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68
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72
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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

66
/100
Viewer
71
/100

Episode 13 - Hearts and Minds

8 January 2017

Present: Boone wants to tell Shannon about the hatch which he and Locke have found. Locke knocks him out and ties him up. He puts some paste on his wound and Boone hallucinates that Shannon is killed by the monster. When he discovers it wasn’t real, Locke asks how it made him feel and he says “relieved.” Hurley needs some fish in his diet and so follows Jin hoping to learn how to catch them for himself. Sun begins planting a garden and Kate discovers that she can speak English. Jack and Sayid share their suspicions about Locke.

Flashback: Shannon calls Boone and begs him to come save her from an abusive relationship in Sydney. He pays off the boyfriend but soon discovers it was a trick to get his money. When Bryan takes the money and leaves Shannon she goes running to Boone. She says she always knew that he was in love with her and they sleep together. She says things should go back to the way they were.

The Good: There are two sides to this episode, the subtle and the not so subtle.

There are a lot of subtle moments in the episode which work really well. With the focus on Boone, we get some nice smaller scenes with the other characters. Kate and Jack’s affection is back this week and they play off each other well. Kate’s dialogue which uncovers Sun’s English seems very natural and is a clever way of the truth coming out. Jin’s kindness to Hurley is also well played and reminds you that Jin can be a nice guy.

It’s very good to see some follow up on Charlie’s withdrawal, though I feel not enough has been made of such a serious issue. Sayid’s conclusion that Locke’s compass must be faulty is both very subtle and potentially fascinating. The seeming insignificance of the broken compass all but confirms to we viewers of a television show that it isn’t. The island clearly has some strange magnetic properties which could go a long way to explaining why no one can find them. Sayid’s logical science based conclusion is an interesting line for his character. Last episode we heard him denying his original claim that he heard whispers in the jungle. Suddenly it must have been the wind. It would seem Sayid is clinging to scientific explanations of the island mysteries where of course John Locke has already concluded otherwise. His claim that “we are gonna want him (Sayid) on our side” is another interesting little comment. Already Locke is planning for the day when he needs to convince people about what the island really is.

Finally before we come to Boone, I have to praise Hurley, who carries the comedy beautifully throughout. His collection of leaves for toilet paper is an obvious joke but it’s one of those little aspects of island life which no one has addressed yet. So it’s excellent that they do, again in a subtle way. But then Hurley’s scenes with Jin are really funny Trying to convince Jin to pee on him is a great visual joke but the follow up is even better (see Best Moment).

Ok so Boone. Well, Boone and Shannon. So far we have seen them relatively well characterised as rich kids. Boone has wanted to help but hasn’t known how. Shannon has avoided helping except when asked very nicely. Now we discover that he has been in love with her for a long time and that she used and manipulated him. It explains their antagonistic relationship and his seeming love-hate feelings for her. It’s a testament to how well they have been written and acted that that came across even before the flashback. Even the shot of Boone’s L.A. girlfriend (who looks like Shannon) is a nice touch. The scene where Boone gives in to drunken Shannon is very well played.

Boone’s hallucination probably fooled quite a few viewers and therefore is a dramatic spectacle. Certainly the conclusion to that story is very strong. Boone realises that he is trapped by his love for Shannon and the only way to move forward in life is to let it go. Just as Locke was set free from his wheelchair, so the island has now freed Boone. Locke is behaving a bit as if he is Jesus (for example his story about Michelangelo) before he tells Boone to “follow me.” But the imagery is clear. Locke is a daring character at this stage. For a kind of cult leader to be one of the main characters of a mainstream television show is very unusual and fascinating.

The Bad: However there is something not quite right about Boone’s story. I suppose there are just one too many questions left by his hallucination. How does Locke know how to make hallucinogenic paste? How can he justify tying Boone up in a jungle filled with boar, bears and monsters? How exactly can he be so sure that “you’re gonna thank me for this later.” It’s not too much of a stretch to imagine that Locke might have known the science of what he did. It’s not even too far to imagine the restoration of his legs has given him supreme faith in his own instincts on matters such as this. But when his plan works so perfectly, Boone comes to no harm and realises the exact thing than can set him free, the whole story loses something. It all feels too easy. As you are watching it, it seems ludicrous that Locke could have tied up Shannon and Boone so callously. When she dies there is something missing (perhaps having been burned by Charlie’s “death” in 111) which makes you not quite buy into it. In it’s totality it seems less convincing than it could be.

In the background are also my familiar complaints. Claire has been abducted and yet everyone is going about their business. No one seems terrified; no one is making a great effort to explore the island and attempt to find her.

Also the police officer who tells Boone he can’t investigate Bryan without evidence is pretty flippant and dismissive. I hope most police officers don’t treat domestic abuse cases so casually. The writers could have had the office act more professionally while still giving Boone the same answer.

The Unknown: What are the island’s magnetic properties? How does Locke know how to create hallucinogen?

Best Moment: Sitting near him Hurley looks at Jin and says “Are you sure you don’t speak English? There’s a rumour that you do.” That is a classic line because it is so plausible that such a rumour would be started in the small paranoid world in which the survivors live. “Your wife’s hot” he adds to no reaction from Jin. Great comedy and much needed comic relief in such a serious show.

The Bottom Line: There is a huge amount to like about this episode. The character development is very strong as usual, there is drama and humour and some small developments which could become much more important. However the centrepiece of the show is Boone’s hallucination and there is something missing from making it as good as it could be.

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Comments

  • This was another strong episode of Lost, proving that the last episode was just a fluke.

    Boone' story arc is very good and it is another example of the letting go theme being used. It's a good story and the hallucination has some good moments before it's actually revealed as a hallucination. I agree about the characterization of Boone and Shannon, as they were very well developed and their story is perfectly written. Though the here aren't any amazing twists, it's another great character centric story,

    The side stories were excellent as well. Hurley is very funny as usual and his story With Jin was great. I love that the writers are starting to put Jin in a more positive light by having him help Hurley, the most lovable character in the show. It works very well. Kate discovering Sun's secret was excellent as well.

    Locke is a real enigma in this season. Once more Locke delivers some excellent lines and offers some intriguing mysteries, the compass being a notable one.

    The thing that impressed me the most about this episode was the small talk and character interactions. It all felt so realistic and there were plenty of subtle details that revealed more about these characters.

    Overall, this was another great episode, continuing the excellence of this first season. Though Boone's story is somewhat overshadowed by the excellent B-stories, it's still excellently written and provided more than enough to engage the viewer.

    Viewer score: 71 / 100

    Posted by Aaronic, 07/01/2017 2:38pm (13 days ago)

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