My post about the newest LOST episode is over at Smartpop. Here is a sample; click for more.
But a lot of tonight’s episode felt like filler, and I think it would have even if I had not been lead to expect more with such a juicy focus at the halfway point in season 6. A lot of it had been implied before to great effect, like how Richard came to the island as a slave in the Black Rock. Some of it we had already been told, like Jacob making Richard eternal. And some of it did not really add much, like Richard’s accidental murder of a doctor to save his wife. The story of a man who wanted to kill himself but cannot, and who tries to redeem his earlier crime of murder, told with an unusual structure for the show (one massive flashback bookended by two scenes in the present) — I already saw this when Michael did it in season 4. The theory that the island was hell and everyone on it is dead had already been raised by fans AND incorporated (and dismissed) on the show when Locke’s Dad claimed it back in season 3, and when Naomi told Hurley that the rest of the world found flight 815 and everyone was dead.
One thing I did not mention there was how I was not real clear on how dramatically interesting it is to have The Man in Black successfully get someone to kill Jacob at the end of season 5, THEN show us a failed attempt in this episode, especially since we already had a sense that the successful attempt was the result of trying. And just as the Alt U is getting this repetitive structure (adventure of one player ending with that person bumping into some other member of the cast), the island U is also repeating s structure where people are picking sides every episode -- Team Jacob or Team Man in Black.
Also I don't know what to say about it, but I feel like I have to acknowledge my friend Katie's point that the women who used to be interesting strong characters, have less and less to do. Charlotte last episode being a particularly egregious example. She was like a super scientist linguist and now she is just another notch in Sawyer's formidable bedpost (along with Kate, Juliet and Anna Lucia). On a show where pregnancy is a big issue it was bound to happen; BSG destroyed Kara at the end (she SLAPS Baltar? really? Like a Dynasty character?).