The Last Season

The Last Season
One Dark and One Light...

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Mr. Indestructable

We meet this guy for the first time on a black and white TV monitor in the Pearl. My first reaction was, how did Snake Plisskin get on LOST island? Locke's comment, delivered as dry as toast": "Well, I guess he'll be expecting us."

Yep, as Sayid found out the hard way, our crafty russian cyclops was indeed awaiting them. So Mikhail got in the first shot, but it's been all uphill from there for him. First he fights with Sayid inside the Flame station and loses. Then he gets taken prisoner and marched out to the fence where Locke gives him the bums rush into the sonic fence.

A very cool scene indeed with Patchy foaming from the mouth and bleeding from the ears and Oh Yea, stopping to say "thank you" to Locke.


Thank you for what? and why was Ms. Klugh so eager to take a bullet back at the flame?

Now I suspect Patchy knew he wasn't gonna die by being tossed into the fence. He was just putting on a show for the tourists. But the next time he shows up is miles and days away within spitting distance of where Naomi parachutes down into the trees. I mean Hurley's flare barely burns out and there comes Patchy scampering out of the jungle all surprised as hell that the losties are there. Hmmm.

Here comes ass whupping number two as Jin lays the Kung Fu law down to the cyclops. I was actually cheering on the edge of my couch as this was happening. Patchy shows he's a bit of a klepto as he tries to five finger the SAT phone but Jin catches up and Patchy decides one time is enough and coughs up the phone.

So the next time our mystery russian shows up he is barrelling into the other's campsite who happen to be on their way to the Temple. Wait a minute, they didn't decide to leave until after Patchy got his brains scrambled at the fence, so how did he know where to find Ben and the gang?

He didn't have a walky, because he obviously hadn't contacted Ben. As soon as Ben lays eyes on him he asks him why he isn't dead.

Now comes ass whupping number three. Oh how delighted I was watching Locke beat the snot out of Mikhail. Yea Baby! Nobody stepped up to help Patchy, even though Ben asked them to.
By the time Ben tells Mikhail to go to the Looking Glass, he appears to be mostly healed from Lockes beatdown.

Next our intrepid island communications man dons his diving gear and goes in search of our hero rock star. What does he find instead? That he's been pawned by Ben all along and his own communications have been jammed. (He also thought Greta and Bonnie were in Canada, that will be a whole other column)

So here it's Desmonds turn to inflict damage on Mikhail. Let's see, maybe a spear through the chest, hey it always worked in Bond movies. They are designed to kill 1200 lb sharks, so you think it would slow down Patchy? no way...

This guy with his chest fully ventilated with an extra airhole and about 90 feet of water pressure above him he manages to swim out to the side of the Looking Glass and sets off a hand grenade, but not before showing it to Charlie and waving goodbye.

This is the Super Soldier Mulder and Scully were looking for all those years ago.

Is it goodbye? I honestly don't think so. It would be a hoot to see Patchy survive again. I want to see more losties kick his ass. I bet Kate or Sun could take him, and Sawyer hasn't had his turn yet.

Let's look at Mikhail for a moment. Was he born on the island? NO. It was clear both from the russian literature scattered around the Flame and from confirmation from TPTB that everything Mikhail said was true except for him being a member of the Dharma initiative. So this means Mikhail was recruited to the island. This rules him out as an island native. So where exactly does he get his super regenerative powers? I Don't Know. He seems to be quite literate and fluent in multiple languages ( he understood Naomi), always a good thing to have in a communications officer. Is he dead? I Doubt It.

Whats my theory? Well, I think the island gave him extraordinary healing powers because at some point he made a sacrifice ( his eye ) to the island. Maybe in the fight with Dharma, I don't know when, but at some point (much like the island gave Desmond foresight) he was chosen.
I think Richard Alpert might also have been chosen, after all he doesn't appear to age. Although this might have been not intended. Mikhail was chosen to defend the island, and until he accomplishes his mission, he will not die.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Universal Course Correction

As reader Cheryl pointed out I was mistaken in my belief that the skeletons in the cave were wearing Dharma uniforms. A quick replay of "House of the Rising Sun" proved the skeletons were guessed by Jack to about 50 years old. Hmmmmm.

Now I would have to say that makes the possibility of these bodies those of Amelia and Fred. Intrepid global aviators of yesteryear. Interesting that the aircraft they flew on their voyage ( Lockheed Electra) was almost identical to the one Eko's brother crashed in. I wonder if the plane was intended for a different purpose and repurposed when the Eko storyline came along?

Was this just a little inside joke by the writers, and we will never know who they were, or will this be a relevant piece of the mythology? Remember they did have the two stones, one black and one white, a recurring theme in this show.


Monday, June 25, 2007

Riddle me this, Batman

So much stuff to think about. Does it all count? or are some of these just dead ends?

It's a puzzle, but I can't seem to make the pieces fit together. How does the Jacob piece fit into the Smokey piece. I keep sorting through fragments of items and wondering how they relate to one another.

On a number of occasions we've heard the whispers. I've read the transcripts and it seems as though losties are watching losties, but from a detached point of view.


What the hell are these whispers? Is this place haunted? Should we be calling the boys from "Supernatural" over?

All these fan sites are asking is who is Jacob? I want to know What is Jacob! Is this a trapped native? Is it the Island spirit itself? It looks like Locke with a bad wig, but who knows. If Ben can see Jacob clearly, then he would recognize him as Locke, so I don't think that's who it is.
Besides I don't buy into the time loop theory. So many theories suggest time resets or loops and this all happens over and over. Nah, I don't buy it, The Black Pearl oops I mean The Black Rock would keep crashing over and over. I think that by inference from the Others themselves, Jacob must have been on this island before the plane crashed. Remember Ben and Juliette arguing about Jacob healing her sister? That was prior to the 815 crash so how could it be Locke or Jack as some theorize??

Smokey sure is an enigma. I had to laugh out loud the first time I read the nanobot theory. This thing was supposedly created in the 80's? The incident happened in 1984 so they built a sonic fence to keep Smokey out. How would they know that a sonic fence would keep Smokey out? Does anyone seriously think anybody on the planet had nanobot technology in the 1980's? I think maybe Dharma used the 'Virus' as a cover story to keep their folks from wandering around and getting pummeled by Smokey (Cerberus).

When these guys from Naomi's ship come parachuting onto the island, I think Smokey is gonna whup the snot out of 'em.

TPTB have now said that Desmond really did travel back in time to 1996. Hmmmm. Mentally, Spiritually, or Physically? Did he create a new timeline? John Locke was in the Hatch when it imploded, why didn't he go back in time? The picture that Naomi was carrying seems to indicate there was some side effect to Desmond's trip. There have been a number of clues that there is indeed something going on with time or reality changing. I hope these aren't dead ends.

Two skeletons. But wait, they are wearing Dharma uniforms. HUH? I don't think the polar bears dragged them there, and since they had the marbles in their hand these two must have some kind of significance to the story. oooh my head is starting to hurt.

How the hell do all these puzzle pieces fit together?

Feel free to post comments, I'd like to read what you think.


Kudos to the LOST team

There are really three things that take this show from ordinary to the level of extraordinary.

Amazing writing - these guys are able to create a very textured and layered story. And raise the bar almost every week. Sure there are some little sidetracks to the story (Nikki and Paulo) and even a few dead ends (Anna Lucia and Eko) but even then, they manage to tie in enough island mythology to keep the story chugging forward. It's great when we see something in season three that nicely wraps up a question or mystery from season 1. With one exception (Jack's Tatoos, seriously - who cares) We know this is all building to a payoff.

Terrific Acting - Wow, they have the best casting people. I actually loathe Ben, although I think Michael Emerson deserves an EMMY. Elizabeth Mitchell is awesome, The opening scene of "Tale of Two Cities" was one of the best scenes of the year. Likewise when Juliette stared down Smokey at the fence, I was blown away. Terry O'Quinn always seems to give a very believable performance as Locke (my favorite character) and I think Josh Holloway has been perfectly cast as Sawyer. Almost all of the cast has grown into their roles and as an ensemble are the finest cast working today. My only exceptions would be Claire, who must have something coming in a future season, because she hasn't done anything yet, and Daniel Dae Kim, who was so good in "Crusade" and yet hasn't had his own episode to show off here yet.

Solid Production - With few exceptions , this is one of the best produced shows ever. In light of the HD, you tube , freeze frame age, these guys have shown amazing continuity. Anagrams, clues, and props are spot on and believable. They have added everything but the kitchen sink to this island and it still floats. At one time I thought they were winging it, but I'm pretty sure they have devised a master plan and it will work. Just don't pull a Sopranos and it'll all be okay.

I've heard them describe this show as a mosaic, and we only have half the tiles. I've read so many theories about LOST and I haven't seen one I believe yet. I just don't think we have enough pieces yet to put it all together. Every theory I've read leaves out a few things or fills in blanks or makes assumptions (Jacob explanation anyone?). The only thing for sure is that it's not Purgatory.


Friday, June 22, 2007

Out of Sight, Not Out of Mind.

How could you keep an island hidden?

I've been pondering this thought for some time. Even back in the days of Sail, there would be some intrepid British or Spanish captain who would have stumbled on the island. Besides the Black Rock, there would have to have been other shipwrecks here. The Samoans or Fijians were pretty adept sailors themselves, having found every other little rock sticking up out of the water in such a large ocean ( Easter Island? 1600 miles from anywhere), how could they miss an island that is 8 or more miles long?

Not to mention in today's world, where every square inch of the globe has been flown over, photographed, surveyed and charted to an astonishing degree. Kind of hard to hide an island from a satellite taking thermal or infrared temp photos of the ocean. The island would jump out from the surrounding colder water.

I really puzzled about this when Desmond took the 'Elizabeth' out after he (killed) or knocked out Kelvin (no body) and sailed off from the island on a heading of due west. Now even taking into account the magnetic properties of the island, it is still possible to sail a boat without a compass, especially at night. Sailors have followed the stars for thousands of years and used sextants to plot a course during the day. Desmond was an experienced sailor (why else attempt to sail around the world?) and would be pretty capable of maintaining a due west heading.

So when he wound up back on the island after two and a half weeks, well, let's just say that doesn't make much sense. Desmond said "We're in a bloody snow globe, brutha" was a pretty good line, but not an explanation. Also, what ever happened to that sailboat anyway?

The other thing bothering me is the supply drops. Supposedly they had to be intitiated from the flame as per the "Supply Drop Protocol" as seen on the screen where Locke was sniffing around Mikhael's computer in the Flame.
Is there more than one area where supplies are dropped? Why make the people living in the barracks go all the way to the Swan station drop? I guess the guys in the Swan station would have to make quite a few trips to haul their supplies back to the hatch. And why are they getting supplies in this manner anyway? Is this something that started after the incident? Wasn't there a road that went to the Swan? I think one showed up on Roger Workman's map.

If Dharma were still operational, Why not just drive the supplies out to the Station? The Virus or Sickness you say? well, how about hauling an entire pallet of supplies back to your hatch while wearing a Hazmat suit in a tropical jungle? Sound like fun? you bet. This just doesn't make sense to me either.

There had to be another way to get stuff to the island. Nobody brought VW vans in on a submarine. All the building materials, large appliances and mainframe computers would have had to be brought in by ship. They would have needed Caterpillars to build bunkers and cement trucks to build at least the Swan and the Pearl. You remember that concrete that John Locke said must be 6 feet thick around the magnetic core of the Swan? Well it ain't made out of Quickrete, I can tell you that. There are obvious tunnels running around the island (remember Razzle Dazzle (Expose´), when Paco was stashing his goodies in the crapper?, Ben and Juliette came out of a tunnel and looked up to see the Pearl hatch open).

I liked the way they handled the hidden island thing in King Kong, Shrouded in mist that never changes, shielded from view. But this island has some spectacularly sunny days with unlimited visibility, including stars at night. How exactly could the Looking Glass block a GPS signal to Naomi's SAT phone anyway?

In TTLG when Jack is sitting in his apartment looking all forlorn, surrounded by maps all over the floor, I thought it seemed a little strange that he couldn't figure out where the island is. Come on, as soon as I heard that the numbers were being broadcast from Hurley's friend in the loony bin, I right away thought they were coordinates. No, I'm not some math or numbers geek, it just sounded like Hurley said the numbers were repeating over and over. Why else broadcast a repetitive series of numbers? It sounded like a distress call and what else would you give but your coordinates so you could be rescued? Type these into Google maps and you find a piece of ocean in the South Pacific in a tropical climate that would be perfect place to park an island. 4º 8' 15" / 162º 3' 42"

Speaking of Jack, in his Flash forward he is taking flights over the Pacific every weekend with his 'Golden Pass'. Since the implosion of the Swan station, how exactly does he think an airliner is gonna get sucked down to the island? If it happened at all, wouldn't the place be littered with airliners right now?

Since I'm on a little reality check here...

How could a freighter be only 160 kilometers off shore and the island not show up on radar? I was in the U.S. NAVY and believe me, we could see a one hundred and sixty kilometers away from our ship with on board radar. Especially when you consider Naomi was aboard a helicopter and she said she thought she was over open water ( lets not delve into the absurdity of flying a helicopter at night over open ocean looking for someone).

This is one of the core mysteries of this show. How is the island hidden from view? Here's hoping TPTB have a good explanation and that they give it to us somewhere in the next 48 installments of this incredible show.


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

A Map to LOST Island?

During the course of these three seasons, I have been at times baffled, surprised and sometimes confused, but always entertained. I have never been bored watching LOST. I do in fact sit on the edge of the couch watching and listening for clues, hints, and any kind of giveaway. Sometimes I think I catch something, maybe an anagram or a name, but it usually turns out to be wrong.

I certainly have never seen any show so analyzed and dissected as this one. I for one love getting on the fan sites (thanks DarkUFO and Doc Arzt) and rehashing the show and the many subtle clues thrown in by the writers. Of course this is the lead in to this weeks column.

You see, I'm LOST. I mean I have watched every single episode of season one and two twice. I watched every episode of season three once and will get the DVD's as soon as they come out. But after three seasons and we now know halfway through this journey, I'm still confused.
Is it a show about redemption, time travel, or relationships? or all of these?

One week we're in Shambala and the next we have a catholic priest building a church on the island. I got a real chuckle after the statue with four toes appeared. Suddenly the message boards were speculating it was Atlantis, then Walt's comic was sure proof they were in a snow globe, not to mention all the sidetracks and wild theories spun of in every direction.
I've got to hand it to these writers for keeping us all guessing. It must be hard to inject so many different mythologies and symbolistic references, not to mention they must be about halfway through their book of obscure philosopher names about now.

Visions and Smoke Monsters, Four toed statues and guys who don't die or age, Beechcraft and Black Rocks in the jungle, Hell , I can't even think of all the tangents and blind alleys we've been led down. Trying to sort out all of these references, hints clues and mysteries requires a lot more room than just sketching on the back of the blast door.

This weeks mystery topic is about 'Finales'. After watching the ending of the Sopranos and feeling a really stiffed, I really hope the LOST crew can be a little more creative than that.

I wonder... (insert dream sequence music here)
If this show hadn't been picked up for a second season, how would LOST have finished after just one season? Would we have had the raft kidnapping? Would we have had an explanation for Smokey, who at the time was really just a Tree Shaker? Hmmmmm.

I wonder if the original idea really was Purgatory. Remember "Gary Troup"?, maybe because the audience figured it out so fast, they moved to plan B. I'm getting really cynical in my increasing age. If I'm watching a formula cop show and I recognize the rehashed storyline, sometimes I'll blurt out what is in the next scene (my kids always ask "how did you know that") because in Hollywood there really are no new ideas. Just the same ol' same ol' in a shiny new wrapper. LOST however, is unpredictable, and I like that. I have been burned recently with a number of shows that I bought into, invested an hour a week getting to know characters and following a good plot line only to have my show yanked after one season, and without a good wrap up. Firefly, Crusade, Surface, and Threshold were all yanked after just getting interesting. At least the bastards who axed Firefly had the good sense to finish it off with a great movie (Serenity). In fact it should be a prerequsite for any series that has an ongoing story that if they get axed after one season there has to be a movie or at least a good two hour or two part finale that wraps up the damn storyline. I am still chomping at the bit over 'Invasion' which admittedly was real slow with the reveals and the story dragged a bit, but was really building to a terrific mystery. I almost got burned again with 'Jericho' fortunately that show got a reprieve (hopefully one of my many emails to the CBS VP of Programming had some effect) although I did not send any nuts. I have none to spare.

But back to LOST, how would we have experienced all the amazing things we've seen in seasons two and three if this show had ended early? maybe someday, when all is said and done we will find out if they really did have this all mapped out from the beginning or if are really being taken along for a ride, a making it up as we go along type of thing. Because how could Twin Theory, Time Travel, Alternate Timelines, Different Dimensions, Atlantis, The Wizard of OZ, Alice in Wonderland, Shambala, Stephan Hawking and his merry band of Philosophers all fit into one story?

If they pull a Sopranos on us and don't explain the mysteries, eventually they will not be able to get viewers to watch this type of show in the future. Who will waste an hour a week knowing you're getting your chain yanked and this story will stop abruptly. Serial dramas will lose out to more Reality show dreck. Because people do have short attention spans and want resolution. By the end of this episode they want to know who will move on to the next round, or be booted off the island or win the million dollars, not yanked along for thirteen weeks just to have the rug pulled out from underneath them.

So Carlton and Damon, let's hope you really know who the skeletons are and why the statue has only four toes. You can pull a Deus Ex Machina like they did in Star Trek ( you know, make up some B.S. technology ) or you can try to make it believable, but just don't leave us hanging.


Friday, June 8, 2007

Kate and Juliette

I must say this seasons two leading ladies put on an impressive performance. Elizabeth Mitchell is simply outstanding in her role as Juliette. I love the little "I know more than I'll ever tell you" smirk. I am really hoping she gets an Emmy for this seasons performance, especially in 'One of Us'.

Evangeline had me in season one already. I think the lost little girl island Kate is easier for her to portray than the cold killer in the flashbacks. The little brow furrowing and head tilt with the "I don't understand" look is perfect for her. I think for her first major role that she is done an excellent job and I hope she gets an Emmy as well for her performance.

So, with that said about the actresses, let me go into my thought on the characters and my gut reaction to them.

Kate is a dumbass. Not only can she not keep a secret, but she can't understand simple directions. Don't come back for me, Don't follow us when we go hunting Others , Don't tell anybody about the tape...

She is just a little girl who keeps getting into trouble and the big boys have to come rescue her. awww, how sweet. I am also not buying into the 'she loves Jack, but sleeps with James' B.S.

If she loved Jack, and knew he was in a cage a hundred feet away, she wouldn't have slept with
Sawyer. it isn't realistic. This was done only for you Jaters and Shippers. I'm not one of either, frankly, I don't care. I assume the writers are doing this to keep a female audience interested in the show.

Juliette sure is a conflicted woman. As we saw in her flashback, she wants desperately to get off the island and get home. If these are in fact her motivations, and knowing Ben is not going to let her go, why hasn't she defected completely to the losties.

When I say completely, I mean she knows a lot more about whats going on on the island than shes telling. "If I told you everything, you'd kill me" she said to Sayid on the way back to the beach. I don't think so. Unless she was involved directly in killing any of the losties, I think they would give her a pass on anything else.

Okay, I know that logic eliminates some of the way writers tell a story. You can't give away the whole mystery enchilada right off the bat and expect viewers to stick around for the romance bullshit. However, I like that the writers tried to appease the viewers by having Sayid ask the questions we were all asking, "Who are you people?, What do you want?, Why are you terrorizing us?" but that's not all I'm talking about.

Common Sense:

In Enter 77, Sayid got hold of a map showing underground tunnels running through various parts of the island. Two were shown going into the Barracks compound. We also know that Jack and Sayid were gassed inside the compound. Why oh Why when Kate and Juliette returned to get Jack and Sayid did they not investigate the tunnels?

I mean really, nobody was around. Wouldn't any normal logical person look around for something to use, some info or intel to help them? Wouldn't you or I have gone to Ben's quarters and searched it for clues.
One episode before Kate and Juliette were mud wrestling, would they not want to use the washer and dryer or hit the showers before trekking off again into the woods? Hell why trek off into the woods at all, there was obviously a tunnel that led from the barracks compound to the Pearl Hatch (as we saw in Razzle Dazzle, when Paco was hiding his stash in the Crapper.) Juliette knew about the tunnel, yet said nothing, probably could have saved them hours of hiking through the jungle.

Come on, these women (especially if Kate wanted to look good for Jack) would have wanted to clean up and smell good.

Okay, I'm being too logical right? Just sit right back and let the tale unfold. Well, I can't help it, I am a problem solver, and that means I like to dissect and analyze the situation. On this show it means trouble for me because there are so many loose ends and new mysteries popping up every week.

In future posts, I will go into more of these 'Huh?' moments and try to examine some of them.