Remember when I wrote that Homeland was back and how I was excited I was for the season finale for the first time in years?
That was but a fool’s errand.
The fourth season went out with a whimper as Homeland decided that things had gotten far too interesting in Islamabad and decided to come home so Carrie could mourn her father. Hey look, here’s Carrie’s mother that we’ve never seen before! And Carrie doesn’t want to drown her ginger kid anymore! And she’s going to hook up with Quinn? Wait, what?
Yeah, what’s Homeland without an ill-advised romantic subplot? Quinn and Carrie have no real reason to hook up beyond that they are heterosexuals who work together. Yet, here they are, planning to leave the CIA life behind with a little help from each other. Quinn has been beaten into submission by every other character on the show telling him that he’s in love with Carrie.
The trend of spending the finale episode of a season is becoming an annoying one. Why is it so much to ask a show to wrap up its current plotline properly before moving on to the next one? The revelation that Dar Adal was working with super terrorist Haqqani seemed to be setting up a big CIA showdown. Instead, Adal just kind of shrugged it all off. “Sorry bros, gotta wheel and deal with shady ass people in this biz.” And then F. Murray Abraham put on a pair of cool sunglasses and drove off in his dad’s sweet convertible.
Sorry, I blacked out there for a second. Where am I? Oh yeah, the lack of a proper conclusion to the season’s main storyline.
It probably would have served Homeland much better to have aired the finale after 13 Hours in Islamabad. Such a heavy blow was struck in that episode that a quiet finale would have made a lot of sense. Game of Thrones follows that structure, with a big throwdown followed by picking up the pieces.
Instead, Homeland went and wound things up a little more with Quinn’s revenge quest. That episode doesn’t really fit in with this finale. It didn’t feel like anything was resolved there. Life is messy and often without resolution in these scenarios, but this isn’t life. Fiction requires resolution. Homeland didn’t provide that. It shifted gears so jarringly that it’s left fans of the show frustrated.