Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Lost 6.10 "The Package"

A quick note that tomorrow I’ll be appearing at Huron University College at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario, at 6pm to talk about writing, and Lost. Hope to see some of you there!

“A wise man once said that war was coming to this island. I think it just got here.”

As we enter the second half of the final season, all of the stories are beginning to come together. We were in contact with both camps equally in this episode for once, and even saw what was happening with Widmore. In Locke’s camp you have misery — Jin’s leg is hurting and he’s angry. Sayid confesses that he can’t feel anything at all (I thought that moment was devastating) and Smokey’s suggestion that that might actually be for the best was creepy. Kate and Sawyer are both trapped in their own worlds of sadness. Claire is realizing that Aaron won’t know who she is and she’s wondering what the use of leaving the island even is. Over in Jacob’s camp, it’s not like it’s much better. Ilana just keeps polishing her guns while Sun can’t speak to anyone anymore, Jack tries to keep things together and brings hope to them, Richard and Hurley return, Miles has his caustic comments, and Frank plays cards. And Ben... well, Ben’s become quiet. I’m actually really missing evil weaselly Ben. Bring him back!!

The war is coming, and we know once and for all that Widmore is NOT on the Man in Black’s side... meaning he’s actually a good guy? So what does that make Ben? Widmore suggests that he thought the Man in Black was a fairy tale, but did Ben know anything about it?

And the Kwon candidate is...
I think after this episode it’s possible we had a hint that Sun was the candidate. (Only on Lost could I use the phrase “it’s possible we had a hint” and act like it’s a solid clue.) In the sideways world, she walked by a mirror, looked in it and suddenly stopped and stared like she saw someone else looking back at her... or like she saw momentarily what she looked like in the other world. So far only the candidates have done that with mirrors in the sideways world.

• “Unless Alpert’s covered in bacon grease I’m not sure Hurley can track anything.” LOL!!!!
• Sun flirting with Jin in the hotel room with the buttons on her shirt was fantastic. I LOVED that scene!
• Gah!! When Sun conked her head on that tree I actually gasped out loud.
• Room 23!!!
• Keamy: “I feel like I’m in those damn Godzilla movies.” Hahaha!! I love the little details they gave him to make him more of an idiot, like yelling to make the Koreans understand, and then mixing them up with Japanese people.
• Mikhail!! With two eyes!!
• Miles: “She hits her head and forgets ENGLISH? Are we supposed to buy that?!” Frank: “Asks the man who communes with the dead.” HAHAHA!!! Oh Frank... I would buy a book of your one-liners.
• Richard walking over wearing the cross made me swoon. I’ve been in love with this guy for three years, and after last week’s episode, it totally paid off. ;) Oh Richard...
• Sun unleashing on Richard, who turns to look at Jack, who gives a little shrug and a “Dude, I’m as lost as you are” look. Brilliant!
• Jin looking at the pictures of Ji Yeon for the first time, and the look on his face (only I felt a little bad that Sun wasn’t with him when he saw pictures of his daughter for the first time).
• I know there’s one more highlight I’m forgetting... what could it be???
• DESMOND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

• Desmond My Desmond was the thing in the box. I joked a couple of weeks ago that perhaps the container is like Ben’s box, and contains what you want the most; in which case, if it represented my wish it would have been Desmond. Which means... that container represented my wish!!! Oh THANK YOU Lost writers, for making this show all about ME!! :)

The Numbers:
At the hotel, Jin and Sun are put on the 8th floor; Ben says he told them all 4 times that he didn’t do this to Sun.

Did You Notice?:
• When we were watching Kate and Sawyer chat through the night goggles at the very beginning, it felt very voyeuristic, even though we’re listening in on them every week, there was something different about watching them like that.
• Widmore’s peeps shoot poisoned darts, similar to what the Others used at the end of S2.
• Oh DAMN Liz Lemon is back. Rats.
• Sun seemed so dominant in the hotel room that I don’t believe for a second she would have feebly buttoned up her blouse on the plane for him, nor would her “bodyguard” ahve deigned to speak to her in that way. So that was definitely a false lead for us.
• When Smokey approaches Sun, the red flowers are behind her. They’re always nearby when he shows up.
• When Sun wakes up in the bed beside Jin, he looked dead for a second... it was eerie how still he was sitting.
• When Jin flips the switch in Room 23 and the crazytown Clockwork Orange shit begins to happen, we see DeGroot with his goggles on looking at a microscope... the message “Think About” “Your Life” with many Buddha statues around it, and then “We are the causes of our own suffering” text is laid over a graveyard that looks an awful lot like the one that has Jin’s tombstone in it, then a picture of the moon, then doll’s eyes, another Buddha, “Everything Changes” over an old stove and a compass (not a directional compass but the one that usually comes with a protractor for geometry), then 3 keyboards (interestingly, the top one has a number pad above it with 9 keys on it... much like that one Charlie pushed in the S3 finale that had been programmed by a musician) and then Jin switches it off.
• Now we see why Keamy was wearing that fancy watch in “Sundown”: it was Paik’s watch.
• Is it just me, or has something happened to Jack to make him really super hot in S6?? Is it the hair? Is it his less douchey attitude? It is a combo? Maybe it’s just the hair.
• Smokey always refers to people he hates as “friend,” the same thing he pointed out to Caesar and Bram.
• Sun suddenly speaking in a way that no one can understand made me think of the Tower of Babel story in the Old Testament, where one minute everyone speaks the same language, and the next no one can understand each other.
• It looks like Mr. Paik is a complete dick in every reality.
• “The heart wants what the heart wants.” Sometimes I feel like that could be the mantra of the show.
• There was some weird stuff happening in the fridge. Keamy does all of his talking, and then Jin says, “Thank you.” Keamy is extremely careful around Jin, like he genuinely doesn’t want to hurt him, and when he says, “I’m sorry... some people just aren’t meant to be together” it looks like he’s saying it with more pain than he should. Is that on purpose, or is there something larger happening there?
• In the pictures with Ji Yeon, you can see Sun’s dog Bpo Bpo.
• AH!! Sun is pregnant in the sideways world! Jin’s sperm was OK in that world, and he didn’t need the Magical Island Sperm™ to impregnate her.
• Jack is brilliant in the scene with Sun... it felt like one of those lovely season 1 moments where one character connects to the other, or when Jack was really helpful and a pretty damn good doctor to people on the island. (Is it just me, or am I in love with Jack in this episode?! What has HAPPENED to me?!)
• Was anyone else thinking, “Sun, there are only a few pages in that little notebook... stop wasting them by drawing giant emoticons”?
• Notice Sawyer doesn’t quite finish his sentence: “Then we’re screwed six ways to Sun-”
• Sayid emerging from the water was SO Apocalypse Now.

So Many Questions...
• Does anyone know if what the customs guy says is true? Can they simply confiscate the money if he won’t fill out the paperwork? Isn’t there some law stating that they need to have a Korean translator standing there to tell him this stuff fairly?
• So if Jin isn’t married to Sun, why is he working for Paik? In the other world it was a necessary evil to get Sun, but in this one it seems he’s willingly working for Paik, and happened to meet Sun while he was doing it (I assume... or perhaps he met her and then worked for Paik to get closer to her...) Either way, working for Paik doesn’t seem to cause the personal turmoil that it did in the other world.
• In the sideways world, most people are living happier lives, but Sayid’s is miserable, and now Jin’s and Sun’s are falling apart. And notice theirs are interconnected but not connected to the others. Are they separate somehow?
• When Sun woke up, she could only speak Korean. In the sideways world, she can only speak Korean. Any connection?
• Why is Zoe looking for the pockets of electromagnetic energy on the island? She says she’s a geophysicist, so what does she have to do with Widmore’s team?
• Smokey tells Claire that her name isn’t on the wall (but we saw Littleton there... perhaps it was Aaron?) and that Kate’s isn’t... “Not anymore.” Her name hasn’t been crossed off Jacob’s dial, though. Why the inconsistency?
• So... is Jin the tomato?
• Jack promises Sun that he'll get her back to Jin... he's made promises he can't keep before, and I really hope this isn't one of them.
• So, does Sawyer really know what’s in the room in the sub, or does the Man in Black just THINK he knew what was in there?
• So... where is Penny? How did Widmore get Desmond? Did he take him out of the hospital? Does that mean he has Charlie, too? I remember saying at the end of S5 that we saw Eloise get into a cab, but Widmore was still there... did he do something?

And tomorrow at noon I will once again be participating in the Globe and Mail Lost chat from noon to 1pm EST. Go here to ask questions and comment. See you there!

While You Wait for Lost...

Thanks to Joshua for sending this one to me. I love these opening credit mash-ups, and now to take my two favourite shows and put them together?? AWESOME.

Monday, March 29, 2010

I'm Coming to London! and Other Ramblings...

Hey all! OK, what ramblings do I have for you today? Other than I'm *this close* to being finished the massive project I was working on and cannot WAIT to see the finished product?!

How about this? A book I've been working on for the past year is out, and the man who wrote it will be doing a book tour through the US, Canada, and the UK. His name is Sam Cutler, and he was the tour manager for the Rolling Stones during their ill-fated 1969 tour... the one that began with the Hyde Park show that became a memorial to Brian Jones, and ended in the disaster of Altamont. Sam was the guy behind all of it, and the stories he tells in this book are rollicking, vivid, and amazing. After Altamont, when he was left behind to clean up the mess, he jumped ship and became the touring manager for the Grateful Dead, and he's got some great stories about Jimi, Janis, and the Dead and what THAT was like. He's lived about six lifetimes in one, and most of them are in the pages of this book. So check it out!! (And Sam was an absolute joy to work with... what a lot of fun that book was!) The book is called You Can't Always Get What You Want: My Life with the Rolling Stones, the Grateful Dead and Other Wonderful Reprobatesand you can click on the link to order it.

Hmm... what else. Oh, I'm going to be at Huron College talking about being a writer, and then talking specifically about Lost, in London Ontario on Wednesday, March 31 (i.e. THIS WEDNESDAY) at 6pm. I'll be talking for about an hour. I hope you can make it!! Please please pass on the message to other Lost fans in London and southwestern Ontario, and I would LOVE to meet you if you're there so please come up and talk to me afterwards if you come. If you happen to be in London and have some free time, Brian Francis, the author of Fruit (the runner-up to the 2009 Canada Reads competition) will be there talking at noon. His readings are SO funny you won't want to miss them. I'll be there at that, but in another room for most of it because I have to do the Globe chat at exactly the same time. But I'll be trying to duck in and out to hear it.

My dear friend Chris, who I did my Masters in English with (and we basically stood in the halls every day before class speaking entirely in Simpsons... we bonded over our mutual TV geekdom) is now a professor out east, and he's written this amazing blog entry today about why terrorism is a topic that's not covered in film very much, but is covered in all kinds of television, and he's wondering why that is. Go and check out his argument and leave your own ideas.

And finally, I urge you to head over to the comments on the blog post I wrote about the Lost Series Finale title, and check out the discussion between Jen and Fred. It's fascinating!! Thanks for keeping that going, guys... I've loved reading it.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

“Ab Aeterno” – The Walking Dead

There are so many little things to pull out of this episode, and I meant to do so much earlier than now but unfortunately my week has been, well, hellishly busy, to put it lightly. And next week is looking like it’ll be even worse. But I’ll pull out some tidbits we can use as talking points here.

First, a big question from this episode seems to be whether Isabella is a manifestation of the smoke monster or if she’s an actual ghost. Many people would like to believe (myself included) that when Richard sees her in the bottom of the Black Rock, she’s Smokey, messing with his head. But when she’s standing next to him with Hurley interpreting, she’s an actual ghost.

Another option might be that she’s actually a manifestation of Jacob in that scene, and he’s trying to manipulate people into killing the man in black, but it could really go either way. And I’d like to think that WAS Isabella.

So, then, who have we seen before who is a Smokey apparition, and who is an actual ghost? It would appear that whoever Hurley sees might actually be a ghost, or at the very least, in the Jacob camp: Eko, Charlie, Isabella, Ana Lucia, Jacob himself. But the others were either near Smokey or were in conjunction with him in another way: Yemi and Alex immediately come to mind.

Christian is a big question mark. Is Christian a manifestation of Smokey? Or is Jacob creating him? Or is he an actual ghost? Hurley DID see Christian – it was in “The Beginning of the End,” when Hurley looked into the cabin and saw the man in the rocking chair (Christian) and a second eye appear in the window. Miles saw Christian, and reported that a guy Claire called “Dad” came and took her and the baby. He never suggested Christian was dead, and since Miles knows the difference, you’d think that would have been a detail he’d have mentioned. Claire could see him. Jack’s seen him. And Locke talked to him in the cabin.

Walt also stands apart. He appeared to Shannon as if to warn her, and then appeared to John Locke to get him out of the pit of bodies. But Walt is “special,” and there’s something different about him, as if he’s astrally projecting himself. Perhaps he can create an image of himself in the same way Smokey can create one of Alex? The thing that sets Walt apart is, quite simply, that he’s alive. So if that’s the case, is the guy we saw standing at the pit of bodies something that Smokey created (which would be strange, since in the past he only creates images of people who are dead) or did Walt seem to know exactly when to project himself there to warn or help those people? Is the Walt that Shannon saw (covered in water, which could be an indication that the Others were dunking him in water somehow) and the Walt that Locke saw the same being? Or was one the actual Walt projecting himself and the other was Smokey or Jacob?

And then there’s that little blond boy. Smokey saw him, and was surprised when Sawyer could also see him. Is that a real ghost? Or is Jacob sending a message?

And what the heck was that black horse doing on the island?

Friday, March 26, 2010

Attn: London Ontario Lost Fans!

Hey all, I know there are a few of you out there from my old stomping grounds, London Ont., and some who live close to that area as well. I'm going to be at Huron College (just next to the UWO campus) next Wednesday, March 31 (probably early evening, I'm told... maybe late afternoon?), talking about how I went from being a student at that college to writing about Lost... and then of course I'll be moving it into a discussion of S6 of Lost because that's what I REALLY want to talk about!! So I'm hoping maybe to see a couple of you out there, and be sure to come up and talk to me and tell me you're here on this blog!

Also, I'll be with Brian Francis, the author of Fruit, who will be talking at the school at lunchtime about his book that was the runner-up to The Book of Negroes in the 2009 Canada Reads competition. He's worth seeing for sure, if you want to make a day of it! Watch this space, and when I have actual times and places for both I'll post it here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Today's Links

I meant to have another write-up on "Ab Aeterno" today, and it just didn't happen. And I haven't written a DocArzt blog on it, either. :( I'm having one of those weeks... a project I've been killing myself over for the past few days just sort of blew up today due to a miscommunication and now the last 2 days of work were kind of... gone. So I had to start over. UGH.

ANYway... I wanted to share a few links with you today. I've just begun participating in the Stream of Consciousness blog's "Lost Blogging Collective," where blogger Chris Kelly has been sending out questions to over 20 Lost bloggers and is receiving huge batches of answers. It's great to read the various perspectives week after week (and aside from me, our own Sagacious Penguin is one of the bloggers providing answers). Chris has been exhaustively covering all of these questions and answers while still putting up a massive blog post today linking to many of our Lost-related posts. What a great way to bring together so many different voices in the Lostverse. Check out his blog here.

I introduced you to grad student (har) Matthew Pateman's blog yesterday, full of scholarly jargon delights. Today he put up a post referencing... me! Way to immediately have me link to him again because I love talking about myself? YES. His post today is called "On not being Nikki Stafford." It's quite lovely (and untrue in the department of him not keeping up with me writing-wise... he acts like lectures he has to prepare every week are nothing) but he just HAD to go and mention that I screamed about the bugs in Arkadelphia. First, I only screamed once and it's when one suddenly flew up in the air and into someone's hair next to me, and secondly, they were frickin' MASSIVE. Ahem.

I think after yesterday he discovered first-hand what it's like to collaborate with me -- "Hey! I know we've been working on this paper for 4 months but what do you think about scrapping it and starting over because I have this great new idea!!" "Uh... wait, what?" "No, really, it's totally fine. I typically write most of my Lost books and then throw out about 60,000 words and start over again 3 weeks before it's due, so it's TOTALLY fine." "But... I have all this other work to do... and writing... and, I thought..." "Nah, it'll be great. Ok, off to start it again!!"


I wish I was making that up. (Matthew wishes that, too.) Go onto his blog and lobby for him to start referring to himself as Micks. I told him if he'd just change his name to that we could take our act on the road -- "Niks and Micks." I'm still baffled as to why he didn't go for it. Pfft. It's catchy!!

And once again, a reminder that I'll be on Space tonight at 11. I found a link on their site today that was filmed just before season 6 (check out my wish about Locke... THAT CAME TRUE!!) and while it says that it's only available in Canada, apparently you can watch the first bit before it cuts off -- just follow that link and scroll down to where it mentions me and hit the word "Watch." So check it out and BEHOLD the crazy makeup. ;)

And finally, I was interviewed by the National Post a couple of days ago about online fan viral marketing and whether it actually helps shows out. I was referenced in the article, though not directly quoted. I talked a lot about the Mad Men and True Blood Twitter players, who I think add a significant new layer to the shows by doing what they do. If you haven't checked them out yet, please do... they are FANtastic.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lost Series Finale Title Announced!!

Last October I ran a contest where people had to come up with what they thought the series finale title would be, and we tossed around hundreds and hundreds of ideas. I closed the contest on October 31, explaining that way, no one would be influenced by the events of season 6. We had some pretty wicked entries... and Darlton just announced it in a podcast moments ago.

And the winner is... well, pretty much the first person who posted. It wasn't a stretch. Humanebean got in the first post and the title was *part* of one of his titles. Nathan immediately posted next, and he nailed it in his first five. And then I think 200 other people mentioned the exact same one.

So... drum roll please (and for the spoiler-sensitive I will post it in white and you'll have to highlight it to see it)... the series finale title is:

The End

Hm. To be honest, I think it's perfect and fitting. Sometimes the obvious answer isn't necessarily the bad one. :)

Some Stuff

I have so much more to say about last night's episode... I'm sitting at the Space studios right now at CTV just waiting for the producer to get here to do the bit, and I wanted to post some stuff while I waited. (Tune into Space tomorrow night at 11!)

First, the Globe chat is now up. You can go and read it here.

I also contributed to this week's Lost panel at the National Post, Canada's OTHER national newspaper (hm... in a war of Jacob vs. Man in Black, which paper would go with which side??) You can read that much shorter bit here.

And finally, my friend Matthew Pateman, who I like to mock over here ALL THE TIME (because it's just so much fun to do...) has finally succumbed to my constant begging and has started up his own blog. Head on over and barrage him with comments so he continues to keep it up, and doesn't turn it into a one-off thing like most blogs out there. It promises to be brilliant!!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

6.09 Ab Aeterno

“Ab Aeterno.” Latin for “from the beginning of time.”

Since the beginning of season 3, I’ve been coming on here and writing up the episodes in my typical episode guide format: Did you notice this and that? Here are my questions... ooh, nitpicks! Wow, here are Hurley’s numbers!!

I’ve probably published more words on Lost than anyone else. I’ve spent more time writing about Lost than about anything in my entire life. And I’ve written about a LOT of other things. Despite that, I’ve referred to The Wire as the smartest show on television, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer still holds that place in my heart as my all-time favourite television show. But Lost is right up there... each week I marvel at the minutiae, giggle with delight at finding things in the background, piecing together the puzzle that has slowly unfolded over six years. But it has always engaged my mind more than my heart... despite my heart being fully engaged (please don’t get me wrong) my love of this show has always been in the piecing-together of it. I care about these characters, but I care equally about the war, the backstory, and where we're headed.

But tonight... tonight. I just finished watching “Ab Aeterno,” the episode I’ve been waiting for since Richard Alpert was standing outside the hospital window looking at baby John Locke. The episode that promised us answers. The episode that would go right back to the beginning. I expected a lot from it.

But I didn’t expect this. Guys, I’m writing this through tears. Tears that Lost just moved from the epic to the sublime. Tears of happiness at the answers we finally got. Tears of sadness from Isabella’s moving speech to Richard at the end (I sobbed like a baby through that entire scene). Tears of sheer wonder at Nestor Carbonell’s UNBELIEVABLE performance.

THIS is the episode we’ve wanted from the beginning. THIS is the hour of television that just made almost six years of loyalty worth it. THIS is the stuff I just KNEW in my heart was coming. THIS is the episode that all of those naysayers will have to eat their words over. This is my new favourite Lost episode ever (oddly, structured unlike any other Lost episode before it with the exception of Meet Kevin Johnson, which also flashed back to Michael’s backstory and didn’t do a constant back and forth throughout the episode) and I will defend it against any critics to my dying day.

I am still crying. I am SO HAPPY to have seen this. It was like watching a series finale... and MAN if the series finale can conjure up the wild emotions in me that this episode just did, then this really will be the greatest TV show of all time.

Buffy, move over... you officially have to share that “Nikki’s all-time favourite show” mantle with Lost.

I almost launched right into a video podcast, folks, but I’m blubbering and would be sobbing and sniffling and crying and laughing all the way through it and it would probably look more crazytown than sincere, so I’ll just stick to writing for now. I am just so over the moon right now, I’m literally shaking. Too much? you might say. Not for me: I’ve devoted YEARS of research to this show, and for it to have moved me the way it just did, to have engaged my heart so much more than my brain... all I can say is thank you. Thank you, Team Darlton... thank you thank you thank you. I am just so freakin happy right now I can barely form words to type.

But I must!!!!!! Ahem... :::wiping away tears, composing self::: On with the blog!!!

(OK, just watched it a second time and I’m BAWLING again!!!)

“The cork... is this island. And it’s the only thing keeping the darkness where it belongs.”
Last week I said that I thought Smokey’s speech on the beach with Kate gave him a lot of sympathy... his mother was crazy, he was trapped, he just wanted out. But after this week’s episode, I’m convinced that it was just the writers trying to lead us away from the clear thing: That Jacob really IS the good guy, and Smokey the bad.

The way that Smokey and Jacob talked to Richard is telling, and if you use the biblical stories as your guide, you’ll see how each one fits into it. The devil has a silver tongue, is persuasive, and will tell you whatever you want to hear. He’ll want your allegiance above all else, and will offer you something in return... but you have to give him something first. Smokey finds the keys to free Richard from the chains, but only when he gets his allegiance first does he unchain him. He tells him that if he does what he asks, he’ll get him his wife back. He tells him he’s the good guy, don’t worry, we’re the same, you and I... he tells him everything Richard wants to hear.

Jacob hits him before talking to him (not exactly endearing him to him). He shows him that he’s not actually dead or in Hell. He asks him if he wants to work with him, but doesn’t promise him anything for it. He tells him point blank that he can’t get his wife back, and he can’t absolve him of his sins. What he CAN do is give him immortality that will prevent him from ever having to go to Hell and face up to those sins.

And what of Isabella? At the end of S5 we were pretty convinced that Smokey and the dead people on the island were one and the same, but as I’ve pointed out repeatedly this season, I’m starting to doubt that, simply because Smokey doesn’t inhabit their bodies... he simply looks like them (as in Locke’s body existing separately from the lookalike Smokey). But he doesn’t wear the man-suits lightly, and I’m not sure he can easily create those beings. But if Isabella is telling Richard to kill the Man in Black, she’s clearly NOT the Man in Black. (OK, that and I just want that speech of hers at the end to have been REAL.) Perhaps on the island the dead can cross over and actually reach out to their loved ones?

Jacob says that he wants people to come to the island to prove the Man in Black wrong (looks like the Man in Black’s score is way higher so far, but Jacob hasn’t given up faith). He said he won’t intervene and won’t help people, but maybe he somehow lifts the barrier on the island so their loved ones can help prod them along? Perhaps Christian and Yemi and Isabella aren’t evil hallucinations, but good ones, trying to help the people they love to make the right decisions. Maybe Yemi was begging Eko to repent for good, not bad.

Jacob appears to be the good guy, but unlike Jesus, he’s not going to tell stories and die for their sins. There’s an interesting reference to Jesus near the beginning, when Richard is in the jail cell and the merciless priest comes in. Richard is reading the section in Luke where Jesus is rejected in Nazareth. The full story is here (what we see on the screen is verses 24 to 28):

16And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.
17And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,
18The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
19To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
20And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.
21And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.
22And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth. And they said, Is not this Joseph's son?
23And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.
24And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.
25But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land;
26But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow.
27And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian.
28And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath,
29And rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong.
30But he passing through the midst of them went his way

In this scene, the people tell Jesus to heal himself, or to prove that he’s actually a miracle worker, and he refuses to prove it, just as Jacob won’t do any of that.

Jacob came off as a bit of a dick in “The Lighthouse,” but when he said to Hurley that he’s just leading them along without helping them, we now know that’s how he believes Jack might be the guy to finally make the right decision. But, as Jacob said then, Jack must make that decision on his own, without Jacob’s help.

And now Richard just might be the one lying in the shadow of the statue... if he kills the Man in Black, he could be the one to save them all.

• Nestor Carbonell.
• Um... the entire episode?
• Nestor Carbonell.
• The look of the episode... visually it was stunning... even the crapola CGI of the stormy seas didn’t disappoint me, simply because it was still pretty terrifying.
• Jack: Do you know who he meant? Ben: Oh, THIS should be interesting.
• The look on Jack’s face when he was told that Locke was the bad guy (I cannot WAIT for these two to come face to face again, even though Smokey isn’t Locke... I still believe Locke is in there somewhere).
• Richard giggling like a crazy girl when Ilana asks him what to do next?
• I saw Titus Welliver’s name in the opening scene as a guest star and I squealed.
• Nestor Carbonell.
• Richard crying over Isabella’s dead body was heartbreaking.
• Jacob referring to the other guy as the “Man in Black,” which is how the fans have been referring to him since “The Incident.”
• Richard screaming, “Does the offer still stand?” and Hurley saying, “What offer, Dude?”
• “She says your English is awesome.” (This is where the tears started for me, by the way.)
• Hurley telling Richard if he doesn’t stop the Man in Black, they all go to Hell.... and the cut to Locke turning to us. ACK!!
• Nestor Carbonell.

• Magnus Hanso (previously seen mentioned on the blast door map as being buried next to the Black Rock) was the captain of the ship... something most of us assumed.
• And THAT is how the Black Rock ended up in the middle of the island... a massive tidal wave.
• And THAT is how Tawaret, the statue, was destroyed.
• Jacob (if his speech is true) lives on the island in an effort to keep the ultimate darkness from leaving the island and spreading throughout the world. The island is the lid on Pandora’s Box, and Jacob is the man sitting on that lid keeping it closed.
• The Man in Black believes that man is essentially corrupt. I suggested in my first Finding Lost book that if we have a Rousseau and a Locke, all we’re missing is a Hobbes, the man who believed that man was essentially corrupt. It looks like we’ve finally got him.
• Jacob brings people to the island to try to prove to the Man in Black that man is NOT corrupt and will choose good.
• Richard is immortal because he cannot be absolved of his sins and doesn’t want to go to Hell.
• His actual job is as Jacob’s intermediary between him and everyone who comes to the island.

Did You Notice?:
• Richard says to Jack, “Wanna know a secret?” the same way Locke said it to Walt.
• When Richard tells them all that they’re dead, how many fans’ jaws dropped? (I just assumed it was crazy rantings, but the fan service in that moment was all kinds of awesome.) Remember, it’s the same story that Anthony Cooper gave Sawyer when he was ALSO (like Richard) chained up in the Black Rock in season 3’s “The Brig.”
• Richard’s backstory begins in 1867 on Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands, a group of Spanish islands off the coast of Africa. Beginning in the 16th century, many inhabitants on the island succumbed to disease or were sold into slavery thanks to the immigration of people from the Spanish Empire. Richard and his wife were probably descendents of the original immigrants who came during that wave, so it’s a sad irony that they succumbed to both of those things.
• 1867 was the year of Canada's Confederation, i.e. the year we became a nation. Interesting they chose that year for when Richard's life fell apart. I guess when Canada came together, evil really WAS unleashed on the world!! Ha!
• The name “Isabella” means “My god is a vow.”
• When the doctor gets up to go to the medicine cabinet and the camera’s on Richard, the lightning flashes and there’s a large chair in the background that looks like an electric chair in the effect of it.
• The powder is white... another in the black/white imagery, but notice how to get this white powder, he murdered someone to get it and still lost his wife. “White” didn’t save him the way he hoped it would. A hint of what Jacob is or a red herring?
• Richard is abandoned by the church and his religion as the priest walks out of the cell with his Bible and his hope of absolution. The organized church has failed him... the priest is merciless and unforgiving. But he still has his faith, regardless.
• Did anyone else think Jonas Whitfield (the guy who recruits Richard for the ship) looked like Colin Firth?
• I think I said this in a comments thread a couple of weeks ago, but interesting that the ship is called the Black Rock, and there’s a black rock on the scale in the cave (Smokey’s thrown the white rock away).
• When Smokey moved in on Richard, he flashed the same way he did when Juliet and Kate were trapped in the tree in “Left Behind.” Notice Richard closed his eyes, whereas previously we saw Eko stare down the monster and that’s what we thought made Smokey go away.
• Here’s what I would have done if the rain had started and I couldn’t reach with my tongue... slide my shoe out with my foot, and then drag it back and drink it. Why didn’t the guy ever use his feet (like when the little nail was out of reach?) Small, eensy nitpick. In fact, forget I said anything. ;)
• Two words for that boar eating the dead guy: Dis. GUSTING. Oh my God that was gross.
• “It’s good to see you out of those chains.” That’s the same thing Not-Locke said to Richard on the beach right before whacking him in the neck.
• Nestor holds his body in a slight slouch as he walks up to the statue with the dagger, making Richard look completely emaciated.
• When Jacob brings out the wine bottle, I thought for a second it was the same bottle that Richard built the little ship in a bottle in last season (but if Smokey smashed it, it can’t be the same one).

So Many Questions...
• While I’m not sure, with 7 episodes left, I really want an Ilana flashback, I am curious about her link to Jacob, and I think if it’s more of an Ilana/Jacob flashback, I’d love to see it... how did she know him already? Did she wish that SHE were one of the candidates? You can’t mistake that look of disappointment on her face when he tells her he needs her help protecting the candidates, but doesn’t actually offer her a candidate position.
• Was her head bandaged in a battle trying to save another candidate?
• So wait... Sun is definitely one of the candidates? When was that determined? Do we know that for sure or is Ilana just telling her she is because she’s assuming that’s what “Kwon” meant?
• Does anyone speak Spanish out there and could tell me what Hurley was saying at the very beginning when he was talking to invisible Isabella when Jack came up to him?
• I’m wondering about the dead people on the island now... do you still think they’re manifestations of the Man in Black/Smokey, or are they actually there in some way? Could their spirits transcend death on this island to reach out and help their loved ones? I mean, if she’s a manifestation of the Man in Black, why would she tell Richard to KILL the Man in Black? Hm. I want to believe that speech by her at the end was sincere.
• The words that Man in Black speaks to Richard – telling him to plunge the dagger directly into his chest, you only have one chance, do it quickly, don’t let him speak or it’ll be too late, he’s very persuasive – were all the words Dogen said to Sayid when he was telling him to kill Smokey... AND he handed him the exact same dagger. How did the dagger move from one side of the war to the other, with exactly the same instructions being spoken?
• Jacob has the same crazy superhuman strength that Ben exhibited in S2... is there a link?
• When Jacob is killed, does his soul enter the next person who fulfills their candidacy? So, like the way Smokey looks different but is the same person inside, is Jacob still in there somewhere?

I feel like I have SO much more to say on this episode, but I have to watch it 15 more times tonight and cry some more and try to form my thoughts into something cohesive. I'll post more tomorrow and Thursday but until then... let's discuss!

A reminder that I’m going to be appearing on Space on Thursday night at 11pm! I’ll be on Innerspace in the opening and final segments talking about this episode (oh what a GLORIOUS episode for them to have invited me in to discuss at length!!) So be sure to tune in!!

And listen in to Marshall and Forbes on The Ocean 98.5 in Victoria, BC at 6 a.m. local time, 9 a.m. EST. Go here and click on the Listen Now button if you’re out of the listening area.

And tomorrow at noon I will once again be participating in the Globe and Mail Lost chat from noon to 1pm EST. Go here to ask questions and comment. See you there!

Next week on Lost:

Lost Haiku Time! "Recon"

OK, I'm so sorry guys but this one is going to be super-quick. I'm so incredibly busy today I can't even keep my head straight, so just one haiku from me and you guys can take over, as usual.

Also, a quick note (thanks for mentioning this Marebabe!) but tonight's Lost episode is scheduled to run 6 minutes overtime. So please make sure your PVRs and DVRs and TiVOs or whatever you use is recording for an extra 6 minutes (make it 10 just to be on the safe side). I'd like to say I hate it when they do this, but it means more Lost time so yay!!

Briefcase full of dough
Sawyer’s the same. Wrong! But now...
Cops hear him have sex.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Nik at Nite Meet-up??

Hey guys: I'm going to be in the Big Apple in the first week of May, probably from May 5-8. I was thinking if there were a few of you who lived in NYC and wanted to actually get together and talk about Lost in person (!!) maybe we could all do dinner somewhere on the Friday the 7th, if that works. If you're interested, email me off the list and we'll figure out something. I think I've already got Sonshine Music interested (and hopefully AchingHope, too!), so let's see who else wants to come out!

I wish I was coming in the night before, and then we could actually WATCH an episode of Lost together!! :)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

This Is Me Procrastinating...

So, my husband has taken the kids away for the weekend so I can finally get cracking on Finding Lost: Season 6. I have to admit, I haven't been as present in the comments on my blog recently, and for that I apologize. I'm working on an incredibly heavy fall of TV books, and they always come in late (due to the scheduling of the season) and have to be edited, proofread, typeset, with all photos and captions in place in about a month. Usually that process is more like 8-10 months. So with four of these books in place for fall (FOUR!) I'm dying here.

The first is on True Blood, and with the show starting again on June 13, we have to have that book in stores by June 1, so it's been a mad dash. When I was in the UK, it's all I was working on, during the plane ride there and back, and in my hotel room. The second is on Glee, and that one is coming to me in about two weeks, the same day as a book on The Vampire Diaries (I'll be talking about each of these in more detail when they're out). I'm also editing a book on the music of the Louisiana bayou and a novel by a first-time writer that is incredibly hilarious and awesome.

Then there's my book. The one I haven't actually STARTED. Yes, I admit it. That said, I work best under pressure. I didn't start working on FLS5 until April, and I didn't start writing the episode guides until after the season had finished... and still had the entire thing handed in on July 1. I think things through a LOT before I begin typing, and then once I begin, I'm good to go.

I've been reading some books in preparation for it. One of them is The Stand, a book I'm sure most of you have read already, but despite being a Stephen King nut when I was a teenager (I devoured so many of his books it was insane) I have to admit I'd never read this one. It's taking me FOREVER and I adore every word of it (he is a master, folks... a MASTER) but I just have to find the time to read it on top of everything else.

Funny story: I was on the plane to the UK last week and I had the book with me and was reading while other people were still boarding. I was sitting on the aisle of the middle row of three (I was like Rose, but on the opposite end of that section) and so far no one else had sat in the two seats beside me. Would they stay empty? I thought excitedly to myself. And... they TOTALLY did. I was Thrilled! I spread out my work later when we were in the sky on the seat and tray beside me, keeping my immediate space open for the editing work I was doing. It was glorious. But anyway, then this flight attendant comes walking through saying to someone that there are tons of empty seats, and they need four people to move to the back. I thought, "Right, because those four people will be the difference between taking off normally or the plane trying to go up in the air but the nose is scraping along the ground because of the unbalance." ;)

Anyway, AS he's saying this, I'm reading The Stand and -- no word of a lie -- come to this section where a guy is going on about this statistic on plane crashes (open purse, grab sticky note, pop one on this page for Lost reference) and he says that we all have this innate psychic ability to detect when something terrible is going to happen, and this guy had done stats on plane crashes and realized that every plane crash happened to a plane that was 80% full or less. It's like people woke up and their bodies made them sick so they wouldn't get on that plane, telling them it was going to crash and they didn't want to be on it when it did. So, he says, if you're on a plane and it's not full, hold on tight because that has a much higher risk of being the one to crash. I looked up, looked around me, saw a ton of empty seats and seriously burst into laughter. I couldn't stop giggling. It was so freakin perfect. Oh Stephen King, I love you. You should be required reading on all flights. :)

I didn't tell you guys this, but a reporter from the New York Times called to interview me the other day!! I don't know if anything I said will end up in the story, but my fingers are tightly crossed that it will.

And finally, Damon Lindelof tweeted yesterday that as of the end of this weekend, he and Carlton are putting the final period at the end of the final script of Lost. This is it... by Monday, the last words will have been written, and the actual writing on the show is done. I read that and was filled with a crazy excitement. Other people were more morose and upset and, "Oh MAN that depresses me to no end" but I'm really really excited. This is what we've been waiting for, and why does everyone think the discussion ENDS when Lost does? That's when it BEGINS for me!!

So, in the spirit of Darlton finishing Lost this weekend, I'm going to begin writing the last of my Finding Lost books. Sad, yes. As sad as the thought of no more Benjamin Linus on my TV week after week? No.

OK, SERIOUSLY Nikki, you're already one hour behind on your schedule today and haven't begun. Get OFF the damn blog and start writing!!!

Oh no! My angry interior voice has begun. Sigh. About a month earlier than it usually shows up. Gotta go.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Finding Lost S6: Now Greener, Too!

Don't ever say I don't listen to my minions. ;) Some of you said it might look even better to brighten the green, so Barry has done exactly that for me (and I agree, mostly because I wanted it to match the colour of Batcabbage's head). And, now... HERE is the final cover. Thank you, Barry!!

Finding Lost... Belongs to You Already

This one from our dear Joshua (the man behind the incredible mystery package), who said he was responding to his Fuhrerlein's "directive" to create some more photoshopped Finding Lost covers, lol!

Apparently Richard Alpert stormed away from young John in "Cabin Fever" because he didn't choose the obvious thing on my table -- my book!! (Seriously, how are you guys DOING this? I must take a photoshop course...)

This One's for Matthew...

So earlier this week I told all of you about a conversation I had with my friend Matthew, who lovingly compared my blog to the Third Reich with me as the dictator and you guys as my loyal followers ("I meant it in the best possible way!" he cried) and I posted this during my weekly haiku roundup, and many of you wrote haikus about him and his comments rather than the episode. Most entertaining haikus for me EVER. I was laughing all day long. Poor Matthew even came on and wrote some haikus in his own desperate defense (and making me think, "Wait, does that make him one of my minions?" Hm...)

Anyway, Sonshine Music has gone even further, and after much digging finally uncovered the truth to back up Matthew's claims. Sigh... we can no longer deny it; it's true. Behold, the evidence:

[A photo of Hitler standing before his army, with my face photoshopped onto the little man's body and various avatars of my readers photoshopped onto the heads of the followers, has been removed because I don't want it to offend. Please see comments for a further explanation of my stance, and why I don't actually believe in doing this, but I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings and would rather get back to talking about other things]

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Finding Lost S6: Now De-Meyered!

So about a month ago I posted the new image for my season 6 book of Finding Lost, and explained that ever since the first season I've wanted a chess board to grace the cover. What I didn't explain was that while I was working with designer (and Nik at Nite reader) Barry Johnson, I'd told him specifically that I DO NOT want this looking anything like the Stephenie Meyer book, "Breaking Dawn" (a.k.a. the book that will make you want to scoop out your eyeballs with a melon baller so you never ever have to read tripe like that again). I thought he did a brilliant job, keeping the two kings in the middle, adding the Lost hieroglyphics and his own custom-made Dharma symbol. I posted it, and then the love for his design poured in...

... immediately followed by the criticisms. One person said I looked like I was trying to trick people into buying my book who really wanted Meyer's. Well, I would actually be doing them a favour, BUT ANYWAY... as I responded, if they bought my book thinking it was part of the Twilight Saga, then they're actually as illiterate as Meyer is assuming they are. There are no vampires (except Richard Alpert, possibly) on the island. Lost was using chess as its main theme LONG before she had conceived of that horrible last book. Apparently Meyer has the market cornered on using chess as imagery? Right... because it's a fairly recent game that popped up for the gaming generation. *snark*

Then I got an email from someone who hadn't read the comments saying, "Oh Nikki, I'm so sorry to have to tell you this, but there's another book out there already and your book looks exactly like it" and sent me the picture of Meyer's cover right beside mine. I was starting to get seriously annoyed, but my publisher loved it, as did their sales reps, and the majority of all of you did.

And then, two weeks ago in a meeting, someone who works with me whom I really, really admire and respect (if she tells me to read a book, it immediately goes on my to-do list), joked, "Yeah, it's a great cover... apart from being a complete Breaking Dawn ripoff." I thought I was going to cry. If she thought that, KNOWING it had been foremost in my mind that I didn't want it to look anything like that (and also knowing the hatred I have for that book) then it simply had to change. I LOVE the cover, but I had to do something about it. I wasn't going to change it to backgammon, as a few people said it should be (that's something that was the obvious game in season 1, but chess has been the pervading theme throughout the series, just like it was in Through the Looking-Glass).

When this book comes out I want it to be critiqued on what's inside, not by the cover. I don't want the cover overshadowing my final book. AND because I think Barry is magnificent, I don't want anyone criticizing his work, either.

So I've agonized over what to do, and a few days ago went to Barry with my new idea: Let's maintain the integrity of the chessboard. I refuse to give it up. BUT... since season 6 is all about going back to the beginning and hearkening back to season 1, and my Finding Lost season 1 cover has a green jungle in the background, let's put a hint of a ghostly jungle in the background, behind the chessboard, that links this book to the beginning of the Finding Lost series, while also using a main element of the entire TV series. He said no problem, worked his magic, and he did it. There is now no more black background, and I'm happily convinced and thrilled to say that I don't think it looks like Meyer anymore (not that I did before, but whatever).

So now I present my NEW Finding Lost Season 6 cover, and I hope those who loved the first one still love this one, and those who criticized it as being too Twilight-like will change their minds. I hope you like it. :)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Mmmm... cake

This is kind of crazy and I love it. And... I'm thinking Ben poisoned the cake.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lost 6.08 "Recon"

“Take me to your leader.”

This had SUCH a great opening, echoing the first Sawyer flashback we saw with the briefcase full of money, and for a second we think, “Aw... poor Sawyer’s going to be the same vengeful schmuck in every reality, and... oh my god, what? He’s a COP?!” Much like last season’s “LaFleur,” this was a great episode that acted as the bridge from the first half of the season to the second.

Which then reminds me that this season is half over. ACK!! Sadness...

• The switcheroo at the beginning.
• “LaFleur.” Hahaha!
• Miles as the partner!! They’re Sawyersky and Mutch!!
• Anthony Cooper!! For a second I thought he was so close and hung up on the lead before he could figure it out... but then he thankfully dialled the number of another Cooper.
• I loved the way Terry O’Quinn delivered the line, “And I don’t wanna be killed.” Smokey’s #1 priority is self-preservation.
• Charlotte! Interesting that she and Sawyer barely had any contact in the other timeline. They were part of the same group trekking across the island, but I barely remember any conversation between the two of them.
• Charlotte’s hair. That was pretty fantastic. She looked amazing.
• Not-Locke to Claire after Claire almost sliced Kate’s throat open: “This is completely inappropriate.” HAHA!! That just seemed like the most bizarro-world line ever to me. Loved it.
• Liam!!! I was so excited to see him. I named my kid after him, you know. (Kidding.) I just know we’re going to see Chah-lie again!
• Kate: “That’s very insightful, coming from a dead man.” Locke: “Mmm. Nobody’s perfect.” GREAT line.
• Not-Locke talking about his mother. It’s like there’s really a heart somewhere in there. They’re certainly making him a more sympathetic character than we previously thought, despite everything. I wonder if he was drawn to John Locke because his mother was crazy, too.
• Charlotte calling Jim’s apology gift a “sad sunflower.”
• Kate’s car slamming into the back of Sawyer’s. Ack!
• “Freckles”!! I was so happy to hear him say that.

Answers, or... References to Answers:
• When Widmore said it was sad how much Sawyer didn’t know about the island, I thought, “oh YES he’s going to pull up a chair and tell us some background... PLEASE.” Sigh. Nope.

Did You Notice?:
• There was no “Previously on...” They must have thought this episode was OK to watch for newbies. (Har.)
• So a couple of weeks ago when people were wondering what had happened to Jin and Sawyer, we were joking they hey, maybe Not-Locke just puts them all in one spot... and... he did!
• Island Sawyer looked really haggard and a lot older, and then Sideways Sawyer looked a lot fresher and younger. Well done to both Josh and the makeup and lighting crew for pulling that off.
• Sideways Jim doesn’t seem to use nicknames for people, but did you notice his mark called him “Dimples”? Ha!
• No Claire... NO! Don’t pull back that sheet, don’t you DARE pull back... oh good god. Nightmares again for me tonight.
• Kate could have been a tiny bit more sympathetic when seeing creepy horrible nightmare-inducing shudderific please-make-it-stop awful baby, rather than just saying, “What is THAT?” Although... I’ll admit when I first saw it my response was, “OMFG what the $#@! is THAT?!” So...
• Not-Locke told the group that Smokey killed the people in the Temple as if he wasn’t actually Smokey. Guess he thought that might mar their trust in him a little bit.
• I couldn’t help but think, when Claire grabbed Kate’s hand as if she were a child that the confused look on Kate’s face was, “CRAP... do I have to raise TWO Littletons now?”
• Miles seemed less like a professional partner and more like a life partner in this episode. “You know you can tell me the truth about anything.” “Are you lying to me?” “I checked your credit card statements, baby. Have you been cheating on me?!”
• The books on Jim’s dresser were Watership Down, A Wrinkle in Time, and Lancelot, all books he was reading in season 1.
• You know, Charlotte might have been innocently looking for a t-shirt, but she really appeared to be looking for something, like she knew that binder was there and it was what she’d been seeking. Then again, it could have just been her curious, archaeologist nature that found something during her “dig” and she couldn’t help but look at it.
• I’m pretty sure in the other world Sawyer’s parents died when he was 8, but here he’s 9. I could be wrong about that, though.
• I kind of thought Kate’s dress from season 3 should have been in much worse shape having laid outside in the rain and muck for three years...
• Sayid scared me. I’m so incredibly sad about him.
• The flies hovering over the corpses were really REALLY bad CGI.
• ZOMG, Tina Fey’s on the island!!
• James looks in the mirror at himself just like so many characters have done throughout the series (think Through the Looking-Glass) and then smashes it. Just like Jack smashed all the mirrors in the Lighthouse.
• Sawyer says to Tina Fey, “God’s got nuthin’ to do with it.” This echoes Ben talking to Locke in S2 in the armoury when he told him, “God doesn’t care about this place.”
• Kate does not take Not-Locke’s outstretched hand when he offers it.
• I couldn’t help but think that when Sawyer and Tina Fey were pushing out that pontoon boat they were going to end up shooting at the time-jumping people from season 5. I’m assuming that will eventually be her people.
• Man, just as I’m thinking, “GOD, Liz Lemon, you ask SO many questions you’re as annoying as this other character who – sadly – shares my name and... oh. She’s a bad guy. Whew. Now it’s OK for me to dislike her.”
• Holy CRAP, is the one guy holding the gigantic gun Chip from Kate & Allie? I think he also played Schillinger’s son on Oz.
• When Not-Locke says, “Now Aaron has a crazy mother, too,” he seemed very child-like, like he was another kid saying that. I’m starting to wonder if Not-Locke wasn’t actually a man when he was turned into whatever he was, but was actually a child, and never reached a maturity level to deal with his issues. Think of how children are just giant bundles of emotions and they feel things so much more than we do, and can’t express them so they just lash out... just like Smokey.
• Aw... Laura Ingalls in her Sunday best! Oh how I used to love Little House on the Prairie... what was that episode? Did she lose her dog or something? I think I actually remember her all dressed up like that for some reason.
• James brings the giant flower to Charlotte the same way he brought one to Juliet in “LaFleur.”
• Not only is Tina Fey on the island, but Vic Mackey is the guard at the bottom of the sub ladder. Dude.
• So... OK. Widmore’s been trying to get back to the island for over 20 years and now that he’s here he’s just sitting on a sub jotting notes, and not running naked with unabashed glee through the jungle? (OK, I can’t say I’m not THANKFUL that that’s not the case, but you’d think he’d be a little giddier about finally returning.)
• Sawyer tells Widmore not to touch a hair on the heads of any of his friends. He said the same thing to Locke in S4 when Locke took off with Ben and Hurley in “Cabin Fever,” and he threatened to kill Locke if he touched one hair on Hugo’s head.
• I was so scared Claire was going to grab Kate’s gun (she had one arm on it when she hugged her) so I couldn’t completely enjoy the moment, but watching it again I think Claire was sincere. And that makes me SO happy, because I really want Claire to be OK and for Kate to be able to take her back and see her son. And maybe Kate can remain an important part of his life.
• When Not-Locke says, “That’s terrible” after Sawyer tells him that all of the people on the other island are dead, I didn’t believe that for a second. He knows how they died.

Hurley’s Numbers
The number on the bottom of the Ajira wing had a 48 in it.

So Many Questions...
• So... were the other cops sitting outside while the bug was in the room listening to James have sex with the mark? Um... awkward?
• The brass plate on Miles’s desk says “Miles Straume.” Considering his father’s name was “Chang,” fans just assumed he went by “Straume” because it was his mother’s name. BUT he said that Charlotte “works with my dad at the museum,” so it would seem he and Pierre Chang are still together (unless by “dad” he’s referring to a stepfather). Why the different name?
• Is Not-Locke telling the truth when he says Sawyer is the best liar he’s ever met? Because during the rewatch, we noticed that Sawyer was actually a bit of a crap liar. Almost every character saw through him at some point.
• So wait... did Smokey bring people with Serious Daddy/Mommy Issues to the island? Is that something that is required of a Candidate?
• What’s in the locked room on the sub?
• Kate says they’re eating rabbit. Could it be one of Ben’s? Is it a reference to Watership Down, that in season 1 they were all like the little bunnies far from home, but now they’re eating those bunnies and this world is SO much more complicated than anything from that book?

Next week: THE EPISODE I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR!!!!! The origin of Richard Alpert’s eyeliner!

And finally, PLEASE please go and click on Chris Temple’s idea every day until March 31. He’s one of the regulars over here, it’s a great idea, and I want to show that Lost fans can help make a difference. All of the details are here.

While You Wait for Lost...

First, have you voted for Chris Temple's idea yet today? No... OK, don't worry, I can wait while you do. Just go here, and this post will still be here when you get back. Do-do-do... what are you waiting for? It's for a great cause and he's SO CLOSE and I know we can get him there!! (Oh, and please please if you have a blog please post this on there, too!)

My friend Chris L. (go check out his blog!) sent me the following mash-up that I thought was brilliant. This is a reimagined opening credits for Doctor Who, set to the Angel theme. It makes it look like a tragedy, with David Tennant as a brooding sad man...

And to celebrate the fact that I just got tickets to see Eddie Izzard at Massey Hall in May (YAAAAY!!) here he is doing one of my favourite sketches. This seriously makes me cry with laughter every time I watch it. I hope you enjoy, too! (And I hope I don't offend anyone with it!)

Lost Haiku: Dr. Linus

Hello my lovelies. Well, I'm officially back. No more running around to other countries, doing chats from afar, posting late, leaving you guys to yourselves, not responding to comments. I'm here, and here to stay until the end of the season. I can't wait to jump right back into Lost with you tonight for "Recon."

When I was in the UK, I met up with a friend of mine who got talking about my blog and how fascinated he was about it. He said he thought all of you were like my followers, not just online, but like disciples (well, he likened it to "Hitler's Germany in 1934," to be exact) and that whatever I said, you guys agreed with. If someone disagreed, you all tore them apart like a pack of wild dogs. I disagreed with him and said there's a difference between blind following and community, and the group I have here is a community, one that's nice to each other and (he doesn't watch Lost) if he'd actually read any of the Lost posts, he'd see that people disagree with me all the time, but they do so in a kind manner, and often convince me to change my own mind about something. He's an academic and is considering some sort of research paper on this blog. Hm. That might not be good. If he says anything bad about us, I'll set all of you on him like a pack of dogs.


Until then, I went onto YouTube and tried to find an angry Hitler rant of him disagreeing with a commenter on his blog, but sadly couldn't find one. If anyone knows of one, let me know and I'll send it on to him. ;)

Anyway, for my Canadian readers, a heads up that I'm going to be appearing as a guest commentator on Innerspace (Space Network) next week! I'll be chatting up next week's episode and mentioning this week's, and they'll also have me answering viewer mail. So tune in... I'll make another note next week about it. If for no other reason than to see how tarted up they make me this time. ;)

And now, without further ado, on to haiku about "Dr. Linus"!

I went to college.
So do not call me “Mister.”
It’s DOCTOR Linus.

I was wondering...
When Ben changed his father’s tank,
Was it nitrogen??

Richard: “I must go
To the Black Rock and die now.”
Me: “NOOOO!! No no no!!”

Superhero Jack!!
Will the tough-guy persona
Wash away the Jears?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Buffy on MuchMusic!

I haven't seen Buffy in syndication in a LONG time, so when I just saw the news on Whedonesque that Buffy is going to be syndicated on MuchMusic (in Canada) starting today, I was very excited!! Apparently the first five episodes of season 1 will air today starting at 2pm, and then after that it'll be on weekdays at 6pm. Every day. Wicked!! You can read all the deets here.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Reminder: Let's Help Chris!

I blogged a couple of weeks ago about one of our regular readers, Chris Temple, attempting to get a $50,000 grant to start up an arthouse coffee place in Sacramento, California, that would help showcase local authors while also giving free art lessons to kids. If he ends up in the top 10, he'll get the money. Right now he's moved up to 17th place and has held steady there, so I'm really hoping Nik at Nite readers can rally together and get him right up to the top and get this coffee house started! You can vote every day (and I have!) if you just go here and click on the link. It'll take a couple of seconds out of your day... let's see if we can do it. Can Lost fans help a fellow fan get his dream off the ground? As they say on Bob the Builder (15 times a day in my house), "YES WE CAN!!" You can vote EVERY DAY, so please do. I know we can do this!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Sayid Finds Lost

The lovely and amazing Sonshine Music sent this to me right before I left for London, and I didn't get a chance to post it. I flew back yesterday (and boy are my arms... yadda yadda) and so here it is! This makes Locke blowing up the Flame even more tragic!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

How Did I Miss This?!

Here's a big Easter egg I somehow missed! Thanks to Sam Wade for pointing out that Sawyer's been hiding the cliff's notes of the island in his tent:

Every parent's nightmare: That their daughter will grow up and be associated with a magazine called Booty Babes. Thankfully, I'm just associated with the book NEXT to it. ;)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

6.07 Dr. Linus

It’s... Dr. Linus.

I'm late to the game, and there are already 110 comments, but here we go anyway... I haven't read your comments yet, so here's hoping I'm not simply repeating everything that's already been said.

Whoa... Alternate Universe Ben is so SWEET!! I’m totally in love with him. I know he’s probably never fallen into anyone’s “palatable” list but I think he might have just moved onto mine (that one’s for Sonshine and Joan!) In an episode that showed once again that in the AU the characters are learning to sacrifice things for other people, it’s moving the series more to a final exploration of destiny vs. free will. In the AU, destiny still rules for now – no matter what people do, they still end up close to other characters from the island – but free will is there, too. Ben chose on the island to stick to his ambitions and Alex was sacrificed for it. But here, his quest for power isn’t as great as the way he cares for Alex, and he backs down. It’s an amazing about-face for this character. Perhaps in the AU he was never taken to the Temple, and therefore he still has a soul.

• Leslie Arzt!! And Ben calls him Leslie! HAHA! (How much do I love that no matter what reality we’re in, he’s always going to be a grumpy high school science teacher.)
• Locke speaking up at the lunch table, and telling Ben that if he cares so much about this place, and if the man in charge doesn’t, then he should step up. Brilliant tie-in with the other world.
• Another Lapidus patented zinger: “You make friends easy, don’t you?”
• Ben opens the door, “Alex!” and for a half-second I’m thinking, “Oh wow, he still has Alex and he must have broken up with his wife and...” “Hi, Dr. Linus!” “... and how strange that they just happened to... wait, Dr. Linus? What?!” I LOVE that in any timeline, Alex and Ben are linked. She’s his protégé here, not his daughter.
• “Cheese curds...” teehee!!
• Hurley and Jack are back!
• It’s crazy Muppet arms Richard! Only he’s looking a little less crazy-eyed. Just a little less.
• Nikki and Paulo reference!! I have to admit, my first reaction was, “NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!” but then I started laughing hysterically.
• Hurley asking Richard Alpert if he was a cyborg or a vampire. HAHA!! (and I love that Richard actually knew what a cyborg was!)
• “Linus, you’re a real killer!” :::shivers:::
• Ben: “Get me? For hhhhhhwhat?” Oh Ben. How I love you and the way you talk.
• Miles holding one of the diamonds! HAAAAHAHAHAHAHA!! Wait... does that mean he dug them up? Could they walk again as undead zombies of the island? NOOOO!!
• Widmore’s coming!!

• So THAT’S why Ilana took the ash... because she knew Miles could “hear” it.
• Ilana isn’t here to protect Jacob, as previously thought; she’s here to protect the candidates.
• Lapidus missed Flight 815 because he overslept. (Though that might have been caused by drinking, though he doesn’t say it.)
• Alex: “Isn’t that totally gross?” Ben: “Totally.” Haha!

Did You Notice?:
• Was anyone else yelling, “Run, Benny! RUN!” at the beginning? No? Just me?
• When Ben catches up to Ilana and Miles and everyone, he actually TELLS THE TRUTH. What is THAT all about?!
• When I first saw Principal Reynolds I was convinced he was a principal in a John Hughes film, and then realized no, it was in Real Genius with Val Kilmer.
• When Miles told Ilana that Ben killed Jacob, I was literally saying out loud, “Come on, Ben, talk your way out of it!!”
• In the original timeline Ben killed his father with poison gas... now his father requires a gas to stay alive.
• WHOA. When Roger was talking about how they’d been in the DI and they’d left my jaw just hit the floor. So this means that the bomb going off was NOT the event that altered and created the AU? Or was it? Or does the bomb going off mean that they made it so they couldn’t come to the island at all on the Ajira flight, and therefore Sayid wouldn’t have shot Ben? If that’s the case, then WHO dropped the bomb that reversed everything? That is probably the single most confusing thing I’ve seen this season.
• Ilana seemed upset that she wasn’t one of the candidates. Understandably so, too... does anyone else think that Jacob seems to taketh away far more than he giveth?
• Giacchino totally had new loopy goofy music for Hurley when he was in the jungle, right after Richard came to them. (Speaking of which, I haven’t said it yet but YAY GIACCHINO for Oscar night!! How much did I love that he was wearing the grape soda bottle cap pin from “Up” on his lapel??!!)
• When Ben was rifling through Sawyer’s things, he brushed over “The Chosen” by Chaim Potok. Quick Amazon summary:
Few stories offer more warmth, wisdom, or generosity than this tale of two boys, their fathers, their friendship, and the chaotic times in which they live. Though on the surface it explores religious faith--the intellectually committed as well as the passionately observant--the struggles addressed in The Chosen are familiar to families of all faiths and in all nations. In 1940s Brooklyn, New York, an accident throws Reuven Malther and Danny Saunders together. Despite their differences (Reuven is a Modern Orthodox Jew with an intellectual, Zionist father; Danny is the brilliant son and rightful heir to a Hasidic rebbe), the young men form a deep, if unlikely, friendship. Together they negotiate adolescence, family conflicts, the crisis of faith engendered when Holocaust stories begin to emerge in the U.S., loss, love, and the journey to adulthood. The intellectual and spiritual clashes between fathers, between each son and his own father, and between the two young men, provide a unique backdrop for this exploration of fathers, sons, faith, loyalty, and, ultimately, the power of love.
• I’ve got to do more research on the East India Trading Company.
• I am totally in love with AU Ben. Nikki ♥ Ben.
• “A promise is a promise.” I can’t take credit for this, but someone pointed out during the Globe chat today that that’s the same thing Locke said to Jin when he told him not to show the ring to Sun.
• Miles refers to the Annoying Duo under the sand as “jabronis,” and I’m pretty sure Sawyer called them that as well.
• When Alpert said he needed to die, I yelled, “NOOOO!” (I’m having that reaction a LOT in this episode!)
• Was anyone else thinking the school nurse was going to be Juliet? The moment Ben looked a little jealous about the principal having a fling with her, I wondered... but I was very relieved when she wasn’t. (Unless they’re suggesting in the AU the school is actually the island, and they’ll all end up there!)
• Nice one, Jack. You just go ahead and carry that kerosene lamp into the ship FILLED WITH DYNAMITE (these were my exact notes as I watched the scene, before I realized Jack was officially No-Fear Jack™!)
• Thank god the fuse stopped or Richard Alpert’s last image before death would have been the Jears.
• Jack is 100% convinced he’s right... only a couple of days after the last time he was 100% convinced he was right, and for all he knows he was actually wrong on that one.
• That thing Locke did with the shackles?! Whoa... it was like... a Jedi moment.
• The principal says he will “torch” Ms. Rousseau. Interesting use of words.
• I mentioned this in the Globe chat and I don’t want to sound negative, but why not just say, “fine” to the principal, have him write the letter for Alex, and then take him down next year? Ben’s got WAY worse stuff on him than he’ll ever have on Ben, and Ben can wait for Alex to go and make his move on the chair of principal.
• I seriously love Giacchino’s reunion music.
• The return to the camp reminded me of when Juliet was brought back... everyone rushed forward to hug Jack and Kate, but then Juliet hung back the same way Richard and Ben do here.

So Many Questions...
• When Ben was talking about Napoleon and Elba and the loss of his power “Without power it was meaningless, he might as well have been dead,” a chill went down my spine. Will he die at the end of the episode, either on the island or in the AU? Is it possible he’s already dead and died when he was a child before being taken to the Temple?
• What does Ilana mean when she says Jacob was the closest thing she ever had to a father? Did he take care of her the way Ben took care of Alex? What did he do for her that made her so loyal to him?
• Something I wondered about: Are candidates crossed off because they’re dead? Have we seen anyone crossed off who was actually still alive? Perhaps they’re not crossed off because Jacob lost faith in them, but because they’re dead. Perhaps he wrote all of them down, and then as the Man in Black/Smokey takes them out, he’s the one crossing them off. It’s like his own personal to-do list.
• When Miles says that Jacob cared about dying, was he telling the truth? Or was he just trying to get Ben into trouble?
• So how did Rousseau end up in LA? Does this mean she never went to the island in 1988? Were the numbers somehow stopped? When exactly did the rift happen in the timeline?
• Is Widmore the one Jacob meant when he said, “They’re coming”? Is he the person Jacob was trying to hail with the lighthouse? What side is Widmore on? Who will he align with when he gets there?

Original post:
Well, was that an awesome episode or WHAT?!

Sigh. I'm writing this on Monday night from London, UK, and of course I haven't seen it, nor will I have seen it when all of you have. They're making me pay for the internet by the hour here, so I doubt that I'll be able to watch it at all before my return Thursday night. :(

So, I open up the floor to all of you to comment to your heart's delight, and I'll probably have something up on Thursday. And feel free to talk about it openly without worrying about spoiling me; I'll just be avoiding the comments until after I've written my entry.

Have fun!

My Memories...

As many of you know, when I'm not writing books, I work in publishing as an editor. One day I got a cold call, which happens every once in a while when someone wants to call and pitch you their idea over the phone and find out if it's something you'd actually consider. The guy started talking about his memoir, and how he'd been working on it with someone and how he thought it was going to be a great story. I asked what kind of memoir it is, and he said it was about growing up and his job as a kid and problems he had and how he'd overcome them. I get pitched memoirs all the time, and while I think it's valiant and wonderful that people put down their life story for their families (what I would have given for my grandparents to have written their life stories for me... I actually would follow them around with tape recorders and constantly ask them questions about growing up because I didn't want to lose those stories), I think most memoirs are best kept to the family. But you never know, occasionally something comes along that's a whopper. So I said sure, I'd be happy to read through it. Well, he didn't have much of it written, he said, but he wanted to come and talk to me about how he could expand it. Sure, I said, are you in Toronto? Yes, I am, he replied, before saying, "I'm sorry, how rude of me... who am I talking to again?" "Nikki." "Hi, Nikki. I'm Corey Haim."

Wow. A blast from the past. The kid from Lucas. The guy whose posters had adorned my walls. He made me laugh in The Lost Boys. He was brilliant, and then he'd fallen apart with drug abuse. He hadn't been able to handle it and had become one of THOSE actors. He used to be one of my idols and then he fell apart and I'd wondered why this happens. And now he was talking to me on the phone.

I played it cool, and said, "Oh... hi, I didn't realize it was you." He laughed and was happy I actually knew who he was, and then we began chatting about the idea of the book. I told him that, to be honest, if he holds back on anything people won't want to read it. I said there have been lots of biographies about child stars who'd fallen apart and had come back again, and what he needed to do was reinvent the idea. I said, "If you could actually write a book that allowed us to actually see why you fell apart, tell us what was going through your head, make us finally start to understand the immense pressures these child stars are under and how moving into adulthood is such a terrible, yet inevitable thing, I think this book could do really well. And... if we do it right... it might actually help others." He liked that idea a lot. He told me he'd hooked up with another writer and he was really keen. I told him if he's in Toronto, to just give me a shout when he's got some time and come on in and we'll talk about it, just like I would do with any writer. He said he'd love that, he'd call me the following week.

He didn't call back.

About a year later, out of the blue, I heard from him again. This time he told me that he'd been really busy but he was really excited because he was working on a show called The Two Coreys that was upcoming, and he told me all about it, what it was going to be about, how they were filming it, and how it was going to put him and his former best friend, Corey Feldman, back into the limelight. He then said he was really keen to do the book again. I asked if he was still hooked up with another writer. He said yes, he was, and I said I'd really like to meet up with that writer. If you're busy, could you have him come into the office and talk to me? I asked. I wanted to talk to the person who would be writing it and get a sense from him that he thought Corey might actually come through with the book. Since his interest seemed to be awfully keen, followed by no interest whatsoever, and then suddenly really keen again, I needed to know that if I were to go ahead with this book, Corey wouldn't lose interest after two weeks, something I've seen happen with better-known writers working on memoirs. I didn't tell him all of this, and instead just said that I'd love to meet with the other writer and get a sense of what the book would be like. He said he'd love to come along, too, and meet me and discuss it. He said he was really really excited and he'd thought through everything I'd told him a year before, began saying a lot of it back to me, and wanted to discuss it. I said great, when's good for you? He said he'd give me a call back, and was just thrilled that I was still interested.

I never heard from him again.

About 18 months or maybe even 2 years after that I was emailed by a guy in L.A. who said he was an agent representing Corey Haim, and that Corey was interested in writing his memoir. I got on the phone to the guy and told him that I'd talked to Corey twice previously, and that I had been interested in the book but I wasn't so sure Corey was. I said if I could meet him I could tell him exactly what would be expected of him in the months to come, and he could look at everything and then decide whether or not he could actually do this. I asked how he was doing and he said the negative publicity from The Two Coreys had hurt him a lot, but he was doing well considering, hadn't fallen off the wagon, and was finding things to keep him occupied like art. I said that was great, and if the book helps keep him further occupied that would be a good thing. I added that I really hoped this is something he would want to do, but I needed some proof from their end that he would actually be on board for the long haul. The agent absolutely agreed, and he'd said that every time Corey talked to him about it, he kept mentioning me. I said that was great, let's set something up. Perfect, said the agent. I'll check with the writer and Corey, and get back to you.

And that was it. Never heard from the guy again, and Corey never wrote that memoir.

So when I logged onto the internet just before 5 tonight London time, I was saddened to see a picture of Corey Haim with the news that he'd been found dead.

Rest in peace, Corey. May you find the peace and happiness that have eluded you for a long time. I hope somewhere you're writing that memoir. I just wish all of us could have read it.


I just said goodbye to my friend, turned and sadly came back to my room, only to realize the Globe chat was about to begin in 5 minutes. I ran back down to the front desk, bought time online, and so I'll be over at the Globe chat, oh, right about now! Hope to see you there! Go here to join.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

While You Wait for Lost...

And more photoshop fun from TM Lawrence!!!

And finally, the screen capture that gave me this idea in the first place, as in, "Wouldn't it have been awesome for one of my books to be on there?" This one made me squeal with happiness!

Lost Haiku Time! "Sundown"

"Sundown, you'd better
Take care, if I find you've been..."
In my head all week.

"Catch a Falling Star"
Once a soothing lullaby,
Now stuff of nightmares.

"It puts the lotion
In the basket. It rubs the
lotion on its skin."
(that's for the many commenters who used that line in the comments!!)

"Do not worry, Claire.
I took him. And raised him. And...
He calls me Mommy."

"Oh, you did? Awesome.
Really, I'm happy for you.

"Sayid, there's still time!
Oh... oh good cripes. Um... backing
away slowly now."

Sayid's a hottie.
Redeem can't wait for him to
come to Toronto.

Keamy's like a goon
working at Satriale's.

Jin's tied up in fridge.
"What happened to you?!" "No English.
Wait... except for... BOAT."

Sunday, March 07, 2010

And... I'm Off!

Hello everyone! I'm heading out to the UK first thing tomorrow (Monday) morning. My hotel in downtown London says it has high-speed Internet, but that's what my hotel in Mexico said last week, so I figured I'd post this before I left to give you a heads up. I'm going to try to watch this week's episode from afar on Wednesday morning and see if I can post something really quick then (so it would go live probably around 3 or 4 a.m. EST and would be there when you wake up in the morning). I hope everyone is OK to wait until Wednesday morning, but just in case you're itching to discuss it sooner, I'll put up a holder post so you can start your chatting and then my post will go live. I was going to choose a couple of people to handle the post for me, but honestly, all of you are such great commenters I simply couldn't choose a couple. I'd have to choose 30 or 40 of you. And that could create a big of a blogjam.

I'm skipping out of the Globe and Mail chat, much to my sadness, simply because I'm meeting up with a friend in London (actually, he'll be my partner in presenting the paper at Slayage, and we're trying to write the thing while I'm over there) and it would be really tough to duck out at dinnertime over there to chat online for an hour. Instead I'll spend that hour relentlessly insisting to him that he NEEDS TO WATCH LOST. (He doesn't watch the show. He's a professor of English literature and popular culture. What is WRONG with him?! Feel free to post in the comments below your number one reason why he should be watching... I'll happily forward this on to him.)

Anyway, the fact that I don't get to chat with y'all in real time after a BEN episode is like not being able to chat after a freakin' finale. I'm so upset and wish it had been a Sun episode or something (not that there's anything wrong with Sun, but you know what I mean). And if you DON'T hear from me on Wednesday morning, it simply means that yet another hotel has let me down, and I'll be back online Thursday night.

Have a great week everyone!!