Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Review: Lost 2.12: Fire + Water

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Charlie be kidnapping babies. From Wikia
Lost - Season Two, Episode Twelve - Fire + Water
Written 13/8/13

I didn't say that Season Two was perfect. That would be silly. Some of the characters from the main lot don't get utilised as well as the new guys, and some of them go off in weird and disturbing deviations from their arcs. The best example is Charlie, who goes from being a recovering Junkie managing to find a fairly stable foothold in which to recover by becoming a father figure for Claire's baby, to being a delusional nutjob who kidnaps babies, lies to everyone about everything and who basically needs some serious psychiatric help. It's not the best way for a character to go, really, and instead of feeling interesting like it should do it just makes me want to smack his face every time he sprouts his bullshit.
     Charlie has several visions and delusions where Aaron (pronounced for no apparent reason by Charlie as "eh-ron", which is currently getting my most-annoying-thing-in-Lost reward) is in danger and he is the man expected to run to his rescue, and they're filed with a dozen and three religious references along with it. In his second vision of the episode, he awakens with Aaron in his arms, and it turns out he's been sleepwalking and has stolen Aaron from his crib. After being reprimanded, he starts to become jealous when Locke is acting like a better friend to Claire and a better daddy to Aaron than he ever did. Locke asks if he's using again, and is betrayed when he finds out that Charlie lied about keeping some of the heroin-filled statues. Eventually Charlie becomes convinced, after a conversation with Eko, that Aaron needs to be baptised, so he sets some forest on fire near the camp and uses the distraction to once more kidnap Aaron, leading to Locke punching him out. Meanwhile Hurley flirts with Libby summore.
     It's clear what's going on in Charlie's subconscious, even if it isn't immediately apparent. In the flashback we see his brother flush Charlie's dreams away again in order to get out of his drug addiction, selling Charlie's piano to pay for rehab in order to reconcile with his wife and newborn daughter. In my mind I think that Charlie now associates children with redemption and thinks that if a daughter helped his brother to become better, then adopting Aaron as his own will help him do the same. The problem, as Claire and Locke point out to him, is that he's not in a committed relationship - a month ago he was a stranger to Claire and the way he's latched onto her and her son with that level of possessiveness is really, really creepy. I think any reasonable person would realise that if you're subconsciously snatching babies in your sleep, there is something seriously wrong that you need to sort out.
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Don't ask. From Wikia
      I'm sure that Fire + Water was trying to do something interesting with its character, like the show did back in The Moth, which was actually pretty good and managed to show Charlie in a three-dimensional manner. The problem with that in this case is that in Fire + Water, even though he isn't even using the drugs, he seems to throw everything that he learnt back in people's faces. He lied and cheated and fell pray to his delusions - okay, Claire can't really talk, considering that she was on the plane because a psychic told her to be - in a way which really just made me question his overall sanity. It makes no sense to me that the funky rocker who began the show seeking redemption for his past transgressions has managed to develop into someone so easily hateable.

Thanks.

NEXT WEEK: Sawyer does exactly the same thing. Except on purpose. And Charlie helps. We find out that Sawyer has been playing The Long Con

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