Claire Danes, Damian Lewis
When Homeland returns to Showtime for its third season, there is likely to be one question on viewers minds: Where is Brody?

When viewers last tuned in, Brody (Damian Lewis) was on the run after having been framed (or was he?) for an attack that killed hundreds at a CIA memorial for the vice president. He was able to escape across the border, thanks to his lover/CIA handler Carrie (Claire Danes), and as such, Brody is notably absent from at least the first two episodes of Season 3.

Homeland Season 3 teaser: Where is Brody?

So where is he? And how are Carrie and Saul (Mandy Patinkin) coping in the aftermath of the CIA attack? Read on for some spoilers on the new season:

1. Brody is on the lam. Why would producers keep their Emmy-winning leading man on the sidelines? "It was strictly a function of the story and where the story was taking us," executive producer Alex Gansa told reporters at the Television Critics Association's fall TV previews. "There is so much transpiring on the ground in Washington that Brody's flight from America made it impossible to include that story line in the first couple of episodes." So, what has he been doing?  "He's disappeared into a network, a tunnel system, an exfiltration system that Carrie has affected," Lewis said. "He's the most-wanted criminal in the world at this point. He has to lay low. When you do see Brody, hopefully what will be of interest to the audience is: What state will he be in? Is he hidden away securely somewhere or is he lost?"

2. Carrie is once again off her meds. Perhaps reacting to losing Brody, as well as the idea that she was unable to prevent another attack on American soil, Carrie is trying a new treatment plan to deal with her mental illness. "Carrie is always sitting on her own personal ticking bomb," Danes said. "It's an impossible dilemma because she's not great on the meds and she's even worse off of them. But there's a really great sweet spot in the middle of those two states that she's always trying to land on, where she's incredibly high-performing." Suffice it to say, she won't land in that spot for a while. "Carrie has been in isolation for a big chunk of the season," Danes said.

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3. The CIA is still under attack, metaphorically speaking. After having been physically attacked by the bomb in Brody's car, the new season will feature Saul, Carrie and others answering for their actions in a very public forum. "Certainly one of the themes of Season 3 is the cost that being an intelligence officer exacts on the people who are in that career," Gansa said. "As a result of the attack, the CIA itself is on trial. If the agency couldn't protect itself, how could it protect the country?"

4. That pressure will get to Saul in a big way. "Saul finds himself in a unique position for the first time in his life," Gansa said. "He's sitting in the director's chair. He's been comfortable on the sidelines for 20 years, criticizing and making suggestions. All of the sudden, he finds himself having to make decisions, and he has to make some very uncharacteristic choices he isn't used to making. One of them has direct bearing on his protégé Carrie Mathison."

5. As a result, Saul and Carrie are on the outs. Let's just say, Saul is forced to take an action that Carrie feels is a betrayal. But don't lose hope that they can reconcile. "She does feel a certain level of betrayal," Danes said. "But they share an enormous and profound amount of guilt and responsibility for this bomb and this loss. Even though they are estranged from each other, they are very deeply connected. They experienced that trauma in a way that no one else has."

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6. Carrie and Quinn may get closer.
Despite getting off to a rocky start in Season 2, Carrie and Quinn (Rupert Friend) could find some common ground this year. "There's a mutual respect for someone who takes personal risks for their job," Friend says of his character's thawing toward Carrie. "They're both edgy and go to extremes to get the work done.

7. Even without Brody, there is still plenty of Brody's family. Although Gansa questioned whether there would be interest in seeing Brody's family, events like the Sandy Hook shooting and Boston Marathon bombing convinced him that it was a necessary story to tell. "We felt we had to honor those people we created," Gansa said. "These families always get paraded in front of the cameras. ... What would their lives be like after this devastating attack and after their father and husband was accused of being the guy who did it?"

8. The show will again go international. Gansa said that many scenes have been shot in Puerto Rico, and he expects the production to return to Israel to shoot the last couple of episodes of Season 3.

Homeland premieres its third season on Sunday, Sept. 29 at 9/8c on Showtime.

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