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Thursday, May 20, 2010

My Top 12 Lost Episodes EVER! #2 - The Constant

Wow, even though Evie gets all the attention, Claire is one underrated Lost hottie. I'd like to Emelie her de Ravin if yaknowwhati'msayin.

Um, anyways...

Continuing the countdown to Lost’s final episode. Here’s my top 12 so far:
#12 – Two for the Road
#11 - Some Like It Hoth
#10 - The Shape of Things to Come
#9 - Ab Aeterno
#8 - The Candidate
#7 - The Long Con
#6 - Deus Ex Machina/Do No Harm
#5 - In Translation
#4 - Greatest Hits
#3 - Through the Looking Glass
and number #2 is……..

The Constant
Season: 4
Character-centric: Desmond

I admit, I haven’t seen this episode in a while, but the general feeling I got after watching it was: wow, this episode is the shit. That last scene where Desmond reunites with Penny is certainly one of the most heart endearing moments in ANY television program I’ve ever seen. This episode has everything, and it rides on an incredible performance by Henry Ian Cusack as the forlorn Desmond.

When Desmond’s problem with time started in season 3, it was a bit confusing. Even as a hardcore Lost fan, I had a tough time keeping track of what was perceived as a jump to the past and what was a vision that Desmond had. Lost sometimes keeps things so ambiguous that a nice explanation is sometimes too much to ask for. With The Constant, the episode does a wonderful job clearing this up.

This episode is Desmond’s journey, and Desmond’s journey alone. The entirety of it was dedicated to explaining his unique ability of time shifting, and the viewer was not distracted by any island drama or freighter busting. It was nice because Desmond’s story needed the whole episode to explain.

As it turns out, his story is not too complicated. Basically, Desmond can slip consciousness into other times. One moment he’s in 2004, the next, his mind is transported into his body in 1996, thus allowing him to act out the past. However, there are a few side effects of this manner of time travel, amnesia and uh, death. Yeah, bummer dude.

Help comes in the form of Daniel Faraday, because you know, physicists know the answer to everything. To avoid death, and future time jumps, the answer is simple, Desmond must find something that is constant, something that was there in the past and here now so it can help his mind find a point of reference and make sense of his time shifts. Without this point of reference, his mind literally cannot take the confusion and he will eventually die…just like Fischer Stevens!

That constant is Penny. Most of the episodes centers between his quest to reach her in both 1996 and 2004 so that Desmond can finally find some stability. It’s an emotional roller coaster for sure, as Desmond’s painful history with Penny and her father is explored. But like all good rides, the best part of it is the peak thrill where the build up finally pays off in one adrenaline rush.

That rush comes in the form of a phone call. When Desmond finally gets that number, and finally calls Penny in 2004, it is exhilarating. Desmond is happy, you are happy, and moments like these, television or no television, are moments that we can all relate to. That desperate journey one goes through to finally make that connection, these are moments we all wish to have, and moments we remember forever.

Desmond’s time warping would eventually set things up for season 5 when all the characters start jumping through time and feel the pain of Time Aneurisms. In the end, most of season 5 goes back to The Constant. This episode is a true gem in an underrated season 4. It stands as one of those Lost episodes that make you feel, make you remember, and make you enjoy.

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