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The trap at the end of the clickbait

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Jane Campbell

14 Comments

  1. Anton B
    November 17, 2015 @ 8:18 am

    Another brilliant, insightful and interesting reading Jane. I have to take exception to this comment though –
    the theatrical Walkabout was not much to write home about (apart from its cinematic beauty)

    The films of Nicholas Roeg, including The Man Who Fell to Earth, Performance, Insignificance and of course Walkabout all demonstrate a unique and innovative use of editing and direction using cross cutting, juxtaposition and most importantly a way of shuffling chronology that almost approaches the Burroughsian ‘cut up’ technique to tease meaning from random associations in the text. In this regard I’m surprised you don’t make more comparison between the movie and Lost. Sight and Sound’s James Bell called Walkabout “a piece of ‘pure’ cinema through the use of mesmerising images of the landscape, dramatic shifts to the subjective points of view of its characters, and the jarring juxtapositions in editing for which he [Roeg] would become well known.”

    I agree with you about this exchange and think it is key

    JACK: We don’t have time to sort out everybody’s god.

    CHARLIE: Really, last I heard we were positively made of time.

    Also as I mentioned William Burroughs

    …who was sitting in 23C. Jack’s seat was 23A. Yet in all the airplane crash scenes, we never see another man sitting next to Jack. In fact, Jack ends up sitting in 23C

    I’m sure you’re aware of Burroughs and the 23 mystery but here’s a link and an uncannily apposite quote –

    “I first heard of the 23 enigma from William S Burroughs…According to Burroughs, he had known a certain Captain Clark, around 1960 in Tangier, who once bragged that he had been sailing 23 years without an accident. That very day, Clark’s ship had an accident that killed him and everybody else aboard. Furthermore, while Burroughs was thinking about this crude example of the irony of the gods that evening, a bulletin on the radio announced the crash of an airliner in Florida, USA. The pilot was another Captain Clark and the flight was Flight 23”

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/23_enigma

    The scar on Locke’s eye could also suggest the crosshairs of a gun-sight. Visually positioning him as far sighted, a hunter who is target or goal oriented and demonstrably not ‘blinded’ by the events of the crash. In fact, as we later discover – as a kind of reverse or mirrored injury, his actual pre-crash disability has been miraculously cured; suggesting that he has been touched by the divine or the uncanny.

    Reply

    • Jane Campbell
      November 17, 2015 @ 9:03 am

      Oooh, you’re right, I missed a trick on the Walkabout movie.

      Yes, cross-hairs! But Locke isn’t just the far-sighted hunter, with deeper insight into the Eyeland than the rest of his cohort. He also has those cross-hairs trained on him. He’s been marked for another purpose, and for a very long time.

      This kind of makes Locke a Mirror Man.

      Reply

      • Anton B
        November 17, 2015 @ 10:02 am

        Nice. Mirror Man.

        I can’t remember where LOST and l parted company but I think it was around season three. You’ve piqued my interest now and I’m really going to have to make time for a LOST re-watch.

        Reply

  2. David Anderson
    November 17, 2015 @ 9:25 am

    I think you’re overstating the extent to which John Locke, the philosopher, is really the poster boy for the modern right that the modern right would like him to be. There is nothing I think in his philosophy that rules out spending on a welfare state, for example, and quite a lot that would justify it. (We have he says in the state of nature a duty to preserve other people’s lives which takes second place only to the duty to preserve our own.)

    I think the orientalist reading of Heart of Darkness that Achebe objects to is a product of Western attempts to depoliticise or dematerialise it. Conrad was an associate of Casement in Casement’s project to document the atrocities in the Congo. The positioning of Africa as Other is repeatedly made problematic: in particular, there’s one instance where it occurs to Marlowe that the Congolese might regard the sound of drumming that seems so savage to him in the way that the English regard church bells. That is not the only instance in which the Congo is structurally identified with England. The book presents the position of Africa as the Other as a product of Marlowe’s ignorance (and of the Belgian atrocities) rather than an essential quality.

    Reply

  3. Kat
    November 17, 2015 @ 10:40 am

    So brilliant. I was hooked from the Pilot, but Walkabout really is the first episode to fully deliver on the promise of the show (even while making bigger promises as you point out). It’s rightly considered a classic, and you did it justice.

    The connections between Locke & the Smoke Monster are so glaring in hindsight. And I’m LOVING the repetition of Hurly’s narrative control. I think later of the motif of “Hurley’s handouts” – of being the guy who takes care of everybody and “makes them feel safe” – and he really is immediately positioned as the antithesis to Locke the (for better or worse) consummate individualist.

    I’m finding myself eagerly anticipating these analyses.

    Reply

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  12. williamalbert
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    Reply

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