Lost Round Table: “The Package”

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Welcome back! Sorry to interrupt the April Foolery, but Lost is Serious Business…This week we officially kick off the last half of the final season with bloggers Rajan Khanna, Theresa DeLucci and Bridget McGovern. Join us as we delve deep into “The Package,” but be advised: “The Package” may contain spoilers and at least one exceedingly stubborn tomato. Also: sexy results.

Raj: First things first—Desmond! Finally. I’ve missed you, Desmond. It seems the people who guessed that he was in the locked room were right. Widmore seems back to being an interminable dick, but does he have the island’s best interests in mind? He wants to prevent Smocke from leaving, after all. Everyone, regardless of their overall motive, seems to have their own agenda. It’s no wonder that Sun flipped out—I, for one, understand her.

And then there’s the part where I worry some more. Because last night’s episode gave us very little in terms of the island mythos to chew on. We did learn a bit more about the candidates, if Smocke is to be believed. Kate apparently isn’t one any longer. But he needs those who are to leave the island if he wants to escape, too. Which echoes the previous idea that all of the Oceanic Six needed to come back for them to return. A message carried by the real Locke. So it seems that the mere presence of the candidates keeps Smocke on the island. Is that all Jacob was, then? The one dude who agreed to stick around for centuries to make sure Smocke didn’t leave?

The other thing I found interesting was what Widmore said (though again, we have to consider the veracity of the source). He said that if Smocke escaped the island, Sun, Ji Yeon, and Penny would cease to be. Not die, but cease to be. Could this be related to Earth-2? Of course we know Sun is in that universe, but Ji Yeon…well, that’s too depressing to consider. But is Penny alive in that universe? One would hope so that she and Desmond could be together. Ah, Desmond…

Speaking of Earth-2, I really liked the way that the Sayid’s story intertwined with Jin’s. So Jin and Sun are much happier in that timeline, if more secretive. But apparently for good reason. I was hoping that Sun would show up with the money from the bank and they’d run away and be together. But apparently that’s not to be. I wonder if their happy ending will be in Earth-1, so their Earth-2 fate is less sunny?

Oh, and what is up with the pockets of electromagnetic energy? We know they’re important, but what does Widmore plan to do? I guess we’ll have to wait. And nice callback to the subliminal room we saw before.

In the last round table I meant to include a comment to the effect that even though the word “Ab” was in the episode title, there was no one shirtless in the episode. Of course that was rectified this week. A coincidence that an episode with some of the most skin we’ve seen is called “The Package”?

Theresa: Can we refer to the sideways reality as The Universe Where Mikhail Has Two Eyes, please?

I did not like this episode. It had good moments, like Miles’ bacon grease burn on Hurley, Jack bringing Sun one stubborn tomato, and Jin seeing the picture of his daughter. But Sun forgetting how to speak English after getting bumped on the head? That was way over the soap opera line for me. That was completely silly. And why take away Sun’s voice now? And enough with the tease of keeping Jin and Sun apart. Two seasons and it’s like now they’re just making up ways to keep them apart until the finale. I’m quite sure I’ll still cry, but now I’m getting annoyed.

At least we got one reunion. I was so glad to see Desmond appear at the end of the episode, but, damn, I kind of wanted him to go on living happily ever after with Penny and their son. Now he’s back in danger on the Island. Nothing bad better happen to him or I will blow up my television. Raj, I like your point about everyone “ceasing to be” (like a parrot?) not being the same as dying. I think Smocke can make Earth-2 real. There has to be a choice involved. So much of this show is about free will vs. destiny.

Does anyone believe Widmore is a good guy? He may be against the MIB, but I don’t think he’s with Jacob either. Anyone who would threaten the romantic bliss of Desmond and Penny is automatically a bad person.

3 things I learned in tonight’s episode:
1) Sun has BOOBS. (Seriously, Lost? That was tacky as hell. I demand pointlessly shirtless Sawyer in compensation for that camera shot. Actually, Sawyer’s gotten a little paunchy. I demand more shirtless Jin. )
2) Some show called V has returned. Did you hear about that? Were you counting down the minutes until V returns? Was anyone? By choice, I mean.
3) Sayid makes a great buoy. I love Naveen Andrews, but even when he is playing at no emotion (neat plot point,) he looks more like he’s playing… well, a bit slow, to be honest.

Bridget: I should probably admit straight away that Sun and Jin are the major characters that I care least about. They’re very sweet, but in the grand scheme of things, not very intriguing, and I really didn’t need another episode rehashing their star-crossed lovin’ in both available realities. It felt like an ill-advised mash-up of a Nicholas Sparks novel and a Tarantino film, at points. And then Sun got whacked on the head and lost the ability to speak English…really, Lost?! Really???

I love the soap opera-esque aspects of Lost as much as anyone, but after last week’s flirtation with telenovela territory, I’m wondering if the writers need to be reminded that this is not an Agnes Nixon joint. I mean, even Sun’s big seduction scene played out like a sexified version of Mr. Rogers’ patented taking-off-his-cardigan routine…Having said that, I agree with Raj that it’s great to have Desmond back (and like Theresa, I loved soulless Sayid in this episode, especially when he went all Apocalypse Now at the end).

Furthermore, I’m growing more and more intrigued by what rules apply to the Man in Black. What’s the deal with the pylons, for example? And why can he leave the main island in Locke-form, but not as smoke? Also, who killed the Ajira passengers? Are we supposed to assume it was Widmore’s people?

On that front, I have to say that I am not feeling Sheila Kelley as Zoe, the geophysicist-not-a-mercenary. I was a little too young for L.A. Law, so I mainly know her as a fervent proponent of using stripper poles as exercise equipment. Put that together with the fact that her glasses force me to refer to her as “the Sarah Palin of Hydra Island,” and it all adds up to me wondering why no one has been killed with a flaming arrow yet this season. I believe I have a candidate of my own.

All in all, “The Package” had its moments (Sawyer and Lapidus got at least one great, eye-rolling line apiece, and I still kinda like Keamy’s hammy/creepy Walken impression, although paraphrasing Woody Allen’s “the heart wants what it wants” line was a weird move), but it ultimately felt anticlimactic. A lot of helpful breadcrumbs were dropped along the way, however (and one stubborn tomato/awkward metaphor), so hopefully we’ll pick up momentum again next week…and if we do have to deal with another love story, let’s hope it’s Desmond and Penny, this time. Those two crazy kids know how to keep things interesting…

Agree? Disagree? Something to add? Please chime in below, after the following Lost-related link-fest:

• The official rosters of Team Jacob and Team Smokey, via the wonderful Fuckyeahlost.com

• The Lost credits get a classic, Saul Bass-style makeover

• Oprah.com takes a long, lingering look at Sawyer’s bookshelf. Back off, Oprah.

• The Singing Journal of Daniel Faraday fills you in on everything you need to know about the show

• Lost bobbleheads? Sure, why not…

• Bonus: When Lost met Buffy (because there’s always room for Nerf Herder).

Theresa DeLucci is a graduate of the 2008 Clarion West Writers Workshop. Her fiction has appeared in Chizine. She’s eagerly awaiting the return of True Blood. Well not so much the whole show, but at least Alexander Skarsgård in a tank top

Rajan Khanna is a graduate of the 2008 Clarion West Writers Workshop and his fiction has appeared in Shimmer magazine. He lives in Brooklyn with his two cats, Chloe and Muppet.

Bridget McGovern is a lit nerd, a film geek, and a complete pop culture junkie. She enjoys David Bowie, roller coasters, and that sexy Fred Rogers more than anyone probably should.


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