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Wednesday, February 03, 2010

TV Watch: Lost, LA X

I've had my ups and downs with Lost as seasons have gone on - but I'm really looking for to this finale season after seeing the premiere episodes. I was really worried that the bomb was going to force a repeat of the "get back to the island" concept - but what we have is far better. With the "sidebacks" looking into the alternate reality where the island is just a watery grave, we can see a great distinction between plots for how the characters have and could have developed.

The on-island reality looks like it will continue to mine the current mythology pretty well, and the writers have conveniently made an excuse for any continuity weirdness (for both realities, I suppose) by having set off a bomb literally in the past. Most importantly, though, the on-island stuff plays to the shows strengths - some mystery, some danger, some complete weirdness. I think we can safely make it to end of the show without any pitiful cabana boy story lines.

The big question, of course, is - will they explain everything? We're closing in on The Smoke Monster, but we're still pretty confused about the whispers, the lists, the misplaced items (like ... planes), etc. I assume the writers don't have a checklist of things they need to cover, which will be interesting in some points (will they explain the Adam & Eve corpses from Season 1) and not so relevant in others (OK, so they're mutant polar bears ... we can move on). I'm assuming there will be a big reveal towards the end of the show which covers at the very least the origin of the island, it's ability to heal and teleport around. What was with all the stuff about kids?

How it controls fate, though, that will be a good one. But we did get one big clue this episode, I think. Smokey Locke wants to go "home". He is bullet proof. He can read minds (or perhaps, just the memories of the deceased). He can transform into the evil smoke beast. He knows Richard when Richard was "in chains". He really has it out for Jacob, and to a certain extent - Jacob's followers. Smokey Locke and Jacob have been on the island for a long, long time. Jacob, Smokey Locke and Richard all seem to know each other - and live a long time without changes in appearance (probably because they can all change their appearance).

So my crazy theory for this week is: Jacob, Smokey Locke and Richard are all the same kind of animal. They're all Smoke Monsters. And they might well be aliens. I'd say they're just some primordial creature from out past, but Smokey Locke wants to go home - which seems rather E.T. to me.

This would be mean that any sighting of Old Smokey may or may not be Smokey Locke. Which could also explain why the creature is sometimes a big killing machine, and other times takes the kinder, gentler route.

What I don't quite get is the boundaries. Both Jacob and Richard have been seen off island. Old Smokey mostly stuck to one section of the island (possibly cordoned off by ash), and travels through the odd, mechanical sounding, vent system. But - we don't know which "monster" was which (i.e. those could be the chains of which Locke speaks).

In summary - great start to what I'm hoping will be the strongest season since the first.

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