A Sun and Jin episode with a twist. Nice.
Details and speculation based on tonight’s episode after the jump.
Links and miscellanea:
- Here’s a link for the LOST fan who is also looking for a way to incorporate his love for the NCAA basketball tournament into his or her fandom: LOST Madness. Vincent seems to be the underdog to look out for (bad pun notwithstanding).
- Yet another Elizabeth Mitchell (Juliet) feature. Key quote: “I’ve had a tremendous amount of freedom to create something strange.”
- And here’s a Mitchell interview with TV Guide. The highlight here: Mitchell’s husband’s reaction to Jack kissing Juliet.
- The Baltimore Sun has a piece on LOST’s pop culture references.
- The blogger Eugenia got to interview Malcolm David Kelley (Walt; Creepy Walt; Taller Walt).
- I enjoyed this television advertisement for Perspective, a new treatment for those addicted to LOST. “With Perspective, all is not LOST.” (Remember: “Perspective is not for everyone. Pregnant women and children under 12 are not capable of having perspective.”)
- Here’s an argument for The X-Files being better than LOST. (It’s Canadian, so consider the source.) I’m not very well qualified to argue this one. I didn’t watch The X-Files much, but what I did see felt pretty cheesy and weak (with apologies to X-Files fans everywhere). It just never grabbed me the way that LOST has, and I thought the whole Scully/Mulder Yin/Yang thing was sort of contrived.
- A PR release for a new LOST-based book, LOST Mind Games, “loaded with over two hundred entertaining trivia quizzes, original brain teasers and unique word puzzles.” Sounds kind of entertaining. I’d be more likely to check this out than some sort of episode guide. I think the internet has that territory covered better than a published book ever could (I’m thinking specifically of Lostpedia and Lost-TV, among others.)
- Korea.net has a feature on Yunjin Kim (Sun).
- And finally, It turns out that there was an official podcast this week (even though Cuse and Lindelof said last week there wouldn’t be). Here’s what we learned from the podcast:
- Two of the final five episodes for this season are complete, and the season finale has been begun. The finale will be two hours long, but aired on two separate nights.
- The Tempest was on Kelvin’s map on the Swan Station’s blast door.
- Ben isn’t telling all he knows about Charles Widmore, and we’ll learn more about that this season.
- We’ll also be seeing Harper again at some point.
- Once again: the show, the “Missing Pieces” mobisodes, and the Orchid video are canon; the ARGs, the video game and Bad Twin are not canon (though they try to make the ancillary products consistent with the LOST universe.
- We’ll be seeing more of Christian Shepard in the future. That was, in fact Christian in Jacob’s cabin. (But no more explanation of how this all works.) Christian Shepard has a role in the life of Jack and that of the other survivors on the island.
- We’ll see the Smoke Monster again this season, and we’ll learn more about it.
Observations and speculations:
- Other than a clever narrative device that I didn’t catch onto until very late in, this episode was fairly straight-forward. Combining a Jin flashback with a Sun flashforward was pretty ingenious, I thought. As soon as we understood why Jin obsessed so much about that panda, it was all over, and we knew we’d been had. Note that the style of mobile phone (a clunky model) was a signal to the viewers here just like Jack’s Razr phone was in last season’s finale.
- So now we know five of the Oceanic Six: Jack, Kate, Hurley, Sayid and Sun. Ji Yeon and Aaron don’t count, of course, because they were born after the crash. Next week, by all reports, we find out the sixth, and don’t be surprised if it’s something unconventional. Also, according to the promo, someone dies.
- By the way, I believe this is the first time we’ve seen Regina in the show, though we’ve heard her voice over the sat phone, and she’s been mentioned. Regina was played by Zoe Bell, a stuntwoman of some renown, especially for her work in Tarantino’s last few films, as well as being Lucy Lawless’s stunt double in Xena. Here, we got to see Regina perform her own stunt by jumping off the freighter wrapped in iron chains.
- The book that Regina was (not) reading upside down: Jules Verne’s The Survivors of the Chancellor. Naturally, it’s about a shipwreck and the survival of the castaways.
- Sayid and Desmond were warned twice prior to talking to the freighter’s captain: once by Frank Lapidus and once by (presumably) Michael/Kevin Johnson.
- The episode’s title is taken from the name that Jin suggests for (and Sun later gives to) Sun’s daughter. Anyone know what this name means in Korean?
- If I’m not mistaken (and I might be) the TV Show that is playing in the background when Sun is packing her bag for the hospital is none other than ExposÃƒÂ©, Niki’s old TV show, dubbed for Korean television.
- Among the stuffed animals at the toy store where Jin buys the Panda is a Totoro. That wouldn’t be unusual, probably, for a Korean toy story, but as a big Miyazaki fan, I thought it was a nice touch.
- By the way, the shop keeper mentions that it’s Year of the Dragon, which dates Jin’s flashback roughly to the year 2000, four years before the crash. At that point, Jin had only been married for two months.
- Sun’s distrust of Juliet is certainly understandable. Even though she was ultimately wrong, I sort of had to admire her for it. Also, for the direct way she approached Faraday.
- Worst dialogue in the episode: “Sayid, what’s that?” “It’s a note.” Usually LOST avoids such unnecessary exposition. In fact, it came off as so lame, I halfway suspect it was meant ironically.
- Jin’s English seems to be coming along amazingly well. I wonder if that’s due to the island’s mystical powers. (Kidding, mostly.) Almost more amazingly, Sun’s accent, that was pretty heavy during the first three seasons, has nearly disappeared.
- According to Kate’s directions, Locke’s camp (aka Othersville) is to the northwest about a day and a half’s journey. The show has kept this fairly consistent from the time we first found out about the yellow bungalows last season.
- Here’s the hot topic for debate from tonight’s episode: was Juliet wrong to tell Jin about Sun’s affair? It felt so wrong, yet it turned out so right. Do the ends justify the means? Is revealing a confidence justified in this case?
- Bernard sure is a buzzkill. But his devotion to Rose is his redeeming trait.
- The freighter’s name is Kahana. Not sure I’ve ever noticed that before. Wiki lists several possibilities for “Kahana,” including a Rabbi with the first name of Jacob and geographical location in Hawaii.
- Are we to presume that the mentally deteriorating Regina was the one banging the pipes and annoying Desmond?
- So Lapidus apparently made a run to the island without telling Sayid and Desmond.
- Captain Gault is Australian and not the sentimental type. Is his name an Ayn Rand reference?
- Gault says that some of his crew are suffering from a “heightened case of cabin fever” and he speculates that this is due to being in proximity of the island. This seems to be something different than the illness that took Minkowski and almost claimed Desmond.
- Is the saboteur the same as Ben’s spy (i.e., Michael)? Or someone else? If Michael/Kevin is working for Ben, it makes sense that he would also be trying to disrupt Widmore’s mission.
- The captain is surprisingly forthcoming, as Sayid notes. He confirms that the boat is Charles Widmore’s, and that Widmore is, in fact, directing the mission. He also lets Sayid and Desmond know about the fake Oceanic 815 wreck and the flight recorder. Certainly, Gault has his own agenda, so we need to be wary of his information. Still, it’s refreshing to meet someone who gives it out so freely.
- Gault claims that Widmore wantst to take Ben Linus because (he implies) Ben is behind the fake Oceanic 815 wreck, including the probable murders of the substitute plane crash victims. That’s one of the many reasons, anyway.
- Next week should be interesting. Sayid will be outraged that Michael is doing Ben’s bedding and working against Widmore, yet we already know that Sayid will be in this exact same position in the future. What we don’t know is what turns him in favor of Ben and against Widmore.
- Whose bloody spot is on the wall of Sayid and Desmond’s new cabin? It looks like someone was shot, or perhaps shot themselves.
- So it wasn’t much of a surprise for anyone reading this, I’m sure, that Michael was on the boat. It was a bit surprising to me that he looks like hell, though. Even on the island, he always looked better than that. Where’s Walt? Is Walt the one somehow communicating information to Ben, perhaps through Jacob?
- Michael has taken on the alias of Kevin Johnson. Seems like more of an NBA allusion than literary to me. Next episode’s name, by the way, is “Meet Kevin Johnson,” so I’m assuming we might find out more about how Michael got where he is and what he’s up to.
- According to Jin’s tombstone, he died on September 22, 2004 (the day of the crash) at the age of 29. This makes sense because, according to the official “Oceanic Six” story, everyone but the Six, except for two others who lived only briefly, everyone died in the crash.
- So, I guess Sun invited all of the other Six to see her new baby, but only Hurley showed up. Kate, of course, has legal issues that preclude her from traveling. Jack has emotional issues and probably feels debilitatingly guilty for Jin’s death. Sayid is off being an assassin for Ben. Hurley is pleased that no one else showed up. I wonder why.
This episode rates pretty well. If it wasn’t for the twist in the flashback/flashforward, I might not have enjoyed it so much. Sun and Jin have always shared flashback episodes, and their stories have always intertwined, so this was set up well.
If all indications are correct, next week’s episode should be a killer (no pun intended) and a cliffhanger. I’ll be on spring break with my kids, but my hotel is supposed to have wireless, so I think I’ll try to blog it if I have the energy and can stand watching the episode in real time. Expect my observational skills to suffer greatly without a DVR.