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Jul. 31st, 2008 @ 10:42 am Baby, I am tired to a tree in a jungle of mysteries...
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1x08 Discussion



Before Season Three came along and introduced two of my favoritest (look who talks like a Hobbit in the morning..) characters in a bunch of great episodes, this one was it for me. It's still probably my favorite episode, and Sawyer's line (see subject) is probably still my favorite of the show. I still remember the first time it aired, after it was over I just felt that whole Lost-y feeling to the utmost. :)
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From:doctors_girl
Date:July 31st, 2008 04:21 pm (UTC)

spoilers for season 4

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Aw, Confidence Man. Definitely my favourite episode in season 1. Yes, it's mainly because of my bias, because it's my favourite character's episode, but I really think Sawyer had the most exciting introduction as a character in season one. If you try to watch it like it was the first time watching this episode you can still appreciate the twist which is just brilliant, that he's actually not the con man in the letter story, but he's the little boy, and the suddenly the character is very different from what you might have thought about him before. What is most wonderful about this episode that there's so much about Sawyer in it in the very beginning, that he's not really evil, but he is damaged and he hates himself so much for the things he had done and he knows he deserves some punishment, that's why he needs other people to hate him. And there is still a good man in him, and also the scared little boy still lives inside, which will slowly surface from now on, and this episode is the beginning. That is something I absolutely love about this show, his character's evolution is so beautifully delivered.
This is the beginning of the character's journey which leads to season 4 Sawyer, to the hero he will become and we see the first steps here. Of course it's Kate. This is the first time in his life he met someone who can see not only the jerk in him and who can inspire him to be a better man. Like in the next episode when Kate tells him he should try to be social, and he goes to the golf course. There will be other people in the group who will affect him, but Kate was the first one and still the most important one of course.

And I remember how much it shocked me when I first saw this episode that Sayid and Jack actually did what they did to him. That was the darkest phase of the survivors' life on the Island. It a very dangerous thing to do, and at this point they must have stopped otherwise things could have gone very easily out of hand and it would affect the whole group. And we also got see how the complexity of Sayid's character. I think that he leaves the group after he tortured Sawyer says so much about him. He's a soldier whose job was torturing people, that is what he is, but he is also a good man, who feels so much regret and he admits it that was a mistake. And here is the big difference between Jack and Sayid. Jack would never admit it, he would never regret it. He still thinks that torturing another man og their group was the right thing to do at that point, he also says it was Sawyer's choice. Excuse me Jack fans, but this is bullshit. He was the leader at this point, so he was the one who should have stopped it.

And I can't help it, I have to mention that The Kiss is still the hottest kiss I've seen on television ever. Epic.

And even this episode is all about Sawyer for me, I still love the Claire/Charlie interactions (God, I miss those interactions from the show so much) and Sun's little moment with the eucaliptus.
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From:findingjuliet
Date:July 31st, 2008 06:00 pm (UTC)
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it's my all time favorite LOST quote too.

in fact just look at the title of my journal :)
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From:endearlings
Date:July 31st, 2008 07:40 pm (UTC)
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What an amazing episode, my fav. episode in the first season for my fav. character in the series. I don't even know what to say at this particular moment, lol...
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From:falafel_musings
Date:July 31st, 2008 09:15 pm (UTC)

Spoilers!

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I like 'Confidence Man', but I don't love it. The next THREE episodes are dynamite. So I love the ending with the blind boys song that sets up the next batch of eps. But this one isn't a big favourite for me.

I wasn't keen on the torture plot. I found it a little melodramatic. I think they played the Lord of the Flies card too soon. I'm also not a big fan of Sawyer's childhood angst. Well, I LIKE that his backstory explains Sawyer's attitude, but it's a bit of a sob story. Sawyer shouldn't be redeemed by the sympathy vote alone. I often feel like he is.

Obviously Jack and Sayid were out of order here. Locke giving Sayid the knife was sinister too considering who REALLY attacked Sayid on the hill. Childhood angst aside, Sawyer is a jerk in this episode too. He beats Boone to a bloody pulp for...stealing?! Sawyer has spent most of his adult life stealing. Boone was trying to save his sister's life. Shannon can barely breathe and Sawyer pretends to have her medicine, distracting the camp's only doctor from his patient. Then Sawyer blackmails Kate into kissing him (I don't care how good looking Sawyer is, that was sleazy). I know it sounds like I'm Sawyer bashing here. But I celebrate this peroid when Sawyer was "the guy you love to hate" on the show. I found Sawyer so much more engaging as a despicable scumbag with a little private soft side. Sawyer here is gloriously complex and very un-heroic.

Anyway, enough of the silly men and their silly macho aggression. Sun is the big hero of this episode. I love her expertise with herbs (what happened to that?) I love the quiet modest way she steps in and saves the day while the guys are off being assholes to each other. Go Sun.

The Charlie and Claire peanut butter story is so darn cute. It's almost TOO cute but they get away with it. I miss Claire's little sun hat. It was nice to see two people making a connection without it being a sexual thing or a power thing. Of course, this starts the trend with Charlie/Claire. Anytime they are happy together it means DOOM is about to strike and destroy them both. Poor things.
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From:matitablu
Date:August 2nd, 2008 11:07 pm (UTC)

Re: Spoilers!

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True, very true about Sun - both for the fact that she actually saves the day AND the authors dropping the concept of her botanical knowledge. Altough she's one of the characters whose evolution I liked best: you look back and realize she has *always* been the stronger half of the couple, only in the beginning she was sort of going undercover :-D

Ditto on Sawyer, too. I honestly don't mind his new Big Damn Hero version, because otherwise S4 would ahve felt Too Damn Hopeless :-D But as a whole, he was more interesting when he wasn't so easily likable.
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From:falafel_musings
Date:August 3rd, 2008 07:26 am (UTC)

Re: Spoilers!

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But as a whole, he was more interesting when he wasn't so easily likable.

Thanks! Those were the words I was looking for. I don't want a hateworthy Sawyer; just an interesting harder-to-like Sawyer. But that side of him is totally gone in S4. He's lost all his edge and complexity in my opinion. Plus, I don't think his issues should have disappeared after he murdered Cooper. Commiting murder (twice!) should have made him a darker broodier character, not a heroic goody goody.
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From:matitablu
Date:August 3rd, 2008 09:57 am (UTC)

Re: Spoilers!

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Yeah, the Cooper murder could have been used better. It casts a VERY dark light on Locke and shows that Sawyer was still stuck in his old grudges. But then they (the authors) sort of moved on from that.

What saved Sawyer's jump int the finale from being too cheesy, IMO, is that if you think about it, what Ben told him is true: on the island he's an hero, in the "real world" he's basically a loser who can't compete in Jack's league. So yeah, selfless act... but he was also the one with the least to lose. At least that's how I read that scene.
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From:falafel_musings
Date:August 3rd, 2008 10:28 am (UTC)

Re: Spoilers!

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But then they (the authors) sort of moved on from that.

Well, this happened A LOT in S4. The writers wanted to move on with the plot, so the emotional developement and continuity of several characters (Sawyer, Claire, Desmond, Juliet, Hurley, etc) just had to be dropped. Personally I hated that Sawyer murdered Cooper, because to me it said that he hadn't changed at all from the man who murdered Frank Duckett, even though he claimed to regret that. Sawyer killing Cooper seemed like a huge step back to me. Now IF Sawyer had shown mercy to Cooper, risen above his revenge insticts and NOT killed him, then his development into a heroic character would've made more sense. Well, I'm just a bitter ex-Sawyer fan I suppose. I think his development has been poorly written and they've diluted the complexity the character once had.

what Ben told him is true: on the island he's an hero, in the "real world" he's basically a loser who can't compete in Jack's league. So yeah, selfless act... but he was also the one with the least to lose. At least that's how I read that scene.

I agree. That's why I don't get gushy over Sawyer's helicopter jump. In S1 and S2 they clearly established that Sawyer is a self-loathing character with a death wish. In Confidence Man, Sawyer gets stabbed in the arm and he tells Jack to let him die, saying if their roles were reversed he wouldn't save him. It isn't such a sacrifice if Sawyer doesn't care about his life anyway. But in S4 they've replaced death-wish!Sawyer with suvivor!Sawyer so I don't really know anymore. I was a fan of S1 Sawyer, but I feel like they have changed the whole idea of the character since then.
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From:pacejunkie
Date:August 1st, 2008 12:53 am (UTC)
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I love this episode because it feels so packed. Jam packed with story. One thing they couldn't be accused of in season one was having episodes where nothing happened. They managed to find time for a main Sawyer story with Jack, Kate and Sayid, a Sawyer backstory, a nice complete Charlie/Claire subplot, a Boone/Shannon subplot, a Sun/Jin/Michael mini soap opera and still they have time for small but significant scenes with Locke and Hurley. Yes, it was a Sawyer ep, but it was a true ensemble ep as well, finishing off with a nice teaser to Sayid's story and a musical montage to boot. It had humour, drama, fluff, criminals, it had it all.

Locke is plain evil for the way he got in Sayid's head using Sawyer as a scapegoat, and yeah Sawyer ain't no nice guy, but he didn't deserve that. I laughed at several Sawyer lines, the writing was great. I don't think he should be able to fall back on his unhappy childhood for the choices he makes as an adult though. I can understand why he is what he is and why he punishes himself but its no excuse for continuing to be an ass, but that's what makes him such an entertaining character.

Charlie/Claire/Peanut Butter -- Still my favourite triangle. And the Charlie/Hurley scene was classic Churley with Charlie putting his foot in it every time he spoke. What a team. And I think Hurley gets the best line award for "That was a Jedi moment."

For some reason both of the Sawyer eps in season one have great Charlie subplots attached to them so I always enjoy them. Charlie and Sawyer provide nice balance side by side in an ep.
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From:isla_negra
Date:August 1st, 2008 02:51 am (UTC)
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This is one of the best Lost episodes ever! I love Sawyer´s flashback. The Charlie/Claire scenes are the cutest, and the ending is just amazing!