Did this show ever really HAVE a formidable long-term antagonist, its very own Gus Fring? Benjamin Linus seemed to inhabit that role for a bit before he swerves into more of a wild-card type, and then finally settles into an irrelevant afterthought. I agree, the stuff about his daughter is dumb. Although for whatever reason I do enjoy the reveal that he was basically nothing more than a useless nobody garbageman for the Dharma initiative.
Even though I found Michael's character incredibly tiresome as a regular cast member, he did level up a bit in intrigue in his later appearances. I mean hell, as you put it, even the characters who were NOT tiresome from the original cast end up having nothing to do after awhile. There's nobody this show doesn't manage to ruin, one way or another. Did Juliet do anything this season? Anyway, looking forward to you giving me more flashbacks to the late 2000s as you slowly make all the same observations every other person made on this show at the time. Godspeed.