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Thursday, November 02, 2006
TV Round-Up
Lost: The Cost of Living
So here's what I don't get--why did the island send Locke on the vision quest to save Eko from the polar bear only to kill him three or four days later?

I've stated in the past that I feel as though the island is giving people what they need and then allowing them to exit. And this theory could sort of hold for Eko, I guess. Eko felt like he needed to confess his sins due to his Catholic upbringing, but all his life he refused to confess his sins because he felt he hadn't really sinned. In Eko's mind it was all about survival. So he had to lie, cheat and steal to survive and he did pay a lot of terrible prices in terms of the loss of life of those around him.

I did like the reasoning as to why Eko was compelled to build a church on the island. But as Eko slowly faded from life, I felt a bit disappointed becuase we may never get to find out what happened on his trip to London and how that affected him. Honestly, I think I would rather have seen that than the flashbacks we got here.

And yet as I think about it the episode, I can't help but wonder if Eko's death had any significance beyond just the "oh we're killing someone on Lost this week." I know that as the season began, Lost couldn't know that Criminal Minds would make a huge surge in the ratings (why I don't know but there you have it) and they'd need some kind of event to possibly draw back in some fans and the buzz. Because that's what it felt like Eko's death really came down--an attempt to gain some ratings, some buzz and some attention to the show. Looking at Eko's story arc, the character and where the storyline was, I'm not sure killing him off at this point made a whole lot of sense. Again, the thing I keep coming back to is why would the island save him only to kill him a couple of days later. It just makes no sense.

Of course, maybe it will once I figure out the overall context of season story arc.

Meanwhile, some other things are happening. We find out the Others have some disagreement in the ranks when it comes to Henry/Ben's leadership. We find out Ben is dying from the tumor. He sees Jack as a miracle, meant to save him. I loved Henry/Ben's reasoning that he finds out he has the tumor and two days later a spinal surgeon literally falls from the sky. That's interesting. It also makes me wonder that if Jack were to "throw" the surgery as Juliet wants him to do, would the island let Henry/Ben die? Also, I have to wonder if this isn't some kind of test for Jack to find out where his loyalties really are. And does the Hippocratic Oath apply here and override Jack's personal feelings? Part of that is "do no harm" which I think killing Henry/Ben would be doing a bit of harm.

Also, I have to wonder--is Jack possibly being groomed to be the new leader of the Others should Henry/Ben pass away? Now that could be interesting.

And then we have the new castaways who join the part to find another Hatch and figure out where Jack, Kate and Sawyer are. I have to admit that as I see more of these two, I find it a bit....disconcerting that they're there. They seem almost too self aware with lines like "Yes we were hanging around the past 70 or so days, but we just didn't anything interesting until now." Honestly, it felt a lot like a character one of the post-movie seasons of The X-Files who served as the audience and went "So just how did you two get out of Antartica?" and other such questions raised by the show over the years but never really solved.

I have to say that of the five episodes this year of Lost, this was the most disappointing. I don't really feel like much, of anything, happened. Maybe it's just that I've never been a big fan of Eko's and so I felt a disconnect with the flashbacks. But there was just something missing from the episode and I got the feeling we were treading water between last week's revelations and events and next week's big fall cliffhanger.

Jericho: Long Live the Mayor

It's almost irritating how Jericho is teasing us. How much longer can we dance around the issue of why Jake left, what he was doing while gone and just what brought Hawkins to town? I swear the scenes where these little tidbits are brought are so frustrating because it's so obvious they're trying to go for some exposition. There is nothing subtle about it and it makes the complete lack of answers nor any interest in giving us any all that more apparent.

And that takes me out of the episodes in a huge way.

Not that there was really a lot to draw me in here.

The town continues the "me first" attitude that was prevelant in the last episode. I guess coming together to harvest the corn was a one-time thing since now everyone is looking out for their own interests. It's interesting to see how everyone in town justifies their selfishness and self-preservation attitude. I will find it interesting to see what Skeet and Eric find the outside world like as they go for the antibiotics for their father. Will it be the type of situation described by Jonah or is that an attempt by him to grab for power while Mayor Hawkins is incapacitated?

Meanwhile, Skeet is negotiating with the head of the head of the gang from last week....his biggest wish--to see his daughter. Who happens to be Emily who was the brother of Charlie! Wow, the coincidences just fly left and right on this show. Seems Daddy is missing the quality father/daughter time and that is his demand for giving back the food. At first, Emily refuses but then gives in when Skeet might need medicine for his father. Daddy doesn't have it but gives back the food and gives Skeet back his older, faster car. And yet as we find out one tidbit, we are left frustrated because we still have no clue what this horrible thing Jake did is. Did he kill Charlie? Or did he enter him in the book of the month club without his permission? We just don't know yet and as each week goes by I fear that no matter what the revelation turns out to be it will be disappointing.

And then we've got Hawkins who saved his estranged wife because....yeah, so if you've got that one figured out, let me know. I don't see why you'd want to spend the apocolypse with your estranged wife who pretty much hold you in utter disdain, but that's just me. Maybe I'm just not a romantic.

Now, the plotline I have liked is Mimi's. Her having to come to grips with the fact D.C. is gone and she's essentially having to start over in Jericho is working. Her scenes in this episode as she realizes how the words on her documents are just words now and hold little or no meaning were nicely done.

But other than that, not a whole lot to recommend. And there wasn't even a huge cliffhanger even to sustain my interest until next week. That has been Jericho's saving grace until now and it may be the fatal flaw for the show in terms of keeping me as a long-term viewer.

posted by Michael Hickerson at 11/02/2006 07:21:00 AM | |
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