Monthly Archives: April 2008

Lost 4.9 — “The Shape of Things to Come”

“Oh, so you do speak English.”

This was probably the most action-packed episode of Lost ever. It was hard not to enjoy it. We now know that Sayid and Ben’s connection was forged over Nadia’s death. We also know that the Ben/Widmore conflict is some sort of sinister game to the two of them, albeit one in which they both seem truly invested in the stakes.

Ben can summon/control the smoke monster, although it still doesn’t mean he was lying when he told Locke that he doesn’t know what it is. He may have no idea what it is he’s controlling. I’ve got to say, the monster’s attack was one of the coolest scenes in the history of the show.

Alex’s rather brutal death scene helps undermine any sense of “safety” for the characters going forward.

There’s not much more to say that springs to mind … the episode was a great way to come off of hiatus, fun and fast-paced.

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Lost 4.8 — “Meet Kevin Johnson”

I have held off until now, when my excitement for for Lost has again returned to a fever-pitch after the short hiatus, to comment on Michael’s return to the show. On a broad level, I think the episode is good; but on a nit-picking level there are things about the timing that still bother me.

We know time flows differently on the Island, but until we know just how differently, I am going to remain bothered. What gets me is that without knowing exactly when it is Michael and Walt get back to NYC (somehow), Michael then gets in his car accident, recovers, has his exchanges with Tom, travels to Fiji, and reaches the Island all in the space of, what, 3 weeks? Michael’s mother says he was gone for 2 months, putting his return at the end of November. We know that the Kahana arrives at the island before Christmas. I know time tends to get compressed in the name of storytelling, and generally that’s fine, but this episode was really pushing it to me.

One of the other things that initially bothered me about the episode could turn out to be an important point. I’ve assumed that Ben’s people, when leaving the Island, use the sub. But with communications being down, Tom couldn’t have used the sub. Even if Ben was lying to most of his people about the communications, hence why he is talking to Michael from his basement, he still couldn’t send Tom on the sub as that would be a give away. So was Tom teleported off the Island? There was a suggestion in “The Other Woman” that the whispers in the jungle have something to do with some sort of movement, could this also reach off the Island?

Generally, though, the episode is pretty good on its own. Tom is a fun character in it, and Michael doesn’t have to spend half the episode screaming “They took my son! WALT!!!” I doubt Rousseau is dead, or at least I doubt we’ve seen the last of her. Carl, much as I loved it when Ben talked to him this season, was a non-character plot device they were stuck with, and killing him off was wise.

I’m very excited about 4.9, “The Shape of Things to Come,” which is supposedly a Ben flashback.

Expelled

If Expelled turns into some sort of national phenomenon, I’ll probably go nuts and kill someone. So far it was only 9th its opening weekend, but you never know about word of mouth.

No, I have not seen the movie, and by all rights and in the interest of avoiding hypocrisy I shouldn’t be commenting on it. But it is fairly clear that the film is a presentation of all of the arguments intelligent design (ID) proponents put forth in their arguments. All it takes are a couple minutes of Googling to find that the people who were “unjustly” fired “because of their belief in ID” are seriously misrepresenting the reality of their situation–unless, of course, all you read are the countless posts by ID supporters who like to paint themselves as being persecuted.

At the end of the day, what it comes down to is this: Evolution may have holes in it, it may turn out to need serious revision at some point before it is truly understood, but that does not prove ID. Those who suggest that is the case are creating a false dichotomy. Their argument seems to be “Not fair, we have a right to our theory too!” But the problem here is that they are not actually performing science, which is the process by which they set out to do work to attempt to prove their theory. One does not prove one theory simply by pointing out problems with another theory. You need factual evidence that directly supports your theory.

Therein lies the ultimate problem. ID is quite simply not science. The ID people wish to assert that it is not religion, and I will for a moment graciously accept that. However, just because it stops being religion does not automatically make it science–it makes it philosophy. ID posits the metaphysical, which is simply not provable or disprovable in a factual manner. And if it can’t be proved or disproved, then it is not science. Period.

Internerding It Up

So it looks as though I am going to have my own monthly column in Information Today. I’ll be highlighting two or three “neat” tools, be they websites, IM applications, social networks, or what have you. I love that this gives me a justification for all the Web 2.0 geekdom I engage in anyway!

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