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Lost

Lost is a drama about a group of plane crash survivors. They land on an unknown Pacific island and have to learn to live together. ABC 2004-2010

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Episode 12 - Fire + Water

6 April 2017

Present: Charlie dreams that Aaron is in danger. He has another vivid similar dream and wakes up standing in the sea holding Aaron. He asks Eko and Locke for their help. Locke tells him to leave Claire alone and Eko suggests Aaron be baptised. Locke follows Charlie to his stash of heroin and takes it from him. Charlie starts a fire to distract the camp and then grabs Aaron and tries to baptise him himself. Locke retrieves Aaron and punches him in the face. Jack and Ana Lucia continue to talk as Hurley begins to get to know Libby.

Flashback: Charlie’s brother Liam becomes a Dad but is too much of a junkie to be there for the birth. An embarrassing commercial shoot goes all wrong when Liam is too out of it to perform. Charlie tries to write new songs to reinvigorate the band. Liam sells off Charlie’s piano to pay for a ticket to Australia where he and his family can make a fresh start.

The Good: The most interesting part of this episode are the roles which Locke and Eko play. Eko seems to be taking Locke’s place in certain ways. When Charlie seeks help it is Eko who believes his dreams might mean something. While Locke seems to take it personally that Charlie has been lying and possibly using again. Charlie was Locke’s first success story (107) on the island. He was the first person who Locke helped using his new found confidence and faith. Now that Charlie has fallen it seems like Locke is angry that his work has been undone. Punching Charlie seems like Locke taking out his frustration on Charlie rather than a necessary punishment. Even Claire ends up turning to Eko for comfort and a solution to the worries which Charlie has stirred up. It seems as if Eko is taking Locke’s mantle as the “priest” of the group.

It’s nice to see Jack using a Dharma medicine bottle. The implication that the hatch is full of medical supplies makes it easier to accept the seemingly never ending medicine which Jack uses.

The Bad: Charlie’s story is a bit of a mess. It feels repetitive for a start. We once more see Liam screwing up and leaving poor Charlie in the lurch. But we have seen this story already (107). The story also lacks a clear focus or direction. Are we supposed to feel sorry for Charlie or look down on him? It’s hardly his fault that Liam is such a screw up anymore than he can be blamed for sleepwalking Aaron into the sea. However when Liam needs real help all Charlie can think of is himself and similarly he endangers everyone’s lives in order to forcibly baptise Aaron.

Charlie also continues his behaviour from two episodes ago where he lies continuously about his possession of drugs and is caught in the lie. Although we haven’t seen him use, his behaviour is so bad and so suspicious that it is difficult to feel anything positive about him. That wouldn’t be a problem if he weren’t positioned in the show as one of the good guys and a humorous character at that.

This lack of focus and clarity also affects Locke. Last episode he told Jack “who are we to tell anyone what they can or can’t do?” Yet this week he repeatedly tells Charlie what to do, including confiscating his drugs. The situation is obviously different but Michael was putting himself in arguably as much danger as Charlie is (though not other people I suppose). Locke’s decision to punch Charlie does seem completely out of character though. He has always taken a calm and non-violent attitude to confrontation (with Eko in 208, Desmond in 203, Michael in 114 and even his father in 203). Yet he now chooses to beat down Charlie despite the fact that he has given back Aaron peacefully.

Charlie’s dreams are also confusing. Most dreams or visions on Lost are clearly sent to the character by a higher power in order to achieve something. Jack seeing his father leads to the caves (105) and Locke’s dream led to finding the plane (119). Hurley did have a seemingly useless dream (204) and now it would seem Charlie’s is pointless too. The only way his dream could have a purpose is if Aaron is supposed to be baptised. But the Lost producers have no interest in endorsing Christianity, so it seems more likely that the writers have leant on the dream as a plot device. This is damaging to the show because dreams ought to mean something when they are that vivid. If it later turns out an evil force sent the dreams in order to hurt Charlie, then that at least would have some purpose.

Charlie mentions that Kate saw a horse and the he knows of Walt’s apparitions, yet he still hasn’t told anyone about the black smoke monster. There is no consistency or logic to how these revelations are handled. If Charlie knows about the visions of Walt, then shouldn’t someone have told Michael? Shouldn’t Sayid have told Michael that when he returned? And again why hasn’t Charlie mentioned the black smoke monster? If he is looking for a way to bond with Locke that would be a good place to start.

The Unknown: Did Charlie’s dreams mean anything? Does Hurley know Libby from somewhere? He was in a psychiatric institution and she was a clinical psychologist.

Best Moment: Lost’s characters have an annoying habit of not sharing with one another. So you almost have to laugh when Charlie asks Eko why he is marking trees and he replies “Because these are the ones I like.” How helpful.

The Bottom Line: Lost has become a different show. The overall plot has become more important than each characters episode this season. It has led to some disappointing episodes where the flashback and the present story failed to compliment each other as they did in season one. This is one of the worst of them. Unless the writers have something up their sleeve, this looks very much like an episode written because they had to fit in a Charlie story rather than having a real purpose. That is not a good sign.

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  • This was downright terrible.

    I agree with all of your points, this episode really disappointed me and was a clumsy mess. here is hardly any redeeming quality to this.

    Charlie's story quite literally led nowhere which was really bad. There was no resolution, it was just there in this season.

    Now I'm going to include some points I forgot to include in the past couple episodes:

    -Jin leaves him tent shirtless in What Kate Did. Could that have been the moment of Ji Yeon's conception?

    -Jack wanting to raise an army in the last episode never went anywhere which was a real disappointment. It felt like a big deal but it really wasn't.

    Viewer score: 34 / 100

    Posted by Aaronic, 05/04/2017 2:25pm (23 days ago)

  • Easily the worst episode till now. Have been trying to finish this episode for a week now. Finally gave up and read the review here.

    Viewer score: 20 / 100

    Posted by Shashank, 28/11/2016 9:22pm (5 months ago)

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