Contributor: Erin (Raven Wolf)
"Every man before he dies shall see the Devil." (English Proverb 1560)
The hauntingly beautiful music flowing over the snow covered mountains as Frank and Bob climbed to the top placed an innocent, pure image of beauty in the viewer's mind, before once again balancing it with the horror of this terrifying episode. This was one of the more subtle, yet moving scenes to me, as Bob Bletcher recalled his childhood hikes up the mountain with his father, meanwhile creating new memories with Frank. Unfortunately, though they don't know it at the time, this will be their last memory together. To me, this stresses the importance of appreciating such moments in our lives with both friends and family.
Lamentation was the introduction of the character Lucy Butler, who became a prominent figure as Frank's nemesis. Lucy was the latest personification of Legion in Millennium, and Sara-Jane Redmond gave a memorable performance that would be just one of three during the course of the series. She does the work of the devil, in bringing Frank's worst fear, the fear of something happening to someone he loves, into reality. I believe this was meant to, in the course of the show; the first step in breaking Frank's spirit, and, in doing so, make him vulnerable to temptation.
Lamentation is also the first sighting of an X-Files reference as an inside joke for those viewers with sharp eyes. I did not even catch it the first time, and it took a friend to point it out for me. As Frank and Peter walk down a flight of stairs after a meeting about the escape of Dr. Fabricant, you can see Gillian Anderson's and David Duchovny's stunt doubles walking up the stairs and passing them. It was very subtle, and a wonderful nod to The X-Files.
You can see the balance of beauty and innocence with horror and evil depicted quite strongly in this episode. The clue from the bible "Thy mother is like a vine in thy blood, planted by the waters. She is fruitful and full of branches, by reason of many waters." (Ezekiel 1910), leads Frank to realize that the sadistic murderer Dr. Ephraim Fabricant wants to have a child. As Peter points out "They say genius is the ability to hold two contradictory thoughts in your mind at the same time. What do you call a man who holds two contradictory personalities?" Frank simply answers, "The Devil."
Lamentation is packed with some of the greatest horror scenes of the entire series. Fabricant is discovered mysteriously at the hospital, with his remaining kidney removed, signaling the beginning of a whirlwind of horror, as Frank's worst fear begins to manifest, targeting Catherine and Jordan, but eventually striking down Bob Bletcher, leaving him with the guilt of not having been there to save his friend. This was meant to break him, and bring him back to the state he'd been in before The Millennium Group approached him, paralyzing him with fear, making him unable to leave the house, and, in effect, thwarting his ability to be a force for good in the world. This part of the show struck a chord with me, as I had to learn of the slaughter of my best friend and her two sons on the news, though they lived not far from me, and I've had to carry the same guilt as Frank did at not having been there to save them.
Yet again, all this horror is balanced out at the end, as Frank takes Jordan to the top of the same mountain as Bob had in the opening scene, as a tribute to his memory, thus completing the circle. Frank even repeated the message that had been passed down from Bletcher's father, through him, to Frank and now to Jordan. The message of the awe-inspiring mountains was that "Some things never change." All of these elements, as well as some of the best music by Mark Snow of the entire series made "Lamentation" one of the crowning achievements of all three years of MillenniuM.