A review of the past week’s episode of LOST from a frustratedly loyal (and loyally frustrated) fan. This week: Jack wishes he had “Something Nice Back Home,” but we quickly learn again why Jack can’t have nice things: because he’s a d-bag.
LOST, Episode 4.10
Something Nice Back Home
I. Meet The New Jack, Same As The Old Jack
A. Every Jack-centric episode makes it more and more frustrating that he’s the “focal” character of the show. This time around, as we watch his descent into the bearded madness to come, it’s becoming painfully obvious that he’s shown little (if any) personal growth over the history of the show. He’s still trying to be a martyr, still has substance abuse problems, still insecure about his relationship with a woman who has continued to come back to him no matter how retarded his decisions. Now it’s all painfully obvious because Kate is clearly a changed woman! Even more so than in her own focal episode, she’s pretty clearly getting over her whole “born to run” issues and is committing to not just domestic life, but domestic life with JACK of all people. Kate, who once drugged a man who dared to try and marry her, is playing stay-at-home mom and seeming pretty happy about it, yet Jack continues to be his same dumb-ass self and ruin it.
B. Regardless of the domestic bliss they’re struggling to create, I think we can all agree that having a kid raised by Jack and Kate might be the exact opposite of what the psychic had in mind when he told Claire that Aaron can’t be raised by another. If you’re going to unlock the Pandora’s box of evil that Little Orphan Aaron is going to unleash upon the world, you could have at least tried to fake a good, strong family life before he goes batshit. Let’s face it, Sawyer and Kate make a healthier, more down-home couple than Jack and Kate ever have or will. Hell, Sawyer and Hurley would create a healthier environment for the boy, even if his diet and social skills would need some work later in life. By letting this kid become a Jack/Kate joint, they’re more or less dooming him even if he doesn’t become some sort of hellspawn. Worst case: antichrist. Best case: smarmy self-interested douche with an alcohol problem.
C. How many times does Jack have to see his dad before he stops freaking out? They could make arrangements for a weekly coffee brunch with all the visions, yet he still jumps every time like it’s a new development.
D. I’m sure that Juliet, back in her day, was one of the most skilled appendectomy-performers around. And I’m sure that years of training and practice in the area of fertility studies didn’t at all dull her skill level or at least make her the slightest bit rusty. But Jack gets an emergency jungle surgery while laying on a piece of plane wing using instruments that were just sitting around collecting dust for months, yet he doesn’t even have a SCAR a couple years or so later? Seriously, not a mark? Did I mention that Bernard was prominently involved? Is there a reason Juliet never explored plastic surgery?
II. The Beach Rescue, AKA Rescuing Jack’s Poor Appendix From The Rest Of His Stupid Body
A. You can’t help but appreciate Juliet after this episode. She seized control of everything when Jack went down (and did so with an authority that even Kate, perpetual enemy of authority, could dispute) and managed to keep calm and collected and on point through the whole process. That itself is a remarkable achievement when you consider the lack of cool heads during previous medical emergencies (or even during previous day-to-day life). Then she pushes through the miracle surgery with ‘Nards and Kate by her side, manages to NOT let her personal issues interrupt things (another startling defection from the norm) and then she comes back at the end, single-handedly ends the love triangle and does it with her head held high.
B. If someone came to you at the beginning of the season and said “one of the male survivors is going to serve as a nurse during an operation,” doesn’t ‘Nards top the list of candidates? Is there a more appropriate option? Also, with his karma discussion, his morse code knowledge and his medical skills, is he the Most Improved Player in terms of survivor value at this point? Two seasons ago he was trying to spell things with rocks. Now I can think of three, maybe four people whom I’d rather see die before he does.
C. What about Charlotte makes her that appealing to Daniel? All she’s been since they arrived is red hair and a smart mouth, and he’s already taken issue with the latter. He doesn’t seem like the social butterfly type, so is it just that they’ve spent more time together than any other woman he’s known in the past few years? Is it just the accent? If so, what happens when Daniel meets Claire?
III. The Adventures Of Team Sawyer & Huckleberry Miles
A. Everyone Sawyer projects his need for companionship onto ends up leaving him. He buddies up to Karl and they have a Brokeback moment with the whole “cowboy up” exchange, now Karl’s dead. He gets busy with Kate and finally makes some progress, and then she up and leaves him after he was relieved to find out her uterus wouldn’t explode. He finds a heterosexual life-mate in Hurley, and he gets taken away with Ben and Locke, presumably to be driven as crazy as they are. And now he tries to play big brother (or maybe something else) to Claire and the kid, and she up and walks off into the jungle and leaving him with Miles, of all people.
B. On that note, fake apparition daddy or no, if Claire is going to leave her baby in the care of Sawyer and Miles, maybe she deserves to have that kid go with Kate. And that’s saying a lot.
C. Wouldn’t Miles’ spidey-sense be going nuts when crazy undead Christian Shepard/Jacob/whatever just pops up by the campfire to collect his daughter? Even if he’s real enough to convince Miles that he was a real person (since he seemed unphased by the fact that a stranger came out of the blue despite their clear paranoia about other strangers coming out of the blue), shouldn’t their be all sorts of psychic energy whatsits in the air to make his ghost-whispering powers stand at attention?
D. I was all wowed and awed at the menace of the Smoke Monster when Ben unleashed it last week, but now that we saw what it actually did, it’s not quite as impressive. All that secret-chamber, covered-with-soot, smokey-bursting-through-the-village-like-the-pain-train-coming-to-wreck-everyones-shit pomp and circumstance amounted to one dude with a twisted ankle and a jacked-up grill. This is his revenge? “Shoot my daughter execution-style and I’m going to make you have to carry one of your squadmates for the next day or so!” Maybe next time he should pay extra for the Extra Strength Smokey, the one that tore the pilot to shreds or killed our beloved Eko. This half-price, store-brand Smokey bullshit just ain’t gonna cut it.