Claire Danes On Homeland's Most Polarizing Moment

Warning: Spoilers for the most recent season of Homeland follow.

Anyone who watches Homeland can recall exactly how they felt when Claire Danes' manic character considers drowning her own baby last season. One of the most polarizing scenes from the show, it was undoubtedly hard for viewers to watch. But, the controversial moment was even more of a challenge for Danes.

“I’m a recent mom myself,” Danes said, who talked about the shocking scene at PaleyFest in Los Angeles this weekend. So, why did she agree to do it? “There are very few representations of motherhood that are...controversial on television.” So, Danes realized, and seized, the opportunity to spread awareness on this relatively unexplored issue: the taboo of a mother snapping.

Photo: Courtesy of Showtime.
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"I was excited to start the conversation," Danes said about the controversial topic, noting that — although difficult to talk about — it is an issue that deserves to be brought up.  "I don’t know if there is a greater taboo than an unloving mother.”

Faced with the fear that Danes' character Carrie may not remain sympathetic, she discussed the balance of walking such an emotional high wire. “She has to remain a hero…[Despite being] perverse in a lot of ways and subversive, and morally questionable.”

To pull off the envelope-pushing endeavors, Danes places her complete trust in the show’s creative team. “These writers are pretty incredible, so I wouldn’t presume to interfere with their process,” she said. “I know they’re going to kick the shit out of me every season. That’s the deal.”

Homeland season five premieres the last weekend of September and promises to find our heroine with more hardships still — though perhaps in a different way than we’d expect. (Spoiler alert!)

“Carrie will no longer be an intelligence officer,” executive producer Alex Gansa revealed to a theater full of interjections at PaleyFest. So…what will she be doing? We are counting down the days to see!
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