'Lost': 8 more things you need to know about 'LA X'
Going to try and do something new this year after each and every episode of "Lost" here on the blog. I'm going to try and use the entry after each recap to do three things: 1) Clarify thoughts that might not have come through as clearly as I would have liked the first time around, 2) Expand/enhance thoughts in the recap, having had more time to think them over, and 3) Quickly cover anything new that popped up in the interim.
Something you should know, or at least be reminded of, concerning the recaps: They are an honest and instantaneous reaction to a new episode. It would be great to have the luxury of spending a week cultivating my thoughts, writing and rewriting my recap to the sharpest of edges. But I don't. Both you and TPTB want and need a reaction as soon as possible, and thus I lay down the tracks of thought as furiously as I can with the train that is "Lost" right behind me.
Hopefully this new series of postmortem-esque entries will alleviate some of the pitfalls inherent to producing and posting a recap in so quick a turnaround. I haven't come up with a flashy title for the series yet, but I'm open to suggestion. Know that it'll be eight things each week that will be covered, running the gamut from the super serious to the super silly. Other than that, no rules apply.
After the show aired, Darlton confirmed that they call the new narrative technique "flash-sideways." More than a few readers took issue with my terming it an "Alternate Reality" in my recap, suggesting that such a moniker cheapened that timeline. Wasn't my intent, but at least now I know how to properly term them thanks to Damon and Carlton. Also now thanks to them, I can look forward to Paul Giamatti complaining that the Dharma boxed wine is Merlot.
We need to kill the "Sayid = Jacob" theory right now. I have a huge article coming this Sunday about this very topic, but it's too simplistic, reductive, and plain ol' wrong. The way in which The Man in Black achieved his loophole did not revolve around the Island's regenerative springs inside The Temple. Those springs might be RELATED to Jacob, but they don't turn you into him. As a preview for Sunday's article: Given Dogan's test of the water via his slit hand, would that place be perfect for say, Ilana after her off-Island injuries seen in "The Incident"?
Another article that needs to be written by yours truly concerns the intersection of the monster, the cabin, the Temple, the ash, the events surrounding Danielle's crew in 1988, and the real estate deals concocted/maintained by Jacob, The Man in Black, and The Others. I will confess that squaring this circle has me currently flummoxed. It's like one of those puzzles where you think you see the light at the end of the tunnel, only it's an oncoming train, and the train's made of smoke and psychic lightning. Lennon stated in "LA X" that the circle of ash was meant to keep things out, not in. That contradicts my old theory that the circle of ash around the cabin maintained The Man in Black inside. But it still seems likely that it was The Man in Black that asked Locke for help in "The Man Behind the Curtain."
Even more puzzling: why, in 1988, was the Monster seemingly living in the outer walls of the one safe place on the Island for Jacob's people? Seems like a massive unsafe place to live. My insta-theory: The silent movement of the Others was a byproduct of having to sneak around the Monster, which acted as a security system, sure, but an UNWILLING ONE, obeying only because it had to do so, not because it wanted to do so. "Finding the loophole" meant not only breaking the cycle of humans continually mucking up the Island, but The Man in Black's indentured servitude to Jacob.
Hopefully, a lot of this will get cleared up once we find out what The Man in Black's home is. Is it inside the temple? Or off-Island? The latter reminds me of my fantastically incorrect theory when I first starting writing for Zap2it that "Cloverfield" was actually a "Lost" movie. At the time, promos for the movie came out right after Season 3 ended, so I thought Jack turned into a bearded alcoholic due to unwittingly releasing Smokey into the world when he and Kate left. Awesome theory, if I do say so myself. Awesomely WRONG theory. But still. Moving on.
It bears noting that, although we don't know the specifics of what happened, that Jughead's detonation did not destroy the Island. It might have destroyed the energy, which acted almost like a purple, glowing flotation device keeping the Island buoyant. After all, New Otherton and the remains of Tawaret were intact on the bottom of the ocean. Looks like Faraday's negation plan failed to take into consideration that the energy not only kept the Island moving, but kept it above water as well.
Why did the Locke/Jack scene in LAX (the airport) make me so damn happy? Because it shows that my hopes for these two this season were not unfounded. Read my original take on the pair here, and my debate about them with Zap2it's Rick Porter here. I look forward to Jack and Locke finally fusing into men of science and faith, side by side. After that, they can help the Sideways Walter Bishop cross over and reclaim Peter. (Little "Fringe" humor there, for those that watch both shows. Which you should. Because "Fringe" is incredible.)
Say what you want about the little deviations in the Sideways Universe (Jack gets one bottle of vodka, Des is on the plane, Shannon is not), but what's important to remember is that these universes both exist alongside each other and occasionally touch each other. Watch the episode again and focus particularly on Jack, who seems to be just slightly on the verge of realizing what's going on. (To a lesser extent, Rose and Bernard seem to know more than they let on. And I LOVE the idea offered by some online that Juliet was asking Sideways Sawyer out on a coffee date at the same time she talked about it in the pit.) Watch how the universe seems keen on either repeating previous actions with slight variations (Edward Mars still suffers an acute head injury, but this time in a bathroom) as well as pushing certain people toward each other (Aaron's two mothers just happen to share a cab.) Above all else, just be happy Bai Ling wasn't an Oceanic flight attendant in the Sideways Universe. That would have made Faraday's plan the worst application of science to solve society's problems since the invention of the Slap Chop.
One thing I absolutely should have honed in on in my recap? Hurley's leadership and assertiveness. Hot damn, that was awesome. Not only did Jacob trust him above all others to bear his message to Dogan, but he showed a fantastic focus in dealing with the madness around him by simply accepting it and seeking to solve the next problem. It makes me feel much better about this earlier prediction about his ultimate role in the show.
My truly random thoughts after this week's episodes are twofold. First up, music suggestions! Each week I'll suggest songs to listen to in light of recent episodes. Your homework this week: The Beatles' "I'm Looking Through You," in honor of Jack looking at himself in the mirror (and potentially into the other timeline) aboard Oceanic 815, and Peter Gabriel's "Secret World," whose title is only the start of thematically-related lyrics that apply to "LA X."
Secondly: I need a cast member of "Lost" to host an episode of "Saturday Night Live" before the season finale. Why? So we can get some "Lost"-related MacGruber sketches, that's why! Come on, how funny would it be see Terry O'Quinn hosting, with Mr. TNT himself John Locke dealing with both explosives and MacGruber's shortcomings. All the while, Kristen Wiig can scream things like, "We've only got twenty seconds until The Incident, MacGruber!"
If you have any suggestions for the title for this weekly series, or want to discuss anything that has occurred to you since last night, leave them in the comments below!
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Photo credit: ABC