottle episode, except instead of saving money for the series, it’s saving the show’s plotting.) If you can accept this as a necessary evil and even admire the way in which the writers are navigating out of what might have been a narrative dead end (especially if they’re ballsy enough to actually kill Brody, now that he’s back in play), “One Last Time” is fine, albeit redundant, serving more as a “Previously On…” than as an expression of anything new. (TVDW found more to admire about this episode than I did, but he also more directly calls out some of the plots–especially Mira’s–as being “ugh.”) Hopefully, “One Last Time,” which had to resort to a montage to get things in order–that’s how dire things got–will be the last episode of Homeland in which a doctor criticizes a pregnant Carrie’s reckless lifestyle choices, in which Saul acts like an amoral robot as he orders every illegal procedure under the sun so long as it brings peace in the Middle East, and in which Dana and Brody cry over one another. Nothing new to see there, people: let’s see what horrible things happen when Brody goes to Tehran, posing as the 12/12 bomber he’s spent so much time begging people to believe that he’s not. And for more, feel free to read my full recap over at Slant Magazine.

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