Jake asked me a while back why I don’t do any Lost write-ups. The reason was that I didn’t watch the show. It started in the days before I owned a television, so there’s a lot that I missed. And it’s been hard for me to catch up because (as far as I can see) the show’s not in syndication. Plus, the Internet jerks around, pauses, freezes, etc., whenever I try to watch it there.
But, yesterday, I checked out the first two volumes of Season 1 from my public library (I guess I benefit from government, after all!). I watched the first volume last night, and it contains the first four shows. I can see why the show is so popular! There’s a mysterious quality about it, and I also like the way that it goes into the backgrounds of the various characters. Even when I read on wikipedia what will happen in the coming seasons, I still want to watch the shows themselves to see the events actually unfold.
There was only one character I recognized, and that’s Shannon. She played Martha Moxley on Murder in Greenwich. That’s a good movie because you see a lot of interesting things: the corruption of the Kennedys, sibling rivalry, the frustration of romance, the redemption of Marc Fuhrman, etc., etc. Shannon’s a little nicer on that movie than she is on Lost, but that’s just my humble opinion.
Kate somewhat intrigued me, since she’s a fugitive from justice. But what I read on wikipedia about her crime was pretty much what I expected to find: she murdered someone who was abusing her. We’ve seen this motif before.
The character I most identify with is John Locke. He’s a putz with huge ambitions. He reminds me of Walter Mitty because he has a rich fantasy life in which he’s a colonel, when actually he’s just a telemarketer (wikipedia called him a bill collector) who’s bullied by his boss. He claims he has a girlfriend named Helen, when actually “Helen” is just someone he’s been talking to on the phone while paying for phone sex. He offers to take her to Australia, but she says she doesn’t date customers. Locke’s pretty pathetic!
Locke’s dream is to go on a safari to Australia, and he’s obviously a knowledgeable person. (When he’s later stranded on the island after the plane crash, he knows many intricacies about hunting for food.) But the managers of the safari tell him he can’t go because he’s a paraplegic. Locke is outraged, as he shouts his usual line of “Don’t tell me what I can’t do!” But when the plane crashes on the island, he is surprised to find that he’s able to walk again: for some unknown reason, the island has healed him.
On a hunting expedition, he sees a monster while no one else is around. This monster has terrorized the people on the island, but Locke’s the only one who has actually seen him. When the self-appointed leader of the stranded party, Dr. Jack, asks him if he saw the monster, however, Locke says no, as his wheelchair is burned with the bodies of the dead passengers. Locke may be showing gratitude to the island for giving him a fresh start on life–by healing him of a condition that has held him back. I found the scene to be very moving.
I know that many of my readers know the future of these characters, since the show has been on for a while. I know that Locke actually dated a woman named Helen, and that a mysterious group called “the Others” has had their eye on him for some time. I also realize that he dies later in the series. But I’ll see these things as I watch the series unfold. So far, I like the motif of an apparent nobody turning out to be a somebody.