Okay… so this blog is going to be light on the theories and heavy on the annoyed rants. And I’d like to preface what I’m about to write with: I really did love last night’s episode. I like what is happening on the show but I don’t like the why’s that Team Darlton are spewing. But I digress…
So, last night we got to experience the death of some beloved characters and my favorite Old Spice Commercial Star said his last one-liner. Some were redeemed, some were just killed (Chip Lowell* aka dude with Machine Gun who also knew a few things about science-y stuff. I was sad when you died even if the rest of the audience didn’t give a crap! Long Live CHIP!)
They were all casualties of FLocke’s “Long con” and more-so, I like to think that they’d each fullfilled their destiny. You know, cause when the island is done with you… it’s DONE with you. But no. That is not why these characters died. Why did they die? Let Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse tell you… (from THIS interview)…
Cuse: “There is no ambiguity. He is evil and he has to be stopped.” … “There will be very little debate at the end of this episode that [Fake Locke] is evil and bad and has to be stopped. The main narrative reason for him killing our main characters is to establish how much of a bad guy he is and to clearly identify him as the antagonist rolling into the end of the series.”
Lindelof: “In many ways, the season was structured as a long con on behalf of the Man In Black. Once we revealed that Locke was the Monster, we knew the audience would immediately mistrust him, and we would have to spend at least a dozen episodes of Locke trying to convince the audience that he did not have malevolent intention, that all he wanted to do was get off The Island. But everything he was doing was leading up to one moment, which was [trying to] get the candidates in one fell swoop. He knew if he killed just one of them, everyone would know what he was up to.’”
OMGosh… where to even start. First, I’d just like to say that ever since we met The Man in Black I have given him the benefit of the doubt, going so far to wonder if he and Jacob had some point switched bodies and that Jacob was trapped in the MIB via my Tezcatlipoca theory. So finding out what I think we all suspected, that MIB was in fact the smoke monster, did little to change our opinion of who or what he was at his core. And I don’t think that I’m in the minority when I say that possibly everything that came out of FLocke’s mouth this season was not to be believed. All of this makes me feel like Darlon thinks I’m an idiot who needs to be beat over the head with stuff so I’ll “get it.” Oh well… What happened, happened… right?
And speaking about what happened, specifically on this blog and in the comments of other’s blogs, I know there are people who find me INSANE to think that the MIB is a character that I have felt sympathy for. But hear me out; What is Lost but a show that introduced us to characters who have dozens of layers. Complicated people who are neither good nor evil, who take the punches that life throws them and make their decisions the best that they can. For 5.75 seasons we’ve seen flashback after flashback then flashforward after flashforward then flashsideways after flashsideways about all the reasons that our Lostaways are the way they are. The good or shitty things that shaped their world views and informed their actions. And then for Darlton to decide in what feels like the 11th hour that MIB is only one shade, one big bad evil mess of rancid smelling smoke? Wow… what a let down. I can only hope that in next week’s episode, “Across the Sea,” that we get to see the real stuff, the heartache and confusion that this man is made of and it isn’t one big love letter to Jacob and how MIB screwed him throughout their lives because he is a bad bad man. Pffffft.
Then there was this comment about Sayid:
Lindelof explains: “Sayid’s entire season-long arc has basically been, if you tell him that he is evil, you can convince him he is evil. But if you tell him he is good, maybe you can convince him he is good. We basically decided that in a moment of pure instinct, if he did something, if he sacrificed his own life in favor of saving the other people’s lives, that would convey to the audience, ‘This guy was actually a good guy.’”
Dude… do you even watch your own show? From the beginning of the series Sayid has known two things about himself; that he had done horrible, reprehensible things AND that he was good a good man at heart. Here was a man who had often been forced into making impossible choices and carry out heinous acts, usually in order to save someone or spare someone from pain. Remember Sayid as an adorable child in Tikrit when he stepped up a killed a chicken for his older brother who couldn’t do it himself when asked by his father?
This kid doesn't hate chickens!
You may want to call him a chicken hating killer but IMO he was trying to save his brother from humiliation at the hands of their father, who found out anyway that Sayid had done the killing. Then, in adulthood, he only became a torturer after seeing a video of his home villiage attacked with nerve gas. Not sure of his motivations after that during the remainder of his stint in the Iraqi Republic Guard but men are asked to do the unimaginable during war. It does not mean they are evil. They are serving their country and even though I am a peace loving hippie, I believe that he did his duty. And then we saw that from the time he ran into Nadia he struggled to get on a better path.
Throughout the show, the writers were constantly throwing Sayid into situations where he had these really heavy moral decisions to make. Out of every person on the island, I believe his path was the hardest and it is so unfair that in the final season they turn him into a zombie, a pawn of evil (whose light we could still see occasionally glint from his dark vacant gaze) and then verbally dismiss him after the fact as a person who is either good or bad based on what he is told he is. I call bullshit. I say that despite the writers intentions about Sayid’s heroic actions last night, Sayid was doing what Sayid had always done… put everyone else’s needs ahead of his and taking one for the team because at heart… Sayid is and always was, a good man. period.
So far as Sun and Jin… I don’t understand why people are so shocked that they didn’t discuss their kid when facing certain death. It’s been well established that Sun is selfish and that they always put each other over every one else. I mean, she left her kid with her mother to go back to death island! Come on people! Get with the program. I do think it was a very sweet ending for them. The island was done with them… they had served their purpose… that is what I am telling myself and not all this hoo haw about them dying to prove that FLocke is evil. Yeah… we know… he’s EVIL. Whatever. Daniel Dae Kim has never looked so sexy so it was a nice teary thumbs up for me.
But back to Darlton… I understand the necessity of killing off beloved characters, of turning people evil, etc… but I would appreciate it if the reasons you were doing so was because that is what the story dictated for the sake of the story and NOT the audience. So we’ve been chatting, tweeting, blogging, commenting, watercoolering, texting and Lostpediaing our opinions about the MIB… so what? You don’t see JK Rowling making decisions based on what she feels her readers aren’t following or understanding in the story. She makes her decisions based on what her heart and mind tell her about her story and characters. Take a lesson from her… stop reading the message boards and rewatch your own show to remember what this show is; a story about people, their complexities, the moral dilemma’s that they face and how people can rise through adversity and surprise us or sink and disappoint us. (I realize this plea is too late but I just needed to say it… if only I’d seen all this Season 6 silliness coming.)
But again, I digress… Yes Darlton, it was you who set us up from the beginning to believe it was a story about good vs. evil via John Locke’s Backgammon speech but then it was you again who proved over and over again that the show was so much more than that… Lost became a painter’s palate of various shades of grey that bled and transformed into every other color imaginable. Nothing was black and white… and now, here we are, you want us to believe that MIB is Lord Voldemort and that is that. Again… Pffffft! Again, you may be able to redeem yourselves with “Across The Sea” so there is hope… but at this point it is a dim gray, barely visible slice hope for me.
Devil in a Black Dress...
So now, please remember, it wasn’t the episode I didn’t like, it was the asinine comments made by the show runners that made my blood start to percolate. It was a great hour full of amazing moments. The Kwons death, Hurley bursting into tears, Lapidus kicking down a bear cage gate, Kate getting shot (what?)… but the Altiverse story did however leave me flat. Things had been cookin’ over there for a while and now it’s all slow moving and WTF? Jack is mucking around at a dentist’s office? Bernard is acting like the dude with the bird hat in Labyrinth, finding out Locke TBI’d his beloved father in a plane crash and was letting guilt keep him in his chair? Jack being hyper fix it guy… again? I need to rethink all my Altiverse theories over the next couple weeks.
Oh… this is driving me crazy! I have a few more shots to fire at Darlton but I cannot remember them! I guess I’ll just finish with a few pleas:
Please don’t have stripped Kate from Candidate status in order to keep her around as Daphne for Fred the Final Candidate who may just turn out to be Jack. I’m hoping that Claire kills her but if she gets stayed alive for Jack I’ll stab myself in the eyes with a rusty old spoon.
Please explain why Jacob is such a prick next week. Tell where and why he got the god complex.
Please don’t make the final candidate one of the children. Pretty Please with sugar on it?
"Flower of Wisdom" the Once and Future Queen of Doom Island? NOOOOO!
Otherwise, I’m ready to buckle up and get ready for the ride where I’m anticipating a blood bath where everybody dies. And what is more fun than that? Next Monday Watch this space! I’ll be unveiling my Q and A with Dr. Francesca Tronchin, professor of Archaeology. I approached her about an interview when I first found out about a Jacob/MIB-centric episode and lucky me, she accepted. Now, I think you all should do a little homework this week as we approach this “Across the Sea” episode. The keyword is: Alexandria.
Until next time: I’ve seen Xanadu about three times… and I STILL have no idea what it’s about.
* If you don’t know who Chip Lowell is… look him up for goodness sake! This is TV 101!