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Special

January 25, 2010

Another solid character episode. This is Michael/Walt centric, and finally lays out Michael’s long-simmering frustrations with Walt and Locke’s relationship. As not a lot goes on, plot-wise in this one, I’m going to move directly to the “grading scale.”

Island mythology: 4 out of 10. Another polar bear conveniently appears to put Walt in peril and the Black Rock is mentioned a few times, in addition to discovering something new on Rousseau’s maps of the island. I’m giving this probably more of a score than it deserves, but some long-mysterious things are touched on here, if not fully explained. Benefit of the doubt.

Philosophical concepts/themes: 3 out of 10. Walt is referred to in this episode as being “different” and “special,” which is a through current in the series. Also, the usual “daddy abandonment” theme is present here as well, albeit in a slightly different form.

Character development: 7.75 out of 10. Michael’s backstory with Walt is delved into, which gels admirably with the on-island storyline, the little that there is. Boone makes the final break from Shannon here as well, and Locke and Michael’s tumultuous relationship comes to a head and is resolved, for all intents and purposes (at least for this season). Being a successful character-driven episode necessitates a high score in character development, and this one earns it.

Importance of episode to series: 3.75 out of 10. Again, this is a very solid mid-point character episode, and it stands on its own, even though it has no major bearing on the series as a whole. The only major revelations here are the forthcoming building of the raft, and the hints towards Walt having some possible mental connection to the island due to being “different.”

Personal enjoyment of episode: 7 out of 10. To sound like a broken record, this was a well-done character episode, but not much more. Only thing that irked me a bit was the slight contrivance of the last-minute polar bear rescue and Charlie’s scene with the diary. To me, that was not natural, not how a real person would react. It was a little too “actorly.” Other than that, though, the episode was well-acted and written.

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