Page 1 of 14 1 2 3 ... 13 14 >
Topic Options
#565533 - 02/08/10 08:10 AM LOST: Anyone here still watching?
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Here's some of the stuff I thought about "LA X," Season 6's premiere episode.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#565541 - 02/08/10 11:07 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
My wife and I just rewatched the series through in time to pick up with season 6. It actually took us until season 5 to mentally connect first name to last name, and realize that Jack's dad's name is Christian Shephard. We felt damn foolish. Then we got a little annoyed at J.J. Abrams, because... seriously? "Christian Shephard?"

This, to us, is the experience of watching Lost.

But seriously, I think you're right... I doubt the show is going, after all that build-up, to come down to basically a remake of The Stand. And it hasn't escaped our notice that the "Devil" character is making use of both Captain Blindfaith (Locke) and the closest stand-in the non-mystic characters have for Satan (Ben).

That being said, the show does seem to have spent the last season and a half slowly whittling away characters that aren't reducible to a great good/evil faith/reason passion/logic throwdown, either by killing them off, or just shuffling them out of the spotlight. I have a feeling the only characters I'll be rooting for by the end will be Hurley and Miles.

(And that if there's a character who does say, "Hey, thanks for all the attention, honest, but I'd just as soon not take part in your little war for good and evil," it'll be Hurley.)

Top
#565558 - 02/08/10 12:58 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
MBunge Offline
Member

Registered: 07/19/01
Posts: 3386
Loc: Waterloo, Iowa, United States
I've never seen more than a snippet of LOST here and there as I flip through the channels. Before I even think about renting the DVDs, I want to know something.

The impression I get is that the show has done some pretty good character pieces through the use of flashbacks, but that most of the overall narrative is of somewhat questionable quality that you need to be attatched to the characters in order to swallow. Am I way off on that?

Mike

Top
#565560 - 02/08/10 01:35 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MBunge]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
In my opinion... yes and no. There are certainly moments on the show that'll make you roll your eyes, but just as many that'll make you desperately fumble for the next DVD because you HAVE TO WATCH THE NEXT EPISODE RIGHT THE FUCK NOW.

I'd also say the characters are about as 50/50. I can't stand Jack, the ostensible protagonist of the show. I go back and forth on Locke, who has developed into the antagonist. (Maybe. Sort of. It's complicated.) I dither about equally on Sawyer, who I only developed some affection for in season 5. I like Sayid, I love Hurley, and I love Ben. And I think the first season episodes about Sun and Jin are some of the high points of the show. (Both in characterization and storytelling.)

Can't stand Charlie, don't care about Claire, go back and forth on Desmond...

Yeah. There are a lot of characters and a lot of plots going on all at once. It gets annoying, and it gets awesome. It's so scattershot that you will like something, and something will annoy you.

Top
#565583 - 02/08/10 03:58 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MBunge]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
I accidentally caught one episode during that season Invasion was on (and I only watched Invasion because I was also watching the other two "alien" shows, Threshold on CBS and Surface on NBC). The flashback pieces were highly annoying. Being stranded away from society is a transformative experience, so I really don't care what these people did before.

After viewing it I read a few blogs about the show and the general concensus seemed to be that the ultimate development in the series will come in the form of a flashback of someone having a flashback.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#565599 - 02/08/10 08:55 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
As a long time LOST viewer (since Sept. 22, 2004) I’m willing to throw in a few of my own thoughts concerning the show. For me it’s always been a series that is well done. It may not be 100 percent perfect but at it’s best it’s often breathtakingly beautiful, exciting, heartbreaking, and even hillarious.

THE SHOW’S USE OF FLASHBACKS - Both Mike and Allen brought up the use of the flashback device and questioned it’s use. When the show began I was a little annoyed by the use of the Flashback since at first it didn’t seem to have any use other than to the flesh out a characters background and to do a story that is set off island. As time went on I began to appreciate the flashback for a variety of reasons. At their best they are both an engrossing character study and an engaging story that most of time connects up with the main island narrative. Plus, they often give the viewer a glimpse of some of the pre-crash mythology that wouldn’t be possible any other way. Richard Alpert’s immortality, if that’s what it truly is, was first established through several flashbacks, most notably Ben’s and Loche’s. The cast’s interconnectedness was also established mainly through various flashback’s.

THE SHOW’S ENSEMBLE CAST OF CHARACTERS - I’ll be the first to admit that LOST’s large cast is both a strength and a bit of a weakness. It’s a strength because of the richness of the cast and the genuine chemistry that occurs when there is the perfect mix of characters on the screen. This is particularly true when the Ben and Loche show is going on. Or when that slapstick duo of Hurley and Sayid are on the screen. This particularly works out well if Sayid has been knocked out. On the other hand it’s a weakness when the both casual viewer and the die-hard fan almost needs a proverbial scorecard to keep track of who’s who.

THE SHOW’S UNDERLYING “SMARTS” - LOST is one of the few series that isn’t afraid to show it’s intelligence or to recommend source material. Consequently I’ve been enticed enough to actually read a few of the books that have shown up here and there on the show as well as looking up some the more esoteric references. So far I’ve read “Carrie”, “The Third Policeman” as well as “A Brief History of Time” and I’ve looked up both the real John Loche and Jeremy Bentham in the encyclopedia.

THE SHOW’S MYTHOLOGY - Next to the characters and the series ongoing story the thing that keeps me returning to LOST is the show’s dense and multi-layered mythology. This is world building unlike anything that television has ever seen before. Now I don’t know how much was carefully planned out ahead of time or whether it was pieced together episode by episode but so far its worked beautifully. Of course the whole thing could fall apart by the last episode but I willing to bet that Abrams, Lindelof and Cuse are planning to give us an ending that both satisfies and works on a dramatic level.


Edited by RANDY (02/08/10 11:36 PM)

Top
#565604 - 02/08/10 09:26 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
You noted the day you first watched the show? Geez.

Just explain to me how these people don't lose weight (the women don't lose their breasts), the women keep their hair and makeup hot, and the men all keep that Don Johnson stubble thing going.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#565609 - 02/08/10 11:34 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
You noted the day you first watched the show? Geez.

Just explain to me how these people don't lose weight (the women don't lose their breasts), the women keep their hair and makeup hot, and the men all keep that Don Johnson stubble thing going.


I was just being through. Actually it's easy to remember since it's the same night that the "pilot" episode aired and that the plane crashed on the "island". At least according to the series continuity.

Top
#565613 - 02/09/10 02:06 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Quote:
My wife and I just rewatched the series through in time to pick up with season 6. It actually took us until season 5 to mentally connect first name to last name, and realize that Jack's dad's name is Christian Shephard. We felt damn foolish. Then we got a little annoyed at J.J. Abrams, because... seriously? "Christian Shephard?"

I hadn't put that together explicitly. That he puts those who follow his word in questionable circumstances adds a bit more depth to the name, don't you think?

Quote:
That being said, the show does seem to have spent the last season and a half slowly whittling away characters that aren't reducible to a great good/evil faith/reason passion/logic throwdown, either by killing them off, or just shuffling them out of the spotlight. I have a feeling the only characters I'll be rooting for by the end will be Hurley and Miles.

That's an interesting take, but I don't quite agree. Kate, Sun, Jin? The show covers a good deal of issues particularizing them to characters than just faith vs. reason. Faraday, Desmond and the two god-types cover free will vs. determinism, for example.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#565614 - 02/09/10 02:19 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MBunge]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
I think it's a good sf show with well-written characters. What the show does right (better than any other I can think of) is root its philosophical themes in character arcs, such that one can't really be divorced from the other. So, if you don't like following any of the characters (I actually like almost all of them, but a few who have already died), you probably won't stick around putting all the pieces together. The special effects are bad beyond belief, though.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#565615 - 02/09/10 02:24 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery

Just explain to me how these people don't lose weight (the women don't lose their breasts), the women keep their hair and makeup hot, and the men all keep that Don Johnson stubble thing going.
Well, it's only a 100 days "roughing it" on the beach and a food source is established. Then there's a 3 year jump. To explain all of this would take a really long post.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#565623 - 02/09/10 10:44 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
That he puts those who follow his word in questionable circumstances adds a bit more depth to the name, don't you think?


A bit more. But not much more than naming the faith-and-destiny character John Locke, or loading up crucifixion imagery on a muslim character. At a certain point, the irony blurs.

Quote:
That's an interesting take, but I don't quite agree. Kate, Sun, Jin?


Kate could go either way, and I'll be especially interested to see where the parallel airplane-Kate goes. But at least lately, her main character hasn't had much to do except look disapprovingly at Jack, and yell about Aaron.

Like I say above, I adore Sun and Jin. But I worry that their sixth season plot (at least for Island-Sun-and-Jin) will boil down to either stock joyous reunion or stock ironically tragic reunion. Jin especially didn't do much in season 5 except learn English so he could occasionally say, "What's going on, LaFleur?"

Of course the show might prove me wrong; it has before. And it certainly wouldn't be the first time they made a character unimportant for a while so it'll be a big deal when they're suddenly, surprisingly important again.

Quote:
The show covers a good deal of issues particularizing them to characters than just faith vs. reason. Faraday, Desmond and the two god-types cover free will vs. determinism, for example.


Sure, faith and reason isn't the only thing the show has going for it. But it does love its manichean battles, and free will vs. determinism would certainly fall under that category.

(I should note: I don't know why I'm arguing against the intelligence of the show, except maybe for conversation. I really do like it!)

Top
#565624 - 02/09/10 11:00 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
Originally Posted By: RANDY
Actually it's easy to remember since it's the same night that the "pilot" episode aired and that the plane crashed on the "island". At least according to the series continuity.


Watching the pilot actually loses a little of the punch it had when it first aired. If I remember right, it was the first post-9/11 media that not only didn't treat airplane crashes like a cultural third rail, but actually went out of its way to devote a good chunk of screen time to the aftermath of the crash.

When my then-girlfriend (now wife) and I watched it at the time, I remember it striking me enough that I said something like, "Wow, I, uh... guess we're doing plane crashes on TV again, huh?" Rewatching it recently, it was noticeably tamer than I remember it being.

Top
#565632 - 02/09/10 01:08 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
Well, it's only a 100 days "roughing it" on the beach and a food source is established.

Ted Nugent went only 30 days without bathing and the draft review board deferred him from going to Vietnam. He was apparently so nasty that no one wanted to give him a physical.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#565670 - 02/09/10 11:10 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
The Nuge was a draft-dodger? Ha, he doesn't bring that up on his radio show, I bet.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#565673 - 02/09/10 11:43 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Quote: "He claims that 30 days before his Draft Board Physical, he stopped all forms of personal hygiene. The last 10 days he ingested nothing but junk food and Pepsi, and a week before his physical, he stopped using the bathroom altogether, virtually living inside his pants caked with excrement and urine. That spectacle won Nugent a deferment."


Link


Quote: "Nugent has partially retracted that statement. He claims in the July 2009 issue of Texas Monthly that he did begin soiling himself a week before the physical, but he does admit to using a student deferment to stay out of Vietnam. He now claims to be "embarrassed" by his actions, and has been putting in a lot of volunteer work with the USO since 2003 to try to make up for that."

http://www.texasmonthly.com/preview/2009-07-01/feature
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#565674 - 02/09/10 11:51 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
HouseOfMisterE Offline
Member

Registered: 10/05/02
Posts: 268
Loc: Huntsville, AL
The Nuge' is an honest-to-goodness poopy pants Patriot!


Edited by HouseOfMisterE (02/09/10 11:51 PM)

Top
#565682 - 02/10/10 11:23 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: HouseOfMisterE]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
Funny story about the motorcity madman,Allen. It's surprising that such an extreme hunting and guns advocate didn't want a chance at 'the most dangerous prey'.
As for this thread's titular question,yeah,I'm still watching! Even a slightly mediocre episode like last night's is still head and shoulders above just about all other tv fare. I can't think of another series as rewarding or that could support analysis to the level Charles applies in his blog. Although we may have all jumped the gun concerning Sayid as Jacob's new vehicle. 'Claimed',huh. Obviously,the term reiterates the chess analogy used by the two demigods in their discussion on the beach,if I'm remembering right anyway. I'm hoping,and pretty sure,this season won't come down to the chosen of Jacob vs the chosen of the Nemesis and the ones with better rifles and aim win,but what would constitute a victory besides mere survival? One thing may play out. All the daddy issues so many of the characters are saddled with,I think will be represented somehow on a more cosmic scale in the outcome. Yeah,that's pretty vague,but I'm a vague sort of guy. The writers made a point of the majority of the characters having neglectful,absent,unavailable or even connivingly abusive fathers,I think it will be reflected in the demigods situation and relationship to God or at least their own existence. It does lend itself to a deus ex machina conclusion which might be needed in some aspect,but if used at all,I'm sure Lost'll do it right. Thanks for the thread,Charles,I'm looking forward to your analysis,well, almost as much as the series.

Top
#565683 - 02/10/10 11:45 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Thanks.

Quote:
Although we may have all jumped the gun concerning Sayid as Jacob's new vehicle.


Evidently.

Quote:
I'm hoping,and pretty sure,this season won't come down to the chosen of Jacob vs the chosen of the Nemesis and the ones with better rifles and aim win,but what would constitute a victory besides mere survival?


The 3rd way might be Sawyer's "fuck y'all, I've had enough," which was an extension of Faraday's bomb.

A friend and I both agree that we like what's happening on the island, but find the alt-reality stuff a little too tidy and poorly designed (so far).
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#565725 - 02/10/10 04:37 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
The alternate reality thing was probably just too tempting to pass up. After a season told chiefly in flashbacks,then a season of flashforwards,they couldn't resist a season of,as someone coined,flashsidewards. Didn't Faraday decide shortly before his mom plugged him that things in the past could be altered after all because people utilizing free will were an uncontrollable variable? It'll be interesting to see what Sawyer will do now that he's lost everything that mattered and owes allegiance to nobody. That is,if he's not saddled with Kate in short order.

Top
#566603 - 02/24/10 02:10 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
'Clairrousseau' is compellingly crazy,not sure how Jin thought it was a good idea to accompany her into a sure to be gunfight situation. Will unLocke tell Jin he is not who he appears to be? If so,he'll be doing a lot of explaining to each possible recruit.Since Claire's mentally somewhat incapacitated,he could always say that he is humoring her in some way,I suppose. But,who is the boy unLocke chases in the jungle? That's a big one,I guess. I've heard Jacob as a guess most frequently or a newly introduced intermediary figure between the light and dark,but my first thought on seeing him was that he's Aaron time jumping from 7-8 years in the future. Good episode despite being a Jack ep!

Top
#568354 - 03/17/10 11:21 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
We're being shown the human side of the Smoke Monster,but I'm amazed no one asks him/it,"so what's a smoke monster like yourself plan to do in the outside world,destroy Tokyo?"

Top
#568356 - 03/17/10 01:00 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Yeah. I suppose the biggest flaw with LOST is the lack of questions from its characters. A lot of conflict might be lessened if someone occasionally demanded answers, rather than acting first, then expecting the answer. Sayid, for example, was having a nonviolent conversation with the Japanese guy, and could've pressed him more on why he should stick a knife in Locke before giving him a chance to speak. Or how about, who is this guy who looks like Locke? What's his story? etc..

On a more positive note: I really enjoy how the characters display seemingly genuine emotions (Ben explaining his actions, Claire crying to Kate), but because of the structure of the show, we still can't completely trust what's being shown, despite wanting to.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#568388 - 03/18/10 11:54 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
All true,Charles,the characters do display a bit of 'selective ignorance' so the writers can unfold the plot when and how they want to. Along that line,do you or anyone know whether the captions of the last week's Lost episodes are canon? I watch most of those just to see what I might've missed or at least stay on point. Have to say that I liked Ben/Emerson 's performance last week better the second time I watched it. What seemed like truncated and unsupported adjustments were anything but!

Top
#568391 - 03/18/10 12:49 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
The long awaited Richard Alpert episode is coming up next week so I imagine that a lot of questions will be answered and some of the 'selective ignorance' will be taken care of. Last year I read somewhere that the captions are put together by Greg nations, the series 'keeper of knowledge'. So they are evidently considered to be canon.

Top
#568423 - 03/19/10 11:20 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
Appreciate the info on the captions,Randy! Still think some might be a tricky misdirection,but I guess time will tell and soon,only 8 left.

Top
#569300 - 04/05/10 12:46 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
6 left and the finale?

Here's my latest thinking.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#569683 - 04/12/10 01:29 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
It's kind of a goofy side-note, but Nedroid's Lost comics have been cracking me up all morning.

A few awesome ones:

http://twitpic.com/1dqx6z

http://twitpic.com/1diy19

http://twitpic.com/1c2yjn

http://twitpic.com/191r6z

And my personal favorite:

http://twitpic.com/1ajjxo

Top
#572135 - 05/23/10 10:10 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572144 - 05/24/10 01:34 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Well, that was some motherfucking weak sauce. Viewers guessed years ago that the characters all died in the crash the island was the afterlife, and Abrams said no. Lame. The music was hideous.

Cheap-ass production values, too. Looked like the costliest budget item was the fat dude's lunch. Which doesn't make much sense, considering how many commercials the show had. Five minutes of show, six minutes of commercials, etc.

Oh, and a big *FUCK YOU* to whoever slipped that Prisoner reference in there! People will not be debating Lost 45 years from now. You lame-ass posers are not in that league, and you never will be.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572157 - 05/24/10 04:35 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
I agree about the effects and production value. They've always been terrible, but given how much time was spent moving sacred corks around and what not, they were really problematic in the finale.

I think rather than religious afterlife, one reading of the ending is that it's sort of a Riverworld.

Another possible reading, which I prefer (right now) is that the whole sideways timeline was just Jack's pleasant dream at the end. The whole show wasn't a dream, just the alternate reality.

So you've got a faith vs. reason kind of breakdown at the end. I think I like that part of it. I'll be curious to see the 3 alternate endings that I missed. But, yeah, there were a lot of weak moments in the thing (just like the 6th season overall).
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572158 - 05/24/10 04:42 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
This is directed at Allen and not Charles who managed to sneak in there while I was writing my post. First off, the Island was not the afterlife. Tonight’s episode made it clear that events that happened on or off the Island happened and when a character died on or off the Island they went to the "sideways" universe which served as a sort of way station where characters gathered until they were ready to cross over to whatever existence waited for them behind the light. If you want to call that the afterlife then so be it but the island wasn't it. When Sawyer, Kate, Claire, Frank, Richard and Miles flew away in the Aljira plane they presumably went onto to live for a great many more years. That's probably why Kate told Jack that she had missed him so much. And from what Hurley and Ben said to each other outside of the church they probably wound up spending decades and decades protecting the island before they gave up the ghost.

As far as the music goes it’s obviously a matter of personal taste but I’ve always found the music on Lost to very evocative and perfectly suited to the series. And besides composer Michael Giacchino didn’t win all of those Oscar, Emmy and Grammy awards for nothing. And I’m sorry but it’s a little late to complain about the Prisoner reference since they’ve been inserting Prisoner references ever since the second season. I will agree with you about the length of the commercial breaks but to bust Lost and ABC’s chops about it when all of the other broadcast and cable networks are guilty of the same thing is a little silly. Have you tried to watch anything on AMC lately? You can practically go to McDonalds and back during one of their breaks.

Whether or not people will be debating Lost in the years to come is something that I’m willing to leave to the future where it belongs. As far as the ending goes I have to admit that I liked it with the exception of a couple of minor reservations that didn’t really mar the conclusion. I’m actually reminded of what Stephen king said to those fans who didn’t like the way he concluded his final “Dark Tower” book. He told them that they may not have liked the ending but it was only one that he had.


Edited by RANDY (05/24/10 04:48 AM)

Top
#572165 - 05/24/10 10:41 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Lawson Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/02
Posts: 11978
Loc: Lexington, Ky.
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
WWhich doesn't make much sense, considering how many commercials the show had. Five minutes of show, six minutes of commercials, etc.


Heh!

I had never watched "Lost" before, but out of curiosity last night, I kept flipping to ABC to check out the final episode that everyone was yammering about.

In a 90-minute period, I flipped over a half-dozen times at random from public television.

Every single time, I got a commercial, and then another commercial, and then I shrugged and went back to public television.

If there was an actual program buried in the commercials, it was very well hidden!

Top
#572169 - 05/24/10 11:20 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Lawson]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
I went to a friend's house and watched it on TiVo, so I didn't have to sit through the commercials. The show was around 1 hour and 45 minutes without them.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572170 - 05/24/10 11:27 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Also, I agree with Allen about the music. The bad knock-off of Morricone during the initial showdown between the 2 groups is a really bad instance. Generally, I like Giacchino's score, but it was too often used in the finale to drive the drama in with a hammer.

Originally Posted By: Randy
When Sawyer, Kate, Claire, Frank, Richard and Miles flew away in the Aljira plane they presumably went onto to live for a great many more years. That's probably why Kate told Jack that she had missed him so much. And from what Hurley and Ben said to each other outside of the church they probably wound up spending decades and decades protecting the island before they gave up the ghost.

Yeah, that's one possibility, but everyone I can think of has a lot problems. For instance, in this scenario, why was Aaron still an infant? Why no Walt? (Michael is presumedly still on the island.) And why would they live out a seemingly ordinary life in that world, but have to get switched on if they collectively created it (as Christian said)?

The problem with my sideways timeline as a dying dream theory is that Desmond and Juliet clearly had visions of it.

Of course, the island is an agent in all this, which should be taken into account.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572171 - 05/24/10 11:36 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
I'll be curious to see the 3 alternate endings that I missed.

The alternate endings were a joke. Seriously. The first one, the guy from Survivor shows up and Sayid is voted off the island. The second was another plane crash, like Seinfeld. And lastly, it was all a dream in Bob Newhart's bedroom.

When Mark Evanier predicts your jokes, you know you're scraping.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572172 - 05/24/10 11:37 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Lawson Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/02
Posts: 11978
Loc: Lexington, Ky.
Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
I went to a friend's house and watched it on TiVo, so I didn't have to sit through the commercials. The show was around 1 hour and 45 minutes without them.


And it was a two-and-a-half-hour extravaganza?

So 30 percent of the broadcast was commercials.

Man! Television really is the way to get the sheep willingly to sit through Burger King, Chrysler and Stayfree Maxi Pads advertisements.

Top
#572173 - 05/24/10 11:39 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Yep, I saw them online. I was confused, because there were 4 endings filmed for the finale, so that the actors and crew wouldn't know what the actual ending was going to be.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572174 - 05/24/10 11:53 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: RANDY
If you want to call that the afterlife then so be it but the island wasn't it.

The final shot was the airplane still on the island, broken into a million pieces and grown over with vegetation. Not in one piece, and definitely not flyable.

Also, if they could have just backed out and flown away, why did this series last so long?


Originally Posted By: RANDY
As far as the music goes it’s obviously a matter of personal taste but I’ve always found the music on Lost to very evocative and perfectly suited to the series.

If it was always that bad... well, I don't like most Spielberg pictures for the same reason.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572175 - 05/24/10 12:02 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Quote:
The final shot was the airplane still on the island, broken into a million pieces and grown over with vegetation. Not in one piece, and definitely not flyable.


What are your reading from this? I thought it was just something to put the credits over, not part of the narrative. Jack saw a plane successfully flying overhead just before he died.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572176 - 05/24/10 12:59 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
That the whole thing was taking place in dreamland. In reality, they all died in the crash. Otherwise, what was all that debris?
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572177 - 05/24/10 12:59 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
MBunge Offline
Member

Registered: 07/19/01
Posts: 3386
Loc: Waterloo, Iowa, United States
The LOST guys appear to have created one of the greatest series finales ever. It gave most fans the emotionally satisfying ending they wanted AND it gave most critics the confirmation they wanted that much of the show didn't make sense and really was pulled out of the creators' butts.

Mike

Top
#572178 - 05/24/10 02:19 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: RANDY
And besides composer Michael Giacchino didn’t win all of those Oscar, Emmy and Grammy awards for nothing.

Eminem won an Oscar. So... your point?

Giacchino directed the band on Kimmel's show afterwards and was playing a ukulele. The particular uke he was playing is manufactured by a company called Flea Market Music and the model's name is the Fluke.

http://www.fleamarketmusic.com/store/scripts/prodList.asp?idCategory=5

Whether that means anything or not.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572179 - 05/24/10 02:26 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MBunge]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: MBunge
the emotionally satisfying ending

Kimmel did a montage of the "tender moments" which started out with all the close-up kissing scenes, then threw in some face-punching scenes for comedic effect. Then it went back to the hugging and kissing, then more kicking and punching, back-and-forth. I felt like I had just re-watched the finale.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572181 - 05/24/10 02:40 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
Allen, I don't know how much you've been watching of Lost but I think that you may be confused about the planes. The wreckage on the beach is from Oceanic Flight 815, which broke up over the island in the original pilot. The plane that Frank, Miles, Richard and the rest took off in was Aljira Flight 316, which was the plane that the Oceanic 6 (or is it Oceanic 5 without Aaron?) used to return to the Island during season 5. That plane landed on the Other's runway pretty much in one piece. As for the plane that Jack saw at the end I'm assuming that it was the Aljira plane successfully taking Frank, Richard, Miles, Kate, Claire and Sawyer back to the real world.

Top
#572182 - 05/24/10 02:49 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Oh, okay. There were two planes then. This was only the second episode I'd watched.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572183 - 05/24/10 02:52 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
I don't recall the finale of M.A.S.H. being very difficult to understand.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572184 - 05/24/10 03:08 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Whoever this guy is, he does pretty good reviews:

http://www.imdb.com/user/ur6643014/comments
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572189 - 05/24/10 06:37 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Peter Urkowitz Offline
Member

Registered: 08/28/00
Posts: 3231
Loc: Salem, MA, USA
I still haven't seen any episodes of Lost, but I'm sure I'll get it on DVD or download someday.

My friends who do watch it were ambivialent about the finale, but they LOVED the commercials for Target that ran during the braodcast. In one, a pig runs through the jungle, and then we see the onscreen words: "Barbecue Sauce $2.39." In another, we see the Smoke Monster on the beach, and then the words "Smoke Detector $7.99." So that was entertaining, at least.

Top
#572220 - 05/25/10 11:33 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
Also, if they could have just backed out and flown away, why did this series last so long?


Jacob, the mystic god-thing that ran the island, was keeping people from leaving. Even if people somehow managed to get off the island, it would keep fucking with their heads and they'd be drawn back. (Six of them do escape at one point, and they all wind up being forced to come back.)

Jacob died at the end of season 5, and once Jack took over in the next-to-last episode, Jacob's rules were all lifted from the island. (As we see with Richard suddenly having his first grey hair... Richard was Jacob's assistant, and Jacob made him immortal. Once Jacob's influence stopped, Richard started aging again.)

Top
#572221 - 05/25/10 11:48 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Lawson Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/02
Posts: 11978
Loc: Lexington, Ky.
This is like watching a debate among Talmudic scholars.

Top
#572222 - 05/25/10 11:51 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Lawson]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
I'm surprised superhero fans would have any trouble with the premise, actually. Plane crashes. Survivors get fucked with by magic guy who has magic powers. Because magic guy wants one of them to take over for him.

Also: polar bears and time travel.

Top
#572223 - 05/25/10 12:07 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Lawson Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/02
Posts: 11978
Loc: Lexington, Ky.
Originally Posted By: Dan Carroll
I'm surprised superhero fans would have any trouble with the premise, actually.


I don't watch much television anymore because I just don't have the time. So a weekly serial program that went on for so many years wasn't going to be my thing, regardless. I considered tuning in for an episode during the second season, but by then, I was told, it was far, far, far too late to join the story in progress.

Top
#572230 - 05/25/10 01:54 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Lawson]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
Yeah, it's not one to watch if you don't want to start from word one.

Either way, I'm going to miss those Lost comics far more than I will the show.

http://twitpic.com/1p13ng

Top
#572242 - 05/25/10 07:32 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Lawson]
MBunge Offline
Member

Registered: 07/19/01
Posts: 3386
Loc: Waterloo, Iowa, United States
Originally Posted By: Lawson
[quote=Dan Carroll]I considered tuning in for an episode during the second season, but by then, I was told, it was far, far, far too late to join the story in progress.



And yet, the finale showed that all the stuff new viewers supposedly couldn't keep track of was mostly BS that was just there to fill up space during the episodes.

Mike

Top
#572243 - 05/25/10 07:57 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MBunge]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: Dan Carroll
I'm surprised superhero fans would have any trouble with the premise, actually.

I don't have a problem with the premise. I have a problem with the soap operatic format's lack of interest in and adherence to the premise. I wanted to see a story about people surviving on an island, sort of a more serious version of Gilligan's Island. Instead I got a bunch of pointless flashbacks and "mysterious" mumbo-jumbo that was never answered. It really was the equivalent of the "Who shot JR?" episode of Dallas, but every episode. When a character stands there for five minutes and says, "I don't understand...," while another character or characters is smiling graciously, the writers don't have a fucking clue what they're doing.


I've been asking around to see how people reacted to the finale. Turns out, I don't know anybody who watched Lost. Some said their girlfriends, wives or daughters did, though. Very strange.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572245 - 05/25/10 08:29 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Peter Urkowitz Offline
Member

Registered: 08/28/00
Posts: 3231
Loc: Salem, MA, USA
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
I wanted to see a story about people surviving on an island, sort of a more serious version of Gilligan's Island. Instead I got a bunch of pointless flashbacks and "mysterious" mumbo-jumbo that was never answered.

Okay, so it wasn't what you were expecting, but how is that the show's fault? Lots of stories appear to be one thing starting out and then upend our expectations as we get deeper into them.

Your other complaints about the quality may still hold, but I'm sure fans of the show would say you didn't give it enough of a chance. Not that you are obliged to do so, of course. If it's not for you, then no reason for you to waste time on it. But you're not really in a good position to tell all the fans that they were wrong, after they got years of enjoyment out of it.

Top
#572255 - 05/25/10 09:40 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
I wanted to see a story about people surviving on an island, sort of a more serious version of Gilligan's Island.


I would have liked to see a show about Evangeline Lilly and Emilie de Ravin stranded on a desert island, and deciding to pass the time with lots of sex.

The writers didn't tailor the premise of the show specifically to me either. But, we make the best of life with what we have.

Quote:
I've been asking around to see how people reacted to the finale. Turns out, I don't know anybody who watched Lost. Some said their girlfriends, wives or daughters did, though. Very strange.


Not really surprising. For every attractive woman on that show, there's about three or four insanely handsome men.

Top
#572266 - 05/25/10 11:38 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Peter Urkowitz]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: Peter Urkowitz
But you're not really in a good position to tell all the fans that they were wrong, after they got years of enjoyment out of it.

Ever since the switch to digital over-the-air signal, I don't even have a functioning television in my house. The only things I watched before that were SNL, the Sunday morning talk shows and 60 Minutes. There really isn't anything on TV worth watching. That millions of people still do says quite a lot. And none of it nice.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572267 - 05/25/10 11:39 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: Dan Carroll
For every attractive woman on that show, there's about three or four insanely handsome men.

Which goes back to my earlier question about how they maintain themselves in such an environment.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572287 - 05/26/10 08:01 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
Originally Posted By: Dan Carroll
For every attractive woman on that show, there's about three or four insanely handsome men.

Which goes back to my earlier question about how they maintain themselves in such an environment.


Just keep in mind that the first 101 days on the island were spread out over the first four seasons. I could probably go into detail and explain the myriad of ways that the Losties had access to food, shelter, fresh water, and even electricity but I wouldn't want to spoil it for anyone who wants to watch Lost in the future. Suffice to say that after the first week or so nobody was really starving all that much.

Top
#572291 - 05/26/10 11:48 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
and Charlie found that magical peanut butter jar.

Top
#572329 - 05/26/10 09:27 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
I'm sure Allen and Lawson will get a kick out of this. Today ABC told the LA Times that the footage of the 815 wreckage that ran during the end credits was not part of the story and that nobody connected with Lost and/or Bad Robot had anything to do with it. They stated something to the effect that they wanted something soothing for viewers to watch before stations cut to their local news. In any case it backfired and Lost fans everywhere started to hypothesize that flight 815 had crashed with no survivors and that this was actually one of Cuse and Lindelof's infamous "easter eggs". For more than two days now all of the Lost websites have been running hot with various theories and counter-theories explaining what the wreckage really meant. The fact that ABC felt that they had to do a press release about it is testament to how obsessive some Lost fans can be. God only knows that I love the show and the Lost online community in which I've struck up a few friendships but maybe it's time to move on.

Top
#572345 - 05/27/10 08:13 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
A plane wreckage is "soothing?"
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572349 - 05/27/10 11:25 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Originally Posted By: RANDY
I'm sure Allen and Lawson will get a kick out of this. Today ABC told the LA Times that the footage of the 815 wreckage that ran during the end credits was not part of the story and that nobody connected with Lost and/or Bad Robot had anything to do with it. They stated something to the effect that they wanted something soothing for viewers to watch before stations cut to their local news. In any case it backfired and Lost fans everywhere started to hypothesize that flight 815 had crashed with no survivors and that this was actually one of Cuse and Lindelof's infamous "easter eggs". For more than two days now all of the Lost websites have been running hot with various theories and counter-theories explaining what the wreckage really meant. The fact that ABC felt that they had to do a press release about it is testament to how obsessive some Lost fans can be. God only knows that I love the show and the Lost online community in which I've struck up a few friendships but maybe it's time to move on.


I'm not sure you have to be a Lost fanatic for that, take the interpretations of the wreckage in credit sequence from this thread:

Lost fan: "I thought it was just something to put the credits over, not part of the narrative."

Not a Lost fan: "That the whole thing was taking place in dreamland. In reality, they all died in the crash. Otherwise, what was all that debris?"
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#572350 - 05/27/10 12:01 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Lawson Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/02
Posts: 11978
Loc: Lexington, Ky.
You have to be a Lost fanatic to be arguing about it with people days later.

Top
#572367 - 05/27/10 08:35 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
I'm not sure you have to be a Lost fanatic for that, take the interpretations of the wreckage in credit sequence from this thread:

I agree. People who actually watched that show for six years have likely been conditioned out of expecting (or understanding) a linear presentation of imagery-as-narrative.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#572765 - 06/03/10 08:29 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Stephen Parkes Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 390
Loc: The Bristol, Cuba St
Originally Posted By: Allen Montgomery
Also, if they could have just backed out and flown away...


I'm generally in agreement with Charles' view of the finale, as expounded on his blog. But I have been swayed to a slightly more sympathetic view of whether Lost has appropriately "answered" the various questions/problems that it has put forward. Case in point: I was reading another discussion where someone mocked the final for showing the survivors as being able to just take off in a plane using a beach as a runway. Another poster pointed out that it wasn't a beach, but an island runway similar to those often used in WW2, but he had no idea how it magically appeared. Then another person commented that Kate and Sawyer were set runway building duties in season 3 while prisoners of The Others.

Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
Generally, I like Giacchino's score, but it was too often used in the finale to drive the drama in with a hammer.


I thought it was a very good score overall. I agree that it wasn't used well in the final tho'.

Originally Posted By: Dan Carroll
For every attractive woman on that show, there's about three or four insanely handsome men.


Sexiest men.

Sexiest women .

Discuss.

Top
#572800 - 06/04/10 10:31 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Stephen Parkes]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
I have to remember to not show my wife that list. She'd get angry with the computer for not listing Richard as #1, with several exclamation points after his name.

Top
#572812 - 06/05/10 03:28 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Stephen Parkes Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 390
Loc: The Bristol, Cuba St
I was surprised to see Jacob so high up the list, but I guess he is good looking.

I had forgotten about Naomi, but yeah she's hot. Juliet's okay but shouldn't have ranked quite so high on the list.

I'd really like to see Sun under Kate...

Top
#572881 - 06/07/10 02:03 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Stephen Parkes]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
Originally Posted By: Stephen Parkes
I'd really like to see Sun under Kate...


Who wouldn't?

(Ba-dum-chh)

Top
#572896 - 06/08/10 01:32 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Note to Dumas: insult Lost and Reece disappears!
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#573068 - 06/10/10 02:03 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Reece went to Texas, where the internet isn't allowed.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#573072 - 06/10/10 07:49 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
So you're saying the insulting Lost thing doesn't work, then.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#573086 - 06/10/10 10:33 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Well, my trip interrupted my commentary, but no one here's any more negative than I was.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#573300 - 06/13/10 05:42 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Time to find something new to watch.

Season finale tonight, so Season 3 will probably hit DVD this fall. Great time to get caught up with Seasons 1 and 2, both of which are readily available on DVD, Blu-Ray, and floating around the internet. The show started strong in Season 1 and has hit new plateaus of television artistry this year with Season 3. Best show on TV right now. Best show I've ever seen on TV period, really.

K



Top
#573303 - 06/13/10 07:38 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
RANDY Offline
Member

Registered: 05/12/00
Posts: 2343
Loc: U.S.A.
Although I wasn't sure about Breaking Bad at first I've since come to appreciate the shows writing and acting as well as it's plot twists. It always manages to surprise me on a consistent basis. FX's Justified, which just wrapped up it's first season, is also a welcome addition to the television landscape. It's based on the work of Elmore Leonard and the shows writers actually manage to write dialogue that sounds like it was written by Leonard himself, which is saying something.

Top
#573310 - 06/13/10 09:01 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: RANDY]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Justified ain't great, but the character actors (many coming from Deadwood) are. It's entertaining enough.

I couldn't get into Breaking Bad. Weeds is funnier.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#573351 - 06/14/10 05:11 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Stephen Parkes Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 390
Loc: The Bristol, Cuba St
The few times I watched Weeds I found it reasonably entertaining but for some reason not in the least bit gripping or involving. I watch too much tv as it is, so I gave up on it.

Originally Posted By: madget
Best show I've ever seen on TV period, really.


I have read and heard a lot of good comments about this show. (It's exec producer/creator, Vince Gilligan, wrote some of the better episodes of The X-Files, back in the day.) I may give it a try.

Top
#573363 - 06/14/10 09:09 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Stephen Parkes]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
You should check it out, Stephen; I bet you like it. Reece is crazy; it's the best thing on television, period. One of the funniest, too, even if it's not primarily a comedy.

K

Top
#573481 - 06/15/10 11:15 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
To me, it can't be taken as a drama, and it's not funny or surreal enough to work in any other way. I stopped with that Mexican druglord -- he was just too much the cliche. Weeds had a similar character, but gave him more of a personality. All of my friends love the show, though, so that probably makes me right.

My final post on Lost.

_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#573482 - 06/15/10 11:38 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
Dan Carroll Offline
Member

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 4588
Loc: Chicago, IL
My wife and I are midway through season 5 of Weeds, and it gets a big thumbs-up. It's a little offputting that they kind of take the premise and pitch it out the window at the end of season 3, but it stays entertaining, so whatever.

(That being said, it does take a while to get going again in season 4. But yeah, once said Mexican druglord shows up, that's where it gets good again.)

Top
#573632 - 06/17/10 07:50 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Dan Carroll]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Charles: call it a doubt-ridden, guilt-saturated fantasy story, if it’ll make you feel better. I don't see the show's uncategorizability as a problem, the way you do. On the contrary it's part of the appeal.

And Tuco was loads of fun!

K

Top
#573973 - 06/29/10 12:00 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Man, I gave Weeds a chance earlier tonight; different strokes, I guess. It's so cheeky and forced and self-congratulatingly topical. I don't get the appeal. The "clever" dialogue was driving me nuts. Wasn't funny at all.

K

Top
#573974 - 06/29/10 01:56 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
It ain't great, for sure, but I guess I must like it, since I keep watching.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#573998 - 06/29/10 11:09 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
MightyQuin Offline
Member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 1069
Loc: Tallahassee,FL
Since the thread's opened a bit to non-Lost shows,a reminder that 'Rescue Me' returns 10:00 on FX tonite. Very little promo,it really sneaked up on me this time.

Top
#590332 - 09/03/11 04:16 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: MightyQuin]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
So a year after the fact I finally got around to watching through this show, courtesy of Netflix. First couple seasons were cheesy but pretty compulsive viewing nonetheless, and I was more or less entertained -- and unquestionably addicted, despite myself -- through probably Season 3-ish. Beyond that, boy does that show get fucking tiresome. But with all the episodes right there to click on and 3 seasons invested into the increasingly arbitrary-seeming story, I plugged on through the rest.

Charles' commentary was pretty interesting; and I never, ever would've pegged Jacob as the hitman from Mulholland Dr. Good catch! I did of course spot the Denny's dream-guy from Mulholland Dr., as "Le Fleur's" assistant in Dharmaville. Also never caught your Blood Meridian quote since I hadn't read your LOST posts before now. While I haven't put the level of thought and knowledge into the show you obviously have, I had trouble giving the show's avoidance of the expected thematic "easy outs" in the final three seasons as much credit as you did, although I did notice them. I liked them, for example, leaving it open that John Locke was, perhaps, just an unfortunate sucker, in the grand scheme of things, and the extent to which they played with that idea. But most of the convolutions of narrative in whatever form beyond Season 2 or so just struck me as a series of increasingly cheap ploys to keep that lost sense of mystery artificially going, rather than a deliberative philosophical virtue. Typical TV show bullshit. Unlike in the earliest seasons, it took on the feel of something they were making up as they went, and they were more concerned with creating a new "oh my Gosh!" twist/cliffhanger for every episode than with driving anything towards coherence -- narrative, philosophical, or otherwise. It just became a soggy soup of nonsense that assumed the audience wouldn't know the difference between constructing a forward-moving mystery and the writers just throwing out whatever arbitrary nonsense they could dream up for that week that would keep pushing the "Mystery! Suspense! Expect the Unexpected!" button. You draw some comparisons to Lynch's work, Twin Peaks especially, but I can't really see why one would put the LOST scribblers in anything approaching the same category creatively. They just ain't at that level.

I'm glad to be done. If you could create a visual map of this show's lost plot threads, unintentional red herrings, general tonal missteps, arbitrary shifts in characterization, needless redundancies, etc. -- that'd be something to see. It seemed to me the creators/writers of LOST were big Stephen King fans -- King's work is referenced many times -- and that seems about right to me. LOST feels like the TV equivalent of an 'eh' King novel. Great at hooking you in and setting up interesting questions, but sort of lost when it comes to knowing quite where to take any of it.

As to sexist women -- and yeah, though I'm not always a huge stickler on these issues, it did frequently aggravate me how nobody on the island ever degenerates to anything less than nearly supermodel-esque, save for the cheesy-ass "I'm crazy jungle woman!" get-ups of Rousseau (who still had perfect teeth) and the late Claire -- I probably go for Shannon on pure superficial hots, Sun on general beauty; Juliet had a weird sort of sex appeal to me, but Kate on the other hand -- despite being undeniably physically beautiful -- never really rang my bell. I was digging on the young Dharmaville version of Eloise a bit though, and Rousseau's daughter was gorgeous. They leave her off the list because she was 15 at the time? She looked about 30 to me for some reason. She has a weird look.

Sexiest men -- as incredibly gay as it is for me to opine here, I give my definitive vote to Sawyer, cheesy half-beard, blonde highlights and all. He's cornballish, but that's a good looking man. Boone would be right behind him, and Richard stuck out as being noticeably handsome, despite that weird-ass black eyeliner he always seemed to have on. None of the others really registered enough for the gay part of my brain to kick into much of an evaluation. I was surprised to see Desmond top that list?

K

Top
#590347 - 09/03/11 03:07 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Well, it's been awhile (and, man, did I write a lot about that show!), but I think that, contrary to the sort of reverse-engineering/ad hoc possible explanation for how the show progressed from one season to the next, there was enough structure in place that the final season could've wrapped it all up in a narratively coherent package. Maybe it didn't matter, but Vaughan left before the 6th season, and he wrote some of the best episodes (I forget which now, but he did). I suspect that a lot of the direction of that season was in the heavy hands of the showrunners, who weren't as responsible for all the structural elements that had been set in place. It would be interesting to hear all the writers' views on how the show wound up. Anyway, Lindelof and Cruse were so committed to having everything unpredictable that they fucked over attentive viewers by making it impossible for them to guess anything about the outcome. A good mystery contains elements that lead to the conclusion, which the audience may or may not pick up on as they're going along. Those elements were almost completely dumped to keep us guessing up to the end. That's just bad storytelling.

I do still stand behind my view that Jack's story is one of the finest (if not the finest) character arcs ever on TV. I just don't know if I'll ever be able to rewatch the series again the way I revisit Twin Peaks or Deadwood, because the resolution sucks so much.

As for the Twin Peaks comparison, I definitely wouldn't put Lost in that category of greatness, but I do think it raises just as many philosophically interesting questions (and its characters are more fully realized or realistically grounded).
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#590368 - 09/04/11 02:34 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Quote:
I do still stand behind my view that Jack's story is one of the finest (if not the finest) character arcs ever on TV. I just don't know if I'll ever be able to rewatch the series again the way I revisit Twin Peaks or Deadwood, because the resolution sucks so much.


Hmm. I don't see it. I mean, I thought Jack a solid enough character generally speaking, but post-leaving-the-island Jack didn't really ring true to me anymore. Like with the show in general, I felt like his characterization became sort of increasingly arbitrary after the first half. I was never really clear on the rhyme or reason of the transitions from one Jack to the next, post-leaving-the-island. Why'd he so badly need to go back again, according to the logic of the show? Nor could I make any particular sense of his decisions, motivations, or actions after returning, in the final season. And really, I suppose by that point I didn't feel there was much sense worth making of them...

K

Top
#591106 - 09/24/11 11:05 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
Stephen Parkes Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 390
Loc: The Bristol, Cuba St
I thought season 2 the weakest, apart from maybe the last. In hindsight, it's obvious that all that tail end second group stuff was a filler option, as pretty much none of it was ever really tied into the overall narrative. The thing is, even upon first watch, I felt that that was the case - it just reeked of filler. I almost gave up on watching it at that stage, but it managed to draw me back in by the end of season three.

Originally Posted By: Charles Reece
Maybe it didn't matter, but Vaughan left before the 6th season, and he wrote some of the best episodes (I forget which now, but he did).


I mentioned that somewhere here (maybe earlier this thread). He wrote one in season five with a lot of unLock talking with Ben that was really good. And some of the best from earlier seasons too. It isn't the only TV show where some of the more capable writers on the staff weren't ultimately in charge of the overall direction. (For example, the X-Files best episodes were usually written by people other than Carter or his main showrunners.)


Edited by Stephen Parkes (09/25/11 02:05 AM)

Top
#591110 - 09/25/11 02:29 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Stephen Parkes]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
S'true about the tail end section in Season 2, and your point is reinforced by the fact that all of those people die within a season or so and are never really brought up again, except Libby in what Charles calls the "sideways" narrative, and she's just pure sentimentality/wish-fulfillment for Hugo. I think Ana Lucia has a couple cameos but they're never anything more than that.

From what I remember though I feel like Season 2 was the season in which I was most strongly tugged along by the mystique of "the Others." We knew a little but not very much, and the introduction of Ben Linus was a lot of fun, particularly the initial string of episodes in which he poses as Henry Gale, and this was a character I enjoyed throughout the series; but like many aspects of the show, he was the most fun before you really knew much about him. I also liked the introduction of the "dark" Charlie that Locke punches, who is a little too obsessed with a baby he has very little to do with. Unfortunately like so many subplots and tonal shifts, they just kind of let that one go and it resolved itself by not being dealt with / the passing of time.

K

Top
#591134 - 09/26/11 04:15 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
Stephen Parkes Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 390
Loc: The Bristol, Cuba St
Oh yeah, good points. I forgot about some of that stuff. The intro of Ben Linus was great. Been awhile for me too.

Re: the tail end people, didn't the scientist/science teacher chap stay around? The guy who was reunited with his wife in the main group?

Top
#591137 - 09/26/11 09:09 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Stephen Parkes]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Muh ... yes, he did. I couldn't stand those two characters. His wife always seemed the most out-of-place / pointless of the front end survivors as it was.

K

Top
#591201 - 09/27/11 11:44 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Season 2 was the weakest of the good seasons. When I was rewatching them, I did however really like the episode with the young couple who got buried alive, which many hated.

Also, I finally got into Breaking Bad. I haven't changed my mind about the 1st season and particularly Tuco. Still can't stand the son. The wife's gotten more interesting, though. And the 3rd season really took off and the new one has been excellent.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#591209 - 09/27/11 03:58 PM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Yea, I noticed they have Breaking Bad on Netflix now. Having rewatched them I do think Season 1 is the weakest, although still very good. As to the son, you mean Walt Jr.? He seems a pretty minor character. He's never really bothered me but they don't do much with him either.

(MINOR SPOILERS AHEAD)

For me Seasons 2 and 3 are the high points, although I frankly found the twin brothers far more absurd than Tuco -- but, they were too much fun for me to get hung up on it. There are many great episodes/moments within those seasons, though for pure entertainment value 'One Minute' in some ways takes the cake for me. The shootout between Hank and the cartel brothers surpasses any action sequence I've ever seen in a TV show. I've rewatched that sequence quite a few times. It's an excellent little set piece. The blood doesn't really spill that often in BB but man, when it does, they make it count. Great editing, and great music/sound as always.

As to the new season, though I loved the premiere episode, I've found it a bit strangely draggy since. Not bad, but just more purely functional than previous seasons. That is until Episode 10 last week, Salud. Man. The sequence in which Gus murders everyone at the party was a thing of beauty. The moments following his emergence from the restroom on back to the poolside rival some of Tarantino's finer moments. Apparently it was the work of the same woman who directed the 'One Minute' episode.

Episode 11 (Crawl Space) -- the very latest one -- was also quite good. The closing scene of Walt breaking down into manic laughter in the crawl space could've easily been unintentionally comical and very un-Walt, but I thought they played the desperate absurdity of it just about right. Yet another instance of good work by Cranston for this show. (Another scene I always thought he handled extremely well that could've easily been botched was Jane's "accidental" death...)

Any particular favorite episodes, for you?

K

Top
#591551 - 10/04/11 11:31 AM Re: LOST: Anyone here still watching? [Re: madget]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
This review summarizes the biggest issue(s) I have with the narrative twists leading into the finale for Season 4 next week, per the latest episode 'End Times':

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/bastard-machine/breaking-bad-spoiled-bastard-ep-243218

In addition to the issues touched on there, I can say that while I usually find the characterizations on BB consistent and believable, I found it difficult to conceive that Jesse immediately jumped into assuming Walt was in any way, shape, or form responsible for what's going on with Brock. I mean, when Jesse realizes Brock may be suffering from ricin poisoning, it didn't even occur to me that Jesse might suspect Walt of anything. The obvious answer is it was an accident on Jesse's own head, or that Gus was blatantly showing Jesse how it's going to be.

As far as rushing to kill Walt goes, I guess I can forgive it as "he's emotional, and he and Walt have been fighting and at odds, and he doesn't want to believe that the guy he's now sided with is repsonsible" ... but ... mm. I'm stretching to put myself there. I can make it, but I'm not sure I can make it all the way to "this is Gus's master plan." Because it's a pretty stupid plan with little upside for Gus. Besides, doesn't Jesse show up to Walt's house unarmed? He seems to decide on the fly that Walt is reponsible, taking up Walt's own handgun to kill him, when at that point all evidence is pointing the other way.

Overall no questions have been decisively answered about the actual vehicle of the ricin to Brock or if indeed the ricin is even the true culprit for his condition, so many of the problems cited in the linked review might be resolved handily next week. But the answers currently being implied are somewhat problematic. They've really sold me on Gus's intelligence, precision, and caution -- and for him to rely on Jesse blaming Walt for an already unlikely poisoning scheme related to fairly secondary characters that the audience has minimal emotional investment in ... is just a really 'off' way to start tying things up this season, even though the episode was very suspenseful and solid in its execution. I'm also not clear on how exactly Gus/Tyrus would've pulled off the poisoning, if it's on them. I guess we'll have to see what the finale brings.

K

Top
#591552 - 10/04/11 01:01 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
(Haven't read your link, yet.)

Well, my initial take on it was that Jesse was thinking he had accidentally let the kid reach the ricin, which he was going to blame on Walt for making it to begin with. Yeah, it didn't make sense that he'd blame Walt for a more active role. But, on thinking about it, these guys are so twisted up in conspiracy at this point, with Gus' watchful eye -- it's sort of a panopticon, they don't know when he's watching or when he's not -- that Jesse is letting personal issues with Walt be contaminated with the pervasive mistrust that's in the air. The two oscillate between personal responsibility and blaming others for all their woes. That seems to be a major theme this season. In other words, I'm not sure the poisoning is supposed to be seen by the viewer as reasonable explanation. I just bet that Gus didn't actually have anything to do with it. It's not even clear that the kid has been poisoned.

I really love that scene from "Crawl Space" at the end. That was fucking tense. Done to perfection. And, yeah, I love the previous episode, too. It's hard for me to pick out a particular favorite episode, though, since what I love the most is watching Walt tell lies to others, be boxed in by reality, then tell more lies to convince himself to keep going. It gets increasingly fucked up as the show progresses. Does he really believe Gus responsible for the child's condition, or was it just a way of getting the upperhand while Jesse had a gun pointed at his head?
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#591563 - 10/04/11 04:03 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870

Quote:
I just bet that Gus didn't actually have anything to do with it. It's not even clear that the kid has been poisoned.


I think this would be the most interesting route, so I hope you're right. It would also add a little more plausibility to Gus' instincts in the garage after the hospital visit. I.e. if this is the first he's heard about any poison. Hell, maybe Gus himself now believes that poisoning the kid might be Walt's doing. And if Walt's capable of that -- queue some extra paranoia for Gus. There are numerous avenues open.

That could be interesting. But I have a feeling the show is going with Walt's rationale -- that this is all Gus's master plan. The actual mode of poisoning the kid will be glossed over or brushed off. But hopefully I'm wrong about that.

One thing I always enjoy about the show though, is that because it is following such a non-formulaic trajectory, there's always a vague sense that just about anything could happen. E.g. the otherwise placid and non-played up scene where Skyler comes out for a smoke on the patio? I was really holding my breath wondering if she might be hit by a sniper. I don't think it would have played out in a very plausible way narratively, had that happened, but I was on the edge of my seat -- the wife is the first one Gus threatens to have killed, after all. I'm not confident it's necessarily "off the table" for bad things to actually happen to Walt's loved ones, in terms of where the show is headed.

I mean Walt is, as of this point, ready to die, ready to face up to the consequences of everything to this point. And I think even the audience expects that all this ends with some Scarface-like demise for Walt. But that may be a little too easy for the makers of this show. The true nightmare for Walt would be if his family -- his original, ostensible reason for doing all this -- is picked off, while he lives on.

And to that end, I note that here, one episode away from the season finale, I have no fucking idea what Season 5 will entail. It's hard to imagine Walt bouncing back from this and resuming some kind of further progress to drug kingpin-ship. Season 4 has gone a long way in erasing any illusions I may have had by the end of Season 3 that Walt was sophisticated enough to get beyond his current threshold in the drug world. And if I'm right about that what does Season 5 contain? Aftermath of Gus's downfall, and Walt trying to conceal his involvement as Hank begins to unravel the whole scheme? Or will Season 5 still be charting this war? Maybe Gus, Walt, and Jesse will all still be alive and at odds at the end of next week. I really can't foresee the exact direction.

Re: Walt's lies -- one of my biggest disappointments throughout BB was the plane crash at the end of Season 2. Exciting as it was dramatically, and as amazing as those teaser shots of the White household and the pink bear were throughout Season 2, that plane crash was just too many perfect coincidences coming together in one cataclysmic event, and suspension of disbelief snapped for me there. I thought the show had taken a wrong turn and Season 3 would be a disaster. But they came back from that very well, and if anything made it all worthwhile, it was Walt's cringe-inducing speech in the highschool gymnasium, rationalizing the crash to himself in the context of a would-be consolation speech to hundreds of vaguely confused students. And the hilariously oblivious self-satisfaction evident as Carmen the Principal has to sort of ... get the mic away from him before he drawls on any longer.

K

Top
#591565 - 10/04/11 09:56 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
I went back to have a fresh look at that aforementioned scene this evening and Carmen the Principal has the greatest line.

Student in the auditorium, prompted to just be open with her feelings about the plane crash, taking the mic: "I just keep asking myself, 'why'? I mean, if there's a God and all ... how can he just let all those people die?"

Carmen, apologetically, gently: "Ok. Can we just ... keep it secular, honey?"

K

Top
#591583 - 10/05/11 12:26 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Haha, yeah, Walt's speech about getting comfort from the statistics is one of my favorite moments. It was that moment that I became really committed to the show. The plane crash was sort of surreal, as was the absurdism of the brothers. (Tuco was just a bad movie cliche.) The narrative serendipity of the crash came across as comical, but not really believable. At first, I found it problematic, but I sort of readjusted what I thought the show was going for, dropping some of my expectation for dramatic realism. What bugged me most about the second season was the entirely predictable relationship that Jesse had with the goth neighbor. The plane crash sort of justified the tedium of that in the end, I felt.

Isn't the show replete with coincidences? Walt's brother-in-law is DEA, investigating a fast-food king who is Walt's illegal employer, Gus, who has all these connections to the local DEA and came up under the guy Walt and Jesse fucked over in the first season, which has pretty much driven the narrative through the whole series. I guess I'm seeing the narrative as artificial with realistic characterizations within that constructed microcosm.

And your observations about my reading of the poisoning make me hope that I read it right and they go with Gus' innocence. But based on all the pervasive causality of the show (which I was calling coincidences above), you might be right.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#591608 - 10/05/11 07:51 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
I think the biggest problem -- and this especially stood out to me rewatching a few key scenes again -- is that unless Walt's rationale about the poisoning is the correct one, well ....

Where, then, is the cigarette?

I think the audience understands that Walt had nothing to do with it and it would be too far out of character if the show tried to suggest otherwise. Brock could not have taken it by accident, as Jesse explains with pretty irrefutable reasoning when he confronts Walt about it. The only other possibility in the timeframe posed by the show, at least that I can see, is that it was lifted by Tyrus or someone at the lab while Jesse worked.

I guess they could pull a "Jesse was just confused, he accidentally left it in the old pack and had a brain fart," or that he dropped it or something, but I really doubt it. First because it'd be fairly lame, and second because Jesse was clearly very certain of himself as to the location of the cigarette until it just suddenly wasn't there.

And that makes the "Brock wasn't poisoned, despite how it looks" scenario less likely as well. Because let's say Brock wasn't poisoned, and it's something else. The question remains:

Where, then, is the cigarette?

The only thing I see to suggest that there may be an alternative explanation to Walt's reckoning of it, is the scene between Gus and Jesse at the hospital and Gus' actions in the parking lot afterwards. They do play those scenes with notable and impenetrable ambiguity. Having rewatched them, I can buy, based on how it plays, that this may really be the first Gus is hearing about any poison. But, I can't foresee how they then explain the disappearance of the cigarette.

They either have a pretty interesting trick up their sleeves, or I'm reading too much into the ambiguity of those last few minutes -- I'm leaning towards the latter because I've read too much into previous things in BB that weren't really intended to be read into so much. (Like many, I initially thought they had left open the possibility that Jesse had turned the gun away from Gale at the last moment; I also had what proved to be an embarassingly unfounded idea that the warning call placed to Hank about the two brothers coming to kill him wasn't made by Gus, but by the white moustached DEA boss, who I imagined to somehow be in cahoots with Gus, because I could swear I recognized the slightly garbled voice that makes the call as his).

K

Top
#591609 - 10/05/11 07:52 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Anyway, that aside - although I enjoyed Tuco, myself, I can certainly appreciate your point about upping the surrealistic quality of the show during Season 3. (It's part of why I chose the 'Kafkaesque' promo when I posted those a while back. Most of the promos for Season 4 were overbaked melodrama, and that was the only promo that highlighted the subtle but increasingly comic surrealism of the overall picture being painted by the show. Leaving aside whether or not 'kafkaesque' fully applies, the characters are trapped in an increasingly bizarre micro-universe, but when an outside entity observes that strangeness -- "Sounds kind of Kafkaesque" -- the characters themselves don't understand what is meant by the observation -- "Yeah ... uh ... *totally* Kafka-esque.") It's easy to brush it off as Jesse's doofiness, but I loved that joke.

I feel like the first time I felt that tone creep in and begin to stir the pot a little was with the fake spanish music video about Heisenberg that opened one of the mid-Season 2 episodes. The show had occasionally veered into comic weirdness, but not to that degree. The music video wasn't a flash forward, or back, as was the usual for the show openers; it wasn't something that even actually existed. It was more like some kind of wild, self-referential dream-sequence. And an upbeat, musical one at that. I didn't like it when I first saw it, but appreciated it greatly in retrospect.

Around the same time (I think) there was an opening showing Gus's distribution system through Los Pollos Hermanos, with this weird, clucky sort of "chicken music" throughout (I think the guy who scores this show is brilliant, incidentally); and sometime thereafter, a flashback with Theo where Gus is referenced sneeringly as "this ... Chicken Man." To date, I think of Gus as "the Chicken Man." There is unquestionably something very intentionally absurd and comical about this in many ways truly fearsome character being surrounded and contextualized by cartoonish chicken imagery. When he poisoned everyone in 'Salud' and issued his battle cry to those remaining in the house, I thought to myself: "Damn -- don't fuck with the Chicken Man!" If you really think about it, it should be so stupid -- yet BB pulls it off perfectly. This bizarre quality of Gus's as a villain is heightened by the singularity of his existence. While most characters on the show are pitched in a very realistic, believable way, Gus is an isolated figure -- he has no existing family we know of, a very foggy international past, no evident sexuality or biases -- just a demand for Perfection and Professionalism in all things. He's a beautifully inscrutable, weird creation, who nevertheless does not -- unlike the twin Brothers -- upset the tonal realism that otherwise saturates most aspects of the show. ("The Wire" tried to do a character, albeit a minor one, a little bit like Gus, and failed miserably -- if you ever want to see what something like Gus would be like in less capable hands, turn there.)

Even the name is great, in long or short form. In short form it's almost like a thing unto itself. "What's a Gus?" And the longer, eloquent "Gustavo Fring" ... character names don't get any better than that. I couldn't care less about the Emmys, but I hope Giancarlo Esposito gets one for his work on this show.

All right, that's all -- sorry to carry on; like w/ McCarthy, BB is one of those things I could talk about all day.

K

Top
#591881 - 10/11/11 12:01 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Quote:
There is unquestionably something very intentionally absurd and comical about this in many ways truly fearsome character being surrounded and contextualized by cartoonish chicken imagery.


Well, there's that and the connotation of fast food to drug dealing.

Quote:
"The Wire" tried to do a character, albeit a minor one, a little bit like Gus, and failed miserably -- if you ever want to see what something like Gus would be like in less capable hands, turn there.


Brother Mouzone? I felt he was tonally wrong for that show, but I'm not sure I'd agree that the writing was less capable.

So, what about this season's resolution?

It doesn't make logistic sense how Walt could have been the poisoner does it? I loved Gus's final reaction just before the bomb went off and his walking corpse looked pretty good.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#591888 - 10/11/11 02:04 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Ah fuck. Just lost a sizable reply, summarizing my thoughts on the finale. God that's frustrating.

I thought the finale was amazing, even though I still have some quibbles; but I'll have to recap later.

As to Brother Mouzone, probably -- the guy with the bow-tie? Maybe it's less the writing, more the acting/directing. But he didn't work....

K

Top
#591919 - 10/11/11 08:51 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Jimbo Offline
Member

Registered: 07/13/01
Posts: 2751
Loc: New Zealand/Canada
I always though Brother Mouzone was on the same kind of 'level' as Omar. They didn't quite fit, like two super beings wedged into the real world. They even teamed up! Which isn't to say I didn't enjoy the crap out of it.

I don't buy it that Walt poisoned the kid, if anything Gus got the berries from Walt's back yard. But more than likely it was just a screw for the audience to go crazy over until the final season begins.
_________________________
Walla Walla Bing Bang.

Top
#591926 - 10/11/11 10:44 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Jimbo]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Yeah; I enjoyed Omar though, generally speaking. Brother Mouzone -- if he's the guy I'm thinking of -- was just plain stupid.

So, now that I have time before bed to revisit this -- the poisoning. Well, lucky (or not) for the interpreters, BB creator Vince Gilligan tends to be pretty forthcoming about unintended ambiguities in the show.

Quote:
JP: Let's start at the end. Last season you ended with a final scene that played ambiguously in a way you didn't intend it to. Did that color how you ended this season, with the zoom in on the lily of the valley plant, to say, "Walt did it"?

Vince Gilligan: A couple people have seen this already, to be honest, and have asked the question, Does that mean what I think it means? We may be in a situation all over again where it's a little more ambiguous than I perhaps intended. I think it means exactly -- to start with, I think it means exactly what it looks like it means, and I think a revelation such as one in which it turns out Walt has poisoned, or at least sickened the child to the point of being hospitalized to ensure his own survival and the survival of his family. You know, a big revelation like that is best served delicately, and the audience not hit over the head with it. So hence the way we revealed that information at that final shot, but having said that I'm already starting to sense this -- I may have screwed up and done it again.


So, let's consider that out of the way. Like it or not, Walt poisoned the kid.

Now, although I like that the explanation behind the poisoning scenario wasn’t what I thought it would be in my prior comments, I certainly have my qualms with the poisoning, as nothing revealed about it in the finale makes the overall scenario any more plausible. This reviewer feels it’s worth cutting the unlikelihood of successful delivery of the poison to Brock some slack, because, in short, A) it’s just a goddamn TV show, and B) motivationally the whole thing makes better sense now:

Quote:
As it turned out, I loved this finale, or at least most of it. More on that momentarily, but first a bit more about putting every episode under a microscope each week:

Yes, I think the writers still stretched with the poisoned berry idea. Reconstructing the chain of events and keeping in mind plausibility certainly raises some doubts. But here’s the thing – I’m fine with it. Although I only do these deconstructions for what I believe are great series, even great series cannot always be perfect. They can’t have airtight plotlines, believability, dramatic tension and crisp storytelling that unfolds like science every single time. It’s not the nature of fiction, and certainly not realistic when you’re trying to create 13 hours of television each season, strung together with the 13 you finished the season before and linking to the 13 others you’ll do the next season.

(…)

So I’m not particularly concerned that the timeline of Walt getting the berries to Brock and getting him to eat them, etc., doesn’t somehow add up. For me, the motivation did add up (but it wouldn’t have if Gus had done the poisoning). So, I’ll cut them whatever slack is needed and flog myself for jumping to conclusions last week (the nature of weekly dissection, as I’ve said). If anything, I’m more impressed by the spinning gun scene and slapping myself on the forehead for not paying more attention to Walt’s light-bulb moment when the third spin doesn’t rotate back to him like the first two but points at the Lily of the Valley plant. Gilligan and his writers put the evidence out there and did it just subtly enough to have most people miss the connection (which was likely made for those who did figure it out when the ricin storyline just didn’t make sense). In any case, points for the writers on that one.


Another review I lost track of argued that the berries were more plausible in terms of Walt’s character development; i.e. he has sunken to poisoning a child to manipulate events, but a non-lethal poison.

As far as all that goes, it seems to me like excuse-making for the show; I’m not sure what it achieves to say “eh, it’s just a TV show!” Like, yeah, we all know that. As someone interested in fiction I’m still going to be hard-wired to assess what is or isn’t working in terms of the storytelling, and how well it isn’t or isn’t achieving the narrative goals it sets for itself.

But my own quibble with the poison, post-finale, is less that it was Walt or that it was the berries or when/how exactly did Walt deliver the poison to the kid – at least that’s left for imagination to fill in, instead of defined with an onscreen scenario that didn’t work – though who knows, maybe we’ll find out more about that next season. My problem is more what all this is built on in the first place.

One, Walt’s scheme relies on too many implausible reactions/assumptions from Jesse for me to really buy it having “worked,” although I guess one could argue Walt didn’t realize Jesse would suspect him, but rather was counting on him suspecting Gus in the first place and taking care of him on his own. But from what I can gather it’s more that Walt had it planned out as it went down – at least loosely. Two, I object to the reliance on Andrea/Brock as a central plot device on which the most crucial twists of the season were hinged – especially in retrospect now, taking in the season as a whole. Because unlike most of the characters in Breaking Bad, Andrea/Brock really are reducible to being nothing more than a plot device. I don’t think any viewers feel particularly invested in them; you sort of forget about them all together until the writers realize they have to remind you they exist. Personally, I think they should’ve skipped the whole aimless subplot about Marie’s return to petty theft (they’ve revived that once or twice now, but never seem to have any place to really go with it) and given us more time with Andrea/Brock, so that when the season did conclude, maybe they would have earned a little more viewer investment in the characters.

All this said, I want to be clear that I thought the finale was terrific. The entire second half of the season, particularly episodes 10 onwards, have been terrific. I tend to have a few quibbles and plausibility problems with every season – so far it hasn’t been enough to really ruin it for me, and Season 4 is certainly no exception. I defy anyone to find a better hour of television entertainment than “Face Off.” Zombie Gus was a little much, yeah, but I loved it anyway. Gus’s reaction, his death, even everything leading up to it, the whole set piece – is indelibly etched into my memory. It deserves to and probably will go down as one of the most iconic villain death sequences in TV history.

In another Vince Gilligan interview I read after the finale, he mentioned something about how he makes all of his would-be directors study the opening scene of Once Upon a Time in the West for inspiration in their approach to the show, and that spaghetti western influence showed through to beautiful effect in “Face Off.” The music, the pacing, the camerawork … it was all superb. I was a little surprised how conclusive the episode was – probably a bit too pat, all in all – but immensely satisfying.

I particularly appreciate how diligently – and at times frustratingly – Season 4 has played against Walt’s early-season declaration that “I am the one who knocks!” By putting Walt through the wringer all season, by so thoroughly disavowing the audience the privilege of being able to share in his narcissistic delusion, the exhilaration is greatly amplified when in the end, that manifests into such a marvelously executed, if somewhat narratively unlikely, reality. The show has always been and continues to be absolutely genius in its ability to kind of have its cake and eat it too, that way. How could anyone not share in the dramatic buzz – however temporary in the long run – of the season’s wonderfully simple, to-the-point closing exchange/summary:

Skylar: Walt … what happened?
Walt: I won.

K

Top
#591928 - 10/11/11 10:53 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
A few other fun tidbits -- a few viewers have noted a recurring season-to-season motif of the "half-face" image:




Also, this.





And finally, one of my own favorite images from the last few episodes:





His teeth don't show up as well as I'd hoped there, though. The teeth are key.

Gus is defined through much of Season 4 through a sentient-seeming video camera. Walt's red binoculars played off/against this wonderfully. A great touch. They have a few good shots of them in the finale too.

K

Top
#591997 - 10/12/11 10:42 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
MBunge Offline
Member

Registered: 07/19/01
Posts: 3386
Loc: Waterloo, Iowa, United States
Originally Posted By: madget
As far as all that goes, it seems to me like excuse-making for the show

K


Excuse-making is pretty much the defining characteristic of modern criticism, whether it's of shows like Breaking Bad or comic creators like Grant Morrison. Once a piece of work trips enough cultural signifiers in the mind of the critic...BOOM! It's gets judged by a completely different, yet no less arbitrary, standard.

Mike

Top
#591999 - 10/12/11 11:55 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: MBunge]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
"It's only an X" is usually used by people who don't want to think too deeply about some pop cultural artifact, not the other way around.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#592000 - 10/12/11 12:08 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Walt let the Goth girlfriend die, now he's willing to use his old neighbor as a test subject and poison a child. If the writers had maybe shown the neighbor getting killed, they wouldn't have had to put in this implausible poisoning scenario (except as crazed suspicion on Jesse's part). The neighbor scene was great and worked perfectly. Minimally, they should've set the poisoning up better.

And the Leone-showdown in an old folks home was, indeed, masterful.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#592001 - 10/12/11 01:38 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Yeah, good point -- using the neighbor as kill-bait was hilarious, while still effectively functioning as a far more organic nuance of Walt further dipping his toe into the pool of "Evil" than the poisoning, which was over-constructed and tonally flat in comparison.

K

Top
#595803 - 02/10/12 02:20 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
Madget, our conversation has sort of continued over HU. Tarantino is part of it, too, so you'll probably find it interesting.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#595875 - 02/12/12 05:52 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
It was pretty interesting. I'm still sort of thinking about whether or not I have anything worth adding to it. In a way it's sort of pointless to discuss the issues raised with someone who only watched Season 1. A large part of the pleasure of the show is the way it continually evolves in an intelligent, challenging direction, setting its intellectual and aesthetic sights higher and higher with each subsequent season, rather than dumbing things down as its popularity grows (the usual course) and taking easy outs. In a way I do understand what irks Noah -- as I've said before, I think the show is really adept at having its cake and eating it too -- it just doesn't irk me as it does him. And I find it weird that anyone would hold up Pulp Fiction as a superior moral critique.

I enjoyed your comparison of BB, PF, and DH -- listed in descending order of how much we see of their respective protagonists in their underpants. The idea of Walt as a "bad ass" is comic to me, but more importantly, comic to the show itself. He does have his money moments, and they are a lot of fun to watch. But 95% of the show's time is spent dismantling the audience's ability to share Walt's distorted self-perception. Even in penultimate Season 4, its tagline -- "Walt is the danger" -- ends up being just as much a punchline, as the season is mostly a process of watching Walt make a bumbling fool of himself, stubbornly pretending to be in charge of his own destiny, while only really managing to lose the respect and trust of his loyal junior partner. The audience is not only privy to, but captive to, how pitifully outmatched he is, and thereby, how delusional he's become. Still, in fairness to Noah, much of the show's thrill does come -- all said and done -- from watching Walt "win," despite the odds, for the pure, visceral thrill of it. But the show doesn't give us those thrills easily -- it carefully weaves its many moral quandaries directly into them. For instance by the end of Season 4, there are moments where you are left wondering why you are rooting for Walt at all, and not Gus, or even Hank (although I think we do inherently root for Hank in a way, another interesting nuance of the show). Anyway, I don't fault the show for making Walt's victories entertaining when they happen, myself.

Of course, I still say even Season 1 is better than Lost or The Wire. It's a matter of taste, I guess: those shows, to me, are more pedantic, dry, obvious -- they feel very much like written-by-committee TV shows, albeit certainly above-average ones; BB to me is so much more intimate, psychological, and character-driven. It's more filmic, visual, and tonally unified; more spaghetti western-ish. Certainly funnier. And Walter White and Gus -- even Jesse maybe, at this point -- are far more interesting and surprising to me than any characters I remember from those other shows.

I need to check out Deadwood sometime, I keep hearing good things.

K

Top
#596003 - 02/17/12 07:36 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: madget
In a way it's sort of pointless to discuss the issues raised with someone who only watched Season 1.

That's where I'm at right now. Hoping it gets better, because it has yet to "blow my mind."
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596008 - 02/18/12 11:19 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
End of Season Two and it just turned into Donny Darko.

I actually liked the penultimate S2 episode, "Phoenix," where one girl is born and the other dies (althought he chance meet-up of their fathers in the bar was a bit far-fetched). But basically I'm very glad that my video player has a fast view mode.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596023 - 02/18/12 03:16 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Halfway through S3. The soap opera shit is killing me, and every plot point is telegraphed. I can't imagine watching this show week-to-week — it took over two years for his wife to find out about the meth money.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596027 - 02/18/12 06:24 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
This "Fly" episode is beyond retarded. Oh, god, now they're just recapping another episode. This is total filler.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596030 - 02/18/12 07:36 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
These flashbacks are totally unnecessary.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596031 - 02/18/12 08:07 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Oh, the fucking Who Shot J.R. season finale...
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596032 - 02/18/12 08:15 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Anna Gunn has put on some weight.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596033 - 02/18/12 09:11 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
There is so much padding, they could easily make this a thirty-minute program.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596034 - 02/18/12 09:25 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Do they draw the connection of Walt breathing the carwash chemicals and his cancer? Is that the fascination with buying that particular one?


Oh, we're back on the the klepto thing... filler, filler, filler...

_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596041 - 02/18/12 11:11 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
"Someone has to protect this family from the man who protects this family." Boy, I bet they thought were clever when they came up with that line.


Gotta take a break for SNL. I might watch the remaining seven eps tomorrow.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596046 - 02/19/12 12:15 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
This is award-winning television? Every plot point telegraphed; way too much soap opera filler material; the comedy part of "Dark Comedy" was completely missing (Bob Odenkirk was just straight-up comedy); the Shifting Allegiances Game was officially declared dead with Pirates of the Caribbean 3; making the "bad guy" the protagonist merely by pitting him against even badder guys is a weak formula at best.

There are just too many channels to fill, I guess. No wonder I don't watch much TV anymore.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596048 - 02/19/12 01:11 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
I think the main problem was multitude of various names in the writing and directorial credits list. I feel really bad for Peter Medak, who directed my favorite movie, The Ruling Class, in 1973, and here helmed the ATM episode.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596049 - 02/19/12 01:24 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Charles Reece Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/99
Posts: 10013
Loc: us of fuckin' a
You should get a Twitter account.
_________________________
The Gospel, wherein much Truth is written.

Top
#596051 - 02/19/12 01:36 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Charles Reece]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Nah. Someone might actually read that.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596053 - 02/19/12 02:13 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
Well, for someone who disliked the show so much, you sure ripped through those four seasons mighty quick. Not that that in itself discredits your opinion; I had a similar experience with Lost. I snorted down Lost like the TV cocaine it was, but my overall opinion of it wasn't particularly glowing.

I think "every plot point telegraphed" is the kind of criticism that's easy to toss out there about any show or movie you dislike. It sounds good, but I can't think of any television show I've seen you couldn't say the same thing about. I think BB can actually be pretty subtle in its conveyance of plot points, but it does tend towards a ponderous, syrupy quality in the manner of their transmission. Telegraphing plot points is part of what a narrative is supposed to do; I think it's more a matter of how well you're enjoying the pace and manner in which it happens.

I just plain disagree about the dark comedy comment -- I think Breaking Bad is rich with dark comedy, some explicit and some subtle, and the show's consistent funniness is a big part of what I appreciate about it.

I've no idea what the shifting allegiances comment means, and I've never seen any Pirates of the Caribbean movies, but it's difficult for me to imagine Pirates of the Caribbean 3 representing the formal "death" of any narrative convention. I mean, it's a sequel to a children's movie based on a theme park ride.

As to filler, the up and down, two-steps-forward-three-steps-back ebb and flow does get a little redundant in and of itself, but they find new things to explore about the characters and their respective situations each time it happens, and never allow themselves to get sloppy with the execution of their ideas. As an audience member I never feel taken for granted, which is a sensation I find rare when it comes to TV shows. I can understand its slow pace not appealing to everyone, but I really don't think BB is any worse in the "filler" dept. than any other critically acclaimed show I've seen. That's a pretty common symptom of TV shows given their serial nature. At least BB isn't repeating the same formula each episode. The narrative evolves and is following a clear trajectory. I think a close examination of most individual episodes of BB would reveal them to be pretty narratively tight. Each scene usually has a purpose which is important weighed against the season it's housed in as a whole. Some of the Marie and Junior stuff I would agree is extraneous, but mostly because they don't seem to have much of anywhere to go with those threads, and because they are fundamentally less interesting characters than the main cast.

"Soap opera," sorta, but I don't think there's anything wrong with that in and of itself. You could fairly call most dramatic serialized TV shows juggling a lot of characters with romantic relationships between them soap operas if you cared to, but there's a big difference between Breaking Bad and All My Children.

I do agree they could compress BB to 30 minute episodes if they really wanted to, but I really enjoy the way Breaking Bad explores its own space a little. It's so rare in a TV show. I could understand someone finding its tendency towards lingering shots, ambient tonal segues, and general unhurriedness a little tedious, but I think it compliments the setting and mood of the show very nicely, while allowing room for suspense to accumulate and creep up on you over the course of a full season. Gilligan as a student of Leone makes a lot of sense to me, the show has a very spaghetti-western flavor at times, just displaced into a very unusual context.

K

PS - Although it seems to be an unpopular episode, I liked "Fly" a lot. The metaphors couldn't be more obvious but I thought the episode functioned nicely and broke up the season in about the right place. It is so self-contained and self-referential it almost could or could not have even happened, in regards to the larger narrative. I.e. it could almost exist in the same "meta" bubble housing the Heisenberg Spanish music video, etc. None of that makes it good or bad, but I thought people were hard on it.

Top
#596054 - 02/19/12 03:25 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091


Quote:
I never started watching Lost because I couldn't be arsed with that kind of X-files mystery cock-tease, wrapped up in the tedious soap operatics of unlikable people. When the whole thing finally stopped and a lot of unsatisfied people were still scratching their heads over the unintelligible, unanswered ending, I'll admit I felt a wee bit smug.


http://ourvaluedcustomers.blogspot.com/2012/02/to-her-friend_19.html#comment-form
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596058 - 02/19/12 08:51 PM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Originally Posted By: madget
I think "every plot point telegraphed" is the kind of criticism that's easy to toss out there about any show or movie you dislike.

Goth girlfriend = drug overdose (what happened to Jesse's MILF interest?)
New girlfriend with kid and kid brother = both kids get endangered/killed
Three buddies dealing = fodder for turf war (I was expecting two out of three)
Old boss = affair
Bookkeeping errors in old boss' company = spills over into Walt's money issues
Etc., etc.

Some expected cliché's didn't pan out — Jesse's little brother was never endangered, Marie didn't have an affair with Hank's physical therapist (they re-ran the klepto stuff instead), Walt Jr. didn't pick up on the meth — so kudos for that, but others were drawn out further than they needed to be (as one example: the issue of laundering Walt's money could have been handled more simply by filtering it through Beneke, which would have made for a more interesting love triangle by not necessitating turning Beneke into a moron).


Originally Posted By: madget
It sounds good, but I can't think of any television show I've seen you couldn't say the same thing about.

My Name is Earl surprised me almost every episode.


Originally Posted By: madget
I've no idea what the shifting allegiances comment means

Constantly having to wonder who wants to kill whom and why gets old really quickly. Actually having a character say the words, "You can't/won't kill me," is only topped by that old invitation for explication, "But I don't understand," as the most hackneyed piece of dialogue ever.


_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596068 - 02/20/12 07:25 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
My favorite band, Jethro Tull, did get a favorable mention, though; and while I doubt this shot was intentional...



...I did enjoy the little shout-out to the pioneers of death metal there.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
#596069 - 02/20/12 10:05 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: Allen Montgomery]
madget Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
.

Just in case it needs to be said or on the off chance someone else is even reading: major spoilers herein.

Quote:
Goth girlfriend = drug overdose (what happened to Jesse's MILF interest?)


Jane didn't OD. Walt let her choke to death on her own vomit in her sleep, neglecting an opportunity to save her life. He does so out of a paternal instinct towards Jesse, and out of self-preservation, with an arguable dash of pure cold-blooded revenge. It's a complex soup of motivations playing into a unique situation, all transmitted without any dialogue at all.

That's a lot more interesting than a simple overdose. I'm not sure there's a better representative scene of the show's namesake, really. If one had to choose a definitive moment wherein the audience is watching Walt "break bad," I'd vote for Jane's death.

Quote:
New girlfriend with kid and kid brother = both kids get endangered/killed


I actually agree with you here. Andrea and Brock and his cousin (at least once he became known as her cousin) all felt like mere plot devices to me, one of the closest instances of BB settling for conventional TV show bullshit. Not my favorite characters, and some of the show's sketchiest, furthest-fetched scenarios revolve around them specifically.

Quote:
Three buddies dealing = fodder for turf war (I was expecting two out of three)


Well, a turf war is going to expectedly be a part of a narrative about illegal drug-dealing, yes. Didn't see a problem with this. I love the way Badger's apprehension is utilized as a way to introduce Saul. I appreciated the mix of comedy and drama in the way the turf war plays out. Walt and Jesse's ineptitude demands that unfolding events be somewhat ridiculous, but the show still conveys the gravity and danger of what is happening on the whole.

Quote:
Old boss = affair


If it wasn't going to be an old boss it would've been another character introduced for that purpose. I don't see why it being an old boss is a particular problem.

Quote:
Bookkeeping errors in old boss' company = spills over into Walt's money issues


I have a few quibbles with the mechanics of this, and I do think you raise an interesting possibility of a direction they could've gone that would negate the necessity of making Ted a moron. That said I didn't really object to this as a way to stack Skylar's own closet with a couple of minor skeletons, thereby giving her something to lose (and something to protect) as the situation evolves. To me, it played out interestingly. I have bigger problems with the way Season 4 resolves the Ted thread (too much an easy out) than with the things that led up to that point.

I also loved Walt's reaction to the affair.

Quote:
Constantly having to wonder who wants to kill whom and why gets old really quickly. Actually having a character say the words, "You can't/won't kill me," is only topped by that old invitation for explication, "But I don't understand," as the most hackneyed piece of dialogue ever.


Is there really that much ambiguity in this department? Walt's own motives tend to be a little erratic, but that's in keeping with his character and what his character is going through. Gus's seem pretty straightforward for the most part, as do the cartel's.

I only recall one instance of Walt saying "You can't kill me" -- or no, two I guess -- and they are both terrific scenes. Walt sells the sheer audacity of it. He doesn't know when to shut up, and it's part of what makes him fun.

K

Top
#596483 - 03/16/12 05:30 AM Re: Breaking Bad [Re: madget]
Allen Montgomery Offline
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7091
Just watched the first episode of The Wire. Jeezus. The writing is horrendous — besides the premise being boring, every character talks in the same smart-ass potty-mouth style. How does this garbage get such high ratings?

I doubt I'll power through this series like I did Breaking Bad. And I may have to intersperse episodes with Ingmar Bergmann films to liven things up a bit.
_________________________
"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

Top
Page 1 of 14 1 2 3 ... 13 14 >


Moderator:  Rick Veitch, Steve Conley