At the end of the first episode of the third season (s03e01 : Tin Man Is Down) Carrie watches Saul's testimony on live television and is distraught. She is at home, alone, on her bed when she watches the television and she seems to be very distressed. Saul here announces the relation between Brody and an bipolar agent (not to mention Carrie before the committee).

Later on the fourth episode (s03e04 : Game on) we learn that the forced internment that Carrie has been through is a part on a well planned, elaborate and secret operation between Carrie and Saul to approach the Islamic terrorists.

So if all the beginning of the third season (the first four episodes) was planned by Carrie and Saul why is Carrie distraught while watching Saul's hearing before the Intelligence Committee ? I understand why she acts unstable, panicked or whatever while other people are around but in her bedroom alone ?

  • Perhaps it is a combination of her condition plus the memories of her affair with Brody and their ramifications that reduce her to this state.
    – Nobby
    Commented Dec 16, 2013 at 13:52
  • @Nobby : humm ... i am not convinced. To be sure i should re-watch the scene when Carrie reads in the news paper the revelation that Brody had a relation with a CIA agent. As far as I recall she is, at that moment, "just" pissed off (she is on the phone). So the memories of her affair with Brody came before in the episode and she had not the same reaction than the one in front of the live television. Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 9:20
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    I think it is just a stupid tv thing where they are making us believe one thing is happening so the characters have to keep up the pretense even when they are alone. I don't have any evidence for this but it is just my opinion, I thought the same thing as you when they revealed it was part of the plan. I am sure in the next episode (or that one, can't remember) Carrie and Saul are alone and she looks at him and says 'f*** you' because of what he did...but no one is there to see it so it is just in there to trick us.
    – user7829
    Commented Feb 18, 2014 at 23:09

3 Answers 3


While later programs make it obvious to omniscient viewers of the series that Carrie's actions are in line with the events which play out, her reactions are realistically inline with those of a person who suffers from a profound mental disorder. When this occurs, the person has very limited control (if any) over their response to external stimuli, especially disturbing or proactive actions such as Saul's testimony.

Even though later the viewer discovers that Carrie was involved in a wide ranging subterfuge, it is conceivable that her simply hearing comments which she knew might be coming engendered inappropriate emotional reactions in her. After all, as shown by the series, Carrie is barely able to control her emotional and mental states in non-stressful periods, so she couldn't be expected to control during stressful ones.


Good question! Just a guess, but perhaps she thought she was under surveillance, so she had to act the part. There might have spy cameras hidden in her house, or some people with binoculars & telephoto leses could have been watching her through a window.

That makes sense regarding the story. But from the perspective of the filmmakers and actors, it would have confused the audience (and/or hinted too much at the surprising "truth") if Carrie reacted any other way. That's not a very compelling reason, though.

One other possibility: she didn't know how far Saul would throw her under the bus. She didn't know he was going to completely disown her. And that would really hurt her, since she was completely abandoned by everyone EXCEPT Saul until that moment. (Plus they have that symbolic father-daughter relationship thing going on.)


I think that perhaps they hatched the plan after she was in the hospital. Remember when she says "F*** you, Saul," after they had just drugged her and she could barely get the words out? I think that's when he told her about the Jivadi play he had in mind. Like, "Since you're in here anyway, Carrie, would you mind seeing if anyone reaches out to you?"

I may be wrong, but I had the same question and realized that we didn't know when the agreement beween Saul and Carrie had happened.


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