The message in "A Gettysburg Address" isn't coded, and it's even shorter than the famous Lincoln speech it references: Don't trust Brody.
Mike brings that message to Jess after doing a little digging with Lauder into Walker's death. The detective on the case can't give them much information, saying the CIA yoinked the file almost immediately; that sends Lauder off on a veiled rant about Brody and Vice President, and Mike to his contact at the CIA to see if he can learn more. He can't: his contact kicks Mike over to Saul, who brings him into a closed-doors meeting with Estes, who warns Mike to stand down. When Mike objects that he's being stonewalled, Saul corrects him, "No, Major. You're being told by fellow intelligence officers — respectfully at this point — not to pursue" the matter any further. Brrr.
The lone-gunman theory
But Mike does pursue it, rifling through the Brody garage and finding an ammo box with a single bullet missing. When Jessica comes home, he shares his conclusions, because he cares about her and Brody hasn't been "okay" since coming home: "I love you, and he's not getting better." Don't, Jess tells him, choosing to trust Brody.
She shouldn't. Cleverly, Brody calls Jess's curious bluff, telling her to ask him anything about his CIA work and he'll try to answer. She backs down, but does ask if he's working with "her, again? Carrie? The nut?" Brody lies that he isn't.
And he might have lied to Carrie and the team, too. Tailing Roya, the AV Club spots her meeting with a new guy they can't identify. Brody's brought in to see if he knows New Guy, which he denies, then sent to meet Roya himself to try to draw her out. Everyone keeps telling Carrie not to trust Brody: Quinn, who's still suspicious of Carrie's objectivity, and gives her grief about not pressing Brody harder during the debrief; Saul, to whom Quinn supposedly tattled about his concerns, and who chooses to accept Carrie's assurances that the suicide video opened her eyes, though she's the worst liar in history in that scene; even Brody himself communicates it to her, in a way, when he belatedly informs the team what became of the Tailor (and dissociates himself from it by describing it as "an accident").
Objectively, Carrie knows she shouldn't trust him, and at times, she's able to shut down the connection she feels with him and treat him like an asset. When Brody's freaking out about his meeting with Roya — the play is that, when he went to Carrie's apartment on a booty call the previous evening, he overheard her talk about a recently arrived Hezbollah operative — Carrie is warm, physical, stroking his arm, touching his face. Brody calls her out: "What is this, sex? Understanding?" The door of Carrie's face slams closed, and she snaps at him to use the new phone she gave him. But after Brody leaves, she seems to be wondering to herself why she keeps getting sucked in.
Your silence speaks volumes
After all her arguments on Brody's behalf, telling Quinn that if Brody wanted to rat them out to the other side he could have done it already, pulling Quinn out of the room when he and Brody start puffing chests at each other, Brody might have burned her. The AV Club is watching him meet with Roya, and the team hears Roya tell him that "they're" watching the Tailor's shop, and they know Quinn and a forensics team have arrived to look for evidence. The team also hears Brody ask if forensics is going to find anything, and Roya's cryptic response, "They might." But there's a stretch where they hear nothing at all, possibly because neither Roya nor Brody is speaking out loud thanks to a nearby civilian, possibly because Brody's face is turned away and he's mouthing something.
We can't say for sure, but we can tell you what forensics finds, just as Quinn is looking speculatively at a wall in the back of the Tailor's shop that looks recently plastered — a black-clad team of machine-gun assassins. Nazir's force comes right in through the front door and strafes everyone inside, killing Galvez and possibly Quinn (he plays dead until the assassins leave, then tries to sit up, but he's gutshot). After cutting open the back wall and removing what looks like a black meat freezer, the ninjae pick up their dead and go out the way they came in.
Carrie barges into Brody's office: "Did you know? Did you know." He expresses (or feigns) confusion about what she's referring to. "I have got seven casualties in Gettysburg — you told her something, didn't you?" "I didn't lie to you," he says. Carrie realizes she may have lied to herself, about him, and it may have cost the Gettysburg team their lives. She begins to sob, and he folds her into his arms. Again, she chooses to trust him, while over her shoulder, he stares into the middle distance, inscrutable.
The episode even has a "don't trust Dana Brody" message circulating, kind of. Haunted by the hit-and-run she participated in with Finn, Dana meets up with Finn at school. He shines her on with a bunch of "it's fiiiiine, those other people called 911, take it easy," so she elects to "take it easy" at the hospital, searching the ICU for the victim. It's highly unlikely on any number of levels, but she not only finds the woman they hit — she bonds with the woman's daughter, who confides that a nurse told her to call a priest, and then she witnesses the woman's final agonies. When Dana shares all that with Finn and thinks it's time to tell someone, he's livid, and more or less threatens to kill himself if she says anything.
If we can trust the writers (and we think we can), that subplot will blow up next week.
Watch Claire Danes and Damian Lewis preview a panel discussion about the show from last March, right here:
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