Friday, January 13

Lost Friday - "The 23rd Psalm."

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Season 2 - Episode 10 - "The 23rd Psalm."

Finally, another Lost Friday is upon us. We have much to discuss. Happy Friday the 13th, by the way.

Table Of Contents:
ACT I - The Skinny, courtesy of Wikipedia.
ACT II - The Numbers, courtesy of the CDP.
ACT III - "The Hunting Party" preview, courtesy of me.

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("Hello, Eko here. When I'm not running deadly drug gangs in Nigeria or conducting sermons on a messed up island, I'm on the CDP!")


Wow. After the 5-week break, I really didn't know what to expect the Lost crew to bring to the table for the much-awaited episode 10. As it turns out, they hit the ground running, with the first of many new episodes leading us into yet another wild new direction.

Wikipedia, give me the skinny; and make sure it's full of grammar errors and poor paragraphs!

Claire introduces herself to Mr. Eko and sees that he is whittling scripture into wood. Upon seeing this, she mentions to him the virgin mary statue that Charlie has been carrying. Mr. Eko becomes panicked and immediately demands to see the virgin mary statue. "It's just a statue" says Claire. Mr. Eko breaks open the statue and shows Claire the heroin inside, responding with "Just a statue?". She begins to lose faith in Charlie when she discovers his secret. Mr. Eko demands that Charlie take him to the place where he found the statue. Charlie takes him to a tree and claims that he found the statue under the tree. Mr. Eko becomes upset and demands that Charlie "Take him to the plane". Charlie notices that Eko has inscribed psalms and scriptures on the stick he carries.

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("Stop building your stupid churches in my village!")

In the flashbacks we see that when Mr. Eko was younger, Nigerian guerillas/drug dealers would come to his village and take the children (to fill up their ranks). They grab Mr. Eko's younger brother and try to force him to shoot an old man. The younger brother hesitates, so Mr. Eko takes the gun from his brother and shoots the man. The guerillas are pleased with this and ask him his name. He replies, "Eko." The leader says that Eko is a "born killer." They take Eko, leaving the brother and the other children (which is what Eko hoped they would do.) Eko's cross is torn from his neck by the leader. "You won't need this anymore." he tells the boy.

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(Eko says a silent prayer to the God of Cornrows.)

In the next flashback, we see that Mr. Eko has become a drug dealer of Nigeria. He visits a man who has heroin and offers the man money for it. The man reluctantly sells him the heroin, and tells Mr. Eko that "It's true what they say about you. You have no soul." Mr. Eko proceeds to slit the throat of the man and his assistant, but lets the man's son live, saying "tell all your friends that I let you live".
In the next flashback we see, Mr. Eko visits the church in the town that he was taken from. His brother has become a priest, and is trying to sell statues of the Virgin Mary to raise money for a polio vaccine for the village. Mr. Eko asks him for a plane, because only foreign and missionary aircraft are allowed to fly out of Nigeria. He claims that he will fly the drugs out of Nigeria (and away from their people) and give his brother the money for the polio vaccine. His brother tells Eko that he loves him still, but refuses to help. His brother now wears the cross that was torn from Eko's neck.

In the next flashback, Eko approaches his brother again, asking simply for his brother to sign papers that make Mr. Eko and two other men priests so that they can fly a plane themselves. His brother refuses at first, but Mr. Eko tells his brother that if he does not obey, Mr. Eko whispers that his two friends will burn the church to the ground. His brother reluctantly signs.

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("Angelina Jolie is pregnant with Brad Pitt's baby? Scandal!")

Charlie takes Mr. Eko further into the jungle, complaining that Mr. Eko ruined his relationship with Claire and that Mr. Eko shouldn't judge him because it was his brother that got him addicted to heroin. Charlie loses his way, and Mr. Eko tells him to climb a tree. Charlie reluctantly obliges. While he is in the tree, there are explosions, and we see the black smoke that formerly appeared in Exodus, Part 2. Mr. Eko faces the black smoke as John Locke did, despite Charlie telling him to run. The black smoke approaches Eko, who stands his ground. Eko stares fearlessly at the cloud for a few moments, and as our camera angle passes through the cloud, we hear what sounds like computer-like chatter.

There also appears to be dark images flashing inside the cloud (some of the flashes can be seen if the show is played in slow motion or paused. The images are from Eko's past: the man he shot, his mother, his brother, a church, a crucifix). Suddenly the cloud pulls back and disappears. Eko and Charlie find a parachute in a tree, which leads to the corpse of the Nigerian man dressed as a priest that Boone and Locke found in Deus Ex Machina. He opens the man's shirt -- we assume looking for the cross. When he realizes its not his brother, he says a prayer, telling Charlie that the man "saved his life".

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(The CDP would like to thank the nerdlinger that captured this frame.)

In the final flashback, we see Mr. Eko and his two friends dressed as priests boarding the plane. Mr. Eko's brother drives up to the plane and tells him not to leave. He is soon followed by the Nigerian Military. Mr. Eko's two friends open fire onto the military, and one dies when the military fire back. Mr. Eko's brother tells them to stop, but they shoot him. Mr. Eko carries his brother into the plane and tells his friend to get in. His friend does, but kicks Mr. Eko away from the plane before he can get in. As Eko watches the plane carrying his wounded brother fly away, the military approach and mistake him for his brother because he is dressed as a priest.

Mr. Eko and Charlie find the plane. Mr. Eko finds another corpse inside. He opens the shirt and finds the cross around the body's neck. Eko tells Charlie that the man inside is his brother. He gives Charlie a Virgin Mary statue "for the one he broke" and burns the plane, reciting psalm 23 from the Old Testament. Charlie asks Eko if he is, in fact, a priest himself. Eko pauses, then smiles softly and puts the cross around his neck. "Yes," he replies, "I am a priest."

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("I was baptizing a baby, and before you know it, my hand went right through his soft spot.")

Meanwhile, at Michael's request, Locke teaches Michael to use a gun. Michael then asks Kate if he can have her shift at the computer. She agrees. Michael talks to Walt, who first asks if Michael is alone, and then claims Michael has to come for him, and "they are coming back", but before he can say anymore, Jack appears and talks to Michael, saying that everyone cares about Walt. Charlie apologizes to Claire, but Claire tells him to leave. The episode ends with Charlie in the jungle, opening a hiding place to reveal that he has five additional Virgin Mary statues. He places the one that Mr. Eko gave him with the other five.

In a pre-closing scene, several survivors are shown progressing with island life, as Kate gives Sawyer a haircut, Jin and Sun introduce themselves to Ana-Lucia and present her with a fish, and Hurley helps Libby set up shelter, both giving flirtatious glances to each other.

Thanks, Wikipedia. You make my job a lot easier. Make with the numbers!

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(One of these things is a bad-ass black mass that menaces all in its path. The other is the smoke monster.)


4. This was obviously a huge episode for a number of reasons. Most importantly, we got a good(?) look at the 'monster,' or 'security system,' or 'messed up black smoke that's blowing up trees and sucking people into the sky and spitting them back out.' When you wait so long to see something like this, it's really easy to be let down once it's finally in front of you. Honestly, my jaw was dropped. Every time you think you'll get a question answered, they hit you with an even bigger question. Just like the revealing of the hatch, you only end up with more questions once it stares you in the face. Brilliant.

So, what is it? Well, it could be a lot of things. Sharp-eyed TiVo nerds noticed that Eko's life seemed to be flashing before his eyes inside of this thing, which leads to a lot of theories. Can this thing read thoughts? Is it all in your head? Is it in control of your fate, including the decisions you've made that got you to this point? Is is made up of things that haunt you from your past? Eko clearly wasn't scared, even though he should have been. My theory? It's a psychic roving tire fire that has become self-aware.

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(The monster sounds electronic. Nothing funny here, just an observation.)

Speaking of which, he had the same reaction that Locke did the second time he came into contact with it. His 'looking into the eye of the island' revealed his destiny to him; he must have liked what he saw. Bear in mind that Locke wasn't so happy the first time he saw the thing, so the idea that there's multiple 'security systems' swirling around the island is still a possibility. Word. Perhaps only 'bad' people should be afraid of it. Maybe those you haven't yet repented or confessed their faults.

Personal note: When the 'monster' appeared on the screen, I was enjoying a wonderful Oktoberfest beer in a lovely glass that I received in a set for Christmas. In that scene where the camera was circling around it, my mouth instinctively fell open, spilling beer down my shirt like I was sky-high on novicane. Some fans feel that this move was a bit too 'sci-fi;' illogical and too far-out. I don't think so yet; at least not until we start to get some decent answers.

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(I'm going to hell for that dead baby joke I told earlier. Sorry about that.)

8. Mr. Eko. What an amazing character. Another victim of the island drawing him in with a seemingly impossible chain of events. Knowing Eko, we shouldn't confuse coincidence with fate, as we now realize that this series of events is much like the one Locke was explaining to him in Episode 9. Remember Locke asking Eko what the odds were of the plane breaking apart in two different sections of the island, only to have the people (as well as the missing piece of the Orientation tape) meet back up? Eko now understands destiny, just like Locke did when he laid eyes on the monster. The relationship between the two of them will only get more interesting, and lead to more of a power struggle between them, Jack and Ana Lucia.

Another cool Locke/Eko thing is that we still have yet to hear the whole story with them. We don't know why Eko was on the Oceanic flight, which was from Australia to L.A., mind you. We also don't know the whole story behind Locke's paralysis. Those stories will have to wait, as I'm pretty sure Jack gets to share more of his flashbacks in next week's episode.

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(This is what happens when George W. Bush tries to make toast.)

One of my favorite movies is Pulp Fiction. Not only is it entertaining, but it tackles the concepts of biblical retribution and redemption. Those who repented were saved, and everyone else got wasted. This is a huge underlying factor on Lost, along with the concepts of fate and free will. How this rakes in 25 million viewers a week is beyond me; especially considering that it's on ABC, which is home to some of the worst shows on television. Eko was a total and complete badass in Nigeria, but I'm assuming that he realized the error of his ways shortly after watching his brother save his life. More to come.

15. Michael and the computer. Hmmm, this is a tough one. The theories are bouncing around the message boards, ranging from the logical to the absurd. Is it Walt? Is it the Others? How can he communicate when the Orientation tape specifically tells him not to? How can he communicate when Locke himself demonstrated that he can't enter anything in until the clock reaches 4 minutes?

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(Age/Sex/Location? Michael/Male/Hatch. You?)

Well, did you ever stop to think that he's not communicating with anyone?

It's probably all in his head. The castaways are starting to see all sorts of things from their past and present on the island (thanks to the fog monster, apparently), and most of them make no sense. More than one person has seen Walt. Check. More than one person has heard the whispering voices. Check. Sawyer and Kate both saw the horse. Good. Nobody else has seen the communication on the computer, and it even disappeared when Jack showed up to talk to Michael. Ruh-roh.

Judging by the previews for next week, Michael will continue this conversation (real or crazy), understand that Walt is in danger, and set out to find him. This will set up Episode 11, "The Hunting Party," giving us an old-school Season One walkabout. I can't wait.

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(Three years, and Desmond didn't touch so much as a dallop of ranch? What a weirdo.)

16. If you're stranded on an island with limited resources and next to no food, why in the name of all that is good and holy would you blast apart an entire gallon of ranch dressing? Come on! Weren't there any coconuts or empties lying around to shoot? As a lover and hopeless addict of ranch dressing, watching this scene was far more upsetting than Boone and Shannon's deaths combined. What has ranch ever done to hurt anyone? Its only crime was being born delicious.

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(Oh, the ranch-manity! So many bland salads will result because of this.)

A lot of people were worried that the black smoke would turn off casual viewers. They should be worried about a full-scale ranch-lover's walkout. If they kill an innocent can of mandarin oranges next week, I'll be writing a sternly-worded letter.

23. Charlie's Higher than a kite, or is he? As much as we'd like to believe Charlie's claim that he's not using drugs, he has been hoarding quite a stash since he discovered the Mary statues. You can't trust an addict on an island full of smack; expect a painful relapse in a couple weeks. Remember when he was singing that Kinks song to Jin on the beach? He seemed a little off there, and you might have your explanation in those statues. When he defiantly destroyed the bag of dope in front of Claire, he knew darn well that he had a bunch more in his stash.

None of this really bothers me, though. During the scene, I looked over to the Missus and remarked, 'Why isn't everyone doing heroin? I mean, why not?'

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(Collect all five! Impress your friends with your smack collection!)

42. Another clip show? Hooray! After 5 weeks off, it made sense (well, advertising sense, mainly) to devote another hour to recycled footage and Special K commercials. I like how they synched up the hatchlings and tailies stories together. It made more sense to do that in recap form, and brought to light a lot of underlying issues that we'll see over the next several weeks.


The previews for next week's episode, 'The Hunting Party,' look really nice. As we dip more into Jack's fading marriage, Michael conks out Locke and sets out to find his boy. Judging by the ultra-creepy preview, they run right smack into the Others camp. The whispered line, 'This is our island' was nuts.

Well, that's enough for me. I need a nap.

If you missed out on any Lost Friday posts this season, here they all are for you, in quick-dissolving capsules:


If you like what you see, sound off in the comments section. Thanks for stopping by. Oh, and you should bookmark this page, too. Seriously, don't be an idiot.

Wow, I really come off like a jerk in this thing. Geez.
When don't you? Psht.
Oh, don't act like you read it. Pwwsssht!

If anything, read the hilarious captions. They're hilarious.
I did read it. I figure I'm not going to watch the show, I might as well pretend to care. I like how you brought back the GW toast comment. That's classic CDP there.
Yeah, it all comes full circle when you run out of ideas at 11pm on a Thursday. Lost really brings out the best in people. It's the TV equivalent of Christmas. Or, since I'm talking to Aaron, alcohol.

There's a dinosaur on the island, so you might be interested in it after all.
The TV equivalent of alcohol with a dinosaur, you say? Maybe I should check this out.
When Eko didn't get on that plane with his brother... Oh man. Once they started going into his old story, I figured he had to be on that plane. Once again, Lost makes an ass of my umption. I need to re-watch those scenes with the smoke monster. That's crazy.

Also in TV... The Office this week was pretty over the top in a good way. Probably the best portrayal of a person who milks minor injury for attention that I've ever seen on TV.
I actually saw the Office and My Name Is Earl last night when I was at my parents' doing laundry. I enjoyed both.
Watching Lost is like watching a drunk dinosaur hitting on your best friend at a wedding reception. You can't blink for a second, or you're going to miss something awesome.

Paste, if you look at my old Lost Fridays, you'll see a wonderful track record of horrible predictions that make me want to delete the whole lot of them. It's what makes the show fun, unless everyone who reads this thinks I'm a fool, which is almost certain.

The Earl/Office one-two punch is sitcom TV's saving grace right now. The montage of Earl punching all of his bosses out was great, and Dwight's consussion was even better. I kept my recording of the Office just so I could watch it again. The reason Michael burned his foot made me laugh for about a minute.
I cracked up when that dude got out of his car and puked all over the back window. Vomit is almost always funny in my book. At least when it's on TV. In real life, it's more disgusting.
The best part of that scene was that it was so unexpected. The pace was so hectic when Michael was yelling on the speakerphone, you thought it would end with Dwight taking off to rescue him. But instead, it just got worse. Way worse.

For a while, Dwight was acting all outgoing and whatnot, then he started to lose it. The whole scene with Michael in the bathroom was great, too.
I liked that Roy didn't get Pam a real iPod... And I liked when Michael was on the phone to his mom explaining that he didn't call Jan because she'd get too worried and make a big deal out of it. And the property manager in the wheelchair, "Let me stop you there... and leave."

I'm curious to see how Ana Lucia is going to fit into the whole Jack/Kate/Sawyer love triangle.

Locke and Eko will battle to the death on top of a mountain for the season finale. That's my prediction, and I'm certain it will come true.
Michael calling his Mom was great. Some other highlights:

1. "Dwight, what's your middle name?"


2. Michael: "What do I put down as reason for visit?"

Jim: "Concussion."

(Michael looks puzzled and scratches something out.)

Jim: "Wait, what did you put down?"

Michael: "Bringing a friend to the hospital."

3. Jim spraying Michael and Dwight in the minivan.

4. "That's the movie 'Big', Tom Hanks isn't disabled in that."

Michael: "Uh, kid growing into a big person overnight, that's some kind of abnormality."

5. Dwight: "You can't fire me; I don't work in this van."

6. Michael on the speakerphone insisting that Dwight doesn't come and get him.

7. Michael explaining the rules of 'shotgun.'

8. Michael: "How long does it take you to do something simple like brush your teeth?"

Building guy: "I don't know, about 30 seconds."

Michael: "See people? That's like 3 times longer than it takes me."

9. Michael: "Aww, a minivan?"

Jim: "Well, she's got a kid."

Michael: "Yeah, and she's divorced, she's never going to get anyone driving in that thing."

Dwight: "Where are we going?"

Jim: "Chuck E. Cheese."

Michael: "Oh, man, I'm sick of Chuck E. Cheese."

Sorry, I had to get all of that out of my system.
On the Lost front, I think that the Smoke Monster will work his way into the love triangle somehow.

Locke and Eko should play Jeopardy to determine superiority. Or maybe a decathalon, I don't know.
I'm glad they went with the whole drug lord thing for Eko. For a second I was wondering if we were going to find out he was the Nigerian businessman responsible for all those emails. That would have been too spooky.

Totally had the same reaction when they shot the ranch dressing. I just kept thinking, "Hurley's gonna be pissed!" I mean he was the one who wanted to blow away the food in the first place!

That Office ep was the funniest one yet. It was insanely funny. When Jim kept spraying them with the water I seriously couldn't control myself. Although Dwight puking on his car was funny too.

Both of these shows are great for the same reason. The Details.
Most of the crap on tv is so prepackaged they might as well spoon feed it to you. All the great shows aren't afraid of a little subtlety.
I appreciate that you got that out of your system. I might add:
"Pam I need you to come butter my foot."
"I have Country Crock..."

So on the trailer for next week's Lost, there's this deep voice that says, "This is our island." or something like that. I can't wait.

So is Arrested gone for good?
In an amazing tie-in. Dwight Shchrute gives us his take on Lost in his blog.

I think it pulls a lot of loose ends together.
Hubby, you have it backwards. The first time Locke looks into the eye of the island, he says it's beautiful. The second time he's scared shizmless. You have it the other way around.
I don't know why I didn't catch that.

We're getting closer to having actual links people would make terrible BLAMmers.
I just have to add that I also freaked when Michael began aiming at the Ranch dressing. "No, not the Ranch dressing! Dammit!"

I also burst out laughing about the Country Crock comment on the Office. That was hilarious! It's so funny how Michael trails out at the end- "I have Country Crock...."
I almost couldn't stand the whole wheelchair scene; Michael is such an ass that it's unbelievable.
"Greetings! My name is Mr. Eko, and I want to invite you to join me on a SIX MILLION dollar investment."

Most of the Office cast have their own blogs. Do a Wikipedia search for it, and they're all linked there. Really good stuff.

I'm glad I wasn't the only one concerned about the ranch dressing. I'm sure Dharma has some really tasty goods.

As far as next week's Lost is concerned, it looks like they stumble right into the Others' camp. All those torches went off at once, and the 'this is our island' line gave me the chills. I've been looking forward to this episode since it was announced.

The Arrested Development rumor is that FOX will air the final four episodes during a 2-hour season (presumably series) finale on Friday, February 10. We'll have to wait and see.
So here's the deal. They should sell the heroin to the Others (first taste's free natch). Soon they'll go from getting oranges and fish for heroin to getting children in exchange. Horseheads always want to sell you their kids. Then they can kill them while they are wonked out on the smacky smack. It's the obvious next step.
I think that will be the plotline when Darren Aronofsky directs his episode later this year.

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