Friday, September 29, 2006

"Lost" Viewing In Progress: Do Not Disturb

Like it? 
Fair warning: Don’t call me on Wednesday night. I will yell at you — I will yell things people can’t ever take back.

“Lost,” easily the best show on television, starts Season 3 that night at 9 p.m. I am a massive dork and cannot be interrupted during even one second of its broadcast, or I will become belligerent and want to hurt myself and others. So you know.

But don’t call before 9 p.m., either. I’ll be making nachos.

If I don’t have my nachos, I can’t enjoy “Lost.” I will become belligerent and want to hurt myself and others, like I said.

And actually, don’t call afterward. I’ll be thinking about “Lost.” After a really great episode of “Lost,” I like to sit on my couch and cogitate for a while. Sometimes I say, “Wow,” or, “Hmf!” It may seem like nothing to you, but inside I’m solving the mysteries of the universe. It takes a few minutes.

Being an expert in “Lost” like this guy (I’m pointing at myself right now) is a lot of work. “Lost” is not for casual fans. I don’t want to call it complicated, but let’s just say if you find the plot of “Dancing With the Stars” hard to follow, you will probably not like “Lost.”

Getting the full “Lost” flavor means engaging in extratelevisual activities — things like research! Hours and hours of research! What’s that person saying? Oops! It’s Korean — what, you don’t know Korean? What’s up with that cool little logo that shows up everywhere? Looks like you’ll have to study the I Ching! Want to know what really happened in Season 2, Episode 14? Hope you can read Egyptian hieroglyphics!

You have to listen to at least three podcasts a week. For beginners and intermediates, there's The Lost Podcast With Jay and Jack; the more advanced watcher, LostCasts; for a dose of smarm, The Official Lost Podcast. You have to go on Internet forums, watch and rewatch episodes obsessively, slow down the footage, break out the audio editing software and reverse people’s dialogue. I mean, you could just watch the show. If you want to miss everything. Like a chump.

People who aren’t geeks like me ask if they can just “jump in.” I laugh and push imaginary hornrims up the bridge of my nose. Sorry, no. You can’t. It’s like jumping into a later season of “Three’s Company,” one of the Nurse Terry seasons, and not knowing who Jack and Janet are talking about that one time they mention Chrissy.

If you’ve never seen an episode of “Lost,” do your body a favor and catch up. The first two seasons are available on DVD. Get thee to Wal-Mart. Download them off Apple’s iTunes service. Run, do not walk, to ... OK, I was about to say “Netflix,” but you don’t have to run or walk anywhere.

Since there are just a few days left, I’ll even provide you with a cheat sheet to help decipher some of the most puzzling clues:

--

Q. I’m confused! Can you please explain the plot of the show in 10 words or less?

A. No. This is what I’m talking about — the commitment this show requires. I can do it in 11 if I leave out the articles: “Plane fall down, go boom. Island very mysterious. Oh no — monster!


Q. It seems like there are a lot of characters, aren’t there? Can you please give me a detailed—

A. Yes, there are a lot of characters! Thanks for your question!


Q. That an Arab guy?

A. Ah! That would be Sayid Jirrah, an ex-Republican Guard member from Iraq who was caught by U.S. forces including Kate the fugitive’s father (not her real father, who she killed, but her presumed real father) during the Gulf War and taught to become a torturer, and the CIA enlisted him as an undercover operative to obtain information about terrorist attacks by giving him the secret location of a woman he loves who he helped escape from Baghdad, that woman later ending up in California and getting her house inspected by John Locke, who at this time still had the use of his legs, which he lost then got back again mysteriously, so getting back to the torturer thing Sayid was taught by CIA operative Kelvin Inman, who later it turned out was the very same Kelvin who took Desmond in off the shore when he crashed his boat on the island during a round-the-world sailing race to impress billionaire financier Charles Widmore into letting him marry his daughter, Penelope, who it turns out may have located the island — and so Kelvin taught Desmond to push the button that safely disperses the electromagnetic charge that builds up in the Swan station every 108 minutes, pretty much as a ruse to get him to continue said button-pushing while he escapes on Desmond’s boat by telling Desmond that there’s a sickness which may or may not be real on the island and so he can’t leave the hatch, Kelvin at some point not yet clarified having left the CIA to join the Dharma Initiative, a group which intends to save humanity from self-destruction. But no, the actor who plays Sayid is actually Indian.


Q. Dear Dan: I think that doctor character, Jack, is one of the sexiest men on television! Sincerely, your wife.

A. That’s not a question, and no, he isn’t.


Q. I have a theory that the island is actually not an island, but in fact they’re stuck in an elaborate amusement park-type scenario. What do you think?

A. It does explain why the survivors have to wait in such long lines for the Tilt-a-Whirl.


Q. So much mystery on this island revolves around the “smoke monster” that occasionally terrorizes the survivors. Is it a dinosaur?

A. Yup.


Q. Who are these evil “Others” who live on the island?

A. Usually, the Others appear clad in filthy rags, smeared with dirt and wearing no shoes, kidnapping survivors and threatening their lives. They’re clearly West Virginian carnies operating the vast, nefarious Six Flags that is the island (see above). Why are they so upset? The crash survivors never paid admission.


Q. What storylines can we look forward to in Season 3?

A. I hope they solve the mystery of why all the men have the same short, two-day growth of stubble every day when they never seem to shave. But the big plot twist will be when the stoner (Charlie) teams up with the dog (Vincent) to solve the mystery of the entire island (haunted amusement park). It'll turn out that Mean Old Man Alvar Hanso has been masquerading as the guy who's always lugging some heavy object from one end of the beach to the other — and he would've gotten away with it, too, if it hadn't been for those snooping survivors. On that theme, the producers have said new characters will be introduced — my best guess is either a much smaller, more annoying dog, or the Harlem Globetrotters.

1 comment:

Casey D said...

this is my favorite entry so far, its the story of my life for wednesday nights...and the day after when theres a jay and jack podcast

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