Homeland returns to UK TV screens on Sunday night, following the first season which was a huge success on both sides of the Atlantic. The US thriller, starring Damien Lewis as a former POW turned potential politician/terrorist/deer-killer, and Clare Danes as potential saviour/psychopath/pill-popper, won big at the recent Emmy's, and now looks to build on its success. The first season was a fantastic web of sustained intrigue, pulsating thrills and heart-stopping tension, with stunning performances from the leading figures, as both the CIA and the viewer are led on a chase of an unknown enemy, where nobody can be trusted. With Season 2 already having kicked off in the States, the UK will now be treated to the return of President Obama's favourite TV show, and here are five reasons to get excited.
1. The Finale of Season 1
In the dramatic finale to the first Season, Carrie had been exiled from Langley; Brody, and his supposedly dead counterpart Tom Walker, are in preparations for a strike at the heart of the US government; and Saul is caught between helping Carrie and keeping an eye on national security. Eventually Brody is talked out of his attack by his daughter Dana, albeit without knowing she is, in one of the most compelling scenes of the series. But the final five minutes of Season 1 were what so brilliantly set up Season 2. There was always the fear that once it became clear who Brody truly was - American hero or underground terrorist - that the whole point of Homeland would have reached a conclusion, leaving the show with nowhere to go. But those last five minutes flipped the entire series on its head. Brody convinces Abu Nazir, the character's elusive but supposedly lethal antagonist, that by taking up a position in Government he can do more damage than a bomb ever could, opening up a whole new horizon for his character development, and still leaving the viewer questioning his motives. Meanwhile Carrie finally relents to electroshock treatment to tackle her bi-polar condition, motivated as much by her love for Brody as her pain at losing her job. However, in the most brilliantly frustrating moment of television, right before her brain and her brilliance is zapped away, she whispers the name she once heard Brody say in his sleep: Isa. Isa is the name off Abu Nazir's son, who was killed by an American drone attack, and the emotional motivation for Brody's apparent treachery. It is a key clue in Carrie's fixation on uncovering Brody, but the tantalisingly close memory surfaces just seconds before it is perhaps blasted from her mind for good. Will Carrie remember the name post electroshock? If she does will it lead her to Brody's true intentions? And what actually are Brody's intentions now he is climbing the political ladder? These are just some of the questions I am sure Season 2 will so enjoy toying with.