Thursday, April 9, 2009

Lost Episode 12, "Dead is Dead"

Every Wednesday night at 8pm CST, my dog decides it's play time. I don't if the "previously on Lost" voiceover is a trigger for him, but I usually spend the first 15 minutes of each episode trying to get him to calm down. This is making it more and more difficult to do a proper recap. So, I am going to change things up a bit and just hit the highs and lows of the episode today.

I had high expectations for this episode. Way high. Too high. A Ben episode involving the temple and Smokey? How could it fail? Ah, but fail it did. I don't think there has ever been a more cheesy episode of Lost.

We had old actors dressed up to look like younger versions of themselves. Sorry, Lost Costumers, a wig does not hide a 50 year old man's wrinkles. We had horrible smoke monster CGI. We had an overacting, unconvincing Alex. We had a poorly acted dialogue exchange between Captain Frank and Sun. We had a horror movie fake out with Locke coming out of the jungle instead of Smokey. And we have to now deal with a whole, smaller island of castaways who could actually be Others. W. T. F?

This episode involved Ben and his quest to be judged for allowing his stolen daughter Alex get killed at the hands of Widmore's men. We were shown how a younger Ben showed up with an even younger Ethan to Danielle sorry little camp with instructions to kill her, but when he saw baby Alex, he couldn't kill her, so he just took Alex instead. Why? I don't know. I guess Ben has a soft spot for kids. Maybe because his childhood was so fucked up. When he brought the baby Alex back to the Others/Hostiles camp, a "young" Widmore demanded Ben kill Alex. Why? I don't know. Ben refused and decided to "adopt" her. We were shown a loving scene of a toupee wearing Ben pushing a toddler Alex on a swing. How sweet. Ben was a good dad at one time.

Somewhere along the line, everyone found out that Widmore had been frequently leaving the island and had a double life off island where he even fathered a child with a non-Other. This exchange went off like the writers saying: Here, Viewers, now you have your answer about Penny. She and Faraday are not siblings. So shut up. You were wrong. Widmore was banished from the island for his misbehavings and taken away on the submarine in handcuffs. Ben was declared the new leader (I assume).

In "present" time, Ben and Locke headed to the larger island for Ben's judgment day. But not before shooting that Caesar guy, who was going through somewhat of a power trip, in front of all the other new castaways. Oh, and Ben kind of apologized for killing John and told him that he had to because Locke had to die, but Ben needed information first and couldn't let John kill himself.

They get to the old Dharma houses and see a light on in Ben's old house. Ben goes inside and it's just Sun and Frank hanging out. They were told by Christian to wait there for Locke who will help them get to the past to find Jin. They are confused because they are pretty sure Locke is dead. Ben tells them to look outside and there Locke stands. It's like they're seeing a ghost!

They show Ben and Locke the old photograph of the rest of their friends hanging out in 1977. Considering a dead man is walking around in front of them, this no longer seems so far fetched. Frank says he is leaving this freakshow and heads back to the small island where he has a run in with HitwomanChick who asks him "what lies in the shadow behind the statue?" or some crap like that. Frank looks at her like she's a freak and she hits him with the barrel of her gun. So, I guess these guys are in on it, too. Great.

Sun stays behind because she "must find Jin." Locke says he can help but first Ben has some business to attend to. Ben goes into his secret closet and opens up the secret door to which there is another bigger secret door covered in hieroglyphics. He opens that one which leads to an underground passage. This is where he summons Smokey. How? By pulling the drain in the Dharma sewage system. No shit. I am not lying.

He goes outside to wait. Sun is out there hanging out. They hear noise coming from the woods. Everyone is totally spooked. Except, Smokey has a very distinct sound, and that's not it. And guess what, it's not Smokey. It's Locke. He was hanging out in the jungle for whatever reason. But, maybe, just maybe, it is Smokey. Maybe Smokey is Locke. Because maybe that's what Smokey does. Maybe it becomes the dead people. It has done it before. Ben also told Sun that "what's dead is dead" (hey! That's the episode title!) and that he has never seen anyone come back to life before. So maybe John Locke is really dead, and Smokey just inhabit their bodies and works as sort of a puppet master. Maybe Locke doesn't even know that's what has happened. He kind of has the creepy Christian Shepard thing going, who also seems oblivious to the fact that he is dead.

Locke tells Ben that they should go find Smokey instead of waiting around. So Locke, Ben, and Sun (which is such a weird combination - really, what is she doing with these two awesome characters? She is sucking the life out of this whole thing) head to the temple to find Smokey. Apparently the temple we keep seeing is really just a wall that surrounds the temple so that other people (not the Others) can't see it. Locke says they are not going to go through the temple, they are going to go under it and points to the hole that Smokey took off that one guy's arm in.

They crawl in and Sun stays behind. I'm sure this all just becoming a bit much for her, though I don't understand why she didn't just stay back at the cabin. While walking, Ben falls through the floor. Locke goes to get some rope to free him, but Ben wanders off. He comes to an empty room with hieroglyphics everywhere. On one wall is an image of Smokey and some dude with rabbit ears. There is, what looks like, a vent below. Then, out seeps Smokey and surrounds Ben in some cheap CGI. Ben looks as confused as I do. Ben relives his life with Alex, even sees her shot again, then Smokey retreats. Then Alex appears and Ben starts crying and apologizing and she attacks him and tells him not to try to kill John Locke and to listen to everything he says and then she's gone and that's it and that somehow is supposed to explain Smokey? Everyone I've talked to since last night's episode keeps jumping up and down saying they explained Smokey. Maybe I'm and idiot, but I don't get it. We know that Smokey judges people. We saw that with Ecko. So now we know that it has something to do with Egypt? That's really all I got. Oh, and it lives in a vent in the temple. Okay. And it can manifest itself as dead people. So what IS it?

Anyway, Locke finds a rope and hoists Ben up and Ben is all happy because Smokey let him live. So, I guess that means Ben is a good person?

So, that's it. That's all that happened.

Oh, yes, one more thing:

We are shown Ben off island when he was rounding up the O6. He is at the pier talking on the phone with Widmore telling him he is going to kill his daughter. We then see Penny on a boat and now I am really mad. I swear, swear, that we were given a timeframe for how long Desmond had to get to LA. I believe it was 2 days. There is no way in hell they sailed from London to LA in 2 DAYS! Are we really supposed to believe this? I am so ready to throw something at the tv and never watch this show again if that's the case. Ben approaches the boat and Desmond is seen unloading groceries from a car. He yells at Ben and Ben shoots him! Ben walks up to Penny with gun drawn, Penny starts to plead for her life, then little Charlie wanders up calling for his mom. Penny asks Ben not to hurt Charlie and Ben looks like he is about to second guess himself - just like with Danielle and Alex! But then, Desmond shows up and knocks him down and kicks the crap out of him just like I predicted.

So, Ben never got to kill Penny, but Desmond and Penny have a magic I'm torn on how I feel about that whole situation.

All in all, it was a weak episode. It felt rushed and pieced together. I hate to say it, but Kate's episode was far superior.

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