Brian's Two Word Review: Surprisingly fair.
I went into this preparing to be absolutely blown away... but I wasn't. It's kinda ironic - for most of the third season, the flashbacks were the weak part of the show - with the on-Island action being where we really wanted to spend our time. Yet this week, I found myself longing for more flashforward action... in part because the on-Island action felt surprisingly filler-like for a series with only 47 episodes left.
What do I mean? Think about where we left the show at the end of the third season. Jack called Naomi's boat and Naomi was "killed" by Locke. What happened in the fourth season premiere? Kate called Naomi's boat and Naomi officially died. In reality, the only true on-Island plot that was furthered was the reconnection of the Survivors, followed by the split into Team Island and Team Rescue. Even Charlie's death was surprisingly ignored by most everyone except Hurley and Claire. Also, the dialogue felt a little bit off. Some of the Rose / Bernard / Naomi lines felt a tad cheesy, and a little un-Lost-like.
Still, there were plenty of intriguing tidbits in the episode worthy of discussion at work tomorrow morning:
Oceanic 6. This is the phrase I read in some blasted TV magazine that ruined the surprise of the giant number "6" in the season preview clip - because as soon as I read those two words together, it made perfect sense to me: only six people made it off the Island alive. We've seen Jack, Kate, and Hurley - which leaves room for three more. My money would still be on some combination of the pregnant ladies and the star-crossed lovers (Sun / Jin, Claire, Desmond) occupying the other three spots - but I'll get into that during my in-depth review.
Oceanic 31. (Is that how many Survivors are left besides those six?) Based on the episode, this is the far bigger question - what the heck happened to everyone else? It seems like they are very much alive, and possibly very much in need of rescue since we've now seen both Jack and Hurley reference "going back" and feeling guilty for what happened when they escaped the Island. Have the Freightors taken over the Island and turned them into slaves - a la Dharma using the Island originals for wacky experiments? Did the Oceanic 6 somehow have a hand in all this? They all seem very guilty - and very afraid of each other spilling the truth about what happened.
Naomi. Seriously? She's got a knife halfway through her back and can crawl off into the jungle without any of the 30 people around her noticing, make a fake trail, then climb a tree to attack Kate - but then die after a few seconds of talking? Not good, Lost writers - not good.
Rescue. How ironic. The episode ended with a Freightor stating "we're here to rescue you." Yet we know from the season preview that the same Freightor will be saying "we can't say that rescuing you is our primary objective" in the very near future. Something's fishy... and if I was picking sides, I'd go with Team Island.
Eye. So who was the eye inside Jacob's cabin? It was pretty clear that it was an image of Jack Shepherd in Jacob's chair, and that the eye was an entirely separate entity. Nominees include Locke (who was right in the area, possibly hanging out in the cabin with Jacob and scheming) or the same eye from last season - which would be Jacob (meaning that Jacob and Christian were hanging out in the cabin).
At the very least, it's clear that Jacob is quite real. Heck, Hurley even thinks the Oceanic 6 are still being "haunted" by him, calling them to come back and rescue the Island.
Okay - that's enough mindless rambling for now. Full analysis soon!