(NEW YORK) — Now in its eighth and final season, Showtime’s Homeland is as intense as ever: There’s growing tension between Pakistan and the U.S. as Claire Danes’ CIA operative Carrie Mathison tries to find the real culprit behind the deaths of two world leaders.

True Blood star Sam Trammell stars on Homeland this season as the hawkish, inexperienced President Benjamin Hayes.  He checked in from home to tell us why we should watch such a stressful show when we’re all trying to stay calm while quarantined.

“Maybe that’s your exercise!” he laughs. “You know, it’s just exercise for your inside metabolism. You know, get your heart racing!”

“It is extraordinarily stressful,” he allows, but notes, “The production value this year is off the charts. I mean, it’s like you’re watching these movies…they really threw everything at it this year…there’s so much going on: The stakes are so high and there’s so many different players involved in international politics….it’s a blast!”

As for Sunday’s episode, Trammell tells ABC Audio, “I don’t want to give away too much, but it’s leading toward a standoff with Pakistan, massive geopolitical ramifications, and two different countries potentially coming up against each other.”

Trammell says he’s been “honored” to join the acclaimed show for its final season, calling Homeland “the A-Team of TV.” But for him, the best part is getting to play the Leader of the Free World.

“Oh, it’s such a power trip!” he laughs. “I love it. Everybody should get to do it at some point…people open doors for you. You get this sort of unconscious added respect in the room.”

“Sitting in the Oval Office behind the desk is incredible,” he adds. “I mean, it was just a set…But you walk in there…and you feel the power of that office.”

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