Friday, May 11, 2007

Episode Blog - The Man Behind the Curtain

Talk about a hectic week, not only has it been one of the most immense ratings for ABC, Lostpedia has also had its share. Only on two other occasions have we had such pageviews (and that was a finale and a premiere respectively). Nearly 2 million views combined with forum and blog on one day - oh how we wait for the finale. By the way, we know "Lostpedia has a problem" (and yeah that message got annoying real fast for me too), but rest assured by next week there should be some nice new extra servers to cope with the excess traffic, so we'll be all ready for that 22nd ep. And we might even have the lostbook on by then.... Anyway, like the unanswered question section for this episode article, there's a hell of a lot to address, so let's get going with the flashbacks.

DHARMA, how we've waited to see them in their element. But how established were they when Ben arrived? They seemed to have just about started up operations after building, having already met the monster apparently as the sonar fence was there. Did that have relevance to the Hostiles attacking too? And why did the ground shake when they did - my guess is from the "explosions" Roger mentioned. Maybe that's the crossed out station on the blast door map - Others blowed it up. Speaking of the Others, when they say native, is their consensus that that means like hundreds of years? Seemed to me more like they'd been there 50 years-ish before DHARMA, but then are they still seen as "natives"?

More focusing on Ben, it was interesting to see his progression from passive to assertive - if only his first act of assertion wasn't genocide huh. I quite liked the dolls addition though, adding the whole symbolism of nuclear families and the maternal one which Ben kept, filling that void of his that he never felt like he had good parental figures. I wondered later as he ran in the jungle if the whispers were in his head? Or are they more of the mystic side of the Island? And then he met Mr Eye-liner, who apparently drinks from the foundation of youth. Why didn't they just use another actor to play Young Richard? It was a little bad trying to make him pass for like 20, and then while Ben completely changes, he looks like he's just had a haircut and quickly fixed the mascara, and then just put on a gas mask. Not that I wasn't quite impressed with his acting though, and his character is more interesting by the episode. Final note in flashback, how come they can gas the staff in an unenclosed area, outdoors? Was it some kind of biological anthrax kinda thing? Oh and that Horace guy - a mathematician - always wearing an Arrow jumpsuit - interesting.... maybe that station was more Valenzetti equation focused?

In realtime, nice to see Locke trick Ben into taking him to see Jacob (damn right they finally go looking for answers). And then Alex, did she know Ben might try and kill Locke? Or was she showing that she cares about his safety while not at all for Ben, hence his surprise about it all? Maybe he hadn't seen her in days and she appears on his birthday to help the man who held her hostage? There's definitely major issues between them too, and not just her choice in boyfriend. But my attention was soon drawn away to that line of powder. So, dynamite for security mechanism or voodoo magick circle keeping evil spirits in, pick your side of the realist-supernatural sonar fence! I should really add a voting poll for this one, as I'm still undecided and need some opinions.

Regarding Jacob, did anyone else think that Ben was genuinely just being crazy with an imaginary friend? I was thinking that DHARMA were all hippy, maybe he took a few too many psychedelic drugs. In fact I think I preferred the imagination thing, before than the spirit within (I really am weary of the "its all magic" jumping of the shark road).

Lastly, to the main camp, and Juliet's secret revealed. Is she really playing double agent though, and when the teams arrive to kidnap Sun, will she switch sides yet again? Looks like a big finale though, a big fight and rescue only a few miles away. All the main narrative themes together. Who will live, who will die? My money is on Jack going, and to be honest I won't mind as he's really been laying it on these last few weeks. Talking over the top of people, especially this episode with Sawyer - who is he to say effectively "answer my question first" after the tape revealed his friend is a traitor. Jack really needs to get his priorities straight.

So is Jacob a prisoner? Why was Ben so shocked that Jacob spoke to Locke and said "help me." Will we actually find out this Season?
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