Monday, May 4, 2009
TBG TV: Lost - "The Variable"
Even though both of this episode's Faraday-related twists were a bit telegraphed, it was another knockout performance by Jeremy Davies. That final scene – with Faraday's 1977 mother standing over him and Faraday in disbelief over what she'd eventually do – was terrific television.
"Your son is Benjamin Linus?" "Good Lord, no!"
OK, what am I missing here? Earlier in the season, I thought Faraday had established that whatever has happened or is happening or will happen cannot be changed. For example, when Jack refused to help a gravely wounded Boy Ben, we all knew he was destined to survive, somehow. Now, Faraday's convinced he CAN make changes to the timeline? Unless I'm grossly misinterpreting this huge plot point, this seems like a critique that should be getting discussed more.
So…Faraday has "no time" to explain why he's searching for "the hostiles" when everyone is sitting around Sawyer's living room. But, out in the jungle – deep within the hostiles' territory – Jack, Kate and Faraday are kicked back, passing around the canteen and pausing for exposition. Look, I'm glad we're getting answers to questions in the same episode and all, but c'mon writers…tighten it up a little.
I guess I understand why Sawyer's reign of leadership was written to be such a cataclysmic failure. Now, Jack is re-established as the alpha male and tasked with carrying out Faraday's ill-fated scheme. Still, it's disappointing that everyone abandoned Sawyer. His "you were right" scene with Juliet was downright heartbreaking for a character that – after four seasons – I actually had come around on.
Verdict: Hmm…you'd think I didn't like this episode, but it was arguably the best of what's been a superlative season, so far. There were a lot of little things (Faraday's awkward gun handling; Miles refusing to confirm Faraday's "from the future" claim; Sawyer still trying to lie ("That sound came from outside") to Radzinsky and the Dharma team even though his charade had completely crumbled) that made me appreciate the show's underutilized knack for nuanced storytelling.