'Lost' - 'Sundown' Recap
by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 3rd 2010 2:20AM
(S06E06) In a season where all the answers are supposedly being given, I actually appreciate that I still have no idea what's coming next on 'Lost.' With twelve episodes left to go, it's certainly not necessary for me to be spoon fed all the answers right now. If they did that, why would we keep watching it for the next two-and-a-half months?
This week, in the alpha-verse we were treated to the promised confrontation at the temple. It certainly didn't go down the way I expected, but it still blew my mind. Claire and Kate wound up facing off, with all the expected tension, and all hell broke loose in the temple. As I said, from the closing seconds of 'Sundown,' I can't even speculate what's going to happen next, and I love that.
Sayid was the focus of the episode, both on the island and in the rewritten beta-verse reality. In both of them he seems to be fighting a darkness within himself. It was certainly the darkest flash-sideways we've seen yet.
I'm still up in the air, as are many of you based on your comments, as to which side of the good/evil equation MiB-Locke is on, but he's certainly willing to go on a smokey killing rampage without any remorse about it. No matter what you think about the Others, they're just people. Many of them are people just like us, like Dogen, who were recruited to the island by Jacob for whatever reasons.
What we know for sure now is that Dogen wasn't lying to Jack about the darkness growing in Sayid, nor that it would ultimately supplant the Sayid we knew and loved, as that's exactly what happened by the ending of this episode. Speaking of which, how great were the expressions on Kate's face in those closing moments. Evangeline Lilly is really coming into her own this season with subdued and expressive performances.
I wonder why it was that Dogen simply being alive was enough to keep Smokey from being able to invade the temple. As soon as Sayid took care of that, it was "Other" buffet for ye olde smoke monster. Dogen was really gambling by sending Sayid out to meet MiB-Locke in the first place. He already knew that Sayid was turning, and he knows MiB-Locke for what he is. Did he really believe MiB-Locke would kill Sayid upon seeing him, or did he truly not anticipate MiB-Locke recruiting Sayid to his own cause?
MiB-Locke's other loyal recruit is Claire. At this point, I'm not sure if Claire has been consumed by darkness in the way Sayid has. She seems almost more like she's just been emotionally manipulated by the man in black for years. We saw her hanging around him in his Christian Shephard guise, so he's been inside her mind since then. Plus, we've never seen her actually die, and apparently that needs to happen for this darkness to get in.
I do think it's interesting that the Man in Black was doing his dirty work under the guise of Christian Shephard, which brings with it images of a missionary presenting a specific doctrine and system of beliefs upon people who have their own beliefs, and is now doing so under the name John Locke, a philosopher who believed more in religious tolerance and acceptance. Is it symbolic of the freedom the Man in Black now feels with Jacob gone?
Under Jacob, as translated through Ben, the Others seemed to have pretty strict expectations on what they were supposed to be doing. And one of the biggest parts of that was that they were never allowed to leave the island. Right off the bat, MiB-Locke is offering them freedom from the island. Is it the same kind of religious fear that controls some people that's keeping the Others from accepting MiB-Locke as perhaps their savior from what turned out to be an oppressive regime?
Looking at it that way, Jacob looks like a manipulative and controlling oppressor, and the Man in Black is the savior of the Others, and anyone else who had the misfortune of winding up on the island. But why is the savior, then, so willing to slaughter the people who won't follow him? That certainly doesn't support Locke's theories of tolerance, though it could perhaps agree with his political beliefs about protecting one's own life and liberty.
Of course, none of this means anything right now, because we have no idea what the Man in Black is intending to do with this army of followers, the first of which was Sawyer. But where the hell has Sawyer been since their little meeting in the cave? Is he just hanging out down at the beach, waiting for MiB-Locke to come back with all his new recruits? So many questions, so many sides right now.
I'm still on Team Hugo.
The connections in the beta-verse may start to flow into one another a bit more, as we got more than a casual passing in the closing scenes of this week's flash-sideways. While beta-Sayid seems to be as in love with Nadia as alpha-Sayid ever was, in this reality he apparently encouraged her to settle down with his brother Omar. She did so, but in a cold and callous way. I say that because she didn't even seem to care that Omar's life was in danger due to a loan he took out from a thug.
The thug, as it turned out, was Martin Keamy, the same badass who came aboard the freighter and, in his efforts to get to Ben, killed his daughter. This time, he was taken completely by surprise and dispatched with relative ease by Sayid; the same fate that awaited both Lennon and Dogen in the alpha-verse, though that Sayid appears to no longer be Sayid.
Beta-Sayid did everything he could to avoid violence in getting involved in his brother's affairs. As alpha-Sayid was on the island, he is so consumed with guilt over the acts he was forced to perform while in the Iraqi military as a torturer that he doesn't feel himself worthy of Nadia. His time on the island, it would seem, helped him to forgive himself and realize that he could be worthy of her love.
In most of the flash-sideways we've seen so far, there's been a sense of hopefulness, as if this reality was at least mostly a better place for our characters. Poor Sayid seems to be no better off. The woman he loves is married to his brother, and despite his best efforts to put his violent past behind him, he was pulled right back into it and had to murder three people.
I only caught two notable 815-encounters, and the first one wasn't really notable at all other than to show us that Sayid's brother is at the hospital where Jack works. A quick walk-by and that was it. It was at the end, after he killed Keamy, that Sayid found the man tied up in the closet, and it was none other than beta-Jin. We know Jin was mixed up in Sun's father's mafia empire, and that he was on assignment even while with Sun in America.
Where they can go from here is unknown, but making next week's flash-sideways about Jin would have been nice. Instead, it looks like this particular thread will have to hang for awhile, as next week we get to meet the flash-sideways Ben. At least we'll be following up on a flash-sideways we've already seen: Locke's. I wonder if they'll pick it up directly from the plane, or after that first meeting between Ben and John.
LOST AND FOUND (REVIEWS AROUND THE NET)
-- "But one commonality between both worlds is that Sayid is a man that is, in his mind, unworthy of getting what he wants." [MTV]
-- "Tonight, the teasing ended. Dogen and Lennon are dead. The temple is in ruins. But we may have landed, regrettably, in Zombieland." [Time]
-- "'Sundown' proved that 'Lost' can be thoroughly enjoyable without being revelatory, and experiencing that raw entertainment energy reminded me what I'd miss most about Lost' when it's all gone – the fun." [UGO]
-- "But rather than swapping Sayid's recent bloody deeds for Nadia, expect a devilish switcheroo. After all, Nadia wasn't the only ladylove to check out in Sayid's arms. Remember Shannon?" [MSNBC]
--"There were no less than three times that I expected to see the 'Lost' title appear as it does at the end of each episode, only to discover that there was still 20 minutes left. And it just kept getting better and better." [Inside Pulse]