Saturday, February 13, 2010

Thoughts on LOST - What Kate Does

Yeah, I's not Thursday. I'm starting to think Thursdays might be a little optimistic. Maybe if all 5 of you loyal readers could start some kind of fund, so that I wouldn't have to do my actual job during the week...

Anyway, this episode was not one of my favorites...any episode that is Kate-centric has an uphill climb for me anyway, and then add that we never saw Ben, Locke, Un-Locke (or, as Mo Ryan has dubbed him, Smocke), Richard, or any of that crew, and it's probably not going to be a favorite of mine. That being said, a mediocre LOST episode is still better than about 98% of what's on television,so let's get to it...

- Yeah, Sawyer is pretty bitter that Sayid gets a second shot, while Juliet doesn't (as far as he knows).

And...he's not wrong. Sayid IS a torturer (whether he's Iraqi or not is irrelevant), and he DID try to kill a 12-year-old boy. As far back as Season 2, when Ana-Lucia is questioning him after she kills Shannon, Sayid is saying that he deserves to be punished, and maybe even die for the things he has done. More recently, there is the "Nothing can save me" remark he made to Jack in the van, and his conversation with Hurley about what awaits him in the afterlife.

My point, and I do have one, is this...I don't know that Sayid was supposed to be saved, no matter what Jacob supposedly did or didn't say.

Or, maybe...the point is that he DOES deserve to live, that he DOES deserve a second chance, and part of Sayid's character arc is that he has to come to terms with the concept that he is a good man who has done some bad things, which is different from being a bad man who deserves to die.

- Kate DEFINITELY recognizes something in Jack other than just him being the guy whose pen she lifted on the plane. They even played a quick cut of the "sideways flash" sound effect when their eyes locked. I think that there are going to be more and more little coincidences that the characters notice until it becomes obvious to all of them that there is something they are supposed to do in order to reconcile the two timelines.

- I thought that when Arzt was in the cross walk, we were going to find out that he was always "supposed" to die and the cab driver was going to run over him. And I was looking forward to it. Does that make me a good man who sometimes does bad things, or....?

- And, also, I was really glad to be rid of that cab driver...for the other Heroes fan(s) out there, he was the Puppetmaster, which was the creepiest part of the last season I actually watched (I think two seasons ago?)

- Sideways Kate has a harder edge to her, don't you think?

- Still love Miles, even when he only gets about a minute of screen time. The timing on this line was perfect:
"Yeah, and as you can see, Hugo here has assumed the... leadership position, so... that's pretty great."

Even though I don't think that's really true...he pretty much let Jack take the lead again in this episode. I was a little disappointed in that, because last week I thought we WERE heading to a "Hurley becomes a leader" place. Maybe he is taking the 2nd in command position from Sawyer, since Sawyer looks to be punching out.

- There are definitely some rules about what the Temple others can and can't do to our Lostaways. They weren't allowed to shoot Sawyer even though he was firing on them.

- Unfortunately, it looks like Sawyer has made a complete circle. He is back to being the loner who is only concerned about least that's what he wants everybody to think.

- Of course, Kate is going to be the one to track him down. Of course she is.

- In another example of similarities between the two timelines, the stuffed whale that Kate finds in Claire's bag is identical to the one that little Aaron has in "Something Nice Back Home" when he walks in on Jack and Kate's argument.

- Nice little moment for the Jaters in the audience as Kate is leaving to track Sawyer. Not sure what it means, based on what we see out of Kate later, and frankly...I don't care. The Kate Triangle (or Trapezoid, if you include Juliet) is at about 15,000,000 on the list of things I care about seeing this season.

- Dogen has Sayid strapped down, and the first thing he does is blow ash onto him...I assume that is a test to see if he is Smokey or not.

- Very uncomfortable torture scene...I agree with what I have seen written elsewhere: I wonder if the "test" would have been different if it wasn't Sayid the Torturer being tested? Regardless, I think the irony was intentional.

- Kate goes back to pick up Claire, who willingly gets back in the cab with the woman who just had a gun in her face 30 minutes ago. Right...

I'm only going to fan-wank this once....I'm going to assume that if it had been anybody else, Claire would have waddled away as fast as she could. But since it's Kate, and they share a connection similar to the one that Kate felt with Jack, she is willing to get in the cab with her. And take her with her to meet the potential adoptive parents of her unborn child. And have her at her bedside in the hospital. And lie to police for her. And give her credit card to her.

Moving on....quickly, before I pull something suspending my disbelief.

- Although Aldo is a jerk, he also had one of the funniest lines of the episode when faced with multiple questions from Kate and Jin" "I'm sorry, is this a press conference?" Also maybe an Oceanic 6 callback?

- Poor doomed Justin seems really nice and helpful. And informative. I'll bet he never really fit in with the Others.

We see a Rousseau-esque trap, even though she has been dead for three years. This will be important later.

- Gotta admit, even for a Kate hater, that was funny: "Remember me? You knocked me out with your rifle that time in order to escape-" POW!


- I think Jack is beginning to realize the special authority that he and the rest of his crew have. He walked right up to the (rather large) guards outside of Dogen's lair and simply said "Step aside". And he wasn't surprised when they did exactly that.

- So, Sayid is "infected". Is this the "sickness" we have been hearing about ever since we first met Danielle?

- "He has to take it willingly, and he won't take it willingly from us." "Then maybe you should have asked him to take it BEFORE you tortured him."

Point, Jack.

- This is another example of the fact that the Island can't MAKE you do anything. You have to be willing to help yourself (Christian couldn't help John up, etc.).

- I'm a little confused by this...Dogen had them all tell them their names when they first arrived at the Temple, like he didn't know who they were. But he sure seems to know an awful lot about Jack's history.

- The winner of the "funniest moment of the night" award:
HURLEY: You're not a zombie, right?
SAYID: No. I am not a zombie.

The seriousness of Sayid's response is what sold it.

- 2nd place: "We'll be in the food court if you need us."

- I have been a Jack hater for a while now, but I'm digging this Temple version of Jack. No pretentiousness, no Savior complex (so far, anyway). Just acting as the leader (which he is), and watching out for his people, his friends. Sayid trusts him completely, and Jack is not about to do anything to betray that trust.

- Kate really doesn't know where Ajira 316 landed, since she missed that "landing" by 30 years.

- "Who do YOU care about, Kate?" Ugh. That was clunky dialogue, there. I don't even know what he is asking her. Is he accusing her of caring about nobody but herself, or does he just want to know how the Triangle plays out? Is Jin a Jater, or a Skater?

- Breezing past the fact that Claire wants a cab-hijacking stranger to be the one with her when she meets the adoptive parents....

(seriously, why wouldn't she be worried that Kate is going to pull a gun again and start taking hostages?)


- Claire is not supposed to give Aaron up for adoption. I think the universe has been quite clear on this point, don't you?

- Kate must be an extremely reckless driver...she made it to the airport just three minutes after the contractions started? I would think it would have taken at least a minute or so to even get her in the cab. Was the hospital right next door?

Interesting side note...remember the Numbers? 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42. Turns out they were the factors in the Valenzetti Equation, which was supposed to be a formula that would predict the time of human extinction. According to the story established by the LOST Experience ARG, the Dharma Initiative was established in large part to try and change those factors and prolong the existence of mankind.

Vozzek has a theory that part of the fallout from Jughead is that the Numbers DID change, by a factor of one. He thinks that we will see more instances of the numbers 3, 7, 14, 15, 22, and 41 in this Sideways Timeline. I'll leave it up to you to decide what it means if the factors actually go DOWN rather than up.

- Sorry, but friendly Ethan may be even creepier than evil Ethan.

So, apparently, Ethan escaped from the Island in 1977 as a baby, kept the name Goodspeed (Horace and Amy's name) rather than Rom (still not sure where that one came from, other than the fact that ETHAN ROM is an anagram for OTHER MAN), but still went on to become a doctor specialiazing in OB/GYN.

Also, he's not evil anymore.

- "I just don't want to have to stick you with needles if I don't have to."

Heh. Nice one, show.

- Love how they keep showing little moments that could have multiple meanings...did Kate do a double take because Claire named the baby Aaron, which sparked something in her subconscious, or just surprise that Claire has named this baby that she was supposedly giving up for adoption?

Also interesting that the baby "flatlined" when Claire said she wasn't ready to have him, implying that she still wanted to give him up, and only came back when she freaked out and called him "Aaron"? Again...Claire is not supposed to give up this baby.

- Awesome, awesome scene between Kate and Sawyer on the dock. Josh Holloway has come SO far as an actor in these six seasons.

- Interesting parallel between Ben, Sayid, Hurley, Sawyer...everybody who has lost loved ones on this Island. Rather than blame the person who actually killed their loved one (Keamy, Ana-Lucia, Michael, Jack (sort of)), they all ultimately end up blaming themselves.

- Why did Kate break down in tears? I actually had a conversation that threatened to turn heated about that very topic (hi, Amanda!)
- Option 1: Kate came after Sawyer because she thought there was still a chance for them to be together (if not now, then maybe later), and she is heartbroken because she realizes that Sawyer will never feel that way about her again after seeing how deeply he loved Juliet. I sincerely hope that is not the case...if Kate still held out hope for a happy Skater ending after seeing Sawyer's reaction to Juliet's death, she is even dumber than I have ever given her credit for.

- Option 2: I think she just was overwhelmed by everything at the moment. Up until then, she had been occupied with the idea of what to do Juliet, save Sayid, escape from the Temple, find Sawyer, etc. But now she sits down for a minute, and everything hits her....Juliet's death, being captured (again), Sayid's death and apparent resurrection, the fact that the Jughead plan apparently didn't work and they are still on the Island, and now Sawyer seems to be ready to cut her out of his life completely. That's a lot of stuff to back up on you at once. Heck, I'm getting a little emotional thinking about it, and I don't even LIKE Kate.

Either way, I'm holding out hope that this signifies the end of the Triangle. Please.

- Great line from Dogen on his use of a translator:
"Because I have to remain separate from the people I'm in charge of. It makes it easier when they don't like the decisions I make for them."

Know what it reminded me of? Stranger in a Strange Land. Yeah, Jack's Tattoo Episode, widely considered to be the worst LOST episode ever. Remember what Jack's tattoo means? "He walks among us, but he is not one of us."

The point of that episode (if there was one) was that Jack felt disconnected from the rest of the group due to having the leadership mantle thrust upon him, but he was always destined to fill that role.

- AWESOME! He swallowed the pill! I'm telling you, I am DIGGING New Jack.

- Claire lies to the police and gives Kate her credit card. Moving on...

- Wait, one interesting thing...Claire chose "Aaron" because it was like she "knew it or something." Another connection is made that will ultimately bring the characters to the point of reconciling the two timelines.

- So Claire was "infected" and now she has apparently become New Rousseau.

So did that mean that Rousseau was the one who was "sick" and not the other members of her group? I really don't think so...I think the other French group members became infected because they came in contact with Smokey.

Danielle went crazy because all of her team members died, including her lover who tried to kill her and her unborn baby, and then the Others came and took her baby, and then she was stuck on the Island for 16 years.

Claire somehow came in contact with Smokey, or at least some agent of his, and I think now we know why the water was dirty when they shoved Sayid down into it. Sweet little innocent Claire is gone...the infection reached her heart. Can't wait to see what she is now.

Overall, although it wasn't my favorite LOST episode I think we are starting to see some answers and some idea of the direction the "Sideways Timeline" plot device is going to go.

Next week...we are back to Smocke, Ben, Richard, and the gang.



Shan said...

I'm not exactly president of the Kate fan club either, but I did enjoy this one. And I'm with you on digging Jack's "new" outlook on life.

One thing I'm wondering about. Do we know for sure WHEN the Jack/Miles/Hurley crowd are? We're assuming they're in the "current" island timeline, and things there have transpired the way we saw them on the show. But the way that Justin referred to Rousseau's death as "years ago" seems odd. Would you really phrase it that way if it was only 3 years ago? (However, Aldo states that Kate him with the rifle butt 3 years ago, so maybe I'm reading too much into it).

Random trivia: we know about Jack's love of baseball, and the "Sox won the Series while you were trapped on the island" discussion with Ben. So it was cool to see a baseball on Dogen's desk. Know how many stitches an official baseball has? Yep, 108.

Anonymous said...

Something interesting that i picked up on from this episode, which could have huge implications is the fact that when the plane crashed in season 1 it was september 23, 2004. Now that they have landed safely it doesnt appear to be the same month. I believe its actually october something. Claire was ready to have Aaron within moments of getting off the plane(even thought she chose not to have him). However, after the crach she wasnt ready to have Aaron on the island until about a month later. I have a feeling this difference in time is going to be something big.