Over the past ten years or so I’ve read a number of articles, and in most cases agreed, that Showtime has a habit of keeping shown on past their prime, sometimes well past. Now I may not be the best person to posit this theory because the Showtime shows that I enjoy in general are few and far between. However Homeland is one show that I will rise to defend.
Homeland would have been an excellent mini-series if there had been only one season. Even the first two seasons combined would have still made for a strong showing. But life isn’t about strong showings and ever escalating violence. Life is a series of ups and downs, and to borrow from another excellent show, Low Winter Sun, morality is perhaps at best a flashing strobe light. These are the issues that Homeland chose to confront in its inexorable television march forward.
Homeland never did quite recapture the glory of its first two seasons but it’s writers and producers chose not to fade into obscurity either. Any casual viewer can find relations to modern day events within its themes. If people tuned out Homeland it was because it was indeed too relevant. Its themes strike just a little too close to home and remind us of the very flawed and very real world that we live in.
If I had to compare another show on TV to Homeland it might be Mr. Robot. The difference is that Mr. Robot was so wild and fantastical that it becomes exactly that – a work of fantasy. Homeland chose to stay in the real world. In the real world things don’t stop once the more exciting bits are over. Life keeps going. Vigilance against evil requires it to be a part of a national conversation. It deserves that.