Friday, April 25, 2008

"The Shape of Things To Come" - First Reactions

Jason's One Word Review - Mind-blowing

It's hard for me to think of anything that could have made this episode any better than it was. We had a shoot out, Smokey vengenace, and finally some truth.

Let's go over a few topics here...

1.) Who else got the feeling that Ben just physically warped to the Sahara? That would go a long way to explaining the Polar Bear and why Ben didn't care if he blew up the Submarine.

2.) Sayid was not Co-erced into joining Ben. Well at least not outright. We know Ben is a master manipulator.

3.) The Game of Risk? Was it a hint? "Australia is the key to the whole game"

4.) How many times have Ben and Charles done this little dance? Enough for each to know the rules

5.) And lastly how great was it to see Smokey come rushing out of nowhere to kill Ben's enemies on command.

Those are the points that really jumped out at me but there is so much left. The full analysis might be a long one. Haha. The comment section is yours.



Rebecca said...

I LOVED this episode, the whole time my jaw was dropped. I was surprised to see Alex killed but at the same time saw it coming. I guess it's more the way she was killed & the fact that she's a kid (minor) on the show, caught me a little off guard. Smokey was awesome. Did Ben 'call' him or release him?? Why didn't Smokey kill Keamy? (He's in the preview for next week). I was thinking worm hole when Ben woke up in Tunsia & it totally goes with the polar bears. As far as Sayid I was wondering if Widmore's people really did kill Nadia. Can we trust that Ben was telling the truth or did he have her killed or take advantage of a random occurrence and use it to his advantage? I missed the Risk comment but in the actual game Australia is a money spot. From the Ben/Charles interaction I figure Charles was involved with Dharma before Ben did the purge and is trying to take back what was his to begin with. I wonder what Jacob thinks about that... Also, I see it going where Penny ends up on Sayid's list. Though I don't think he would kill her, he would just put Des in the same hurt that he is in over losing Nadia. If anything Sayid wants to take Charles out. I wonder if they're going to share the rules and when we'll find out just when this little dance started.

smacky said...

"As far as Sayid I was wondering if Widmore's people really did kill Nadia. Can we trust that Ben was telling the truth or did he have her killed or take advantage of a random occurrence and use it to his advantage?"

Rebecca, I believe it's another case of Ben responding masterfully at an opportunity that arose. Catch the little smile he showed as he walked away from Sayid? Sayid willingly became Ben's assassin, only on the word that one of Widmore's people killed Nadia.

I doubt her death was connected at all. Just a random act of violence. Ben happened to catch the report on TV in Tunisia and came up with a plan immediately. Damn, Ben is good! He now has a grief-stricken Sayid killing people for him!

SarahK said...

Is it possible that Charles Widmore was on the original ship at Black Rock?

The comment in the "Meet Kevin Johnson" episode about the island not letting you die and the seemless ageless characteristics of some of the original "others" and Widmore's comments about the island being his...

Maybe HE is one of the original inhabitants, but left and couldn't find his way back and he's trying to find it before the ageless effects wear off.

I dunno..just a thought

Anonymous said...

Best episode ever!!!!
Notice when Ben was in Charles' room Charles said....You are here to kill me" and Ben says "Now you know I cant do that". I took that to mean that the Island wont let Charles die the same as it wouldnt let Michael die..Sad to see Alex killed...Smokey.......WOW! That was intense!!! I too think that Ben is messing with Sayid using Naomis death as a way for Sayaid to do Bens dirty work. Wondering whats up with Jack.....I noticed a smirk on Juliettes face when he doubled over in pain in the preview...maybe she is slipping something in his food or drink...Never saw her as one of "the good guys". We know who the Oceanic 6 are, I am just curious as to why the rest of the survivors chose to to stay on the Island, or if they even did "choose".
Still cant figure out what Ben meant when he made the comment after Alex got murdered about not following the plan...Obviously Ben and Charles had discussed the events that were gonna happen on the Island before the frieghters got there but why? Too confusing...But again BEST EPISODE EVER!!!!!

Greg said...

This episode was superb.

I whole-heartedly agree that the reasoning that Charles people killed Nadia is flimsy at best. You could just as easily turn the circumstancial evidence around to say it was Ben's man who killed Nadia, and with Ben having something to gain in Sayid's broken-hearted allegiance, it doesn't seem that unlikely.

Smokey came back in a huge way. Taking this to an economic metaphor: Smokey's Angel of Death routine was the biggest rise in the stock of a character on this show since bottoming-out Charlie peaking during his two episode sent off last season. Will the writers turn their attention to bringing Claire's stock value up before she bites the bullet? I hope so, I was a bit disappointed when I momentarily thought she was killed in the house.

Lock down the purples at Siam, and stockpile enough armys to take over the world. Classic Risk strategy.

And finally, we clearly have seen Desmond travel through time and space. It looks like Ben can too, only unlike Desi, he has some degree of control. Is this how he knows so much? Is this how he got so rich? Is this how he maintains control?

Anonymous said...

It was satisfying to see that Ben could get to Charles but "couldn't" kill him as a way of explaining the obvious -- Ben has so much power to find people why didn't he just take out Widmore? We saw that Desmond went right to him at an auction. This must be about taking out the troops as a way of keeping the other off balance. It also suggests that "The Economist" isn't Widmore as well, because if Ben could get to Widmore that easily then Sayid could as well -- Ben can't simply send Sayid to kill Ben.

My favorite comment was when Widmore said "I know who you are, boy, and what you are" .. Woo-Hoo!!

Anonymous said...

Ben definitely time traveled or something to end up in Tunisia. Was it intentional, though, or accidental? He seemed pretty unsure where he was and his arm was cut? From a bullet?

Also, the Australia comment: I think Claire is going to be crucial in the near future. Too much was made of Sawyer going to get her, plus that comment.

Anonymous said...

Has Ben ever directly killed anyone? He sets up people to be killed but he doesn't do it himself. He set Juliet's boyfriend up to die, he set the original Dharmites up to die (he couldn't have pushed the button himself since he was with his dad), he set up Locke's Dad to die.

The only direct example I can think of is Locke. He shot Locke, but to the gut, not the head.

Maybe he can't kill anyone himself without crossing some moral line where he could never get back to the Island or Jacob.

Widmore on the other hand hasn't killed anybody he perceived as innocent. For all he knew, the guys on the island barracks were the people who killed his original Dharma staff.

SarahK said...

also, he was wearing a coat more suited for the artic than the desert....I don't think he has very good control over where or WHEN...he asked the date after all

Anonymous said...

A key and fascinating distinction of Ben's "time/space" travel is just that! Unlike Desmond, it appears that Ben somehow transports himself physically as well as spiritually. Huge curious question is what Ben did when he entered the back room. It was established, to some degree, that this is the room where Ben stores his "travel" gear including passports and ID, money in various currencies, wardrobe, etc. In that moment, did he time travel?

On another matter, C&L indicated in a recent interview that the meaning or origin of Smokey will remain unclear until the end of the series in 2010.

What a G R E A T show!!!!

Jason said...

Ben killed his own father. He opened the gas canister in the van. As he put on his gas mask.

Anonymous said...

It is interesting also that after the freightor kills Alex, he walks away. Why? Wouldn't he not try to leverage this ficious act into making Ben's captors capitulate into handing Ben to them? Also, in that scene, what did Ben expect the guy to do? Although under extreme duress, did Ben expect the freightor to rethink his threat after Ben declared "....she is just a pawn who means nothing to me?" Again, easily explained by Ben being under the most extreme duress but still somewhat out of character given how Ben has been established to run mental circles around most anyone he encounters. As for revenge, it should be fun to see the guy who pulled the trigger at Ben's mercy at some point hopefully soon!!!! :)

'sarah' said...

I thought FOR SURE that this was where Claire would get the ax, but nope! I think they probably know that we all expect her to die and so they are go to toy with us.

VictorC said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
VictorC said...

I wasn't buying this theory before this episode, but Ben can and most definitely did time travel in this episode.

Notice that he was wearing Halliwax's winter coat with a new hatch logo on it.
I think Ben used that station to time travel, and must have gotten in some kind of fight with someone before leaving, it looked like his wound was inflicted by a knife.

At first I thought it was the Orchid station ( but after seeing the video, the logo looks completely different than the one Ben has in this episode.
You can compare them here:

Anonymous said...

Do we know who Halliwax is?

If not, my theory is that Ben arrived in Tunisia from some artic station somewhere. He was wearing the heavy winter coat, he was shivering when he "popped" into Tunisia, and when he exhaled you could see his breath (like on a cold day).

The wound implies he was in an altercation near or at the time he left, and I think he had his arms straight out when he arrived in Tunisia as though he had been holding on to someone or something.

I still don't see why it has to have been time travel instead of instantaneous travel.

Anonymous said...

Halliwax is one of the names of the scientist guy who does the various orientation videos in the hatches.

No one's sure if Halliwax and Marvin Candle (and another name) are all the same guy or what. Halliwax used both arms; the others looked like they had a fake arm.

VictorC said...

According to lostpedia Halliwax is the same Marvin Candle:

It's obvious that Ben time traveled because he asked the receptionist the date, even confirming the year.

I do agree on the arctic station though, it's possible he was paying a visit to Penny's friends in the arctic.

BTW, am I crazy or does one of the guys in Penny's listening station look like one of the Bedouins Ben attacked in this episode?
Compare the images and let me know:

(I'm using tinyurl because the URL's are long and I can't get to them to show here without splitting them)

I really think it looks like the same person.

Anonymous said...

great links victor. thanks for the info. I don't think it's the same dude though. I have to agree with the anonymous poster that this might be the best episode ever.

I would love to see what's behind the stone wall that ben went inside of to summon smokey. I hope they reveal that room some day.

Anonymous said...

The "shot 'em up" scene got much negative judgement given how Sawyer dodged machine gun bullets. However, Ben explained that they intentionally did not kill Sawyer so he'd be pissed and throw Ben out of the house for them to capture. In other words, it was clearly NOT weak writting showing an implusible scene.

Also, if Whitmore wants Ben captured so badly....why do you think he didn't make an effort in London to somehow capture him once Ben left his apartment? Or...why was Whitmore not stunned to see him if in fact he is the one desperatly trying to capture Ben from the Island? Or....did something happen from the time the freighter guys raided the island until 2005 when Ben confronted Whitmore?

S said...

I think Charles hinted to Ben that neither of them will be able to find the island now. Intriguing....

Jennifer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jennifer said...

Clearly, there are some rules the the "game" between Ben and Charles that we don't yet understand. How interesting though, I also think Widmore has some ties to Black Rock.

Sayid must have also time traveled, right? I was under the impression that Oct o5 was the trip Ben made to see Sayid at Nadia's funeral. Did I miss something?

Anonymous said...

Two things that confused me...

Widmore says "the hunt is on" for the island after Ben says he will never find it. But hasn't Widmore already found it? After all, his people are ON the island...they just killed Alex!

Also, when Ben landed in Tunisia, was he trying to get to Iraq and miscalculated? If not, what was his business in Tunisia? Why go there first?

Simon says said...

To the last poster..

Widmore and Bens meeting could be 1 year after the freightors land, it could be 3 years after... But it appears the freightors are stranded or dead on the island.

I am guessing that Tunisia is a portal point for the travelling. This is backed up by Ben having an account at the Tunisian Hotel and him saying he hadn't been there in some time.

Anonymous said...

Happy times - Lost is back on and we get to speculate and discuss. Great also how the story is now moving along a nice pace.
One thing that has long-time bugged me is 'what is with' or 'how does he do it' get these very detailed files and information together on people AND relatively quickly. Think about it - you'd need access to a vast range of organisations to get these together. Wouldn't this be a key aspect to Other-ness? Does it bug anyone else as much as me?

Anonymous said...

hey Jennifer....I don't believe Sayid time traveled. In addition, I don't think Sayid knows that Ben can or did time travel. Ben was very deliberate in telling Sayid that he got to Iraq visa vie Desmond's boat.

Any clue what this weeks show is about or who it centers on?

smacky said...

Haven't seen this mentioned here, but did you catch the name Ben gave at the Tunisian hotel? Dean Moriarty, the name Jack Kerouac used for his main character in On the Road.

Nice touch.

Steve said...

I may be repeating someone else... but Jason stated that be was 'warped', note that he was wearing a heavy parka in the sahara, and didn't seem to know when, or where he was. What YEAR is it?

Steve said...

I also suspect that Ben may have killed Nadia, I never thought that he setup CFL, but this? The smile on his face when he gets sayid on his side? No, I think he may have killed Nadia, or at least lied about who did to gain a killer.

Now... Why can't ben kill Widemore? What's the deal with his claim that ben took the island from him? Is widemore one of the financers of Dharma?

Who else things that the "orchid" hatch(from Comicon) is how people can 'warp' off the island to various points across the globe?

Steve said...

Moriarty is the nemesis of Sherlock Holmes.

I'm sure it means something...

Steve said...

Moriarty is the nemesis of Sherlock Holmes.

I'm sure it means something...

jack said...

Yeah, but in Sherlock Holmes, Moriarty was the bad guy, and Ben has always referred to himself as the good guy.

Randy said...

Looking the site that "translates" the Hieroglyphics on Ben's door, made me think of what I thought the first time I saw the episode. Did Ben go into the room and time travel right then?

It looks like the glyps could translate into "to summons time." Could Ben have traveled to London and seen Widmore right after Alex was killed and then went back to the island. If he really can time travel, he could make it appear like he was in the room for only a couple minutes.

There has to be something tied to fact that he had to seal himself into the room. It may be a reach, but then again, isn't every speculation with this show. I like the screen cap Jason, good job.