Thursday, January 22, 2009

L-O-S-T, Season 5, Episodes 1 and 2 ("Because You Left"/"The Lie")

First off, take a look at Doc Jensen's recap article on EW, then check out the second episode's recap from Doc Jensen.

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JJ Started Season 5's beginning discussion:

one word:

Wow. The Writer's are STILL surprising me. I didn't see the Time skipping thing coming at all and think it's an absolutely brilliant tactic, not only as a reason to get the O'6 back to the island, but also to explore the island's past...

First of all, i'm not confused. no, i'm not confused at all. I am worried that this is a very big risk storytelling-wise for the show... the flashforwards and flashbacks were easy to grasp with the "whooosh" sound as our queue and being able to follow that easily, but the complexity of the sheer number of points in time to follow now might be too much for your average L O S T audience member, who is not all into following all the details, and they might think it's just too confusing or too hard to keep up with and tune out... i hope not, but i can see it happening. i think it's brilliant and daring on their part, but they are taking a big risk.

ok, anyway, let's start with "Because You Left." i'm thrilled we don't have to endure a "weekend at Bernie's" with them carting Locke's body everywhere they go. that would be silly. and it's totally fascinating how Benry has people ALL OVER THE WORLD who know him and will drop everything to do exactly what he says... was all this part of his PLAN that he mentions to Locke in the season 4 finale before they head into the Orchid? did he intend for the island to skip in time and use it against the Losties to get them all to stay there/bring them back, etc. and put all the people in place ahead of time? maybe. Ben is a total psycho genius.... Then seeing that Sayid is NO LONGER Ben's errand boy was another cool twist. how about that fight at the safe house? i don't think i've ever seen a dude actually hit the pavement before in a fall (tv OR movies!) and then body slamming that other dude on the knives. quite a fight scene. and to have Hurley being the fall guy just because he's with Sayid, clever, clever. he is "crazy" after all.... now he's a rich lunatic killing people all over LA. another great storyline to suck us in quickly. Hurley's scenes in both eps had me laughing out loud all night. Then The Widmore and Sun exchange was very interesting. He is a lot more than she bargained for already. is Sun up for really being as hard core as she is seeming to come off right now? we'll see... and i am SURE that Sun is the source of the legal action for the blood test against Kate/Aaron.

Opening Scence: harkening back to the reveal of Desmond in the hatch in season 2, we got to see old Doctor Candle/Wickmond/Halliwax wake up and do his morning routine and then doing a classic Dharma film. and for the Arrow! and the Arrow being a military strategy station! interesting... and then he's off to the Orchid to deal with an unforseen problem, we get a peak that they have detected the frozen donkey wheel during construction, but don't access it by The Dr.'s orders... and then FARADAY SHOWS UP. absoute mind blower.... so is Faraday there because of the island/them is/are skipping in time right now? or was Faraday part of Dharma at one time in the past and that was part of his time travel research? hmmmm. Plus, Faraday dropping a new super important memory into Desmond's head was great. we heard that Desmond is unique in all the time hopping craziness. so i fear greatly now for he and Penny, and not because Ben wants to kill her... i think that Mrs. Hawking is Faraday's mom, by the way....

then the time jumping with the island... again, genius. i've been speculating on when the island would have moved to and hoping that we'd see the Dharma Inititive again, or maybe Adam and Eve from the caves, or perhaps the Others worshipping the four-toed statue, or how about the arrival of the Black Rock. well NOW we might get to see all of those things flashing at us in quick succession! awesome. and this way they could use it to answer TONS of questions very quickly. will they? i sooo hope so, but we shall see. having Faraday there to tell us what's happening is another ingenius set up for his character. he is now the smartest, most important guy on the show and we as the audience as well as the Losties are now counting on him to be our constant and keep us all from going totally crazy trying to follow everything.... tricky and risky, but very good stuff. plus Locke's exchanges with Richard were fascinating. during their scene, i realized that Locke never got the chance, and therefore WE never got the chance to learn all the island's mysteries from Richard telling them all to Locke once he took Ben's place, because turning the wheel jacked everything up. well now Locke is told he must leave the island and die or they'll be stuck that way for good. Locke never got to be leader, never got any answers, never learned anything about the island that heals him and changes his life, yet he STILL will leave it and die for it. what is the story with Locke? why has he already lost his place we thought he was intended for all this time?

"The Lie" had me laughing out loud and loving Hurley more than ever. First, his acting was superb throughout. when he stars down Sayid on Penny's boat and tells him a day will come when he needs his help and he won't give it because Sayid didn't back him up on NOT lying to everyone was excellent. he looked totally different. something in his eyes became someone else, someone not Hurley to me. not the Hurley we know, and i got chills. THen we he confessed everything to his mom and he was so wracked with guilt and despair and fear. outstanding performance. Give Jorge Garcia his Emmy now, please. plus he was still funny and through a hot pocket and totally stuck it to Benry. awesome and hysterical.

seeing the meeting on Penny's boat about The Lie was great, and seeing Lapidus, too. good to see that people are not being forgotten. plus we got a fun and entertaining episode with Hurley trying to be on the run, care for incapacitated Sayid, fight and hedge with his parents, confront Benry, AND have a visit from Ana Lucia. that was awesome. i new she was going to appear in this episode due to casting news that was leaked, but i expected to see her in her old island attire with bloody bullet riddled chest and say something cryptic. i didn't expect to see her be all hard ass cop again and give Hurley get away instructions. awesome. plus a shout out to Libby for Hugo. nice. this has me thinking that we could literally see any character at any moment... we have undead ghosts off the island, we have undead ghosts on the island, we have time freaking out all over the place so anyone from the past could show up and be alive and well any second. welcome to L O S T totally blasting the rules of storytelling completely out of the water..

finally we saw Mr's Hawking frantically doing calculations and marking points on the earth and playing with chalk-tipped pendulums. Benry comes to see her, surprise surprise, and she gives us all a deadline... L OS T is back everyone. I could not have asked for more to try and wrap my brain around, and i'm so glad we got more than one episode last night. just seeing the first one by itself without the second one would have had us so frustrated. they were brilliant to pair them up and keep us enthralled. let's get talking....

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Neil:
Episode one was great, two was good. I think that the military group at the end of two was Roussau's group and they are 16+ years in the past on the island. The scene with Dan at the DI station, I think was shown to us out of chronological order and that will come back up later in the year, possibly last episode or so.

Anonymous said...

JJ:
plus, i wonder if the O'6 will make it back to the island piggy-backing onto a Dharma food drop! that would be unexpected.
but then again, Locke entered 77 and blew the Flame to kingdom come, so maybe there are no more food drops going on.

Anonymous said...

Neil:
What is with Mrs. Hawking and monasteries and churches??? Is this some Highlander safe zone or what.

Anonymous said...

JJ:
i thought those military dudes at the end might be the guys who find the island waaaaaay back and then one of them ends up in the mental hospital to be the original source of the numbers for Hurley. remember? one of them was in the mental hospital playing connect four with Hurley and muttering the numbers and nothing else, and that's what Hurley plays the lottery with... and anther one of them went to live in Australia, which is why Hurley went there to begin with. i NEVER thought we could possibly see those guys story on the island... now it may not even be those guys we saw, but that's who i thought of... then i wondered that it must not be them since Locke killed them. that would alter the future, and they told us that can't happen within the time "rules" of the show. so who were those guys after all?

Anonymous said...

JJ:

Highlander rules.


there can be only one, Niel.

Anonymous said...

Niel:

I thought that as well, but remember Roussaus's group did die..? And the first guy did mention, "what are you doing on our island" I thought it was crazy that Locke runs into Ethan and the whole beechcraft crashing. We see Charlotte is going to be kicking the bucket pretty soon with the nose bleeds and memory problems.

Anonymous said...

Niel:
70 hours is not a lot of time to get the 6 back together.

Anonymous said...

JJ:
where was Aaron during the big Lie meeting on Penny's boat? he didn't get a say at all...
(Niel, be sure to add these folks so they can see the thoughts voicing, too)

Anonymous said...

Troy:
do we know for sure if the meeting on penny's boat was in the future or could it have been in the past?

Anonymous said...

Niel:
It flashed "3 years earlier" before that scene.

Anonymous said...

Troy:

Okay, thanks... I missed that.

Anonymous said...

Frank:
I liked the episode a lot. I agree, they're taking a risk with the storytelling, but I think the way they're doing it makes sense. After the first 45 mins, I turned to my wife and asked what she thought so far and we agreed that while there's some strange stuff happening, it's pretty easy to follow. Not 'easy to understand', but it's pretty straight forward whats happening - and I think the record skipping (nice forshadowing at the opening of the episode with the record skipping) and the 'imagine time being a string' explanations dumbed it down for everyone who is watching that that's the way it is.

And then Farraday planting the new memory in Desmond's head was clever.

It was fun seeing Frogut ("It's Neil!") again. "And you can't even make fire!" THWAAT! Good stuff.

So the island is going back and forth in time, right? So we can, in theory, go back to prehistoric time, and forward to... who knows what, spaceships and whatnot.

The discussion in this email thread has speculated who are the people who drew the guns on James "Can I borrow a shirt?" Sawyer and Juliet "Replacement Kate" Burke. Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't they still in the same time-frame as when Faraday talked with Desmond? So where does that put us in the Dharma/Post-Dhamra period? They couldn't be pre-Dharma, could they? And I was half expecting/hoping that the flaming arrows (WTF?) were going to be coming from The Black Rock.

Was nice to see Hurley's mom believing him. That's a huge thing for Hurley - for someone to believe he's not crazy.

I liked it when Richard Alpert gave Locke the compass -- and when Locke said "What's this do?" and Alpert says "It points north, John." Also, with the time shifting, we get a bit more clarification as to how/why the others have been telling Locke that "We've been expecting you".

I find myself caring less and less about post-island stuff now and want to see full episodes of just the madness going on on the island.

Anonymous said...

Niel:
With the island moving I wonder if people that have been on it previously can possibly stay on it as it moves in and out of time? Ever see My Science Project from the 80's? How about Ana Lucia pulling Hurley over and tellinghim Libby said hello??? If you are not going to bring Libby back at all why keep teasing us?

Anonymous said...

JJ:
Buzz, i agree. i felt that the off island stories were so loss interesting than the island ones... but i guess it's always been that way, even with the flashbacks/forwards, the island was always more engaging.


i think there was a flash between Faraday and co at the Swan station to meet Des and then Juliet and Sawyer meeting the army men... i'll have to watch it again, but i think it went like this:


the whole group is at the Swan during the day, they leave but Farady lags to talk to Des
then we have Faraday arrive back at the beach at night and Sawyer asks what took him two hours to get back
then everyone is at the beach and the flaming arrow attack happened, and they ran. flash, but still night time.
then Juliet and Sawyer are seperated from the group and run into the army men...


some of that doesn't sound right now, but i think the shifts between day and night and weather conditions are intended to be our queues to know that time has shifted again, on top of the light flashes. i'm pretty sure the army men, judging by their attire dated pre-Dharma and maybe even. they looked like WWII era uniforms to me.

Anonymous said...

Amy:
The only part that I found to be corny was when they suddenly started showing a bunch of extras. I knew something bad was coming and that a lot of people were going to die. 5 seconds later the fire arrows started....

Any time you see extras on LOST you can pretty much assume a huge massacre is about to happen....

Anonymous said...

Niel:
HAHAHAHA, Frogurt complains about the fire and I told my wife he is about to die, thwamp, burning arrow in the chest. We will not call him by his name since he has a cool name and they gave it to such a crappy character.

Anonymous said...

Frank:
LOST needs to be careful (too late?) to not slip into a problem that Heroes has. Heroes, for those that don't know, has a time traveler that can travel forward and backward in time. The problem with that is, no one's death is permanent. Granted, the guy in Heroes can bring people forward and backward with him, so if someone's dead, theoritcally he could go back 20min, grab ahold of he-who-will-be-dead, and bring them forward.

I know LOST has tiptoed around this for a long time with 'ghosts' and reappearance of previously departed people, but a lot of that was in flashbacks. Now, we're going to be able to have our main characters interact with all types of people. Ethan (as seen), Ben's dad, Eko, Libby, the stewardess who dissappared when we first met tail section castaways. I trust the writers will do it better and avoid the traps of Heroes, but it's something to be careful of.

Anonymous said...

Frank:
He's a bit of an inside joke in LOST. He appeared in a few of the webisodes where he competed with Hurley for Libby - and is a somewhat wellknown extra/character actor. I think showing him was a nod to long time fans - and then gave him a sweet death. "thwamp"? really? I thought it was more of a THWWAATTCK!!

Anonymous said...

Niel:
I saw that web episode and laughed my head off, I don't know I think it could have a thwamp, being on fire and all.

Anonymous said...

Heather:
Agreed... Ben coyly didn't answer Jack when he asked if Locke was dead.

I thought it was really intereresting that the Others don't bounce in time....they are almost part of the island that they are on at that time? Once the O6 are back, does that mean that they will complete the set and the Flight 815 people will integrate with the others officially? How does them coming back stop the world from destruction?


Also, um, who was shooting the flaming arrows? Pirates from the Black Rock? The Others?

Anonymous said...

JJ:
anyway, i think they have made it pretty clear that once someone is dead on L O S T, they are indeed dead. now manifestations of them by the island are another matter... but if people like Goodwin and Ethan and Boone and Libby are dead and that's that, well, then there you go. the others seem to be pretty upset when someone bites it, so death must be real for them as much as for aonyone else. anyway, the Doc Jensen's for today are LOOOOOONG, but really good... check them out.

Anonymous said...

Frank:
People will begin to interact with people who up until now, have died. I understand that Hurley talks with Charlie, Libby, Eko, Anna Lucia, thats fine, they're spirits/ghosts/whatever.

But with time travel, we now have the ability to see LockeAlive talk with AnnaLucieAlive, for example... I mean, paradox and rules and such, it could still happen. The writers need to (..and I'm sure they will) be careful not to make us get desensitized to characters dying.

Anonymous said...

JJ:
wanted to say two more points: Sawyer was great. seeing him display anger and impatience in the midst of his guilt and grief over the freighter blowing up was all really good stuff. him slapping Faraday and threatening the same to Charlotte was awesome. Sawyer rules.


also, remember that Daniel said either the island is skipping in time, or THEY are. if they are, then that might explain how anyone outside of the FLight 815 survivrs is not skipping through time. Ben said that whoever leaves together, has to return together, perhaps when groups arrive on the island, that group of "destined" people are supposed to remain an intact group on the island (including the dead) or things get nuts. that's why Christian Shepard is walking around and Locke has to go back with them, i wonder....


anyway, peace out.

Anonymous said...

Julia:

I was blown away (no exploding hatch or freighter puns intended) by these first two episodes...and have to strongly recommend that everyone read Doc Jensen's recaps (he does a separate one for each hour) over at ew.com. And I need to watch both hours again…I’m sure I missed a lot of little stuff.

As leery as I've been about the whole time travel storyline, I do think they are doing a good job on it...I'm still nervous that it will turn into Quantum Leap with the castaways in the Scoot Bakula role of jumping all over the place, but I'm going to trust the writers that they have a plan and it will all work out.

My favorite part about LOST is always how all of the little details tie together in some way, and these episodes were perfect examples of that...Locke seeing Eko's brother's plane crash...Alpert giving Locke the compass he tried to get him to select as a boy...Ana Lucia showing up in Hurley's hallucination as a cop, helping him to get away, etc. Love those little details and how nothing on the show is insignificant...it rewards those of us who are addicted to the show.

Anyway, here are my quick thoughts:

1. I think that Sun is the "mystery client" behind the lawyers wanting a blood sample...she thinks Kate took Jin away from her and now wants to take Aaron away as payback, all while pretending to be her friend. She definitely seems to be moving to the dark side, but the question is whether she is truly in league with Widmore or has her own agenda.

2. Because of all of the jumping around through time, at what point will the Losties land at a time where they run into their past or future selves? Will they be able to watch Flight 815 crash? I saw some speculation on ew.com that the source of the “whispers” in the jungle will be the time travel Losties observing themselves in another time. For you Harry Potter fans, you know the rule: you must not be seen.

3. Very curious about who was shooting the flaming arrows…at the time I just assumed it was the Hostiles aka the Others but who knows?

4. Is Dr. Chang’s baby from the opening scene the freighter guy who can talk to dead people? Does that mean all 3 of the current freighter folk have been on the island before? Remember that the theory is Charlotte ’s mom was on the island, which makes her forgetting the maiden name a little more significant.

5. Jack must truly be at rock bottom to get into league with Ben so quickly…or did Locke in the coffin just spook him that badly?

6. Faraday’s mom HAS to be Ms. Hawking…explains a lot about his obsession with time travel. Can’t wait to hear her backstory.

7. LOVED Hurley trying to explain everything to his mom…it sounded like me trying to convince my boyfriend to watch the show with me.

The thing that still is resonating with me is Hurley throughout these two episodes...if you watched or read the EW interviews with Cuse and Lindelof, they verified that Hurley is often the audience's representative, questioning things, etc. He is also pretty much the show’s moral center, which I think is interesting given Jack could have been seen in that role initially. But here is Hurley, not wanting to lie, refusing to align with Ben, etc.

Overall GREAT episodes and I cannot wait for next week!

Anonymous said...

Heather:

Also, I'd like to point out that Sawyer didn't have his shirt on for much of the show, I'm sure we were all hoping all his attempts to find one would be thwarted. I can't believe someone hasn't mentioned this earlier.

Anonymous said...

Liz:

couple things (1) the Sawyer shirtless-against-his-will and in-search-of-a-shirt thing was pretty
amusing, that should be a motif all season; (2) i heard some of NPR in a cab that said based on what they were sent to watch, this could be called the "Season of Sawyer"--maybe a lot of the on-island action focuses on him? (3) Hurley describing @ parent's house what all had happened to them was funny as hell--the every 108 minute thing, i never really understood that (he says) (4) it was definitely strong, i'm into it again--