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Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Televangelist: 'Lost' episode 10

click to enlarge BAD ECONOMY: Will work for psychopath
  • BAD ECONOMY: Will work for psychopath

Last night we got back into the typical "Lost" rhythm of one step forward, two steps back. Though nothing really pushed the story forward (er ... leaving out the jaw-dropping ending. Spoilers below the cut!), we spent time with Sayid, in true Dharma spirit, on a trip riddled with karmic retribution. It began with toddler Sayid, a Natural Born Killer, and continued through the life of adult Sayid, International Badass ... still a killer (with killer hair).

Peppered throughout "He's Our You" were Sayid's interactions with young Ben, suffering at the hands of an abusive father and desperate to join the Hostiles. (Side note: Sorry, but Dharma's "crazy teepee man" has nothing on Sayid. The strongest weapon in his spooky arsenal is sodium pentothal? Give me a break. I wouldn't have been surprised if Sayid had a resistance to it already built up in his bloodstream.)

For all of Sayid's moral quandaries, the episode belonged (as it often does) to Ben. Young Ben, who later in life would find a predilection for preparing delicious hams, uses his kitchen prowess to make chicken salad sandwiches for Sayid in the hopes of bribing Sayid to help him leave the Dharma camp for the Wild Island Beyond. The Ben-Sayid relationship has always been complex and interesting, with the power dynamics between the two always in flux. Finding out last week that Sayid and Ben would meet in Ben's early life (this time travel is wreaking havoc on my verbs) just added another layer to the complexities. I've always felt Ben saw Sayid as a true ally, although I've been misled by Ben's manipulations before (haven't we all?)

It's not often that a child is shown shot and killed on TV, especially not one who bears such a striking resemblance to Harry Potter. Even though I joked last week about Sayid wanting to kill young Ben, when the moment came it still shocked to me the core. We knew that young Ben had issues that snowballed (he takes having daddy issues to a whole new level), as Sayid puts it, to "genocide," but did Sayid's actions change the future? Could one Ben live while the other was killed?

Since we're a little past the midpoint of the season and the show seems to be shifting gears, I thought I'd take non-spoiler stock of where the show is headed. For those disappointed in the lack of Faraday and Desmond the past few weeks, there doesn't seem to be much relief to come. According to in interview The Daily Journal, Darlton says:

• As of this week (as we know), the show returns to its original format, each episode built around a single character with the backstory in flashbacks.

• The show "becomes a lot more character-centric," Lindelof says. "For those people who were more confused or scratching their heads" at the time-traveling, "it's sort of normalized."

• A major focus is the new love triangle of Kate, Sawyer and Juliet. The recalibration of "Lost" will temper the show's most confounding season yet, a relief to ABC executives. "We long had this idea to do time-travel storytelling," Cuse says. "But we were afraid that once we started implementing it, we would become a more overtly genre show and that we would lose viewers."

• But Lindelof, conceding viewers were frustrated, likens "Lost" to coursework. "College gets harder as you go on, and you're now taking 'Advanced Lost,'" he says.

Thoughts? Bring on Advanced Lost 301!

Next week: Doubt and suspicion cast upon our Losties ... like that's anything new.

Musings and Miscellanea:

- Sawyer: "How are you feeling, Sayid?" Sayid: "A 12-year-old Ben Linus brought me a chicken salad sandwich. How do you think I feel?"

- I purposely ignored the beginnings of the Juliet-Sawyer-Kate drama, because I'm sure there will be entire episodes devoted to it in the future, and yes, Hurley,  "I thought it was kind of obvious ... like who couldn't see that coming?"

- Treat of the week for Ben/Michael Emerson fans: Michael Emerson was featured in a 1992 educational video for the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Start watching for him around the -12-mintue mark. Language may be NSFW!

- Ben, how did you find Sayid in the depths of the jungle? "I looked."

- Sawyer Line of the Night: "Three years, no burning buses. Y'all are back for ONE day ..."  No one creates drama like Jack and Kate.

(Photo courtesy ABC.com)

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