NOVEMBER 21, 2010
AIRED: NOVEMBER 1, 2006
So basically, whenever you have a flashback episode, you’re going to die? “The Cost Of Living” is the third time in a “row” that a main character was killed off during their own flashback episode (after Ana Lucia and Shannon). From then on, I would get nervous whenever possible folks like Desmond, Charlie, Claire, or even Sawyer would be the focus of an episode, because it meant they could be dead by the end of it.
I will give the Lost folks credit though – they always managed to hide who was being written off. Shows like Desperate Housewives are constantly being spoiled by the press – if someone’s leaving, it gets reported weeks before. But not on Lost; with the exception of Juliet, everyone’s death came as a surprise (she was announced as being on V before her death episode aired), and none shocked me more than Eko, who I thought was being groomed to be a possible leader like Jack and Locke. It’s a damn shame, too – he’s the only one of the actors to leave the show and never appear again. He’d be mentioned from time to time (Hurley apparently saw his ghost a lot) but Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje would never be seen on the show again. Bummer.
Anyway, it’s at least a fitting wrap-up for his character, as we learn what happens in the aftermath of Yemi’s death, namely, that he pretty much started being a priest for real that same day. We also finally learn what his building of a church was all about – the one Yemi worked at was closed down after Eko killed some dudes there, so one of the parishioners told him he “owed” Yemi a new church. I bet Yemi’s really happy about the piss-poor glorified stick fort that he built before deciding to push a button instead. At least Charlie seemed to be trying to finish it up a bit.
He also gets the most brutal death of the show’s entire run. Everyone else got shot or fell off a cliff – Eko gets picked up and slammed repeatedly into trees and the ground by the goddamn smoke monster (it even makes itself into a giant hand!). I like to assume it was the writers’ way of getting back at him for ditching the show (he was reportedly tired of being in Hawaii) and screwing up their long-term plans for the character. Again – sometimes it’s better to just recast, guys. It didn’t hurt Fresh Prince of Bel Air when they got a new Vivian.
We also get our first appearance of “Patchy”, aka Mikhail (Andrew Divoff), who would go on to be a pain in the ass for the rest of the season. He even appears in Via Domus!
And Ben also reveals his master plan to Jack, which, as we already suspected, involves operating on his tumor in exchange for freedom (Jack should have played ball and demanded a whole bunch of stuff, I think). But Juliet doesn’t want him to do it, so she puts together this ridiculous scheme where she films herself playing INXS: The Home Game* while saying something else to Jack. Apparently, Ben didn’t think anything about this was strange – To Kill A Mockingbird without sound? Wouldn’t like, I dunno, Armageddon or something where people didn’t TALK MUCH be less suspicious?
Speaking of the weird things with the Others – anyone else think they set them up to be some sort of cult with this one? What’s with the white robes and burning the body at sea stuff? It was never really addressed again, so I guess it doesn’t matter. But that’s the type of little throwaway thing that annoys me as I go back and watch them all knowing how it ends – why’d they bother with this sort of stuff and never really follow through on it?
Pretty jam-packed episode, huh? I didn’t even mention Goddamn Paulo’s adventures in the bathroom. Hell, there’s even a deleted scene that explains what Kate and Sawyer were hauling rocks for in the first place (the runway that we see in Season 6). I guess it evens out with episodes like the one where Claire tries to put a message in a bird’s claw (i.e. worthless).
Where are we?
*Yes, yes, Bob Dylan did it first... the INXS one is the one that popped in my head during this scene.