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Posted By Kent Merritt



He Touched Me



The end is near!
Soon, we shall all know the truth! 
Soon, all of our questions will be answered! 
Soon, we will be Lost no more!

As it is with any great mystery, there is always that point where the story ends and the mystery is revealed.   And sometimes the actual mystery is better than the actual revelation.  Fortunately, in the case of Lost, the revelations are still pretty darn satisfying!

With Ab Aeterno, (latin for 'since the beginning of time') we are now officially rounding the corner and heading down the jungle path to seeing the epic story of Lost come to an end.  Epic, because evidently what it all really comes down to is a showdown between Good and Evil.  Kind of ironic that all the the main characters we've cared about and rooted for over these past five years are nothing more than pawns in the game of life.  But then, aren't we all.

We learned that Richard Alpert arrived on the island as a mere mortal in the late 1800s on board the Black Rock.  We also learned that it was indeed Jacob who brought the ship to the island, and it was also the Black Rock that smashed into the giant statue, leaving nothing but a giant footprint in the sand.

And, we learned exactly how and why Richard was 'touched' by Jacob and thus given the 'gift' of immortality.  Careful what you wish for, Ricardo.  We also learned that the island is actually a metaphorical cork!  A way to keep evil bottled up and away from civilization (not exactly sure if that plan has really been very successful, though).

In one of the very few flashbacks I've actually enjoyed watching, we learned that Richard Alpert - Ricardo Alperto(?) - was a condemned man, accused of killing a man all in the name of love (so beautifully represented in such a few short scenes).  Ricardo's backstory was epic in itself, and Nestor Carbonell was excellent throughout.  The only problem I had with this episode was why Isabella, the love of his life, showed up on the island.  After all, doesn't a person have to die on the island in order for the Black Smoke to suck out some of their DNA and manifest as that person?!  I had a bit of a problem with that.

What I did not have any problems with were any of the scenes with The Man in Black.   Too bad this character was given such short shrift throughout these six seasons.  One mystery still remains as to where this character went, since the Smoke Monster is now using John Locke's body.  Hopefully, we'll get a Man in Black-centric episode before this whole thing is over.

I'm guessing we'll still get a few more curve balls thrown at us before this whole thing winds down.  If all we have to look forward to now is the final battle between Good and Evil, and which castaway sides with which entity, it could get a bit boring.  These 'immortal' characters are much more interesting to me. I think it was very wise to decide to end this series after 6 years.  It would've been a bit of a letdown to invest say, 8 or 10 years in this show and the 'main' characters, only to learn that they were really just the supporting cast after all.

Then again, I might be getting ahead of myself. Something tells me that the producers still have a few tricks up their sleeves, even after giving us such a rich and satisfying episode as Ab Aeterno.  And fortunately, unlike reading a great mystery novel, taking a peak at the final few pages of this tale just isn't possible.

Posted By Kent Merritt


Ford Hybrid


I'm really getting tired of starting each of my reviews for Season 6 with, "Once again, how did NOT crashing on the island cause THIS to happen?!"  I still haven't quite figured out how Sideways World is such a completely different place for some castaways and yet not so different for others (Jack still being a doofus doctor in both worlds). Evidently, blowing up the island in 1977 must've changed all of these character's lives from that point on, and we're just now catching up with their lives post-non-island crash?  That sorta makes sense....right?!!

Because that's the only way I can be at peace with the concept of Jim and Miles growing up to become undercover cops, Ben growing up and becoming a wimpy history teacher, Hurley becoming the luckiest person on the planet, and Jack having his own dysfunctional son, all before the events that led up to the plane NOT crashing on the island in 2004.  I guess the only constant has been the fact that John Locke remains a loser in both worlds. And speaking of constants, whatever happened to Daniel Faraday and Desmond Hume?!   Why aren't they showing up as anyone's sidekicks in Sideways World?!  As intrigued and invested as I have been with Lost over the past 5 years, I am really hoping that this Sideways World stuff is not going to be clever but insignificant filler material (or possible opportunities for Lost spinoff series).


And as fun as it was seeing Charlotte showing up again (at least she's still an archeologist, only one who prefers digging through underwear drawers) I really don't care that Sawyer - sorry, Detective James Ford - was rejected by her, anymore than I care that Sideways James enjoys TV dinners and Little House on the Prairie reruns. Give me more of Crazy Claire and her creepy rodent skull baby! Who would've thought that Emilie de Ravin would've been such a primo psycho! That hug she gave Kate was almost as disturbing as watching James Ford having an epiphany watching Michael Landon on an episode of Little House on the Prairie!

As I have stated before, I really only care about what is going on at Island World this season. Give me an hour of Island plot and I'll be happy. Just as long as it doesn't focus on Kate, Jin, Sun, Sayid or Jack. Oh, who am I kidding, just make the last few episodes about John Locke, Ben Linus, Crazy Claire, Jacob and the struggle for good and evil and I'll be happy.

As far as advancing the plot this week, we at least got to see that Charles Widmore is safely hiding away on Hydra Island awaiting a showdown with the Man In Locke. Bring it on!  Although, I'll be more than happy to wait another week for that to happen, since it looks like next week's Richard-centric episode will finally shed some light on some of the island's ancient history.

Bring THAT on!


Posted By Kent Merritt


Gentle Ben


This week's Ben-centric episode presented us with a kinder, gentler Ben Linus.   A Ben Linus who might have lived quite a different life if fate had dealt him a bitter - er, better - hand.   If he would have grown up with a semi-loving father, a semi-decent job, and at least half of a spine. 


Because even in the sideways world, this kinder, gentler Ben was still a schemer. He just didn't quite have the cojones to pull off any great schemes. "You can have my parking spot" he offered to an indifferent Sideways Arnzt in a lame attempt to make a friend after his failed attempt at blackmailing the school principal.  Because in this sideways world, Sieways Ben really doesn't care so much about success, power, or the promise of a better parking space, as he cares about being a nice guy. Sideways Ben realized that doing the right thing was more rewarding than being devious, deceptive, and scheming your way to a better life.


Personally, I prefer the devious, deceptive and scheming Ben. When he confessed to Ilana that he would be returning to Locke's camp because "He's the only one who will have me", I have to say that I cringed a bit.  I suppose the writers are showing us that Ben is repentive and therefore worthy of redemption, but it sort of feels a bit of a cheat to see him spill his guts like that, then turn and follow Ilana back to the beach like a lost little puppy.


Other than this episode being all about the Benjamin, this episode also provided us with a Big Reveal revolving around the mysterious Richard Alpert.  It turns out he was 'touched' by Jacob, which bestowed upon him the gift of immortality. Or, semi-immortality, since he is capable of dying, just not by his own hands. So, does this mean that the other castaways are now all immortal, since they were all 'touched'?!   If any of them do actually make it back to the real world, they might have a hard time explaining why they will never, ever age! That's really good news for Hurley, since he won't have to worry about dying early from obesity-related diabetes!


So now with Ben a sympathetic character, Sayid a cold-blooded killer, and Jack showing more faith in the island than even the Immortal Richard Alpert after daring the island to blow him to tiny bits, the lines of good and evil are being drawn in the sand.   And just as it's getting hard to know who to root for at this point, along comes Charles Widmore with a submarine full of troublemakers.  At least now we know what Jacob's last words meant!


For the record, Michael Emerson should be awarded another Emmy for this episode. What a tremendous range he showed in both sideways world and island world! A couple of weeks ago, I predicted that the final scene of Lost would be a recreation of the beach scene between Jacob and The Man In Black, where John Locke inherited the island and a newly possessed Ben repeats the line, "Do you know how badly I want to kill you?"   However, after seeing this episode, I'm beginning to think that the same two characters just might make it as the final representatives of Island Good and Island Evil, only this time, with a redeemed Ben being the inheritor of the island, and the envious John Locke still steaming (or make that smoking).



Posted By Kent Merritt



Choosing Sayids


Once again, how did NOT crashing on the island change Sayid's past to where his loser brother got his girl and Keamy became a mobster chef?!!


I recently read an interview with Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof stating that they couldn't decide whether to have the result of setting off the nuclear bomb cause the castaways to being thrown back to the future on the island, or put them back on the plane, avoiding the island altogether. So, since they couldn't decide which to do....they did both. After all, they knew that the die hard fans would follow them anywhere. Personally, I think it was a mis-step. I will follow these guys anywhere, but I won't necessarily like it.


Mainly, I prefer to stick with the island storyline. That is where the action is, and I really don't see how the off-island sideways world events have any impact on where the action is. Of course I could be wrong, but for now that's my story and I'm sticking to it.  Besides, I really don't care if Sideways Sayid is confronted by Sideways Keamy or teams up with Sideways Jin anymore than I cared about Sideways Locke being interview by Sideways Rose or becoming teacher's lounge buddies with Sideways Ben!  Okay, enough of my bitchin'.


What I do care about is watching the Locke-ness Monster and Sayid going medieval on the Temple folk. Now we're getting somewhere! Although I really liked Dogen and am sorry to see him go, at least this whittles down the cast a bit so that we can focus on the main characters as the series winds itself down.  As long as they leave Miles alone to continue his wise-cracking!   (Although, killing two people and leaving them in the Healing Pool might not have been such a smart move, Sayid!)


Personally, I could watch an entire hour of The Man in Locke toying with these mere mortals. His reaction to Sayid plunging the dagger into his heart was priceless. "Now why did you have to go and do that?" Funny stuff.  The only thing better would have been if he used the David Banner line from The Incredible Hulk: "Don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry." 


Oh, wait. I do have one more beef. I really do not understand why the Evil Trifecta of Locke, Sayid and Claire allowed Kate to live. Not that I really expected her to be killed, but at least it would've made more sense if she would've escaped from their evil clutches. After all, wasn't Claire the one who said she was going to kill Kate for taking away her baby?!  It seemed like that idea just went up in a puff of black smoke.


But then like I said, I'll follow these guys anywhere. I just might bitch about some of it along the way.






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