Our Favorite Homeland Theories So Far

Photo: Courtesy of Showtime.
Homeland is known for giving its viewers a lot to think about.
Sometimes I lay awake at night wondering if I would have the balls to do what Carrie Mathison does: "Did I miss my calling as an overseas CIA operative?""(Probably not.)
Other times I contemplate Saul Berenson's eyebrows (so lush, so expressive), and whether Peter Quinn's abs or jawline are better chiseled. (It's a tie.)
But in all seriousness, it's a mighty challenge to predict what the hell is going to happen next on the twisty thriller starring Claire Danes, Mandy Patinkin, and Rupert Friend.
What makes Homeland an especially interesting show to theorize about is its history of deriving key themes and plot-points from the headlines. And this season's focus on domestic counter-terrorism — it's successes and failures — couldn't be more prescient.
Season six of Homeland brings us back to Washington, D.C. and New York City, where 9/11 incited the War on Terror that we're still fighting today — overseas and at home. Zeroing in on the latter front means examining both sides of the same coin: The law enforcement agencies battling homegrown radical terrorists to protect our country, and — in a fascinating move for the show — the resulting desecration of the very civil liberties our country is supposed to hold sacred. Oh, and they still somehow managed to elect a female president.
Homeland premieres on Showtime on January 15. Check back here every Monday, where we'll be adding new theories about the next episode and the season as a whole. Feel free to share your predictions in the comments below!
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Peter Will Kill Dar

Every episode this season, we (and Peter, and Carrie) all realize that Quinn is not losing his mind. His ostensible paranoia is actually justified. That mystery man was spying on Carrie, did plant the bomb, did kill the FBI ally, and did just kill Astrid. Our theory? Peter will realize that this mystery man is working for Dar, and he'll use all that nervous energy (and leftover spy genius) to kill his former mentor and abuser.
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Dar Sent The Recording To Carrie

We know that a third-party sent the tape, between Conlin and his informant, that would lead to Sekou's release. Who else had more to gain from his release (and staging what looked like a suicide bomb) than Dal? By setting up Sekou, Conlin, and Carrie, Dal could delegitamize President-elect Keane's views on counter-terrorism, make Keane suspicious of Carrie's judgement (for releasing her client), and further his own extreme counter-terrorism agenda without giving it away.
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Carrie Will Be Accused Of Murdering Conlin

Carrie and FBI Agent Conlin were just starting to find common ground with each other when she found him dead. While we know that the mysterious neighbor (who also planted the bomb in Sekou's van) did it, that's probably not what it will look like to authorities. Carrie's fingerprints are on the gate, and could be elsewhere. Plus, the outside appearance of the relationship between Carrie and Conlin is that they're enemies.
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Astrid Is Here To Protect Quinn

Or kill him. Unclear — the mysterious Astrid seems to be a good, rational person who cares about Quinn, but her loyalties were never black-and-white. Is she here on Dar's behalf, to kill Peter Quinn, who knows too much about his plan? Or is she there to save Quinn? How did she even know where he was? So many questions!
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
Dar Is The Puppetmaster

The latest episode made clear that Dar is pulling the strings here, at least when it comes to setting up the president-elect. Everything he did in Sunday night’s episode — isolating the president, cutting off her communications, keeping her in the dark — helped render her powerless in the situation. Dar also seemed displeased when he learned that Saul concluded that the Iranians are not in fact cheating on the nuclear deal.

Those facts and the possibility that he arranged Sekou's car bombing make it look like he is trying to discredit Keane (and her foreign policy) before she even takes office.

He's also indicated in the past that he is almost eager to war with Iran, something Keane is keen to avoid. Could this whole scenario be constructed to that end?
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
Latisha Is A Spy

This one's a little bit out of left field. But sorry, there's something fishy about Frannie's babysitter (and her boyfriend). She's just so nice. It's too simple! And it's classic Homeland to reveal late in the game that somebody's been working for the other side. A babysitter plant inside Carrie's home? Brilliant.
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
Agent Conlin Is Not Clued In

Conlin is upset, obviously, when it looks like the guy he was forced to let go thanks to Carrie's blackmailing is involved in an incident that looks like a suicide bombing. I think he believes he's in on everything going on as far as the FBI's shady operations, but that there's a lot going on over his head that basically makes him a pawn in the larger plot. He's been set up too.
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
Quinn Is Going To Endanger Frannie

We won't lie: having the unstable Quinn living in Carrie's garden apartment, in such close proximity to her young daughter, makes us more than a little nervous. Quinn is suffering from PTSD and hallucinations that appear to be a symptom of that and/or withdrawal. So far this season he's acted paranoid (understandably so), volatile, and, at times, violent. He also hasn't lived in a family setting or had to worry about other people's well-being (as opposed to literally just his own survival) for years. The possibility that he could do something that unintentionally puts Carrie or her child in danger seems likely.
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
Carrie Harbors Guilt That Will Cloud Her Judgement

Carrie has done a lot of terrible things in the name of national security. Particularly hard on her was being responsible for the deaths of young men who weren't fully radicalized (if not innocent). In season 4, she emotionally manipulated terrorist Haqqani's naïve nephew Aayan. Last season, she sent Qasim to die at Bibi's hand right when it seemed like he was open to redemption. Could her guilty conscience cause her to presume that her new client, Sekou Bah, is innocent?
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
President-elect Keane & Dar Will Form An Alliance

Dar Adal has always been one of the shadiest characters on Homeland. His loyalty seems to lie with whomever is the most powerful at any given time. We've already seen him shut out Saul from a national security meeting, so he has no qualms betraying his oldest friend. And as an intelligence insider, the wily Dar could prove useful to Keane for bringing down the CIA from the inside.
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We're going to get some Brody flashbacks.

Now that Carrie is back on American soil, grappling with the at-home consequences of the War on Terror — on heroes like Quinn as well as innocent Muslims — she will likely be reminded of her lost love, another traumatized vet and a man who empathized with the perceived enemy. Plus, she'll be raising Frannie, who's now old enough to ask questions about her dad. Having Brody figure into Carrie's emotional arc this season would be a nice way to bring things full circle.
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
Otto Is Still In Love With Carrie

Remember that time last season that Otto Düring basically told Carrie he wants to make a life with someone, that someone hopefully being her? The ambitious, smooth-talking billionaire German philanthropist is back in Carrie's life after she rejected him. He apparently dropped by New York to let her know that he's seeing someone, perhaps in an attempt to get her to change her mind because the guy for sure still has feelings for her. Otto also appears to be trying to seduce Carrie with the allure of bigger and better humanitarian work. (Works like a charm, I hear.)
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Madam President = Trump's unpredictability + Hillary's secretiveness

Showrunners explained that they "hedged their bets" in creating the controversial new President-elect Elizabeth Keane, played by
House of Cards' Elizabeth Marvel. While we we don't know much about her character, she doesn't seem like she's out to please anyone — Saul, the CIA, the American people, and certainly not Carrie Mathison. Is she behind the push to target Muslim communities?
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
It's going to be Carrie vs. Saul again.

At the end of last season, Saul offered Carrie a job at the CIA with full autonomy; she declined. Now, newly Brooklynite Carrie is working at a foundation that gives legal aid to Muslims unfairly targeted by the law, who she sees as another casualty of the War on Terror. No doubt we're going to see the two butt heads over where national security begins to undermine the civil liberty protections of Carrie's clients.
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Photo: Jo Jo Whilden/Courtesy of Showtime.
President-elect Keane's Personal Tragedy Will Blind Her

We've learned that Keane's son died fighting overseas. It's likely that her animosity towards the CIA is rooted in her grief — and anger at the institutions whose faulty intelligence and questionable tactics could have contributed to his death.
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Photo: Courtesy of Showtime.
Quinn is going to be in a wheelchair.

We're just happy to know Quinn is still alive (after all, last we saw him Carrie was putting his pulse monitor on her own finger, seemingly about to put her comatose colleague out of his misery, per his request in a confessional letter he left her).

But Rupert Friend has said that his character is going to be "unrecognizable" to audiences. Given his near-death experience, we imagine Quinn will be at least partially paralyzed, perhaps with impaired cognitive function, debilitating depression, or, like many vets, an addiction to painkillers.
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