Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Most Important Blog Ever: My Review of Lost's Sixth and Final Season

Ok, guys, here we go.

First, let's start with the big problems and get them out of the way...
In the season 5 finale, which I can't claim to know like I know seasons 1-3, but still, I watched The Incident many times to discuss its horribleness, Ilana says that Frank may be a candidate. Frank hears this, and asks what he's a candidate for, they don't answer him, and he never brings it up again in season 6. Frank's name was never in the cave or on the lighthouse dial. How could Ilana not know at that point who is and who is not a candidate? All through season 6 she seems quite certain (except for the Kwons). Not a huge snafu, but can only be interpreted as the writers didn't know who the candidates were at the end of season 5: Dislike.
I know this sounds picky, but it really bothers me. Why is the plane in the premiere a completely different plane from the pilot? It has different style of seats; it doesn't have that big Oceanic glass circle. Why not use the same kind plane? (Was this supposed to be a hint that it all wasn't "real"?...)
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Naveen Andrews, who plays Sayid, is of Indian decent. Every other person who plays an Iraqi is Iraqi, including his brother. This looks ridiculous. The actors have obviously different ethnicity, but they are playing brothers. They could have at least found a half Indian, half Arab to play his brother so they might look something alike.
The Black Rock vs The Four Toed Statue: I really think that Taweret would have won that battle. The Black Rock is washed ashore on a big wave, hits that statue breaking it to pieces, but the ship goes on to land untainted in the jungle, far from the statue? There are way cooler ways to explain how the Black Rock got to the jungle and how the statue broke... I guess at that point they needed to hit two birds with one stone.
This brings me to another issue: Island geography. They laugh in the face of previously established geography rules all throughout season 6. They make journeys that previously took days in a matter of hours.
For 5 seasons, they adhered to a strict subtitling rule: if the people in the scene don't understand the language that's being spoken, we as the audience don't get subtitles. For example, if Sun and Jin are speaking to each other alone in Korean, we get subtitles, but if there are other people who don't speak Korean standing by, we don't. When Sun flips out at Richard for wanting to blow up the plane, suddenly we have subtitles, even though we shouldn't because no one understands what she's saying. Not only did they break the rule, they did it for no good reason. You don't need subtitles to understand the gist of it. Why would they throw out a rule with a 5 season long precedence so late in the game?
This also seems picky, but in the premiere, Kate's bathroom door is on backwards so that she can kick it open and knock out Edward Mars. Ok, that's fine, but you can see that the door has been turned around (all of the hinges are on the outside), but they are normal on all the other bathroom doors.
In "Across the Sea" we finally find out who Adam and Eve are, but then they cheapen it by flashing back to season 1 to show flight 815ers finding the bodies. Did we really need that? They never flash back to remind you why something is important. If you're a real Lost fan, you know about Adam and Eve.
Personally, I hated the temple and everything that happened there. It didn't have anything to do with anything, and it didn't explain anything. Feel free to contradict me because I'd like to like it, but I don't.
No one ever freaking told Claire that her mom was alive and well and taking care of Aaron.
Richard joins the ranks of Matthew Abaddon as someone who is better in mystery than in reality. He doesn't arrive on the island until 1867, which appeases those who had qualms with the dynamite on the Black Rock, but I thought we got over that 4 seasons ago. His back story just isn't that cool.
Everything with Libby was crap. She messed up Hurley's episode. I thought she was supposed to be gone for good. Stupid Libby.
In the second to last scene when all the people are in the church to "move on" it's really a Hodge podge group of people. There are a lot of 815ers absent and Penny is there even though she'd never been on the island. I just wonder the logic behind who is there and who isn't there.
Lastly, I am not satisfied with how the man in black became the smoke monster. While I concede that I don't know any proper way to make a black smoke monster, throwing a dude down a cave waterfall into light seems like one of the least cool ways.

Now, unanswered questions & things that should have happened, but didn't...
Food Drops! I know they touched on this in the Sri Lanka video, but they never explained why they are still getting food drops in 2004 and presumably after (Rose and Bernard have dharama food even in the finale.)
Nothing ever happened with Annie. She was introduced in Ben's first centric episode and it seemed like she had a big impact in his life... then she was never heard or discussed again. They really should have brought her back to help explain why Ben is the way that he is. They should have shown Annie being put into mortal peril by the wrongdoings of the Dharama Initiative thus inspiring Ben's contempt and later destruction of the DI people. I thought maybe they were holding off on this to let the actors become older so that when they did do the scene they'd be teenagers. I was wrong.
What's with the ash ring that stops the black smoke monster?
What's about Walt and his powers. This was such an interesting aspect of seasons 1&2. They never explained anything about it. What happened to Walt? How is he? I'm worried! There was so much drama behind getting him off the island, but then he's basically off the show. Was he too busy doing KFC commericals to make an appearance in the final season? I don't even remember them even mentioning him at all.
Sayid never discovered that Kelvin Inman, who made him a torcherer, was on the island and pressed the button for years. Why not have a 2 minute scene where he finds this out and understands that his whole life has been leading him to the island and that everything is connected?
We never saw Juliet with her sister off the island. They dedicate a lot of time and emotion to their relationship in previous seasons, and this relationship is always at the root of Juliet's motivation. They could have easily just thrown her in the concert scene (then David would have been with his aunts on both sides).
I'm sure people are tired of me harping about this... but Locke should have been Boone's dad. There was so much foreshadowing of this connection in season 1 (Locke sacrifices his son for the island, at one point he even calls him "son"). Boone's dad is never mentioned. They could have easily made that connection in season 6, and then they could have been together as father and son in the last scene of them moving on.
Who the hell is Jacob's mom? Seriously.
Who built the lighthouse, statue, and light plug thingie?
What exactly is the loop hole that allowed the man in black as Locke to kill Jocab?
What rules was Widmore breaking when he had Alex killed?
What's with Ethan? He's introduced as Ethan Rom in season 1. In season 5 we find out that he is the son of Horrace Goodspeed and in the Dharma Imitative (at least as a baby), but then he's with Ben when they take Alex from Danielle. Then in the flash sideways he's Ethan Goodspeed (which makes sense, but why throw that in at all if it's never explained?). Oh Ethan, you're so mysterious.
Lastly, I was really waiting for a line of dialogue between Jack and Sawyer in the finale about bygones being bygones.

Things that seemed important at the time, but never went anywhere:
Claire's baby's daddy, Thomas. Whatever happened with him? His painting is in the wall of Widmore's office, yet he never returned. I always thought he'd play a role in how things worked out.
The monk at Desmond's monastery has a picture of Eloise on his desk... I was waiting for him to come back and be a major player with Eloise.
Nothing ever comes of Aaron. He's such a big part of the characters motivations. I was always waiting for him to matter to the island, but I guess he's just a normal baby. Same with Clementine. While I'm glad they didn't do a second generation thing where all of the original survivors kids go back to the island, I wish they would have mentioned her.

Ok! Now- Stuff that I liked! (in no particular order)
I love all of the irony in the flash sideways (i.e. Ben gives his father oxygen instead of gassing him to death, Desmond finds Penny running in the stadium, Locke cripples his father, etc).
In the flash sideways, it seems like everything is either the same or opposite as it was before, but everyone still has the same problems. I like that. It's like either your the evil lying leader of "the others" or a high school history teacher, but your emotional problems are still the same.
I love that it's Desmond who figures it all out (with the help of Charlie and Daniel) and brings everyone together.
Hurley is the new Jacob. Thank goodness. He is also the only candidate who has never killed anyone (except in pure defense). He is "good."
Elosie is wearing pins that are like "the mark" that Juliet gets for killing Pickett. She has one for everyone that we've seen her kill.
Juliet is Jack's son's mom. Called it the second they showed that Jack had a son. I love being right.
Great casting for the Jacob/MIB flashback... the boys looked just like the adults and were good actors, and Allison Janney was great and creeptastic. I liked the boy in black's intrigue with the game on the beach.
I love the little things like Richard reading Luke 14 in his jail cell.
Desmond talks Sayid out of killing him. Desmond is that shit.
I love Sayid, Jin & Sun's death. It was well done. I like that Sayid died saving the others and that Jin & Sun died together after they reunite. (Is Kate going to raise Ji Yeon now? ha.)
I liked the freighter peoples role on the periphery. They didn't take up too much focus, but we got to see them again.
There were a lot of parallels in the finale to other important episodes (there were a lot of allusions to Man of Science, Man of Faith, Through the Lookings Glass, and the pilot of course.)
The Jack and "Locke" fight at the cliffs was pretty bad ass.
Jack and "Locke" ultimately end up working together to end everything, but they are expecting different outcomes. It was an interesting dichotomy to watch enemies working together to achieve a common goal while thinking that the other is dooming them self in the process.
When Jack fixes Locke in the flash sideways (which was... whatever) was the first time that Jack ever cared for Locke medically. Locke never went to Jack for medical help on the island, but in the flash sideways he fixes him. I like irony.

All and all, I liked season 6. Nothing can beat seasons 1, 2 & 3, but season 6 kicks seasons 4 & 5's asses. I could keep going and going with this, but I have a feeling that no one even made it this far.
There are a lot of issues here that need further analysis and discussion when I return.

Also, there should be a spin off sitcom of Hurley and Ben running the island.

Stay tuned for an epic vacation blog!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

No Title

The last week went by really fast... maybe because I was sucked into a Lost watching time warp...

Teaching at the university has been fantastic! The students are great, there are so many resources and I get to pretty much do whatever I want (like have them watch and analyze the language and cultural issues in the Lost pilot parts 1&2). On Friday night, we went to a birthday party for one of Kinsey's students. It was a good time. Everything about living in Diego and working at the university is amazing.

Now I'm in Tana and about to head out on an epic adventure of baobab trees and tsingy forests, floating down a river, and traveling across some of the worst national roads in country. It should be a grand time. I wish you were all here to go with us!

You'll have to wait for my Lost review... next time...

If you don't hear from me in the next two weeks, I was eaten by a crocodile.