Saturday, January 02, 2010

Lost - Season 5 Review

US Airdate: February 10th – May 13th 2009

The Ultimate Do-Over: At this point in Lost’s run, you are at a point of thinking that the writers cannot pull any more surprises on you. We’ve had enough stations, back and forth alliances, moments of mysticism, flashbacks and flash forwards, so what else can they possibly pull off in the fifth season?

How about time travel? Lost is science-fiction and we’ve had enough craziness in the previous four years, so it’s not like it would be the most bizarre thing to ever do. Plus it would go on to create new problems and offer some explanations on certain characters as well as meeting younger versions of established character.

The two-part opener, “Because You Left” and “The Lie” introduce the concept well enough as Sawyer, Juliet and others fending for their lives back on the erratic island. In the present you’ve got Ben kick starting his campaign to get the Oceanic 6 back on the island because it’s destiny. Translation: Ben is an idiot, with Locke quickly gathering apace.

“Jughead” is the episode that introduced a vital part of the mystery leading to the finale but it’s also a rather nice for Daniel and Charlotte as well. Neither of whom get out of this season alive with Charlotte becoming affected by the time jumps in “This Place Is Death” and Daniel getting shot by a younger version of his mother in the 100th episode, “The Variable”. At least one of them went out on a big one.

In between those episodes, we’ve got a lot of interesting stuff bubbling under. The Oceanic 6 are definitely different people. Sayid went from being an assassin for Ben to doing good in his own way after Nadia’s death, while Kate attempted to keep Aaron’s parentage a secret and Sun went to her own lengths to try and kill Ben. Sadly, she did not succeed but there’s a certain glee when she whacks him across the head in “Dead Is Dead”.

Jack’s stories are less interesting and apart from an Ana-Lucia appearance via hallucination, I really didn’t care for Hurley’s either. Also after playing such a vital role in the previous two years, Desmond is fairly surplus to requirements in the second half of the season. He didn’t even pop in the finale.

As for the gang on the island, stranding them in 1974 with the Dharma Initiative was a bloody genius idea. Also genius was hooking Sawyer and Juliet up as a pair. I didn’t think I would enjoy it as much as I did but they both convinced me and I sort of hated when Jack and Kate reappeared at the halfway point of the season because I knew it was going to be the beginning of the end.

The weird thing is that in the last two seasons, Kate’s been far less irritating but Jack is still largely hit and miss at times and you could trust him to get behind the idea of giving everyone a brand new start without considering the consequences of his actions. However, “The Incident Parts 1 And 2” still maintained the series penchant for ending on a bizarre but intriguing note as well as the sad ending for Juliet.

Similarly strange was the introduction of Jacob. Here was a character who’s been discussed for ages and when we finally meet him, the man posing as Locke tricks Ben into killing him. Better thought out were the introduction of Illana and her crew as well as the genius nudging of Ellie Hawking. Surely she’ll be reappearing in the show’s sixth and final year.

DVD EXTRAS: I say this every time I review this show on DVD but it’s always bears repeating, this show rocks with extras. Okay, the commentaries for “Because You Left” and “He’s Our You” are a bit boring but you get some nice video diaries with Michael Emerson and Nestor Carbonella, the usual behind the scenes look at certain episodes, a nice look at the issue of time travel on the series as well as more on the Dharma Initiative and a splattering of bloopers and deleted scenes.


5x01: Because You Left = 8/10, 5x02: The Lie = 8/10,
5x03: Jughead = 7/10, 5x04: The Little Prince = 8/10,
5x05: This Place Is Death = 8/10, 5x06: 316 = 9/10,
5x07: The Life And Death Of Jeremy Bentham = 9/10,
5x08: LaFleur = 9/10, 5x09: Namaste = 8/10,
5x10: He’s Our You = 8/10, 5x11: Whatever Happened, Happened = 8/10,
5x12: Dead Is Dead = 7/10, 5x13: Some Like It Hoth = 6/10,
5x14: The Variable = 9/10, 5x15: Follow The Leader = 8/10,
5x16: The Incident Part 1 = 10/10, 5x17: The Incident Part 2 = 10/10.

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