Showtime's Homeland is one of the rare television shows where the first season continues to be its strongest. After the series broke onto the scene with one of the most critically-acclaimed and tense seasons of the past decade, the series faltered and stumbled in its two subsequent runs. A lot of that had to do with Brody's (Damian Lewis) character overstaying his use and welcome, but the writers also struggled to direct Carrie (Claire Danes) after the events that took place in the first season.
Fortunately, the series' fourth season managed to be a return-to-form and it brought Homeland back to the level of quality that hooked TV viewers in from the beginning, with one of the most unpredictable seasons of television last year. However, following Carrie and Quinn (Rupert Friend) parting ways and her move to Berlin - it sounds like the change in supporting players and setting may continue to help revitalize each season of the series from here on out.
In a new casting report, it has been revealed that actors Alexander Fehling (Inglourious Basterds), Sebastian Koch (A Good Day to Die Hard), Miranda Otto (The Lord of the Rings Trilogy), and Sarah Sokolovic (Cold Comes the Night) have all been added to the cast for the show's upcoming fifth season. Fehling will play a character named Jonas Happich - a lawyer already dating Carrie (Claire Danes) by the time the season begins; Koch will play a German Philanthropist named Otto Düring who also happens to be Carrie's boss; Miranda Otto will star as Allison Carr - the Berlin Chief of Station working directly under Saul (Mandy Patinkin), and Sokolovic will play an unnamed American Journalist working for the same Berlin foundation as Carrie and Jonas.
The fifth season of the series is set to pick up in Berlin three years after the events that ended season four. Filming for the season begins this week.
If there's one thing that Homeland has managed to do right all throughout its four season run - it has been establishing an ensemble cast of solid actors ranging from familiar names like Danes and Patinkin to small character actors like Tracy Letts. All of these new additions seem like they'll be able to fall into the cast with ease, especially veterans like Otto and Koch.
Homeland has used time jumps to both positive and negative results in the past, and it'll be interesting to see the kind of emotional and psychological states the characters are in when the new season picks up a few years into the future. The show managed to put itself back on the map last year, and while not much is known about the new season's story as of yet - it sounds like fans of the series are in for an entirely unique season this time around. The change in location last year was a major factor in contributing to its overall tension and it looks like Berlin will be able to provide the same kind of stakes this time around as well.