Homeland has dropped a number of twists this season, but one of its most recent could potentially strike acting CIA director Saul Berenson very close to home.
Just as Saul (Mandy Patinkin) seemed to be putting back together his marriage with Mira (Sarita Choudhury), the show threw us a curveball. After Mira broke things off with her former lover Alain Bernard (William Abadie), he broke into Saul and Mira's house and planted a bug on their computer. So, is Alain a spy who is using Mira to get intel on Saul's operation or just an obsessed scorned lover? Sunday's episode (9/8c, Showtime) holds the answer.
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And she does decide to break things off with Alain.
Choudhury: It would be hard to try and love Saul and be with another man. When Saul said, "You know what? I was wrong. This does affect me," I think that was enough for her to be like, "Thank you. I am breaking it off." She just needed to know it affected him on any level that she exists and that he would fight for her. That's what she needed to know.
But then of course we find out that Alain has a secret. Is he a spy or just obsessed with Mira?
Choudhury: I can't talk about it, but I can say that is exactly the question they want the audience to be thinking about.
Hypothetically, if he were a spy, how would Mira feel about being used as a pawn?
Choudhury: Mira would probably think, "Fair game." I've been used, and I used. Because she's fully in love with Saul, and on some level she used Alain. I don't think her ego would be hit.
But in the same way that the affair was a betrayal, this could also lead to a huge professional betrayal.
Choudhury: You're right. That is huge. But because it's not something she willfully did, Saul wouldn't blame her. Although it was careless.
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Because Saul has to keep so many secrets, does Mira ever feel like she's genuinely close to Saul?
Choudhury: I think she signed up for it, and she knows it. I think the difference is in the early part of their marriage, they would have fun with intellectual or philosophical ideas. Now, the job itself is so much, what she's fighting for [is,] "You don't have to tell me about your job, but you do have to be present."
Alex has said he wanted this season to be about the cost of intelligence work on the people who do it. What is the cost or impact for Mira as the wife of someone like Saul?
Choudhury: With Homeland, you never know what your story's going to end up being. So I always end up creating a few lies in my head for her that probably will never come to fruition because I know deep in my soul this woman is not a housewife. I think being married to someone like Saul, you have to want that life. She would not be happy with someone who just came home every night. And that's the bigger truth: the same things she gets upset about, she actually fell in love with. It's that double-edged sword.
It seems like Saul has a ticking clock on his time at the CIA.
Choudhury: And I think she might know it more than him, you know? Because he plays everything so fully, he's not thinking of whether this is the end of a career or what he's going to do next. I think she actually is thinking about that for him a little more.
Does Mira hope that perhaps Saul will realize he can step away? Perhaps this relationship can rescue him?
Choudhury: Wow, that would be so beautiful. I think it's going to be part of it. Even in the scene, him making breakfast and just having normal moments at home, I think that's what the hope is. But with Saul you never know. It's kind of unpredictable what he's been doing this season.
Homeland airs Sunday at 9/8c on Showtime.
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