Saturday, October 7, 2017

Lost Australians

I've been re-watching the first season of Lost, and am realizing that the show doesn't exactly put Australians in a good light.

Warning: Spoilers below.

In "Tabula Rasa", an Australian betrays Kate by calling the police on her.  He needed the offered reward.  To his credit, though, he did seem to feel bad about it all.

In "Walkabout", an Australian discriminates against Locke.  Despite being in a wheelchair, Locke wanted to go on a grueling tour. The Australian refuses to let him.  As sad as the scene was, I'm not sure the tour guide was wrong in saying no.  I think probably Locke was at fault for not disclosing his disability early on. If he did this, maybe they could have had ways to prepare so he could be accommodated.   Then again, Locke is a smart guy, and probably understood all his limitations.  He probably COULD have handled the walkabout tour.  But I can't blame the tour guide for his skepticism.  Still...he didn't come off looking like a nice guy.

In "Raised by Another" a fake or real Australian psychic manipulates Clair into getting on the doomed flight.  The show might have revealed later if he was real, fake, working for Jacob and The Others, etc. I can't remember.  But still.  I'm pretty sure he tricked her into getting on that flight.  He was also a bit stalkerish.  Or actually...a lot stalkerish. 

Oh! And also in that episode, there's Claire's Aussie boyfriend. He convinces pregnant Claire to play happy family. Then when she starts doing that, he gets scared and abruptly dumps her.

Now I'm watching "Hearts and Minds".  Boone is trying to get help for his stepsister who is being abused by her Australian boyfriend.  The Australian police won't help. 

So...what's the deal?  Why was the show shitting on Australians?

Or am I looking at things the wrong way?

There are also plenty of Americans who aren't lovely on the show.  For example, Jack's father killed a patient because he was intoxicated while operating.  Then he tried to manipulate Jack into keeping quiet about it. 

There's the American bank robber who was ready to turn the crime scene into a murder, and would have if Kate hadn't stopped him. 

And there are plenty more examples of Americans acting badly on the show.

I think the difference is there is more good-American to counteract the bad-American.

It makes me think of The Walking Dead, and the idea that black men are treated extremely unkindly by the zombie apocalypse.   It seems like every time there's a black man on the show, he dies...sometimes after a few episodes; sometimes after a season or two. 

I think, though, that just as many (or more) white people have died on The Walking Dead.  The difference is there are more white people on the show in general, and there's not this feeling that one actor is being fired so he can be replaced by another actor of the same ethnicity. 

I'm NOT saying this is what happens. I don't think The Walking Dead literally has some kind of quota.  It just feels like it sometimes. 

It's probably all some kind of coincidence.  Or it could be subconscious on the writer's part.  If it is subconscious, it might not be racist.  It might actually be sympathetic and symbolic for what black people have to endure in America.  Life on earth isn't safe, but it's especially unsafe if you're not white. 

So, what's up with Lost?  Did one of the creators of the show have a personal grievance against Australia?  Was it just coincidence?  Was it the fact that each of the characters needed a pre-island conflict, and since their journey began in Australia, the conflict was likely to involve Australians? 

The other thing I wonder about Lost and Australians, is why were there not more Australian survivors on the plane.  I have a feeling I've complained about this before on the blog.  I'm not sure, and I'm too lazy to search.  So...sorry (sort of) if I'm repeating myself.

I would think, though, that most flights have a pretty even mix of people leaving their hometown and people leaving their temporary destination. 

We could assume that there were many more Australians on the flight. They just weren't lucky enough to survive. 

Or maybe they did survive, but they're not part of the elite club that gets to talk and have storylines. 

I was thinking that maybe they just couldn't find enough Australian actors to fill a full-time role on the show.  But that can't be true. The show is filmed in Hawaii.  It's probably just as difficult to get mainland American actors there as it is to get actors from Australia....or Australian actors living on the American mainland.

I'm not saying Lost needed to have an even number of Australians and Americans.  But I definitely think they should have had more than just one. 

On the plus side, they did have four other characters that are not American—two Koreans, an Iraqi, and an English guy.  And that's just in season one.  I know later an African shows up.  Maybe others?

How often do non-Australians/non-Americans take flights from Sydney to LAX compared to Australians flying from LAX to Sydney?  Though I doubt the former is rare, I think the latter would be more common.

Anyway, I shall stop worrying about it, I suppose.  Whatever happened, happened.  For the sake of fictional Australians, I shall hope there were not many on the flight rather than they were on the flight and all (except one) died tragically. 

OR...maybe they survived and got lost on the island somewhere.  Maybe THEY will be the focus of the reboot series.  Maybe in that show, it will be Americans who are shitty and causing pre-island conflicts for the Australians.