LOST Notes, Season 4, Episode 12: There’s No Place Like Home

A review of the past week’s episode of LOST from a frustratedly loyal (and loyally frustrated) fan. This week: The greenhouse effect as everyone storms towards The Orchid on “There’s No Place Like Home.”

LOST, Season 4, Episode 12
There’s No Place Like Home

I. Leavin’ On A Jet Plane, Don’t Know When I’ll Go Nuts And Demand To Go Back Again

A.  It would be harsh to classify Jack’s schemes as harebrained (and I’m no stranger to being harsh about what Jack does, doesn’t do, thinks, doesn’t think, is, isn’t, etc.), but when you’re strapped to a cargo seat in a Coast Guard plane to Hawaii to help propagate a worldwide conspiracy after spending nearly four months trying to get off the same Island with varying degrees of failure only to finally be one of six out of 40-something who make the trip, I think that’s the time when you need to say “Jack doesn’t speak for me anymore.”  You’ve got Sayid, you’ve got the gradually maturing Kate, you’ve even got ruthless corporate bitch Sun (who we’ll get to later).  You’re not in the jungle playing Survivorman and at risk of dying any time some weird insect bites you.  You don’t need to bow before the doctor anymore.

B.  This hasn’t come up in a while, but I believe the Notes have previously covered how Sun just might be the most selfish person on the show.  That was on full display for this episode, a couple of times over.  First, if we’re operating under the assumption that she’s getting off the Island within hours of the realization that she’ll be separated from her husband for eternity – either because he’s really dead or because he has to stay behind for whatever reason, whereas she’s leaving with no intention or promise of return.  That being said, she seems pretty cool with the concept, with her mourning limited to one awkward pause during the media session and then the usurping of her dad’s company.  Then you stop to think that she’s avenging a husband that she was about 30 seconds from leaving pre-crash for reasons that have everything to do with the ridiculous sacrifices he made just to be with her silver-spoon-fed ass.  And that she only got back with him after having to spend over three more months with him in the most extreme conditions, and even then they were no more physical than Boone and Shannon until Jin grew his hair out and saved everyone on the Island.  Presumably, this also happened when Sun got tired of not getting any action, and Michael was gone, so her husband became the top candidate by default.  With all that in mind, Sun didn’t buy her dad’s company because she decided he was indirectly responsible for Jin’s demise.  She bought that company because she had a lot of money and didn’t want to be told what to do.
C.  Nice job spending months rebuilding the old junker as a memorial to your son and never managing to reset the odometer, Cheech.  Then again, if you did it as a creative way to shock your son into an exercise plan, maybe you’re not as stupid as your haircut indicates.
D.  There’s no way that woman and Christian produced Claire.  For starters, neither of them are particularly good-looking enough to begat someone that looks like her.  Beyond that, mom spent time in the hospital and dad died after drinking so much that his heart stopped.  Neither of those sound like the parents of a woman who can withstand a rocket blast.  Granted, Christian’s current undead nature might have something to do with her amazing dexterity.  If those genes also means Jack can’t die, then my hope for a satisfying end to this series is seriously diminished. 

II. The Beach, The Boat & The Ben

A.  Some other neurotic, micro-managing borderline genius stranded on an island miles away from the kind of laboratory situation in which he typically seems to live might have completely abandoned all faith in a classy appearance and taken off his tie by now.  Not Daniel, though, and the kind of respect his neckwear commands in that sweat-soaked button-down combination is clearly working wonders with Charlotte.  It used to be that she regarded him with the same wide-eyed stare of confused disgust that she looked at everything.  Now, she gives him the same wide-eyed state and she’s still quite obviously confused about everything going on around her, but the veiled disgust is mostly gone. 

B.  Apparently I underestimated the impact of Jack’s appendix and the surgery on everything that happens on the beach.  Granted, he’s still doing the same martyr-against-all-odds-even-when-I-fail act.  But now, all of a sudden, he’s fine with Kate accompanying him on an important jungle mission, which almost never happened BEFORE his transparent love for her was laid out on the table for all to see, and would seem even less likely now.  Then on top of that, Juliet is completely cool with playing the role of “Old Kate” and watching Jack stomp off into the brush despite her objections.  Last season, she was telling any story she could to get down in the middle of the action, but ever since her Tempest tangle with Charlotte, she’s been playing house mom.  Especially given how clearly she asserted her control of the situation after the surgery, it’s disappointing to know that Bernard, of all people, is a more important character down this recent stretch.

C.  I’d like to see the organizational chart that explains how the boat’s chain of command works.  Sure, the not-so-mysterious-once-you-meet-him captain is in charge until Keamy stops shooting at clay pigeons and starts shouting at everyone.  Now the former is dead and the latter is off making more people dead, so apparently the janitor and the crazy guy from the infirmary are calling the shots?  Maybe this is why it’s so easy to sabotage the engines, break the communications equipment or set a massive bomb up anywhere on the ship without many repercussions. 

D.  Aaron’s an awfully tolerant kid given the conditions in which he’s spent his first months of life.  He doesn’t seem to mind being held by basically anyone, from Locke to Sawyer to Sun to the undead Christian.  Given how many petty problems other folks on the Island keep having with each other, it’s telling that the youngest among them is the one who can get along with pretty much everyone.  I guess his mother spent most of her time with Chuckles, so maybe it’s just a family thing. 

E.  You have to respect Ben’s commitment to secrecy even in the face of impending doom.  Is it absolutely necessary that Hurley and Locke not know who’s on the other end of that mirror or what they said?  Probably not, but he’s keeping it from them anyway because he’s Ben and they’re not.  Speaking of which, Locke is not making a good effort towards assuming the throne when he’s still playing the dumbfounded second banana to Ben’s “I have a plan so shut up and do as I say” act.  It wasn’t too long ago that John was using that same ethereal sage act on everybody else, but he continues to be caught off guard every time there’s the slightest chance that Ben might know more than he does.  You’re the rightful heir but you still need to be reminded that Ben is Ben every time he tries to put things into motion.  How many times do you have to get the “Bitch, it’s ME!” look from the man before you stop questioning him? 

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