Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Not Penny's Boat

Spoiler alert. If you are into Lost and have not seen last night's episode . . . blah blah blah.

This has never been a Lost blog, and it is not going to become one now so close to the end of the series. But with only seven episodes left (assuming you count the two-hour finale as two episodes, otherwise there are only six left), the show officially entered the gun lap with last night's installment, "Happily Ever After."

For those of you who came to the show in the traditional manner, watching each week and waiting several months in between seasons, your long-running frustration and love-hate relationship with the show has been well-chronicled here. And for those of you who, like me, came to the show via shortcut, the advantages of that approach are noted here.

Either way -- whether you are a dinosaur like Open Bar who watches TV the old-fashioned way, or a cutting-edge techie geek like me -- you could not help but appreciate "Happily Ever After." I will not try to do a long exegesis of the episode (and besides, this guy did a much better job than I could anyway). Instead, I will only say that with this episode, we are starting to see glimpses of where the show might be headed for its grand finale.

Perhaps the biggest question of this season -- other than the obvious "how's it going to end" thing -- is whether and to what extent there is any connection between the people who are on the island, and their mirrors in the so-called "flash sideways" scenes. When Daniel Faraday/Widmore tells Desmond that he thinks he already blew up a nuclear bomb, and when Desmond gets into his car and tells his driver that he wants to find the other passengers from the Oceanic flight, we know that the "flash sideways" sequences are going to unfold in a way that is not at all disconnected from what is happening on the island. (side note: did you recognize the driver? He was George Minkowski - the sick communications officer from the freighter in the Season 4 episode, "The Constant" (which is the single best episode of the show, in my opinion). "The Constant" is the other episode in which Desmond becomes vaguely conscious of the fact that he is vacillating between two realities, and in which his love for Penny anchors his ability to manage the strain of that experience. A nice juxtaposition there).

In fact, in addition to the significant development of the plot (indeed, one of the biggest criticisms of the show is that nothing happens -- questions are raised, never answered), there were a number of wonderful juxtapositions in this episode. The above-mentioned return of Minkowski, now as driver, but still a "guide" for Desmond as he navigates between two realities. Also, in the scene in which Desmond finds Penny running in the stadium, we see a complete reversal of the scene from Season 2 where Penny finds Desmond there, and they plan to be apart (he is preparing to leave for the yacht race) rather than together (for a cup of coffee, in an hour). Lastly - and by far most poignantly - as Desmond tries to rescue Charlie from the submerged car, Charlie places his hand on the glass . . . revealing, but not really, those fateful words from the Season 3 finale:

Not Penny's Boat.


Open Bar said...

Last night's episode was the tits, though I think the Richard one two weeks ago was a bit better. (That might be my pick for the series' best, though I'm not as fresh on the older ones as SB).

I guess it depends on what aspect of Lost you're most interested in. For me, it's the Jacob / Man in Black / Smoke Monster / What is this fucking island and how did all this start? angle.

One could prefer the time-traveling / physics / electromagnetism part, in which case last night's episode would be more up your alley.

All's I know is that Lost finally has its mojo back in full force. Though I can see it pissing me off royally at least one more time ... by ending.

ChuckJerry said...

Anyone who doubted that Desmond was the best character before yesterday should have put aside those notions after last night's episode. He seems to be the linchpin in the whole deal. Also, I'm gonna start saying "brother" at the end of every sentence.

I'll never talk about Lost and also use the words, "it seems clear that," at the same time. But at this point, it seems as if the part where Juliette says, "It worked," and this alternate flash sideways shit are about to come crashing together.

I have a theory about the sideways flashes, but who doesn't? Also it's not especially ground breaking, seems rather pedestrian actually. (Yeah, that was it. It was history. I found it, ah, rather elementary. I wouldn't say that because I go here I'm a genius or anything....What's that?....Yeah, it was surveys. Good course, you should check it out.)

Open Bar said...

Care to explain this theory or what?

And also, Desmond's awesome, but a better character than Ben Linus? I'm not so sure.

rick said...

Hey gang,
Allow me to share a few thoughts about the most recent episode of Lost, "Everybody Loves Hugo."
I will remember this episode as "Rickle falls in love with Desmond"
I have been a huge Locke fan since the beginning,perhaps b/c he trained for a survival walkabout and brought a suitcase full of hunting knives (cutco?)(hy) while he was wheelchair bound. Or maybe b/c us bald guys have to stick together.
However, in "everybody loves Hugo", Desmond is bringing lovers ("wove, true wove") together (Hugo and Libby finally had their first date) and helping the cripple to walk again (though he did do it by attempted vehicular homicide on Locke.)
Prediction: Some readers and writers of this blog will cry (maybe just a manly tear or two) myself included, when Sun and Jin are finally reunited. Our heart strings will be pulled harder than when Bernard and Rose were reunited a few seasons back.
I can't wait for the rest of the season, I hope our fellow Highw@yman, D@mon L!ndel0f, class of 92' doesn't let us down, and will hopefully winit.

Side Bar said...

Des is the man -- on the island and off of it.

Open Bar and I were discussing this episode on Tuesday night and we were both very pleased. Some more answers to lingering questions (though at least one of us was unsatisfied with the explanation of the whispers), and more evidence of a "reunification," of sorts, between the people on the island and their mirrors in the flash-sideways sequences.

I was really holding on to a theory that Locke/smoke monster is the "good" guy, and that Jacob is not, but his tossing Des down the well did not help that theory at all.

ChuckJerry said...

I gotta say, I'm gonna be kindof disappointed if this just comes down to a "love conquers all" thing.

The Jacob-Bad/Smoke monster-good theory is an interesting one, but, as you say, seems to be off the table. Also if Jacob was the evil one, then clearly Sayid would be the best candidate for a replacement.

I don't see the whispers as disappointing. Since the beginning they've had dead people showing up on the island to people who were important to them and it seems like one of the few things that viewers could have worked out for themselves. They could have written a better scene in explanation, but the explanation was pretty good. It also lends to the island as Purgatory and/or Hell theory. It may even actually prove it.

I'm so over Sun and Jin. I would like them to explain the episode, though, where Sun gives birth and Jin is getting that giant panda but they're like not married or something and he's really dead. That shit don't make no sense.

I really hope they do more Richard history instead of just running around trying to destroy stuff.

That chick blowing up was mad random. I was just starting to think about how they needed to explain her story a little bit more.