The bombing in New York rattles the city — and follows Carrie home.
Carrie’s never been good at separating her personal and professional lives — Franny is arguably a product of that — but this hour may be the closest brush she’s had yet with her work following her home. And as much as she takes the blame for leaving Quinn at home with Franny, she couldn’t possibly have known how quickly things would escalate around her
tiny tony (this typo got the better of me — I envy Carrie’s place like crazy, even if I don’t envy what happened to it this week) brownstone.
In fact, Carrie’s oddly centered during this hour while everyone around her reacts with panic or fear. Conlin screams into her face, Reda (who, commenters last week rightly pointed out, only helped Sekou get his old job back) chides Carrie for even thinking about sending Franny to school, and Keane frantically tries to retain control. She’s the antithesis to the rage-fueled radio show host — the program’s called “Real. Truth” and has shades of Rush Limbaugh — Quinn listened to only a few episodes ago.
The hour opens with that show, as the host blames Keane for turning a blind eye to terrorism. He emphasizes how the terrorist threat is not over and has never been over, and “if you are that stupid” to believe it is, “what do you get? Boom!” He’s angry — and much of America is, too.
For now, Keane can’t let that anger take over. She’s quickly ushered into a helicopter and transported away from the city to a safe house, but she’s unable to bring her staff along, leaving her separated from her trusted chief of staff Rob, who’s been with her in every meeting. At the safe house, she asks for a TV and access to her staff, but all anyone can offer her is Marjorie, who’s happy to fetch her tea and snacks and whatever she’d like to bide her time.
Obviously, biding her time isn’t at the top of Keane’s to-do list, so when Dar Adal arrives on the safe house’s doorstep, she’s thrilled to finally hear some news — even if it’s not great news. He gives her a phone that’ll allow her to talk to the White House at the very least, and then briefs her about, as he puts it, “a few unfortunate facts.”
F. Murray Abraham and Elizabeth Marvel then give a master class in acting cagey: He reports that the bomber, Sekou, had been in custody, slowly divulging the information about Sekou being defended by a non-profit in Brooklyn that got his case thrown out on procedural grounds. He watches her, hoping for a reaction; she watches him, without betraying a thing. He continues, saying that Carrie — who he slyly explains is “one of our former officers” — was involved, but Keane doesn’t blink an eye.
Dar instead decides to push his narrative of the situation: He tells Keane that the bombing happened just 20 blocks away from her hotel, sowing seeds of doubt in Keane about whether her life was in danger that morning. Keane responds by asking once more for a TV, then lets Dar leave as he head to meet Saul when he arrives from Tel Aviv.
Carrie also has a rough morning. Franny and Quinn watch the news about the bombing, and Franny has more questions about it than Carrie would like — and when Reda calls to tell Carrie that Sekou was the one in the van (security camera footage proved Sekou was driving), Carrie’s forced to ask Quinn to look after Franny for at least 45 minutes before Franny’s babysitter, Latisha, arrives. Quinn assures her he can, but he’s already thinking steps ahead about what’s truly happening: While he was watching the news, he noticed the Medina logo on the exploded truck, the same one he photographed the night he tailed the man from across the street.
Carrie heads to Sekou’s apartment, where she hugs his sobbing mother before stopping Conlin from interrogating Simone. Conlin’s too pissed to worry about decorum, or about going to through Carrie to talk to who he wants to talk to: He points out that she’s in deep trouble for helping release a terrorist. He warns that they’ll be looking into her source for that recording of him and Saad, but she counters that she can’t reveal her source’s identity at all. Of course, that’s not what Conlin wanted to hear: “Get out of here, you hear me?” he shouts. “You’re not wanted.”
Rattled, Carrie heads to her source, the man she had approached who could access NSA recordings and provide her with Conlin and Saad’s conversation. As she tries to explain what that recording was about, adding that she still can’t believe that Sekou would do something like this, he starts to freak out. He tells her that he didn’t give her the recording — and though Carrie thinks he’s just saying that in agreement with her to cover this up, he insists that it wasn’t him. After she approached him, he had reported their contact up the chain and didn’t think about it again. The revelation stumps Carrie. If it wasn’t her NSA contact, then who was this third party in the agency who sent her flowers?
She can’t investigate this twist just yet, though: Back in her apartment, events have spun out of control. Journalists have swarmed to Carrie’s doorstep — as the public defender on Sekou’s case, her address is publicly available — and rattled, paranoid Quinn has not only threatened and tossed a female journalist down the front steps but also fired his gun into the crowd of protesters who gathered and threw rocks through Carrie’s window, hitting the hand of the man who began the violence. Latisha arrives shortly before the journalist-tossing incident, and after Quinn takes away Latisha’s phone, saying they’re being watched, he forces her and Franny to hide inside the basement bathroom. He wants to protect them, obviously, but none of this is helping.
Carrie only learns of this after calling Conlin about the third-party mystery at the NSA. Conlin is also surprised by the revelation, but he’s stopped in his tracks not by this new twist but by what he sees on the news: Carrie’s apartment in disarray. He warns her about what’s happening — it’s been deemed a hostage situation — and Carrie rushes home right away.
NEXT: Home is where the hostage situation is…