Sunday, December 30, 2012

Grace - Homeland Episode Summary 1.2

Grace Homeland episode summary
Synopsis: All are disappointed to see Sergeant Brody turn from American hero to recluse, and this includes Carrie who learns from Saul that a prisoner of war that has been turned would be out relishing in the limelight as he plays the hero card instead of spending his whole day curled in the corner of his bedroom.  But Carrie’s gut tells her that Sergeant Brody is their guy, and getting the unexpected code red message from one of her assets who managed to get visual proof that Abu Nazir has resurfaced only emboldened her suspicion.

Episode Summary: Sergeant Brody sings the Marine’s Hymn as armed guards watch him dig a hole only realizing that the grave is for Corporal Walker when two more armed guards drag his lifeless body towards him.  The guards kick the corpse into the hole, and it falls right in front of him.  One of the guards hauls him up the grave such that he now hovers over his dead friend, despite a gun pointed behind his head Sergeant Brody continues to sing the Marine’s Hymn.  The guard pulls the trigger, and the sound of the gunshot brings Brody out of his nightmare; Brody’s startled awakening roused Carrie.  She watches him sob through the black-and-white feed of the surveillance camera.Continue reading...

Jessica is in the kitchen hurrying to get breakfast ready not wanting to be late for her first day back at work.  Brody comes up behind her, and massages her shoulder, but she jumps at the touch of his hands.  Brody guessed that Jessica was once again a victim of one of his flashbacks, and his wife confirmed it.  Upon hearing this, Carrie rewinds the tape to find Brody gripping Jessica’s arm really tight, she struggles to wake him up, but his shouting in what sounded like Arabic drowned out her pleas.  Upon the urging of his husband, Jessica shows him the bruises on her left arm.

The reporters have camped outside of their house ever since Brody returned home, and the Brodys have gotten tired of the attention not to mention the repeated calls from CBS News that Brody has no intention of answering.  Worried about her husband, Jessica offers to take another day off to be with Brody, but the man insists that he can manage.  Soon after his family left to go about their day, Brody finds himself in a small prison cell.  The thud of newspaper hitting the front door brings him back to reality.  He rushes towards it forgetting that the reporters are outside waiting for him to answer questions.  Still in his pajamas, Brody looks at them like a deer caught in headlights, and returns back inside without the newspaper.  Soon after, the phone rings, Brody ignores it and sits in the corner of his bedroom instead.

Following Carrie’s discovery of Brody’s finger tapping, the crypto team informs Saul the unfortunate news of it not amounting to anything.  It is most likely a tic he developed after spending eight years in the hole, but Saul is not yet ready to throw in the towel that he urges them to keep on looking.  Carrie appears to have him convinced that she truly is on to something, and Saul’s meeting a judge for the sole purpose of getting him to issue a FISA warrant to the point of blackmail is evidence enough that Saul is back on Carrie’s side.  Even Carrie is surprised that he has acquired the sought after document that makes her surveillance somewhat legal for the next four weeks, making the reiteration of his disapproval unconvincing.  His disappointment stems from Carrie pursuing the surveillance despite his instructions not to, and to add insult to injury, she came on to him in a failed and shameful attempt to make things right.  That is now water under the bridge.

Carrie shows Saul a feed of Brody still sitting in the corner of the bedroom, and informs him that the man has nightmares where he repeatedly pleads someone in Arabic to take his life.  Saul does not find this surprising given what the man has been through, but Carrie speculates that his strange behavior must mean something more.  However, to Saul, Brody is actually doing the opposite of what a groomed terrorist would do.  Brody would have done what is expected from a poster boy of war, and that is become the hero people see him to be.  He would have made himself a celebrity.  Convinced that Brody is the prisoner of war that has been turned, Carrie wonders if the man is still in the stage of coming to terms with his fate.  Brody spends his whole day in the corner of his bedroom only leaving it upon the return of his wife.

Lynne Reed is interviewing Stacy Moore, a candidate for Prince Farid’s harem; the young woman stripped to her panties stands as she answers awkward questions from her interviewer.  Latif bin Walid, majordomo for the prince watches her closely, and gives a nod of acceptance before Lynne informs the thrilled young woman that she has made it through the final interview.  Soon after sending Stacy out, Lynne makes a call to her aesthetician stirring suspicion on Latif, but seeing his distrust she hands him the phone as an act of full disclosure.  The man takes the phone and hears only music, since Lynne was put on hold.  Although not completely convinced, Latif leaves the room to fetch the next candidate.  Lynne books a Brazilian wax for noon tomorrow, and uses Carrie as her reference; the woman was very specific of the time.  Latif distrust is not unfounded, because on the other line is a duty officer for the C.I.A. who relays Lynne’s message to Carrie to meet her at noon at the Yara Spa in Georgetown.

Captain Faber gets a surprise visit from his superior and C.I.A. Deputy Director Estes eager to hear an update on Sergeant Brody, but his report is not what the two wanted to hear.  Sergeant Brody has not left his house since his arrival, and is in no condition to becoming the poster boy for war with the task of reminding America that the War on Terror is far from over despite the death of Bin Laden.  Believing that Sergeant Brody is not currently psychologically intact, Captain Faber argues that the man is not yet ready to assume the role of celebrity, but his superior finds this shortcoming as trivial, and manages to insult Captain Faber for being a pushover.  Estes tries a different angle, and brings up the Brodys current financial problems, which can be easily solved with Sergeant Brody’s cooperation.

Brody’s behavior appears to have improved with him out of the bedroom and making breakfast for his family, but the road to recovery is far and wide as evidenced by his handling of the overzealous reporter who made the mistake of trespassing on their backyard, and made the poor judgment of staying his ground to ask questions.  Brody hits Alan Quick of Channel 10 on the chest with the palm of his hand with so much force that the man falls on Brody’s feet choking and gasping for air.  To make it worse, all this happened in front of his shaken son who unexpectedly witnessed the answer to his earlier question of what it is like to kill somebody.  Realizing what he has done, but unsure of how to handle it, Brody just heads through the woods fleeing the site of his crime.  Carrie seeing all this through the live feed orders Max to follow Brody, which he successfully does until Max loses him at the mall after bumping into a customer.

As soon as Virgil arrives for his shift, Carrie rushes to the spa where she is to meet Lynne for their noon appointment, the time that signifies a code red meeting.  Lynne arrives not frantic, but clearly frazzled, and informs Carrie that Abu Nazir paid a visit to Prince Farid bin Abbud’s yacht while they were in Cyprus just five days ago.  There was no need for Lynne to describe the details of their meeting, because she recorded it on her cell phone.  The weight of what she has done gnawed on her at the realization of what is to be her fate if she got caught.  Lynne is done being an asset, but Carrie could not let her go especially now that she is the only asset in seven years that was able to get proof that Abu Nazir is above ground.  The first call Carrie makes is to Saul who is astonished to hear her cryptic message that she has scored a visual confirmation on the most dangerous terrorist in the world.  However, Carrie was wrong to assume that undeniable proof of Abu Nazir resurfacing provides her enough ammunition to request for agency-sanctioned surveillance on Sergeant Brody.  Saul tells her that she has yet to prove a link between Abu Nazir and Brody.  He is sure that a hasty allegation of Sergeant Brody, the prisoner of war turned American hero who her politics-driven superior David Estes’ team rescued and brought home through so much fanfare, as a traitor and a terrorist will not be taken seriously to say the least.  However, the recent development had put the hunt for Abu Nazir way up on the agency’s priority list with a direct order from Estes for Carrie to put every other case in the backburner.  Her first job is to convince Lynne to upload the data on Prince Farid’s BlackBerry, a mighty feat for an asset with the prospect of being stoned to death hanging on her head.  Afraid for her life, Lynne was on the verge of quitting, but her trust in Carrie to guarantee her protection keeps her as one of the agency’s most valuable assets.  Unfortunately for Lynne, she placed too much trust on Carrie unaware that the simple request for backup she put in for her was only mocked leaving Carrie to be the sole member of her Quick Reaction Team.

Mike arrives at the Brodys house on official business.  Clearly, the news of Brody assaulting a reporter, and him fleeing the scene has not gotten out.  But news of Jessica and Mike’s affair has reached Virgil as he watches the two anxiously converse and resist their natural urge to provide and accept comfort from each other.  A few miles away, Brody browses through a hardware store seemingly unaware that he is being followed.  The Brodys sit down for dinner with Uncle Mike already there assuming the role of father, which is an unwelcome sight for Brody who has just returned from his trip to the hardware store.  Brody has bought something from the store that he hides in the garage much to Carrie’s dismay at the discovery that there are no cameras in the garage as a result of budgetary limitations.  Jessica catches sight of Brody stepping out of the garage, and confronts him less about him taking off and more about him punching a reporter in front of their son.  Brody’s offhanded response put her in a sour mood, while Brody manages to put on a mask hiding his annoyance at finding Mike at their dinner table.  He, however, was caught off-guard at learning that his family has started a new ritual where they are to say grace before a meal, a custom his son happily and willingly takes part of that he implores his mother to let him say the prayer.  Chris without any qualms expresses his gratitude at having his father back.  After dinner, Mike finally gets to do the job he came to do, and that is to convince Brody to accept the interview requests from CBS News, and all the other perks that come if he chooses to cooperate.  Brody could see through Mike, the obedient soldier out to do his master’s bidding no matter what the cost.  Unlucky for him, Brody’s ordeal taught him defiance, and he sends Mike back to his master with a message that he has changed.  Brody refuses to take orders from the military or the United States government; his only wish is to get the lost eight years back, the years where he should have been with his family instead of spending it in a hole the terrorists dug for him.  Jessica hears all of this, and keeps it to herself.  Realizing his mistake, Brody apologizes to his son for being a witness to his violent outburst, an apology his son accepts, but offered little comfort to the traumatized boy who regrettably has grown afraid of his father.  Brody spends the rest of his evening on the couch watching basketball, his mind is far from the present, but he nonetheless manages to consciously resist his wife’s attempt to win him back.

Prince Farid has arrived in Washington D.C., and as Lynne receives instructions from Latif, Virgil dressed in a suit speaking on his phone bumps into her and spills coffee all over her blouse.  Latif handles the apologetic klutz careful not to make a scene and cause problems for the prince, at the same time he instructs Lynne to quickly wash off the stain before the prince arrives.  Lynne makes her way to the hotel’s public restroom startled to see Carrie waiting for her with specific instructions that she is to attach the plug-in device hidden in the compact into the prince’s BlackBerry that will upload his phone’s data in forty-five seconds.  If Lynne succeeds in her mission, they are to meet at the spa again to return the device to Carrie in person.  Already wary of her situation, Lynne asks for reassurance that Carrie has provided her with protection, and the agent unwilling to compromise the mission lies through her teeth providing false security on a highly dangerous task that may very well cost her asset’s life.

Carrie pays a visit to her sister where her overjoyed nieces provide her with a warm welcome.  Although she missed Ruby’s, the older niece, birthday, Carrie had the sense to bring her much belated gift.  Her understanding sister knows very well the reason for Carrie’s visit, being the psychiatrist in the family, a convenient profession especially for a family with two members suffering from the same sickness, Maggie hands her sister seven pills of Clozapine, but gets a complaint for being stringy on the medication instead of a simple thank you.  Carrie failed to see that her sister has put her license in jeopardy for illegally providing her prescription medication.  Moreover, she failed to recognize that her caring sister is genuinely more worried about the state of her mental health than her career.  As a psychiatrist, Maggie is not in the habit of dispensing drugs without therapy, and insists that Carrie see her regularly or at the very least officially go see a psychiatrist, but Carrie makes it clear that there is no room for people with mental illness in her profession.  The agency will revoke her security clearance the second they get wind of her mental illness.  Although disappointed, Maggie lets Carrie be on her way, letting her sister miss dinner and disappointing their father who has yet to return from a day of golfing with her husband.

Brody awakes on the floor of his bedroom, and remembers the day he found the door of his cell unexpectedly unlocked.  He gets up and navigates through the hallways of his house eerily similar to the way he did so in prison unaware that Carrie is watching his every move closely, but then he enters the garage that elicited expletives from Carrie directed at Virgil.  The one blind spot in the whole Brody house, and inside it Brody clears a space, sweeps the floor, fixes the garage door that he opens a crack to let a sliver of sunshine in, a reminder of the time he pushed a door open leaving him showered with the warmth and the glow of the sunshine he was deprived of for years.  In a room next to the door, he hears men chanting as they all together face towards the sun and bow in prayer.  In his garage, Brody ceremonially washes his hands, takes out from the rug he bought from the hardware store, lays it down on the floor, and chants the prayer of his captors, “Allahu Akbar.” Later, he returns to his bedroom where his wife has just waken up surprised to see him up and about, and strangely giddy as he informs her that he fixed the garage door.  Soon after, Sergeant Brody in full regalia steps out of his house ready to answer questions from the reporters that have patiently waited for him to come out of his shell.  At that moment, Carrie gives Saul a call happy to learn that her suspicion is close to being vindicated.  Sergeant Nicholas Brody has come out to play the hero.


Watch the Homeland episode Grace
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