OH MY GOD we were literally just discussing this yesterday on WhatsApp because I was reading this article about the cancellation of a lot of TV shows meant to represent #MeToo:
Me: This article lists several TV shows that are doing #MeToo episodes and I was thinking like….. wtf does a “#MeToo episode” of Homeland even look like. I wonder if the show would be more overtly feminist if it wasn’t also about such massive geopolitical conflict/issues. And I still vacillate between thinking the show (i.e., writers) presents Carrie as a feminist hero or a post-feminist hero.
by postfeminism i mean the viewpoint that we’ve “moved on” from feminism and everyone is equal now. like when people say we live in a post-racial society where race doesn’t matter. (note: i don’t think we live in a postfeminist or post-racial world, but many people do!)
Ashley: Well I think it might need to be addressed in season 8
Me: Well I think you are right!
Frangi: … it’s a fascinating question. With what happened to Carrie in S7 they have all the cards to go there in S8
To be honest, I hadn’t even thought about a Homeland #MeToo episode in the context of Carrie being in that Russian prison when I sent that message above. Even though in Claire’s Pod Tour of America this summer, during one of the podcasts it seemed like Claire was about 4 milliseconds away from saying they’d had conversations about Carrie being sexually assaulted while in Russia (Gail got the same feeling).
I was actually thinking a lot more literally, and about characters addressing the actual #MeToo movement directly, by name. Of course, in reality, it feels like almost any show with a female character at its center in the year 2018 can’t help but address the #MeToo movement, if for no other reason than that the movement itself has really crystallized how pervasive these types of experiences are in almost every woman’s life. Avoiding, responding to, and enduring these experiences are daily, ongoing tasks. (A recent tweet illustrates one aspect of this extremely well.)
Beyond the above, I haven’t actually put a ton of thought into the relationship between Carrie Mathison and #MeToo. I agree with Ashley and Frangi that it’s definitely something that could (should?) be explored in season eight.
After I sent that original message, we all got to talking about whether Carrie’s storyline, especially as it relates to Franny, is feminist or not. There are still differing opinions on that matter in this group. It’s a really messy, complex discussion that deserves to be had.