Thursday, January 20, 2005

Lost - Special 

Eyeball cam on... Michael!

In a nutshell: Michael was a doting father when Walt was a baby, but his girlfriend Susan left Michael and took Walt with her. After much sacrifice and many years, she died and Michael was once again a father. Michael fights with Locke and once again blames him for his problems with Walt. But they bond and understand each other later, as oft occurs on The Island.

Boone has cut his apron strings to Shannon, and she's none too pleased with the situation. Sayid and Shannon discovered that the maps are an overlapping set of maps that when put together show a particular spot on the island. Kind of like on Angel when they had to overlap the writings of what Wolfram and Hart sucked out of Lorne's memory. But the one of the island is not drawn to scale, so it's also not particularly clear where it is.

Walt apparently can create animals out of thin air with the help of his preadolescent emotions, and this time it's a polar bear, which aids in the Michael-Locke bonding. He also demonstrates a knack for knife-throwing, under Yoda-Locke's guidance. Kate and Jack make brief appearances as exposition. Charlie fights temptation and loses, eventually reading Claire's diary. As we all knew by the fact that Claire was in the previouslies, she shows up by the end of the episode, looking rather bedraggled and bewildered. And noticeably thinner. Looks like the possibly evil kid's being raised by someone else after all.

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More details, should you care to read them:
Michael continues his frustration with his lack of instant success at parenting skills, and continues blaming Locke for everything. Locke, of course, recognizes that Michael is just trying to sort his way through the tangled jungle confusion of parenthood, while Hurley thinks Michael just plain hates being a father.

Through the flashbacks, we discover that Michael was a young artist who sacrificed his career so his girlfriend Susan, who refused to marry him could go to law school and begin her career. He doted on baby Walt, but apparently Susan became dissatisfied with Michael. She accepted a job in Amsterdam, and took Walt with her. She eventually married another attorney, Brian, and they moved first to Italy and then Australia. Just after Michael declared his intention to reclaim Walt (before the move to Italy), he stormed away from the payphone and right in front of a car. Give the man his prize for blind storming: shattered leg, surgery and a year in rehab. But Susan flew all the way back to the States to visit him in the hospital (after she hadn't heard from him for a COUPLE OF MONTHS), and even brought him a little something - a request that he relinquish his parental rights so Brian can adopt Walt. Nice.

Over the years Michael continued writing to Walt and sending him drawings, but he never heard from Walt. Meanwhile, we fast forward to life down under, and see that Walt may have an ability to mold reality when his emotions are in turmoil. He wanted Susan and Brian to look at the cool and very rare Australian bird in the book he was studying for school, and when he shouted out, "You're not looking!" a bird just like it immediately flew into the sliding glass door and fell dead on the deck outside. Kind of like in one of the first shows when the mysterious polar bear appeared just after Michael dissed Walt's spanish comic book, which featured a polar bear. Coincidence? I think not.

Anyway, Susan dies suddenly of some sort of unnamed blood disease, Brian leaves Walt with the nanny and shows up on Michael's doorstep, pretty much begging him to take Walt back. Brian only adopted Walt because Susan wanted that, and he wanted Susan, but the kid freaks him out. Wicked nice. Michael shows up in Australia, alone, and introduces himself to his son. The nanny shows more concern than Brian, who didn't bother to mention any of this to Walt. She gives Michael a box that contains all the letters and drawings he had sent over the years. Michael takes the high ground and tells Walt that Brian didn't have a choice, but that Michael is Walt's legal guardian and he made the decision. He also stretches the truth beyond its elastic limit when he tells Walt that Brian will still be part of his life, and he'll write, and visit when he can. And that Walt will have his dog. "But Vincent is Brian's dog." Pause. "Brian said you could have him." Go Michael!!! The high road can be so tiring.

Back Island-side, Walt and Michael continue to bicker, Locke tells Michael that he should stop treating Walt like a child, and let him "realize his potential" with the assistance of The Island. He also points out that Walt is "special" and "different." This kicks off Michael's brain-based tripwire, because Brian had also told him that Walt is "different." Michael burns Walt's spanish language comic book... and guess what comes next? Yep, Walt runs away and gets chased down by a polar bear just like the one in the comic book. I thought maybe the polar bear was one of the animals from Crazy Danielle's research ship, but the appearances are a bit less than random. Locke and Boone help Michael rescue Walt, and Michael shows Walt some respect and trust by giving him a big knife with which to protect himself. Michael and Walt exchange manly nods of the head, and Michael and Walt bond over the box o'letters that Walt's mom had kept from him.

In other news: see the nutshell summary above. Plus, Hurley organized another golf tournament, with the winner getting the last of the deodorant sticks. Yay - an acknowledgement of limited island hygiene!

Coming next week: Rerun of Sayid and Crazy Danielle. Maybe I'll post on it, since I didn't the first time around.

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Posted by Beth Henderson at 10:35 AM