Homecoming Recap Season 1 Episode 1 – Mandatory

Just getting started with Homecoming on Prime Video with Julia Roberts? Good. We are too. Join us for an episode by episode discussion of this suspenseful drama.

Click here to listen to our Episode 1 discussion on the podcast.

***SPOILERS AHEAD***

Season 1, Episode 1: “Mandatory”

Homecoming

Synopsis: The Homecoming Transitional Support Center is a safe space for veterans to process their military experience and re-familiarize themselves with civilian life. In a monitored environment.

We’re introduced to Homecoming Transitional Support Center, a private initiative to reintegrate returning soldiers into civilian life. The location is Tampa, Florida and the date is April 10, 2018. We’re introduced to Heidi Bergman and her patient Walter Cruz.

Heidi starts her relationship with Walter by explaining the mandatory elements of the program: group meals, workshops and one-on-one sessions with Heidi. 

We also meet Colin Belfast, Heidi’s boss who is full of frenetic energy and clearly a man on a mission.

Throughout the episode we go from 2018 and flash forward to “present day” which is supposed to be four years into the future. Heidi is living another life, working in a diner, and finds herself being questioned by Thomas Carrasco from the Department of Defense about her time with the Homecoming program.

The episode ends with Heidi and Thomas talking privately while Heidi claims she doesn’t remember a significant portion of her involvement with the Homecoming program. We’re left wondering if she’s lying or truly doesn’t remember.

Throughout this podcast episode, we talk a lot about symbolism, including the palm trees. We talk about the use of sound elements tying it to its original podcasting roots. And we talk about the clever cinematography to help convey the “then” and “now” feelings.

Title Tipoff

At the end of every podcast, we talk about the episode title, the question overlay on the episode thumbnail, and how they fit into the episode. 

Episode title: Mandatory

Question: ARE THE SOLDIERS THERE VOLUNTARILY?

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