Last week, I was freaking out about the prospect of “Lost” losing Libby, the angelic clinical psychologist who graced the shores of some unnamed island in the Pacific for a brief period this season. As you’ll recall, last week’s episode, “Two for the Road,” concluded with long-missing survivor Michael putting a bullet in the gut of both Libby and Ana-Lucia.
My rationale was that Libby couldn’t die because she hadn’t undergone the spiritual redemption that corpses like Boone, Shannon and Ana-Lucia had. True enough, Libby wasn’t dead when the following episode began. She was just vomiting blood. In the end, Libby did die, though. She lingered long enough to have quasi-boyfriend Hurley apologize for sending her down into the hatch rather than going himself and then whimper out “Michael.” Her friends, of course, didn’t put it together that Libby was naming her murderer and merely told her that Michael was fine. She shot a look of outright horror, then passed away.
Just like last week with Ana-Lucia’s offing, Michael Ausiello of TV Guide posted an explanation of the death of Libby on his blog immediately after the episode aired. Apparently, the writers put Libby on the wrong end of a gun simply because they had run out of ideas for her. They knew they would be killing Ana-Lucia, but because her character is more or less unlikable — and let’s be honest, she was a bitch — they killed Libby in an effort to make the act all the more appalling.
I’m slightly irritated that a show that banks of the fact that the writers have a plan — a show that would like us to think that every small move is building to something — would kill a character they recently introduced merely because they couldn’t think of something to do with her. And I don’t like that poor Cynthia Watros didn’t get to act in her flashback, as every other major character has, and therefore only got to appear all dirt and bedraggled.
The fact of the matter is, however, that I genuinely like “Lost” and couldn’t stop watching if I wanted to. For the moment, I’m going to assume that Libby’s death is acceptable because by breaking the rules of death — first redemption, then the dirt nap — the writers pulled a fairly decent surprise on all us viewers. Also, Ausiello writes that Libby’s not gone for good. Cynthia Watros may be on a new sitcom next season — and God bless you in that endeavor, Cindy — but she’s still appearing in future “Lost” installments in the flashbacks of others. Notably, she’ll be appearing in this season’s finale in the flashbacks of long-missing Desmond. So it’s not like I’m Libbyless for eternity.
This season’s penultimate episode airs Wednesday, and I just made a new “Lost” buddy this weekend. I’m still on board, but you need to watch yourselves, guys who write “Lost.” If this whole thing turns out like the last half of “Twin Peaks” I’ll be pissed.