Cookie banner

This site uses cookies. Select "Block all non-essential cookies" to only allow cookies necessary to display content and enable core site features. Select "Accept all cookies" to also personalize your experience on the site with ads and partner content tailored to your interests, and to allow us to measure the effectiveness of our service.

To learn more, review our Cookie Policy, Privacy Notice and Terms of Use.

clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Use 'Em and Lose 'Em: A Guide to Carrie's Love Life on 'Homeland'

Photo: Showtime

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

Homeland's fifth season returned last Sunday with the introduction of Jonas: Carrie's live-in boyfriend, coworker, and arguably her hunkiest love interest to date. But who came before him? And where are they now? A quick refresher — with major of spoilers, if you're not caught up — below.

Nicholas Brody

Status: Dead

The Nicholas Brody plotline started in the very first episode of Season 1, and ended in the very last episode of Season 3. Brody was a Marine sniper who was captured and detained in Damascus for eight years. During that time, he converted to Islam; moved into the home of al-Qaeda commander Abu Nazir; and began teaching Nazir's son, Issa, English. After Issa was killed in an American drone strike, Brody's loyalties shifted considerably. Later, he would attempt (but fail) to kill the US vice president in a suicide attack.

Brody and Carrie first meet during an interrogation when he returns to the US, and Carrie launches an obsessive Brody-surveillance operation while also sleeping with him. (Brody is married to Jessica, who was dating Mike, Brody's former best friend, when she thought he was dead — it's actually a soap opera). Everything erupts when he finds out that Carrie thinks he's a terrorist. Irreconcilable differences!

In Season 2 they patch it up, and Brody goes on a mission to win back the loyalty of Nazir on behalf of another CIA plot. Season 2 ends with a car bomb — inside Brody's car, as luck would have it — that kills 200 people who are attending the vice president's funeral. (By this point Brody has managed to help kill the vice president). Al Qaeda airs the suicide tape Brody made before the first assassination attempt, and in Season 3, he becomes a drug-addled fugitive.

But then! He returns to the US. He gets clean. He's sent on a new mission, but it goes awry at the Iranian border. Despite this being a very bad idea, he sticks to the script, which is to murder General Danesh Akbar. Unbeknownst to Carrie, part of the plan was to make sure that Brody didn't make it back alive. On the final episode, he's hanged in a public square while Carrie watches. Oh, and she's pregnant with his child.

Aayan Ibrahim

Status: Dead

So this was all very weird. Aayan is a medical student in Islamabad who just so happened to be the nephew of the terrorist Haissam Haqqani. He also just so happened to film a recent US drone strike that killed several members of his family on his cellphone, which quickly made its way to YouTube. The strike, of course, was meant to kill Haqqani (it didn't).

As part of yet another elaborate ruse, Carries pretends to be a journalist and promises she can secure Aayan asylum in London, as things are getting pretty complicated for him in Islamabad. She seduces him in Episode 4, a scene which can only be described as "icky."

Carrie continues to manipulate (and sleep with) Aayan; she plans a faux attempted kidnapping, knowing full well that Aayan would run to his uncle for refuge. It worked: Aayan and Haqqani meet up under the watchful eye of CIA drone pilots. Needless to say, Haqqani is less than thrilled about all the unwanted attention, and shoots Aayan in the head while Carrie watches.

Aasar Khan

Status: Still alive for all we know

This story arch was espionage at its Homeland finest. Khan is a Lieutenant Colonel for the Pakistan's ISI who forms a puzzling alliance with Carrie, though it's never really clear exactly what side he's on.

In Season 4, the ISI launch an elaborate attack on Carrie: they switch out her bipolar medication for hallucinogens. This leads to a tear through the streets of Pakistan, where Carrie is eventually detained by police — again, all a part of the ISI plan. Her bad trip ends with a meltdown in the arms of Khan, who she believes to be Brody because, well, she's still tripping. So, is Khan a good guy? A bad guy? Both? It's dicey, but one thing's for sure: he's a good looking counter-terrorism chief.

Peter Quinn

Status: Alive, droppin' bodies

The slow-burn, short-lived romance between Carrie and Quinn didn't even get going until the end of Season 4, and even then it barely went anywhere. But who knows! Maybe it'll all work out in Season 5 if Quinn gives up his day job as an assassin.

We first meet Quinn in Season 2, when he joins the surveillance team that's watching Brody. Except Quinn is a black-ops agent, so his assignment was actually to kill Brody when the CIA got all they needed. Ultimately — because he's really just a teddy bear at heart — he refuses to do so.

Quinn has a bunch of close calls throughout the next few seasons: he's shot in Episode 6 of Season 4; dodges bullets in the US embassy attack in Episode 10; and is talked out of assassinating Haqqani in Episode 11 (which would have lead to his own death, as well as Carrie's).

In the finale, Quinn and Carrie finally get together on the day of her father's funeral, where they makeout against his pickup truck — of course he has a pickup truck — and he tries to convince her to leave the CIA and run away with him. but Carrie takes too long to decide whether or not she'll actually "fuck it all up." By the time she's ready to lock it down, Quinn has already left on yet another mission. Quinn shows up in the first episode of Season 5, though, so this could still happen. Maybe.

Jonas Happich

Status: Carrie's live-in boyfriend

The bad news: we don't really know anything about Jonas yet, other than the fact that he lives with Carrie and her daughter, Franny, in Berlin, and also works with her at The Foundation. The good news: he's signed on for twelve episodes, so there's plenty of time to find out where this goes.