Thursday, May 24, 2007

The Snake in the Mailbox

Charlie Pace — never my favorite. Among the plentiful Losers, as I like to call the cast of Lost, Charlie was an “always the bridesmaid, never the bride” type who, following derring-do in the pilot, slunk into the background. Following the resolution of his heroin addiction plotline, Charlie seemed to just spin around Claire, forming the closest to a nuclear family that the show had to offer. Thus, his death didn’t come to a surprise, in my opinion, since anyone familiar to the show should know the writers so often depicted family interactions as being rather toxic and fragmented.

Following last night’s season finale of Lost, I have to say that I feel a sense of relief, rather than — ahem — loss. Charlie’s much-foreshadowed death struck me as tragic but fitting, even heroic in his last-minute scrawling of “NOT PENNY’S BOAT” on his hand in an effort to warn Desmond that Naomi — a.k.a. the girl who fell from the sky — may not be the savior the Losers had hoped for.

Furthermore, the show didn’t end this season on as much a jaw-dropping cliffhanger as the previous two seasons did. That’s a plus, in my book. Sure, the faithful must now agonize until February over the notion that the Losers do, in fact, escape Four Toe Island at some point. Based on Jack’s appearance in his “flash forward” — as opposed to the flashbacks that mark every single preceding episode — not everyone who escapes is better off for doing so. How can this be? I have no clue, nor do I expect to for the next year or so. But I can just happily ponder that. It won’t occupy the amount of mental energy the week-to-week chain of surprises and mysteries did.

I have to ask again, however, if the Lost writers had a grudge against certain groups: namely Mancunians and black people. In one episode, Lost dispatched its two characters who hail from Manchester — Naomi and Charlie — just one episode after the pair bonded over their shared hometown. Granted, Naomi isn’t necessarily dead one the ground, but a knife to the back doesn’t bode well. Even less so for the blood pouring from her mouth.

Naomi — who looks like she could be Hispanic or Indian or any number of races but whose last name “Dorrit” leads me to believe she’s black, much as Marsha Thomason, the actress who plays her is — marks the most recent in a long list of dearly departed black characters. First, Michael, shortly after he shot two characters to death, left the island with Walt, then Eko was smashed to death and Miss Klugh took a bullet in the chest. The sole black character with a speaking role is now Rose and God help the writers of Lost if they knock her off too.

By the way, Lost fans posting online have posited that Naomi Dorrit’s name is an anagram for two phrases that are descriptions of her as a person: “maid in rotor,” which perhaps refers to her introduction to the show as having leapt from a helicopter, and “raid monitor,” which could confirm that Charlie and Ben’s allegations that she has a far more sinister job than as Penelope’s scout wanting to help the whole cast home.

1 comment:

  1. i've missed all of your lost insight! watching the show with my mom is not quite the same.