The genius of HBO’s Homeland has always been the spy drama’s ability to keep up with the times. Nowhere has that been more evident than in Season 7, with the Russians determined to undermine American democracy and depose the president. Under the Trump presidency, the degree to which the Russians meddled in the 2016 elections is being heatedly debated and investigated.

In the season finale, “Paean to the People,” the Russian plot is finally unraveled, but not before significant damage to the government. A pivotal congressional witness Simone Martin – an agent of Russian Intelligence – is captured in Moscow thanks to Carrie and Saul’s operation. But back stateside, President Keane has already been removed from office under the 25th Amendment. The country is in a state of chaos and the government is bitterly divided. Score 1 for the Russians.

HOMELAND Kata Vermes Showtime

However, Saul manages to get Simone back to the U.S. and in front of congress to expose the Russian plot, clearing President Keane of wrongdoing and returning her to the Oval Office. But for the good of the country, President Keane resigns believing the deep divisions that exist cannot be bridged if she remains at the head of government.

Meanwhile in Moscow, after creating a diversion that allowed Saul to leave the country with Simone, Carrie languishes in a cold, damp prison under Yevgeny’s diabolical thumb. Her bipolar meds are taken away from her and by the time a prisoner exchange takes place months later, Carrie has lost her mind, trading in her sanity to save the country she loves.

While democracy prevails in the end, Carrie pays a very high price, setting up her battle back to health and strength in Season 8 so that she can fight another day. Claire Danes as Carrie and Mandy Patinkin as Saul continue to be a formidable force, anchoring a series that mirrors the precarious times in which we live.


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