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Tara Ariano

S04.E04: Iron In The Fire

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Duck! Slimy as ever.

This show is so much more interesting when it's about espionage than when they're talking about who wuvs who. The scene between the Ambassador and her husband was the most interesting one yet this season.

 

Carrie is now the least interesting part of this whole show.  I feel like everything comes to a screeching halt whens she appears.

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Why did Carrie need to seduce Aayan? Ick! Honestly, she's quite a bit older than him and has those crazy eyes....I just don't find her as irresistible as the show portrays her, both in regards to Aayan and Quinn. That tactic was believable with Brody, but she's the Station Chief now. Delegate already!

And more Mark Moses is fine with me. Rowr!

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That was just unbelievable.  Yes Aayan, this "bureau chief" from the London paper is just so enamored with you, she couldn't possibly be playing you.  Even the horniest of young men wouldn't have bought that, and I sure didn't.  STUPID show.

 

 

Why not let Fara play seductive role- I think the audience could buy that....

 

Agreed.  But this is The Carrie Show, isn't it.

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Agreed. But this is The Carrie Show, isn't it.

There won't be a show much longer of they keep this up. Seriously, even my wife screamed "Ick" at the sight of that make out session/borderline rape.

Edited by HollaMcDollar
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Wow! Did that really just happen? Why not let Fara play seductive role- I think the audience could buy that.... I'm trying to get that visual out of my head.

 

I don't see Fara being up for a honeypot mission - especially when it's as ruthless as toying with someone like Aayan.

 

 

New information comes to light; Aayan gets handled.

 

Nicely put.

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The story with the Ambassador's husband being a mole was interesting, but the show completely lost me with Carrie seducing Aayan. I know she has gone there before. The last time was with Brody, but this seduction was unnecessary, totally out of line and completely disgusting. Though Aayan is in college, he's just a kid and Carrie devouring him was just gross.

 

Carrie is now the least interesting part of this whole show.  I feel like everything comes to a screeching halt whens she appears.

 

I so agree with this.

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I don't see Fara being up for a honeypot mission - especially when it's as ruthless as toying with someone like Aayan.

Carrie romantically involved w/ another "is he or isn't he" seems like a desperate attempt at rekindling the Carroe Brody S 1 stuff... I think the shouldve gone w/ Fara and let Carrie oversee it or something... There is a good potential for a story/plot w/ Aayan being the "is he isn't he" (even if it was predictable) but keep Carrie few steps removed this time...I know they won't though.

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Now Carrie is seducing Aayan? the writers of this show are totally off the wall and Carrie is being scripted to be one sick fuck. 

 

Why does she have to be "romantically" involved with every object of every CIA investigation? Wasn't that was ruined seasons 2 and 3?

 

Stick a fork in this show, it is so done. 

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I agree that it should be Fara doing this, although she might not be up to it, and "should" isn't often what drives Carrie.  But I have to say, as uncomfortable as it was watching Carrie seduce Aayan, I think Suraj Sharma is just so handsome (those eyes! those lips!) that I rather enjoyed it.  Oops?  Sorry, not sorry?

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I agree that it should be Fara doing this, although she might not be up to it, and "should" isn't often what drives Carrie.  But I have to say, as uncomfortable as it was watching Carrie seduce Aayan, I think Suraj Sharma is just so handsome (those eyes! those lips!) that I rather enjoyed it.  Oops?  Sorry, not sorry?

I bet the poor actor was creeped out w/ having a woman 15 years his senior mauling him- even if it was acting. There is a rumor in the is that Danes gets a little too in to character at times and is quite intense.

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The second she opened the door and dismissed the guard, and I got the FF handy because it was going to gross me out more than Walking Dead. I knew she was going to seduce him. I just watched Million Dollar Arm and now I can't stop thinking of Aayan as the baseball player kid.

 

I love Quinn and all the others.

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Mad men and midnight's children...Seeing Art Malik's name in the opening credits, I sat forward and wondered if I remembered him well enough to recognize him  30 years (!) later.  But of course: General Bunny was The Jewel in the Crown's Hari Kumar.  

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This may be weird to say, but I got the impression that Aayan was far more turned on and intrigued by Carrie, who's blond, white and not the norm in Islamabad. Fara is gorgeous but he didn't seem so interested. It's like he's used to seeing that look everyday at college, the hospital etc. He even shrugged her off during the first meeting. He is young and seems inexperienced with women, and Carrie knew that play would work. It's just what I picked up on.

Also I don't get what's gross. I hate that she has to do this stuff but he's an adult. It's really no different than what she did with Brody.

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I bet the poor actor was creeped out w/ having a woman 15 years his senior mauling him- even if it was acting. There is a rumor in the is that Danes gets a little too in to character at times and is quite intense.

 

Funny, female actors are paired up with male actors, twenty years older, all the time. Tony Goldwyn is 17 years older than Kerry Washington  and evereone is gaga over their chemistry. No one is grossed out by that and if they are, then they are in the minority.

 

This may be weird to say, but I got the impression that Aayan was far more turned on and intrigued by Carrie, who's blond, white and not the norm in Islamabad.

 

That is exactly the case.

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Also I don't get what's gross. I hate that she has to do this stuff but he's an adult. It's really no different than what she did with Brody.

 

I don't think it's necessarily gross that she's an older woman with a younger man but the situation is hugely different from the one with Brody. Aayan is terrified, isolated, very likely innocent (unlike Brody), a virgin and her actions very recently led to the death of his whole family. So it's a bit of a different dynamic. And just because someone is legally an adult doesn't necessary mean it's ethical to sleep with them. I would feel pretty weird and gross about sleeping with a teenage or very early twenties virgin, even if he was technically legal.

 

Also, I sensed that Carrie had genuine feelings and attraction for Brody, even the first time she slept with him even if it was screwed up and complicated and there was an intelligence-gathering motive as well. This was just pure manipulation.

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Carrie is not supposed to be attracted to him at this point. She's absolutely mercenary when it comes to the subjects of her cases, so her seducing him is completely true to her character. I don't see this as the show jumping the shark at all.

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Also, I sensed that Carrie had genuine feelings and attraction for Brody, even the first time she slept with him even if it was screwed up and complicated and there was an intelligence-gathering motive as well. This was just pure manipulation.

Why does she always have to get involved with those she is investigating or her sources? it's a bit... unprofessional. Oh, you say? Carrie is not... professional? Well, in the real world her relationships would be called "conflicts of interest" and she would be given the shaft. 

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So we've got a Pakistani version of Carrie now, complete with badass leather jacket. Interesting.

 

The ambassador's husband was the one feeding documents to Sandy who was then feeding them to the bad guys? I feel like there's one too many traitors there. I also feel like in real life this would be absolutely, utterly impossible. Tom Clancy described the Canary Trap twenty years ago. Basically, for every sensitive document that exists, everyone who gets a copy gets a slightly different version. The document leaks, there's a unique identifier that traces right back to the source.

 

I'm guessing the drugs are for Aayan's terror-uncle, who has bad kidneys or something like Osama Bin Laden had.

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The seduction was gross b/c I don't like Carrie. Has nothing to do with age, race or belief....I just don't want to see her bug eyes macking on somebody.

Is that Fred from Rosanne in the role as the former station chief? If so he has not aged well..

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Funny, female actors are paired up with male actors, twenty years older, all the time. Tony Goldwyn is 17 years older than Kerry Washington  and evereone is gaga over their chemistry. No one is grossed out by that and if they are, then they are in the minority.

 

That is exactly the case.

 

I'd say there's a big difference between a 54-year-old having a love scene with a 37-year-old, and a 35-year-old having a love scene with someone who looks like he's about 19.

 

That said, I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with a 35-year-old doing a love scene with someone college-age. What makes it icky is the way she's manipulating him, and the way it was filmed.

 

The seduction was gross b/c I don't like Carrie. Has nothing to do with age, race or belief....I just don't want to see her bug eyes macking on somebody.

Is that Fred from Rosanne in the role as the former station chief? If so he has not aged well..

 

That's him. Wow, I never would have even realized that if you hadn't pointed it out.

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It was a pretty great ep up until the ending. I did expect it, though, so I FF'd through the most of it. It was icky, but I still didn't hate it, because it made sense. It fits Carrie's usual modus operandi, and it was clear Fara wouldn't do something like this. As for the creepiness, I'm sure it was intended. It's not like Carrie being a wreck and doing pretty amoral stuff is a completely new thing.

 

Also I don't get what's gross. I hate that she has to do this stuff but he's an adult. It's really no different than what she did with Brody.

 

Yeah, pretty much. He looks young but I'm sure he's 21+, and she has proof he's involved with a known terrorist, so he's no innocent lamb.

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I thought it was icky because he is so innocent and currently freaked out by everything that has been happening.  The kid needs a mom, not a lover.  (But we know Carrie doesn't do "mom.")

 

The revelations were startling; the ambassador's husband being the leak and the Aayan's uncle still alive.  So much tension too with Saul's scene with his Pakistani counterpart and the scene with Quinn in the bad guy's apartment.  So it seems the Pakistani's have known all along the uncle is alive?  They manipulated the CIA into conducting the airstrike then killed Sandy to cover it up?

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Carrie's seduction of Aayan felt icky and not remotely necessary. It also came over as her seeming to be delusional about how irresistible she must be to men, if she thinks that will seal the deal. It also felt like poor judgment that she considered it necessary. I'm assuming that in future episodes Aayan will be shown to be so enamoured of her that the relationship she's conjured out of thin air will give her some sway over him, but I didn't buy this, and I won't buy that. Disappointing, show.

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While a typical American college student might jump at the chance to sleep with a 35 year old woman, I feel like Aayan is not like that. He might be going with it now, but I don't think it's going to be a positive in the long run. It's not going to make him feel beholden to her or loyal to her. If anything, he might dislike and distrust her afterward. A huge part of law enforcement is being able to read the situation to decide what will work. I think deciding to seduce Aayan was a miscalculation on Carrie's part. I think she is exotic to him, but that doesn't mean he is going to blindly do whatever she wants.

 

When Quinn saw her hugging Aayan earlier, the look on his face said that he knew this was coming.

 

Man, is that professor pathetic. Loved that his wife reminded him that his attempt at a career resulted in him plagiarizing. Ha!

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I would just like to see Carrie recruit a resource without using her vagina.  If Carrie was a male agent, would the writers have this be his go-to method? I doubt it. I find it rather sexist and insulting.

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Carrie's seduction of Aayan felt icky and not remotely necessary. It also came over as her seeming to be delusional about how irresistible she must be to men, if she thinks that will seal the deal. It also felt like poor judgment that she considered it necessary. I'm assuming that in future episodes Aayan will be shown to be so enamoured of her that the relationship she's conjured out of thin air will give her some sway over him, but I didn't buy this, and I won't buy that. Disappointing, show.

I think Carrie did think it was necessary and the line from Fara that he would never go along with the plan....I knew it was coming.

And of course it is a convenient plot device for Quinn to go all love sick crazy mid mission when he learns of this.

As with many others, I am much more intrigued with the other side of the plot....with the hubby/professor being the one selling the info and clearly having no idea what a real clusterfuck he has gotten himself into. I imagine Sandy isolated and hid the grim realities, but now that Sandy was used as a pawn in their game, hubby is smack down in the middle of it.

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The actor who plays Aayan is 21.  They are acting like he is already in med school not just pre-med so he must be in his early 20s on the show probably not a teen

 

Ether way  I agree at this point it seems unnecessary.  He was still trusting her at this point. 

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Is that Fred from Rosanne in the role as the former station chief? If so he has not aged well..

Wow! Good call!  I knew the whole time I was watching him I knew him from somewhere.  There was something so familiar about him and his voice but I just couldn't place him.  Never in a million years would have guessed it was Fred though!  Has he been a working actor all this time?  Can't recall seeing him in anything else.

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I saw a good review over at zap2it http://www.zap2it.com/blogs/homeland_season_4_episode_4_iron_in_the_fire_recap_review_carrie_aayan-2014-10 that does a good job of explaining Carrie's unlikability and how most of the audience now roots for her to lose. I've tried to explain it before but they do a better job. Basically they argue that the new Carrie isn't a hit b/c she doesn't have a boss that reels her in when she goes off the reservation- be it a Saul or Estes, etc. I've explained this before but I think we (audience) could excuse rogue crazy Carrie during season one b/c we knew she was right and so when Estes locked her up, we understood why he did it, but you still hated him for it b/c we knew Carrie was right about Brody. Then halfway through S2 everything switched when Carrie became only interested I clearing Brody and we never got that Carrie-Estes type dynamic back and the show has suffered, greatly.

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I didn't love the idea of Carrie seducing Aayan, but I also don't think we're meant to see this as an example of Carrie being irresistible.  I think it is supposed to illustrate how reckless she is.  I suspect we are supposed to contrast her actions to what Quinn was saying about them not being good guys. 

 

Anyway, I still thought it was unnecessary - I didn't think that they needed a honey pot trap for him.  But still, I think we were supposed to be uncomfortable with Carrie's behavior.

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Yeah seriously Carrie, this isn't a 40 year old man you're seducing! This is beyond gross. It's a shame that the writers either don't have any imagination or don't know a former member of the intelligence community to ask how the CIA would cultivate an asset like Aayan without it turning into "CIA Cougartown".

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The kid needs a mom, not a lover.  (But we know Carrie doesn't do "mom.")

 

He might be going with it now, but I don't think it's going to be a positive in the long run. It's not going to make him feel beholden to her or loyal to her. If anything, he might dislike and distrust her afterward. A huge part of law enforcement is being able to read the situation to decide what will work. I think deciding to seduce Aayan was a miscalculation on Carrie's part.

 

 

I agree.  I think Carrie accurately assessed that Aayan was vulnerable to seduction -- and by her -- but that she didn't pay heed to the possible consequences.  Another short-term risk that may bring almost immediate and long-term problems: like the air strike on the wedding (even if the target had been present), or her aborted decision to bring in the ISI irregular.  She had already neglected to take advantage of that spycraft goldmine, YouTube, to observe the most pertinent fact about Sandy's killing.   

 

Maybe now we are seeing more of how Carrie "missed something" back in the prelude to 9/11.  She feels terrific and focused, enough so that Fara and her new colleagues and anyone not familiar with her can be drawn in by her incisive, combative confidence.  But even more than most of us, Carrie is someone whose strengths are identical twins to her weaknesses: sharing the same source, sharing the same DNA.  In seeing farther she overlooks more; in acting faster, she outruns her judgment.  She rarely waits for her own, internal back-up.  Just because an insight or an action is difficult to pull off, doesn't make it something other than expedient: the easy way out.    

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I didn't love the idea of Carrie seducing Aayan, but I also don't think we're meant to see this as an example of Carrie being irresistible.  I think it is supposed to illustrate how reckless she is.... 

...I think we were supposed to be uncomfortable with Carrie's behavior.

Yes. Exactly. Still:

Why did Carrie need to seduce Aayan? Ick!...

Ickity ick ick ick!

Wow! Did that really just happen? Why not let Fara play seductive role....

That would've been doubly rapey, IMO. Fara's line about how awesome Carrie is tells us she would likely do anything to emulate her and win her approval.

...I'm guessing the drugs are for Aayan's terror-uncle, who has bad kidneys or something like Osama Bin Laden had.

That sounds more realistic than what I was thinking: Antidotes for a bioterror plot.

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In seeing farther she overlooks more; in acting faster, she outruns her judgment.

 

She also has trouble focusing on more than one thing at a time. As soon as Fara called with the news about Haqqani, she dropped Ghazi. She's unable to delegate - she has to do everything herself. If you want something done right...

 

A round of applause to the person who cast Mark Moses. He's always terrific.

 

The actor who plays Aayan is probably less uncomfortable with the love scenes and more excited by the fact that no one knew his name months ago, and now he's making out with Claire Danes.

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Michael O'Keefe has been working since Roseanne. He's done a lot of Law & Order franchise episodes - played the same priest at least a couple of times. They are making him look a lot worse than I think he normally does for this character. (He's also Bonnie Raitt's ex-husband).

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She also has trouble focusing on more than one thing at a time. As soon as Fara called with the news about Haqqani, she dropped Ghazi. She's unable to delegate - she has to do everything herself. If you want something done right...

 

 

To be fair to her, though, the news about Haqqani being alive is more important than going after Ghazi.  I think she recognized that immediately - picking up Ghazi, at that point, would have been counterproductive because it would have alerted the ISI/the Taliban or who ever is behind this whole plot that the CIA was aware of everything that was going on. 

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I don't know. On the show the Americans, everyone sleeps with everyone or uses sexually intimacy. for information. I do think it's not an uncommon tactic. It was gross to watch because we the viewers know that Carries seduction is a ploy and that makes it uncomfortable to watch.

Isn't the actor playing Aayan the kid from Life as Pi? Not a nobody if that's the case.

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Carrie didn't look at Aayan and decide to seduce him.

 

That was her strategy from the beginning, encouraging Farah to touch him when she first made contact with Aayan.

 

Seems that's the only play she has in her playbook.

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For now, I don't feel all that bad about what Carrie's doing to Aayan (whether it will be, or remain, effective is another matter)

 

 

  • Aayan knows his uncle isn't dead
  • Aayan knows his uncle wants people to think he's dead
  • It sure looks as if the not so late uncle was willing to sacrifice his and Aayan's family members to throw the CIA off the trail, unless the Aayan's video of the bombing is fake as well.  So unless that video is a fake, it sure looks like Aayan is an accomplice after the fact to the murder of his own family
  • Aayan is stealing drugs, or bribing people to steal them, which means that some people who need them may not get them.

I'm not saying Aayan is going around double tapping people in the back of the head, but I'm reserving judgment on his "innocence" and Carrie's manipulation of him.
 

The ambassador's husband was the one feeding documents to Sandy who was then feeding them to the bad guys? I feel like there's one too many traitors there. I also feel like in real life this would be absolutely, utterly impossible. Tom Clancy described the Canary Trap twenty years ago. Basically, for every sensitive document that exists, everyone who gets a copy gets a slightly different version. The document leaks, there's a unique identifier that traces right back to the source.


I guess I don't understand the husband's participation for a number of reasons.

Why would the ambassador's husband get involved? Though I'm guessing we'll find out eventually

What would the ambassador know that the CIA wouldn't already know?

I thought the exchange of info for drone targets was authorized by Lockhart, so why would Professor Plagiarist need to be involved?

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Carrie didn't look at Aayan and decide to seduce him.

 

That was her strategy from the beginning, encouraging Farah to touch him when she first made contact with Aayan.

This. Aayan rebuffed Fara's "seduction" in their first meeting. Carrie had told her to treat the meeting that way, but Fara was not comfortable doing that and Aayan immediately left. That is why Carrie met him in the bathroom. Even then, I could see that she was seducing Aayan so that he would contact her. The hug earlier in this episode made the final scene a fait accompli. I also thought Aayan is in medical school, so probably early to mid 20s. It doesn't lessen the "ick" factor for me, but he's not a teenager.

 

I know The Americans has someone from the intelligence community (whether current or former) as a consultant. I don't know if this show has one.

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I bet the poor actor was creeped out w/ having a woman 15 years his senior mauling him- even if it was acting. There is a rumor in the is that Danes gets a little too in to character at times and is quite intense.

 

 

Yes, because an older woman and a younger man is just SO disgusting, right?  

 

The scene wasn't troubling because of age, but because of power and Carrie is the one holding the power over Aayan;  he's not an equal in this.  Even if they both were the same age, it still would be troubling.  

 

Sometimes I wish folks wouldn't get so creeped out over age; as long as everybody is over 21 it's all good IMO.

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Carrie didn't look at Aayan and decide to seduce him.

 

That was her strategy from the beginning, encouraging Farah to touch him when she first made contact with Aayan.

 

Seems that's the only play she has in her playbook.

 

She does have the "yoga play." :)

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It sure looks as if the not so late uncle was willing to sacrifice his and Aayan's family members to throw the CIA off the trail, unless the Aayan's video of the bombing is fake as well.  So unless that video is a fake, it sure looks like Aayan is an accomplice after the fact to the murder of his own family

 

That seems like a crazy hasty conclusion to draw, given that we know practically nothing about this part of the plot yet. Every sign so far is that Ayyan is being blackmailed or threatened--he hardly comes off as a criminal accomplice and is desperate to leave Pakistan. I think the whole point of that final scene was to make people uneasy and to get them to feel some revulsion at Carrie's methods. That's why the scene comes off so differently from the similar one with Brody in season 1. If Ayyan didn't come off as a total innocent, it wouldn't really work.

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