If anyone is keeping track, placing Homeland episode 5.04, Why Is This Night Different?, on Passover means it’s the spring—if we are to believe it’s the near future, it’s April 22 or 23, 2016. I’ve been to over fifty Passover Seders in my life. Passover is the story of the Jews escaping slavery and fleeing to freedom. Messages of the night are about freedom, for the Jews and for all people, and about a homeland, a place of safety. The message in the Israeli ambassador’s home (his name is Üter, according to the credits), about overthrowing your oppressors and being willing to fight, are not the messages of Passover, and are meant instead to reveal his character.
He is willing to fight for his country, and he has no concern if Arabs are killed. Does that mean he is responsible for the spectacular explosion in the sky that Why Is This Night Different? ended with? (Well, that was different from other nights, for sure.) Or is Station Chief Eowyn, who seemed completely unperturbed by the development? Or perhaps they were working together. Or I could just be wrong.
Except I wasn’t wrong about who put the kill order on Carrie. I’m glad she was revealed this episode, as it seemed so obvious to me, I didn’t want to tolerate “suspense” about something I knew. It was also obvious that Korzenik had switched the thumb drives (the data for the bird-flipper), so, again, I’m glad that was revealed and resolved. I don’t feel at all sorry for Korzenik; there’s a bit of comeuppance for his arrogant sneering at “freedom”, and his belief that he can be a big man in the espionage game with no consequence. I do feel for his poor girlfriend, who did nothing but go home at the wrong time and get brutally murdered. Russian spies are meanies.
One thing I never guessed, though, was that Eowyn would put a kill order on Quinn as well, and I’m not sure I understand it. One idea is that she doesn’t trust him with the information that Carrie is on “Saul’s” kill list, so he has to be eliminated. If that’s the case, though, if she thinks he’s compromised where Carrie is concerned, why does she trust him to go ahead and kill her? And on the other hand, if she does trust him to follow orders, why does he have to be killed? Doesn’t going after him reveal her hand if things go wrong? Pro-tip: Yes it does, and we saw that in the episode.
It is no longer possible to believe that Saul and Carrie are in any way in cahoots on this—at least not on this part of it. They are not playing Station Chief Eowyn in order to get evidence on her or something like that. Carrie’s video to Franny was incredibly moving, and if that turns out to be fake by the end of the season, Homeland and I have broken up. Saul’s reaction when he saw the plane explode was pure shock, and there was no one looking at him.
That doesn’t mean that Saul doesn’t know some of it. Clearly not all of it. He told Eowyn previously that he was angrier that her play against him failed than that she went for it. He’s the spymaster, after all, he’s not going to hate on her for being one too. Which means, he could be sleeping with her out of genuine affection and regard while still knowing that she’s screwing him behind his back. Would that go as far as knowing that she put Carrie on a kill list? I don’t think so. Eowyn said in no uncertain terms that she’s jealous of how Saul protects Carrie, and I think she has reason to believe that. In fact, I think she’s right; he would not willingly allow Carrie to be murdered in order to let Eowyn twist in the wind.
So, Saul almost certainly knows that his redheaded girlfriend is betraying him, but he doesn’t know that she’s tried to have Carrie killed. He doesn’t know who blew up the plane—but if Redhead didn’t conspire to do it, I think she knows who did. Carrie genuinely is on the run, and so is Quinn—I don’t believe any of that is fake. And by the way, now we know that this is the first time Carrie knows what became of Quinn when he took off right after her father’s funeral and his declaration of undying love. I’m still mad at him for that.
So, broad strokes, we know a lot, and there’s new mystery to explore. We still don’t know the full story behind Angry American Journalist—she could be exactly what she seems on the surface, but maybe not. Something about the way she told Jonas that Otto should fire Carrie suggests otherwise. And we don’t know if Otto is a filthy rich humanitarian, or something more sinister.
FOUR EPISODES, people, and it still hasn’t pissed me off! This is a great season!