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5 Reasons Why You Need to Catch Up with Homeland

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Missed out on the first series? Bad move. The good news is the Season 1 DVD is out this week and we have copies to give away.

Here's five reasons why you want to win one:

1 Claire Danes

Danes is an unexpected revelation as the brilliant-but-manic CIA officer Carrie Mathison who cares just a little too much for her own good. Probably the best-drawn woman character on TV, Danes manages to balance her intelligence, paranoia, selfishness and complexity throughout.

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2 Everyone Else

Claire Danes may get the headlines, but it's hard to find a flaw in the supporting cast either. Damian Lewis is strong as the implacable returning prisoner of war Sergeant Brody, Morgan Saylor as Brody's fiery teenage daughter, Brit David Harewood is good as the ambiguous CIA department chief and Mandy Patinkin is the second stand-out as Carrie's softly spoken, world-weary but wise mentor Saul.

3 It's Paced to Perfection

From the people who brought you 24, you might expect a relentless barrage of manic cutting and breathless action. Instead, Homeland is a slow starter that builds its tension gradually and credibly as the season unfolds. It's a lesson in how to keep suspense high with genuine cliffhanger endings, but without treating the audience like idiots on an endless plot tease like Lost and its kind.

4 Stand-out Episodes

Every top-drawer US series needs a handful of episodes that raise the bar even higher and become event viewing in their own right. Homeland delivers here again, the first of which has to be episode 7 'The Weekend' set in a woodland lodge and bringing together a number of bubbling sub-plots in one sweaty-palmed bonanza. No spoilers but it's one of the greats of recent TV history.

5 Morena Baccarin

We're going to ruin a fairly objective view of the TV show by thanking the show's casting director for giving us Morena Baccarin as Brody's wife. Let's just say he's done very well for himself.

Homeland season 1 is out now on DVD and blu-ray

For your chance to win a copy enter here