Geez, the ads seemed longer and the show seemed shorter. And, yes, I now have a DVR
See below the fold for Lost wrap up.
What a way to cut the budget! Now only half of the stars are left. Doc Jensen has an interview with the Lost guys who explain that this much death was necessary to show that death was an optionand Doc Jensen has an interview with the Lost guys who explain that (didn't we already know that) and that Smokey is really, really bad and must be stopped (ditto). JK killed the owl to prove that point early and then Mad Eye. Dobby was a bit over the top but can be seen in this light. I guess she is their role model (Fred, Tonks, Lupin). Never mind.
Heaps of stuff happened but it is all quite literally drowned out by that ending.
I must first focus on the irony that Jack's plan last season got Juliet killed (and plenty of people we don't care about, but who knows how many since Jacob Levy has pointed out that we have no idea)--but Sawyer's mistake gets half of our survivors killed.
Ok, contemplate that for a minute while I go through LA and then the Island.
The LA story line was a Locke origin tale ultimately with a bit of Claire and Jack tossed in. And some Jack growth here as well. One of the continuing themes is Jack's need to fix stuff, and he is obsessed about fixing Locke's back. He keeps waking up his sleeping patient, which is pretty piss poor beside manner if you ask me.
One time before he does so, Locke is dreaming and speaks in his sleep some fun quotes: "push the button" and "I wish you had believed me." Oh, but John, now he does.
I love how Cuse and Lindelof tease: "You are a candidate" Jack says to Locke. Sure, sure.
We get a very nice Claire and Jack moment with yet another mystery--what is this box for? [Is there a bomb inside?] Who cares, but Jack does invite the poor and stranded Claire to live with him, as "we are family." Very sweet note likely to be lost in the tragedy to follow.
Anyhow, so Jack is obsessed to find out more about Locke's accident for some reason--well, we know the reason--to give us the backstory we need. Thanks. We bump into Bernard who does not give up too much info but Anthony Cooper's name. And Coop, it seems, is now catatonic (excuse my medical knowledge shortage here) or whatever. So, Sawyer may have a hard time finding him. He certainly is not going to kill Cooper in this reality.
The final conversation between Jack and Locke in the hospital reminds us of how good these guys are together. Lots of complaints by many about Jack and about Matthew Fox, but when given O'Quinn to chat with, he brings his game and this scene was terrific. Locke hurt himself and his father in a plane crash, as we didn't have enough of those already. Why did Locke have such a great relationship in this reality? How did Cooper become a decent guy? I wonder if we will get any explanation of the changes that are unrelated to the Island. Probably not.
But it leaves with "What happened happened. You can let it go." "Letting go is not so easy." "I don't know how to do it myself. Maybe you can go first."
Just a great bit of writing. Very nicely done. Again, probably going to be, ahem, Lost, given the events in the sub.
Of course, we are left with heaps of questions like, where is Desmond? Did he fall into a well in this reality? Why did he run over Locke?
Ok, to the Island.
Confrontation with Widmore--that Kate is not a candidate. How does Widmore know? Sawyer concurs, given her name being crossed off. I wonder what discounted her--will we be told what a qualifies someone as a candidate? Given that Sawyer killed an innocent guy in Australia, that would make him at least as tainted as Kate.
"I am doing this for your own good." Sure, right.
Mortar, not a rocket, thank you, Sayid for your second to last bit of service.
Smokey also has to work on his bedside manner:
"Why should I trust you?"
"Because I can kill you."
Machiavelli would disagree--fear might be better than love, but it ain't gonna build trust. And restraint now does not guarantee it later.
Back to the cage, as soon as Sun and Jin got all lovey-dovey, I knew one of them was going to bite it, and wrote so in my notes (to celebrate May the Fourth be with you, I wrote, "It's a trap.")
I didn't quite expect both.
We see Smokey picking up the watch, and I didn't quite guess in time, but it was pretty obvious (Kathy Saideman's rule #1 of fiction ).
We all knew he switched the backpacks. This did answer a question I have been wondering about for weeks--what is in Jack's pack? Nothing important, just a placeholder for when Smokey switches bags.
Then Kate gets a flesh wound! Forces Jack to board the sub. Ooops.
Jack has it right: "We did exactly what he wanted. He cannot kill us but we can."
So, Sayid tells Jack about Desmond quickly so that he can take the bomb to the other side of the sub. Good effort, should have closed some watertight doors along the way, but he is not a squid but an army guy. And he redeems himself by sacrificing himself for the greater good (imagine token reference to Hot Fuzz here). We all knew that Sayid was going to sacrifice himself to save his friends. We just didn't know it would be running with a bomb on a sub which is probably worse than running with scissors.
Frank dies when the door flies into him. So, we are then left with the following question: what was his purpose for this season, other than comic relief? He didn't fly the plane. Oh, but dum de dum dum, Smokey can fly the plane!!!! Perhaps he has knowledge from the alt reality Locke. Of course, as our terrorist friends can testify, flying a private prop plane and a big jet are two different things, so they will have to bend reality a good bit if Smokey wants to fly off Hydra Island. Anyhow, Frank is dead without really much added value in this season other than being a quip-master and a target of some good recent Sawyer nicknames. Alas, poor Chesty, if we only knew you better.
Which leaves us with the Sun/Jin suicide pact. Jack has to save Sawyer (more irony here), Hurley takes Kate. Jin stays with Sun because of his vow. But, wait, doesn't he have a kid? Who is now an orphan? I am sorry, Mrs. Spew, but in this situation, I would leave to save myself so that I could raise the little Spew a.k.a. Spew Junior. I found this moving but not realistic. If the strong Sun of the last season was around (when she confronted Widmore and her father), she would have blasted Jin, telling him to man up and get out to take care of the little one.
So, we are left with four plus Miles, Ben, Richard and Desmond. Four old and four newer folks. Miles is dead meat, as we must eliminate all tailies and freighter folk.
And Smokey knows the job is only half done. "To finish what I started."
So, what can we make of all of this? Jack is looking like THE Candidate, but is it too soon? We still have Desmond, Hurley, Sawyer and potential Ben if Doc Jensen is right. Jack definitely is making better decisions, even if Sawyer messed it up. Indeed, what is Sawyer going to do once he wakes up and realizes he killed four of his pals, people he had sworn (well, Sun and Jin anyway) to protect? No booze left anywhere is there?
Oh, and does a wet Smokey not turn into a flying smoke monster? That was Sawyer's plan, and, indeed, Smokey had a tough time getting out of the water.
And, of course, we have several pieces left in play: Widmore with a greatly diminished crew (Zoe and an untold number of redshirts); Richard's team of saboteurs; and our pals the surviving survivors. Oh and Smokey and Claire. Claire may just yet realize that Smokey is not a good guy, having killed a bunch of folks for whom she might have feelings.
Of course, the big question is what is the relationship between the two worlds? Does all this death not matter since the new reality will take over? Will all the stuff in LA not matter as the true reality is on the blood-soaked island? Can people choose? Obviously, this will not be answered until the end.
All those folks who complained the plot was moving slowly can now calm down a bit. And yes, some stuff was rushed now that could have been developed more had we not wasted as much time earlier. But I am on this ride for the duration, and tonight's trip around the tracks was thrilling and moving. Not a bad job.
My next move--to post about the impact of this episode on the "Lost and Out of My Mind" game.
But to repeat, oh my oh my oh my.