(Although I tried to refrain from spoilers, the review might include some light ones.)
Homeland debuted its sophomore season last night with an episode titled simply "The Smile". The premiere takes place several months after the first season, which left Nicholas Brody (Damian Lewis) still alive, loose, and set for political stardom while Carrie Mathison's (Claire Danes) life was in shambles. Carrie had been unable to prove Brody's connection to terrorist Abu Nazir and, after a severe mental breakdown, was institutionalized and set for electroshock therapy. Brody, on the other hand, was persuaded from his terrorist attack against Vice-president Walden (Jamey Sheridan) by his daughter Dana, albeit unknowingly to her. After that, he persuaded his boss Abu Nazir that he could serve his purpose better with his political position.
The episode was pretty good. It had some worthy moments. Nazir's request of Brody (to snatch a folder from a safe) seemed too simple for his reach, but perhaps it was a way to test him first. Plus, the scene where he does it is pretty tense. A scene I really liked was the one at Dana's school, mostly because I know that a lot of people have the same closed-minded point of view of Dana's schoolmates. The generalizations, the broad blanket statements, talking without really knowing or understanding anything; that's the kind of things that lead to the problems that our society has right now. I also liked her final scene with Brody, and I can already see where this is leading with her. We'll see.
So, to sum it all up, the episode was a pretty good premiere with some great acting and a nice set-up for the season. All of the cast was in top shape, and I can't wait to see what's next. Grade: A-
(All pictures belong to Showtime and its affiliates)