Spoilers are a safe bet here.

Lost Official Site

The Time:
Wednesdays, 9:00 PM, ABC

The Show:

When Oceanic Flight 815 from Sydney to London went down somewhere over the Pacific, the survivors of the crash found themselves marooned on a tropical island.  But this is no ordinary island; it has unusual magnetic, temporal, healing and seemingly supernatural properties, and is fraught with constant danger.  There are mysterious black smoke-like creatures, polar bears, and even apparitions of the dead roaming the forest.  The island is also the former secret haven of a group called the Dharma Initiative, who were running experiments utilizing the unique properties of the island via research stations that dot the landscape.  Now the Oceanic survivors, led by Dr. Jack Sheppard, Kate Austen, James “Sawyer” Ford, John Locke, Hugo “Hurley” Reyes, Sayid Jarrah and others, seek a way to escape the island and its many dangers.  But there are people, both living on the island and seeking the island from outside, who are at war for control of it, and the Oceanic survivors find themselves caught in the middle.  Told via nonlinear fashion that incorporates flashbacks and flash forwards, Lost is one of the most unique and densely mythological shows on television.

The Stars:

•  Matthew Fox – Dr. Jack Sheppard
•  Evangeline Lilly – Kate Austen
•  Josh Holloway – James “Sawyer” Ford
•  Naveen Andrews – Sayid Jarrah
•  Terry O’Quinn – John Locke
•  Jorge Garcia – Hugo “Hurley” Reyes
•  Daniel Dae Kim – Jin Kwon
•  Yunjin Kim – Sun Kwon
•  Michael Emerson – Benjamin Linus
•  Henry Ian Cusick – Desmond Hume
•  Elizabeth Mitchell – Juliet Burke

The Episode:Because You Left”

Standing over Locke’s coffin, Jack has come to terms with Ben telling him that they have to get the entire Oceanic Six together so they can get back to the island in order to set things right that have gone wrong.  Elsewhere, Sayid and Hurley are on the run after Sayid has busted Hurley out of the looney bin; a few deaths are involved.  Kate gets a visit from two lawyers who say they have a court order to get samples of her and Aaron’s blood.  Meanwhile, on the island, Sawyer, Locke and the other survivors are riding the island like a bronco as it keeps skipping through time like a stone.  A sudden attack from unknown people on the island only adds to their problems.  And Desmond gets a message from the past that will affect the future.

The Lowdown:

Worth the wait, definitely.  There’s more plates spinning in this two-hour episode than a Cirque du Soleil show.  I think the definite end date has reinvigorated the storytelling and the show is steadily building, keeping its many narrative elements going strong.  They quickly reestablish all of the plot threads they have going, and answer questions in their maddeningly vague manner, while adding some new ones along the way.  The story bounces back and forth through time like the survivors on the island.  The show runners have said that the flash backs and flash forwards were going to be scaled way back and they were.  There are only a couple in the two-hour run time, but the story is rearranged like a Tarantino flick to keep things interesting.

There seemed to be very little if any filler and I think the writers have become very mindful to serve the steak and keep the fat back in the kitchen.  I like how they’re also establishing the ground rules for time travel and not using it simply as a MacGuffin to change things or retcon a storyline that became problematic, at least not yet.  It also leaves the door open for almost any kind of cameoing that fits, as evidenced by the brief return of an Other that has long since gone.  That’s fine as long as it doesn’t become a constant thing.  It’s also interesting how the survivors are traveling through time but other things like the camp aren’t; sort of a Terminator-style rule for time travel (e.g. “nothing dead will go”).  I’m also glad they found a way to work Desmond back in and (possibly) keep him relevant to the storyline.  The cameo with the cop and Hurley on the side of the road was also a nice little touch.

Everything else just seems to fall into line nicely.  The suspense is
being laid stone by stone for these last two seasons and this episode
satisfies.  I wasn’t on the edge of my seat like I was for the Battlestar return, but this was still a very solid episode and a good season premiere.  I’ve mentioned before that I got my Lost
education via marathon sessions streaming back episodes on websites and
reviewing the Season 4 box set.  So I could move right on to the next
episode when I wanted.  Now I’m caught up and subject to the weekly
wait like everyone else.  But I’m eager to see what’s coming next. 

 8.7 out of 10

Message Board