Thursday, November 02, 2006

Smokey and the Bandit
Episode 3:04 Every Man for Himself
Episode 3:05 The Cost of Living

So. That happened.

So here's why I avoid spoilers. I would really have liked last night's big moment to be a shocker (especially since the rest of the episode was so dissapointing), but some DICK on a message board posted that particular spoiler without the customary 'SPOILER' tag. Like I said, DICK.

Anyway, I guess Mr. Eko's dead now. Again...huh. Ok. Apparently Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje was a real pain on set, like was rumored about a certain now-unemployed Latina cast member last season. We can't all get married and bond whilst skinny-dipping, you know. Regardless, Eko's gone. And I thought he was going to be really important to the overall arc of the island.

He was, in that he put in doubt exactly what is causing everyone's visions (Jack and his dad, Shannon and Walt, Locke and Boone, Eko and Yemi), is the island out to help the survivors, or letting them serve some purpose then killing them? And also, we needed to see the monster again and be reminded that it is a genuine threat. So how better to show that than to have it off the one who sent it cowering last season? But Eko was a strong character, he played well off of Locke, and Adewale's performances were wonderful, even if he turned into a prima-donna on-set.

But on to how the episode played as a whole, which is to say: not well at all. This was an episode for people who have never seen a single episode of LOST (yes, I know it's very important for the show's health to grab new folks, but let's not start pandering, please). The opening segment, always an attention grabber, was instead a recap how Eko came to be a priest.

Dude-I know. I know how that happened because I watched it in my living room last year, and if I've forgotten I can pop in Disc Three of my Season Two DVD set. And so can anyone with Netflix. We've got a lot to get to here, just jump right in. Man.

I also wonder how a couple of newbies, Alison Schapker and Monica Owusu-Breen got the call from the bullpen to handle a moment this major. It certainly seemed to be the writing that was off.

And Paolo and Nikki: shut up. Just shut up. "Eko's brother is in that plane!" Fucking hell. What, did she learn that little fact while braiding Claire's hair? They're like that annoying couple at the movies that won't stop talking through the feature. Nikki's a little yummy, though. Still, keep it shut sister, I'm watching my stories.

But I did like a few things, among them Patchy McPatcherston here: We'll see him sometime in Season Four.

I liked bad-ass priest Eko scaring off the villagers. Note to McFarlane Toys: this is the Eko action figure I want, gripping that bloody machete in his hand.

And the island's taunting of Eko: "You speak to me as if I was your brother." Great line, good moment, and a nice cliffhanger.

Part of the reason this one seemed so dull is that LOST had been on a roll. Every Man for Himself was some great TV. Love the torture scenes, especially the twisted moment with Ben and the bunny. And Michael Emerson's brilliant delivery on full display at the end, quoting Steinbeck while staring with Sawyer at the survivor's home island. How do I feel about that? Why not? Pour on the weirdness. I love the show most when it throws you for a genuine loop. But what I really enjoy is the character moments, and seeing the ever-proud Sawyer genuinely decimated was awesome, and Josh Holloway actually brought something to the moment. Cheers all around.

Elsewhere: the producers have been getting my letters after all...
So they teased us with a Sawyer death, and I know I keep saying it, but despite the whole Eko thing, I still think possibly as soon as next episode, James Ford's gonna bite it.

What else is going on? A lot to cover in two episodes. Jack and Juliet's moment with the whole Bob Dylan cue card thing was ok. But we saw something like that coming. I don't know if that was the most effective way to do it. But it does set the good doctor up wth a genuine moral dillema. Oh, hell, people, it's JACK. He won't kill him. You haven't been paying attention the last three years if you think he will.

And back to 3:04, and the return of Cassie with baby in tow, I can't believe that Mr. Bad Ass con artist didn't even ask for a damn blood test before giving the kid a cool $10 million. Get it together, James! You taught the woman how to run a con, remember?

So we've got one more until the break (no LOST until February, not counting the LOST Nikki and Paolo Holiday Special featuring Bea Arthur), and a lot of end will probably be wrapped up in tiny ways while probably leaving us with at least a few GASP moments to tide us over all that time. This season really has been great so far, I have faith, and Damon and Carlton writing. And Captain Browncoat himself, Nathan Fillion is guest starring. What more do you geeks need?

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