Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Episode 5.17 "All the time in the world"

You all know I love Alias, ABC, JJ, the cast and the writers. I have a huge amount of respect for their years of hard work and dedication- but I suppose I am feeling a little disgruttled about all of our hardwork and dedication. This finale was suppose to be the pay off and it felt like betrayal to me.

I understand that many of you want to love the finale, that you refuse to look at it in a negative light because it would mean that your love for the show was meaningless, pointless and unimportant. This post is not intended to change your mind. It’s not intended to make you feel bad about liking, loving or feeling satisfied by the ending. This post is merely a recap of my ideas and thoughts on the finale.

The final hour was to be THE hour. The pace picked up, the music was cued and then I think I fell into a deep spiral of disappointment, depression and desire to kill.

Love Lost
First, it was a cloud of sadness that seemed to take over- that sadness then morphed into only what I can explain as “I HATE LAUREN” anger! From there, Starbucks Mom and I had a hard finding anything remotely Alias or entertaining about the whole finale.

I felt the writing was haphazardly formed on pages- loose ends were not tied, but cut in order to meet the time restraint and at an attempt to satisfy. We here at Let’s Talk have been piecing together the complex and creative puzzle of Alias from day one. The twists and turns, the shock and awe-we have reviewed, rehashed and reexamined every last detail from every season, storyline and character. Now, I can mostly certainly say, the writers did not. If they had- then I think we would have seen an entirely different Alias finale.

Many of you posted that perhaps our own exciting, deep and complex theories here on the blog set us up for disappointment. We expected great things. We expected closure and answers and WHY WOULDN’T WE? The writers of ole gave us the meat. They built the expectation on their brilliant writing, their puzzling clues and their outrageous cliff-hangers. Not to mention the promotions!! What happened to the couch-gripping moments (Sydney defusing a bomb buried in a grave- Jack facing Geiger in the torture room- Vaughn being caught in the Mueller Device flood)? They disappeared- right down the tube.

There are no excuses- ABC Executives are not an excuse, time limitations are not an excuse. Alias has had plenty of finale episodes (hello, Season 1 and 2!!) that packed as much action, suspense and drama as any full length feature film. Alias has never had a problem with details, with fill and fast pace and last night it felt as if the show took a snooze. If you and I and Joe Blow can come up with 14 alternative endings during one hour of SpyChat with punch and fire and enormous amounts of WOW- then why can’t a room full of paid, professional writers do the same? I am just at a loss for words!

For the Love of Rambaldi
Most of this lack of detail comes from the Rambaldi storyline. In season 1 we learned about a prophet who lived 500 years ago and his ideas and designs about using technology to get closer to God. His role grew as we learned about SD-6, the Alliance and Sloane’s obsession with finding Rambaldi’s truth. We were thrown for a loop when we found out that Sydney was part of Rambaldi’s prophecy- that she was the “woman here depicted” who would save the world from “utter desolation.”

From El Dire, we learned that Rambaldi’s message was for peace. We learned that Sydney had a sister, the Passenger, who also had a special connection to Rambaldi and the prophecy. The definition of the notorious symbol for Rambaldi was described to us by Sydney, as a battle between the Chosen One and Passenger- a fight that would come down to a simple sphere. The clock, the cube, the manuscript, the green fluid, the hourglass, El Dire, the Rambaldi DNA, the Sphere of Life, Page 47, the Horizon and the countless other artifacts became pieces of the puzzle. What was the point of all globe-trotting and artifact stealing? What was the reason behind the number 47? The answers seemed to be buried along with Sloane.

Inconsistency and plot holes are one thing, season to season, but episode to episode is just plain laziness. Though we’ve seen little of Irina over the years, the woman we’ve always known as Sydney’s mother and international criminal was not the woman we saw last night. Her feelings about Sydney and Nadia have always been clear. She always loved her daughters, always tried to protect them, even when she was using them for your own gain. She was never a strong, whole-hearted believer in Rambaldi, but more interested in learning about the roles her daughters played in his prophecy. Somewhere in the frenzy of the final moments, we lost the meaning of Irina’s truth- “The Truth Takes Time.” Well, time is up!

Now we will never know how Irina’s capture by Elena was connected to Irina’s endgame. Did she merely need to get rid of her sister to fulfill her own evil endgame? If her intention was eternal life, what was the point? She didn’t have a motivation to live forever outside of evil- she had nothing to live for- no family, no love. Where had she been all those years? What was she working all? All of this was for a little red sphere with live-forever juice??

As for Sloane and his obsession-when did Rambaldi go from being about “faith, peace, love, and eternal life” to the billions of dollars he would receive from the reconstruction of the cities he planned to bomb? He repeatedly spoke of the “greater good” and even continued to drink large amounts of water, which only lead us back to the harmonious affects of the Mueller Device and the peace it would bring. Sloane has always had access to large amount of money- the Alliance, the Covenant, P5 were all big high rolls with cash and power. Sloane wiped them out, how much more power can you get?

Even some of the flashbacks in Sydney’s life seemed inconsistent. Jack seemed surprised that Sydney was able to piece together the complex puzzle at such a young age. I always assumed that Jack’s intended use of Project Christmas as a way to protect Sydney from the life of spydom. He wanted her to be able to withstand torture, physical and mental and to identify traitors like Irina and Sloane. Jack had always stated that he had never intended for Sydney to be involved with the CIA- he even mentioned it in his last words to her. That would suggest, along with Sydney’s flashback meeting with Sloane, that she herself chose the life of a spy which takes away from her character. She blamed Jack for taking away her choices in life.

Also, Sydney’s role in the Rambaldi scheme changed. Sloane had always been protective of Sydney- he always said that he loved her like a daughter and that she had some purpose. Why would Sloane keep her around if she was the Chosen One, the one who would stop him?

A couple random loose ends:
-If P5 used Sydspinoza to lure Sydney into P5, what was the point? Why did P5 need Sydney? What was their endgame? We won't ever know because P5 is dead!
-What about Renee? Was she merely the vessel for the chip that would lead to the bunker?
-Who was the Cardinal?
-Who was the mole inside MI5?
-Where is Katya? She is the last surviving Derevko and she's just as dangerous as the others.
-Who was DeSantis, how and why was he in that cryogenic-box?
-How did BV and Renee's know that Renee and Vaughn would find each other?
-What was SAB47?

Where is the Love?
I will not completely disregard the last hour- I will not denounce it for all eternity (no pun intended). There is plenty that I enjoyed about the final 60 minutes of Alias:
1. I enjoyed the return to micro self storage. I will forever be in love with that dank, dirty will chain linked storage room.
2. I loved the flashbacks:
-Young Sydney piecing together the puzzle.
-The much-anticipated return of good old Francie and her playful relationship with Sydney.
-The blow up between Sydney and Jack about her job at Credit Dauphine. -Sydney’s meeting with Sloane about her promotion and advancement at SD-6.
These were all very important flashbacks that helped us to better understand Sydney’s position, her recruitment and personal decisions about becoming an agent. I will get back to this later…
3. I loved Sark pulling the gun on Vaughn, and Jack pulling the gun on Sark and then Sloane’s gofers pulling their guns on Jack. So classic!
4. Vaughn and Sark’s little fight- “YOU SHOT ME!”
5. I loved the torture of Kelly Peyton. How fabulous was it to see her squirm over the snake? To me, that made her human. That made her more complex. And yahoo Rachel, a little payback is always great!
6. Jack’s death- though sad, was very important to the end. He was finally able to take responsibility for the life he had chosen for himself and Sydney and by stopping Sloane from wreaking more havoc.
7. And who could not love little Jack and Izzy, on the beach with mom, dad and Uncle Dixon? It was precious, was it not?
8. Sloane spending all of eternity in a cave under a rock was not the most creative or clever way to punish Alias's number one spy villian, but I can live with that.

I know I said I would be satisfied if the writers left some questions unanswered, but as far as I am concerned they didn’t answer any! There was no nice little package with a bow! Yeah, sure Vaughn, Syd and the kiddies are safe at the beach- but Dixon wants their help finding Sark and Izzy is a super genius? I know, spin off material is great- but it was like, okay, “see ya next week for the conclusion of Alias: The Made for TV Movie.” BOO!

All of this leads to one large question from a writer’s point of view-
IS THIS WHAT JJ INTENTED FOR HIS MEGA HIT SHOW?

OKAY- hit me with it! I am prepared! Ready, aim, fire!

62 comments:

pkrm said...

Oooh, GirlScout, I see now why you were so upset with this hour!!! However, I have found satisfying answers to some of your questions, and I'd just like to share. Some of this I have already posted, but it applies well here:

People were furious with "My name is not Michael Vaughn," too, but with more explanation it is no longer an issue. We can reconcile what we know now with the information we already have.

Irina did not turn into a psycho freak in the final season. She has been that same psycho freak the entire time! She is an expert at manipulating people. We've known better since she walked into the scene at the end of season 1 than to take anything she said at face value, and had that reinforced OVER AND OVER again throughout season 2.

Yes, she shut down Elena, but that was because Elena's plan would have destroyed her own. She wanted the world the way it was so she could take control of it, Elena wanted an apocalypse. Of course she helped take her down.

And in spite of her power hungry ways, Irina DOES love Sydney and Jack. She saved Sydney's baby, and at the end, "In spite of all of this, I really do love you." It was the same for Sloane. He really did love Nadia, however he was too hungry to stop himself. I believe Irina did love Sydney, but nobody was going to stand in her way. It was her hunger for the power the Horizon offered that ended her life anyway. Sydney didn't kill her.

I believe the ending can be reconciled with the past. She used everyone for her own purposes, kiling her sister and manipulating Jack and Syd. I don't see a plot hole here, or any inconsistency. And remember, although Jack said SLOANE was the one who wanted to profit, it was actually Irina. Sloane traded those missiles for the Horizon! He was after immortality, Irina wanted to seize the power.

The power was not Sloane's main endgame...he was after immortality. Hence he gladly gave Irina what she wanted in exchange for the Horizon...not realizing that Irina had hired Sark to steal it from him in the end anyway.

Irina was after immortality AND power. This was her end game the entire time. She was involved with Prophet 5 the entire time, and her entire search this entire 5 seasons long was to end up in the position we found her at in the end. She had immortality with the Horizon, and she had Prophet 5's control over the world.

We (being the Americans we are) incorrectly assumed "the greatest power" referred to the USA...kind of arrogant, yes? Irina became the greatest power! Imagine...an immortal being with control over the most powerful 12 nations on the planet. And Sydney rendered the greatest power unto utter desolation. This was the purpose of the globe-trotting, to get these artifacts and put Irina where she was.

Strangely enough, Rambaldi WAS about peace and immortality...twisted followers like Irina, Elena, and Sloane used his prophecies to try to advance their own endgames...not Rambaldi's. Rambaldi created a formula that would re-engineer the species into a more docile and peaceful species, and when he realized his red ball could turn them into homicidal maniacs, he made a cure! Every organization twisted Rambaldi's work into something he never intended...and he foresaw Sydney would bring about every one of their demises!

Sorry for the length of this post, but I truly believe the Rambaldi mythology was very nicely "wrapped up." All of my questions were answered, and when explained this way, make perfect sense to me. I too am ready for the "Ready, Aim, Fire!" You have 2 points of view here...let us have it! :)

Paul

Kiki said...

Paul I don't think anyone ever considered or related the greater good as refering to America. I am so confused by that statement?

momknows said...

Girlscout-- I agree completely!!

Lisa said...

No, sadly, I didn't really feel full when the series finally ended, and I totally agree with you.

What the heck happened with Irina after Season 4? There wasn't enough of her in Season 5 to really wonder why she was portrayed as the ultimate villian to the endgame. There was definitely not enough development with her character, and I wished they showed more of her this season to explain why. But respectfully out of Lena Olin's wishes, she wanted to remain on the East Coast with her children.

And Rambaldi...??? What happened to its significance? It all seemed to have went down the drain after last season, and everything else that didn't fit into Season 4 was thrown into the finale. As a die-hard Alias fan, I wasn't really convinced at all with what occurred in these last few eps regarding the Rambaldi plot. I seriously thought Rambaldi was over, until the writers wanted a kick-ass Sea. 4 season finale about Vaughn not being Vaughn at all, and he investigating into Prophet 5.

I feel like the writers have been kind of pulling our strings with the storylines bet. 4 and 5 because of outside influences (Vartan breaking up with Jen and thought he didn't want to be on the show), just as it seems to be with Lost with the deaths of Ana Lucia and Libby (both caught with breaking the law and thus ousted). That's why I feel like Season 5 wasn't really an "honest" season, despite the fact that they try their hardest to return to the show's roots after failed attempts to revv up audience numbers in the previous seasons. While I accepted and embraced the new characters, ultimately in the end, it wasn't enough. So the timing was right to finally end it, although they did an okay job of doing it.

Regardless of the criticism I put into this, I still love the series with all my heart, but I didn't like the inconsistencies and the hastiness put into "All the Time in the World".

Anonymous said...

I largely agree with girlscout. At the end of the show, my reaction was huh? What was that stuff with the amulet? What was Syndey not supposed to see? And I thought Irina was a different person in the finale. Her "endgame" of immortality and power doesn't justify all the obtuse lines she has used for the other seasons.

I do think, however, that her line "the truth takes time" refers to her realization that she could not be both an agent and a mother, as she told Sydney at her delivery. THAT is the only line of her's that seems wrapped up to me. The line fits nicely with Sydney's newfound change: she too, cannot be a mother and an agent. (How can she continue to risk her life if she wants her daughter to have a mother?)

Overall, I was disappointed by the ending. The "eternal life" as the final Rimbaldi prize for Sloane is lame. He's talked about that and in the end of the Slone/clone episodes, he implied that Rimbaldi is about much more than immortality (as he pummels the clone's henchman).

For me it comes down to Tom Cruise. He pulled JJ Abrams away from Alias. If it hadn't been for MI:3, I'm sure Abrams would have written the finale, even if he was busy with LOST. And that is how it should have been: he wrote that pilot which hooked us all, he would have wrote a suitable bookend of a finale. As it is, the authors of the finale seemed to have forgotten the first four years.

Michael C

pkrm said...

The prophecy reads, "This woman here depicted will possess unseen marks, signs that she will be the one to bring forth my works. Bind them with fury, a burning anger unless prevented, at vulgar cost, this woman will RENDER THE GREATEST POWER unto utter desolation."

She was then taking into custody by the US government...I assumed this meant they felt the USA was the greatest power, and she was a threat. I could very well be wrong on this...but that was my reasoning...in any case, that idea is a side point! :) I hope we don't get sidetracked on it!

Paul

Kiki said...

No, I just posted about those question because they were not answered for me. They weren't given what I think we deserved. We stood by Alias through all the ambiguity and vagueness, they could have at least given us something solid and concrete in the end.

lhaaheim said...

I feel for you GS but all I can say is that I don’t feel the same and while I understand disappointment in the finale I don’t think the writers could have been any better. Also I have a feeling that the finale we saw was not the finale they created but the one that would fit in the time slot. The writers of Alias are not gods, they don’t live in the world of Alias were everything is possible, they are mere humans and I think they did the best they could with a tough situation.

47, as well all know by now is the most randomly occurring number and it was probably used by JJ as a shout to some old friends. My theory in regards to Rambaldi is that he knew it was a special number, believed it signified power or eternal life or something and decided to incorporate it into his works.

“She was never a strong, whole-hearted believer in Rambaldi, but more interested in learning about the roles her daughters played in his prophecy. Somewhere in the frenzy of the final moments, we lost the meaning of Irina’s truth- “The Truth Takes Time.””

Oh I hate to say it but I disagree strongly, I always saw Irina has a strong believer in Rambaldi but up until last night she had kept it in check with her love for her family. And I believe her interest in learning about her daughter’s role in the prophecy had more to do with the prophecy and Rambaldi then what it entailed for her family. Its true Irina loved her daughters but she loved power more and just like Sloane she made her choice. And Syd made her choice too and that choice was to stop her at all costs.

lhaaheim said...

In the process of the last few episodes I saw Sloane change from a man of faith to a man who believes he is the faith. He was no longer a follower of Rambaldi he was trying to become equal to Rambaldi and eventually if Jack hadn’t stopped him his sinister plan moved have moved him beyond Rambaldi. Sloane was on the path to becoming an anti-Christ figure and I think he truly made himself believe that’s what he was destined for.

Its true Syd blamed Jack for taking away her choices but I now think that was more about being upset at the time with everything that was happening and with his consistent deception. I have concluded that regardless of Project Christmas Syd would have been an agent no matter what. It’s who she is and I like that!

Sloane kept Syd around because she actually did fulfill the prophecy for him, she shot him, he died in the Rambaldi fluid and this allowed him to come back. I don’t think Sloane knew exactly at the time how it would pan out but he knew he needed her around and he was right. Thankfully Jack was victorious in the end.

lhaaheim said...

I don’t think P5 used Sydspinoza to lure Syd into P5, I think they were legitimately hoping that as a genetic double she would be able to fulfill the prophecy since Syd was surely not going to help them intentionally.

Oh Micro-self storage! I forgot to mention that but I was so happy to see it again! And it was lovely having Francie back for a bit! Nice to see her and know that Syd was thinking of her! Oh and I just love every Vaughn and Sark fight, so glad they did that, they were both funny!!! Plus I find it so funny that someone who is such a bad ass like Peyton, a P5 shooting, helicopter take down queen, is afraid of snakes! I agree it made her more human and Rachel needed a little vindication.

Oh an Alias movie!!! That would be great!!! I’ve been looking online and so far no word from JJ or anyone about Alias. Has anyone seen anything? I was really expecting for some statement to come out that might help us out. Overall I’m happy with the finale and I can accept the fact that Alias in the past was just too good, so good that it couldn’t overcome itself and give us the finale we all thought we would have. I still think it all comes down to limited time and I hope there is an extended version out there waiting to be made or some deleted scenes. Either way I doubt there is a bow big enough to tie Alias up with, I was so set on being optimistic that I forgot to be realistic. *sigh* this has been tough! I just want season one back!!!

mommer said...

I posted this on the previous blog, but it fits here. I agree with Paul - Sloane and Irina did not have the same I motivation. It seems to me that Irina was the power behind the scenes the whole time - manipulating and striving for ultimate power. she was "The Man," she was behind Syd's torture in "Horizon" and she worked everything to achieve her own ends - from the time she married Jack until the day she died. She was obsessed with Rambaldi, no one could deny that, but more as a means to an end - world domination. Sloane, on the other hand, really believed that Rambaldi and his work would lead to immortality and ultimate peace. He just believed that the end justified the means - any means - and he paid the price for his choices. I'm reminded of the phrase, "Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely."

Anonymous said...

WHEW. I thought maybe it was just me. Ya see, I haven't exactly consistently watched Alias in ... well, years, actually. Ooo, I can hear y'all gasping. ; ) I'm definitely saving up for the ultimate DVD experience. But anyway ...

But hey. Even so, how could I pass up the opp to watch the last ep? But then, watching it, I was wondering if I shouldn't have skipped the excitment and continued the mundane task of loading the rest of my music into my iPod.

I've only posted once before on here, after reading GS's farewell to Alias post. Very nicely written. To repond to her comments about being disappointed by the finale, may I just say that, again, yes, I am also a storyteller, a published novelist actually, and as a storyteller I was completely disgusted with the lackluster writing of the finale. Both hours. The dialogue was terribly stilted, almost to the point of being laughable. The action was over-the-top unrealistic it made the acting seem generic and lifeless. (Just how did they all arrive so quickly to save Marshall and Rachel?) Almost everything bothered me, even Vaughn needing to give Syd CPR. Why would he be pounding her chest after she took such a horrible fall? Breathing, yes. Help her breathe, Michael. But don't kill her trying to save her!

Oops, I'm now into rant mode, and I don't wanna go there. But yeah. This "grande finale" didn't measure up for whatever reason. Time, I'm sure, was JJ's biggest nemesis. But I wish he and his team would have worked just a wee bit harder to overcome this nemesis and flat out get the job done in the face of it. There were several places in the finale when I almost wanted Sydney/Jen to turn and say, "Come on. Does Syd talk like this?"

I don't think we should blame ourselves for expecting too much. For five years we have been expecting good things from Alias and it has delivered above and beyond anything we could have imagined every time. But this time ... wow. The most important two hours of the show, and here we are left ... wondering.

Disgusted.

But I'm still glad to have been along for the ride.

Bring on the DVDs! : )

take care, y'all
donna fleisher

Sidewinder said...

I do agree with you girlscout. Jenn promoted the finale saying all of our ?s would be answered but they WEREN'T!

I too loved moments of the finale and I could see how Irina wanted power and immortality but I just think the writers screwed up and so did J.J. by leaving the show. When he started Alias he said that he had 5 years planned out yeah my butt he did.

I still wanna know who was the Cardinal?
I think they wasted too much time on the new characters. The only character I feel they should have added was Renee and drop the other two.

I do feel empty. Gah i kinda hate the alias writers they said in the mags that the last half was planned out and that they would be the best episodes of the series but they weren't! I mean they were good but not ALIAS AWESOME!! The fans know more about what should be going on than the writers.

I still liked the finale but there are too many ?s left unanswered SHAME on the writers for leading us to believe everything would be answered.

pkrm said...

I think I can finally understand why GirlScout was so disappointed. Truly, the ending and the mythology was not "wrapped up" beyond question. There was still a ton of ambiguity in the ending, and nothing was clear. And for this reason, I do agree, the writers did not tie up all their loose ends, and I can fully understand GirlScout's disappointment. Kudos to her for telling it like it is! :)

The writers left it up to us to dig the answers out, which while not exactly concrete, I actually enjoyed. I've had a good time figuring out the answers for myself, which is why I think I enjoyed the finale so much. It wasn't concrete, but there was enough material to make me happy with what I had come to in my head.

And really, I think that's what this whole discussion is boiling down to. Those who wanted the ambiguity gone and the answers to be clear were disappointed (and rightly so), and those who enjoyed the ambiguity enjoyed the finale (coming to a conclusion that they are satisfied with on their own). :)

Dignan said...

Great recap on 5.17... I too was a bit dissapointed.

I have a few questions that maybe someone can shed some light on:

1. What was the purpose of showing the baby's bedroom that Jack and Renee found? It was never mentioned again... why show it.

2. When Syd is getting a sonogram there is what appears to be a red flashing light in her womb where the baby was... what is that about?

3. Where was the bullet proof vest JACK? And there was a medivac chopter on its way to tend to Jack, are we to assume that they would show up, not find him there, and just leave? No, they would notice somthing from the explosion... call a few people and they would be digging looking for Jack and thus finding forever living Sloane (don't you all think!)

please help!

Dignan said...

Oh, sorry, one more question:

- when Sloan and Syd were in the ice caves and the sun started shining through the pendant and sloane said that Syd couldn't see what was coming next... What was it? Where we given a hint? or was the location shown to him of the burial cave.

thx

Dark Alias said...

dignan, i belive it showd the location of the tomb where sloane was burried. n e ways this is a theory i'd like to share with ya'll.

So i think that rambaldi's end game was to have the have a peaceful world under his rule for eternity. If you piece everything that has happend with Silvoga, last night, the telling, the prophecy. This is a break down. some what...

The Prophecy: With Syd's eggs and Rambaldi's cube they would bring back rambaldi.

Doubling proccess: They would use the brain thing to put rambaldi's brain into syd/rambaldi's child. Bring Rambaldi himself back.

Circumfrence: He'll kill everyone and start over with a select few.

Horizon: Give his select few eternal life.

The Telling: Him and his select few would life forever peacefully under his ruling.

Sydney: the only part she had to play in his end game was to carry the child that was to be him.

lhaaheim said...

I’m with you Paul, I would have liked more direct closure on Rambaldi and while I do think Sloane was after power as well as immortality (which would most likely give him power) I agree with your analysis of Rambaldi, his end game, the prophecy and his crazy followers.

I've been reading one very consistent thing today "there was not enough ______" to me that only reinforces the need the finale had for more time.

Sorry Lisa but when it comes to outside influences affecting the show I don't think that is the case and there have been lots of articles and interviews about Ana Lucia's death on Lost. They intended to kill her all along and it's actually what the actress wanted, citing that she feels she is a nomadic person and wouldn't want to settle into a show for years. Plus this is Alias and Lost, it's not 7th Heaven or some kiddy show, a DUI and a broken relationship (I think they only dated for a month, it's not like they were married) is not going to sway the story line because the writers are worried about people's reputations.

Michael- Good way to think of that all important Alias line "truth takes time". I agree with how you believe it applies. I too am puzzled as to why the finale was not written, directed etc. by JJ. It should have been regardless of how we feel about the episode.

jenn256 said...

way to go GS, I'm so glad you summed it up so well. There are so many unanswered questions, and I fell the characters were so one dimentional, where in the past they were some of teh best written characters on TV. It seemed rushed to me, like the writers had a list of questions to be answered and they sat around and said, "what is the easiest way we can answer these questions in the shortest amount of time". I'm not saying that's what happened, but it just didn't seem up to the caliber of what we have seen in the past. As GS said, we had a whopper of a finale in S1 & 2, why not go for the gusto in the series finale?

pkrm said...

Haha Dark! I love it! That certainly would tie together all the seasons! That idea would make an excellent post for discussion!

It makes me wonder about the clockmaker in season 1...what did Rambaldi give him that made him live so long, but yet not be immortal? :)

Paul

Dark Alias said...

ya paul, i was thinking about the clock maker too. I think that rambaldi gave him the a prototype of the rambaldi juice that made him live forever IF he didn't get hurt or killed.

Robetron said...

GS, I do not mean to in any way defend the flops and thuds of the writers. I agree: they fouled up Irena's character and her part in the whole season. I agree: they tangled the Rambaldi-story so much over the years that it almost seemed impossible to unravel (though, I admit to being glad that they did something more than a big red ball over S'vogda).

There were some things I disagreed with you, but they are minor points. I think that maybe (only maybe, 'cause I know I am only guessing) that the inevitable disappointments caused you to withhold your 'suspension of disbelief' - or at least you (or others) may have stopped looking for the plausable reason or explanation that might bring the seeming-inconsistancies together. All you need is plausability, and no one can say it is a contradiction.

Just for instence: Little Sydney's completion of the puzzel. It is plausable that, while Jack was designing Project Christmas, she found the puzzel, put it together, and that is when he discovered just how special she is, and decided to put her through the rest of his program. It is plausable, and it maintains the integrity of the rest of the story. There may be other instances like this where you might be more satisfied with some other parts.

I know, I know. The last hour was rife with what we can only feel must have been writer's-patchwork. I do not deny it. In Fact, I expected it, and worse, to tell the truth.

Since the complete foul up of the S-3 ending and S-4 beginning, the whole show has taken turns for the worse. I have had the sinking feeling for a long time now, and I have been fairly vocal about it. Why shouldn't we have high expectations? Because they have shown us over time that they were more willing to appeal to the 11 year olds running ABC, than they were willing to hold to the integrity of what made ALIAS the best show ever made. A little compromise here... a little there... Before we knew it, everything about the show had changed except for a few key elements like the actors and their ability to make it believable.

Nevertheless, we hoped beyond hope, and we believed thier promise of a huge pay-off when we should have known better. What we all managed to love about what was left of ALIAS by the time the finale arrived - it was still there. Accepting the bothersome aspects will allow us to continue to enjoy it.

Besides, I know that some of the bothersome aspects can be hashed out by us here at Let's Talk... and it will keep us going , maybe for weeks.

Here's to looking forward to un-making the hash which the writers created. Cheers! See you all again soon.
:D
-R.

lhaaheim said...

"Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Oh great quote mommer!!! And it really gets to what I'm saying about Sloane that even though he had faith in Rambaldi and it was more of a tool for Irina, that the absolute power of immortality would corrupt Sloane’s "greater good". If you act evil and do evil things, nothing but evil will come as a result of them.

Sorry you feel that way Donna, I wish there was something I could do to help but I just have to mention this. You called Vaughn, Michael, which is so creepy and always makes me think of Lauren. *shiver* I'm so happy he is truly dead!!!

sidewinder- "I mean they were good but not ALIAS AWESOME!!!" I'm happy about the episode more then you seem to be but I totally agree with you the finale was good, parts of it were incredible but it was not what we have come to expect from Alias.

dignan- Oh the nursery! Dang it another question! I hope you have an answer Paul!

Good theory DarkAlias, though I'm not quite sure Rambaldi was going to or planned on killing the masses to recreate life for a small few. Again sounds like an anti-Chirst/Hitler type to me and there is no peace or greater good in that. We have free will for a reason and to take that away and have one person calling the shots is unnatural!!! Maybe that's what they meant by the end of natural life???

mommer said...

Jenn, I agree in part, but I think there were some awesome 3-dimensional moments like Carrie & Marshall in bed, Rachel & Syd torturing Peyton, and especially the scene between Jack & Syd after he was shot. And one thought concerning the difference between season finales for Seasons 1 & 2 vs. the SERIES finale is that with a season finale you don't have to wrap everything up - there's always next season to develop and expand or change direction. With the Series finale everything had to tied up or left by the wayside or ignored. There's no place for anticipation of what's to come or what might be. I think Alias ultimately suffered from some of the turns the story took during the five years - it made it virtually impossible to answer everything because some of the turns changed everything (like abandoning the Rambaldi storyline or the creation of APO or Sogovda) It became so convoluted they just couldn't go back.

katybird27 said...

I remeber, as season 4 began a year and a half ago, I threw a huge ALIAS premier party. I couldn't wait to find out what was in that safety deposit box, to find out what Lauren knew what Sydney didn't, to finally get some answers. Yet as the show (and ultimately the season) continued, I felt more and more let down. . This is how I sense you are feeling right now, GirlScout -- betrayed, angry, and unfullfilled. After devoting your spare time to writing a smart, insightful, intelligent blog that analyzes ALIAS from every angle, you receive in return a lackluster (compared to what you wanted and deserved) finale to a show that has been more than just a show.
As for me, I was so afraid that with all of the references to Alice in Wonderland over the years it would all wind up a dream, so I was relieved to find the writers wouldn't stoop that low, as nothing could let me down as much as that. I think if you give this time and space before you watch it again you'll be able to see it for what it is rather than what we all hoped, dreamed, logged on and prophecied it would be -- a competent, but not brilliant, send off of our favorite spy.

Robetron said...

"Rushed"

That's exactly it, Jenn. You got it.

lhaaheim said...

Robby! LOL! The 11 year olds that run ABC! Oh that’s so funny! I agree with you for the most part but I don’t think Alias started slipping in season 3 and 4, the problems started to come the closer we got to the finale and while I hoped it wouldn’t be a factor time ultimately made the finale less then our expectations. 30 minutes, an hour, 3 more episodes, a full 22 could have made a big difference!!! And you are so right about this keeping us busy. If the writers didn’t have the time to make the finale as great as it should be then let’s just fill in the holes and answer the questions. Who better to do so then the show’s most loyal fans!

Mommer- I agree a series finale can not be compared to a season finale. They are entirely different things and we have to remember that even when shows are great series finales are always difficult. TV shows are created to move on and continue, movies are not and it’s pretty hard to give a TV show, especially one as great as Alias, a movie ending!

lhaaheim said...

"I think if you give this time and space before you watch it again you'll be able to see it for what it is rather than what we all hoped, dreamed, logged on and prophesied it would be -- a competent, but not brilliant, send off of our favorite spy. "

So true Katybird, so true!

spyfriend said...

I, too , was disappointed in the finale. I enjoyed the first hour but the second not only seemed rushed but the characters didn't ring true. I don't think it was so much the unanswered questions-I think we all know the characters and the story line enough to fill in alot of the blanks ( though not all). I think they did the best they could with the time constraints they had.

What bothered me was that none of the characters seemed like the same people we have watched for 5 years. As little as we knew Grace -he just didn't strike me as someone who would just sit down and wait to be blown up. He may not have made it but I think he would of at least tried-especially with his interest in Rachel.

Sydney missed Vaughn so much yet we never got to see them reconnect. He came back and it was business as usual and Sydney's talking about Sloan. He was all she could think about and when he's right in front of her she's distracted and talking about Sloan and P5. I think we deserved better than the little we got of Sydney and Vaughn. Even the time at the beach lasted about a minute.

Jack, where's the vest? What a day to forget it, huh? After all the work on Sydney and Jack's relationship I was very unhappy with him blowing himself up. (Seems to be a theme).He surely could have gotten rid of Sloan another way. After all he's Jack and always in control. He knows about Irina and he loves Isabelle. At this point I don't think he would sacrifice himself.

And Irina seemed totally out of character to me. If Irina was as evil as they made her in the end-she could have put an end to all of it alot sooner.

All in all it just seemed forced-the story, the characters and the acting. That said-Alias is still the best thing (in my opinion) that has ever been on TV. And I thank JJ and all involved for so many years of genius and keeping us on the edge of our seats. And thank goodness for DVD's.

lhaaheim said...

There is a bunch of cool Alias stuff up for auction. I won't be buying anything but I thought I would share the info! http://stores.ebay.com/ABC-Alias-on-Hollywoodvault4

BristowVA said...

GirlScout:

I discovered your Blog a few months back and have visited almost daily - thanks for the smart commentary on a truly special show.

Onto my comments about last night. As a loyal Alias fan for the entire 5 year run, I too share in your disappointment. Rather than going into all of the reasons why (as most have already been covered), I was left scratching my head and asking, "is that all they could come up with?" So many loose ends left untied; so many characters and story lines underdeveloped; so many laughable (and not in a good way) moments.

The show was not given a proper farewell either by the writers or the actors. Scenes seemed forced and unrealistic. As much as I love the idea of Syd and Vaughn being together on their beach, a much better ending would have been for Vaughn to have raised Izzy by himself...similar to Jack and Syd. There was no real drama, or angst. Two things we've come to expect from the show.

Anyway, my two cents. Again, love the blog and the various cast of blogger characters.

BristowVA

steph_bristow said...

just thought i'd say, i'm right there with you on all accounts girl scout, i'm especially bitter about the sydney/irina showdown at the end. it felt rushed and lacked the raw emotion we used to get from those two...not good at all!!

uncle111 said...

How's this for the opening of an Alias movie:
We see Syd in some disguise got to be a goofy wig involved)piecing together a modular sniper rifle. She settles in and takes aim at someone a block away standing at a podium receiving an award. We look through the scope as she takes aim, finger slowly depressing the trigger. We see the target. It's Dixon. Bang! Dixon goes down from a clean shot to the head. He's dead. Black screen and the words "One year earlier..." We're off and running.

uncle111 said...

Have you seen that they are taking down the ABC Alias board on Thursday?

bamaaliasfan said...

I too feel very let down about it all, but I am trying hard to except that it WAS the end and to make the best of it. The showdown between Sydney and Irina, when syd reaches out for her mother and Irina reaches out for horizon, made me think back to the Nadia and Sloane scene. Once again it was all about- which one will you choose? Syd and Nadia both loved their parents and reached out for them to be what Irina/Sloane really were, a mother and a father. Both chose Rambaldi over their daughters... a grave decision that eventually cost them everything.

bamaaliasfan said...

uncle... that scene sounds and looks, in my mind, incredible. the wig would have to be the red one from the first episode though. it is my all time favorite! that would be a hook line and sinker moment for me.

Anonymous said...

I'm the most disappointed with how much everyone else seems to be disappointed.
As much as we may want to, we can't change a thing about the finale. We may as well piece together as much as we can that the writers (sadly) left hanging, and remember our dear Alias fondly and as a unique show that broke a television barrier.

Amy said...

Just how amazing was the music in the finale? Listening to it alone is enough for me to shed a tear or two..Now, I'm not musically gifted, though my brother is so I might have picked up on his 'ear' for music, but even if I havent, it was beautiful.

Amy said...

Oh, one thing I was confused about (well, maybe not one, but its the only one I dont even have an idea of how to answer) was why did Irina reach for the sphere, fully knowing the glass would break and she would fall? Was it the hope that she wouldnt die from the fall and be able to obtain immortality?
Just thought this was probably the best place for an answer..thanks!

Amy said...

Final Thought a la Jerry Springer:

Better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all...and I truly loved Alias with all my heart (I still do and always will) I think it gave all of us a little something special, and thank goodness for DVDs so we can carry that love with us forever :)

well, its 1:20am where I am, so I think its time for the computer to be shut down. G'night all.

lhaaheim said...

Nice opening Uncle! Though I think she should shoot Weiss instead of Dixon. I like Dixon good and I wouldn't want Syd to be evil either. It would be nice to have Weiss back too!

Anonymous you are right, our disappoint just keeps growing and growing from one post to the other. I'm all for us posting our theories so please continue to post what you like but tomorrow I'm going to watch the finale again and post about all the things I loved about the episode.

Daniel said...

This is my take on the intriguingly ambiguous culmination to the Rambaldi arc that seems to have baffled some fans who were expecting something else...like a clearer resolution:

The Prophecies
As open to interpretation as they are, all of Rambaldi's prophecies are relatively exact indicating him being present at the events he describes – or – having access/being acquainted with somebody who witnessed them.

Given the context specific prophecies regarding the sunrise & Mount Subasio, the Horse in the finale of S5, Page 47 and its hidden message, Irina's genocidal intentions etc it is my contention that Rambaldi’s source of this information is the immortal Sloane.

Buried alive for Eternity ?
Within the world of Alias, we all know interest and lust for Rambaldi’s devices and prophecies will never die. Some time in the near or distant future some Rambaldi enthusiast will eventually unearth/excavate Rambaldi’s tomb and find Sloane. Perhaps, after having the opportunity of having many years to ponder and have genuine remorse for his many crimes he becomes a penitent and almost mystical Sloane, like the old knight in the finale of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, or just simply a deranged one who will meet the man who will become Rambaldi and impart his very specific and unique knowledge of the prophecies. Making Sloane a gibbering evil loon upon excavation would make no sense and cheapen Jack's death. Jack sacrificed his life to give Sloane the chance to ponder his mistakes and sins for a very, very long time alone and in the dark... This said, Sloane being as clever as he is would expect eventually for somebody to excavate the tomb. Question is would he be sane/or penitent when that day long in the future arrives.

The futuristic Aspects of Rambaldi's Creations and the Immortal Sloane
Remember that all of Rambaldi’s innovations such as the Horizon, Big Red Ball, silly green goop, The Double Helix, the Gene map in the 5th prophet, and De Regno Heart to name but a few are very, very advanced by modern technological standards ;) Perhaps the person who became Rambaldi, intrigued by Sloane studies and reverse engineers the effects of Sloane’s Immortality to create the basis of the knowledge which constituted the 5th Prophet document and the double helix crap. Obviously this individual who is probably the only person clever enough anywhere to do this would have to have an accident/experiment/plot device which would send them back in time to begin the end of the cycle/circle, perhaps to stop nefarious types in his near-future time from acquiring his secrets! If Rambaldi can discover immortality in the World of Alias, is time travel any less plausible?

Back in the past Rambaldi would be aware that they would need create and facilitate all manner of artefacts to have the events involving Sydney that led to Sloane’s eventual entrapment and Irina’s defeat to occur. Thereby completing the referred to 'circle' which creates the prevailing context for the rise of Rambaldi.

Rambaldi's eventual ambivalence towards Immortality
Interestingly, Rambaldi although allowing his allies such as the clockmaker, the Rose, and even perhaps Kill Bill Conrad extended life to facilitate their roles in his/Sloane’s prophecies regarding Sydney did not choose immortality himself. Probably being aware of and regretting the dire consequences it had on Sloane and Sydney’s lives and potentially the whole of humanity.

The Rose guy in episode 15 strongly suggested that Rambaldi considered his discovery and quest for immortality a massive mistake, but was adamant in his conversation with Sydney that nothing could prevent from happening the abomination against nature/God which ‘The 12’ and more significantly Sloane achieved via immortality. This hypothesis indicates Rambaldi knew Sloane would become immortal regardless of whatever happened. This indicates in itself hindsight or an acquaintance with Sloane in the future, as only Jack knows for certain that Sloane was now immortal. However, Jack helpfully gave him all the time in the world to ponder his sins and suffer for them. Jack sacrifices his life to give Sloane the chance to ponder his mistakes and sins for a very long time.

The Limited number of Episodes...
There are a number of additional production related matters that are also worth taking into consideration.
Given how noticeably rushed the final ep was, and JJ’s cryptic comments in interviews that they would have liked to have put more Rambaldi into the final eps if they had more time and episodes, there must have been a wider notion of what the deal was behind Rambaldi and his improbably accurate prophecies and wild inventions. Hopefully, the DVDs will help to clarify the matter.

I suspect JJ knows in his head who Rambaldi really was/is (aside from being the Mcguffin man)... The question is will he ever tell us on screen via Alias spin offs/movies or will anybody ABC/a movie studio let him? Let hope so one day! :)

An Alias movie or spin off with Sydney and Isabel kicking some butt and providing a better sense of closure/explanations (though still slightly ambiguous) regarding Rambaldi, his improbable prophecies and inventions, whilst somehow featuring Sloane al Ghul would be a very welcome prospect in a few years time.

lhaaheim said...

Daniel- That’s a nice twist on how Rambaldi received his prophecies, they were coming from Sloane all along. It makes sense in a way. And I fully agree that Sloane will know that some day someone will find him and help him out however that sometime could be very far off. After her mother died, Sloane was entombed and P5 destroyed, as much as I would like to think it all ended there I’m certain Syd and Vaughn spent some time tying up loose ends and going after P5’s “staff” to kill them or take them into custody. They would use the P5 intel they had to bring as many people down as possible.

Then they probably slowly slipped away further and further from the CIA until they eventually made it to their beach house which just happens to be in an impossible place to find. Thus, the current generation of Rambaldi followers has been squashed and the next will be up against Isabelle and the story will continue on. It took hundreds of years to find Rambaldi’s tomb the first time and here’s hoping it takes a thousand the next time around. Sloane’s sanity is already slipping; I don’t think he will be able to stand that length of time.

Time Travel makes my brain hurt! Time travel would be possible in the world of Alias, anything is. Can I make sense of it, nope! :-D

About Jack going down to see Sloane: I always thought Jack believed in Rambaldi at some level and at the very least was learned enough to be able to figure out the prophecies as he waited for the helicopter. It’s also possible that he knew prior to that and once the pieces were in place he may have felt it was possible. As to Syd searching for him and opening the tomb, if Jack found explosives at the dig site he certainly could have found a piece of paper and pen to write Syd a note. Furthermore I have no idea why they never where bullet proof jackets, they should but it would hinder the story. Furthermore why did just Syd, Vaughn and Jack go to the tomb, couldn’t they take a whole tactical team with them?

Rambaldi- All of this talk about how Rambaldi is good and wanted peace is bothering me now. I don’t think Rambaldi was evil but what the heck did he think would happen by messing with the natural order of life? He was trying to play God and that’s not good and peaceful in my book. Regardless of your beliefs Rambaldi was messing with things he shouldn’t have and considering his intelligence you think he would have known better.

I too hope we get more closure via a JJ interview or preferably on the DVD’s in a deleted sections format or even better through an extended version of the final episode. Will the powers that be let this happen? I have no idea but they would be smart to do so.

Marcello said...

Disappointment. I don't know what to say... so I'll just ask a few questions.

1 - Does the prophecy make sense? I thought the greatest power was immortality... so, was it Irina the one depicted in the end?

2 - How about Syd disappearing for two years at the end of season 2? Why were her eggs so important?

3 - Why Irina wasn't immortal though she had the orb? Otherwise, why reaching for it on the breaking glass? And if that was what she was looking for, why she gave it to Sloane?

How about all those clues and discrepancies left along the episodes? The cryogenic chamber, the microchips inside Renee and Vaughn, Lauren's words before dying...

Maybe, in the end, "the truth takes time" thing was actually intended for us fans, and not for Syd! Maybe we'll never know. And maybe we've been expecting too much and we've been into details more than the writers.

Marcello.

Daniel said...

Ihaaheim,
"Rambaldi- All of this talk about how Rambaldi is good and wanted peace is bothering me now. I don’t think Rambaldi was evil but what the heck did he think would happen by messing with the natural order of life?"

I belive your right and the last three eps seem to vindicate that Rambaldi regretted a lot of what he had done and what would be done in his name. Yet he was as much a victim of the cycle he was part of. Once he and Sloane let the Genie out of the bottle he was powerless to completely stop it. Rambaldi instead he used unwitting proxies like Sydney and Jack to foil Irina and the 12 while at the same time manipulating Sloane via Conrad to fulfil the prophecies, and in my hypothesis ultimately create the eventual context for his meeting with Sloane in the future which will lead him back in time. In classic time travel story nonsense Rambaldi would have to go back in time if possible to manufacture this context or else there'd be a temporal paradox. Syd and co trying to stop the foundations of time and reality from ripping apart by helping Rambaldi go back in time might explain his apparent acquaintance and mild affection for her which is hinted at by the Rose and the clockmaker. Perhaps, Sydney is destined to meet Rambaldi but not quite yet and hopefully on screen at sometime in the future.

Daniel said...

Marcello,

Here's my take on your valid questions.

1 - Does the prophecy make sense? I thought the greatest power was immortality... so, was it Irina the one depicted in the end?

I guess this is deliberately vague/ambigious, but is there any guarantee Irina knew quite what to do with the globe thing. Irina for all her guile was revealed as being somewhat delusional in terms of her intentions.

The main parts of the prophecy I believe do make sense, of sorts. Sydney stopped Irina, and the Rose's prediction about something terrible against nature happening which could not be stopped was Sloane's immortality. Also some of the prophecies were so context specific they had to have been witnessed 1st hand by Rambaldi or related to him by another ie Sloane.

2 - How about Syd disappearing for two years at the end of season 2? Why were her eggs so important?

The Covenant were in some ways a red herring, and Yelena had some supremely screwed up ideas about Rambaldi's intentions. She probably thought she had Irina's role in the Rambadli scheme of things.

Rambaldi's notions of resurrection were either sloppy s3 writing or an idea that he toyed with and then abandoned. Or most probably a combination of both. As the last eps indicate, Rambaldi died a natural death ambivalent to his greatest known invention. So I guess sloppy plotting coupled with hazy Rambaldi intentions and nutty followers equals confusion! I have a hunch each season's Rambaldi specific arc was pragmatically constructed that if the show was cancelled during the season things could kind of be explained through it.

3 - Why Irina wasn't immortal though she had the orb? Otherwise, why reaching for it on the breaking glass? And if that was what she was looking for, why she gave it to Sloane?

Perhaps she didn't know quite what to do with it ? Sloane really wasn't an issue to her, she appeared to have faith in its powers whatever they really were. Her misguided faith being as great as Sloane's.

How about all those clues and discrepancies left along the episodes? The cryogenic chamber, the microchips inside Renee and Vaughn, Lauren's words before dying...

Good questions! Lauren could be referring to the Project Blackbird/Jack's bad arc which JJ had dropped. She could also be metaphorically inferring that Sydney ultimately works for Rambaldi by undoing the harm his works have done in the wrong hands. This would imply the Covenant were somewhat conscious of twisting his legacy.

Rambaldi's ridiculously advanced work on genes (you can't tell me he's not from the near-future) in the 5th Prophet probably inspired the double helix clone crap as a by product. The cryo tube bloke Desantis was an unsuccessful attempt 30 years earlier to apply the process. This in itself shows how relatively advanced the 12's work was back then.

lhaaheim said...

I'll be back later to follow up the last posts but I have to leave now. Real life is getting in the way of Alias again! Paul was number 47 in the other post so I wanted to get it here! Yes I know I'm silly! :-D

uncle111 said...

I used closed captioning to determine that Irina told Syd before their final fight that Rambaldi is LIFE. Then we see Sloane revive.
I think Sloane's plan/vision was to partake of the immortality fluid and then use it on Rambaldi's body to bring him back.

Did Irina manage to use any of the fluid from the sphere before she hit the ground? If so, then she may revive also.

Marcello said...

Thanks for your answers, Daniel.

lhaaheim said...

Wow! Daniel, the time travel idea is really far out there but I do kind of like it and since its Alias, weird things can happen. Plus the time travel theory does play into the importance Alias has always put on time, example “truth takes time” and Bill Vaughn’s watch. I’m not sure that’s the case but I do enjoy the theory!!! The piece I love best and feel would validate it the most is your mention of Rambaldi’s affection for Syd. Very good thinking Daniel!!!

“I have a hunch each season's Rambaldi specific arc was pragmatically constructed that if the show was cancelled during the season things could kind of be explained through it.”

Daniel you are such a smarty pants! I totally agree! :D I also agree that a lot of the loose ends from Rambaldi projects have just been failed attempts at meeting Rambaldi’s “goals” or were just steps people put into place at the hopes that things would pan out and they would be used in the way intended. A great example is the chip; we have to remember that even though Bill Vaughn was a good man, he was into Rambaldi too and could have had faith in him, just not the crazy kind. He and Renee’s father could have put the chips in their children fully believing that they would discover them someday and connect at some point.

Uncle- I don’t think she got to the Rambaldi fluid before she died and I’m certain Syd and Vaughn would have made certain she was dead. If Irina had gotten immortality she would have just jumped up and said told you so or something. It’s not like they could do anything to her then anyway.

lhaaheim said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
uncle111 said...

Yeah, it's bad enough that Sloane could make a come back as an immortal. We DO NOT want Irina to do it:)

Daniel said...

Ihaaheim

You have a good point about Bill's mysterious watch, and the chips. In an attempt to rationalise them I'd say Bill being a good follower of Rambaldi may have been privy to knowledge or prophecies regarding his son and Sydney which he had to help fulfill in bringing down the 12. Its also clear now that he was protecting Nadia from the 12 and Irina when he handed her over to Yelena.

Interestingly, Bill's workbook that Micheal finds in s4 had very complex equations about physics, not explicitly genetics. Did Rambaldi leave clues in other works to the theoretical concept of time travel that Bill and other members of the Prophet 5 workgroup might have picked up on amongst their wider Rambaldi studies? The fascination with time, and his watch stopping the day Vaughan met Sydney are intriguing clues or at least ambiguities...

Anonymous said...

I just saw your initial post and I have to say that I agree 100%. The writers seemed to feel that they could resolve everything within the last half hour. It didn't work, and left way too many plot loopholes, such as:

1- Where does Irina's spontaneous decision to nuke London and Washington come from? Its unclear why she would suddenly decide to do this or how it would increase her power. It's also unclear why she would trade the Horizon to Sloane, knowing how likely he would be to give it back, just to get her hands on the said missiles.

2-If Jack has figured out that Sloane will be immortal upon contact with the Rambaldi fluid, why does he leave the cave with Sydney and pretend as though nothing has happened. Why would the two not try to find some way to stop him then and there. Why would Sydney, who knows at least as much about Rambaldi as Jack does not realize it as well.

3-In the same vein, wouldn't Jack inform Sydney of what he was planning to do, even though it might be too late for her to stop him from doing it. Because otherwise we could expect that Sydney would find out that Jack hadn't been picked up by the medical team. She would realize that the Tomb had been blown up, and might then go searching for her father (dead or alive) in the ruins, and thus end up releasing Sloane.

3- Why would Irina, after years of wanting to help Sydney, try to kill her own daughter. Why would she partner with Sloane after he had killed her other daughter.

4-The screwy timelines throughout the entire episode. How does Sydney manage to get from the cave to Hong Kong and end up right in front of her mother only seconds after Sark, with no initial knowledge of the location? How is it that Sloane wakes up at exactly the same time as this event, which must have happened at least a few hours after he had been shot. How is it that Jack, who was on point of death when Sydney left him, only then comes into the cave.

Marcello said...

I don't want to sound too critical, but there's one huge inconsistency. When Irina and Sydney are fighting on the terrace, Irina is seen on the breaking glass and there's no orb next to her! The next scene is about Jack and Sloane. Back on the terrace the Horizon is right there in front of Irina, like magic.

Even when they both fell from the window, the orb could not be seen falling, though we give for granted that Syd was holding it in her hand after hitting her mother.

I just want to point out how forced the finale was: the Horizon had to be there so that Irina could die... so let's just put it on the less resistant glass of the world. Oh, come on!

They could have done much better things. Sorry, I had to vent!

lisa said...

Um, well, stumbling upon question #2, I would think that Jack--dead Sloane or not--would have wanted to blow up the Rambaldi tomb anyway.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure how much did Jack followed Sloane into those thirty years of his mad quest, but I was pretty sure Jack understood enough to know that everything wasn't impossible (i.e., double Syd, double Francie, double Irina, big giant orange ball on top of a city). And Rambaldi was the cause of all of how much his daughter suffered, so I only assumed that he wanted to blow the whole thing up, so that should anything happen, he wouldn't let Sloane get away, and that he end up in a very cool death scene...or for as little chance as possible to get doubled.

Of course, I'm kidding about the last part, but like many viewers, I also felt that the last ep was a rush.

Robetron said...

I totally agree with every point except that about Jack. Jack, wounded, and fairly certain that death would come before the medivac, waited outside the tomb without having "it all figured out." He saw Sloane shot several times in the body and once in the head. He was sure Sloane was dead. During the wait for a medivac, he suddenly heard Sloane's voice from within (He was talking to the phantasm of Nadia). Realizing that they left him in the Rambaldi-juice, Jack grabs the explosives (who cares from where?), nad heads in to finish the job. Seeing Sloane standing there in perfect health and no bullet hole, he concludes that the rumor of Rambaldi's immortality-giving... stuff (for lack of an accurate term) was true after all. Thus, Sloane is able to say, "You know you can't hurt me, Jack."

It makes perfect, uhh, sense... (Excuse the abuse of that expression).
-R.

lhaaheim said...

Daniel, you offer us such great insight and always in such a well written manner. Where have you been all these months? I can’t recall seeing your name too many times prior to this post. Please grace us with more of your theories; you have certainly started to convince me that your time travel theory could be possible.

lhaaheim said...

Anonymous, hopefully the following can help answer your questions…

1) Irina has been evil all along and has ultimately always wanted power and world domination. Her reasons for helping the CIA in the past were only to prevent others from reaching her goals, thus why she helped take out Elena. Nuking Washington (presumably Washington D.C.) and London would be a major display of power and would certainly cripple the governments of the U.S. and the U.K. as well as damaging their military power which I assume would be her next targets. Basically Irina was going to be the female Hitler but this time with nukes and Rambaldi juice; which she would obtain from Sark who had been working with her all along.

2) I don’t believe Jack knew that Sloane would become immortal at that point, he clearly was in a great deal of pain and Syd was rather distracting. Furthermore someone had to stop Irina and if he hadn’t sent Syd and Vaughn to her then who knows what Irina would have been able to accomplish. I mean they barley got there in time, the countdown had already started.

3) Again I don’t think Jack had figured out what he was going to do until Syd had left, he was pretty busy talking to her and trying to get her to leave, on top of the pain from the gunshot wound. Furthermore even if he did have a plan already there is no way that Syd would have let him do that and in his wounded condition and pretty much otherwise Syd could have physically prevented him. Also if Jack could find explosives at the site I’m pretty sure he could find a pencil and piece of paper to write Syd or the medical team a note in case he was right, that Sloane was alive and that he had gone done to check. Thus, if the cave was blown up, Sloane was alive and if not then they would know where Jack was.

4) I’m pretty sure she didn’t arrive seconds after Sark did and that several minutes could have passed. Plus Marshall, Dixon and Rachel had already figured out where Sark was going and who he was going to go see. In regards to Syd being in Hong Kong when Jack blows up the cave, they obviously didn’t happen simultaneously, but we the audience see them during the same act so the dramatic effect is intensified.

lhaaheim said...

Let me just conclude that while I think Jack hadn’t figured out that Sloane would gain immortality from Rambaldi until Syd had left, I do believe that he went down there without solid knowledge that Sloane was alive. Jack studied Rambaldi in the past and Sloane certainly tried to pull his buddy into it even more. Jack has consistently said that what saved him from the obsession that Sloane had was Syd and how much he loved her. Having said that it’s still possible that Jack despite his rational and practical side could have believed in Rambaldi, and there is a great amount of scientific evidence to suggest that he did so with good reason. Bill Vaughn, also a good man believed in Rambaldi while remaining non-fanatical. I’m not certain that Jack would have been able to hear Sloane talking to “Nadia” and regardless I have a feeling that Jack would have gone down there to make sure Sloane was truly dead anyway.

Daniel said...

lhaaheim

I've been lurking for ages reading and enjoying the comments on nearly all the posts. I guess after seeing the final ep I was finally spurred into action by the ambiguities. I watched the final ep with another big Alias fan and at the end we were "huh" about Rambaldi. We both thought in some ways that although the Jack/Sloane/Irina arc is over, another tale with Sydney and Rambaldi has yet to be told... :)

Interestingly, if Rambaldi was from the future his inventions thus far revealed indicate no willingness to go back to his own time. Perhaps his time travel was an accident or one way deal. Hiding his discoveries in the past protected his own original era and at the same created the context for him meeting Sloane, understanding the propehcies and how to reverse-engineer immortality. In a sense this creates a closed loop or circle. Rambaldi's original era is spared the implications of his discoveries by hiding them obliquely in the past in such a way that facillitates his eventual acquaintance with Sloane which enables him to invent some of them in the first place. Aside from the obvious sense of his fate as poetic justice, Sloane was the only witness to many of Rambaldi's key prophecies and cryptic messages. Killing him off completely really would have closed the door to rationally explaining Rambaldi. For example, he leaves a secret message, presumably for Sloane in Page 47 which launches him on the final part of his demented quest to the tomb and immortality. A journey the Rose told Sydney could not stopped.

Perhaps, one of the original concepts for Rambaldi was time travel but the production staff thought the film Tomb Raider with the concept of secret societies piecing together mysterious artefacts to control time was too similar.

I think your right about Jack wanting to see with his own eyes what had happened to Sloane and also destroy the tomb for a variety of reasons such as preventing it from being used again, penance for how the Rambaldi phenomenon blighted Sydney's and his life etc.

lhaaheim said...

Daniel,

You really have a great overall view of Rambaldi and his prophecy. I love that you base your thoughts off the idea that the story is not dead and that we can use our imaginations to put together what we know is true. That is wonderful out of the box thinking and hopefully someday we might see that your ideas are true in the form of an alias movie. Maybe you can help GS out with all of her questions and plot holes. I would recommend you post in those threads as well. I’m just overly impressed with your thoughts and ideas! :-) Keep them coming if you have more.

PS: I have an idea about the chosen one prophecy and once I look into it a bit more I will post it as soon as I can. I would love to have your insight on that was well.