I’ve been liking this season of Lost, more than most of the others. I like the overall sweeping arc of it. I enjoy the flash-sideways. I like that things are coming to a head.
Yes, we’re getting too close to the end, and there will be hundreds of questions not answered. That’s for another day.
I enjoy sitting in front of the television set, and escaping to the Island for an hour, and I enjoy how the characters are progressing.
However, last night was really really REALLY mediocre, and totally exposed so many of the problems of the show.
Okay, Lost is a fan of using contrived plot devices to have you learn about the characters. Flashbacks into parts of a character’s past. Flash forwards into their future that may be affected by their choices in the current episode. The interweaving of the lives of the characters on the show.
Last night was totally about satisfying the consistency required for the plot device. And as such, it died on the vine.
First off, Jin and Sun, who were very interesting characters, two people who could show how a married couple can function in adverse circumstances. How they can triumph over personal adversity and personal conflit. And how commitment and love are very strong.
Separately, there was a sense of self-sacrifice from Jin, who was developing into a very strong character, establishing bonds with the other characters. But Jin really became window dressing. Jin doesn’t seem like a man who has been separated from his wife for the last three years, and never expects to see her again. Jin just follows the crowd. He starts to seem bad-ass at times, and other times, just is window dressing.
Sun, started off as a very interesting character when separated from Jin. She took over her father’s company, raised her daughter, and sought out a path of vengeance against the person who separated herself from her true love. But then, when given a chance to reunite with her husband, she abandons her daughter (we have no idea where she is), abandons her duties as the head of Paik Industries, and abandons her vengeance against Ben Linus (a known liar who says he can get her back with Jin).
So, these two characters, who were once VERY interesting, are now shades of themselves, and have lost all potential to be really interesting, are forced into the flash-sideways plot device. And not surprisingly, it turns out to be a lousy effort.
Okay, so Sun’s father, Mr. Paik, is the head of a major multi-national corporation, Paik Industries in Korea. He is not a stupid man, by all depictions. He also has underworld and nefarious dealings in all worlds. He is a learned worldly realistic businessman with a very good comprehension of the criminal world. This man, apparently forgot about United States (and most nations) Customs laws, and gave Jin $25,000 to hand-deliver to Keamy, who is a hitman. Total idiocy.
In addition, this show is set in 2004… you would never send cash to a hitman in the United States in a bag… you would wire the money… You would put it in an overseas account. You would use your interests in the United States to have them supply the cash. In what world would you send it in a bag on an airplane.
Sun has a hidden bank account that she has kept money from her father. Okay. It’s very secret. Her father doesn’t know about it. But he has the authority to close it? And leave his name on the transaction notice, that it is closed? I can accept that Mr. Paik is powerful enough and intelligent enough to trace money he has given from his daughter. And that he would be aware of any bank she placed the money in. But that, he has the legal authority to close an account that his name is not on? Sure, he might be powerful enough to close the account behind the scenes. But to have his name as the man who closed an account that isn’t in his name. And have the bank teller just mention it as if it’s normal. Either Sun is stupid or the writers are, or the intelligence is on the cutting room floor.
And really? $25,000 to kill someone? I mean, it’s a lot of money. Not that I know the going rate for murder. But, still… Seems kindof cheap.
Mr. Paik obviously doesn’t want his daughter killed, so how is she supposed to get back home? The way that Keamy plays it, she’s going to know that he killed Jin. She’s powerless to do or say anything about it?
Keamy gets Mikhail to translate for Sun and Jin. He has no stake in the outcome, sure he might get money from the deal. But he doesn’t seem to be loyal to Keamy. And for the most part, seems friendly to Sun. So, he’s not going to drop his weapon and let Jin walk away? He’s going to take a chance that he’s not going to get shot, for maybe $3,000 – $4,000. Really?
Keamy is going to kill Jin, but only if he gets his money. What the hell is he going to do, if he doesn’t get the money? Kill him twice? I guess threatening Mr. Paik with Sun’s life would be an option, but… then the money would have to get to Keamy in some other way, than two people bringing $25,000 in a bag from Korea!!!!!
Stupid all over
On the Island
On the island was better, not by much, but better.
Sun and Jin’s whole motivation has been completely reduced to finding each other. Sun never mentions her daughter EVER. Jin spent the last three years, learning English and having a life, but that is all reduced to, finding his wife. Okay, I get it… but… a little more depth please.
Jack was so angry with being manipulated a few weeks ago by Jacob, that he smashed the lighthouse mirror. But now, he’s a follower/believer. He’s now the man of faith. I get it, in terms of transformation, but there seems to be a missing piece in the motivation. He’s now Mr. Relaxed, there’s all a purpose behind this?
Widmore sends a team to do recon on Locke’s group. Apparently the Fake Locke has awesome powers, but can’t be bothered with sentries?
They decide to take down the entire camp with tranquilizer darts. The whole group. No one is missed. None of the kids. Just to get one guy, and it’s Jin. Obviously, the Fake Locke needs these people to get off the island, why not take them out?
And, now it’s hard to figure out how many days the second plane has been on the island. According to Lostpedia, they’ve been on the island 9 days. And according to my memory, Desmond was with Penny on the boat, just 1 day prior to the plane taking off. So, in 10 days, Charles Widmore has:
- Found and captured Desmond (and presumably Penny)
- Had a submarine in the west coast area
- Found a way to locate the new location of the Island
- Learned/realized that Jacob was dead (or was going to die)
- Packed up a sonic fence to repel the monster.
- Was fully aware that Jin would be on the island
That’s a lot of planning, or total crap.
Anyway, it’s still a good show, but this one really was disappointing in many ways.