Showtime's Homeland, starring Damian Lewis, 41, as the morally ambiguous Nicholas Brody and Claire Danes, 33, as the neurotic Carrie Mathison, shocked fans two Sundays in a row when it got rid of two of its important characters: Jamey Sheridan's Vice President Walden and Navid Negahban's Abu Nazir.

While the creators behind the scenes have been sure about the track the show would follow for awhile, figuring out how to execute the details wasn't quite as easy. "The long answer is we weren’t actually sure how that would happen," Homeland executive producer Alex Gansa told Entertainment Weekly about the most recent episode. "But the reason we wanted Walden and Nazir both dead is we wanted to open the possibility that Brody and Carrie could have a happy ending, that their doomed romance was not doomed after all. The only way to make that happen was to off these two antagonists.”

Some fans, however, find some of the twists from the episodes leading up to the season two finale of the Emmy-winning Homeland to be a bit far fetched. “Do I wish everybody loved the episode and thought it was our best episode of all time? Of course I do,” says Gansa. “Am I a little disappointed that some people felt it strained credulity? Yeah, I’m a little disappointed about that. However, I am prepared to have a conversation with anybody about every single one of those plot points and why I believe they are emotionally true," he said.

Now, with one episode remaining in season two, Gansa is opening up about where the arc of the show has brought it. “The final episode is called ‘The Choice,’ and what I can say about it is Walden is dead. Nazir is dead. So we’ve sort of left the thriller aspects of the show behind and now we come to a very personal story about Carrie and Brody and all the obstacles that lie in the way of them being together. That is what the finale is about. It’s a real character study of these two people, where they’ve come from, how they regard each other, and whether or not there’s a future for them.”

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