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Lost: The Other 48 Days

Ana Lucia: "You've been waiting forty days to talk?"
Eko: "You waited forty days to cry."

Was this a water cooler episode, or what?

The "Fusies" were lucky. They had (1) Jack, to care for them; (2) Locke, to hunt for them; (3) Jin, to fish for them; (4) the fuselage itself, with knives, guns, clothes, drugs, and so on; and (5) a minimum safe distance from The Others. Was this intentional? If this is all an experiment, which is the control group, the Fusies or the Tailies?

My regard for Ana Lucia went through the roof here. Unlike Jack, she finds leadership as natural as breathing. Like Jack, she immediately started trying to save lives; she pushed Eko aside to do CPR on Emma. The first thing she said to the panicked Bernard was, "What's your name?" before she found a way to get him down. Don't rescue workers do that? After the initial attack by the Others, she instituted safety protocols, and she led them away from the beach when she realized it wasn't safe. And she knew the knife was no longer used by the military. Is she military?

Ana Lucia and Eko are a classic example of traditional male and female role reversal. Eko's gentleness and strong compassion for others is a complete contrast to his somewhat scary appearance. While Ana was saving the little girl, Eko calmed her brother and took him down the beach, away from the possible trauma of watching his sister die. Eko was the one who retrieved the bodies from the sea. He said he would pray for Bernard's wife, and for the rescue planes. He remained silent for forty days, almost as if he were doing penance for killing one of the Others in self-defense. Is he clergy?

There was a strong, early hint that Goodwin was the mole; he was in the Peace Corps, which is such a sixties sort of thing, and he looked a bit old for it. Nathan was a great red herring; he was even from Canada, like Ethan. (The whole "I'm from Canada" thing reminded me of the Coneheads. "We're from France.") Poor Nathan. He died because he creeped Ana Lucia and Libby out. Life is not fair, especially on the Island.

Goodwin was so much more accessible than Ethan, although now that I think about it, he was something of a one-note, goody-goody type of character. Ana Lucia pointed out that the Others didn't have shoes. Goodwin did, didn't he? Was he one of the Dharma "program directors," as opposed to being a recruit? The other person that felt Dharma-like to me was Libby the shrink. If I hadn't seen her during the opening sequence, I'd be wondering if she were a Dharma observer.

We learned a new tidbit about the Peter-Pan-like Others: they pick their victims because of their goodness, which explains why they target children like Walt, why Eko was one of their initial choices, and why they wanted Claire. Goodwin wanted the Tailies to think they picked the strongest and toughest, but that can't be true.



This episode had a lot of terrific scenes, but I thought two were just exceptional. The first was Ana and Goodwin outfaking each other with the knife. It was so well-acted that you could practically hear what the two of them were thinking. The other was when Eko finally talked and Ana finally cried. Very powerful.

There were no flashbacks. Well, okay, the entire episode was a flashback. No eye opener, although after the exceptionally cool initial crash sequence, we saw what Ana Lucia saw while she was underwater. It was pretty much her episode. I'm looking forward to her upcoming confrontations with the Fusies Leadership Council (Jack, Locke, and Sayid). That is, if Sayid doesn't immediately go ballistic, and take her out.

Character bits:

We got more of Cindy the flight attendant, who sounded Australian. (She was in the pilot episode last season; didn't she give Jack the bottle of booze?) I wonder if she's still alive. She probably is, since the Others appear to recruit, not kill.


How did Bernard wind up in a seat? Wasn't he in the bathroom? He must have come out and strapped into the nearest seat. He appeared to get thinner as this episode progressed. Sort of a shout out to "why isn't Hurley getting thinner"?

We finally got the other end of Boone's radio conversation, which was with Bernard.

The teddy bear belonged to the little boy, Emma's brother. We didn't get his name.

Bits and pieces:

— Maggie Grace was still in the cast, because we had to see her getting shot again from Ana Lucia's perspective. It appeared that Ana Lucia didn't even see Shannon; she just saw clothes and movement.

— The Tailies didn't see monsters, polar bears, or ghosts. No weird occurrences. Although there were whispers... near the end, when the Tailies were getting close to the Fusies. Okay, I rest my case. I wonder if the Monster and the polar bears keep the Others away?

— The Dharma symbol in the Tailies' bunker had an arrow instead of a swan.

— The locker in the bunker contained a glass eye, a Bible, and a radio. What on earth could those objects signify? The glass eye made me think of the eye close-ups that often start an episode, but I doubt that has anything to do with it.

— I don't have to point out the religious significance of forty days, do I? Or that the first season of Lost lasted forty days?

— The catch-up bits at the end... I understand why they added them, but dramatically, they really weren't necessary.

Quotes:

Libby: "Do you really think it's possible that one of us is one of them?"
Ana Lucia: "Why do you think I'm digging this hole?"

Goodwin: "We're not savages."
Ana Lucia: "If I were a savage, I would have cut off his finger already. (pause) That's tomorrow."

This was such a well-written, well-acted episode. Three and a half polar bears,

Billie
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Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.

4 comments:

  1. As I am rewatching Lost, I remember this episode from the first time feeling: "I don't know these people, so I don't care, and show me what happends to Shannon"

    Now upon second viewing, knowing what will happen later..... ohh spoiler alert, don't scroll down if you haven't seen the series till end



















    Hope that was enough. Too bad I don't know how to do spoiler tags, or I would.

    Knowing what will happen to Shannon, that urge was a bit less there, but I still felt like not caring for these people much. After all, only one of them will even be in regularly till end...
    So, filler ep for me, tho well done. And a good way to let us wait in suspense for what Sayid is going to do...

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  2. I strongly disagree with you about Ana. I think she is a horrible person and I find myself wanting someone to do something nasty to her. Yes, she is a natural leader and yes, she had made some good decisions. But, she is so cold and calculating, so driven, so cynical, so unwilling to trust anyone else, so unwilling to listen to any of the others when she had made her mind up, I can find nothing within her that I find redeeming.

    I also find that I don’t trust her at all. When Goodwin asked her about whether or not she had kids, I am sure she lied. She’s also far too unwilling to give away anything about herself. I respect people who are diffident; I don’t respect those who don’t share because they refuse to trust.

    And, frankly, the scene at the river with Eko was a little too on the nose for me. Forty days? Really? Are we meant to see him as Christ? Especially after seeing him gazing with awe at the Bible. And Ana’s tears were a little too much a little too late for me. Normally when I see someone cry, I turn to mush. I just wanted to push her into the river and tell her to get over it.

    This was an interesting episode and I’m glad they did it, especially if these people are now going to be part of “our” group. However, forty something minutes is not enough time for me to grow to care about any of them (however, re-reading this, it was enough time for me to strongly dislike Ana!). I would have much preferred to see the fallout from Shannon’s death and then see this.

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  3. I really enjoy this episode, but I've got that pro-Ana bias. And I think the montage at the end--mostly because of the score--has incredible impact.

    Goodwin has been in so many things since Lost, and I will never think of him as anything but Goodwin.

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  4. 4.5 wet dirty stolen teddy bears.

    That opening scene deserves to be on my list of the best TV anthology scenes. Darn, I oughta make an essay on this. (And I could review Leverage for this blog, that would be a blast, but fudge, I'd have to retire NOW. And I could give 10 % of my salary so that Josie may get her laptop faster)

    Yes Cindy was indeed the one giving Jack the booze. "That was not a strong reaction. That was not a strong drink". New classic.

    After seeing (at least) 10 times (and I'm not tired of re watching it again and again) that fabulous fan montage of the crash (some people out there are really talented), I wasn't surprised when I saw Goodwin....I was prepared ! Was bathroom guy an accomplice or not ? I guess not, according to the aforementioned montage.

    40 days...not necessarily a number for Christ, but that number is indeed significant for religions and esoteric reasons. Cool. Love this show more and more and I still have 4.6 seasons to go !

    ReplyDelete

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