Friday, November 13, 2009

2:9 What Kate Did, 2:10 The 23rd Psalm, 2:11 The Hunting Party, 2:12 Fire + Water

The good news: I'm caught up on rewatching seasons one through four, and I have a notebook full of copious notes about my thoughts from those episodes. The other good news: there are only 20 days until the final season begins. (TWENTY DAYS, Y'ALL!!!) The slightly bad news: There is no way I'm going to catch up on blogging my rewatch by the time the new season begins. So it's time to kick things into high gear - four episodes at a time.

2:9 What Kate Did

-I know there are a lot of Kate haters out there, but I'm not one of them. Yes, she often gets to be the one to throw complications into the storyline, but for the most part I sympathize with her.

-The first big mystery in this episode is the black horse. If I'm remembering right, we still don't know if it was real or an apparition (smoke monster related?) We can be fairly certain though that it's not a figment of Kate's imagination, since Sawyer sees it too. Whatever it is, it works very well as a metaphor in Kate's story. She has a lot of black horses in her past and she spends a lot of time running from them, but that dark side of her is also what has protected her and kept her safe.

-I remember watching this the first time - I had some friends over to watch and when Kate gets on her motorcycle and speeds away from the house my friend Michelle said "Uh-oh, it's going to blow up." And then it did. I was thoroughly impressed.

-Jin finally gets that pesky handcuff removed. I bet Daniel Dae Kim was sick of wearing that thing.

-Sawyer speaking as if he's Wayne (asking Kate "Why did you kill me") takes on new meaning now that we know that Locke's body was being used for someone else's purposes during season 5. Is this an early example of this phenomenon?

-We've waited this long to see Jack and Kate finally kiss, and it has to be about the most unromantic moment possible. It's pretty clear that Kate only kisses Jack because she's so freaked out about what Sawyer said to her. Way to kiss and run, Kate!

-While I'm on the subject, the whole Kate and Jack vs. Kate and Sawyer (and Jack and Juliet vs. Sawyer and Juliet) love triangle is something else that we'll hopefully get some closure on in season 6. I honestly don't know who I want her to end up with. I think she has better chemistry with Sawyer (cage love, anyone?) but she and Jack work so well together as a team - it's less romantic, but more practical. Then again, Jack and Kate had their chance to make it work off the Island, and that didn't turn out so well.

-I like the parallel in this episode between Wayne and Sawyer. Kate is simultaneously drawn to Sawyer and repulsed by him because they are similar.

-Moving on from the relationship drama...Eko shows Locke the missing pieces from the Orientation film. He prefaces his discovery by telling the story of Josiah. In addition to discovering the Book of Law, he was a reformer; he kicked all the pagans out of the temple, had pagan priests executed, and even exhumed the bodies of dead pagans and burned them on their altars.

-In the missing piece of the film, Marvin Candle says that using the computer to attempt to communicate could lead to another "incident". Is he telling the truth? Or is this warning part of the ongoing experiment being conducted on those in the hatch? In a way, you could say that Michael contacting Walt with the computer did eventually lead an incident - the first one. Had Michael not made the deal with the Others that got him off the Island, things would have played out much differently and it's likely that the Losties would never have been transported to the 1970s...and they are the ones who caused the Incident in the first place. Did I just blow your mind?!?!

2:10 The 23rd Psalm

-Most of the characters have had rough childhoods, but this episode shows that it just might be Eko who wins the contest on this one. So heartbreaking.

-It is really amazing that pretty much all foreign locations are filmed in Hawaii. Africa, Berlin, Kansas, Florida, London, they can do it all, and rather convincingly I think.

-We find out the origin of the Virgin Mary statues, which is one of my favorite subplots of the whole show. I love the symbolism of heroin inside a religious figure - who was it who said that religion is the opiate of the masses? Eko's back story shows how religion can be used to wield power over and deceive others, and how it can nevertheless be redemptive at the same time. Sidenote - Lostpedia says that one of the statues can be seen in Eloise Hawking's office in season five. I'll be watching for that!

-Eko literally has blood on his hands when Yemi's plane takes off.

-Eko's ethical dilemma is a classic one that the Losties face again and again: if you have to do something to survive (or protect others), can it be a sin? Eko decides that it's not, but later the smoke monster seems to disagree with him. The question for this episode is, why didn't the monster finish him off this time?

-When Michael indirectly asks how old Locke is he replies "I'm old enough." Why would he be elusive about his age?

-Eko and Charlie recite Psalm 23 (slightly incorrectly). I think it's interesting that they recites the King James version of the text when most people these days use a modern translation. It makes sense though that the writers would go for a more ancient feeling rendition.

Psalm 23

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death [Eko says "though I walk through the shadow of the valley of death], I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

2:11 Hunting Party

-We learn why Jack is no longer married. Yes, he was a distant husband, and kissed Gabriela, but still the moment where Sarah reveals that she is leaving him is devastating. Jack is a jerk sometimes, but I really felt for him in this one.

-Jack's failure to save Gabriela's father provides some insight as to why he doesn't believe in miracles.

-Sarah's pregnancy scare mirrors Kate's - both during her marriage to Kevin, and on the Island with Sawyer.

-Jack asks Ana Lucia how long it would take to "train an army" - hmmm, we seem to have lost that storyline somewhere!

-Once again, Kate is left behind when the men set out on their hunting party to find Michael. And once again she acts like an idiot and follows them, resulting in her capture by the Others.

-The moment where Tom yells "Light 'em up!" and we see that circle of torches is still so eerie.

2:12 Fire + Water

-I really hate seeing Charlie go all crazy. I like sane, nice Charlie much better.

-Despite crazy Charlie, I like this episode because of all the religious symbolism in it. I kind of miss all the references to Christianity we got because of Eko and Charlie. Maybe we'll get more in season 6?

-In a Christian context, fire and water often refers to baptism. In Matthew 3:11 John the Baptist predicts the coming of Jesus when he says "I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me will come one who is more powerful than I...He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."

-The painting in Charlie's dream is based on Andrea del Verrocchio's The Baptism of Christ.

-Charlie can swim in this episode and in later ones as well. But in season 1 he clearly says he doesn't swim. Continuity error, or alternate time line?

-At the end of Charlie's dream we hear the "whoosh" sound that usually indicates a flashback.

-Charlie's need to protect and care for other people is probably his defining characteristic. This is played out in every one of his flashbacks, as well as his death.

-Liam is hurt that Charlie is trying to take care of Megan, when it's not his responsibility. In the same way, Charlie is hurting Claire by trying to care for Aaron.

-After Locke thrashes Charlie he leaves him lying in the water, which could be seen as a very unconventional kind of baptism. Locke even punches him three times - one for each member of the Trinity?

-Speaking of unconventional, Eko is not your average priest. As far as I know, none of the major Christian traditions teach that John the Baptist baptized Jesus to cleanse him of sin - the traditional belief is that Jesus, as God in human form, was the only sinless person ever to live. To suggest that Jesus was a sinner who needed to be baptized is an extremely heretical notion. Eko also baptizes Claire without asking her about any of her beliefs. Baptism isn't traditionally about protection, it is a statement of faith and commitment to a system of belief. But I guess it fits in well, since Eko wasn't actually trained as a priest in the first place.

-Why did Charlie keep that stash of heroin? Was it really always his intention to dispose of it?


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