Lost recap: The love story of Jin and Sun -- unrequited love wrapped in an episode with few revelations
Whatever the reason, Tuesday's episode The Package continued a disappointing trend; following an episode with a deluge of revelations and backstory with one that barely budges our scenario forward.
What we do know: our lovely Korean couple Jin and Sun Kwon are star-crossed lovers no matter what reality they live in, as their unmarried counterparts in the alternate "sideways" reality where Oceanic 815 didn't crash find they were sent to America so that brutish mercenary Martin Keamy (a creepily magnetic Kevin Durand) could kill Jin for daring to sleep with his boss' daughter.
Lucky for those two that Keamy ran afoul of Sayid first, in a deadly gunfire exchange we saw from the Iraqi's perspective a few episodes ago. Not so lucky that Sun happened to stand in front of one of Keamy's henchmen while he was trying to shoot Jin -- death may separate these two in a way time and geography have divided our Kwons in our "home base" reality.
It's wonderful to see the qualities which our characters carry around no matter which reality they inhabit. We're getting to the core of these people, exposing the yearnings and values which led Jacob to bring them to the island in the first place. And the Kwon's sideways story is more evidence that a reality where Oceanic 815 didn't crash is a world most of our Losties wouldn't want to live in.
Which brings up a pressing question. If the island is at the bottom of the ocean in our sideways reality, presumably Ol' Smokey isn't on it. Why isn't our doppleganger world drowning in evil the way Jacob insists the home base reality will experience if our villainous Man In Black/Smoke Monster makes it off the island?
Last week, the surprises and revelations came in a flood, like producers couldn't wait to offload the backstory of just how long our immortal Richard Alpert has been serving Jacob and the roots of MIB's struggle to leave the island. This week's episode was stingy with that stuff, coyly dropping clues here and there like breadcrumbs to draw you through Jin and Sun's story.
But there were a few juicy tidbits left behind:
*The airplane Jacob's bodyguard took to the island is what the Smoke Monster seeks, and he needs to get all the candidates on it. I'm still a believer that he needs to kill them to leave the island, but they must choose to follow him first. I'm just hoping there isn't some climatic scene in the finale where Sawyer and Jack must agree to stay behind and become the new Jacob and Smokey; any ending you can coming see this far away just isn't worthy of Lost.
*Smokey said our intrepid Kate wasn't a candidate "anymore," leading to an interesting question: How do you drop out of candidacy to replace Jacob without dying?
*Widmore seeks to find the pockets of electromagnetic energy on the island -- which means they likely connect to Smokey's power. Lost's connection between science and the supernatural has always been an interesting one -- I'm hoping producers will finally tell us what the electromagnetic stuff has to do with beings who can change shape and grant eternal life.
*When Lost stumbles on a reasonable question it can't quite answer, humor is the last resort. That's why I loved Smokey's exchange with Sawyer, who asked why a guy who can transform himself into a cloud of deadly smoke needs to take a boat over to the island where Widmore has set up shop. Smokey never really said why that was so, but the fact that Sawyer even asked seemed to be the producers' way of telling us all - yeah, we know this doesn't make much sense either.
*We had an idea that the sonic fence first seen in a more permanent form seasons ago had a purpose beyond keeping the occasional polar bear at bay. Now we see that it's really about keeping Smokey back, as Widmore erects a portable version around his new camp.
*Learning that a drugged Desmond is the package Widmore cares so much about came as a relief -- given that his name is in the opening credits, fans have been wondering for weeks when Henry Ian Cusick was going to show again. But since he's not a candidate, it's hard to know why he would be so important to the larger struggle.
*Bad enough that ABC has a logo which covers the lower right corner of the screen at times; adding the logo for returning series V only ensured that viewers had trouble seeing a key scene where Sun writes messages on a notebook. Doesn't anybody at the network think about this stuff before they implement it?
Mostly, the Jin and Sun story in The Package felt like a pleasant distraction while producers moved a few more chess pieces in place for the grand finale. And the cool thing about Lost's current pattern; now that we got a sleepy episode out of the way, next week's installment is bound to be another barn burner.