Fighting with the Sky

Posts Tagged ‘Lost

This was the episode where we finally learned the story of Richard.  From the commercials for it, I was expecting something epic and amazing.  For the first half of the episode, I was a little disappointment.  But in the second half, we actually learned some important things, even though they might not be the most revealing things to have learned.

We learn that Richard used to live on the Canary Islands with his ill wife.  While trying to get medicine for his wife, he accidentally kills the doctor.  Upon arrival home after the event, he finds that his wife has died as well.  He is sentenced to hang for the murder of the doctor, but someone buys him as a slave because he speaks English for a trip to the New World.  On said trip, there is a storm that leads them to shipwreck on the island.  For about 10 minutes, we watch Richard struggle against his chains in the boats as everyone around him is killed.  First, the officers kill the other slaves, but Smokey gets to the officers because they can get to Richard.  Richard also sees his dead wife, who he believes was then killed by Smokey as well.

The Man In Black (MIB) later comes and frees Richard from his chains.  He tells Richard that he can see his wife again if he kills the Devil — i.e. Jacob.  He tells Richard that he cannot let the Devil even speak to him, because then it would be too late.  As you may recall, this is the same thing that Dogen told Sayid when he tasked him with killing Flocke/MIB.

As Richard approaches the statue, where the MIB told him that he could find the Devil/Jacob, Jacob jumps him.  Jacob explains to Richard that the MIB is not who he seems.  The MIB believes that everyone is corruptible and that the only thing keeping the darkness contained is the island.  Jacob believes that if the MIB were allowed to leave the island, that the darkness and evil would spread throughout the world.  This is why Jacob brings people to the island, hoping to show the MIB that not everyone is corruptible.  But Jacob doesn’t want to interfere with these people, he wants them to make the right decision on their own.  But as Richard points out, the MIB is more than willing to interfere with the people that come to the island, so why shouldn’t Jacob?  Jacob offers this job, the job of intermediary between himself and the people that he brings to the island to Richard.  Richard accepts on the condition that he can live forever.  He first wants to see his wife again, which Jacob cannot do, then he wants his sins absolved, which Jacob can also not do.  So he settles on living forever so that he never has to pay for his sins.

Even though Richard chose to side with Jacob, the MIB told him that his offer still stands — that he could see his wife again if he sided with him and helped him escape from the island.

Back in present day, Richard has stormed off into the jungle to find where he buried his wife’s cross.  He yells out into the jungle that he changed his mind and hopes that the offer (of the MIB) still stands.  But then Hurley shows up.  He says that Isabella, Richard’s wife, sent him and that she has a message for him.  She tells Richard that it was not his fault that she died.  She also asks him to stop the MIB from leaving the island or else they all go to hell.

So we’ve known for a while that Jacob and the MIB are connected — that the MIB cannot leave the island as long as Jacob is alive and as long as one of the candidates takes Jacob’s spot.  But as of right now, there is no one that has taken Jacob’s spot, so the MIB is theoretically free to leave the island if he can find a way off of it.  But they are also connected in that they cannot be killed unless they have not spoken to their killer first (did Jacob speak to Ben before Ben killed him?) and they have to be killed with a specific knife.

My lasting question is: who is really to be trusted, Jacob or the MIB?  The show is obviously painting Jacob as the man to be trusted.  But when the MIB was speaking to Richard, he painted Jacob as the Devil who was keeping people, including Richard’s wife, hostage.  Even though the MIB is also Smokey and very obviously has killed many people, I still have this feeling that the show is going to pull the rug out from underneath us and it is going to turn out that Jacob is actually the “bad guy” and the MIB/Flocke is the “good guy.”  I don’t know how they are going to go about doing this, but I just get this feeling that they are going to.  There are many devious and questionable things that Jacob has done, but the show has always painted them as for the good of the island.  But what if they aren’t?

I’m wondering if we are ever going to learn how Jacob and the MIB came to be on the island.  How did Jacob get the role as the “protector” of the island?  Was Jacob the first protector?  Was the MIB that Richard met the original?  Or has the MIB assumed many forms before that as well, as he has assumed the form of Locke?  Will Richard eventually die before the season is over?  Who is going to take the role of Jacob — if anyone?

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Oh, Sawyer.  You’re so pretty to look at.  Now, this was a story line that I actually found interesting.  In the flash sideways, Sawyer is a detective with the LAPD and his partner is Miles.  He also goes on a date with Charlotte, who works with Miles’ father at a museum.  He tells Charlotte that he decided to be a cop because he got to a point in his life where he could either be a criminal or a cop.  Was it Jacob pushing Sawyer (who goes by his real name, James Ford, in the flash sideways) to be a criminal?  Did Jacob set the things in motion that made Sawyer choose criminal?  Sawyer is still trying to hunt down the original con man Sawyer, the man who was the reason for his father killing his mother and himself.  At the end, a car crashes into a car with Sawyer and Miles and speeds off.  They catch up to the car, and guess who it was: Kate.

This brings up the issue again that maybe some things are just meant to happen.  Maybe Sawyer and Miles are always meant to work closely together: as detectives in the flash sideways and in the Dharma initiative in the original time line.  And maybe Sawyer and Kate were always meant to have a “tortured love affair”…gag me.  Maybe James Ford Sawyer is always meant to kill con man Sawyer as a form of revenge.

On the island, Flocke sends Sawyer on recon mission to Hydra island to take a look around the plane that brought everyone back to the island.  What he finds there are dead passengers and people with guns that take him to see Charles Whidmore, whose submarine landed there.  Sawyer offers to bring Flocke to Whidmore in exchange for safe passage off of the island for everyone else.  But when Sawyer gets back to Flocke, he tells him all about Whidmore so they can make a plan to surprise him.  But he then tells Kate that they are going to make Flocke and Whidmore fight as a distraction so they can steal the submarine and get off the island…we’ll see how this all works out.

In other news, Claire attacks Kate for taking Aaron and Sayid just sits there and watches.  Flocke pulls Claire off and tells her its inappropriate.  Flocke talks to Kate about how he had a crazy mother which made his childhood difficult and Kate should sympathize because Aaron now has a crazy mother.  This makes me think that Flocke’s mother was on the island with them and went “crazy” in a way similar to Claire and Rousseau.

I always like when Charles Whidmore is in episodes.  I find him interesting because, like most characters, I don’t know what he’s really playing at.  What is his end game?  Why does he want to island so much?  Why is everyone so scared of him?  How does Flocke know Whidmore?

I’m really excited for next week’s episode.  The teaser claims that Richard’s story is going to be told.  I’ll believe that when I see it, but it should be interesting enough to see a little bit about Richard’s past.

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Oh, Ben.  I’ve never really been that interested by Ben and this episode didn’t really make me any more interested in him.

In the flash sideways, we see Ben as a high school European History teacher.  We knew this already when we saw Locke’s flash sideways when he was a substitute teacher at that school…and we saw him again in this episode.  Locke tried to convince an unhappy Ben that he should be principal of the school because he obviously cares about the school and the students.  And guess who one of those students is!  Alex, Rousseau’s daughter that he claimed as his own on the island.  Ben is also caring for his elderly father.  In that scene we learn that his father still was a part of the Dharma initiative but they had decided to leave the island, obviously before it was blown up.  Ben’s father seems to think that Ben’s life would have been better if they had stayed on the island.  That’s debatable.

Back on the island, Ilana finds out that Ben is the one that killed Jacob and gets really pissed.  She ties Ben to a tree and makes him dig his own grave.  We find out that Ilana was either tasked by Jacob or believes she was tasked by Jacob to protect the candidates to replace him…we’ll see how that comes in later.  Jack and Hurley are making their way back to the Temple when they run into Richard.  Hurley gets really confused by Richard not aging.  Richard kind of explains this phenomenon as a “gift from Jacob.”  Richard wants to die, but he can’t kill himself so he asks Jack to do it for him, who surprisingly agrees.  But don’t worry, it wouldn’t be Jack if there wasn’t an ulterior motive.  Jack believes that because Jacob picked him and has been watching him since childhood that he can’t die, or something like that.  And he doesn’t, the dynamite doesn’t explode.

As Ben is digging his own grave, Flocke comes to visit.  Flocke tells Ben that he wants him to take over the island when Flocke and his merry band of followers leave the island and unties Ben from the tree.  Ben obviously thinks this is a good idea as he runs away.  When Ilana catches up to him, he gives a sappy speech about how he lost Alex and Jacob didn’t care.  Ben thinks that Flocke is the only one that will have him, but Ilana is obviously moved by his speech because she tells him that she will take him and walks away.  Ben realizes that people do like him and follows her back to the beach where that group also meets up with Jack, Hurley, and Richard.

And the big shocker at the end: there’s a submarine off the coast of the island that has none other than Charles Whidmore on board.  I was wondering when he was going to show up again.

I didn’t think this episode was bad, but it didn’t really impress me that much.  It was all about Ben complaining about not being appreciated by anyone.  In the flash sideways he has a PhD in European History and is teaching high school at a school where the principal dislikes him and threatens his students.  On the island, Jacob doesn’t care that Alex was killed (even though it was Ben’s fault) and Ilana is ready to kill him for killing Jacob.  No one wants him around.  Oh, poor Ben.  Maybe if you actually made the effort to be a good person more often, people would want you around.  Ben just felt very complaining throughout the whole episode, which did not endear me to his character any more.

I did like that the show actually talked about the fact that Richard doesn’t age and gave *some* answers to why that is.  I also liked that they explained why Ben was in the flash sideways.  He would have been on the island when it exploded, but according to his father, they left the Dharma initiative before that ever happened.

And Charles Whidmore.  Now there’s a character that I find interesting.  Not that I like the character, I just find him interesting.  Are we finally going to get to learn what his endgame is?  Why is he back at the island?  Where does he want to go on the island?  Are we going to get to see Penny and Desmond again?

Oh, Lost.  You excite me yet frustrate me at the same time.  You have (sometimes) interesting story lines but don’t answer the questions that I want answered.  Only 10 episodes left now (I think).  What is actually going to get answered and what are we going to be left hanging with?

*Note: I found the picture in this post and really like it.  The Lost cast in Last Supper-esque posing with Locke/Flocke as Jesus.  Great.

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This week’s episode of Lost was Sayid-centric, which made me happy as Sayid is one of the more interesting characters.

Let’s start off with the flash sideways this time.  In the flash sideways we learn that Nadia is married to Sayid’s brother, Omar.  But it is obvious that Sayid and Nadia have feelings for each other.  At one point we learn that Sayid actually pushed Nadia towards his brother instead of himself despite their feelings.  This makes me think that the reason Sayid did not end up on this island in this timeline is because he didn’t lose Nadia; that losing Nadia is what pushes Sayid (or makes him make the choices) towards the island.

It turns out that Omar borrowed money from some bad men.  These bad men put Omar in the hospital (Jack’s hospital, to be exact, as we see him in the hallway).  They pick up Sayid but Sayid is able to overpower them.  Then Sayid discovers that these men have Jin locked away in a storage room.  So in the flash sideways, we have seen Sayid’s connection to both Jack and Jin.

On the island, Dogen believes that Sayid should be dead and banishes him from the temple.  But just as Sayid is about to leave, Claire shows up to tell Dogen that “he wants to see you.”  Dogen sends Sayid instead as “him” (Flocke) will kill Dogen if he leaves the temple.  Dogen wants Sayid to kill Flocke but Sayid cannot let Flocke speak to him as then it will be “too late.”  Unfortunately Flocke says “hi”.  Sayid stabs him, but it has no effect.  Sayid returns to the temple with a message from Flocke: now that Jacob is dead, they don’t have to stay at the temple anymore, they are free to leave.  If they want to leave the island with Flocke, they have to meet him in the jungle before sundown and everyone who doesn’t meet him will be killed.

Mass panic ensues.  But Sayid has one more task.  He kills Dogen at sundown.  Dogen’s assistant person runs in screaming about how Dogen was the only thing keeping “him” out.  Smokey then terrorizes the temple, killing everything in its wake.  Claire and Kate are able to hide in the hole that the Others are keeping Claire in.  And Miles, Sun, and the others with Sun are able to escape through the secret passage that Jack and Hurley left through.  After all is said and done, Sayid leaves to meet up with Flocke along with Claire and Kate and they head off into the jungle.

In both timelines we see Sayid resorting to violence — he is going back to his old ways as a torturer in the Iraqi army.  Is this supposed to tell us that we can never really change?  Sayid is always going to be the violent, torturer in some way or another, no matter how hard he tries to deny it.

And I think this episode showed us a little more of how the flash sideways is working.  We saw that Sayid was still a tortured in the Iraqi army.  But that his life with Nadia never really existed.  Something in one of the timelines went wrong.  The question that I have is which timeline is it that went wrong?  Were they meant to be on the island and the flash sideways life shows how their “wrong decisions” made their lives go wrong and not end up on the island?  Or were they never meant to crash but their life went wrong when the ended up on the island?  My guess is that it is the first one, but you never really know what Lost is going to throw at you.  And I know I mention this every week, but I really want to know how the flash sideways is going to work out in the end.  Everyone’s flash sideways shows that their lives are in some way connected to the other people on the island even though they aren’t on the island.  Are they doing to start to realize that something isn’t right?  Are they going to start to remember things from the island?

So not only was this episode Sayid-centric, it did not have any awkward scenes between Jack and/or Kate and/or Sawyer — that just makes it all better.

But I have now developed a new theory as to the Man in Black (aka Flocke).  This may be a theory that others have expressed before, but I just came to it.  I think that the previous incarnation of the Man in Black was Christian Shepard.  This is why Claire was so willing to trust him when she ran off into the jungle.  And both Christian and Locke were dead upon arrival at the island, allowing the Man in Black to take their forms.

And then I just have some remaining questions at the end of this post…

What was the significance of the baseball that fell off the table and stopped the fight between Dogen and Sayid?  And then Dogen was holding it at the end when Sayid killed him.  Dogen told the story about how his son used to play baseball.  Is that how it all fits in?  But then why did it stop the fight between them?

Also, what’s so special about Dogen?  Why is he the one that is protecting the temple?  Most people thought that Jacob was protecting the temple from Smokey (based on Sayid’s message that now that Jacob’s dead they are free to leave), but it was really Dogen’s life that was protecting the temple.  Why?  What is so special about him?  But now he’s dead, so I don’t know if I will ever find out.

And finally, what’s Claire going to do now that she knows that Kate took Aaron?  She previously said that she would kill her.  And when Kate told her that she had Aaron, Claire looked pissed!  So what’s going to happen between them?

As meloukhia points out (who’s post you all should read as well), the season is officially one third over.  There’s not a lot left to Lost as a series.  How are they going to wrap everything up?  Or are they not going to and just leave us all hanging?  that is a distinct possibility.

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Guess what!  I have a tumblr now! You should read it.  It’s for a combination of shorter posts, personal stuff, and things that don’t quite fit into the themes of this blog.

this ain’t livin’: Female Celebrities Behaving Oddly?  It Must Be Mental Illness!

You are, literally, not in control of your own body when you are a female celebrity. Hollywood is sometimes called a fishbowl, especially for women, and it’s a very apt comparison. No place is safe. There is no escape. Private phone calls, emails, conversations, all can potentially be used against you and all of them are.

Equality 101: As a survivor of sexual assault…

Then let’s factor in the amount of people who have close friends, partners, or family members who have been sexually assaulted– now you’re talking a good portion of the classroom. Then there are the rest of the students, with various levels of exposure to discussions of sexual assault, and multiple opinions thereof. As the teacher, the compelling question becomes: how can we 1)have a discussion about this without serving as a trigger for those who have been assaulted, 2) respect the personal relationships many students may have with survivors of SA and 3) talk about it in a way that is relevant to the subject of the class?

Womanist Musings: Monstrous Musings: Patriarchal Baddies and Smokey Goodness? Musings on the Monsters of Lost

While Lost is certainly an improvement on most television shows in terms of diversity (and certainly 200x better than Disney), it seems white male privilege still rules the island. The show gives the most narrative attention to LWMs – or lost white males – and people of color are often presented stereotypically (Republican Guard/torturer Sayid, over-controlling and “English-challenged” Jin, simpleton Latino dude Hurley, folksy wisdom Ruth, oppressed Sun, etc).

Bitch Blogs: Need another reason to love Johnny Weir?

In response to two Quebecois commentators who spoke derogatorily of Weir and said he should take a gender test, Weir responded by issuing an awesome statement that touched on identity, free speech, life in the public eye, and the changing acceptance of gender, saying “I think masculinity and femininity is something that’s very old fashioned.”

Can we first just look at the cover of this week’s Entertainment Weekly?  Why is Jack protecting Claire?  Claire obviously doesn’t need protection.  But I guess Jack always needs to be the protector.  Big, strong Jack.  And why are they the only two on the cover?

Ok, anyways…

This week’s episode focused on Jack in the flash sideways and story lines alternating between Jack/Hurley and Claire/Jin.  (I guess the cover fits in that way, but I still don’t really like it.)  In the flash sideways, Jack is still looking for the lost coffin of his father and for his fathers will.  His mother finds the will and, guess what, Claire is in the will, but no one knows who she is!  Yay, potential reunion between Jack and Claire in the flash sideways!

Also, Jack has a son!  What?  Who is the mother?  Her name is never mentioned.  Is is Sarah, Jack’s ex-wife from the other timeline?  Or is it a completely different woman?  And it seems that Jack has a very similar relationship with his son that he had with his father, but he doesn’t want that and he doesn’t know why he has that.  But don’t worry, by the end of the episode, there was a touching moment between them.

On the island, Hurley is visited by Jacob again, who has another mission for him.  This time he has to get Jack to come with him to a lighthouse.  He convinces Jack to go by saying that Jacob said that “he has what it takes.”  This gets Jack’s attention as is paralleled in the flash sideways where Jack talks about how his father always told him that he didn’t have what it takes.  At the lighthouse, they discover a contraption similar to an old-fashioned lighthouse light.  Each degree has a name with it (some are crossed off) like in the cave that Flocke (Man in Black Locke, I’m liking this name for him) took Sawyer too.  When the mirrors are set to a certain degree/name, the mirror displays images of those people’s lives.  This is how Jacob watched everyone and influenced their decisions which led them to the island.  Jacob wanted Jack to see this so that Jack understood that he was important and had a job to do on the island.  But Jack has to figure out what this job is on his own.

Jacob also tells Hurley that he wanted to get both him and Jack away from the temple because something bad was coming there.  Could this be Flocke?  Is Jacob scared that Flocke is going to hurt/kill everyone at the temple?  Or turn everyone at the temple against Jacob?  Who knows…

Claire rescues Jin from one of her bear traps.  Now, remember, the Others think that she has been possessed by a darkness.  Claire thinks that the Others have Aaron and she wants Aaron back.  She talks about how both her father and her “friend” have told her that the Others have Aaron.  In order to save one of the Others, Jin tells Claire that Kate took Aaron off the island and he is now three years old.  Claire kills the Other anyways and Jin tells her that he was lying — that the Others really do have Aaron.

Why?  Why is Jin telling her this?  Why does Jin want to break Claire back into the temple?  What is the end game?  At the end, Flocke walks into Claire’s camp.  Jin calls him “John” but Claire corrects him, saying, “That’s not John, that’s my friend” (to which she referenced earlier).  So has the Man in Black had the form of Locke for a while now?  He was off the island for three years so there was no danger of Locke running into Flocke is Flocke was running around the island helping Claire.

I really hate the relationship between Jack and Kate.  We see them together for about a minute this episode when they run into each other in the jungle.  And it’s always just so awkward and forced.  I don’t know if it’s the acting or the characters, but I really can’t stand them together.  And the fact that Jack always has to act as the protector, especially around Kate.  Grrrr.

I’m excited to see more of Claire.  I have missed her in the series and I really want to know what the end games of Jin and Flocke are.  I wonder if the same thing that happened to Rousseau in the jungle is what happened to Claire.  There are definite similarities between them.  They have similar physical looks in terms of hair and clothes style.  They both use bear traps in the jungle.  They both think that the Others have their babies (in Rousseau’s case, this was true, but not in Claire’s).  I wonder what other similarities we are going to see brought up.

Also check out meloukhia’s review up at this ain’t livin’.

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FWD/Forward: Why I Am Not Riled About Every Instance of Crip Drag

This argument comes up in response to critiques of disability in pop culture. It’s often accompanied with the assumption that the writer doesn’t think that it’s ok to portray disability in pop culture ever, or that the writer thinks that only disabled actors should be in disabled roles. This line of thinking, which focuses on which representations of disability people happen to be critiquing at a given time, ignores the structural nature of the critique. It is also accompanied by the implication that it is necessary to do everything at once when it comes to critiquing pop culture.

FWD/Forward: The Island That Heals: Lost, John Locke, and Disability

We were introduced to Locke in the pilot as the man in the wheelchair who walks again as soon as he lands on the Island. This becomes a recurring theme in the series; the Island heals people who are meant to be there, evidently, so John is rewarded for reaching the Island by being cured. At several points in the series, Locke experiences a recurrence of his injury, almost as a warning, before recovering the ability to walk again without any explanation.

The Sexist: Sexist Beatdown: The LOST Women of LOST Edition

In this edition of Sexist Beatdown, Sady Doyle of Tiger Beatdown and I reconvene to solve the enduring mystery of ABC’s LOST: Why have all the compelling female characters been systematically eliminated from the plot, while Jack is allowed to live on as Dr. McFixALot, a character who exists only to fail unspectacularly at everything and shoot enduring looks at Kate?

Viva la Feminista: Women Olympians Face Unique Challenges

The only Winter Olympics event in which women cannot compete is ski jumping. Why? Apparently it’s because women are “too fragile,” along with an outdated system of rules that allow the International Olympic Committee to keep “American Lindsey Van, who holds the world record for the single longest jump by anyone, male or female” from competing for a gold medal. When the IOC tries to explain that women can’t compete because there aren’t enough women jumping, the conversation circles around to, How can we increase interest and participation if women’s ski jumping isn’t allowed at the Olympics?