Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Early Reaction to Lost: "We have to go back, Kate!"

Now that was a download.

After what felt like a slow episode with fewer revelations than met the eye last week, an otherwise stellar final season of Lost returned to form in a big bad way with Episode 610, The Package.

It hit me so hard, in fact, that my decision to forgo early reaction mania--after finding myself flip-flopping ceaselessly over last week's episode--and not do an instant recap again this week has magically evaporated into the ether.

Lemmmee see---nope, no hesitation anywhere to be found. 

For anyone else who missed Sun and Jin, it was gratifying to see them center stage in what felt like the smoothest example of the blending-through-the-years style of storytelling Lost has been employing so far this season.  The call backs were legion, yet they were smooth as silk.  And each one of those callbacks provided either relevant information or, in the case of Sun's garden, relevant and poetic location.

And the revelations came fast and furious tonight, blowing the cork-in-a-bottle metaphor out of the water when it comes to clearing things up for us.  Last week's beach blanket bingo between Jacob and Richard now feels more like an intermission compared to the way the mythology kicked into high gear tonight.  So much came clear that any potential to keep looking for head-fakes was sliced to the bone. I never felt misled or confused at any time; rather I just felt like everything was sliding into place, with the emotional character stories and the action/adventure tale of mystery just dovetailing right into sublime perfection.

So, let's make a quick list of what the heck just happened: (just click "read more" below) . . .

Heisenberg Was Right

No matter what Lord Jacob says during any given episode of Lost, his mere presence on the Island affects everything else on it.   Forget Lost theory and literary precedent, because even the real life world of science makes that clear, and has since 1925.

It's called The Uncertainty Principle and it has all sorts of applications when it comes to Lost.  And since Ab Aerterno was the first Lost episode to do absolutely nothing for me, let's get all pretentious and dive far too deep into Lost subtext than is probably mentally healthy, using the Uncertainty Principle as our jumping off (into the abyss of crazy) point.  Remember, tongue is firmly planted deep into cheek here today.  If not, I'd have to do a couple of thousand words on Richard's beard and Isabella's heaving bosom, and that could get real ugly real fast.

The Uncertainty Principle was devised by a dude called Werner back in Germany in 1925.  Some people call it the Observation Effect, because it basically states that the very act of observing something inevitably has an effect on it.  For good old Werner, that meant that if he ever tried to observe a sub-atomic particle called an electron, what he would come up with was not where and how that electron was moving in space, but rather where and how that electron was moving in space after it had been altered by his observing it.  If he had left that poor little electron alone, it would have been in one spot; but by just looking at it, Werner had altered its speed and direction, thus changing the very thing that he wished to objectively examine.  Later experiments proved Werner Heisenberg's theory to be correct, at least when it comes to atomic particles.

As time went by, other men in other fields began to use old Werner's principle in a philosophical and cosmological sense, and some of those men interpreted it as meaning we can never know anything for certain.   And while Werner Heisenberg was talking about sub-atomic particles, many a learned man has taken Werner's work and found applications for it in pretty much every single aspect of life---with the practical upshot being that the observer affects the behavior of the observed whether the world being observed is micro or macro---as I would think anyone who has ever seen a reality television show could attest.

When Big Brother is watching, behavior is always altered.  This has shown to be true whether in a lab, in a (cash) cab, or while you are doing your job while being reviewed by your boss. 

It is the philosophical aspects of  Heisenberg's equation to which I think any viewer of Lost can relate, and to which any theorist of Lost must adhere .  For if we cannot really know anything for certain in the physical world---the world we can see and touch---then how can we ever really know anything for certain about the metaphysical world, be it the afterlife or on a television show?  Until we actually die and find out (or until we reach The End), it's all just so much speculation.

Or put another way---until the clock strikes 11:00 on May 23rd, 2010, we simply cannot know for certain what-the-frak Lost is about.  And no matter how much Jacob doth protest, he has never been able to not interfere, because his mere existence is interfering with everything on the Island, which I am fairly certain our man Jacob knows all too well.

But if you want to know what I am uncertainly certain about, read on after the jump. . .

Sunday, March 28, 2010

More Lost from a lost soul.

So, yeah, a trip to the emergency room sure puts a crimp in both your weekend and your blogging.

Of course, I would imagine that having an actual life in general would also put a big crimp into your blogging (although it probably boosts your weekend exponentially), but I wouldn't really know what that is like.

Still, it does seem to me that the more boring and pedantic things are out in the real world, the more time I have to be spewing out into the Great Wide Internet what-ever-in-the-hell has my mind occupied at any given pedantic moment.  Unfortunately this weekend was--for once--not one of those times.

So, no time to write this weekend, but plenty of time to think while waiting to find out if my dad had pneumonia and was going to be admitted to the hospital (he did, and he was).  And I came up with a doozy batshite-crazy theory for Lost.  Let's hope this week is more boring and pedantic than was this past weekend, so then I can get everything down in electrons before the next episode airs.

Yeah, that means this blog is going more and more Lost-centric for the next nine weeks, much to the relief of Jeff Zucker--although much to the derision of probably everyone else.  But I knew once I pulled the cork on my Lost mania and wrote one piece, I'd never stop.

C'est la vie.

Anyway, as a teaser let's look at something that was said on the last episode, but was then immediately discarded as total BS by most everyone---that Jacob is the Devil.  Everyone thinks that line was completely false and just part of Smokey's long con of Richard.  But what if Jacob really is the Devil?  And what if being El Diablo (or some rough approximation thereof) does not in any way change the fact that Jacob is the supposed to be the good guy in this little morality play?  What if we are not just supposed to have sympathy for the Devil, but to actually be rooting for Him?

Oh, now that's a little psycho, eh?

I have a lot on this, and I will be working it out and putting it down in electrons soon.  Check back tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Of Mice and Me

Yeah, this is why I love Lost.

24-hours later, and after writing quite a bit of drivel already, I rewatched this latest episode, Abe Vigoternum, with my spouse.  And I saw a lot of things differently, as can often happen when watching any show that is made up of about a gazillion uni-colored jigsaw pieces which are all the size of an ant's testicles.

It it just made me giddy, because I do love the way that either missing or observing even the smallest detail in any given episode is able to then move me drastically one way or the other around the board of a theoretical game called I like to call Life: The Lost Version.   So it was exciting--especially once the embarrassment wore off.

And you can find out how exciting and how embarrassing right after the jump (might as well jump!)...

Addition by Addition

Two posts down is my early Lost recap of the episode I am now calling Poor Richard's Soul-on-a-Rack. Yeah, it was tough finding an appropriate word that rhymed with "Almanac," so I just bailed on it and took a bath. Hopefully I will come up with something better later, but it at least rhymes and makes sense, even if the poetry of the syllables takes an awful beating in the process. Jacob and the Man in Black really did play tug of war with our Maybelline Man's soul last night, did they not?

Obviously this episode got to me more than my initial recap would suggest, else why the frak would I still be writing about it over and over again? So, just putting this up now to alert you that I added quite a bit to the end of the original Recap Post that is two posts below this one. Just some new nuggets that came to me whilst wasting my lunch hour reading more posts and comments elsewhere.

And, yeah, I said, "frak." I'm still trying to keep my Lost posts obscenity-free, because lord knows that nothing else I write here will likely ever be.

Doc Jensen Bows Before No Man

While everyone else was rushing around like maniacs (myself especially included) trying to post an immediate reaction to Lost last night, the man himself, Doctor of Doctors, King of Kings, EW's Lunatic-in-Residence, Jeff Jensen, either spent the night writing the longest dissertation in the history of Lost, or else he got some sleep.

Who would have thought Doc Jensen was the most sane man in the cyberspace room? Show of hands, everyone.

I know this to be true because I went over to his online pad this morning at 10 am---and still no recap. Now that is a dude who secure in his Lostinlinity. Here I thought I'd be the one to not write much of anything last night, only to cogitate and come up with something definitive later. Turns out I was only just barely behind the commercial scribes with my post, and I was at least half a day in front Doc J, who likely has much more interesting (or at least crazy) things to say about Poor Richard's Bogus Journey than I ever will.

Of course, I didn't lurve it like he did, so that gives him a leg up on me (and get your frickin' leg off me, Doc). Oh, and he's paid to do it, so that gives him a leg, an arm, a shoulder and a toe up on me.

After sleeping on it, I am still mystified that the very smart dudes who run Lost thought I should and would become emotionally invested in Richard the Cipher and Isabella the Heretofore Unknown and Mostly Dead's 15-minute microwave Chiquita banana love story. But apparently I am alone on this one, as the early reaction I have seen has been overwhelmingly positive, with one dumb douche even going so far as to rip Zap2It's Ryan McGee a new one over the fact that Ryan merely said, "I really liked it, and that it was "only" the third best episode of the season," rather than, "I frakking lurved it and want to make love to it over and over for the rest of my pitiful little existence."

Gotta love the Internet, don'tcha?

Anyway, I did love the Jacob-MiB stuff, and I talk about that love, as well my quibbles, in my mini-recap below. But I would have loved all of that stuff even more if it had been allowed more time to grow and breathe and develop at leisure. All we really got from those handful of minutes of screen time was pretty much summed up with Jacob giving Richard the, "Jug of wine, loaf of boar, and thou," line from the Rubaiyat of Omar Kayyam. I would have enjoyed more time and depth to that explanation, if not for clarity's sake (because I thought it was pretty clear), then for an increased and more nuanced dramatic stake, and perhaps for a bit more myth downloading since, in my mind, they really did have the time for it.

I'll probably dissect the Island, Richard and Randall Flagg more later, but for now check out my quick grasp below, while I actually try and get some real work done today. Gotta support my new blog habit, you know.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Early Reaction To Lost: Poor Richard

Yeah, this will be interesting. I rarely watch an episode of Lost and know exactly what I think about it right away. Oh, sometimes I love it immediately and sometimes I don't, but to at least some degree my opinion of a given episode changes with time. The show is so good, so nuanced, that often my opinion about any given episode reveals as much about me as it does about the show. I change, so my opinion about a thing of depth and complex subtlety changes with me (as I think happens for most everyone over the course of a life lived well). Lost certainly has a great deal of depth and complex subtlety; thus in ways often minor (and occasionally major) I look at every individual part of it with a strange eye each time one passes by me anew.

This is what comes to mind as I endeavor here to write my first ever immediate reaction to an episode of the show. Over at the commercial sites (EW, Zap2It, The Watcher, Sepinwall) where I most often go to get my fill of gab-gab on one show or another, I am pretty sure they are under some pressure to get stuff up quickly. We live in the world of the 24-minute news cycle these days, and if you're late, you might as well not even be there.

I'm under no such obligation, as I currently write for an audience of one (new blog and all, you know), so I have a lot more freedom. I can cuss my brains out when I feel like it (which is often, but not tonight), and I can wait until next Tuesday to write up my "immediate" thoughts on this Tuesday's episode if I so desire. So, I have no idea how long or short this entry may be, but I do want to get something down right now, if for no other reason than to enjoy seeing for myself how right or wrong I am about anything in particular when more is revealed later, or to see how my overall opinion of this individual piece of drama changes as the days and weeks (and months and years) roll by. It tickles me to be either right or wrong about this show, which I have always taken to be a good sign about the level of its quality.

So, after the jump, here comes my initial reaction to the hours old episode of Lost that finally reveals the industrial accident Richard Alpert experienced while interning one summer for Maybelline.

(click below to cont.)

Jay Leno Was A Big Fat, Big-Titted Failure---Even Jeffrey F. Ucker Knows That (so why the hell don't you?)

So, the latest bug up my booty comes from the still out there, still alive and well, still active and pissing me off notion that Jay Leno at 10 pm actually worked financially for NBC exactly the way they expected it would. The idea behind this argument is that NBC was making money off Leno at 10, and that NBC was never expecting to pull in real ratings, anyway--just ratings that would make them money.

In other words, this moronic sentiment can be summed up thusly: Leno at 10 worked for the network; it just didn't work for the affiliates.

Well, I cry BULLSHIT!

And I cry a whole lot more after the jump.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Hey, What About That Sideways World?

Yeah, so I got myself so het up about my spoiler discussion below that I never really did get around to writing about what I believe to be the connection between Stephen King's Dark Tower sideways world and the one in Lost. I guess that just means I gots me some more writin' to be doin', eh?

I'll get to it---promise. When? Who the fuck knows? It was five years between posts before the last one, so let's not all get our panties in a bunch and think it's coming this week, this month, or even this year.

OK, it is coming this month. I'm not going to let this blog go fallow for another five years again, if for no other reason than writing is as fun as reading is fundamental. And if I really want to keep writing, then I guess I actually need to . . . well, keep fucking writing. Every day and about something, even if it's about how bad my gas happens to be at that moment, or about the way the leaf I am watching fall to the ground outside my office window reminds me of. . . OK, fuck that. I won't get that crazy with it. I'll take a day off before I write about a leaf falling to the ground outside my window. But I'll try really, really hard not to take too many days off, because I know there are literally tens of people (or at least 10 people) out there waiting for each and every word. Tens of insane, bubble-headed acolytes, who have nothing better to do between visits to YouPorn but wait for me to analyze the Lost Sideways World. (And think, motherfucker, before you click on that YouPorn link, because it's exactly what the hell it sounds like---you don't just have to go clickin' every link I put up just because it's blue).

But, hey, where else are you going to get a link to RIF and YouPorn all in the same paragraph? Nowhere, my friends. Nowhere.

So, I'll get to the Sideways World, and whatever-the-hell else I happen to pique on during any given day, but not today. Tomorrow, perhaps. And if not tomorrow, then definitely later this week when I write up my first ever Lost recap.

In the meantime, suffice it to say that I think that it is very possible that what we are seeing on Lost is merely an alternate universe, rather than a reboot of the time-line to which we have borne witness for the last six years. I need to cogitate a little more before I start putting cursor to monitor, and I may even change my opinion as I write it all out (wouldn't be the first time), but for today I merely decided to go back and rework my last post a bit (mainly cleaning up some syntax and adding in a few fun and/or informative links).

Now, I have to go shopping, and I have to do some yard work if the shopping doesn't take too long, and I really should actually make up for the lost work-work time I wasted blathering on and on here yesterday (yeah, like that is really going to happen).

So, Namaste, and thankee-sai for reading.

Friday, March 19, 2010

On Spoilers or: How the Most Sensitive Person In The Room Finally Won (and how that all pertains to season six of Lost)

So, it's been, what, four years? Did ya miss me?

Yeah, me neither.

Anyway, I took a nice long break because I actually thought I had found a job where I could write for a living. Seemed real enough for a while--there were paychecks and everything--but it was more ephemeral than I realized, and then it was gone.

For a while there, I started hijacking other people's blogs, writing voluminous comments at the end of other people's creative works---attempting to get my write-on by glomming onto other people's hard work (well, I guess writing some shit and hitting "publish post" ain't really hard work, but you get my meaning).

Eventually I realized that I should just get off my butt and start hitting "publish post" on my own blog. Maybe no one will read it, but who the hell is reading my comments over at EW, The Huffington Post (which I found out is not a site devoted to legalizing weed, much to my surprise), The Watcher, or Zap2It anyway? It's not like I was going to be able to build my own cult following there. And what is online writing good for anyway if you cannot assemble an army of zealots capable of storming the gates (either physically or metaphysically) of whatever site, corporation, politician, or celebrity who has put the bug up your ass this week?

So, I'm back, and I am talking about spoilers, baby. That is the topic that has put the bug up my ass this week. And is it not fitting that something so trivial is what finally motivated me to post here again? For isn't obsession with the trivial not the Internet Incarnate?

Well, that and selling shit. And porn. Lots and lots of porn (apparently, or so I have heard).