Homeland 2 Season
The second season of the American television drama series Homeland premiered on September 30, 2012 on Showtime and concluded on December 16, 2012, consisting of 12 episodes. The series is loosely based on the Israeli television series Hatufim (English: Prisoners of War) created by Gideon Raff and is developed for American television by Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa.
Homeland 2 Season
On Rotten Tomatoes, the season has an approval rating of 93% with an average score of 8.6 out of 10 based on 42 reviews. The website's critical consensus reads, "Homeland is proving itself one of the best thrillers on television, as its second season ratchets up the tension and benefits from increased chemistry between its stars." The second season of Homeland scored a Metacritic rating of 96 out of 100 based on 21 reviews. Based on aggregation of television critics' top-ten lists, the season was ranked as the second best television show of 2012 by HitFix, and third best by Metacritic. TV Guide named it the best television show of 2012.
Claire Danes, Damian Lewis, and Mandy Patinkin star in the hit Showtime series, which won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series for its first season. Claire is now a two-time Emmy winner for her role as Carrie Mathison.
There have been questions since halfway through Homeland's first season about how it could sustain itself, and its trademark level of intensity and quality storytelling into the future. The questions remains unanswered. As much fun as Season Two has been, it hasn't matched the brilliance of Season One. It has still given me heart palpitations and has probably lead to a rise in Xanax prescriptions across the board as it's played out, but what about its substance?
I will say without question that I loved "Broken Hearts" as I watched it, but after I calmed down for a bit the plot holes and absurdities began creeping in around the edges of my otherwise starry-eyed view. Homeland is an incredibly entertaining show, but it set a bar for itself (and had one set for it after the Emmys this year) that it may not be able to live up to in quite the way we expect. That may just be the nature of the choices it made in the first season and the corners it painted itself into, but it doesn't diminish from the fact that it's still a fun ride. And with only two episodes left in this season, we're close to finding out where it all ends up.
-- Is Quinn there to find a mole? And does Estes think it's Saul? It's almost assuredly Galvez (I apologize for dropping the G for most of the season), since he was able to survive the attack and just as he shows back up Nazir is able to escape yet again.
Some might argue that "Homeland's" second season is bound to be a disappointment, now that we know Brody is working for the terrorist Abu Nazir. But we also know something else: The show's writers, led by executive producers Alex Gansa and Howard Gordon, are unlikely to settle for cheap thrills, which makes it even more pleasurable to settle in for the second saga of Carrie and Brody.
During "Homeland's" first season, I kept waiting for the show to cheapen or undercut the characters in order to artificially create pulse-pounding tension, but the show didn't go that route. I didn't care much for the Issa-centric episode -- it was a case of the show too strongly underlining points that had already been made -- but otherwise, Season 1 unfolded like a great spy novel, the kind that makes you stay up until 3 a.m. and also makes you wonder why more intelligence agents don't crack under the pressure. It wasn't just that Carrie and Brody couldn't trust anyone else -- the most poignant fact was that, torn by so many competing facts and allegiances, they often couldn't trust themselves.
The tragic irony of "Homeland's" first season finale was that Claire Danes' Carrie Mathison did, in fact, get things right. But she didn't know that; she didn't get the cathartic rush the audience did when she prevented Brody from blowing up a room full of high-ranking dignitaries. Though that sequence was one of last year's edge-of-your-seat high points, to "Homeland's" credit, it wasn't the point of the finale: The point was that Brody's human connections reeled him in (temporarily) from the dark side, and that Carrie's heedless desire to connect the dots left her bipolar agony on heartbreaking display.
Yet keeping enormous secrets comes at a cost, a cost that Brody, who is a congressman as the season begins, continues to pay. "Homeland's" makeup artists, directors and camera operators deserve special praise; there's a pale, sweaty pallor the characters sometimes wear, and when it's paired with a certain tilted camera angle, the aesthetic choices combine to make these otherwise attractive humans look sick with clammy anxiety. We know that apprehension comes from the darkest places in the characters' souls, but that doesn't make us popcorn-munching voyeurs any less obsessed with finding out what happens next.
That's hard to figure out because Carrie and Brody are evasive entities who are partly unknown to themselves, despite everyone else's desire to pin them down. Is Brody truly a devoted Muslim? Does he agree with the terrorist aims of Abu Nazir? His wife wants to know know if he can pull off the kind of credible political career that would raise the family's standing; it'd be her reward for enduring years of fear and doubt during Brody's captivity. Still reeling from her breakdown last season, Carrie wants to be far away from the CIA, but she can't help checking intelligence sites on the Internet. Once she tentatively gets back in the game, she wonders if her perceptions can be trusted, and almost all the characters have occasion to ask themselves if they're making the right choices. "Homeland" makes a convincing case that gut instincts, unrealistic ideals and incomplete facts can be very risky allies.
For both Brody and Carrie, not knowing which way they'd jump is, at times, a blessing, not a curse. Both know what it's like to lose their scars and their baggage behind secret identities, false fronts and cover stories. Neither of them can stay away from risky trajectories, and that, as we saw in Season 1, made them a toxically romantic pair of soulmates. The show wisely keeps Carrie and Brody apart at the beginning of this season; the charge they create together is, like an explosive device, indiscriminately destructive.
"Homeland's" success lies not just in the big gestures but in the telling details. And there's nothing about the two episodes I've seen that makes me think the second season won't be as addictive as the first.
Three notes: I posted a two-part interview with "Homeland" executive producer Alex Gansa in July here and here (the second part of the interview goes into some details about where things stand when Season 2 returns, but you'll get a warning before that section). Also, Ryan McGee and I discussed "Homeland" (and "Last Resort" and "Call the Midwife") in the Talking TV podcast embedded below. More Fall TV podcasts can be found on here and on iTunes. Finally, the first 20 minutes of "homeland" Season 2 can be viewed here.
OK, back to your initial Fara comment, before I forget. I think what we might have here is Saul's new Carrie, despite their head(scarf)-butting. He has a new, intelligent, volatile protegee, and if/when Carrie comes back to the CIA, the jealousy might just drive her crazier. Meaning more Emmy-fodder but also more of a season that already seems bent on dragging poor Carrie through hell.
But I'm not sure it's Peter so much suddenly holding Carrie in greater esteem as that he now holds the CIA and his work in lower esteem, now that he has killed a child in the line of duty. Maybe the operation humanized him a bit, meaning that he does things like talk back to Saul and threaten bankers. Perhaps aside from this being the season of coping with terrible things, like you said, this is also the season of going rogue (Peter, Dana, Carrie).
There is a point in Homelands second season (between Danas hit-and-run and double agents becoming triple/quadruple) where this ceases to be a slow-burning espionage thriller and turns into a silly season of 24. Still, there are enough great moments (a murder in the woods, Brodys interrogation) to keep your interest. For now.
Stiehm, who was one of the original writers on the Showtime drama, left after Season 2 to run The Bridge with Elwood Reid. But she will now depart the FX drama after striking a deal with Homeland producer Fox 21 to return for Homeland's fourth season and its fifth, pending an order from Showtime. Stiehm's deal also includes a development component.
The final season will open with Carrie, played by Claire Danes, recovering physically and mentally from her imprisonment in a Russian gulag. She's enlisted to help co-star Mandy Patinkin's Saul in a bid for peace in Afghanistan.
Homeland Security Presidential Directive/HSPD-9Subject: Defense of United States Agriculture and FoodJanuary 30, 2004 Purpose (1) This directive establishes a national policy to defend theagriculture and food system against terrorist attacks, major disasters,and other emergencies. Background (2) The United States agriculture and food systems are vulnerableto disease, pest, or poisonous agents that occur naturally, areunintentionally introduced, or are intentionally delivered by acts ofterrorism. Americas agriculture and food system is an extensive, open,interconnected, diverse, and complex structure providing potentialtargets for terrorist attacks. We should provide the best protectionpossible against a successful attack on the United States agricultureand food system, which could have catastrophic health and economiceffects. Definitions (3) In this directive: (a) The term critical infrastructure has the meaning given tothat term in section 1016(e) of the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001 (42 U.S.C. 5195c(e)). (b) The term key resources has the meaning given that term in section 2(9) of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 101(9)). (c) The term Federal departments and agencies means thoseexecutive departments enumerated in 5 U.S.C. 101, and the Department of Homeland Security; indepen-dent establishments as defined by 5 U.S.C. 104(1); Government corporations as defined by 5 U.S.C. 103(1); and the United States Postal Service. (d) The terms State, and local government, when used in a geographical sense, have the same meanings given to those terms in section 2 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 101). (e) The term Sector-Specific Agency means a Federal department or agency responsible for infrastructure protection activities in a designated critical infrastructure sector or key resources category. Policy (4) It is the policy of the United States to protect theagriculture and food system from terrorist attacks, major disasters,and other emergencies by: (a) identifying and prioritizing sector-critical infrastructure and key resources for establishing protection requirements; (b) developing awareness and early warning capabilities to recognize threats; (c) mitigating vulnerabilities at critical production and processing nodes; (d) enhancing screening procedures for domestic and imported products; and (e) enhancing response and recovery procedures. (5) In implementing this directive, Federal departments andagencies will ensure that homeland security programs do not diminishthe overall economic security of the United States. Roles and Responsibilities (6) As established in Homeland Security Presidential Directive-7(HSPD-7), the Secretary of Homeland Security is responsible forcoordinating the overall national effort to enhance the protection ofthe critical infrastructure and key resources of the United States.The Secretary of Homeland Security shall serve as the principal Federalofficial to lead, integrate, and coordinate implementation of effortsamong Federal departments and agencies, State and local governments,and the private sector to protect critical infrastructure and keyresources. This directive shall be implemented in a manner consistentwith HSPD-7. (7) The Secretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, andthe Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency will performtheir responsibilities as Sector-Specific Agencies as delineated inHSPD-7. Awareness and Warning (8) The Secretaries of the Interior, Agriculture, Health and HumanServices, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, andthe heads of other appropriate Federal departments and agencies shallbuild upon and expand current monitoring and surveillance programs to: (a) develop robust, comprehensive, and fully coordinated surveillance and monitoring systems, including international information, for animal disease, plant disease, wildlife disease, food, public health, and water quality that provides early detection and awareness of disease, pest, or poisonous agents; (b) develop systems that, as appropriate, track specific animals and plants, as well as specific commodities and food; and (c) develop nationwide laboratory networks for food, veterinary, plant health, and water quality that integrate existing Federal and State laboratory resources, are interconnected, and utilize standardized diagnostic protocols and procedures. (9) The Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security, andthe Director of Central Intelligence, in coordination with theSecretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, and theAdministrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, shall develop andenhance intelligence operations and analysis capabilities focusing onthe agriculture, food, and water sectors. These intelligencecapabilities will include collection and analysis of informationconcerning threats, delivery systems, and methods that could bedirected against these sectors. (10) The Secretary of Homeland Security shall coordinate with theSecretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, and theAdministrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, and the heads ofother appropriate Federal departments and agencies to create a newbiological threat awareness capacity that will enhance detection andcharacterization of an attack. This new capacity will build upon theimproved and upgraded surveillance systems described in paragraph 8 andintegrate and analyze domestic and international surveillance andmonitoring data collected from human health, animal health, planthealth, food, and water quality systems. The Secretary of HomelandSecurity will submit a report to me through the Homeland SecurityCouncil within 90 days of the date of this directive on specificoptions for establishing this capability, including recommendations forits organizational location and structure. Vulnerability Assessments (11) The Secretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, andHomeland Security shall expand and continue vulnerability assessmentsof the agriculture and food sectors. These vulnerability assessmentsshould identify requirements of the National Infrastructure ProtectionPlan developed by the Secretary of Homeland Security, as appropriate,and shall be updated every 2 years. Mitigation Strategies (12) The Secretary of Homeland Security and the Attorney General,working with the Secretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services,the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, the Directorof Central Intelligence, and the heads of other appropriate Federaldepartments and agencies shall prioritize, develop, and implement, asappropriate, mitigation strategies to protect vulnerable critical nodesof production or processing from the introduction of diseases, pests,or poisonous agents. (13) The Secretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, andHomeland Security shall build on existing efforts to expand developmentof common screening and inspection procedures for agriculture and fooditems entering the United States and to maximize effective domesticinspection activities for food items within the United States. Response Planning and Recovery (14) The Secretary of Homeland Security, in coordination with theSecretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, the AttorneyGeneral, and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency,will ensure that the combined Federal, State, and local responsecapabilities are adequate to respond quickly and effectively to aterrorist attack, major disease outbreak, or other disaster affectingthe national agriculture or food infrastructure. These activities willbe integrated with other national homeland security preparednessactivities developed under HSPD-8 on National Preparedness. (15) The Secretary of Homeland Security, in coordination with theSecretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, the AttorneyGeneral, and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency,shall develop a coordinated agriculture and food-specific standardizedresponse plan that will be integrated into the National Response Plan.This plan will ensure a coordinated response to an agriculture or foodincident and will delineate the appropriate roles of Federal, State,local, and private sector partners, and will address risk communicationfor the general public. (16) The Secretaries of Agriculture and Health and Human Services,in coordination with the Secretary of Homeland Security and theAdministrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, shall enhancerecovery systems that are able to stabilize agriculture production, thefood supply, and the economy, rapidly remove and effectively dispose ofcontaminated agriculture and food products or infected plants andanimals, and decontaminate premises. (17) The Secretary of Agriculture shall study and makerecommendations to the Homeland Security Council, within 120 days ofthe date of this directive, for the use of existing, and the creationof new, financial risk management tools encouraging self-protection foragriculture and food enterprises vulnerable to losses due toterrorism. 18) The Secretary of Agriculture, in coordination with theSecretary of Homeland Security, and in consultation with the Secretaryof Health and Human Services and the Administrator of the EnvironmentalProtection Agency, shall work with State and local governments and theprivate sector to develop: (a) A National Veterinary Stockpile (NVS) containing sufficient amounts of animal vaccine, antiviral, or therapeutic products to appropriately respond to the most damaging animal diseases affecting human health and the economy and that will be capable of deployment within 24 hours of an outbreak. The NVS shall leverage where appropriate the mechanisms and infrastructure that have been developed for the management, storage, and distribution of the Strategic National Stockpile. (b) A National Plant Disease Recovery System (NPDRS) capable of responding to a high-consequence plant disease with pest control measures and the use of resistant seed varieties within a single growing season to sustain a reasonable level of production for economically important crops. The NPDRS will utilize the genetic resources contained in the U.S. National Plant Germplasm System, as well as the scientific capabilities of the Federal-State-industry agricultural research and extension system. The NPDRS shall include emergency planning for the use of resistant seed varieties and pesticide control measures to prevent, slow, or stop the spread of a high-consequence plant disease, such as wheat smut or soybean rust. Outreach and Professional Development (19) The Secretary of Homeland Security, in coordination with theSecretaries of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, and the heads ofother appropriate