Cathode Tan - Games, Media and Geek Stuff
logo design by man bytes blog

Thursday, April 30, 2009

TV Watch: Lost, The Variable

I've got mixed feelings about this Faraday outing, to be honest. Although, for a pleasant change from some seasons past - I don't feel like the episode was bad or in some way derailing the plot in general ... there was just some stuff I wasn't entirely sold on.

First, the good. The show continues to mine the DHARMA material for gold. I feel like we've got our island back, and it is mysterious and spooky and good like it was always supposed to be before the writers kept filling it with a bunch of twisted lack of answers and meaningless back stories. DHARMA, Widmore, the Others - all feel like real portions of a tangible storyline which is actually going somewhere.

And the portions of this episode that really worked for me are the parts that spoke directly to that. Daniel's many connections to the island, to Widmore, etc., fleshed out his character and aspects of the island's story as well. Even his matter of fact explanation of more or less the entire plot of the show so far seemed real.

What I'm not totally buying is this sudden concept that people can, in fact, change the future. That the past was a fixed object was a very powerful narrative rule. The recent episode about Ben worked off this premise quite well and was one of the reasons it worked for me.

Now Faraday says that the Losties are variables, not constants and that they can change the future. Yet Jack seemed pretty determined to try and change Ben's future, only to be foiled because (we thought) it was his destiny to fail. It was a pretty clever play on free will and fate.

Daniels' explanation that the Losties are beyond the laws of relativistic physics didn't really fly with me because I didn't really hear an explanation. It was like the worst suspension of disbelief moment ever. I'm supposed to believe that this rule which has been talked about to some length is possibly tossed aside simply because Daniel says that's the way it is.

Also, I'm supposed to buy that exploding a hydrogen bomb to stop the future is a good idea. Because Dan said so.

It's a lot to swallow, but of course Jack's character seems to have devolved into being the bitch of whatever theory gets put in front of him, apparently is buying into it wholesale. Course, wasn't it Jack who decided it was time to stop pushing the button in the first place? And if Daniel is right, mistakenly dragged everyone back to the island? Does this guy ever get tired of being really, really wrong?

(Because of course, it is very possible that Dan is wrong here)

Probably not, and I'm guessing this season will end with highlights which will feel very similar to the button pushing violent sky finale from days of old.