Wednesday, April 7, 2010

LOST S6: E11- 'Happily Ever After'

Now, little boy LOST, he takes himself so seriously
He brags of his misery, he likes to live dangerously
And when bringing her name up
He speaks of a farewell kiss to me
He's sure got a lotta gall to be so useless and all
Muttering small talk at the wall while I'm in the hall
How can I explain?
Oh, it's so hard to get on
And these visions of Johanna, they kept me up past the dawn.

-Bob Dylan

Desmond loves Penny...
Charlie loves Claire...
Daniel loves Charlotte...

Love makes them remember... love conquers all! Be still my beating heart during the cat scan Penny flashes! Also Penny's giddy laugh and Desmond's joyful strut as they parted ways at the stands. Does this whole show boil down to soul mates?! I can dig it.

I had fun with the opening island scenes of this episode. It felt all Island of Doctor Moreau-ish. At first it seemed like the Jurassic Park compound and I was sure we would hear raptor screeching, then when they turned on the generator too soon and the dude was still touching it, I wanted it to morph him and give him a crab hand or make him like Jeff Goldblum in The Fly or something, but sadly they played it safe with the old 'fried to death' bit.

Des has always been the wild card and could travel back and forth to the different times in his mind. Widmore knows this about him. Is Widmore aware of the alternate timeline and knows that Desmond is the only one who can connect the two realities? Was electromagnetism the only way to connect him to the other world? In the end Des seemed to understand his purpose, or at least felt good about knowing he had a purpose, but Widmore referred to it as a great sacrifice. What does it entail?

The first few Flash-Sideways sequences we saw seemed to be really positive alternatives and giving people closure. Then we had a couple that were sort of ambiguous and made me question that, like Sayid's and Sun/Jin's. This week is the first time I really viewed the Sideways scenario to be sort of trickery or a facade. Is an ominous Someone trying to keep them happy in this fake world and trying to give them what they want to keep them form their higher callings? It made me think of the scene in Labyrinth when Sarah is sort of drugged to forget her purpose so that her time to succeed will run out, but then she sees some familiar things and remembers. Desmond taking Penny's hand was sort of his, "you have no power over me" moment where he knew who he was and what was needed of him. Apparently in both realities. Not sure why he was so cool going with Sayid in the end, but maybe we is just so zen in his purpose and in the euphoria of Penny that he knows he will be able to accomplish his mission no matter what? He wants the flight manifest because he needs to 'show them something.' What is the plan, Des?

The title of this episode was Happily Ever After, which could just be a sweet reference to the love story that is Desmond and Penny, but I think it is meant to be taken a little more, ironically or sarcastically. The Flash-Sideways seems to represent this facade of happily ever after, but it can't last because there is no such thing as that. Not in a cynical way, just in a realistic way. No 'happily ever after' doesn't mean no happy in your life, it just means there are responsibilities and sacrifices to think of. Also, however much you (whoever the you or what is in this situation) try to give people new memories to keep them... distracted, so to speak, you apparently can't actually rid them of their strong emotions. Reality is their true Happily Ever After and they need to get back to it.

The Flash-Sideways is our Losties Matrix Eloise Hawking Widmore, what do you know, woman? "What happened, happened," - nice touch. She was always a bit of a Seer- does she understand the discrepancies in the Flash reality but prefers to stay in it because she gets to keep her son in this version of her life, like the betrayer in the first Matrix who wanted to forget? What is interesting though, is that with this new perspective of the Flashes I am thinking back on what has been taken from these people to make them start seeing the truth. For Des, Charlie and Dan its their ladies, for Sun/Jin it is their child who they may have lost when Sun was shot... but for others they were given something- A son for Jack, a shot at raising Aaron for Claire... they might be harder to convince. Desmond is the new Jack, trying to get everyone 'back to the island' in a way. Though this episode was the most blatant, Des and Charlie and Daniel aren't the only ones remembering, so maybe it won't be hard to convince the others of the truth, it just might be hard to get them to make the right decision in choosing their real life. There were scenes/moments with some of the others, most specifically Jack, where they seemed to have deja vu or were trying to makes sense of a memory.

Charlie was also, of course, the perfect person to help guide Desmond because of their friendship in the other reality which manifested it in the 'Not Penny's Boat' scene. Charlie looked outside of himself- did he remember the island and Desmond when he almost died before and did the hand thing to jog Desmond's memory? Maybe Charlie is just sort of a talisman since he is dead in the other reality. Maybe its because he is dead in the other reality that he is so much closer to his memories than the others. The way Juliet slipped into it just before she died and the way Sun was affected when she passed out.

Nice touches & parallels with the Flash-Sideways: Running into Claire and predicting a boy, Having the scene in Widmore's office where they drink together and Widmore tells him nothing is too good for him when in a previous situation in his office he won't offer him a drink because he isn't good enough, having George be the driver in this episode since he was in the pivotal Constant episode, the nutty guy who died on the freighter, I believe of a brain aneurysm for his lack of a Constant.

Great lines of the night:

Daniel- "What if this wasn't supposed to be our life?" ... "I don't want to set off a nuclear bomb... I think I already did."

Charlie- "Spectacular, consciousness-altering love," nice description, and "then why are you accosting a man in a dressing gown."

Penny- "I shook your hand and then you fainted; I must have quite an affect on you," and the classic, "have we met before...?"


Jana said...

Hayley!! Off topic, but did you know the cast of Glee is on Oprah today??

George Parker Mann said...

This episode was made of awesome, I would watch a series devoted to Desmond if there was one. The first flash (during the car dive) was so powerful, finally we get some definite connection, and then with the brainscan I just wanted to yell NOW GO GET HER! I'm curious about the exactness of Eloise's comment about getting what he most desired. Everyone seems to be confronting their issues that were resolved on the island for better (Jack's daddy issues)and worse (Sayid's penchant for murder). With Desmond his issue in the original timeline was that he valued Widmore's approval more than Penny's. Following some of the other examples he should have ended up with Penny without threatening the reality balance. Maybe that was what was meant by "you're not ready" like it was going to sort itself out, but happened too fast due to the flashsidewaysback. Who knows, I've confused myself. Aaaaanyway, probably not particularly relevant but nice painting of a scale weighing black against white in Widmore's office. Also, I feel like at some point everyone is going to end up at Jack's hospital and figure things out Harry Potter style while they're recovering.

George Parker Mann said...

Mulling it over and I think my confusion about his desires goes into what you were saying about the facade thing. Desmond gets Widmore's approval, for want of Penny. Sun and Jin get one another, but no child. Where it gets tricky is Jack. Jack gets to be a father without being overshadowed by his own, but at what cost? That he doesn't lead and have a fated purpose? That he can't be the chosen candidate? What is he giving up for the prize?

SisterPresidentMann said...

OK, so did you google the word "lost" or are you just really, really, really well-read! Love your quotes!