Lost, 5x15, "Follow the Leader"
This episode involves a lot of handcuffs and hot men getting punched. I approve this message.
I also choose to save those things for last.
The Others -- 2007
I really wanted to open with the Tori Amos lyric "The gospel changes meaning if you follow John or Mark," but alas, there are no prominent characters with the latter name. Still, that's the dynamic I'm driving at: loving this battle for dominance over The Others. I also really love the fact that Locke is quasi-subscribing to my longtime "The Others Are A Cult" theory when he brings up the fair point that, if this man is so great and wonderful, isn't it odd how no one's ever seen him? (Except for the part where he apparently believes in him enough to want to kill him. Which...I feel might be a tad unwise to allow.)
Plus, dead-boar-for-dinner made a comeback. *thumbs up*
One thing we definitely did not need, though, was the EXACT SAME scene with Locke play out over again. It wasn't even interesting in the first place! I got the idea as soon as he stumbled out of the forest - you should have scrapped that and left in more interesting footage. Show is worse than Survivor sometimes with all the rehashing, I swear.
And I may have, um, laughed wildly at the following exchange:
Sun: This man...'Jacob'...can he tell us how to get Jin and the rest of our people back?
They could not have made her sound more like a planted question-asker if they'd TRIED. That bit of dialogue was almost as bad as a late-night infomercial, or maybe a prescription drug advertisement.
Richard: I'm starting to think John Locke is gonna be trouble.
Ben: Why do you think I tried to kill him?
OK, Richard/Benry is my new favorite non-romantically-involved couple on the island. *snert* I could definitely put up with Locke and Camp Otherton for the entire finale if I could just watch the two of them stand off in the shadows and mutter darkly amongst themselves. Preferably right before striking a coup. Because I love how Locke is like an evil overlord, and Richard is the henchman who will QUIETLY OVERTHROW HIM.
The Others - 1977
Oh good, Daniel's really dead (he had a fauxbituary in Entertainment Weekly and everything). And I still love that they ride around on horseback, giving me my weekly shot of equine joy. (Still needs more horsey content, though) And I find Widmore sort of hot right now, which disturbs me.
And hey, Sayid, nice to see you again! It's so cute how you thought you could actually change things by killing Little Ben. Even cuter than Kate getting her Bitchface of Moral Outrage on when questioned as to why she would save the boy's life. I'm glad Sayid is on Team Jack again, ready to help because he'll either put things right or at least put them out of their misery (that's the spirit!).
I might even believe in Jack's ability to set this thing off, if they didn't have a whole season to go.
(unrelatedly: There is no way I would swim through a long tunnel underwater to do anything. That is like the most terrifying thing ever. WHAT IF YOU GOT TRAPPED. Also I would automatically panic after about 20 seconds and open my motuh and breathe, or at least start thrashing about, wasting time until I really did run out of air and drowned. *shudders*)
Jack/Kate: You know what doesn't help me stop shipping them? Having him be all hotly protective and growling "Take it easy on her!" even though all he gets for his efforts is a kick in the face, when Kate wasn't even being handled all that roughly anyway. They have far fewer qualms about making you bleed than her, Doc; please take note.
...I think that's about all the Jack/Kate I can take for one week. I'm not comfortable going back into those waters. Just...know that lately I have been discovering huge wells of legitimate love for Jack. I'm pretty sure he's in the #5 or 6 position on my totem pole o' living characters right now, to be honest.
Sawyer/Juliet, Level 1:
GET HERE, NEXT EPISODE. Because your promo seems to involve Sawyer getting roughed up in the presence of a woman he loves again, and I had a pretty good time with it the last time that happened.
Um, yeah, it was exactly like last time. Only it was somehow even better than I imagined, because I'd figured Juliet would have that old mask-of-stone settled over her features as she watched but refused to react.
Hah! Not so much! The very picture of silent pain and misery at every blow until she finally couldn't take it anymore and cried out, begging them to stop. (Hi, Directory of the Brain, could you please confirm that my Tragedy file was recently accessed & downloaded by the powers that be from Lost? It was? Excellent).
"You want me to stop? Then tell me what I want to know!"
"Stuart, please! We have known each other for three years. We are not bad people, we are not here to hurt you!"
"Juliet - don't. Whatever you tell them...they ain't gonna believe you. It's only gonna get more people hurt."
I remain impressed by Sawyer's capacity to withstand abuse and simultaneously retain a smart mouth; it's kind of remarkable. Of course, another thing you can count on is that the minute you turn your attentions to a nearby woman, namely one he's in love with, he will explode in blind fury. I'm frankly kind of surprised it took them as long as it did to crack Juliet in the mouth.
(Sidebar: OW OW OW. Even ole Stuart looks appalled at this line-crossing tactic of hitting women.).
Sawyer/Juliet, Level 2:
Only documented coherent response - "SWEETHEART. HOLY SHIT SWEETHEART." Apparently the Directory of My Brain granted TPTB an all-access pass while they were at it.
"Get the women and children on the sub and get them the hell out of here. And if you put me and Juliet on the sub with them...we'll tell you
anything you want to know." He looks at her. "You okay with that, sweetheart?"
"Absolutely." Aaaaand, I'm dead of squee. BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE.
Sawyer/Juliet, Level 3:
I'm not gonna lie; when Sawyer paused before getting on the sub, I had a legitimate moment of sheer TERROR that he was going to see her off and then ditch her so she'd have a better chance of staying safe/getting free. IT WOULD NOT BE THE FIRST TIME.
Thank God for the "good riddance" instead. Because, um, as nice as it's been to watch redeemed!Sawyer take charge and be the one who makes plans and sees to it that he saves everyone, it's even nicer to watch him take the first escape route out with Juliet, screw anybody else left behind.
(I love how all of my pictures are RANDOMLY DIFFERENT SIZES today)
And don't even pretend your shippy little hearts weren't thrilled by the fact that Sawyer didn't for one second hesitate over what escaping the vortex of Craphole Island and getting back to the real world might mean for their relationship. It just means they're free. They. AL;SDJFASLKDJF!
I will probably never be precisely coherent about "I love you" / "I love you back," or the handhold. So I'm just going to stay there, watching it over and over, and deny the part where Kate turns up, again, some more, like a bad penny, to trample all over the sweetness & smiling.
* = and by tomorrow, I mean "the Lost finale is way too big & important to wrap my head around while I'm distracted, so I'm kicking it to the back of the queue and will watch it when I'm good and ready, possibly next week"
And now for a time skip into this week's offerings --
Medium: "How to Make A Killing in Big Business"
Seeing as I love this show, it's all right for me to say that sometimes, even when you pump up a single story into 3 installments...it's not that good, right? Because that's what I'm going to say. I had fun watching it, for the most part, and was entertained by the twists, but I got really tired of looking at Mrs. Michael J. Fox's giant eyes and pinched cheeks, stalking Allison everywhere like a specialized kind of velociraptor, waiting to pounce at the slightest provocation.
And David Morse's characters always have the kind of demeanor that grates on your nerves after a while, with that slooooow, deliiiiiiiberate delivery of EVERYTHING. (except when he's being TERRIFYLING STRANGLY in, say, one of Allison's dreams) I expressly preferred the Neve Campbell and Kelly Preston spring arcs, is what I'm saying.
Besides, it was really uncomfortable to watch them keep threatening her with being suied out of house and home should she so much as breathe a suggestive word in the District Attorney's direction. Even more uncomfortable than it was to watch Joe cheerleading her into taking the fancy new job in the first place, all enticed by the shiny money and neither of them AT ALL questioning the motivation behind such an amazing offer. You'd think one of them - namely Joe - would have had the sense to see that she read the contract over carefully before she signed it. The thing might as well have been offered by Satan himself.
What made it worthwhile? Ariel's storyline. That was AMAZING, between the creepy dead girl and the various effects of rising water/"No more pills, don't shut me out" written all over the blackboard, and the flashes of Miss Snowden standing there all bloodied up. I guess the Universe decided to give Ariel the Special Deluxe package of every possible way the dead use to communicate with mediums for the purposes of murder prevention. "Here, sample everything, see if you like it!"
Very effective, too, having her take her friend's prescription pills to block all that out, initially refusing and then gradually asking for more and more. The confrontation with her parents was handled beautifully - you can't help but feel sorry for her when she sobs that it wasn't for fun or anything, she was just desperate to concentrate. And not in the manner of desperate students who think they need to stay up all night to be the best - she had legitimate, intangible distractions she couldn't escape any other way. Led to some really incredible mother/daughter discussions, too. I always love when they connect over their gift.
Nice little reveal about Allison turning to alcohol at age 14 to cope with the same problem.
And although I could take issue with Ariel practicing analogies for the PSAT - I guess someone forgot to tell Joe they don't have that anymore - I choose to believe that the writers wrote that on purpose to make a statement, since Ariel delivered such a smooth rationale about how it's not supposed to be a *useful* skill, it's supposed to measure your understanding of language.
I don't like how they rushed the ending, though. It was like all of a sudden, they ran out of time and had to cram resolution into five minutes, so WHOOSHBLAMSMACK: Ariel's final dream saves Miss Snowden, Lydecker Jr. gets caught and arrested/will be standing trial, he cut a deal, the Lydecker Psychic is being taken into custody, the company's over, Allison's going back to her old job, with no mention of her supposedly ironclad Satan contract; have a nice day!
Call me crazy, but I would have liked a little more payoff as to how Ariel's dreams nicely intersected with her mother's so that even while the latter was muted under contract, information about Lil' Lydecker could still come out. I would have loved to see Ariel credited for saving the day, whether she explained it to Lee herself or if Allison simply relayed the information. Or just some of the Devalos/Scanlon legwork.
It's also disappointing that Caitlyn, who'd been so good at her job and able to thwart Allison every other step of the way, suddenly not only didn't see any of this coming, but was stupid enough to leave evidence all over the damn place about her shady deals and encouragement of Lydecker Sr's murder.
She'd been a pretty terrifying villain up to that point, but when they suddenly remembered that they had to take her down in the end, they randomly punched holes in her previously impervious armor to have an excuse to put the show back on its usual path. Clumsy resolution to what was an otherwise well-paced, if not especially scintillating, plot.
...I love how I hardly managed to mention anything at all from last week. Um, it was nice to see Lynn again? The whole thing with Lee taking down Dt. Arbok was good. And there was a fair amount of Joe/Allison, I just can't remember it. The end.
[edit: OH SELF. Way to forget the first time in ages that they've had a little action between the sheets!]
And even though this was another double-episode week (annoyingly designed to have another cliffhanger), at 9:00, the previews came on talking about how Allison's spirit had temporarily transferred over to Jeffrey Tambor's body. Oh boy, a whole hour of Jeffrey Tambor? My parents and I simultaneously looked at each other and just went, "...no," and proceeded to change the channel. I'll probably just hold off on that until I get the conclusion next week and can fast-forward at will.
Cold Case, 6.23, "The Long Blue Line" (season finale)
*is not thinking about the fact that this could be the last episode ever*
Whoa. Trippy. You'd think I could have gleaned this from the preview shot of water pouring in through a cracking interrogation room wall, but I just assumed she was having a mental breakdown of sorts.
Definitely WAS NOT expecting the entire episode to be a scenario cooked up in her head while she was still trapped underwater in her car and drowning. Especially considering that she was having flashbacky hallucinations all over the place within that scenario, which you'd think would be enough fallout from the accident. And the fact that apparently, the investigation fell exactly as she'd imagined it, so maybe she should consider a career with the district attorney's office as a psychic consultant - I'm sure Allison DuBois would be happy to give her advice.
...seriously, WTF? I mean, I liked it, I think, but it's going to take me a while to wrap my head around how much was real and how much was simply her imagination. (too bad the LaPaglia Lawyer didn't happen this week; I would have liked to write that off as a fantasy) For now I'll just be impressed with the resolution to Cadet Butler's case - where I will in no way admit that I got all ~*swoony*~ over the repressed romance between her and what's-his-name, nope - and how cute Lil' Lily looked in a blue cop uniform with a long ponytail. (That's the first time in 6 years I've approved of her hair! Score).
I don't know what to make of Stillman first meeting her when she was a little girl, identifying her attacker out of a lineup. Part of me wants to be a tad snarky about how he's like the Richard Alpert of Cold Case - whatever event you need him to be at in the past, he's there! He's lived through it! It's almost spooky! But if pretend each episode is a closed circuit, then yes, there's a nice relationship there.
Last thing on Kate's case - hah, it took me until halfway through part 2 to figure out which person was the one being billed as the "Friday Night Lights star." Had I known that, I might have pegged the redhaired boy killer a little earlier. As it was, I had no idea at all. It was almost disappointed in the anti-climatic addition of the guy in charge cleaning up the original murder and trying to pin it on another cadet whom he himself murdered.
Although, in all fairness, he made a good point about how many women's colleges there are, and how men aren't breaking down the doors to get in them. Sometimes, a separate-but-equal principle can be applied in ways that work and are nice, and don't need tampering with.
Overall...good closure if it is in fact the end, but still with room left to grow if it isn't. Expertly crafted, writers!
(hah, look at the votes on Look Again...25 "one of the season's best!", 3 "hated it!", and not one splash in between.)
HIMYM - 4x23, "As Fast As She Can"
Nice reaction: So...that was kind of dull, wasn't it?
Not as nice reaction: What the hell was that?
I mean, it looked pretty lame when I popped in a couple of times during commercials for House, but I thought, "Oh, it's HIMYM; of course it's going to turn out to be awesome when I watch it the whole way through!"
...no, it's not. It's just going to be this long, disjointed, wandering mess of random un-funny jokes and storylines thrown together for no apparent reason (speeding tickets! Murder houses! Teasers for things that may or may not happen one year in the future!).
Oh, and lots of Stella. For no discernible point or purpose, except to have an annoying storyline about how Tony loved her, but then he dumped her, except not really, and now they're right back where they started in offscreen Lala-Land. Surely you could have found a more expedited and/or relevant way to make me feel a brief moment of sympathy for Ted "I want to find true love" Mosby.
Worst. Episode. Ever.
I did love that he has a "Let's Go to the Mall" ringtone, though. That's freaking awesome. Possibly the one salvageable thing from the finale (and, well, the description of the murder room probably would have been good in an average episode. "That is where my...laundry bags...will hang, for 3 days and 3 nights, before I...clean them.").
I am a) weirdly fond of the way Marshall goes "Oh Ted" (I find myself repeating that tone a lot), and b) um, Lily's been absent for a long time. Little parts of me want to pretend she's died and then wrongly ship Marshall with Robin. I don't know. He objectively described her as a pretty girl and something happened deep in the dark recesses of my brain.
...also, until five seconds ago I was under the impression that this was the season finale, and was highly perplexed by the absence of delivery on a number of spoilers, until I got smart, looked it up, and realized my mistake. *headdesk*
P.S. Go vote in my poll. Even though the results are really depressing so far, and you probably won't have anything different, I desperately want to know if there is even one other person in the world who has watched these movies. They were my reason to live in 5th-7th grade, and I listed them as my all-time favorite movies for years afterward until I realized nobody knew what I was talking about.