“Lost”: Out With The Old, In With The New Past
It’s been two days since the two-hour season six premiere of “Lost” and I’ve finally collected my thoughts. Of course, it’s going to be difficult writing about the show as there is no way to tell what the hell is happening. Even at its most wheels off, insane moments, I always felt that I had a handle on what was happening on the show. After “LA X”…well…not so much.
Is “Lost” the first TV show that requires a legend or at least a glossary of terminology? We’ve got flashbacks, flash-forwards, ankhs, and now, we can add alternate timeline to that list. Show producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse are calling it a “flash-sideways”. I’m not a fan of that so, in an effort to be even more confusing, I’m going with New Past. Since I like to write chronologically, that’s where I’m starting.
It sure looks like the plan in 1977 worked out just like Daniel Faraday promised right? Juliet blows up the bomb (which tore me up every time they showed it) and the next thing we know, Jack is boozing it up on Oceanic 815 and not crashing on the Island. He has the same kind of chat with Rose, but then Bernard shows up and all is well. Of course, after a trip to the airplane restroom to check out what looks like a cut on his neck, he returns to his seat to find Desmond Hume chilling out in his row, reading Salmon Rushdie’s “Haroun & the Sea of Stories”.
Here’s where I inject my first idea regarding the New Past: everyone that is alive and well on the Island is going to get back there somehow and everyone that didn’t make it, is going to die. Case in point? Jack saving a choking Charlie Pace. The writers may as well have had Charlie say to Jack, “No matter what you do, I’m supposed to die.” instead of his “shouldn’t have done that” warning. It is that obvious. So Boone, Eko, Libby, Michael, and Ana Lucia are all toast.
Some of the other New Past developments was normal behavior for the Losties. Kate escapes from Marshall Ed Mars, which always seemed to happen. Sayid stares at a picture of Nadia. Locke is still wheelchair bound, faking his way through a conversation with Boone about his supposed walkabout. Although…there are some big differences. What’s this business about Hurley thinking he was the luckiest guy alive? That’s not right…but Sawyer looking all con man-ish after hearing Hurley won the lottery sure is typical. Did Sun throw Jin under the bus or does she really not understand English in this New Past life she has? What about when Kate meets Claire for the first time in the back seat of a taxi? Is Claire even pregnant?
There are lots of reasons why “Lost” has such a rabid, crazed fan base. There’s the Island mythology, the mystery, the action. For me, it’s all about the characters and their ongoing steps toward redemption. This is why the conversation that Locke and Jack have in their New Past will go down as one of favorite moments in the show to date. Their entire relationship is encapsulated in that one moment. The entire argument of science vs. faith was right there. Jack tells Locke says the airline lost his father, to which Locke explains to Jack that Oceanic has no idea where his father is since they only lost his body. There’s more than one serving of faith in that statement to go around. Jack gets to counter John’s idea of faith with an offer to medically help Locke’s paralysis. Jack tells Locke that “Nothing is irreversible“. Tell me again how people can’t adore this show?
So what now? Well, it looks like the 1977 Losties are also back in the present day but still on the Island. How does this happen? I don’t much care how or why. I’ve waited six years to see what happens to these people and I’m sure I’ll find out how they are all back on Oceanic 815 and still in the present. But for now…how about that creepy ass Flocke/Jacob’s Nemesis/Man In Black? People have all kinds of names for him, but I’m a fan of Flocke…another to add to the glossary.
So Flocke is the Smoke Monster. Are all you naysayers happy now? People always complain that we never find out anything on “Lost”, well, there’s a huge one right there. Of course, legit “Lost” fans have had that notion for quite some time. Is there any doubt that the dead Christian on the Island is also the Man In Black/Smoke Monster? What about those visions of Walt? Or even the Jacob that Hurley spoke to? I doubt that last one, but at this point, who is to say that any of the people thought dead were him?
After Flocke turns into smoke and wastes Bram and a few other folks from the Ajira flight. Then, Ben, who is the latest entry into The Saddest Man Alive competition, gets the idea that Locke just isn’t Locke anymore. He is so much not Locke that bullets bounce off of him. My guess is he is Kal-El, the son of Jor-El of the planet Krypton, but I could be wrong.
How about the beatdown that Richard Alpert took from Flocke? That was fairly shocking. He smacked him so hard that eye liner flew all over the beach. Once Flocke told Richard it was good to see him without his chains, it’s obvious that Richard was a slave on the Black Rock and Jacob saved him many, many years ago. Off Flocke goes, with a knocked out Alpert on his shoulder. What’s his plan? What did he mean by wanting to go home? How much fun must Terry O’Quinn be having playing this menacing guy?
Surely, Flocke wants to go to The Temple, which is where the Losties from the Swan explosion are set to go. Unfortunately, it was without Juliet, who had become one of my absolute favorites on the entire show. When everyone awoke after the explosion, it appeared that the Swan station had been built and imploded anyway, which makes me believe in my idea that everything is going to happen regardless of Oceanic 815 crashing or not.
How brutal was the Sawyer and Juliet stuff? Man, I thought her fall into the well and the bomb explosion was tough enough but to hear her final conversation with Sawyer and have her die in his arms? Wow. Rough stuff indeed.
Have any ideas why Jacob appeared to Hurley and told him to take Sayid to the Temple? No? Me either. It has to have something to do with Jacob visiting and touching Jack, Kate, Locke, Sawyer, Sayid, Jin, Sun, and Hurley right? Surely that is why Dogen, the Japanese guy at the Temple, and Lennon, his interpreter, asked their names. They bust open the Ankh from the guitar case and that paper had to have their names on it as people chosen by Jacob. For sure. Maybe?
On a side note, how awesome is it that the long haired guy with the circular glasses is named Lennon? Greatness people.
Apparently, the Temple has some sort of pool of water that heals people. This has to be where they took Ben after Sayid shot him and now, fittingly, they douse Sayid in there to try and save his life. I wasn’t too worried about Sayid, even after they said he was dead. It was obvious when Miles gave the impression that he couldn’t talk to Sayid after he died, like he did with Juliet who told him that the plan with the bomb worked.
The real insanity kicked in when Hurley told Dogen and Lennon that Jacob was dead. People start firing rockets, throwing volcanic ash everywhere, bordering up windows, looking for Toto, mass hysteria folks. I even paused the show, fired up a few Newports, and lined our front door with cigarette ash as a precaution. You can never be too careful.
I wonder what Lennon wanted to talk to Jack about? Do you think they know that Smokey was traipsing around the jungle as his pops? That’s what I’m picking. Unfortunately, they were interrupted by a suddenly not dead Sayid (turns out, he was mostly dead). So Sayid pops up and wonders what happened to him? Dude, you were shot by Uncle Rico, that’s what happened. Will Sayid be changed forever, like Alpert said Ben would be. Come to think of it, where is young Ben? We never saw him after Alpert took him to the Temple.
Season six is off to a pretty intriguing start isn’t it? Who knows how the New Past will catch up with the real present or if Island events in the present will change the New Past or…my head hurts. I do know that I am terrified of sharks and sure didn’t appreciate seeing that Dharma shark again…THE ISLAND IS UNDERWATER?!?! So the bomb worked and sank the thing? Then how the hell is everyone okay on the Island, in the present day?
Confused yet? Who cares? You’ve come this far, just let it happen and have a great time watching it.