Thursday, January 26, 2006

Irena vs. The Tailies

I guess I'm still a little bitter about the fact that Lost, with it's never-ending popularity and network support, is still far inferior to Alias, which never really had network support, and is now cancelled just as the plot is getting better than ever. Let's do a quick compare and contrast of Seasons 2, shall we? I haven't done a list for awhile, so this should be fun!

Point 1: Open Questions
Both of JJ's shows are about a continual plot - lots of open questions that make the audience think. If We, the viewers, do a little bit of brain work, we get paid off in the long run with rich character development, almost invisible clues and a great story. Part of telling a story this long is that some questions are opened that will not be answered for weeks, months or in some cases, years. Again, there is some fun in this - a little anticipation can be quite enjoyable! However, Alias rewards its viewers every once in awhile with *answers*... Yes, Syd's mother is alive and Yes SD6 can be brought down. Lost seems uninterested in answering any of its questions, but it loves to add more questions. We are half way through Season 2 and we still don't know anything about anything really!! Who are the others? Where's Walt? Why is Locke so weird? NOTHING!

Point 2: New Characters
Irena Derevko is one of the best characters on TV EVER. She is a smart, strong, complex woman. Even if you never really know how good or evil she is, you still love her! While Eko of the tailies is interesting with his drug dealer/priest thing going on, we already hate Ana Lucia because she killed Shannon right when we started sympathizing with her... and the writers seem uninterested in writing them into the script for the second half of the season anyway.

Point 2A: Cast Management
In Alias, we only ever followed Sydney's life, and then a few other main characters: Vaughn, Jack, Sloan... as much as I love them, the other characters only had secondary, manageable plots (Irena, Nadia, Lauren, Sark, Dixon...etc). In Lost EVERYONE is a main character... to manage that many primary plotlines is a nightmare... the payoff may never come!! This show could go on for 20 years and we still may not have the complexity for a single character that Alias has built for Sydney. Yes I love character development, but by the time Michael or Walt comes back, I'll have forgotten everything that is told to me already!

Point 3: Episode to Episode Plots
Yes - the basic plots to both shows are pretty amazing, but in Season 2, I was still hanging on to every word coming out of the characters' mouths. I would watch the clock between commercials getting upset that there were only 12 minutes of Alias left for that week... every episode was heart stopping. Lost has had some pretty amazing episodes too this season, but they've also had some pretty so-so ones (like from last night, or the Hurly one). And for those who watch both shows relgiously - can you honestly tell me the ambush of the Others onto our Survivors was as cool as the amazing post-Superbowl takedown of SD-6, followed by the Syd-Vaugh kiss? There is just no way.

In the end, as far as Season 2s go, Alias was just a better show - and in my opinion always will be. This being said, I do love Lost, but I feel that it may go stale long before the Networks cancel it. Alias had one bad season (4) - and it was good bye.

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