Lost 5.8: Lafleur

It’s really a shame I didn’t get to write my thoughts on this episode sooner, because again … I really liked it. But work is work, and time is scarce … so you’re getting a look back at “Lafleur” a day late from me.

My wife and I both really liked this episode for a few reasons. First and foremost, it featured Sawyer, and it shed him in a different light … different than the “guy with no shirt who spouts off one-liners” character that he’s been reduced to in the past two seasons. Besides his courageous leap from the helicopter last season, Sawyer’s character has gotten little “beef” in the story arc, and this week’s episode changed that — and in a positive way. (Sawyer has always been a rough character with a good heart … we got to see just how much of a good guy he can be).

Another reason we liked it — it was a nice break from the sciency time travel theme that’s made our heads spin the past seven weeks. True, this episode did jump back and forth between 1974 (the year Locke finally stopped the time warps and left the island) and 1977 (the year the Oceanic 6 find themselves back on the island). But the science was kept at a minimum this time.

Instead, this episode went back into the love theme that’s kept many of the non-geeks so enthralled with this series. In “Lafleur” — the French (NOT Creole) last name Sawyer made up when he, Miles, Juliet, Daniel and Jin joined up with the Dharma Initiative after quitting the time leaps — Sawyer and Juliet develop a relationship, one they apparently had three years to develop. We see a calmer Sawyer, one who’s mellowed in his three years of somewhat normalcy. If you’ll recall back when he was sick and taken care of in the hatch a few seasons back, he was amazed to wake up in a real bed … only to learn (disappointedly) that he was still on the island.

More than anyone, Sawyer’s wanted to leave the island and lead a simple life … which ironically, he never had. He found that life with Dharma, which is why he asked Juliet to stay (she had the option of leaving in a submarine) .. and in his three year’s time, he slowly got over Kate.

Of course, by episode’s end, Kate, Jack and Hurley are escorted to Sawyer by Jin, and those feelings toward Kate seem to rush back to Sawyer when he sees her again. He doesn’t know Kate is possibly pregnant with Jack’s baby, and …. wait, see? Sounding like a soap opera, right? Where’s the talk of time travel, religion, destiny and science?

Like I said … this episode was a welcome shift. I’m sure next week, we return to the whole “raison d’etre” in an episode entitled “Namaste.” But I liked this episode. I like that Juliet (who had feelings for Jack) seems to have fallen madly for Sawyer, who tried to convince Dharma’s Horace that his wife could love him just three years after she lost her first husband and used Kate as an example.

Other things I liked:
• Sawyer’s conversation with Richard Alpert
• The glimpse of the statue (the same statue we saw four toes from way back in Season 1)
• More of a backstory to Dharma’s history with the “hostiles”
• Daniel seeing a young redhead whom he believes to be Charlotte (though as Lostpedia points out, Ben said in an earlier episode Charlotte was born in 1978 … four years after this).

Other questions:
• We know the Oceanic 6 and the islanders are in 1977 now, but what year are Ben and the crew/passengers of Ajira Flight 316 in?
• In Season 3’s episode, “The Man Behind the Curtain,” we learn of Ben’s growing up in the Dharma Initiative before finally taking it over. Did this happen before 1974 (would have had to happen in the 1960s or early 70s, looking at Ben’s age), which would mean Ben was in Dharma for three years with Sawyer, Juliet, Jin, etc. Wouldn’t he have remembered them?

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2 thoughts on “Lost 5.8: Lafleur

  1. Seriously Billy, you’re about the only other Lost geek I know. Got to keep the recaps coming.

    Although gotta say, I hated this episode. Watching Juliet kiss Sawyer was just icky to me, like watching him kiss his mother. And their whole relationship seemed so forced. I hope they break it up soon, just makes me squirmy & uncomfortable.

    But then, I’ve always favored the Kate/Sawyer part of the Kate/Jack/Sawyer triangle.

    And maybe this is how Ben knew so much about them all when they first got to the island? And shouldn’t there be a baby Milo running around someplace? Boooo, waiting two weeks to find out….

  2. You pretty much covered our impression/take-aways from this episode…. I too got a real kick out of Sawyer and Richard’s conversation. Richard surely couldn’t have been totally surprised by what Sawyer said, but then again, he seemed certainly intrigued. Oh and the comment about the eye-liner was a funny nod to what has always been on everyone’s mind *laugh*

    It was a ‘fun’ episode but not too many great reveals, just mostly expansions on events we’ve already seen foreshadowed or previewed, so a little disappointing from that perspective. I was hoping for a little more meat. Although the question about ‘Jughead’ reconfirms that the nuke likely plays a greater role at some point.

    And is it just me, or are they packing even MORE commercials into the ‘1 hour’ episode. I swear I feel like I’m only getting about 30 minutes worth of real new material by the time we wade through the episode ‘recap’ at the beginning(waste of time IMHO) and then the actual commercials. Thank goodness for DVR, but I still would like more actual viewing time.

    And hooray for finally showing more than a truncated lower leg of ‘giant statue’. Pretty cool. Nods to Ramses(see link below) and other Egyptian-ish links? At least one actor has suggested as much to look for in future episodes.

    The ‘Charlotte moment’ was a heart-string pluck, and effective at that. But the time line question remains.

    I think we’ll have to wait until the near end of the series to really find out what/when Ben knows/knew, but I wouldn’t be surprised at all that he already knew the Oceanic folks. That may be part of why he was so adept at manipulating them early on.

    I too am bummed about a two week hiatus, but whatcha going to do 🙂

    Al

    P.S.

    Citing Watchmen on your recent “Rant” conversation, as you likely know, the producer of Lost is a real fanboy of Watchmen and there are some parallels between Lost and Watchmen.

    I was going to sit down for a minute and try to pick out obvious parallels myself, but of course someone has already done it 🙂

    http://lostpedia.wikia.com/wiki/Watchmen

    http://www.lostblog.net/lost/tv/show/the-lost-watchmen-theory

    I’m sure there is even more. And then again, even if unintentional, Alan Moore even realized his Watchmen core story wasn’t unique about 2/3 of the way through writing the story when he realized that ‘The Outer Limits’ had produced an almost identical story-line decades before. There is a nod in the last issue of Watchmen(incorrectly often cited as a graphic novel) to this TV episode.

    So, either by design or circumstance, it seems many good stories are so fundamentally shaped by our common experiences that they aren’t completely unique. That’s OK though 🙂

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