Most everyone except Emile De Ravin’s Claire Littleton returns for Season Five of Lost. Even some of the dead ones. To that point, when Season Five opens Locke (Terry O’Quinn) is introduced in a coffin and yet spends most of the rest of the season walking around alive (?). Some members of lost flight have returned to the real world, including Dr. Jack Shepherd (Mathew Fox), Hurley (Jorge Garcia) and Kate (Evangeline Lily), while others still stuck on the island are lost in time, with Sawyer (Josh Holloway) settling into the Dharma institute as one of its head security agents. Everything is in chaos, and it looks like those who left the island must return to salve the time-jumping. My review of Season Five of Lost on Blu-ray after the jump.
The show opens with everyone scattered over the country and over time, with some members, specifically the newcomers to island Daniel Faraday (Jeremy Davies), Miles Straume (Ken Leung) and Charlotte Lewis (Rebecca Mader) suffering the most from the constant change in time. John Locke seems to have achieved some sort of peace through his death and transference, but is also jumping around in time, so there’s something almost supernatural about him, while Sawyer settles in with Juliette Burke (Elizabeth Mitchell) to forge some sort of life. Dr. Jack is the worst off, slightly impotent, by the end of the fifth season, he’s like a Luke Skywalker without the force, no longer much of a love interest, and Sawyer has outclassed him every step of the way. It’s an interesting decision.
There’s a lot going on in Season five and a number of great twists and turns, with the best indebted to La Jetee (which was remade as Twelve Monkeys), but with a sick oedipal twist put on it. You also have some good supporting work, and all the other regulars, like Daniel Dae Kim and Yunjin Kim’s Jin and Sun Kwon coming back to the island after Sun thinks Jin is dead, while Naveen Andrews’s Sayid Jarrah is still the show’s best badass. Speaking of, you also have the wonderfully slimy Ben Linus (Michael Emerson), who we see in his youth taken from the Dharma initiative and given to the others of the island to help cure him and then at the end of the season comes face to face with Jacob (Mark Pellegrino). You also have the un-aging Richard Alpert (Nestor Carbonell) as the face of the others.
As a whole I think season five is one of the best seasons of the show. They know that they’re on the high road to wrapping up, so this seems the most focused the show’s been since its early episodes, where it was setting everything up. And what is going to hurt Lost in the long run is that there are a number of subplots and characters over the course of the six season run that just went nowhere, and added little. It would be interesting to see the makers go back and just shed some of the unnecessary episodes for a director’s cut run, because part of the fun of the series is how it takes so many unexpected twists and turns, and how fast it can move.
And while that’s the great fun of the show, it’s also its limitation. When all is said and done, as we head into Season six (the final season), it will probably have been a very fun ride, but they didn’t seem to cement the end game until somewhere in Season 4, and in that way the show is very much like a serial of old. We’re so far from where we started, and what mysteries have been solved have ended on sort of “eh” notes (the monsters in the jungle, the polar bears, etc.) and there’s been characters who didn’t go where perhaps even the makers wanted them to (Mr. Eko) that the show has suggested that it’s more fun to guess what could happen next than the actual ending. I could be very wrong.
But I also like what it’s done with the characters, and if the plot is essential a series of spinning plates, they’ve had some success with the love stories, and the strange couplings of Jack, Kate and Sawyer. They obviously watched some Star Wars, and Sawyer is definitely of the Han Solo cut, but it works well enough. I just hope in the final season they give Mathew Fox something to do besides mope.
The Blu-ray release of Lost Season Five came in the standard form, or in an elaborate package that came with a Dharma initiative initiation video tape, Orientation Guides to the Compound, Motor Pool, Security and Cafeteria, an exclusive CD of Geronimo Jackson’s “Dharma Lady” and two patches. The season is spread out over five discs with each episode in widescreen (1.78:1) and in DTS-HD 5.1 surround. The show was shot HD, and it looks incredible in this format.
As things are wrapping up, there are only two commentaries for this set, with producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse on “Because You Left” and writers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz “He’s Our You.” The Lost “Starter Kit” (5 min.) is a catch-up for all the important tidbits leading up to this season, while “Making Up for Lost Time” (14 min.) is a general behind the scenes on the season. “An Epic Day with Richard Alpert” (12 min.) is a day in the life of actor Carbonell on the last day of Season 5 principle photography. Relatively interesting, and only some trailer time. “Building 23 and Beyond” (12 min.) has Michael Emerson touring the post production facilities for Lost in California. “Lost on Location” (38 min.) is the best of the behind the scenes stuff, showing some goings on behind a number of the episodes, and the shooting. There’s the standard Bloopers (4 min.) and eight deleted scenes (14 min.) with the former relatively amusing, and the latter interesting but inessential. The best supplement is the mock-documentary “Mysteries of the Universe: The Dharma Initiative” (26 min.), which posits that the shadowy group has been running a long time, and how some people have caught glimpses of it, enough to be a part of a fake 1980′s show on such things. “Lost 100″ (19 min.) has the cast celebrating having 100 episodes under their belt with a very special cake. Also with the Blu-ray there’s access to the “Lost University” which offers more on-line content.