Wednesday, January 19, 2005

A Very Special Lost

Lost Episode Title: "Special"

Character Involved: Michael and Walt (the father and son)

TV Guide Description: Violence ensues and a mysterious island beast makes a re-appearance when Michael and Locke clash over Walt's upbringing. Meanwhile, Charlie is tempted to read the missing Claire's diary, and Sayid enlists Shannon to help decipher the French woman's map.

Brian's Deeper Meaning Guess: I’ve been all over this one for a while. Remember in the first episode, when Walt looked at the Spanish comic book with a picture of an angry polar bear, and minutes later people were being attacked by a polar bear? Coincidence? Remember in the third episode, when Walt wanted Michael to look for his dog Vincent but it was raining and Michael said "I’ll look when it stops raining"? It immediately stopped raining. Coincidence? Remember when Walt needed very particular rolls of the dice against Hurley when playing backgammon and kept getting them every time? Coincidence? I THINK NOT! There is something seriously up with this kid. He is "special". He has "magic powers." Did he have them before they crashed on the island? Maybe. Is the island somehow causing them? Maybe. The previews say "From start to finish, this episode answers more questions than any other episode ever has". Could so many of the island’s mysteries be tied to Walt?

TV Guide Description Breakdown: The mysterious island beast makes his reappearance this week, meaning last week the monster was 100% inside Boone’s head. Is the monster somehow tied to Walt? If you think about it, the monster has only "appeared" twice times where people saw more than the trees moving. The pilot in the first episode. Dead. Locke in the fourth episode. Drastically changed. Everyone else simply hears the mechanical sound and sees trees moving.

Could the monster somehow be connected to "violence" occurring on the island? In the first episode, there was the violence of the plane crashing into the island and the forest. In Locke’s episode, he was attempting to kill the boars, an animal of the island. The monster as a defense mechanism on the island? This could explain why the description says the monster reappears when "violence" occurs between Locke and Michael.

The clash between Michael and Locke has been brewing since episode one. Locke taught Walt backgammon in the first episode - "a game of light and dark". Walt showed interest in wanting to hunt with Locke in later episodes, and looks up to him. Michael somewhat abandoned Walt for his own self interests when he would rather golf than hang out with Walt. There’s a definite rift there.

Why is Locke so interested in Walt? If you think about it, Locke has been working to better everyone on the island so far. Helping Jack get over his father’s death, helping Charlie kick his drug habit, helping Boone un-obsess about Shannon. Could Michael be a negative influence on Walt, that Locke is trying to free him of? Why was Ethan so concerned about kidnapping pregnant Claire? Is there something about babies / kids on the island that give them some magic power? Has Locke figured this out, and wanting to combat the "evil" Claire baby, is recruiting the "good" Walt to his side?

Charlie is still obviously obsessing about Claire - and it’s about time someone did! Since her disappearance three episodes ago, she hasn’t hardly been mentioned. However, I expect that to change next week, where the episode is about Charlie again (and smart money is on his flashback being of what happened when Ethan abducted him and Claire), and the episode is titled "Homecoming." Is Claire coming home? Will she be with or without child? Wait, this is a topic for next week’s Email - I digress…

The last point is about Sayid enlisting Shannon’s help to read CFL’s maps (not to be confused with CCL). But… didn’t this happen last week… and the week before? Maybe this means they actually venture out to follow the maps this week.

Last Week’s Episode Discussion Points:
Last week’s episode was fantastic. It touched upon many characters, hinted at a LOT of different things. I would probably rank it my third favorite, behind the Locke episode and the Charlie episode. Let’s get at it:

LOCKE. Good? Evil? I’m thinking good now. I think Locke is preparing all of them for a battle (the survivors of the plane crash vs. the "Others" on the island OR maybe the cave people vs. the beach people). He's now prepared Jack, Charlie, Boone, and now looks to be working on Walt by making them "let go" of their inner demons / troubles. Does he know that some big battles is coming, and he’s shoring up his side?

Also, can Locke see the future? He was preparing the ointment he put on Boone’s head long before Boone mentioned anything about telling Shannon… and at the end, he said to Boone "Is that what IT made you see?" referring to the monster? This makes the monster seem more physical than something imaginary. Does Locke know that the monster makes you see things? What did the monster show him? The "inner beauty of the island" or whatever he said?

KATE. Where was the plane this week? She seemed totally happy and upbeat compared to last week’s episode, which was weird.

BOONE. What caused the hallucination? The monster? Did Locke know that if someone is left alone in the forest, the island will make them see things? The weird thing is that Shannon’s body was torn up very similar to the pilot’s, and Boone never saw the pilot’s body - only Kate and Jack did. So either it’s a big coincidence that in Boone’s mind, the monster would attack in the same way as in Jack and Kate’s minds, or the monster is actually causing these visions of death. Did the pilot from the first episode really die? Or exist at all?

THE METAL HATCH. I thought the Michelangelo speech Locke gave was very interesting. What is inside the metal hatch? There’s no outside handle, so it can only be opened from the inside. This must mean there is an entrance somewhere else on the island. I think it must be some entrance to a research facility type place. The other option is that it’s some sort of fallout shelter, if the island was used for nuclear experimentation.

THE COMPASS. When Locke gave Sayid the compass, he said "I don’t need it anymore." Sayid and Jack determined that the compass does not point north. Did Locke tamper with the compass to keep Sayid from following the maps and finding something? Or was Locke unaware the compass didn’t work, and simply meant "I know the island well enough to not need this anymore"?

Yikes - I think I’m in trouble, because looking at this Email, almost every sentence is ending with a question mark. I have so many questions! Hopefully, tonight will answer some of them, as promised in the previews. Here’s the other exciting news. Apparently, ABC is working to get the show’s producers to make 24 episodes, rather than the typical 22 episodes most shows have each year. YES! The bad news is that after tonight, there are no new episodes until February 9th.

Also, here are the upcoming episodes, their titles, and the characters involved, just to whet your appetite:

"Homecoming" - Charley’s Second Flashback (will we see what happened when he and Claire were abducted?)

"Outlaws" - Sawyer’s Second Flashback (will we see what caused him to be in the same prison as Boone in last week’s episode?)

"… in Translation" - Jin’s Flashback (how clever is that episode title? Think about it for a second…)

"Numbers" - Hurley’s Flashback (the last flashback of the regular characters - this one has to be huge)

After that, there’s at least 4 more episodes (and I’m hoping 6!), one of which is Locke’s second flashback - so you know that has to be good.

Okay, the Delta House is open for business tonight for Lost / Alias / Meeting point for going to Burning Desires after Lost, if you’re still young and fun.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Lost (and Gone Forever)

(Fun Fact: My most clever Email title ever.. and the closest to my heart. It will become the title of this website. Guster is for Lovers!)

Lost Episode Title: "Hearts and Minds"

Character Involved: Shannon and Boone (the brother and sister)

TV Guide Description: When Locke learns that Boone wants to tell their "secret" to Shannon, Shannon's life is placed in sudden peril, and the shocking truth about her past with Boone is revealed. Meanwhile, Kate is puzzled by Sun's mysterious behavior, and a hungry Hurley must repay a debt to Jin.

Brian's Deeper Meaning Guess: Not too sure about this one. Since it involves both Boone and Shannon, perhaps one is the heart and one is the mind of the relationship (I would go with Shannon as the heart, since Boone seems pretty logical most of the time). However, it could be something altogether different, a more of a "head vs. heart" meaning. Should I do this? I want to, even though my head says this is a bad choice. Here’s the other thing. Word on the street is that this is a pretty racy episode. Lost won an award a few weeks back for being a "Family Friendly" TV program.

When they won, they somewhat laughed at the honor, saying "Wait until you see this episode and then you’ll take it away from us." The two things I think of here is that there is some sort of incestuous relationship between the two, or that they murdered their parents for their money.

TV Guide Description Breakdown: Shocking truth about Shannon’s past? I’m even more intrigued now. The previews showed Locke smacking Boone in the back of the head with a knife, but why would he do that? What does he have to gain by keeping the underground metal structure secret? Unless he is somehow in cahoots with whoever or whatever the metal thing belongs to, it makes no sense. I was so sure that Locke was a good guy last week, but now I wonder again. It’s amazing how many paradigm shifts his character has had thus far on the show! Why would Shannon knowing about the metal lair put her in danger? It also looks like she is getting carried away in the previews. By what? The monster? The ropes that were around her? The ropes were also around Boone in the preview. Does this mean that Locke tied them both up when they were getting too close to finding out some secret on the island? Or is evil Ethan (and the Others) back?

Is Shannon a goner? This would play very easily into the "The island is purgatory" theory, where a character is "removed" from the island when their secrets are revealed to others. It sounds like we’re going to find out Shannon’s deep dark secret, so she could be killed this episode.

Sun’s mysterious behavior might be caused by the fact that she heard Jack and Kate’s conversation last week. If she heard that Kate was a criminal, it might cause Sun to act differently around her.

I have no idea about what Hurley will have to do in order to repay a debt to Jin. Sun and Jin have been pretty absent on the show lately, so it’s interesting that they’re being mentioned twice in this week’s description. From the looks of upcoming episodes, Hurley will be the last one to have his backstory revealed, so you know it has to be BIG. Watch him very closely…

Last Week’s Episode Discussion Points:

THE PLANE. This small toy has been torturing me and consuming my thoughts since last week. I now have a small toy plane sitting on the top of my computer at work. Seriously. The problem is that I still have NO IDEA what the meaning behind it is. Let’s just hit the facts first:

1. The plane belonged to someone Kate loved.
2. The plane belonged to someone Kate killed.
3. Kate had the key to the safe deposit box, but not the signature card.
4. Kate setup an elaborate bank heist as a front to get this box.

And then here are my thoughts:

1. She knew about the box, but did she know she was going through all this to get a toy plane? If she did all that for sentimental value, I’d be surprised. Especially because if it was just sentimental value, why couldn’t she tell Jack and / or Sawyer what it was? She was trying to be VERY secretive about getting this little toy plane...

2. Who did the safe deposit box belong to? "Someone she loved" and "Someone she killed". Her husband? Her lover? Her father? Her brother? Her son? Due to the nature of how safe deposit boxes work, I think we can rule out her husband (if she is even married?) and her son (if she even had a son?) because Kate would surely be on the signature card in either of these cases. Did she kill to get the key to the box? Or did she accidentally kill someone and then came across the key?

3. The weird thing is that the whole bank heist happened in America, so this is before the whole "I’m an outlaw in Australia" story that we saw in week three. So this pretty much rules out anything about the plane giving her a message (like, "You need to be on this plane", "Avoid this plane", etc.) because the only reason she ended up on Flight 815 is that she got caught by the Bounty Hunter and put on that plane.

4. The big thing is that there has to be some importance to the plane. My best guess is below…
KATE. So, is she really a bad guy? She was reluctant to kill anyone in the bank robbery, shooting people in the legs and not allowing the bank president to be killed. Was this the first crime she committed? She must have at least done SOMETHING else either before or afterwards in order to have a bounty on her head, that would be posted in multiple countries around the world (i.e. - Australia) and be worth having a bounty hunter come after her. Did she lead a life of crime until coming upon the toy plane? Or did the toy plane lead her to a life of crime?

BEST GUESS. I’m leaning towards getting that plane to being a turning point in her life. It made her see the error of her ways, which caused her to run and try and start over with a simple life in Australia. I’m still not 100% clear on it, but this is my best guess. The only problem being who the box belonged to? Someone she loved - but then why did she kill them? Was she that driven by money, thinking that someone with a safe deposit box would be rich? The plane would then serve as a simple reminder that money is not everything in life… and also serve as an ironic twist to her current situation.

THE SONG. The song that was all over CFL’s maps, the one that Shannon finally recognized is "La Mer", written and recorded at the close of World War II by French music idol Charles Trenet. Most Americans know "Beyond the Sea" as Bobby Darin’s 1960 hit. This is the song which plays during the closing credits of Finding Nemo (the animated fish movie she refers to). So what’s the deeper meaning behind the song? Is it being used as some sort of map? What is it leading them to? Is it just CFL being crazy and writing something that is familiar to her to prevent her from getting crazier? Here’s the info on the song:

"La Mer" is generally performed with all the solemnity of a national anthem.

The song describes the fluctuating moods of the ocean, finding in the depths of the waters "the sea shepherdess of infinite azure," "pure angels," and "white sheep." It’s a kind of a mood poem about the different moods of the sea, and how the sea affected him-the tides reflecting the skies, sometimes the clouds-and how the sea could be happy or sad. The American version was made into a love song. There’s somebody standing on the shore waiting for their lover to come back, never to sail again, so they can be together.

The sea
which one sees dancing along the clear gulfs
to sparkles of silver.
The sea
Of changing sparkles
Under the rain.
The sea
Confuses the summer sky's sheep
With angels so pure.The sea
Shepherdess of blue infinity.
Next to the ponds
Those tall wet reeds.
Those white birds
And those rusty houses [cabins of boats?]
The Sea
Has rocked them [like a baby]
Along the clear gulfs.
The Sea
Has rocked my heart for life.

There are lyrics in there that could suggest the whole "they are all dead" theme - "angels", "blue infinity", but I think the more relevant lyrics will be the ones concerning "Look next to the ponds, those tall wet reeds", which could be a reference to the pond that Sawyer and Kate swam in where they found the briefcase. What if the song lyrics, coupled with the mathematical equation on the papers, makes a map of sorts? Start at the pond, go this far in this direction, "rusty houses" = the metal thing Boone and Locke found???

NUMBERS. The flight number of the plane they were all on was 815. The safe deposit box that Kate got the plane out of was 815. That’s weird. There were also some numbers written on the one wing of the plane (5205, I believe) - a flight number?

ROSE. She seems so confident that her husband is alive. There could easily be another "tribe" somewhere else on the island. But here’s another theory - what if she knows that she is dead, but her husband is alive? Maybe all the "survivors" on the island are really the ones who died, and everyone else is alive. It would be very Nicole Kidman in "The Others", but it would be interesting. There’s more to Rose than we are led to believe. They’ve had her specifically say "My husband is alive" too many times for nothing to come from it.

After last week’s somewhat slow, but very puzzling episode, I expect this week to be a great episode. Of course, stay tuned for Alias afterwards. Last week, Lost received it’s highest ratings ever, and so did Alias. Good work, people. Let’s keep shows like this on the air instead of reality TV.

On a personal note, I’ll be unable to attend the traditional Wednesday night gathering at the Delta House tonight. Unfortunately, I’ll be in Wyomissing, PA for work. If my flight there is 815, I’m not getting on…

PS - did anyone understand the title of the Email?

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

L O S T / A L I A S

This is going to be another big one, mostly because this is the biggest Wednesday so far in 2005 (also, it's the first Wednesday of 2005, but whatever). After three grueling weeks without, we finally get a new Lost. To make the deal even sweeter, it's followed by a two hour season-premiere of Alias (more on that later for the newbies and skeptics out there). Needless to say, there's a lot to be excited about. Let's get down to business.

Lost Episode Title: "Whatever the Case May Be"

Character Involved: Kate (Part II - Yes!)

TV Guide Description: Jack, Kate and Sawyer fight over possession of a newly discovered locked metal briefcase which might contain insights into Kate's mysterious past. Meanwhile, Sayid asks a reluctant Shannon to translate notes he took from the French woman, a rising tide threatens to engulf the fuselage and the entire beach encampment, and Rose and a grieving Charlie tentatively bond over Claire's baffling disappearance.

Brian's Deeper Meaning Guess: This one is pretty easy, I think. It's really three-fold:
1. Whatever the case may be, referring to the newly discovered locked metal briefcase in question.
2. Whatever the case may be, referring to Kate's crime and the "case" involved with her being wanted by the law / bounty hunters.
3. Whatever the case may be, referring to Jack not caring what the "case" or "crime" that Kate committed, because he hearts her anyways!

I'm wondering where this briefcase comes from - this can't be the metal thing that Locke and Boone discovered last week because that seemed to be huge and buried pretty good underneath rocks and mud and stuff. Also, from the looks of the previews, I was sure this would be a Boone and Shannon episode, since they seem to focus a lot on the two of them. I guess it will likely be similar to how the last new episode was Jack Part II even though the storyline really focused more on Charlie and Claire. Which brings us to our discussion items:

1. Okay, let's check out the TV Guide description first.

a. Jack, Kate, and Sawyer fight over the briefcase. Okay, so perhaps this is something that Sawyer has been hoarding for a while and Kate just now sees and makes the connection to? (I would think that if this was the case, it would be pretty easy for Kate to get it away from Sawyer with her womanly ways) Was this something that the bounty hunter was carrying on the plane?

b. Sayid asks Shannon to translate the French woman's notes. So Sayid is at least confiding in Shannon about his encounter with CFL (Crazy French Lady). Perhaps this is what puts Shannon into danger, which is what looks like it happens on the previews.

c. A rising tide threatens to engulf the fuselage and entire beach encampment. This would be a great way to get all the characters back in one camp (the caves) to create new group dynamics / tensions (and force Jack and Kate to hook up!) But since they've already been on the island for a few weeks and this is the first time the tide has risen so high, does this make any sense? Tides rise and fall on a daily basis. Is the island sinking? Or is this more "magic" like how it will stop and start raining instantaneously? (Note: I actually read that they wanted to get rid of the plane debris on the beach to make filming easier - this way they can use any part of the beach and not have to worry about setting up a two story fuselage to film.)

d. Rose and Charlie bond over Claire's disappearance. So Rose is still on that island! It's been a while since we've seen her last. I wonder if this means that Charlie is out of his daze from last week - if so, how much will he be talking? The obvious connection here is that Rose thinks her husband is on the island and missing, much like Charlie thinks Claire is still alive on the island and missing. We always assumed that Rose was nuts, but what if she's not - and her husband is discovered with Claire?

2. Now back to the last new episode, which was fantastic!

a. In theory, the abduction of Charlie and Claire could have been carried out by Ethan alone, but I doubt it. Unless there was someway that he "held Claire hostage", he would have had to overpower Charlie to get him to come with him. Plus, did you see how Charlie was strung up in the tree? There is NO WAY one man could do that. That's the work of a lot of guys (with ladders or something?) So are these the people encountered on the way back from Black Rock, as CFL put it? Do you think there's a whole clan of them? Where did they come from?

b. What kind of super power does Ethan Rom have? He seemed almost supernatural in fighting Jack last time (moving way too fast, being a bit too strong). How did Kate not see him or hear him? It makes me wonder about Kate. She didn't hear the screaming either when they were chasing after them in the woods. It's weird.

c. So, let's say that Ethan is part of some "cult" on the island, why do they want Claire's baby so badly? Is there some prophecy about a baby coming to the island? Is there a connection with the psychic that put Claire on the plane? Is all of this way off?

d. I'm more convinced than ever that Ethan is not Alex.

e. Did Ethan intend to kill Charlie? How long do you think he was hanging there? You can only hang for like two or three minutes before the lack of oxygen makes you go brain dead - but most of the time, people who are hung die from their necks breaking. The thickness of the ropes around his neck prevented this from happening - was that intentional? They could have just used one rope...

3. Other thoughts:

a. How about the symbolism of Jack saving Charlie, after Charlie saved Jack during the cave in?

b. Did Locke know that he and Boone were approaching the metal tunnels of the cult? Remember how he kept telling Boone to back because it was late, but Boone refused? Maybe he was afraid they were getting too close? Also, once they found the metal underneath, Locke kept hitting it with his flashlight - that would be SUPER LOUD if you were inside the metal below, and could serve as a warning sign to hide... The thing is, up until this point, I was firmly back on the "Locke is a good guy" side - now I'm back to "I have no idea."

c. The scenes for this week show Jack yelling at people (I think he's going crazier and crazier as the season goes on), Kate and Sawyer running through the forest (probably one has the suitcase and the other is chasing them for it), and Shannon being carried away as Boone looks on - is this Shannon and Boone coming face to face with the monster? Is Shannon getting eaten? Since Locke was with Boone, is he going to be there to somehow communicate with the monster like he did when he first met it?

Okay, unfortunately, since it's been so long since the last episode, that's all I can think of. I'm somewhat ashamed...

The good news is, there's plenty more Email to go! We need to hook you on Alias, which will be immediately following Lost. Here we go...


Alias Pitch:

Keen to jump into the fourth season premiere of "Alias" this coming Wednesday but worried that as a new viewer you won't understand what's going on? Don't panic. According to an interview with creator J.J. Abrams, the two-hour opener will be easy for newcomers to follow - "We're not going to have any reprise (of previous seasons). We're not going to have any explanation...In no way is this first episode imposing or convoluted".

The plan, at least for the earlier episodes of this coming fourth series, is that more than a few of the episodes will be self-contained. Like any show there's more rewards in it for the long-term viewer but the strategy is at least for the opening few weeks to make it easy for a new audience to jump into the show which hopes to benefit from its post-"Lost" timeslot. Don't expect the show to go all "CSI" reset each week style however, as the season goes on "Alias" will move back into the larger schemes (essentially it's like the show's first season all over again). "Hopefully, people will be so invested in the characters that they'll enjoy the ride" says Abrams.

Indeed, already a few reviewers of the first half of the premiere episode (which introduces Angela Bassett in a recurring role) have been raving it's better than ever, "the first ten minutes of the premiere are among the most exciting I've ever seen on TV" says TV columnist Kristin from E! Online.

Alias Summary:
Okay, so now that I've sold you on why you should be watching this show, here's a brief summary of the first three seasons of the show. Brace yourself:

For those unfamiliar with the show, it essentially plays out like a forty-five minute episode of James Bond, with plenty of high-tech gadgets, flamboyant action sequences, and rapid-fire dialogue.
Alias, if you don't know, features Jennifer Garner in the role of Sydney Bristow. Sydney is an agent for the CIA...or that's what she thought. Turns out Syd is working for SD-6, a secret, nefarious organization working against the interests of the United States and other law-abiding nations.

Sydney discovers the truth in the first episode after SD-6 kills her fiance. Determined to avenge his death and destroy SD-6, she approaches the CIA with the plan of being a double agent - continuing to work for SD-6, but all the while stealing intelligence and foiling their plans for the CIA. Vaughan (Michael Vartan), a young, handsome CIA agent, becomes Sydney's handler and she passes the SD-6 secrets on to him.

Her father, Jack (Victor Garber), is also working for SD-6, but Syd comes to find out that he is also a double agent for the CIA! To say Syd and Jack have a strained relationship is to grossly understate the situation. Syd, as she says in the intro to most episodes in Season 1, hardly knows her father. Her mother (supposedly) died in an accident when Sydney was very young, and her father has always been emotionally distant.

The premise of the show is that Jack and Syd, sometimes working together, are trying to destroy SD-6 from the inside. The main plot-line in Season 1 is that SD-6 wants to collect as many artifacts of Milo Rambaldi as possible. Rambaldi is a 15th century architect who may have been a prophet. As Vaughan would say, "think Leonardo Da Vinci crossed with Nostradamus". The hunt becomes a race with another group for these items, headed by the mysterious "The Man."

In the course of the season, Syd also discovers that her mother was a KGB agent and that she is very much alive. Her mother only married her father as part of a KGB plot, and then left him and Syd by faking her own death when her mission was over. The season ends with Syd finally coming face to face with "The Man". A tied up Syd watches the figure come into the room and utters "Mommy?"

The search for Rambaldi artifacts remained the central plot point in Season 2. However, the main event of the season occurred halfway through, in an episode that followed the Super Bowl, that changed the Alias world forever. After accessing security codes on an airborne server, the CIA raids all SD cells simultaneously. In a single hour, SD-6 was no more, Syd was no longer a double agent, and the show became focused on the "Spy Family" of Jack, Syd, and Irina. Irina (Syd's mom) has a ton of knowledge on the subject matter, so the CIA takes her into custody and uses her for information throughout the season. Also, the destruction of SD-6 finally allowed Vaughan and Sydney to become romantically involved (as there was no danger in someone from SD-6 seeing the two of them together)! However, the rest of her personal life is pretty much destroyed. In addition to her fiancé being killed in the first season, her best girl friend Francie has been murdered and her best guy fried Will has to go in the witness protection program - all of the people close to her have suffered because of her spy job, through no fault of their own.

The season ended with a HUGE cliffhanger, with Syd waking up on the streets of Hong Kong, two years in the future, with no memory of the previous two years.

The third season is basically divided in two: the first half dealing with Sydney's attempts to find out where she'd been for such a long time. The second half focuses once more on the relentless pursuit of the sacred Milo Rambaldi artifacts, which may hold the answers to Sydney's destiny.
When Sydney comes back to the CIA, she is shocked to find out what's happened in those two crucial years. Her father, Jack (Victor Garber) is being unlawfully held in prison due to his questionable methods of trying to track down his missing daughter. Her mother is in hiding (and never appears all season, ex except via written communication with other characters). Her arch-nemesis, the shifty monster Arvin Sloane (Ron Rifkin - former head of SD-6) has been granted a full pardon by the government for his role in bringing down over a dozen terrorist cells and is the head of a charitable group. We still do not know if he is truly good or bad. Most shocking is that her former lover, agent Vaughn is now happily married to the National Security Council's CIA liaison Lauren Reed (Melissa George).

The new evil enterprise this year is the Covenant. This terrorist outfit is determined to collect the Rambaldi artifacts, which are extraordinarily powerful devices that hold the key to Sydney's fate, and the fate of the world. The CIA must stop the Covenant from solving the equation of Rambaldi's endgame, so Sydney and her team attempt to capture these priceless gems and figure out their true meaning before the Covenant can get their hands on them. We find that Vaughn's wife, Lauren, is also working for the Covenant and is pure evil (also having an affair with a high up Covenant member, Mr. Sark).

The season wraps up with the Rambaldi artifacts leading to Sydney's long lost half-sister, Nadia - an Argentinean spy who was imprisoned in Russia. Nadia's subconscious held the key to the last Rambaldi artifact. The season finale ends with Sydney killing Lauren, whose dying words direct Syd to a safety deposit box. The final scene of the season shows Syd reading a piece of paper from this box with a shocked look on her face. Her father, Jack enters the room and says "You were never supposed to find out about this."

So there you go. Again, none of that knowledge is necessary to start watching the show now - but if you're curious what the show is all about - that's it! (I would highly recommend sitting down and watching the DVDs, as the show is incredibly fun, exciting, and engrossing.) Hopefully I've intrigued you about the show, and the fact that this is a great starting point to watch the show will keep you planted in your couch for the entire evening.

All are welcome at the Delta House!