Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Jacob's Foot: The Season Five Recap (LOST Rewind)
LOST Rewind: Season Five
[caption id="attachment_81" align="alignnone" width="805" caption="What a poster. I want to marry it."][/caption]
As I think I wrote yesterday, seasons three and four unfortunately do not get a rewind. But if you search through the Jacob's Foot archives, you'll surely find season three and season four finale re-posts that do both seasons justice. Plus, there's that whole entry in which I compare seasons of LOST to Mars Volta albums. But anywho, it is time to finally to do the ultimate recap to season five of the show.
I'm a big fan of season five. LOST fandom seems to be split about this season. Some have it ranked highly and others have it ranked just above the second season. The season doesn't kick into full gear until the sixth episode, "316." The first five episodes contain a massive amount of set-up for the rest of the season. Ms. Hawking insists the emotional and physical circumstances of Oceanic 815 must be re-created. Since they are only half re-created, the Oceanic 6 get separated by 30 years of time. This is confirmed by Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse on the LOST special "A Journey Through Time." The left behind Losties are foreshadowed to be in Dharma in the teaser of season five, the rules are established and established and established for time travel so the characters can later test the theory of whatever happened, happened, Faraday discovers Jughead and tells Ellie that her people need to bury it, the Aaron stuff with Kate prepares us for Whatever Happened, Happened, and etc etc. Once time stabilizes, the meat of the story takes place.
As the season aired, I always wanted more 2007 stuff. I enjoyed the happenings in Dharmaville but the 2007 stuff fascinated me. I then realized after rewatches that the 2007 story was/is a sort of set-up for what's to come which furthers my thought that there will be no time reboot. Dharma is the central story of the season. It's basically complete and will be complete once season six unwinds from that cliffhanger. 2007 just gets started in "The Incident." In "Dead Is Dead," Ilana and Bram prepare to move the box with Locke's body in it. Ben asks what's in the box and they say nothing. It's a small moment but it's something I should've been all over in my recap. Oh well. In "The Incident," a ton of things happen in 2007. We discover Locke is not Locke, Jacob's murdered, Ilana becomes very, very important, etc etc. The story just STARTS! It's so damn cool!
Well, by now the rewind dealy is pretty clear. It's more of a list thing than it is long-winded paragraphs. Oh, the long-winded entries are coming again but not in this entry. There's a good chance my final thoughts on the season will be long-winded. I'm changing a few things with this rewind. There will be no episodes you need to watch list because the whole season should be rewatched. Actually, that's all for the changes. In lieu of that will be my top 7 favorite episodes of the season.
JACOB'S FOOT FAVORITE EPISODES OF SEASON FIVE IN DESCENDING ORDER!
7. The Variable--The show's 100th episode does not disappoint. Faraday returns from Ann Arbor to tell our losties that everything he has said about time travel might be true because they themselves are the variables. We also find out Faraday's mother knew she killed her son all of her life and her son's death takes place in this very episode.
6. The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham--A journey with noble intentions ends only with John Locke's death. But he does send Jack into suicide beard mode.
5. 316--Lindelof and Cuse knocked it out of the park in back-to-back episodes. They wrote this gem and they wrote the Bentham episode. The scene between Ben and Jack as they look as The Incredulity of St. Thomas is remarkable.
4. Jughead--Occupied the 1 spot for quite a bit of time during the season. I love Young Ellie, loved the Jughead stuff, the Desmond stuff is fantastic (especially Des finally having the upper hand on Chucky Widmore). Faraday's such a badass in this episode. It's great. Oh, Jughead. What an awesome episode. And the bomb plays such a large role by season's end.
3. Dead Is Dead--In my recap I wrote, "this is one of the most important episodes" in the series. I didn't know why then and feel vindicated after that reveal in "The Incident." I think more light will be shed on the events in this episode in the final season. One of the best scenes in the episode is when Ben tells Sun that he's seen a lot of wonderful things happen on The Island but dead is dead. Little did we know that Ben spoke the truth on that porch.
2. He's Our You--Sayid's best episode of the series. This is an example of what makes LOST so good. An extremely gripping and moving character story. The ending always manages to stir some strong emotion as well.
1. The Incident--A finale that basically tops the immense finale that is season three's Through The Looking Glass. I wrote 4,000+ words on it. I haven't stopped thinking about since the season ended. Jack and Sawyer have a fight that was five seasons in the making, Bernard and Rose have one of the most touching scenes in LOST, there's the jaw-dropping reveal of Locke, the Ilana stuff. It's terrific.
THE SEASON FIVE MOST VALUABLE CHARACTER AWARD!
Yes, indeedy. Who will be the five MVC candidates? Continue reading to find out:
John Locke: Saves Juliet and Sawyer from the 1950s version of The Others, Refuses to shoot one of The Others because he is now their leader, Finds The Others camp proving that he knows the better Island than one Charles Widmore, tells Richard to see Locke two years in the future when he is born, Seeks to Know what he must do to stop the Flashes, Is Willing to Die if it means saving his friends, leaves the Island but before doing that STOPS the time jumps with a broken leg and absolutely no help at all from Christian but saves his friends regardless by stopping the time jumps, returns to real world, Visits Walt and acknowledges his existence, attempts to get all of the Oceanic 6 to return but that doesn't work out for him, AND manages to make a believer of Jack. Unfortunately, the man is murdered by Ben and the Man in Black seemingly hijacks his identity so the John Locke credentials here since the real John Locke falls out of the crate dead.
Sawyer: Becomes the leader of the Left Behinders, comforts Rose and Bernard, makes fun of Frogurt, is very proactive during the initial stages of the time jumps, wants to go to the Hatch for supplies, shows emotion about the freighter explosion because he thinks everyone he cares about just blew up with the boat, rescues Juliet from the flaming arrows, makes sure Faraday isn't killed by Young Ellie the Other, witnesseses the birth of Aaron but chooses to not interfere with the past (nor does this experience make him wonder 'oh we should try to find Claire' but I hold no grudge), protects his friends with the help of Juliet when they are being shot at while using the Outrigger canoes, Becomes LaFleur once they are in the mid-70s, saves Amy from The Others, works out things with Richard so the truce isn't broken, convinces Juliet to stay with him in hopes Locke (but for Sawyer probably Kate) returns, helps Horace after he's found throwing dynamite and drinking alcohol, becomes the head of security for Dharma, manages to seamlessly integrate Kate, Jack, and Hurley into Dharma when they return via Ajira, tries to help Sayid as much as possible when Sayid is mistakenly identified as a Hostile, helps Kate bring Young Ben to The Others so that he can be saved, tries to cover up taking Ben to The Others, is forced to bound and gag Phil because Phil saw the videos, suggests either leaving via sub or hiding in the jungle when discussing with the group how to save their asses, Is Eventually found out and Gives up the information in exchange for a trip off the Island with Juliet, Wants to stop Jack from detonating a hydrogen bomb, gets into a brutal fist fight with Jack, does not achieve his goal of stopping Jack, Tries with all his strength to save Juliet after she's pulled into the hole but can't pull her out.
Daniel Faraday: Is the only character able to explain the time flashes, the rules, etc. Tries to save Charlotte but cannot, is able to contact Desmond in the past so present Desmond can help them, Tells The Others to bury Jughead after informing Ellie to fill the crack with lead, Stays with Charlotte as Locke and the others make their way to The Orchid, Leaves The Island for 3 years to study in Ann Arbor, Returns and tells everyone that whatever think the rules are and was supposed to happen are wrong, informs Dr. Chang of the impending incident referencing the pocket of electromagnetic energy of his group and advises Chang to evacuate The Island, wants to meet with The Others, on the way tells Jack that his entire view changed on whatever happened happened and that people can change the past and that he plans to detonate a hydrogen bomb to prevent The Incident from happening so Oceanic 815 lands safely at LAX and the freighter would have never went to The Island, is murdered by his own mother.
Juliet: Figured out anything she and the others had with them would travel with them through time which is why Sawyer never lets go of the rifle, Suggests using the Zodiac to find shipping lanes, has Sawyer's back throughout the entirety of the season, tries to aid in Charlotte's recovery, translates the latin Charles Widmore and his Other friend are speaking in because, as she explains, Latin is the language of the enlightened and, therefore, the language The Others prefer, Becomes part of the motor pool in Dharmaville, delivers Amy's baby, is able to get Kate's name on the manifest before Phil finds out she's not meant to be there, does as much as she can to save Young Ben's life because he's just a kid and not the man he'll eventually be, has the idea to bring Ben to The Others so that his life can be saved, takes control on the sub in order to go back to The Island, is pulled down to the bottom of the well, finds Jughead undetonated, grabs a rock and bashes it 8 times as she yells 'come on you son of a bitch' until all goes white.
Frank Lapidus: Is the pilot of Ajira Flight 316, lands that aircraft safely on Alcatrez Island after expering major and tremendous turbulence, makes sure Sun and the people on the flight were safe and taken care of, accompanies Sun to New Otherton where they meet Christian and find that the other members of the Oceanic 6 are in '77 and members of the Dharma Initiative, tries to figure out what the heck Ilana and Bram are up to, follows them around as they burn the cabin and search for someone who can answer their question posed in latin, is the first of our beloved characters to see the dead body of John Locke.
THE SEASON FIVE MVC AWARD GOES TO...John Locke. If he didn't fix that frozen donkey wheel, all of the left behinders would've died. Here's the order:
5. Frank Lapidus
As I wrote earleir, fans are split with this season. I enjoyed the season thoroughly. Where would I place it with the other seasons? Good question. I won't answer that.
Damon and Carlton, in a recent interview, stated that they wanted fans to be thinking about the implications of detonating jughead as well as about Jacob and his "friend" but Damon makes it a point to tell the interviewer that mythology will remain secondary to the characters and that the mythology has been a device to explore and know these characters. With that in mind, my final thoughts concern only the characters and their respective arcs.
Time-travel allowed the show to do many things. What I've been thinking about lately, in regards to using time travel as a narrative device, is the theme of regret and reflection. This theme dominates the season when you think about it. "The Little Prince" brings the characters to 2004 on the night Boone dies and Aaron is born. As the characters walk in the jungle, Locke can be heard banging on the Hatch. Later, Locke reflects on that moment with Sawyer and he tells Sawyer that he needed that pain. Sawyer then chooses to not approach Kate when he sees her delivering Aaron. These two moments are sort of a microcosm of some of the things I think the writers wanted to accomplish this season. One is reminded of each character's arc during this season, where they've been, where they are, where they might go.
Damon and Carlton said these characters are connected in ways they don't even know yet on the recap that aired before the finale of season five aired so I think the big part of this season, in the midst of a tremendous amount of mythology, is to set the audience up for the final chapter of these characters.
There were tremendous character moments in this season like Sayid's struggle with his own selfhood, Kate's decision to go back to the Island to find CLAIRE. Ben's own arc is refreshed in our minds: his abusive childhood, the pain he felt over losing his daughter, his love for the Island, etc. There's Juliet FINALLY delivering a child successfully on the Island, Sawyer embracing his potential, Jack willing to believe, Jin sacrificing his wedding ring as a means to keep Sun away from the Island for her own safety, Sun desperately trying to find Jin, Miles reconciles his issues with his father, Desmond still doesn't want to go back to the Island but he travels to Oxford and then Los Angeles because he thinks he is helping his friends. Terrific character moments abound in season five.
Overall, I think the character arcs and mythology blend together very well as per the usual with LOST. They did a lot of bold, inventive things with the narrative, the structure, etc. I enjoy season five immensely. Do re-watch the season before season six begins.