The Husband:

While we, the children of Saint Clare, have found the time to write about many of the biggest shows on television (and even some small ones), there is only so much time and energy we can spend on this site. The truth is, we watch a whole lot more than what ends up on the site, and since I watch most of these on my own and yet never find the ability to write about them, their absence is mostly my fault. But no matter. For those that fall through the cracks, I have here a grab bag of the 30+ shows I watch in addition to whatever ends up on the site. These are the ones that slipped through the cracks. And hell, I’m sure there are more I’m forgetting (and also not even bothering writing about, which tend to fall under instructional/educational stuff like anything on Discovery), so if you think I’ve forgotten something, please let me know. (And no, I don’t watch any CSI or L&O shows, so don’t even try to get all up in my grill.) Here they are, the missing shows of the 2008-2009 television season, in alphabetical order.

24

I really should have written at least some criticism on this season, but work piled up and I simply didn’t have the time. It started off as the most intelligent season with some of the most compelling political questions being thrown around (welcome to the show finally, “debate on torture”), but by the fourth time Tony twisted his alliance and Jack was infected with the disease, I kind of stopped caring. Great first half of the season, though, and I think Renee is the best new character in a very long time.

Adult Swim (Xavier: Renegade Angel / Superjail! / Squidbillies / The Drinky Crow Show / Metalocalypse / Delocated / Robot Chicken / Etc.)

Thank you, young people of Adult Swim (who I have spent some time with, don’t forget) for freaking my mind week after week, and giving alternative comedy a major boost in America. And for freaking out my wife.

A beacon of normalcy in a world of wackiness.

A beacon of normalcy in a world of wackiness.

Better Off Ted

It took me a couple episodes to latch onto the tone, but once I did I simply couldn’t get enough from this latest product of the mad mind of Victor Fresco. Check out some episodes online, then watch Andy Richter Controls the Universe (his previous show), and I guarantee you some of the oddest network comedy in a very long time. I still think Portia DeRossi is trying to hard, though, and should take a page from the book of Fresco mainstay Jonathan Slavin.

Castle

Bring it on, Nathan Fillion. Hypnotize me with your nostrils and your addictive but borderline-stupid mystery writer-cum-detective series. (Although how weird was that Judy Reyes episode? What the hell, Carla Turk?)

The Celebrity Apprentice 2

So sue me, I liked Joan Rivers. And the addition of the phrase “Whore Pit Vipers” to the television lexicon.

Celebrity Rehab (Sober House) with Dr. Drew

So help me, I can’t stop watching. It’s just a disaster. I will say, though, that I like the drama in the rehab far more than the sober house, as the latter seems to exist simply to destroy any progress the celebrities made in rehab. And now having seen all three of his seasons of Taxi, Jeff Conaway’s fall from grace is fishbowl television at its finest.

Dating in the Dark

Really fun, actually. I hope it gets a second season. I also hope that more matches will be made, and that people stop being massive failures.

Dirty Sexy Money

Everything I needed to say about the failure of the second season of this show can be found on this blog, and it ended its truncated run by turning itself inside-out by revealing that the show’s central mystery, who killed Peter Krause’s father, was a bust since he wasn’t dead after all. What the hell, Dirty Sexy Money? Oh well, your cancellation made room in Krause’s schedule for the much anticipated (by me) adaptation of Parenthood coming to NBC mid-season.

The Goode Family

It took a few episodes to find its footing, but by the end of its sped-up summer run, I was a major fan of the latest Mike Judge effort. (R.I.P. King of the Hill.) Vastly misunderstood by viewers who only watched the first episode, it, just like KOTH, found a middle ground between conservative America and liberal America and found the ability to make fun of both without drawing blood, choosing to love instead of hate. Some of the voice cast was misused (why was my beloved Linda Cardellini in the cast?), but as a Berkeley native, I had a blast relishing in mocking the stereotypes of my own people while rediscovering what it is I love so much about them. The bull dykes were also two of the most original characters of the season.

One Earth isn't just a grocery store, it's a way of life.

One Earth isn't just a grocery store, it's a way of life.

The Great American Road Trip

Any show that has two contestants debating over which is more correct, “y’all” or “youse,” gets major points in my book. A nice and forgettable summer trifle after a long, way-too-hot day. Silly, yes, but I can’t say it was bad. And it was a definite improvement over the similar family-based season of The Amazing Race. (I’m sure The Soup is really grateful for this show, too.)

Heroes

Oh god, kill me now. Volume 4 was a marked improvement over #3, for sure, but I just don’t care about anybody anymore. And yet I feel that I need to keep watching. It’s too late to give up now. There was one great episode this season, though, and that was the flashback one surrounding Angela Petrelli’s stint at a mutant internment camp. Why can’t they all be this good?

Howie Do It

Yeah, I watched it. Shut the fuck up. About one-third of it was funny, and as I watched it on Hulu at work, it’s not like I wasted any of my own time. Howie Mandel is savvier than you think, but I wish he would return to his wilder roots.

How’s Your News

This Parker-Stone produced MTV show revolving around reporters who are developmentally delayed confused the hell out of me initially, but once I realized there wasn’t a mean bone in its body it became a warm bit of fun. I want a second season, dammit. These are some of the most joyful television subjects I’ve ever seen.

I Survived a Japanese Game Show

Better than the first season, but I’m still glad I only watch this online while doing something else.

In the Motherhood

Worst opening credit sequence of the year. Some pretty funny material hidden underneath unfunny slapstick. Horatio Sanz got thin. Megan Mullally couldn’t find a rhythm. I still think Cheryl Hines is oddly hot.

Lie to Me

I unfortunately didn’t start watching this until July, and I wish I hadn’t waited so long. While gimmicky to a fault and not nearly as intelligent as it pretends it is, this Tim Roth vehicle about an FBI specialist who studies the subtleties of the face (OF THE FACE) is clever, compelling and well drawn. I’m not sure about the addition of Mekhi Phifer’s character, but we’ll see how it works out next season, especially with Shield creator Shawn Ryan at the helm of season two.

Life

This cancellation reallllly hurts. One of the unsung gems from the 2007-2008 television, this, the smartest network cop show in recent memory, took its great season one energy and hit the second season with all it had and came up with a compelling, hilarious, devilishly clever and gleefully violent run that was only marred by a major cast shift during the final few episodes. (I’m looking at you, Gabrielle Union. Your presence was what I like to call a massive failure.) A Zen-obsessed cop recently released from prison after serving over a decade for a murder he did not commit, this show had the best cases of them all. It also gave me one of my favorite hours of television of the year in an episode that revolved around a seductive assassin, fertilizer and pigeon aficionados. And at least the major serialized storyline (who framed Damien Lewis and why) got paid off in a major way thanks to the ever-reliable Garret Dillahunt.

lifeshot

My Boys

Putting PJ and Bobby together was a great idea, but your nine-episode seasons are too short to gain any momentum, and the spring training season finale was a bust.

Nitro Circus

Moronic glee.

Numb3rs

Man, did they put Charlie through the ringer. First, he nearly gets his brother killed with a miscalculation on his part, he questions his own validity as a mathematician and then Amita gets kidnapped just as he decides that he wants to marry her. Otherwise, another fine, if somewhat uneventful, of this show that never captured the glory of its über-nerdy first season. Also, thanks for all the great guest star work, but sometimes it gets laid on a little too thick, such as in “Sneakerhead” which brought together Bruno Campos, Patrick Bauchau, Dr. Edison from Bones and Eve. (And points for making the Liz Warner character actually bearable. I fucking hated her in season 4.

Privileged

So apparently the CW thought that their best idea ever was to get rid of this show, the smartest show on the UPN/WB merger since the Buffyverse, one that was technically pulling in bigger numbers than 90210, one that was a delight to watch and deeply addictive, and make room for what is sure to be one of 2009-2010’s worst new offerings, Melrose Place. I gotta tell ya, this cancellation hurts. While I wrote recaps and reviews of the episodes way into its freshman (and only) season, the looming axe, as well as a more heavily serialized structure, turned me off from writing on the final stretch of episodes, and I told myself that I’d only recap them if the show came back. Lo and behold, another Joanna Garcia vehicle has gone down the tubes. I’ll miss you oh so dearly, Ms. Too-Smart-For-The-CW Palm Beach satirical melodrama known as Privileged.

I hate to say this, guys, but I think Robert Buckley might be a showkiller. And that's sad, because he's so damn pretty.

I hate to say this, guys, but I think Robert Buckley might be a showkiller. And that's sad, because he's so damn pretty.

Rescue Me

I thought it was a great season, and thanks to an extended number of episodes (it didn’t air in 2008 thanks to the writer’s strike), the show was able to focus much of its energy on pages-long dialogue-happy battle-of-wits in nearly episode, which to be is melodrama heaven. Gone is the maudlin tone, returned is all the comic energy, and the stories seem to actually progress instead of just flopping around like a dying fish. Leary and Tolan deserve major praise for bringing the show back up to snuff. And now having seen all of Newsradio, I love any chance I get to watch Maura Tierney, although I’m still not going to watch ER. (I am proud to have only seen three episodes of that show ever, being a Chicago Hope fan.) Special shot-out to the Sean cancer storyline, if only to allow Broadway actor Steven Pasquale (husband of Tony winner Laura Benanti) the opportunity to belt out some songs in a handful of hallucination scenes.

Samantha Who?

One of the biggest upsets of the last two years was the rise and fall of this light-hearted, occasionally gut-busting amnesia sitcom that started off the talk of the town, only to waste away its final episodes after the conclusion of the actual television season. Ending on a shitty cliffhanger (Sam’s parents are getting divorced, so Mom is going to live with you and your formerly-estranged-but-now-love-of-your-life lover), we nevertheless found out who caused the accident that brought about Sam’s amnesia, Jennifer Esposito finally made it with the towel boy, and Melissa McCarthy continued to be one of the brightest stars of the year.

Scrubs

Like Privileged, I hesitated to continue writing due to the threat of its cancellation, but now it’s continuing on into yet another season (albeit with some major changes), so I really have no reason to stop writing about it. But let’s just say that while the hurry-up to conclude its many disparate storylines often felt rushed (those two Bahama episodes felt especially odd), the conclusion to J.D.’s years-in-the-telling tale was a lovely way to conclude the season. (No props for the awful awful Peter Gabriel song that accompanied his final walk down the hallway, as laughably bad as it was when I heard it in the remake of Shall We Dance?)

The Shield

I don’t have to tell you how amazing the final season was. Watch it. Seriously. You owe it to yourself to experience one of the hardest hitting cop shows of all time. Like The Wire, a Greek tragedy hammered into modern-day policework with some of the most finely drawn characters around. And oh man, did those final three episodes pack a major punch. Ouch, indeed.

Southland

Quite a bit like The Shield, really, had it followed Michael Jace’s beat cop instead of the Strike Team. A little too dour at times for me to really give a crap, and the sprawling ensemble needs to be cut down (which is what I hear it’s doing for the second season), but this L.A.-centered procedural has a lot going for it, not least of which its pitch-perfect direction. (I especially dig the long shots, including my favorite, which involved a cabin and a K9 unit bringing down a perp.)

Way better than dating Marissa Cooper.

Way better than dating Marissa Cooper.

Surviving Suburbia

A sitcom in serious need of finding one tone and sticking with it, this sometimes-sweet-sometimes-brutally-cruel suburban comedy worked as well as it did because of Saget as well as G. Hannelius’ performance as the precocious daughter. Still, all the jokes about disabled people, pregnant teenagers and strip clubs really didn’t mesh together with the clichés of the genre.

Survivor: Tocantins

I love Survivor, but this was one of the most boring seasons in its ten-year run. I don’t think I gave a shit about one person, and I simply couldn’t find anything compelling to write about. A waste of a good location.

True Beauty

The right person won, the losers got (mostly) schooled in this trick show designed to expose the douchery involved in modeling, Ashton Kutcher made another heroin-like show, and I concern myself for months with how they can pull the trick off a second time in the next season.

The Unusuals

When grading a cop show, I tend to focus on three things — the tone, the characters and the cases. A bizarre, pessimistic yet comedic take on all those wacky cops we’ve seen throughout the years all thrown together (one is deathly afraid of…death, one has a brain tumor, one talks in the third person, one is a closeted socialite, etc.) pushed into some remarkably dark territory, The Unusuals had tone and characters down pat, but suffered at the hands of some DOA storylines. But oh man, did the tone ever make up for most of the show’s shortcomings. Great ensemble cast, too, although I would have recast Eddie Alvarez.

Rather unusual.

Rather unusual.

Worst Week

A breezy and often hilarious slapstick comedy based off of a British hit, it could never regain its momentum after moving away from the initial “week” of the title. Kyle Bornheimer is a true find and made the more unbearable misunderstandings and embarrassing moments of the show (of which there were many) all the more palatable. I’m not the biggest fan of comedy based around humiliations, but this show found a likeable ability to have its characters not completely despise each other at every moment. This was, to say the least, very refreshing. Big points for giving me the biggest network TV laugh of the year (when Bornheimer wakes up his brother-in-law only to be thought a murderer) but major negative points for pushing back a major character-based episode into a weekend spot months after the show had already ended its run.

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The Husband:

I wrote that the premiere this NBC action/adventure remake/reimagining was “cheesy, poorly planned, strangely acted and built almost entirely around showing off KITT’s many features,” and that didn’t really change as the season progressed. The quality lessened almost immediately, to the point where the show kind of stopped being a guilty pleasure and started becoming pointless background noise, something to have on Hulu in the corner of your computer screen while you did virtually anything else at the same time.

Michael Knight and his best friend in the whole wide world!

Michael Knight and his best friend in the whole wide world!

Only a few episodes in, the show became somewhat painful to watch, not so much that it was bad or boring, but that it had lost a great deal of its potential in merely a handful of episodes. The worst was when Michael Knight 2.0 and KITT visited Mexico for no real reason other than to get the admittedly hot Deanna Russo into a bikini. The problem wasn’t that the show was base-level, sexist and brainless. Really, that’s its charm and also that of the original. It was simply the question that probably went through everybody’s mind:

How do you screw this idea up?

Come on. It’s a ridiculous hour-long actioner about the relationship between a headstrong man and his virtually invincible, transforming car that can pretty much do anything required by the plot. Give us at least two great car chases an episode, say some techie mumbo jumbo that doesn’t make any logical sense (both shows clearly lacked a technical adviser), have Michael punch a bitch out every now and then, and make some HAL-related jokes in re: KITT’s Val Kilmer-on-downers voice and his inability to grasp human behavior.

I could write this fucking thing in my sleep. In fact, I think I should try that someday. I need to put up or shut up, no?

After the ratings began sinking, Show creator Gary Scott Thompson (an NYU MFA graduate and playwright who also created Las Vegas and the Fast and the Furious franchise) took a good look at the series and then made some major changes. And they were good changes. What bogged down the first several episodes was all the slogging through government tasks and tactics, having Michael track down bombs and take down terrorists Jack Bauer-style in ways incomparable to better shows like 24 and The Unit, all while being yelled at by Bruce Davidson and Yancey Arias. Everything revolved in and around this little station, and way too much time was wasted on serious bullshit instead of the silly that gave the original Hasselhoff vehicle its charm.

So after a short hiatus, KR came back with a not-bad two-parter that not only killed off Davidson and (later) Arias, but also gave Sydney Tamiia Poitier (it’s good to have a unisex name to give to your daughter) career-ending injuries. The cast now down to four (Michael, Sarah and the two tech nerds), the show could finally become what it was always meant to be – a story about a roaming vigilante and his nutbag awesome car going from town-to-town solving people’s problems. That’s it. No government conspiracy hooey, just dumb, quick action.

And so the show improved immensely, so much that I was enjoying myself again. So what if Michael ended up taking down a fight club underneath a rural bar, or helped solve the mystery of a downed plane and a little boy’s knowledge of where a large stash of Bolivian cocaine had been placed (answer: buried quite hastily underneath a very convenient pile of dirt amidst a grassy field), or helped his favorite bar defend itself from millionaires who wanted the valuable minerals in the earth right underneath? It was fun, it was zippy, and it worked.

And it finally regained its sense of humor. Simply behold the final battle between KITT and the villainous KARR, voiced for no real reason by Optimus Prime himself, Peter Cullen. If this doesn’t make you giggle, we can’t be friends. (TURBO BOOST!)

Awesome, right? And compare that to these original series bits about the very same thing, just with much less of a budget.

This one benefits gloriously from its German dub and bizarre editing choices.

Seems like a good time to spend an hour, no? Well, despite it getting better episode-by-episode – shit, I was even starting to like the incredibly wooden Justin Bruening – it was still forced into another hiatus, and if the show gets renewed, the first five eps will be made out of leftover scripts from this season, which never had anything remotely resembling a season/series finale.

Should NBC renew this show? No. Now that douchebag NBC and douchebag Leno are taking away five full hours of primetime away from other shows, this is not something I would put at the top of the list to save. Not even close. Too bad Lipstick Jungle was officially canceled last week, otherwise I’d put that on the top of the hypothetical list and really get started on a save-the-show campaign. But now that the cast has already dispersed to such other projects as the Witches Of Eastwick series as well as the Gossip Girl spin-off.

But would I like this on another network, like USA or Sci-Fi? (Excuse me, SyFy, the network dedicated to syphilis narratives.) Absolutely. I don’t know how much Ford pays the show to sponsor their brand – and let’s be honest, the show is basically one giant commercial, with honking clown horns and streamers ablaze whenever KITT is in any of its many forms, which inexplicably includes a four-wheel drive truck – but it must cover at least half the goddamn budget. If not, NBC fucked up on that contract.

But if this is the end, I bid you adieu, Knight Rider. You just got cool a little too late. But hey, the Bionic Woman remake didn’t even make it that far. It was a dud for its entire run. And it didn’t have Val Kilmer literally phoning in his role. That was worth many a good laugh.

The Wife:

After two weeks with the Oceanic Six, we return to those still on the island this week right where Sawyer, Faraday, Miles, Juliet and Jin left off: at the well, waiting for John Locke to return. When Locke fell down the well, the group was cast back to a time when the four-toed statue loomed large over the island (to me, it looks like a statue of Anubis, who weighed the hearts of the dead against a feather to determine where they would reside in the afterlife – could this be a hint about the function of the island?), but when Locke turned the wheel, they were launched into the 1970s. Charlotte was gone, but their headaches and nosebleeds stopped. Without a real leader, Sawyer becomes the de facto head of this unit of survivors, suggesting that they all head back to the beach to make camp and wait for Locke to return.

Sawyer: Now we wait for him to come back.
Miles: For how long?
Sawyer: As long as it takes.


Utilizing the strangely out-of-place title cards from last week, we jump to three years later, where Mad Men‘s Jimmy Barrett interrupts the good time grooves of his Dharma partner and his girlfriend when he noticed that Horace Goodspeed is out doing drunken dangerous shit, like blowing up trees with dynamite. They insist that the only way to calm Horace down is to go get LaFleur, Dharma’s Head of Security who, as it happens, is James Sawyer. 70s Sawyer and 70s Miles (now called Ennis, I think) head out to grab Horace and put him inside where he can’t blow shit up and hurt anyone. Meanwhile, Horace’s wife, Amy, goes into labor, telling Sawyer that the two of them had had a fight.

Back three years earlier, a mournful Daniel tells the rest of the group that after the second flash, Charlotte just disappeared. That lent some credibility to the theory that his tampering with the timeline had begun to write her out of existence. As Faraday puts it, “She moved on. We stayed.” Moved on to where? I’d like to believe that that statement fits with the Charlotte-written-out-of-time theory, but that’s later disproven when Faraday sees a little redheaded girl playing in the Dharma camp, calls out Charlotte’s name and the child looks back at him. So, maybe the island was just done with her? Where does it put people it’s done with? Wherever Charlotte may be, Faraday isn’t all here, either, his mind clearly somewhat fractured by the grief of losing yet another loved woman to time travel.

On their way back to the beach, the group hears shots and they see a woman with a sack over her head, about to be kidnapped from the lovely picnic she was having by two hostiles with guns. Sawyer and Juliet go play hero, rescuing Horace’s future wife and killing her assailants. Amy starts to freak out about the dead men, insisting that they bury the bodies and bring back the body of Paul, her dead Dharma companion that she reveals to be her husband. She is afraid that the death of her assailants means a truce between her people and theirs has been broken.

On their way back to Dharmaland, Sawyer convinces his friends to let him create their cover. He tells Amy that he and his friends shipwrecked on this island on their way to Tahiti. In a daze, Faraday almost walks through the sonic fence, until Juliet pulls him back. They ask Amy to turn it off, and she appears to, only to zap them all when they cross the line, slyly revealing the earplugs she’d popped in to protect herself.

Another great time to wear earplugs: pretty much every moment of the day after this kid is born. (Just kidding! Babies are great!)

Another great time to wear earplugs: pretty much every moment of the day after this kid is born. (Just kidding! Babies are great!)

Three years later, Amy’s baby is both early and breach. The Dharma obstetrician tells Sawyer-as-LaFleur that she was meant to get off the island days ago in order to prepare for her delivery. Worried that Amy will die, Sawyer goes to find Juliet, now the island mechanic in charge of fixing up all those sweet-ass VWs, and convince her to come out of retirement and help deliver the baby via Caesarian. Juliet is reluctant, considering what little luck she had saving women and children when she was brought to the island under the cover of Mittelos “Lost Time” Bioscience. Sawyer wins her over by suggesting that maybe the thing she was brought here to correct hadn’t happened yet. As Juliet takes over the labor and delivery, Jin approaches (still named Jin, by the way) to give Sawyer the daily “looking for their people” report. He once again asks Sawyer, “How long do we look, James?” To which Sawyer replies, “As long as it takes.”

The AV Club’s Noel Murray wrote last week about Lost‘s reliance on repeated lines such as “live together, die alone,” “we need to go back!” and so on. I definitely kept that in mind this week while watching and noted the frequency of times the other Losties would ask their new leader LaFleur how long they should keep looking. It seems that, in Locke’s absence, Sawyer became the man of faith this week, assuming the Creole moniker of LaFleur perhaps to assume a little of the magic and mysticism that comes with Cajun culture. Or maybe he just thought it sounded pretty and believable. Nonetheless, his new name makes me think of the fleur-de-lis, a symbol widely associated with both monarchy and Boy Scouting. (Husband Note: And the celebrity-lookalike hooker service in the great film L.A. Confidential.) The symbol’s name literally means lily flower (like the last name of an actress who plays a certain flame of Sawyer’s), and is associated with the Virgin Mary, symbolized by the white lily – a woman who’s shown up on this show not only in the figure of Claire, but also as a placeholder for some heroin. However, in England, people mistook the name (because the English do not spell things well) as fleur-de-luce, or flower of light, and began associating it with the Holy Trinity. For me, the choice of name represents Sawyer’s faithful commitment to believing his friends will return to the island as Locke had, for lack of a better term, prophesized. It is appropriate to me that LaFleur would care so much to see Amy’s child be born, and also appropriate that he should keep such vigilant watch and a hope-against-all-hope that his friends will return. Without Locke, someone on the island has to be a bastion of faith. And Sawyer became that when he became good ol’ Jim LaFleur.


Juliet, by the way, is able to successfully deliver Amy and Horace’s baby boy, which made me immediately ask: who does that baby boy grow up to be? We know it’s not Ben Linus, which immediately made me horrified for the fact that whoever that little boy is, as he might not grow up at all, but might suffer the fate of being killed by Ben in the purge. How weird would it be for that kid to grow up to be Juliet’s lover, Goodwin? I don’t think the timeline is right for that, but it would be weird . . . like . . . Cordelia-fucking-Connor-on-Angel weird.

Three years earlier, Sawyer wakes up on Horace’s couch and, with Sawyer’s friends deferring all questions to him, he starts spinning the tale of how his current group of people found their way to the island. He tells Horace they were on a salvage mission to find the wreck of the old slave ship The Black Rock and wound up in the woods when they went looking for their missing crew member. Horace offers Sawyer and his people safe passage to Tahiti on the Dharma sub, but, ever faithful to his people, Sawyer tries to finagle another week out of the deal. Then the Dharma Alarm sounds and everyone is rushed inside as a torch-bearing Richard Alpert approaches. He demands to speak to Horace and wants to recover the bodies of his people. Sawyer demands that Horace let him take over negotiations, and the con man proceeds to swindle the immortal Alpert. Sawyer tells Alpert that he isn’t Dharma and so no truce was broken when he killed Alpert’s people in self-defense. Sawyer then tells him about Jughead and asks if Alpert remembers John Locke, for whose return he is so diligently waiting. Satisfied by Sawyer’s silver tongue, Alpert agrees to leave once he is given the location of his people’s bodies. However, he also asks for the body of the man his people killed. Amy, broken hearted over the loss of her husband, Paul, doesn’t want to give up his corpse, but agrees after taking his ankh necklace for herself. As a reward for saving everyone’s ass, Horace lets Sawyer and friends stay for two more weeks, which will clearly turn into at least three years. Juliet wants to leave immediately, but Sawyer convinces her not to go because its 1974 and her life will not be there for her.

I love seeing both of these miserable bastards actually be happy for a change.

I love seeing both of these miserable bastards actually be happy for a change.

Three years later, she’s still there, saving babies, working on cars and shacking up with Jim LaFleur. After three years together in Dharma bliss, the two are saying, “I love you’s,” which are basically just like saying, “Fuck you, Kate Austen.” In yet another nice bit of repetition, Horace wakes up on Sawyer’s couch after his night of drunken dynamite danger. Sawyer tells Horace the good news: he has a healthy baby boy, with the bad news being, of course, that he missed it. Sawyer asks him why he and Amy had fought that night, and Horace tells him that they got into a fight because he found Paul’s ankh in the back of Amy’s sock drawer (what man borrows socks from his wife?), and took it to mean that she never got over her first husband. He asks LaFleur if he thinks that three years is really enough time to get over someone, and Sawyer launches into a tale of regret about the one that got away, but assures Horace that he’s moved on.

“Is three years long enough to get over someone? Absolutely.” –Sawyer


Later, LaFleur gets a call from Jin. He leaves Juliet’s naked backside and rushes out immediately for the inevitable reunion with Hurley, Jack and, yes, that girl he totally thought he was over. I’ve never really given a shit about Kate and I much prefer the person Sawyer is when he’s with Juliet, but I really like the look on Sawyer’s face when he sees these people he thought he would never see again. Yes, he had faith that they would return, but I don’t think he knew how it would affect him when they did return, and what it would be like to see that woman he had loved for so long come back into his life. Poor Juliet. I hope that her three years of happiness doesn’t fall away because of Kate’s return and become a Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young lyric (“If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with”).

This was a good episode to remind the fans who aren’t that much into time travel about the show’s emotional core and its reliance on human drama, as well as a nice segue back into on-island stories, which are always, always, always better than Oceanic Six stories. I like it. And I hope Kate kept her promise and has news about Sawyer’s darling Clementine, which I maintain is what he asked her to do before he jumped out of that helicopter.

The Husband:

I think this was a wonderful episode. Yes, it explored the emotional core of the show, and as I learned from the beast known as the LindelCuse on that pre-s5 premiere special a couple months ago, this is what they spend at least 80% of writing sessions thinking about – not the sci-fi/fantasy aspects of the show, but character motivations and their own personal, emotional arcs. Yes, it did a great amount of summary for what happened in those three years between the end of the time traveling and the “present,” with the rise of LaFleur as its own tiny story. And yes, it, like last week, took a step back in order to give us as much backstory as necessary before it blasts off into insanity in the coming weeks.

But what I loved was that it gave Sawyer, for once, his first uplifting storyline of the entire series. We’ve been smacked with his terrible life again and again – his dead parents, his bloodlust on his search to find the original Sawyer, his destructive cons, and all the bad decisions he’s made on the islands – so it’s just such a breath of fresh air to see a happy, productive, non-thieving, non-growling James Ford/James LaFleur. His redemption as a person, or as much as what can be called redemption, drove my emotions in this episode more than most of Jack’s entire arc, and that’s impressive.

Hell, I teared up twice during the last ten minutes of the episode, first when he and Juliet kiss and the second when Sawyer spots Kate Austen coming out of the blue VW van only moments after revealing that he couldn’t even remember her face anymore. And these tears are for the guy who stole items out of people’s luggage for bartering purposes in s1. Come on, man. Give some respect.

I also appreciate any show that gives me a mixture of some great character actors from some of my favorite shows, including 24 (the beautiful Reiko Aylesworth), Mad Men (Patrick Fischler) and Friday Night Lights (Kevin Rankin). Oh Lost, you know how to please the cult TV show viewers.

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