Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Previously on LOST

(Thank God we brought heels for a three hour tour)

Joel Straley

I don’t have a lot of free time. But I still need to know what’s going on on Lost! So, I watched the Pilot and the Finale and made up the rest. Here it goes:

Lost is not a television show about a plane crash on an island. Lost is a show about smoke aliens that study humans on a deserted island, borrowing elements of the mythology of Scientology. But first it’s time for a flashback!

Jack Shephard opens his eyes after a calming nap on an airplane. He discovers his flight, Oceanic 815, has crashed on what would have been - under normal circumstances- a lovely beach on an even lovelier jungle Island. Some people survive, some people die.

The survivors get to know each other through an ironic discussion of what three albums they would have packed had they known they would be stranded on a deserted (or is it?) island. The writers love Irony. Jack would have brought Maroon 5 “Songs about Jane”, Bruce Springsteen “Born in the USA” and a Lisa Loeb album to remind him of his ex-wife. Locke would have brought AC/DC “Highway to Hell”, Rolling Stones “Exile on Main St.” and Mayhem “Pure Fucking Armageddon."

In the third episode, “The Audition …of Death," it is revealed that the whole cast were all on their way from Sydney, Australia to Los Angeles after auditioning for a television show based on a plane crash that leaves the passengers stranded in a modern day Twilight Zone episode for six seasons. The writers really love Irony. This finally explained one the biggest initial questions of the series; how exactly Hurley ended up on an island with a bunch of fit and attractive actor/model types.

John Locke reveals that in his past he had crashed lots of cars, trains and airplanes (did he crash the plane?) trying to get the type of badass facial scar that he conveniently has now. Charlie reveals that his band Drive Shaft is named after a rough translation for the Finnish word for hand-job.

The first two seasons continue on with several Jurassic-Park-without-the-dinosaurs type of action scenes. In an attempt to not lose the audience, the survivors begin running from a glob of smoke that needs fear and anger to survive. From this point on they must all work together and try to maintain a certain level of happiness and cooperation. This works in a similar way to Thetan levels which -when dropped too low- will get you eaten by a mysterious pile of smoke.

One of the first clues to the survivors that they weren’t on a basic deserted island was the discovery of a red button on the side of a tree. At the end of the season one finale “Trees, Buttons and Aliens…Oh My“ Hurley discovers the button and delivers one of the shows most famous lines: “um, dudes, is trees supposed to have buttons?”

Season two primarily revolves around Locke and Jack yelling “I’m not gonna push the button” and “Push the goddamn button” respectively, like a bunch of OCD sufferers. In the season two Finale it is revealed that the button controlled the Alien’s garage door. Did I mention the Island is run by Aliens? Well, it is and they’re from the planet Dharma.

In the episode “Ben-Here,” an alien in the form of a human mentor - Ben, informs the survivors that the smoke is actually the aliens who inhabit the Island. The aliens allow the survivors to leave the island on the condition that they simply split their lives in half. On one line they remain on the Island so the aliens can study and experiment with human interaction and behavioral progress in a series of different obstacles designed to test their mental, physical and emotional endurance. On a new timeline they are allowed to experience what it would be like had the plane never crashed.

Ironically, they must live out their lives in close contact with each other in a manner that mimics soap operas. If you have ever looked across the aisle of your airplane and thought “I wonder if that lady will deliver my baby someday” then these aliens created quite the plan for you. As the survivors continue on in their lives as doctors, cops, rock-stars and female doctors they have constant moments of déjà vu where they can feel their lives as they are mirrored on the Island.

In the episode “Jacobs Later” the survivors learn that “Jacob” is the name of the human that leads all the rest. It is named after the first human resident of the Island; a young boy from Fiji who had escaped in a boat during the Great Measles Outbreak of 1875. The boy was raised by the smoke aliens and received eternal life through whoever was next to “lead” the Island. Notice that “Lead the Island” sounds a lot like “Leave the Island” because, goddamn, did these writers love Irony.

In Season 4, Episode 14 “Take Me to Your Leader” Desmond is chosen as the first leader but accomplishes very little as a lame duck Jacob. John Locke uses force to get the Aliens to retract their decision and make him the new leader. His hunger for order and power gets the best of him. Sickness, injury and death plague the Islanders more than ever before.

A coup is staged by Jack as he begins influencing people to join him in a fair Utopian society and to no longer live under Locke’s fascism. In Season 6, Episode 11 “For God and Island“ Jack, representing good, and John, representing evil- in an analogy for the grey area within morality- come head to head with Jack’s line “Stop playing God!” to which Locke replies “I AM God!”. Jack becomes the new Jacob and performs the duty as a young JFK/Obama type of leader.

In Season 5, episode 6 “Lost and Found…How’d It Take This Long To Name an Episode That?“ a small rescue airliner crashes on to the island. I’m telling you, these writers can’t get enough irony!

After ransacking the Aliens' garage, the survivors find enough tools to fix the small rescue airliner. This allows some of the survivors to leave the Island in the series finale entitled “Just like the M*A*S*H Finale minus the Korean War”.

As the plane leaves the Island it alludes to the first few episodes - in that it feels just like Jurassic Park. The survivors stare out at the green hills of the Island with a look of “Holy Shit! We could’ve died but didn’t” on their faces.

In Los Angeles, on the crash-never-happened timeline, Hawkeye…I mean, Hurley has a vested interest in keeping the group together. Like the nerd who is moderately liked by popular kids, Hurley goes as far as shooting his friends with tranquilizer darts in order to get them to remain friends and go to a Drive Shaft show. Although most of the survivors think the music of Drive Shaft sucks, they all slowly reunite.

As a reward for participating in the experiment all of the survivors are placed together in a giant church for an eternity. The Aliens chose a church after witnessing through a series of vague and pointless rituals just how important religion is to humans. Oh, did I also mention that they were all dead and in purgatory? Yeah, that seems to be what’s going on.

Back on Smoke Alien Island, Jack finally kills Locke and then goes into the light cave in an attempt to leave the Island. The light cave has a deep center that is used for time travel, which is how the Smoke Aliens came to earth in the beginning. Jack dies in the woods after getting his ass kicked for going into the light cave and fucking with the home of the Smoke Aliens. Jack dies after watching the small rescue plane leave the Island. It is then assumed that the dog eats the corpse since it is now the freshest meat on the Island.

(Oh yeah he's totally gonna eat him)



Binaco said...

Amazing. I watched all 6 seasons, and you my friend... spot on.

Joelisbored said...

BINACO, BACK FROM THE DEAD!! Thanks for reading! I really appreciate it. Are you still out in L.A.? How have things been?