May 2010 Archives

Totally Lost

Let the analysis commence!  Me, I've got a lot of questions and very few answers.  I was really digging the finale right up to the moment where they started talking about leaving, and Jack's father appeared.  I liked it better when the sideways universe was everyone's second chance.

Was everyone dead before they ever got on the plane?  Were the earliest theories true, and the island purgatory?  Or was the island real, and the flash sideways purgatory?  Why were some people-- Michael, Walt, Charlotte, Daniel, Miles, Frank, among others-- missing from the church?

If the island is purgatory and everyone on it was dead from the moment the show began, what's the deal with Jacob and the Man in Black?  Why did the lives of the Losties intersect before they got to the island / died?

If the sideways was purgatory, then what was all that business with the nuclear bomb?  It didn't create a parallel universe. Aside from jolting everyone back to the present it didn't really do anything, despite what Juliet said as she died.  That's a whole lot of running around to accomplish nothing. 

Why were the Others so interested in Walt?  Why did they terrorize the Losties in the first place?  Why did the psychic have such dire predictions about Aaron, who never appeared to be significant?

I hope someone's able to put together a Unified Field Theory for Lost, because right now it's feeling a lot like the writers crammed into a room for a weekend, got really excited about an idea, and piled more ideas on top of it without regard for all the contradictions they were creating.

Comments (8) | last by Michael Adcock, May 28, 2:24 PM

Dear Mr. Abrams,

I love your work.  Really, I do.  Fringe has been far more entertaining and sensible than The X-Files.  I love that at its core, Fringe is really about the lengths to which a father will go out of love for his son.

But please, it's time to retire the doppelganger from your playbook.  You've gone to that well just a few times too often.  It was bad enough when you did it with Charlie, but the switcheroo in the season finale of Fringe was a doppel too far.  Worse, it was blatantly telegraphed.  The moment Olivia dyed her hair, there was no way the episode could end other than the wrong Olivia going home with Walter and Peter.

Worst of all, to make it work, you had to make the other characters into idiots.  Are we honestly expected to believe, after their experience with Charlie's double, that our heroes never put even the simplest safeguards, such as a passphrase, into place?  And when Olivia shows up with a different hair color, none of them think that maybe they should make sure she's the right Olivia?

Tell you what, I'll make you a deal.  I'll cut you a free pass on this one if you give us Charlie back.  He's feeling obsolete?  Great.  Bring him to our universe and have him join our side.  Not as good as having Olivia's original trusted confidante back, but still a welcome addition to the ensemble.

But no more mistaken identity, trading places plotlines, okay?

Comments (4) | last by Dave, May 23, 5:46 PM

He wants to be seen as the best player ever to play the game, yet he doesn't care about the social aspect.  He doesn't think it's important.  Jeff had it right-- Russell's not playing Survivor, he's playing some other game.  Unfortunately, he's playing it while he's a contestant on Survivor.

With her final vote, Candice confirmed that she had no business being on this season.  Taking her speech at face value, she based her decision not on gameplay but on personality and values.  She has every right to vote however she wants, just as I have every right to not respect her for it.  It's Heroes vs. Villains.  Respect the game you're playing.  Though, as NPR columnist Linda Holmes wrote, people just don't hand over a million dollars to someone they dislike.

Even so, I'm very surprised at the way the final vote went.  Parvati played, by far, the strongest game of the three finalists.  She made brilliant moves, she kicked butt in challenges, and she never lost her cool.  Yet she only got three votes.  Parvati was robbed.  Sandra played a fine game, but Parvati played a great one.  Unfortunately, her game was indelibly linked to Russell's, and she suffered toxic repulsion by association.

The audience got their vote wrong, too.  JT's play was far from the stupidest Survivor move of all time.  It turned out to be one of the worst, but as Jeff pointed out had things really been as they seemed on the Villains tribe and Russell was the last man standing against an all-women alliance, it would have been abso-freaking brilliant.  No, by far the dumbest move was Colby's season two decision to take Tina to the end instead of Keith.  The other players got eliminated as a result of their moves, but they might have gotten knocked out anyway.  Colby's move directly cost him nine hundred thousand dollars.

And hey, how about that final immunity challenge?  For the first time in a long while, the game finished with a challenge that presented an absolutely level playing field.  It was anyone's game, and those final few seconds as three players blindly groped for the necklace mere inches apart from each other was quite possibly the most dramatic conclusion to any challenge in the history of the game.  A great conclusion to a spectacular season.

Comments (6) | last by Chris M. Dickson, May 20, 4:11 AM

Not Much to Say

Sorry I haven't been posting about non-Survivor topics, but I've spent most of the last two weeks at the office and really, who wants to hear about that?

Last night's episode had no real surprises.  Colby continues to be a complete zero.  It's incredibly hard to believe, even accounting for the passage of time, that this is the same man we saw in season 2.  He's got no game.  At anything.  And he was an utter douche, transfering all his frustrations at his season of inefficacy onto his brother in the span of one challenge.  I think it's safe to say that with this season, we've seen the last of Colby on Survivor.

The flaw in my analysis from last week was in expecting Sandra and Parvati to let their emotions rule their actions and vote Russell out.  It's now clear there's no chance of that happening.  Everyone believes that Russell can't win, that he's so disliked by everyone (for the second season in a row!) that nobody on the jury will vote for him, making him the perfect person to take with you to the finals.  Nobody wants to vote him out.

Finals on Sunday. Parvati has won (or diplomatically stepped down from) every single endurance challenge this season.  The vast majority of final challenges are endurance-based (in fact, since they're revisiting classic challenges this season, I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the hand-on-the-stump challenge from season 1).  I wouldn't want to go up against Parvati in an endurance challenge, and if she makes it to the finals, she wins. Will the other Villains be smart enough to vote Parvati out at the next tribal council if she doesn't win immunity?  Or will they just hand her another million dollars?

Comment (1) | last by Scott Blomquist, May 19, 8:41 PM

Karma Chameleon

Love the double-elimination Survivor episodes, especially when they're relatively late in an unstable game and it's not just a rote majority vs. minority double whammy.  Spoilers and lots of discussion after the jump.

Comment (1) | last by Doug Orleans, May 7, 5:57 AM

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