Emmy episode analysis: F. Murray Abraham makes a deal with the devil in ‘Homeland’

f. murray abraham homeland dar adal long time coming emmys guest actor showtime

F. Murray Abraham is a veteran of stage and screen, with a 1984 Oscar on his mantel for his lead role in “Amadeus,” but his Best Drama Guest Actor nomination this year for Showtime’s “Homeland” is his first recognition at the Emmys. He plays CIA agent Dar Adal, who is often involved in operations even Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) knows nothing about. He competes in this race with the episode “Long Time Coming,” the fourth season finale.

Emmys exclusive: Which episode is Claire Danes submitting to judges?

SYNOPSIS: Dar visits Carrie in the hopes of learning the whereabouts of CIA agent Peter Quinn (Rupert Friend), who went rogue in Pakistan trying to exact revenge on terrorist leader Haissam Haqqani. But when Dar later meets with Saul Berenson (Mandy Patinkin) to convince him to return to the CIA, Dar reveals that he’s actually made a secret deal with Haqqani. Carrie eventually confronts Dar with what she knows about his connection to Haqqani, but she storms out after she sees that Saul has accepted their sinister arrangement.

Will Abraham win an Emmy to go along with his Oscar? Let’s consider the pros and cons:


Abraham has a strong, sinister presence even in exposition scenes, always suggesting more to Dar Adal than meets the eye.

Emmy voters love to reward veteran actors. Being an Oscar-champ doesn’t hurt.

After falling out of favor last year, “Homeland” made a comeback in season four, including a return to the Best Drama Series lineup. That renewed support could carry over to Abraham’s performance.


The character is cool and composed, so it’s Danes and Patinkin who do most of the showy emoting during their scenes with him.

His scenes drive the story forward and raise the stakes for Carrie and Saul, but we don’t learn much about Dar as a character himself.

A political strategist and opportunist, Dar Adal isn’t very likable, and he lacks the showboating panache awards voters usually like in their villains.

Emmys 2015: Complete List of Episode Submissions

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