Tuesday, April 1, 2008 at 10:49AM
Be warned that if you don't watch "Lost," because this post is not going to make any sense to you.
I happen to be addicted to "Lost," which given the show's popularity is not so unusual. I do belong, though, to the silent minority of fans who think that Dr. Jack Shephard, despite his dashing good looks and heroic tendencies, is totally annoying. In fact, there are times that, and I'm not afraid of the persecution that will follow this comment, I hate Jack Shephard.
Imagine my disgust, then, when the results of the most recent facebook quiz I took entitled, "Which Lost Character Are You?" said that I'm Jack Shephard. Clearly, this quiz is completely whacked. I'd much rather be McGyver-like Sayyid or compassionate and sweet Hurley. Besides, this is just a facebook quiz, written by some computer nerd who has nothing better to do than to torture me with the fact that I might be like Jack Shephard. By the way, the irony doesn't escape me that I'm currently writing a blog about said quiz thereby rendering me ten times more geeky than the guy who wrote that quiz.
First of all, Jack Shephard is really bossy. He's also annoyingly dogmatic (For example, why does he still "love" Kate even though she's always coming up with new and innovative ways to humiliate him?) And although he occasionally listens to the opinions of others, he doesn't flinch from his decided course of action unless circumstances prove so dire that he has no choice other than abandoning his way. (Remember that time in season 1 where he was trying to save that rich kids life and it ended up turning into a torture session? The only reason Jack stopped trying to save him was because he died.)
In Dr. Jack's mind, he's always the best man for the job, regardless of what that job might be. In his head, he is always right. Finally, despite all his stubborness, Jack is always unsure of himself, and is annoyingly insecure. He acts like he has the right and the ability to make all the hard decisions on the island, then he sits around moaning about how he might not have done the right thing.
Oh. My. God.
I am Jack Shephard!! Excuse me, I need a minute to collect myself.
Hmm, I guess that explains why I love "Lost" so much. It obviously gives me the opportunity to practice self loathing in new, innovative and interesting ways. Here I thought that the criticism of a fictional character bore no repercussions. Criticizing a T.V. character should afford you the safety to openly disparage another's choices and character without offending anyone or appearing too judgmental, right?
Wrong. It's true of T.V. characters as it is of real people, the qualities we despise in others may simply represent our deepest, darkest fears about ourselves. Furthermore, I assert that the more fervent our dislike is of someone, be they real or fictional, the more that last statement is true.
That in mind, I could give Jack Shephard a break, just every now and then. I could start to try and understand that when he's bossy, it's just because he wants to do the right thing. I could start to understand that when he's being obstinate about a decision, it's because he wants what's best for everyone.
I could cut him some slack and realize that his questioning of himself could just be an attempt at humility.
After all, Jack's motives are sincere and his heart is in the right place. Being nicer to Jack, could be an exercise in being nicer to myself. An act of personal development, if you will. (Did I mention Jack's superhero ability to rationalize even the most questionable details?)
Yes, from now on, I will give Jack Shephard (and myself) a break every now and then. There are worse characters than Jack Shephard.
Like Benjamin Linus.
You'd have to be real sociopath to get that one.