Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Response to "Everybody Loves Hugo" Post

Ok, I started this as a direct response to Brandon's last post, but it got way too lengthy, so I'm putting it up as a post. Don't have a heart attack, Brandon. I am actually posting. :)

This sounds a little gruesome, but my favorite part of this episode was when Ilana blew up. She totally deserved it, with the way she was treating the dynamite. I saw it coming with her behavior, but was a little surprised when it actually happened.

I think Desmond is still alive in the well because Locke, like everyone else, still needs him for some reason. Just don't know what that is. As noted in an earlier post, though, Desmond seems to be pretty complacent to do what *anyone* asks him to, so maybe Locke's gotta keep him in a place that others perhaps won't find him? I'm kind of wondering if he is keeping him in the well so Widmore will have to search him out (thus allowing Locke to move more freely towards the plane?)... just thinking out loud here. Locke said something about the well making compass needles spin--what would Desmond's ability to withstand massive amounts of electromagnetism (or whatever it was) do to that/because of that? Very interesting stuff going on with Desmond, I think. Actually, now that I think about it, I think he's just hiding Desmond so he can use him if he needs to get past the electro-fence thing into Widmore's camp... doesn't that seem like something Desmond could withstand?

On that note, I think Desmond tried to kill Locke (succeeded? not sure) either because:
A.) He remembers the island, and what a jerk Locke was to him. Also, if Locke were to remember the island, like everyone else seems to be doing, the potential ramifications there are scary.
B.) Maybe Desmond is trying to recreate his own remembrance (remember how Charlie nearly killed him and that's how he remembered?) to get Locke to remember his role? Again, not sure.

I'm confused about why all the candidates need to leave together. They got off before without everyone, and came back (though that time it was claimed that they all needed to be together, too...but Eloise seemed somewhat willing to make an exception?).

It kind of bugs me when questions are answered so bluntly (like the whispers thing)--we've been waiting for years for these answers, and then they just throw them in our faces? Lame. Also--why can everyone hear the whispers, but only Hugo *see* the dead people? Other people have seen the dead in the past, but they've always been the smoke, right? But Locke is stuck in his body now, so the dead people are something else? Also, Miles can hear people's last thoughts--what's with all the dead people gifts?

I don't hate Michael, either. My feelings towards him are similar to those towards Ben. I think part of the show is just the idea of how even the "worst" people aren't necessarily bad, and the good ones can be... Hugo being one of the few exceptions there (he does seem to genuinely be good... though his $$ definitely cursed a lot of people in Reality A). Just lots of shades of gray within the characters.

That being said, it seems like Michael may be working for Esau. Or at least he's working towards getting everyone off the island (since they all have to go together...). Does he maybe get to leave with them? And what would happen if they *did* make it off the island? Their existence is still continuing in Reality B while they're living in Reality A--what if they collided? I'm thinking that's maybe where the cracks in Reality B are coming from--the closer they get to leaving the island in A, the more cracks people are seeing in B. Also, does it seem like the dead (Libby and Charlie, specifically) break through the realities a lot easier? Perhaps because they're not on the island anymore?

Sorry this is so disorganized. I still have a lot of questions. Hope you guys don't mind me thinking out loud.

Go season go.

Everybody Loves Hugo

First things first, and I have to say my favorite part of last night's episode was the 30-second preview for next week's episode. Not that "Everybody Loves Hugo" wasn't any good, but holy smokes was the preview brilliant.

Here it is (and for those of you who avoid these because of spoilers, there really aren't any):

Whoever had the brilliant idea to combine Willy Wonka's creepy tunnel scene with Lost should get a raise. As my wife pointed out last night, we all watched that movie as kids, and we were all terrified of the tunnel incident (and rightly so). Tapping into that part of our shared subconscious was genius.

Dragging index: 3 out of 10. As the episode title implies, I love Hurley and am never bored when he's around. The only problem was that at the end, I realized not much at all had really happened.

The learning:

Reality A

1. Messing with that Black Rock dynamite is never a good idea. Though the way Ilana was tossing stuff into the bag and throwing it around, you'd have thought she was suicidal. At least Arzt was being careful with his when he blew up.

2. The Island IS Purgatory after all! Kind of! Apparently if you did bad stuff on the Island and then died, you're stuck there. That's what the whispers are. Thanks for answering a question we've had since Season 1, writers!

3. Michael appears to Hurley with some unhelpful advice. "I'm here to keep you from getting everyone killed," doesn't do much to clear anything up. Stupid ghosts.

4. Esau ascertains that Widmore wants something from Desmond and promptly chucks Desmond down a well. After establishing that the well isn't deep enough to cause instant death, this plan seems weird for Esau. Why not just kill Des and be done with it?

5. That ghost boy keeps messing with Esau, though Esau is determined to just ignore him. I think this is hilarious. The boy seems to be older than he was the first time we saw him, and his arms are no longer covered in blood. Or it might be a different boy altogether. Who knows?

6. Richard's assertion that "Jacob never tells people what to do," was not entirely accurate. Jacob did appear to Hurley once already this season, and he gave Hurley a very specific set of instructions.

6. Hurley leads a group to join up with Esau's crew. Jack, Sun, Kate and Lapidus join him. Richard, Miles and Ben go off to destroy the Ajira Airways plane. Jack finally comes to terms with his savior complex through following Hurley's lead. Whether this is a good thing or not, we don't know.

7. Esau states that to get off the Island, the candidates all need to leave together. Assuming the plane doesn't blow up anytime soon, Esau is now most of the way there.

Reality B

1. Libby's Matrix is cracked by merely seeing Hurley on TV. Hurley's Matrix is cracked when she kisses him, though he feels something when they first meet.

2. Desmond is actively getting involved in the lives of passengers from flight 815. For some reason he feels pushing Hurley towards Libby is enough to help him see the truth, but Locke needs to get smashed by a car. Maybe this is because Locke doesn't have any romantic relationships in Reality A. Also, he's dead.

In other news, in talking with my wife last night I realized that the writers have done everything in their power to make us really like Hurley and really dislike Michael.

Hurley never does anything remotely cruel. He never hurts anyone, intentionally or otherwise. He only wants what is best for everyone. He is acutely aware of his own shortcomings, but isn't super emo about them. He even forgives Michael for killing Libby. In short, he's borderline unbelievably good.

Meanwhile, Michael's only focus while he's alive is Walt, to the detriment of everyone around him. And he even fails at being a good father. He betrays the Losties, kills two of them, loses his son and then tries to kill himself. Thanks to the direction of Mr. Friendly, he does manage to somewhat redeem himself by freezing the bomb on the Kahana for a while, but when he reappears, he only berates Hurley, further giving us a negative impression of him.

And the thing is, even with all that, I don't see Michael as a bad person. I see him as a good person who is forced to make terrible decisions (terrible as in extremely difficult) and recognizes that fact.

That's enough amateur psychology from me.

Feel free to chime in with anything I've missed. Go Willy Wonka boat go.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Lost fan art!

Lost fans are nothing if not devoted and a little crazy. Here's a bunch of Lost fan art ABC has collected and put on display on the interwebs for all to see.

I'd post a couple here, but the whole thing is in Flash (so you iPad users can't view them).

Friday, April 9, 2010

Random thoughts on Lost in general

Today I listened to Chuck Klosterman discuss Lost with Bill Simmons on a podcast for 20 minutes, and I also read's Doc Jensen's take on the latest episode. Here are a few disconnected things I learned and/or thought were interesting.

Klosterman is apparently buddies with a few of the writers for Lost, and he said that there are two separate camps in that group: Camp 1 wants to focus on the soap-opera elements of the show, while Camp 2 really likes the sci-fi aspects, including time travel, the Swan Hatch, etc. Apparently Camp 2 won the battle during Seasons 2 and 3, which perfectly explains what the heck was going on with the show spending so much time on love triangles and Hurley getting the Dharma van working and stuff like that.

Simmons heard that Lost was initially created because some ABC exec loved Tom Hanks' Castaway, and wanted the network to produce a show along those lines. Therefore, the pilot was thrown together really, really quickly, and Simmons doesn't believe there's any way the writers/producers planned the entire show, or even important aspects of it, in advance.

Klosterman generally agrees with that premise, and is virtually certain that the writers are reverse engineering stuff now to fit with earlier episodes, which explains continuity issues that occasionally pop up.

That said, Klosterman said he consciously chooses to watch believing they know what they're doing until the end, and that the entire show is written well enough that everything is part of one great whole. He said if the final episodes are crap and don't resolve anything, he may change his mind. :)

And from

Jensen notices two discrepancies in Tuesday's episode when you compare them to earlier ones this season.

1. Claire tells Desmond she doesn't know Aaron's sex, when she clearly tells Kate that she's having a boy.

2. Desmond is wearing a wedding ring on Oceanic 815 when he is sitting next to Jack.

So either these are just mistakes the show has made, or there's some weird convergence of realities taking place from the time Oceanic 815 takes off until it lands safely, and maybe even after that. Maybe Reality B is something that is gradually forming, not something that solidly exists. Which kinda goes along with all of my Matrix theories.

In other news, the driver I get creeped out about is George Minkowski, the Kahana's radio operator who got unstuck in time and died last season. In my own defense, the guy was referred to and not pictured about 50 times before we saw him, and he almost immediately died at that point. I'm good, but apparently I'm not that good.

And something else Jensen noticed is that Desmond and Widmore have a meeting in Reality A where Widmore specifically tells Desmond he's not good enough to drink the scotch in his office.
However, [Widmore] only pours whiskey into one glass, saying that one swallow costs more than Desmond would make in a month, and sharing it with him would be a waste because he will never be a great man and as such will never be worthy to marry his daughter.
Just makes the moment when Widmore offers Desmond a drink in Reality B that much better.

Finally, a great find by Jensen:
I was reminded of what Young Daniel Faraday told his mother in the episode entitled ''The Variable'' when she informed him that she wanted him to stop studying piano and start focusing his genius on physics. He could do both, he insisted. ''I can make time,'' he said. Eloise sighed. ''If only you could,'' she said. And it sounds like he did — if you believe Dan's Lost theory.
A good find. I don't agree with many of Jensen's theories, but he's an entertaining read and he does his research.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Happily Ever After

At long last, Reality B starts to have some sort of relevance to the overall plot of the show. Did Tuesday's episode completely destroy my existing theory about what Reality B is? Yes it did. But I'm not upset, because whatever the truth is, it's more interesting than what I previously thought.

Dragging index: An impressive 0 out of 10. Great episode.


Reality A:

1. Widmore wants Desmond for Desmond's magical "I can survive a major electromagnetic event" powers. Somehow Widmore found out about the Swan explosion incident and figures if Des can do it once, he can do it again. What usefulness this skill actually has, I have no idea.

2. Widmore is right. The very same experiment that fried poor Redshirt to death leaves Desmond with hardly a scratch, though it's hard to tell which injuries are from being beaten by Widmore's groupies, which are from breaking his chair against the door, and which are possibly from the experiment.

3. Widmore once again says that if his mission fails, everyone will be gone forever. These are some high stakes here.

4. After the experiment, suddenly Desmond is Mr. Cooperative. At first I thought this was because he'd traveled to Reality B and saw what would be missing/different if Esau gets off the Island, but then

5. Infected Sayid opens a can on Widmore's people (sparing Zoe McGeophysist) and tells Desmond to come with him. Desmond responds like a 3-year-old who has been offered ice cream, and happily trundles off into the jungle. What happened to helping Widmore? I argue Desmond is brain damaged thanks to the electromagnetism, at least temporarily.

Reality B:

1. Is the Matrix! Everyone is in a reality that should not exist, and cracks are forming in the "programming." It starts with Charlie's vision of Claire, then Desmond flashes back to Reality A Charlie's death and finally, Faraday (Widmore, whatever) is writing incredibly complex quantum mechanics in a notebook, despite being a musician with no expertise in this area whatsoever.

2. To backtrack a bit, Desmond is best friends with Widmore, but has no friends or family whatsoever. Charlie's accusation that Desmond isn't really happy rings true.

3. Charlie remains Charlie. Bassist for Drive Shaft, heroin addict, etc. etc.

4. Penny and Daniel are aware of each other's existence, though Daniel still refers to her as his half-sister, which is consistent with Reality A. Faraday is living his childhood dream of being a great pianist, while in Reality A, this dream is redirected/quashed by Hawking, who wants Daniel to be a physicist.

5. Eloise Hawking is still Eloise Hawking, except that she is openly married to Widmore. She is still obsessed with the status quo, hearkening back to her "what happened, happened" speech to Desmond in The Constant. She tells Desmond he can't see the guest list because he is not ready yet. More Matrix parallels.

6. And just like in Reality A, Daniel is insistent on proving his mother wrong. He believes he can change the timeline by detonating the nuke, despite Ms. Hawkings arguments that this is impossible. Here in Reality B, he essentially gives Penny to Desmond, in direct conflict with his mother's wishes.

7. From Lostpedia's recap: "[Hawking] says that [Desmond] should not need to look for anything, that he has the perfect life and has attained the thing he wanted more than anything: the approval of Charles Widmore." Major, major Matrix theme, there. The machines created a world to keep the humans happy, even if it wasn't real. Seems that is going on here.

8. Faraday believes he set off an atomic bomb and created this reality. This puts us square into the realm of concurrent realities where one has holes in it and just trying to get my head around the theory at large gives me a headache. I'm just going to wait until more is explained.

9. The major cracks in the Matrix are all centered around relationships. Penny/Desmond, Charlie/Claire, Faraday/Charlotte. Minor cracks exist in Jack's scar and possibly Sawyer letting Kate go at the airport. Major cracks lead to characters trying to learn more, willingly recruiting others, etc. Minor cracks just seem to be like deja vu. Something weird, but not enough for those who experience them to openly question the reality of their reality.

10. Considering Charlie's version of "showing" Desmond the cracks involved driving the car into the ocean, I wonder what Desmond has in plan for the other passengers of 815. I had a conversation with Amy about this last night, and we both thought it'd be humorous if Desmond contacted an 815 passenger who had died in the crash. "So, um, you should be dead. Just thought you should know."

11. I get major trap vibes from George, the driver. It may just be he's kinda sleazy, but I don't trust that guy.

That's it. Can't wait for next week.