Sunday, October 12, 2008

Lost Hiatus '08 Day 21: Fill in the Blank

It's been three weeks and four years since Oceanic 815 crashed onto the island. I've managed to stick to my Hiatus Project promise--to watch scenes daily in keeping with the timeline provided by Lostpedia. This morning, I watched scenes from "Whatever the Case May Be."

At the beginning of this venture, there was an awful lot to watch. Day One involved scenes from 11 different episodes; most early season one episodes cover one day, with the next episode picking up right where it left off. As we move into mid-season, though, things are spacing out a little. Yesterday, I didn't have any scenes to watch, and there have been a few days already when I'll just have, like, thirty seconds from "The Other 48 Days" or something.

It really makes me wonder what everybody was up to.

Last week brought Charlie's near-death experience at the hands of Ethan. I love "All the Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues" for a lot of reasons (Jack backstory, Jate development, first fight with an Other, finding the hatch...), but it's really interesting to see it in this perspective, knowing that these characters had only known each other for two weeks. Two weeks, and there they were, trekking out into the jungle to find Charlie and Claire, following in the footsteps of Crazy Ethan.

It's way easier to contrast the beach camp survivors with the Tailies when you're watching it this way. Obviously, the Tailies had problems with the Others from the get-go, but there's definitely something to be said for Jack's superior leadership skills and Ana-Lucia's vastly inferior ones. She sucks. Survival under Ana-Lucia was a breeding ground for fear, suspicion, and paranoia. Survival under Jack wasn't necessarily the most fun thing ever, but at least there was some semblance of trust and, you know, live together, die alone. It's kind of no wonder the Others picked the Tailies to terrorize for a month and a half.

Also, I'm still confused about that. We're supposed to believe that the Others are perhaps "the good guys." Ben or Tom or somebody reminded us that the Oceanic survivors had killed more Others than Others had killed survivors. But here's the thing--the 815ers never kidnapped people and murdered them in cold blood. It was all self-defense or, in some cases, revenge. Here's what I got:

Survivors on Others
Eko kills two Others in self-defense. ("The Other 48 Days")
Ana-Lucia kills two Others in self-defense. ("The Other 48 Days")
Ana-Lucia kills Goodwin. ("The Other 48 Days")
Charlie kills Ethan. ("Homecoming")
Sawyer kills an Other who's stalking. ("Live Together, Die Alone")
Sun kills Colleen in self-defense. ("The Glass Ballerina")
Sayid, Jin, Hurley, and Bernard kill ten Others in defense of the beach camp. ("Through the Looking Glass")
Sawyer kills Tom. ("Through the Looking Glass") Tom had surrendered--I'll give Ben this one.

Others on Survivors
Goodwin kills Nathan. ("The Other 48 Days")
Ethan kills Scott. ("Homecoming")
Mikhael kills Charlie. ("Through the Looking Glass")

In almost all of those cases, the survivors were provoked--intensely. What was interesting--and this is getting off the topic of my Hiatus Project--was seeing what happened when the Freighters arrived. Had Jack and company tortured and terrorized Dan and them, it might have put the Others in a different light--defending their territory and afraid. Yeah, Jack and Juliet pulled that ol' "The Hunting Party" trick of surrounding the Freighters in the jungle, but that was it.

Yeah, now's not the time to get into Keamy's atrocities and Locke's crimes and Ben's choices. All I'm trying to say is that I love Jack--he's better than the Others and better than Ana-Lucia. And, yeah, I needed the Hiatus Project to learn that.

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