A few days after we (i.e., Mr. Octopus of Octopus Grigori, aka my husband) arrived in LA six weeks ago, we found ourselves in the Burbank Circuit City buying the first season of Lost on DVD. Our friends had given it a unanimous thumbs up and we needed something to distract us from the mounds of moving boxes that were waiting for us back at the new apartment. Little did we know that we would soon be sucked into these DVDs-- watching one episode after another, like kids who can't stop eating their Halloween candy, up to six episodes in a day.
Each episode was riveting, creepy, engrossing. For those who haven't seen the show, Lost begins when a transpacific flight from Sydney to Los Angeles runs a thousand miles off course and crashes on a (seemingly) deserted island in the South Pacific. About forty passengers survive. Each episode includes back story of one of the fifteen or so main characters (i.e., the doctor, the fugitive, the heroin addict, the Iraqi soldier, the beautiful siblings, the confidence man, the paralyzed guy, the Korean couple, the pregnant Aussie, the father and his son, and my current favorite, the fat guy who won the lottery with six very special numbers-- 4, 8, 15, 16, 23 and 42). Just as these are no ordinary passengers (or are they?), this is no ordinary island-- full of wild boars, a polar bear, a French scientist who has been stranded there for over sixteen years, strange sounds and even stranger "people" known as The Others. Many questions about the characters and the island remain unanswered, which is part of the thrill of watching.
Now that we have plowed through the first season, we have begun watching the second season with gusto on network TV. The second season has been disappointing, in part because of the sting of commercial interruptions, but also because the story has lost its suspense and focus on survival and rescue and getting along (oftentimes painfully) with the other surivivors. The urgent need of getting off the island and protecting themselves from The Others, two dominant themes from the first season, have given way to exploring the mysterious interior of the land. The core group of survivors has been broken apart into several groups doing different things; the loss of interaction has made the show disjointed. Lost's new direction may prove deliciously engrossing in the end, but for me it has fallen flat. And I don't think I'm alone, because the producers began hyping tomorrow's episode three weeks ago as one where one of the main characters won't survive. Gasp.
The weekly entertainment magazines that you read while waiting to check out at the grocery store have been speculating on who will go. The favorite, it seems, is Shannon, the sister half of the beautiful siblings. I put my money on her, too. She hasn't spoken in several episodes, and because her brother died last season and she put the brakes on hooking up with Sayid, the Iraqi, there's isn't much of a story line for her (I think). Sorry Shannon, I think you're getting the boot.