LOST 6.5: Two Sayids to Every Story
- Thursday, March 04, 2010
You just let it in! -- Lennon's last words
I know. -- Creepy Dark Sayid's first words
Well, it was high time for a showdown. But it wasn't high noon, and it wasn't midnight. Nor was it dawn. It was "Sundown," the beginning of night, the time where it will be the longest until we again see the sun. Considering the strong Egyptian themes on the show, it's a powerful metaphor. Ra, the Creator-Sun god has disappeared. Ra's closest ally is Ma'at, the embodiment of order and truth, and the figure some believe the personification of Lady Wisdom in the biblical Book of Proverbs is based off of. Night vs. day, darkness vs. light... and order vs. chaos. This last bit is one I meant to get to last week in my comparison/contrast of the Ladder and the Lighhthouse. We do find the same candidate names in both places, but in one they are quite orderly, and in the other, chaotic. Doubtful that one mind is responsible for recording both groups of names.
And speaking of chaos and order, these concepts are important not only in all Creation myths, but in most of the world's good storytelling. It was hard to "love" this episode because of how it left me feeling - unsettled, unsure, sad, like our team is breaking up. E-vil is winning.
But of course, so many great stories must go this route. Conflict has to happen. If LOST were a movie, we wouldn't have to sit around a week feeling as we do; it would have been just a 10-15 minute segment of screen time that advanced on into the good guys winning, or, to put it in its better, proper literary phrasing, "order restored."
So sit tight. Order is coming. Be patient and move past...
THE DEMAND FOR ANSWERS
The first on-island shot of this episode involves Sayid marching into Dogen's chamber and, you got it, demanding answers. He gets some too, but... do they satisfy? Don't they bring up more questions? Can't the cycle just keep going forever?
It's enough to make one ask of himself whether he is watching the show for the joy in the journey and the richness of the tapestry, or merely to find what's hidden behind it. Remember, sometimes the Man Behind the Curtain just isn't all that amazing a truth. I mean, what's so great about all the answers? We can ask this question in terms of how the search for them has served the Losties (it kinda hasn't), how it has served the audience, and how it serves humanity, which could very well be one of the many points our beloved show has been making all along.
Sawyer wanted answers. They were promised (though not exactly delivered yet to our knowledge), but is he better off? Sayid demands answers. Is he better off knowing what he knows? Or would having died have been a better fate for him? It's worth asking. In fact, one frustration I've had with Kate (and continue to have) is how she can remain so focused on tangible, earthly, self-motivated tasks and self-preservation despite the many amazing and miraculous things she has witnessed since landing on this island back in 2004. Even in this episode, she hangs from a ladder as a VICIOUS SMOKE TRAIN races above her head, and later, there is only, okay, let's pick up a gun and follow these creepy people. Hers has never been a quest for answers. Which as I said, has frustrated me, but now I am thinking perhaps her attitude is serving as a clue or key. There's something to Kate's willful agnosticism and focused-on-what-she-can-know-and-control mind, and I can't help but think these qualities may yet help her play the heroine, the one who quite possibly rejects BOTH Smokey and Jacob, and sets all her compadres free from their little game... Oh, I wouldn't love the metaphorical religious lesson of such an happening, but I could see it going there.
For our own part, let me just encourage you: if you are frustrated because you are only in this to find out who Adam & Eve are, what the smoke monster is, and why Richard doesn't age... fine. You're GOING to get those answers, assuming you hang in there long enough to get them, having complained your way along, thus robbing yourself of richness on the way. But also, think back to some of the major mysteries of the show thus far:
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