2000's, Daniel Dae Kim, Elizabeth Mitchell, Evangeline Lilly, Henry Ian Cusick, Jeff Fahey, Jeremy Davies, Jorge Garcia, Josh Holloway, Ken Leung, Lost, Lost Season 5, Matthew Fox, Michael Emerson, Naveen Andrews, Nestor Carbonell, Rebecca Mader, Terry O'Quinn, Yunjin Kim, Zuleikha Robinson
Following on from the unexpected and riveting finale of Season 4, Lost Season 5 continues the groundwork set by it to contribute more shocking twists and turns in this saga. It may become a bit too complicated at times, but it’s just so addictive to watch that this quibble will most likely forgotten as the season progresses. Spoilers will follow in this review.
What we last saw was Ben(Michael Emerson) turning a mysterious wheel which made the island vanish from view, Locke(Terry O’Quinn) had assumed the role of leader to ‘The Others’ and the freighter had blown up, supposedly killing Jin(Daniel Dae Kim). The Oceanic Six were adjusting to their new lives back at home, but were still being plagued by the pull of the island. It appears, according to Ben that the island will never let them go and they are to return as part of destiny. The present of Jack(Matthew Fox), Kate(Evangeline Lilly), Hurley(Jorge Garcia), Sun(Yunjin Kim) and Sayid(Naveen Andrews) is explored as we watch them realise that they must return to the island they fought to get off. Meanwhile on the island the people still there, Sawyer(Josh Holloway),Juliet(Elizabeth Mitchell) Daniel(Jeremy Davies), Miles(Ken Leung) and Charlotte(Rebecca Mader) realise that what Ben has unleashed is a continuous jump through time. One minute they are in the present, the next minute they are experiencing the history of the mysterious island. The jumping through time soon seems to herald the arrival of dire consequences as uncertainty rises. As the Oceanic Six return to the island, it appears it is going to be awkward and enigmatic all over again as they have to face their alleged destiny.
The first thing to note about Season 5 is the heavy usage of time travel. In some aspects, it increases the impact of the story to the audience but it can also get more than a little confusing to keep up with. I can understand why certain fans of the show become a bit disillusioned with this season because of the confusion of certain aspects. I agree to some extent about the confusion, at certain points I was really unsure about what the hell was happening, but the character development and mystery kept me interested in this eventful season. Our characters are drawn back together and watching them you see that you’ve come to relate to them and care about what becomes of them. The script cleverly plays with the reasons why the island needs them back and teases the answers out slowly but surely with mysterious effects. I liked how the history of the DHARMA Initiative is intertwined with our characters, and how after time travel, Sawyer and some of the others integrate themselves into the community. The various characters who appear later on such as Eloise and a young Widmore add to the mix of enigma and strangeness. Music is again another highlight of the show as it drives the narrative forward with urgency.The jumpy editing was beneficial to the constant shifts in time and neatly links in the theme of changing destiny. I must mention that Lost Season 5 is filled with emotional moments that will really be devastating to watch. One of these is the death of Charlotte, because of the various shifts in time beginning to aggravate her mind. Daniel watches as the woman he cares for slips away in his arms and we see his guilt at knowing that something like this would happen. The other is Daniel’s death at the hands of his own mother Eloise in the past timeline. His unexpected and heartfelt end also functions as a way of tying up some of the unanswered questions of the season. Both the work of Rebecca Mader and Jeremy Davies ensures that although their characters were only in the show for a short time, they will most certainly be remembered.
Our ensemble cast really steps up here to deliver exceptional performances. Terry O’Quinn really does some amazing work as Locke, who is killed by Ben early in the season but strangely enough seems to have come back to life again. He must now embrace his destiny and protect the island, but what is the mystery surrounding this alleged figure of John Locke? Michael Emerson adds more layers to Ben, showing he is still a manipulative liar but also a very strong ally with important information that could save everyone.Matthew Fox is great as Jack, whose leadership begins to slip when he is transported back into the 70’s. Josh Holloway really fleshes out the character of Sawyer and shows us the inner turmoil and eventual happiness he finds with Juliet as they pursue a relationship. Elizabeth Mitchell continues to impress as the resourceful Juliet, now in a relationship with Sawyer in one of the many timelines. She shows us how Juliet has finally found happiness but is dragged back into the various troubles of the island because of the survivor’s return.Evangeline Lilly portrays Kate as a complex woman, torn between her love for Jack and the mystery of the island. We get to glimpse the maternal bond she has developed with baby Aaron and how no matter what happens, she is always on the run from something in her life. Jorge Garcia and Naveen Andrews continue to deliver fine work as Hurley and Sayid. Yunjin embodies the undying love for her husband and her refusal to believe he is dead. As it transpires, Jin is in fact alive and in the 70’s timeline. Speaking with a better command of English and tougher than ever, Daniel Dae Kim manages to make Jin one of the best characters on the show. Ken Leung impresses again as the sarcastic medium Miles, who has unfinished business with someone in the past on the island. One point that I will make is that I wish that Henry Ian Cusick had more prominence to the story with his character of Desmond. Don’t get me wrong, whenever Desmond appears it is always riveting, but Season 5 unfortunately doesn’t use him efficiently enough. Jeff Fahey adds dashes of humour as the returning pilot Frank.The supporting character of Richard, a high member of ‘The Others’ is given more prominence in this season after a number of guest appearances in the past seasons. The seemingly ageless Richard is portrayed with spooky resonance by Nestor Carbonell, who gets some wonderful scenes with Locke and Ben as they deliberate the fate of the island. The new character of Ilana, an alleged bounty hunter is introduced in this season and she is shaping up to be an enigmatic puzzle of a character. Portrayed with sexy, self-assurance and fierce determination by Zuleikha Robinson, it will be interesting to see what more her character can contribute to this mind-bending show.
Season 5 may get off to a confusing start but stay with it as the various threads weave together to make for intense, emotional and mind-blowing television.