Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Lost: The Others side

Spoilers for the "Lost" premiere just as soon as I finish nibbling on my fish biscuit...

Nicely done, "Lost." First you open with a neat parallel to last year's beginning scene (the '60s wall of sound pop tune, interrupted by an explosion -- albeit in the oven, not of the hatch -- a previously-unknown person going through their daily routine, etc.), then you give us a fairly tense hour that does give away a few answers (The Others did work for the Dharma Initiative, they have some kind of suburban enclave in the middle of the island in addition to access to a lot of the Dharma stations) and you even manage to give me a Jack flashback that didn't bore the pants off me. (Yet another thing for Jack to feel guilty about: his obsession with his ex-wife ruined what was probably his father's last, best chance to stay sober.) I liked Elizabeth Mitchell, liked Sawyer's battle with the hamster feeder, liked Henry/Ben's explanation for Kate's seaside lunch (though yet again, Evangeline Lilly reminds me that she's the show's weak link, acting-wise) and didn't even mind that we didn't get to see Hurley, Locke, Jin, Sun, Mr. Eko and the rest of the gang.

As someone who long ago reconciled himself to the notion that "Lost" is going to be all journey, no destination, I had a fun ride tonight. What say the rest of you?

20 comments:

Dan Coyle said...

(Putting on my Amanda Marcotte Hat) Yeah, but Jack's obsession with his ex would have been quashed if she had just told him the guy's name. So subtly, it's all her fault- I'll fully admit it might be my own paranoia, but Abrams has always struck me as pretty misogynist. But that, as they say, is just me.

Now that' I've got that out of the way, once again it was skillfully written, masterfully directed, and well acted- if it weren't for Matthew Fox, I would have destroyed my TV during the Jack flashbacks a long time ago. Elizabeth Mitchell was wonderfully creepy in all her Mitchelly goodness. Just by looking at someone Michael Emerson can unnerve me. He's one of the most terrifying villains in recent memory.

Can't wait for next week!

Brian E said...

Gotta love a show whose cliffhanger might not even be dealt with until a third or midway through the season; it's the only show I can think of that could get away with such a thing. I guess when you're still paying off cliffhangers from tens of episodes before, it makes sense. But yes, very good episode. So Ben/Henry and Jack have something in common, eh? Beautiful blondes just don't appreciate them.

EzekielRawlins said...

Good ep, nice opening which had me thinking I was watching Desperate Housewives for a sec...a bookclub?

Loved the whole Sawyer/'Zeke'(Tom?) interaction-can't wait till those two finally go at it.

Liked the whole show, but I found myself wanting more.

Pete said...

I'm betting the guy who helped Sawyer escape is just a plant from the Others. Clearly it's a tactic they favor and are ready to implement at a moment's notice. The "escape" may be aimed at helping the other "prisoner" gain Sawyer's trust (although Sawyer is still easily the least trusting person on this island of emotionally wounded and wary people). I mean, this other prisoner clearly had the ability to get out of his cage before, and he chooses that particular moment to do it?

Christy said...

Greatly exceeded expectations. Of course, I wasn't expecting much, so I was happy. The Jack hate grows. Would have rather seen Sawyer in the shower, but I guess they wanted to get the pretty girl in a dress.

No numbers?

I'll keep watching.

J said...

Did she actually say they worked for Dharma? I thought she avoided it with "That was all a long time ago." Either way, remember: They lie, they lie!

I avoided the first two seasons when they aired, catching up on DVD. Have to say that it's much more enjoyable to wait a year and blow through than to wait week-to-week.

Matt Hunter said...

Too...many...commercials! Otherwise, though it wasn't the episode I expected of a premiere, I liked it.

jim treacher said...

I'm with Pete. "Chachi's" escape attempt was a work.

No numbers, no hatch, Evangeline Lilly in a towel... Fine by me.

Kim Cosmopolitan said...

Dan --

The guy who created Felicity Porter and Sydney Bristow, not to mention Irina Derevko, is misogynist? Do explain.

BF said...

* Mr. Fake Beard said "the bears figured it out in 2 hours". Might those bears be of the polar variety?

* How long till the Others mid-island enclave becomes known as Mysteria Lane?

* Yeah, Cage Guy was totally a plant.

* If this episode had aired last season, we would have zoomed in on those wanted posters behind Jack in Jail to see Kate's Mugshot. I guess we're no longer playing 6 Degrees.

* Pure Speculation: the lists that Ethan and Goodwin were ordered to produce was so the Others could fax them back to the home office and dig up the personnel files.

Chris said...

"* Pure Speculation: the lists that Ethan and Goodwin were ordered to produce was so the Others could fax them back to the home office and dig up the personnel files."

That sounds about right -- there must be SOME contact with the outside world, if only so everyone can get a copy of the latest book for the reading group.

rick said...

One of the reasons Lost sets the bar for serialized-dramas-that-raise-more-questions-than-answers, is because they typically do a really good job at balancing the mythology with simple, interesting story-telling. Not all of the flashbacks are great (or even good), but its those individual stories that keep me coming back week after week (and keep me from throwing a shoe through my television during those episodes that maddeningly answerless).

Heroes should take a page (or fifty) out of the Lost playbook and realize there has to be a "B" story.

jim treacher said...

Watch the opening scene again. Some interesting clues about the relationship between Juliet and Ben, and between Ben and the rest of the Others.

Oh, and the book is Carrie.

Daniel Warreb said...

I generally judge Lost by the number of times a character does something that makes absolutely no sense. This episode only had one, Jack at the AA meeting, so I would rate it as pretty good.

Dan Coyle said...

"The guy who created Felicity Porter and Sydney Bristow, not to mention Irina Derevko, is misogynist? Do explain."

Felicity Porter- mousy wilted flower who followed a guy all the way to NY and college just because he wrote something nice in her yearbook.

Sydney Bristow- joined the CIA because "I didn't fit in anywhere", not because of, you know, a commitment to any ideal or a feeling of wanting to make a difference. Or wanting to fight for justice. Primarily angsts or is concerned with her relationships with men above all else.

Irina Derevko- you almost got me there, but I was always amused with no matter how mean Jack Bristow was portrayed, he was always let off the hook, where Irina never got such a three dimensional portrayal. She was always the Bad Parent, always looking for an angle, and in the end she chose power over her daughter. But Daddy. Daddy was mean but deep down he cared. Daddy knew Syd was going to join SD6 and didn't try to stop it, but hey, he's really a good guy after all. He feels bad about it.

Granted, I know this is an unpopular interpretation of Abrams' work, but it's how I feel and react to it. In the cases of Felicity and Sydney, there's also the fact that they're played by two actresses who flounder without really good material.

But Abrams' men never come off that great either, but at least they have ideals, goals, excuses. His women are always primarily defined by their relationships with men- what's the first substantial thing we learn about Juliette? That's she's Ben's ex of course.

That's how I see it, though. I put up with it because Lost is not a show where he's put in a lot of input, and the guy knows how to direct.

I just wish I didn't want to through his characters through a wall.

Todd VanDerWerff said...

Sydney was also relentlessly "handled" by the men around her, rather than ACTUALLY taking charge of her own life, lest we forget.

Dark Tyler said...

Εven for "Lost" standards, I think this was a ridiculously uneventful hour. And in the name of everything that is holy, no more Jack flashbacks.

BF said...

Sorry Dark, but we know at least one more is coming. The previous flashJack showed Matthew Fox shirtless ... and he didn't have that "5" tattoo on his shoulder. The producers have long speculated (threatened?) that how and why Jack wound up with that tat will be a flashback story.

Dan Coyle said...

You know, the guy who raises his hand and questions "killing innocent people" to Mittlewerk in that Dharma Initative training video... he sounds a lot like Jack.

Katie V said...

"As someone who long ago reconciled himself to the notion that "Lost" is going to be all journey, no destination, I had a fun ride tonight."

Exactly! So many people complain about this, but once you accept it, you can just sit back and enjoy. I long ago tired of the usual tidy wrap-up in 40 minutes (or however long the show is without commercials) that you get on procedural shows like L&O and CSI.