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Seth Numrich (#110 of 3)

Homeland Recap Season 6, Episode 9, "Sock Puppets"

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Homeland Recap: Season 6, Episode 9, “Sock Puppets”

JoJo Whilden/Showtime

Homeland Recap: Season 6, Episode 9, “Sock Puppets”

The real world is filled with differing ideas, opinions, and agendas, and to someone who wishes to control that world, this can be frustratingly inconvenient. Just look at how cheerful the usually gloomy Dar Adal (F. Murray Abraham) seems in the latest episode of Homeland, “Sock Puppets,” as he’s called into a meeting with President-elect Elizabeth Keane (Elizabeth Marvel), a former adversary who seems far more amenable to the man’s policy proposals now that she’s been fed false intelligence about the Iranians. Dar practically glows as he stops by the hotel room of Majid Javadi (Shaun Toub), the Iranian defector who lied to Keane at Dar’s behest, so much so that Javadi even calls him out on it. Dar’s downfall—and perhaps Homeland’s—is in the way “Sock Puppets” sacrifices character development for the sake of scoring a few more points in that game, insisting on the accuracy of a single viewpoint instead of the ambiguity of differently motivated agents.

Homeland Recap Season 6, Episode 6, "The Return"

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Homeland Recap: Season 6, Episode 6, “The Return”

Showtime

Homeland Recap: Season 6, Episode 6, “The Return”

The first words spoken in the opening credits for Homeland’s sixth season are from Gil Scott-Heron’s 1970 song “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”: “The first revolution is when you change your mind about how you look at things and see that there might be another way to look at it that you have not been shown.” This is the central conceit of tonight’s episode, “The Return,” in which almost every protagonist challenges the convenient narratives being fed to them and comes to accept a new and radical point of view.

Blind at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater

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<em>Blind</em> at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater
<em>Blind</em> at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater

Last season, Craig Wright wrote a beautiful paean to male bonding called Lady, a sincere, stirring one-acter that chronicled three men (magnificently played by Michael Shannon, Paul Sparks, and David Wilson Barnes) on a hunting trip, whose disparate politics and beliefs eventually get the better of them. I guess it was too much to hope that lightning would strike twice in two seasons in the very same space, but it shouldn’t have been too much to ask for a play where people spoke to each other instead of hollered like they were trying to hit the back row of Radio City Music Hall. Wright’s latest play Blind uses Oedipus as a model to, one supposes, update the tale (though having a guy in a t-shirt and people saying “fuck” doesn’t constitute a hell of a lot of updating) of the unhappy queen Jocasta (Veanne Cox) having a most unusual sexual life with Oedipus (Seth Numrich), her son who broods more than Holden Caulfield stuck in a room of malcontents. And a deadpan Maid (Danielle Slavick) is on standby to witness their heinous acts, while secretly shtupping the handsome young king.