Below are the videos of the interview with Matthew Fox and Kimmel last night and the 12th installment of the ‘Secrets of Lost’. This one is with Jorge Garcia and is both silly and funny as always.
Below are the videos of the interview with Matthew Fox and Kimmel last night and the 12th installment of the ‘Secrets of Lost’. This one is with Jorge Garcia and is both silly and funny as always.
There’s an old truism among Londoners that I always used to hear exploited by comedians when I lived there that the way their buses ran, you’d wait 45 minutes, and then three would come at once. I’m terribly sorry about doing my very best imitation of a batch of errant double-deckers, but sometimes life gets hectic and takes precedent even over Lost, though I know the good Doc would disagree.
That said, WOW! Wowee wowee wow wow. Didja see when the smoke monster…? And he shot Desmond…? And Locke looking all…? And Miles & Hurley going all Han & Chewy on us…? And Dan! Poor Dan. Poor Ellie. Poor everyone. It’s so not going to end well. At least Des is on the mend and looks like he’ll be OK. For now. (*insert ominous music here*)
Season 5 of Lost is now and forevermore to be known as the Greek Tragedy Season™. And it’ll be even more of a tragedy for me if I don’t start tearing through the last few episodes.
But don’t panic. Base eight is just like base ten really…if you’re missing two fingers. Shall we have a go at it? Hang on.
I know that the above quote from dear Mr. Lehrer doesn’t really apply so much except for the “Hang on” sentiment, except perhaps in that, throughout the present-day narrative in “Dead Is Dead,” Ben was starting to show us a side of himself that we’d rarely seen: the side that has a problem he’s not sure how to solve. In fact, harking back to “He’s Our You,” Post-Donkey-Wheel-Turn Ben has if anything been someone giving the appearance of fighting the future. Granted, he’s using a very advanced toolkit of skills and resources that allows him to improvise better than some people’s best-laid plans, and he’s fighting with the tenacity of an animal in a trap willing to gnaw off its own leg, but the fact remains.
In the grandest of Lost traditions, “Dead Is Dead” has re-contextualized previously-seen events, making us see them in a whole new way. From his reveal as the leader of the Others at the end of Season 2 to Ms. Hawking dressing him down in “The Lie,” Ben Linus looked like one of The Major Players in the grand game at the heart of the show. But the cracks in that façade started becoming more and more obvious as time went on…and around…and twisted back on itself…and, well, you get the idea.
But now…now we see it differently. We see Ben chastising Widmore for being too seduced by the perks of being The Other Lama™ only to become, if anything, even more seduced by them in the post-DHARMA era than Widmore likely ever was. Don’t get to literal in assessing the story of Alex as pertains to Ben’s life. When Smokey was showing him that montage (and, by the way, does Smokey moonlight as the background in inane political commercials for wingnut groups? Just askin’…), it wasn’t that Alex’s life was being held as more valuable to the Island than anyone else Ben ever killed, cheated, tricked, or lied to. It was that the story of Ben’s adoptive…OK, larcenous…fatherhood of Alex was indicative of lost humanity.
Ben went from sparing Rousseau’s life and adopting young Alex to being the doting father and faithful Island steward to being willing to sacrifice teenage Alex like a piece on a chessboard. He’d come to value his position and power more than the life of the person closest to him in the entire world. And even then he didn’t get it, choosing not to atone but to compound the wrong by storming down the path of vengeance, willing to take the life of someone who’s never done him a single wrong rather than admit his own complicity in Alex’s death.
It seems that the Island needs its leaders to be able to make hard decisions and do dirty work, but it also needs them to retain their sense of compassion for their fellow human. Why else would the knife be such a deeply wrong choice in the Other Lama Test™? The seed of that humanity remains, as witnessed by Ben’s hesitation to kill Penny Widmore when her golden-haired moppet showed up saying, “Mommy?” And I suspect that this is the only reason that Ben wasn’t killed outright by Smokey the way Eko was at the end of “The Cost of Living.”
And his penance of serving Locke faithfully with a great, big, bolded, italicized, all-caps OR ELSE? Priceless. The Island won’t have any of this self-preservation or -aggrandization. Oh, no, you have to give big, bad Papa Island everything—your pride, your faith, even your life.
You’re the largest liar that was ever created. You and Pinocchio are probably related!
Now, I don’t know if you’ve read your Dante, but the Ninth and lowest Circle of Hell was reserved for traitors and betrayers. And Ben’s betrayed everyone at every turn. He betrayed his father (who admittedly kind of deserved it) by killing him, he betrayed his extended DHARMA family by helping plot their slaughter, he betrayed his leader (Widmore) by mutinying, he betrayed the Island by going off course in so many ways, he betrayed Sayid by cutting loose after making an assassin of him, he betrayed both Locke and Juliet so many times it’s not even funny, and then he betrayed the Island again by coming back when he wasn’t supposed to.
Even despite the admonition…and threat…from Smokey-as-Alex, can anyone really think that he isn’t going to turn around and betray everyone (but especially Locke) again before all’s said and done?
What’s more, what always seems to lurk behind the betrayal is the raw, festering wound that was young, Roger-abused Ben. Think back to his tantrum to Juliet as Ben pettily showed her Goodwin’s decaying body, his petulance as he turned the Frozen Donkey Wheel, his “nyah-nyah” attitude anytime he’s one-upped someone.
The only conclusion I can draw is that Ben, for all his intelligence and endurance (I mean, the man spends most of his time in a state of recovery from being beaten to within an inch of his life, doesn’t he?), is like a child with a toy. Big, bad Charles has what I want. WAAA! Mean old John and Richard want to take my magic box away. WAAA! I’m being sent to my room (the outside world) for being bad. WAAA!
The ultimate tantrum/betrayal of wounded-child Ben can only be yet to come — probably as Ben tries to either a) ingratiate himself with the “Shadow of the Statue” people and/or b) destroy same from within — and you don’t want to be anywhere nearby when it happens.
Gimme head with hair…long beautiful hair. Shining, gleaming, streaming, flaxen, waxen!
OK, I have to ask. Are the hair & makeup people on Lost having an extended joke at our expense? I mean first, we get Jack’s chin-badger. Then we get the Michael Emerson in the ludicrous rug pictured to the right. And Alan Dale in a piece that looks to me eerily like a more “salty” version of my departed father’s kinky salt-n-pepper ‘do. The rest of the time, Lost’s actor image enhancers seem to do such a good job, too.
At least Dale got a stand-in to play his younger Widmore of Arabia self. And Fionnula Flanagan got no less than two stand-ins for various points along her personal history as Eloise “Don’t Call Me Ellie” Hawking.
But we’re actually supposed to buy Emerson as a twentysomething. I mean, the guy’s an amazing actor and all, but at this point I’m surprised they didn’t try to have him play tween Ben as well just to mess with us.
And the second we see Desmond in a novelty nose, glasses, and mustache, I’m taking a hostage.
Right before your eyes see the laughter from the skies and he laughs until he cries, then he dies, then he dies. Come inside, the show’s about to start, guaranteed to blow your head apart!
But the centerpiece (as opposed to the hairpiece) of the episode was the Ben & Locke Show, which has now taken a dramatic reversal. Suddenly, Ben’s mojo is completely gone with his former dupe, John Locke. He can still work a yokel like Caesar without difficulty (alas, poor Ceasar, did we hardly know ye?), even sow the seeds of doubt with no less a Ben-skeptic than Sun.
But rain-divining, Island-attuned, fully faithful Messiah Locke is having none of it, and is going to make a truth out of Ben’s probable lie that he came back to be judged for his misdeeds. And along the way from watching Ben’s waking eyes bug out over seeing him, the resurrected Locke played an oddly ascendant Virgil to Ben’s Dante, out to strip away all of Ben’s self-deception and ensure that the Island actually did get its chance to judge its former Anointed One.
From continued needling about Ben’s notion to engage in the New Otherton (née Dharmaville) “pharisee” life, to reminding Ben that all his manipulations have left him alone, to rubbing Ben’s nose in his previous treatment of Locke, to the repeated hints that Locke was “something [Ben] can’t control,” to ultimately driving home the point that it was no one’s fault but his own (well, and Keamy’s) that Alex was killed. The canary in the coal-mine of Ben’s soul was dead because the toxicity had gotten too high.
But it was Smokey in the guise of Alex who ultimately got through to Ben, laying bare his intent to kill Locke anew and assigning him that most humiliating of atonement: serving the very man he’s manipulated perhaps more grossly than anyone faithfully.
Let’s be completely clear about this. Somehow, Ben thought he could challenge destiny. And he got farther than anyone else…you don’t see Widmore back on the Island, after all. He still failed, just like everyone else has this season, and Locke finally gets to be the Other Lama™, even if it ends up being a comparatively short reign.
And speaking of John Locke, I’m going to part company with anyone theorizing that he’s now an Island manifestation a la Christian Shephard or Yemi. When he says he’s “the same man [he's] always been,” I believe him. He’s just unbound by all the things that prevented him from being the Island’s perfect instrument. His anger, his daddy issues, his need for a self-aggrandizing destiny. I think they’re all gone. I’ll grant that he took a bit of malicious pleasure at Ben’s discomfiture, but one can hardly blame him for that, especially when he’s doing what can only be described as the Island’s bidding. But this just points all the more strongly to the Island being Locke’s ultimate exploiter, which I’ve been banging on about for goodness only knows how long. Longer than I’ve been writing for this site, certainly.
Quick Hits From “Dead Is Dead”:
• I actually find I believe Ben both when he says he knew Locke would be resurrected and that it scares him to death because he’s never seen anything quite like it. The rest in both of those exchanges was typical Ben BS.
• The Temple’s outer perimeter is a half-mile in radius?!? With all the over “the line” galavanting that various Lostaways did, not a single one of ‘em saw a massive stone wall surrounding a circular mile?
• Locke should never tell Ben to “shoot.” Ever. Jus sayin’.
• Smokey gets summoned by unclogging an ancient drain? All I ever get in my bathtub is my discarded hair. Yeesh. The only way that could have been more underwhelming would have been if Ben had filled out a form in triplicate.
• Is it just me or did Anubis look supplicant to the image of Smokey in the Temple hieroglyph? I find this…disturbing.
• Ben looked genuinely surprised to see Jack, Hurley, and Kate in the DHARMA Class of ’77 photo. Curious.
• Widmore got some of the best lines, what with constantly sneering, “Boy!” at Ben and getting in a sweet reference to The Prisoner.
• Locke got so very many great lines: “I was just hoping for an apology.” “You just make friends everywhere you go, don’tcha.” “No sense in me dying twice, eh?” And even his little smile and wave to Frank & Sun. Priceless!
• “What lies in the shadow of the statue?” doesn’t sound like the Snowman Joke so much as some kind of Illuminati secret signal. At last, we have our other party in the “war” that Widmore’s always going on about. I’m coming around to the notion that Ben, Widmore, Hawking, Alpert, and now Locke, are all on the same side here even if there’s internecine struggle.
And now, “Some Like It Hoth!”
That is why evil will always triumph, because good is dumb.
From a Ben-tastic mythology-fest to a Miles & Hurley, pop-culture-laden, authentic Lost throwback to the days of pure flashback storytelling…and another one of those “breather” episodes before the roller-coaster that is Season 5 goes into a three-gee barrel-roll en route to the explosive finish.
Now, the discerning Lost fan had long since figured out that Miles was Dr. ChangCandleWickmundHalliwax’s son. So, that revelation was a distinct non-event to anyone reading this blog. But we still got some good insight into Miles’ character…enough to know that he’s a walking, talking example of the Hedgehog’s Dilemma, more comfortable with the leftover impressions of the dead than with anyone living.
Me, I’d be surprised if someone being brought up under those circumstances and losing his mother so young didn’t develop intimacy issues and a larger-than-healthy dollop of bitter cynicism. And can you honestly imagine being privy to all the mundane, nasty detritus of a dead mind effectively trapped in amber? There’s a reason Douglas Adams construed telepathy as a punishment in The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. (And I thought working tech support could give you a dire opinion of your fellow human!)
Good thing that Miles was playing Han to Hurley’s Chewbacca with the DHARMA van standing in for the Millennium Falcon on their little smuggling run around the Island. Hurley, as always, laid on the wisdom. If people just communicated more, they’d be a lot less miserable. And Ewoks suck, dude. Yes, his spelling may be atrocious and he may be ignorant about the time-scale on global warming and he may not be too swift on the uptake about the nature of time-travel in the Lost universe, but when it comes to matters interpersonal, Hurley seems to have more on the ball than any other character on the show.
You’d also think that Miles would be able to take his own advice as given to Mr. Gray (played by Dean Norris, a regular on the truly amazing Breaking Bad. If you’re not watching this unbelievable show, then start. Now!) not to miss his chance to tell a loved one he is loved. But noooooo…or at least, not yet.
Running on a treadmill after you and I’m running on a treadmill now
But it wasnt going to just be easy-breezy Lucas references from opening to closing credits. No, it wouldn’t be a Season 5 episode if there weren’t a few more inexorable time-loops constricting our characters in their coils.
Yes, the one involving Miles is patently obvious. It’s going to be thanks to him and the rest of the time-travelers that Dr. Chang turns his back on his wife and baby to save their lives, thus making him much less of a “douche” than Miles had been led to believe during his upbringing. (Note the way Miles kind of “fell in” behind Chang at various points in the episode, as if indulging his desire to be a boy following his father’s commands?)
But did you see the look on Hurley’s face as he watched the Numbers be stamped into the Swan Hatch-to-be? It was as if the number chisels were being hammered directly into his tormented heart. That was more painful than watching Jack & Kate, the troublesome twosome, trying and failing miserably at allaying the suspicions of Roger Linus about his dying son’s sudden disappearance. Those two really can’t do a damned thing right, can they. *sigh*
Paternal relations aside, I can’t help but think that the reading of Alvarez of the lethal orthodonture was not Miles’ purpose in being back on the Island. After the events of “The Variable,” I can’t help but wonder if Miles won’t be reading poor, dead Daniel to get at the crucial information in his cranium. I also can’t help but think that Miles is also headed to a bad end along with the rest of the freighter people.
Charlotte seems to have been brought back just to realize she’d been there before and to motivate Faraday to work himself up to thinking he can change the past. Faraday had to fail at that and get killed at the hands of his own mother. And Miles? I have a bad feeing about this…I don’t think he’s going to survive The Incident while Chang does, thus forcing another parent to see the ultimate fate of their child who was unnaturally transported to the past. But I hope I’m wrong. Miles has kind of grown on me.
Things that make you go, “HAH!”
• “Why don’t we carpool? It’ll help with global warming, which hasn’t happened yet, so maybe we can prevent it.”
• “You’re just jealous my powers are better than yours.”
• “Polar bear feces.”
• “That douche is my dad.”
• “Third day we were here, I was on line at the cafeteria, and my mother got in line behind me. That was my first clue.”
• “We should all… get together for a beer sometime. How awesome would that be?”
• Miles’ deadpan reading of Hurley’s alternate script for The Empire Strikes Back.
• Phil getting beat up and tied up.
• Emotional scenes with the dead always seem to cost extra with Miles, then end up getting refunded.
• Did anyone not know that it was Widmore who staged the fake 815 wreckage?
• OK, it was nice to know how Miles settled on exactly $3.2 million, even if it was a little underwhelming.
• Wow, but Bram came off like a recruiter for Jonestown in his attempt to persuade Miles. Kind of creepy. Also, their “team” clearly has nothing to do with Widmore, Hawking, Ben, or Alpert. Makes me happy Miles was so snarky with them.
• I so need to make myself one of those stylin’ black jumpsuits Dan was wearing when he got off the sub.
Stay tuned for the thrilling conclusion of me working through my backlog after “Follow the Leader!”
Jorge Garcia was on Jimmy Kimmel last night and talked about grocery coupons, the next episode of Lost and living in Hawaii.
Be warned the video of the interview contains mild spoilers at the end then a sneek peek of this weeks episode.
Source : sl-LOST
I just found this small interview with Jorge Garcia aka Hurley and thought I would share it with you all. It contains very mild spoilers and very few but I will warn anyway for all you spoilerphobes! He talks about past scenes, his personal life and being called dude. Enjoy.
Source : Dutch Lost
Let’s start with some short non Lost questions. What’s the best band ever?
Ever? Ooo! That’s a bold question. It’s hard to deny the Stones although I listen to the Beach Boys more often.
Who’s the most famous person on your mobile phone?
What’s guaranteed to make you mad?
If anyone hurts my dog.
What’s your most extravagant purchase ever?
What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve ever heard about yourself?
That I’m a sex symbol.
Who would you most like to go to the pub with for one hour?
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
I’m a Ferrari. If they should want to make their movie with say a Hyundai. It doesn’t take away from em being a Ferrari.
What’s been your worst fashion disaster?
I don’t know. I sometimes try to run errands early in the morning in the clothes I’ve slept in.
What’s your favorite smell?
New rain on hot asphalt.
Do you have any recurring dreams?
No, but last night I dreamt a bunch of us were being attacked by hippos that could get up on their hind legs.
What’s your favorite swear word?
I’ll save this question for James Lipton.
What is your favorite part about filming in Hawaii?
Pretty much that. I’m filming in Hawaii. There’s nothing like it.
And what’s the worst part?
Bugs I guess.
What has been your favorite scene of the series to date which included you?
Hmm… I shot one that hasn’t aired yet that I like very much. I can’t say right now though.
And what is your favorite scene without you?
I liked the scene when Locke is trying to convince Jack to push the button. I’m actually in it, but I’m kinda on the sidelines. I just like being a spectator on set for it.
If you could change a scene of a previous episode on Lost, which one would it be, how would you change it and why would you change it?
I’d probably cut the scene where Hurley dips mango in ranch dressing.
During which scene did you have the most fun?
Driving the van was fun.
If you had to pick any other actor to play the role of Hurley who would you pick?
I don’t know.
Do you want to know Libby’s back story as much as the fans do?
Are you enjoying the Dharma Initiative 70s storyline?
The jumpsuits are a lot of fun.
The information we have on Episode 13 so far implies that Hurley and Miles are going to have a lot of screen time. Would you consider this episode to be a Hurley centric, a Miles centric, or is the focus pretty much equally balanced?
Well it’s not hurley centric.
Does Hurley get some kick-ass lines/scenes in episode 13?
What do The Numbers mean to you?
I don’t really think about them too much.
Why do you think Hurley can see Jacob’s Cabin?
Because he’s “touched”
How many times in your life did someone walk up to you and said “Dude…”?
Don’t know. It happened today though.
Do you like it when people recognize you and ask for an autograph or a photo?
It’s usually fine.
Did you film scenes for upcoming episodes with people Hurley has never interacted with before? (Richard, Faraday etc.)
Which character/actor would you like to spend more screen time with?
I don’t know. I enjoy shooting with everybody.
Do you think you’re going to cry when you finished shooting/watching the last scene of season 6?
Best. Last Line. EVAR!
I mean, really, did you see the look in Ben’s big, bugged-out blues? Classic! Then, Locke smirks, smash-cut…*pah!*…”LOST.” That, my friends, is how you end an episode and leave ‘em wanting more. Truly, do you ever get enough of Locke and Ben? I know I don’t!
And what about Miles and Hurley? Much like Sawyer and Hurley in the pre-Sawyer-as-derring-do-er days, those two sure know how to provide some great comic relief doubling as being the in-show voice of the fans. Ahhh…good times, good times.
And Sawyer and Juliet! What great chemistry they have. How heroic, how noble, and how smart are they, eh? Truly the golden couple of the show right now, and not just for both being blondes.
Oh, wait… *le sigh*
I suppose I should mention Kate seeing as “Whatever Happened, Happened” was one of her centric episodes and all. And really, where does she get off having a second centric episode in the time travel season anyway? All right, all right. We’ll start with her, and then get to the good stuff, m’kay?
How can you have any pudding if you don’t eat your meat?
And I do have to be fair to old ferret-face. She’s shown some character growth even if she hasn’t picked up any acting chops. Kate did The Right Thing™ at every step along the way of this episode, both on the Island and off it. Let’s break it down:
• She gave Aaron to the one person who should really him in Claire’s absence, Claire’s mum, thereby paying proper attention to her near-Claire experience. (Called it!)
• She told Carole the truth about Aaron and that the O6 lied.
• She told Cassidy the truth about the O6′s lie.
• She honored her promise to Sawyer to deliver the money for Clementine.
• She went above and beyond to save a poor tween boy who’d been shot, even if that boy grew up to become the Ben Linus we all love to hate.
• She never once reproached the suddenly contrite Roger Linus for his woeful lack of quality parenting.
• She delivered news back to a grateful Sawyer about Cassidy and Clementine.
• She even took the news of Sawyer’s “doing this for her (Juliet)” with its accompanying backhanded message about Kate’s prospects with Sawyer without even flinching.
• Even though we saw it in “316,” Kate still got on that plane to face up to her destiny on the Island.
So, this isn’t the same old “making messes and running away from them” Kate. We get it.
You want answers?
I want the truth!
You can’t handle the truth!
But there’s something even more important going on in there, in the off-Island bullet-points. Can you see what it is? No, it’s not that she’s going to be single for at least the foreseeable future, though I’m pleased as punch about that, too.
It’s that Kate has joined Hurley and Locke in a very exclusive club of off-Island people: those who’ve exposed the lie of the Oceanic Six. But why, you may well ask, is that important?
Because this little trend is putting into place something I think is going to be a very important plot development for Season 6. Call it the “815 Truth Movement.” To paraphrase the ever-pithy über-pilot, Frank Lapidus, you know those nuts that think 9/11 was an inside job? Well, this is like that…only real.
The list of people who know some or all of the truth about the Oceanic Six’s deception, or who will vociferously question their re-disappearance is growing. Carmen & David Reyes, Cassidy & Clementine Phillips, Carole & Aaron Littleton, Mr. Paik & Ji Yeon, and Waaalt could sure grab some media attention if they went and validated the conspiracy theories about Oceanic 815 that have already been hinted at by the “The Oceanic Six: A Conspiracy of Lies” bonus feature on the Season 4 DVD set. And none of them would be the sort to be silenced or placated by anything Ben Linus, Charles Widmore, or their operatives have to offer. (I’d have added Desmond, Penny, and wee Charlie, but I’m somehow sure they’ll be on the Island sooner than next season.)
There are also just too many on-screen instances of this sort of “loose end” being left now to ignore the evidence. I’d actually been pondering this going all the way back to Hurley’s original admission to his mom in “The Lie,” though I only brought it into these pages with my treatment of the last Kate-centric episode, “The Little Prince.”
In the larger sense, the only confirms to me that the off-Island world is actually going to be a major factor in the end-game rather than just fading into the background to focus solely on the on-Island chess-match, which I still think is all about finding out whether or not the time-stream can be altered after all…or else, in the words of the always-cheery Eloise Hawking, “God help us all.” Or is it the alteration that one side wants to perform that God needs to help us avoid? Alas, we have too little info as yet.
Oh, of course! It’s all about you, isn’t it?!?
Of course, one of the benefits of having the “present-day” storyline happening in 1977 DHARMAville (future site of New Otherton!) is that everything has become something of an extended Ben flashback, allowing us not to have to think about dramatically lesser characters like Kate too terribly much if we don’t want to.
And before we get into the heavier plot elements, I just want to take a moment to reflect on the fact that we actually, finally got to see a different side of Roger Linus than “abusive asshole” or “dessicated corpse.”
I have to admit that, after seeing Jon Gries playing far gentler souls like terminally shy savant Lazlo Hollyfeld in Real Genius and lovable techie Broots in The Pretender, seeing him be so mean to young Ben was causing me no end of cognitive dissonance. So it was a bit of a relief to finally see Roger express a positive human emotion by confessing to Kate his shortcomings as a father and expressing due concern for the life of his boy.
If only it weren’t a case of “too little, too late.” Just another one of the many poignant stories woven together on this crazy drama we all love so…
Now, in the latest performance of the predestination loop mambo, we have evil, cruel, nasty Ben bringing assassinified Sayid back in time to shoot young Ben so he can become cruel and nasty enough to want to do that to Sayid. (I’m still holding out for Hurley to be the one in whose voice The Numbers were being broadcast when Leonard Simms heard them…)
We also have Hurley raise his one good question in his dialogue with Miles about the nature of time travel—that of why Ben didn’t remember Sayid shooting him—only to possibly have a possible answer given shortly thereafter by Mr. Guyliner himself.
Annnnnd a big question about the mysteriously-migrating gunshot wound flip-flopping which side of the Prime Meridian of Ben’s hoodie it’s on between “He’s Our You” and “Whatever Happened, Happened.”
There’s already been a lot of wailing, gnashing of teeth, and rending of garments about both of these questions. Some people think that the “he won’t remember any of this” line was too facile in explaining why, as Hurley was curious to know, Ben wouldn’t remember Sayid as his would-be killer upon being tortured by Sayid as “Henry Gale” in the Swan hatch in 2004. And does it mean that Ben suddenly doesn’t remember anything before that point at all, making his lie about being born on the Island into his belief of the truth? Or else surely that means he actually remembers everything!
Well, I’m going on record to say that both are wrong. The only “all this” Ben won’t remember is being shot and handed over to the Others…and probably the day or two previous, in which he would have met Sayid. The rest of his fucked-up upbringing, including the fact of being brought to the Island at 8 years old, he’ll remember. After all, he’s still going to need a reason to still hate Roger enough to gas him up close and personal even though I’m quite sure Roger will moderate his parenting style upon miraculously getting his son back alive. And what’s more, some part of Ben, conscious or otherwise, is going to retain the memory of being shot by Sayid, adding fuel to the fire of Ben’s treatment of Sayid from 2005-2008. But I’m betting it suits the Island’s/Jacob’s/Smokey’s purposes for Ben not to remember Sayid clearly when he’s captured in 2004 despite having other foreknowledge of the time-tripping Lostaways in DHARMAville remain intact.
And to the “total amnesia” proponents I only ask this, did Robert and the other members of the French team forget their past lives after being mysteriously reprogrammed by the smoke monster in “This Place is Death?” Based on the intimate knowledge of their past together displayed by Robert in his final standoff with Danielle, the answer to that is a very clear “no.”
The whole world keeps spinning around me. All life is future to past, every breath leaves me one less to my last.
Now, about that gunshot wound…
A quick look at the screencaps is enough to show that this wasn’t a simple case of horizontal inversion, which is more common than you think in TV shows. Checking out Young Ben’s hair in both scenes nixes that. So we’re left with either a pretty colossal continuity error on the part of Lost’s costume and makeup people or else another one in an ongoing series of small alterations indicating that someone or something is somehow constantly changing the timestream in small ways, as in the case of the mysterious pictures on the stairs (pictured right) during Miles’ ghostly powwow back in “Confirmed Dead.” There have also been slight dialogue differences in each revisiting of the scene at the pier between the O6 and Ben, which strikes me as very odd since it’s not like they didn’t have the script for “This Place is Death” lying around to double-check against.
I’m certainly not beyond believing that it’s easy to make mistakes from one episode to the next or even one day of shooting to the next on a show as complicated and intricately-plotted as Lost, nor even believing that at least some of the examples I’ve cited, or that others would cite, are in fact bloopers. But there are just too many of them and some of them are just plain too egregious to simply be errors. I’ve been saying it for some time now, but it bears repeating: the timeline of Lost isn’t fixed and fully fated…for the right people or beings.
Like the Island itself. And Desmond. And quite possibly Walt.
I mean, just think of the ripples through time it would have taken to ensure a failure to fire in both Michael’s and Keamy’s guns, preventing Michael from dying before his appointed time, for example. Or to orchestrate a rare bird smacking itself dead into the Lloyds’ window right as Walt and stepdaddy were talking about it all the way back in “Special?”
It’s just that for poor schmoes like the rest of our Lostaways, all they can do is follow along the tracks through time that only they can’t see.
You’re worn and used and you cant talk. Your flight has been postponed, now you must walk…straight up that hill, now you must push your own rock.
Which brings us to easily my second-favorite scene in the show: Hurley and Miles sounding a lot like arguing Lost fans with Miles playing the generally clued-in role and Hurley being mostly sans clue, aside from the insightful question about Ben’s memory that probably has nothing to do with time travel at all.
What Miles was trying to explain to poor, unequipped-to-cope Hurley was the difference between objective and subjective time (which I was busy defining way back at the beginning of the season, if you’ll recall). All of which makes me wonder why there weren’t more sci-fi geeks among the Lostaways. Maybe the Island didn’t want anyone around who could really explain things properly to the returned O6ers, hence the disappearance of Faraday.
But getting back to the point, it really is quite simple, as I’m sure the vast majority of the readers here will agree. But for the confused few, it’s quite simple…everything that the time-travelers experienced up to the point at which they were thrown back to the ’70s is subjectively “past” to them. They lived from their respective birthdates one day at a time until the Island started its time-skipping (in the case of the Left Behinders), or until the flash aboard an out of control Ajira 316 (in the case of the time-tripping O6ers). So, their existence in early 2005 or early 2008 is in no way contingent upon their surviving their experience in 1977.
But people who haven’t time-traveled to the past, but are merely the 1977 versions of people we know in the 2000s can neither die (e.g. Ben) nor be prevented from dying (e.g. most of the DHARMA Initiative) no matter what the time-travelers do. By the time we get to 2004 and the crash of Oceanic 815, Ben is alive and the DHARMA Initiative is dead, and that’s all there is to that.
Got it? Good. Miles was 100% right and Hurley was 100% wrong, as much as we love him.
That’s what the title is all about. Nothing that any of these people do during the DHARMA days can even possibly be anything different than what the future knows they did. No matter how “unpredictable” you try to act, your actions will inevitably be exactly what they always would be. And it’s that knowledge that drove poor Daniel Faraday quite mad after the last time-skip took him away from the mortal remains of Charlotte Lewis, which now resides forevermore on the Island in whatever ancient time that was when the statue still stood.
The only exceptions, as previously stated, are those special, exceptional “wild-cards.” But will their influence be enough to enable whatever alteration one side or another of the Great Game of Lost is trying to get away with? This is exactly why Season 5 is all about giving fate the edge, so that free will can be the fan-favored underdog going into the all-important Season 6.
Hello there, ladies and gentlemen! Hello there, ladies and gents! Are you ready to rock? Are you ready or not?
And finally we complete the circle and arrive back at that most triumphant episode ending. That better-than-classic-Lost moment we’ve been waiting for since “The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham“…Ben getting an eyeful of one seriously resurrected Locke.
And it was all we could have hoped for and more.
We got some genuine-looking shock from The Man Who Always Has a Plan™, a righteous smirk and verbal smackdown from The Once and Future Island King™, and the setup for what looks to be a big-time, bad-ass Ben episode called “Dead Is Dead”…even if it should be called “Dead Is Dead (Unless You’re the Island’s Miracle Boy).”
So, is Ben’s look actual shock, as in “How can you be alive?!? I killed you!”? Or is it disbelief more along the lines of, “I knew you’d come back, but…holy crap, it actually happened! Now there’s something you don’t see every day.”? There’s only one way to find out, isn’t there. And even then, Ben might lie through his teeth.
Still…”Hello, Ben. Welcome back to the land of the living.”
While we all know his gesture is doomed to failure (and if you don’t you have to stay after and clean the erasers), leave it to Sayid to be the one to fight the future…to try to put a bullet right through the heart of fate itself. And a young Ben Linus. Who else among the Lostaways has the brobdingnagian brass cojones to actually attempt to divert the stream of time itself?
Have I mentioned Sayid’s always been one of my very favorites since the pilot episode, along with Locke? ‘Cause he is.
All the more pity, then, that his self-assigned “purpose” will only bring about the exact fate he hopes to avoid, in the very best Greek Tragedy™ tradition, sealing the latest in a series of known Lost predestinstion loops. Or, to use a more recent example, like Bruce Willis’ character in Terry Gilliam’s amazing 12 Monkeys.
Unfortunately, this leaves your humble author in a bit of a bind. What to theorize about when the direct effects of this episode are completely obvious despite an inevitable attempt (and failure) to set up dramatic tension next episode about young Ben’s recovery from Sayid’s gunshot. He’s gonna live. Duh. Like the man said and like they also named next week’s episode: Whatever Happened, Happened.
Thankfully, that’s not all there was to “He’s Our You.”
One pill makes you larger and one pill makes you small…
And I have to say that I was more than a little disappointed. I mean, yes, we got ourselves our umpteen-thousandth inversion on Lost and got to see Sayid suffer poetic justice for his time as an torturer (again). But really…when Sayid had Sawyer tied to a tree, we got some “bamboo shoots under the fingernails” action. All “psychopath” Oldham had was some light bondage enhanced with drugs.
In some of the circles I’ve been known to run in, this constitutes “a fun way to spend a weekend.” And the use of “truth serums”—particularly ones that will make a hardened ex-Republican Guard cackle with glee—hardly seems an inhumane form of interrogation.
I can only hope that we’ll see Oldham again, if only so that we can get some actual evidence of his allegedly psychopathic nature, ’cause so far, I’m just not buying it. If he hasn’t flayed anyone alive or performed an act of equivalent lunacy by the time we get to The Incident™, I’m going to feel severely let down. Though, that said, it’s always nice to see an old friend from Newhart getting work.
But I’m betting we’ll get more from DHARMA’s resident psychopath before we’re through. Keep reading.
In the meantime, Sayid got to play Cassandra and Chicken Little all rolled up into one, spilling the beans about his origin, Sawyer’s old handle, an intimate knowledge of DHARMA stations yet to come, and the mass murder of the Purge, only to be believed by nobody but his fellow time-traveler. Well, maybe by Radzinsky a little.
By the way, is it just me or are you also starting to feel less and less sad about the fact that Radzinsky ends up a splotch on the Swan station’s ceiling? Every time he opens his mouth, I like him less and less.
And he wore a hat, and he had a job, and he brought home the bacon so that no one knew…
But all the excitement and the “kiss kiss, bang bang” simply has got to result in the blowing of our time travelers’ cover. There really isn’t any other way this can go down. It may not happen next episode, or even the episode after that, but it will still be the release of Sayid and the shooting of young Ben that ends up being the root cause of Sawyer, Juliet, et al being found out.
Even if they manage to smooth over the actual release—play it off as a young boy entranced by one of the mysterious Hostiles to do his bidding—the Oceanic 815ers are going to somehow break character or otherwise act suspicious. And, despite Roger Linus’ opinion of the DHARMA Initiative, it’s not exactly full of dummies. Horace, Radzinsky, Chang…clearly big brains, all. Once they actually have reason to scrutinize all the mysterious arrivals in their midst, their shoddy cover stories will develop more holes than a centipede’s bowling ball.
Besides, we still haven’t seen Faraday kneel to fate and warn off young Charlotte yet or do his Radio Free DHARMA act with Pierre Chang, so we know that they’re going to be believed as being time travelers from the future before the season’s out at the very least.
You’re so vain, I’ll bet you think this song is about you. Don’t you? Don’t you?
And speaking of time travelers with flimsy stories who attract chaos, I have to admit that it was with no small amount of schadenfreude that I saw Jack and Kate reduced to practically being spear-carriers in this episode, actually requiring Hurley to bring news from over at the cool kids’ table. If you’ve been reading my synopses and analyses here for any length of time, you may have developed the entirely correct opinion that I don’t care for either of these characters or actors very much.
I didn’t really have much else to say with regard to those two except to ask what the hell Sawyer was thinking going knocking on Kate’s door instead of Juliet’s before the burning bus rolled in and all hell broke loose. And, oh yeah, is it just me or is it completely obvious that sooper-surgeon Jack is somehow going to be required for the saving of young Ben, in yet another of Lost’s many mirrorings (going back to “I Do,” when he operated on an adult Ben)?
I repeat myself when under stress. I repeat myself when under stress. I repeat myself when under stress. I repeat myself when under stress. I REPEAT!
If there’s one thing this episode had in spades, it was mirrorings, echoes, and inversions. These are common in Lost, of course, but this episode was chock-a-block…see for yourself:
• Young Sayid kills to prevent his brother from having to, echoing Eko’s flashback in “The 23rd Psalm.”
• Ben “frees” Sayid from assassinations in the future in a perversion of his freeing of Sayid from captivity in the past within this single episode.
• Sayid is, yet again, tortured…though this one most closely resembles his torturing of Sawyer in “Confidence Man.”
• Illana flirts with a drunken Sayid in a bar, mirroring Ana-Lucia sitting next to both Jack and Christian Shephard at various points.
• Illana dupes Sayid with sex only to attack him, much like Ilsa in “The Economist.”
• Sayid knocks back glass after glass of extremely expensive MacCutcheon whisky, the same whisky denied Desmond by Widmore, then presented to Desmond by Charlie and Hurley (both in “Flashes Before Your Eyes“).
• Sayid sees an echo of his own hard-ass father in abusive Roger Linus…not that it stops him or anything.
• Young Ben’s repeated sandwich deliveries aimed at getting something from Sayid mirror Juliet’s plying of captive Jack with cheeseburgers on several occasions during early Season 3.
• Sayid’s lie that he was actually there to bring Ben back to the Others mirrors Ben’s later lie to Locke that he was the Lostaways’ captive for the same reason. (“Two For the Road” Thanks, Bundt! -SL)
• Sayid denies that he’s a killer by nature to Adult Ben on one tropical Island only to affirm it to Young Ben on another.
• The cyrillic writing over the door as Sayid leaves the building after killing Andropov reads “Oldham Pharmaceuticals” and later, Sayid will be interrogated by Oldham with pharmaceuticals.
• A be-hoodied Ben uses fire as a diversion to liberate Sayid much as a be-hoodied Charlie used a fire as a diversion to abduct Aaron in “Fire+Water.”
• Ben gives a book to captive Sayid like Locke will give books to a captive Ben on two separate occasions.
• Young Ben burns a vehicle, creating chaos, just like Walt burned a vehicle (the first raft), creating chaos. (“…In Translation“)
• Even Hurley, practically in a cameo, echoed his stint as Keeper of the Food in “Everybody Hates Hugo” by becoming a cook for the DHARMA Initiative.
Like I said, even by Lost standards, that’s a lot. In this case, I think it’s meant to drive home with all the subtlety of a jackhammer (but hey, sometimes subtle is overrated) that our characters—and particularly our centric character, Sayid—are trapped in the machine of this giant time-loop and cannot escape.
Whatever happened, happened. The record of everything our heroes did in the ’70s has already been written and nothing they do can be anything other than what they’ve already done. And even worse, some people know more about this than they do, what with living in 2004-2007 with a solid thirty years to review things.
Can there be any doubt now that Ben knew exactly what would happen when Sayid returned to the Island, that Sayid’s subjective future held the event Ben could hardly have forgotten from his subjective past? Or, for that matter, can there be any doubt that Ben remembers the entire Class of 2004 from his youth and has at least some foreknowledge extending beyond the crash of Ajira 316? Really, the only unsure question in this paragraph is this one: Did Ben know in advance that Locke would be resurrected upon his return to the Island? His dialogue in “The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham” inclines me to think he didn’t know, but it’s still going to be very interesting to see his face when confronted by the Island’s risen messiah.
Getting back to what I said at the beginning, though, you really have to admire Sayid’s moxie for being the one person to try to defy fate, even if it’s completely impossible.
Much like Sayid himself, if you think about it.
I honestly can say that I don’t know which episodes are harder to recap, the major league geek-fests like “The Constant,” “Jughead,” and the last three season finales, or the bridge episodes like “Something Nice Back Home,” “Greatest Hits,” or “Namaste,” that are more character-based drama while putting people in place for the next mythology and plot barrage. As an amateur Lostologist, the former seem to have too much meat to them, forcing me to pare down my synopsis and analysis for fear of losing people in the Lost fan-blog equivalent of War & Peace. On the other hand, the latter always make me think even harder to cull out the good bits in order to say anything exciting.
But, with “He’s Our You” looming mere hours away, I do think I have a few keen insights to glean from “Namaste,” impacting Lost’s past, present, and future and very much befitting a show with time travel at its core.
Like for example, notice that the ever-instructional Dr. Chang is seen wearing a Swan-logo lab coat in the new-DHARMA-worker orientation video in an episode in which we see Radzinsky actually designing the not-yet-constructed Swan station? Mere continuity blooper or…something more? (*dum-dum-DUMMMM!*)
That’s why I’m paid the big bucks…oh, wait, I’m a volunteer here. Blast!
It’s a big rock finish, a big finish…the plane is going down. It’s a Tin-Pan Alley grande finale, just seconds from the ground!
There are so many things on Lost we still don’t know, but one thing of which I’m 100% certain is that, if I’m ever in aeronautical peril, I want Frank Lapidus at the controls. Can that man fly or what? Notwithstanding the freak “leaf on the wind” outcome of his Ajira copilot, has he ever lost a passenger…even one? Not that we’ve seen in two completely insane chopper landings and one deeply adverse airliner set-down. Not since Catch-22′s bomber-pilot, Orr, have we seen any pilot so adept at crashing without casualties.
I mean, OK, he got the assist from the Others’ foreknowledge in building the runway on Hydra Island back at the beginning of Season 3, but it’s still pretty damned impressive. And, by the way, that suspenseful landing sequence gave us confirmation for the slow about said runway which the astute among us had picked up episodes ago.
Which, in turn, also verifies that the Others have had the aforementioned foreknowledge of the landing of Ajira 316 for several years…which we also already knew. I’ve been banging on about it for weeks now.
See what I mean about these bridge episodes?
Still, that was one exciting landing sequence. Serious kudos to Jack Bender for directing a scene that actually had us on the edge of our seats even though we knew exactly how it would end. That’s talent right there. There’s a reason he’s this show’s go-to director, you know?
(Side note: Anyone wanting to see more excellent work from both Mr. Bender and Lost’s own Kelvin Inman, the inimitable Clancy Brown, could do far worse than to spend about 24 hours of their life watching the brilliant—but tragically killed mid-cliffhanger—HBO series, Carnivàle. Layered storytelling, rich symbolism and allegory, slow-building creepy wrongness…it’s a Lost fan’s delight!)
And, in all fairness, we did get one tantalizing detail out of the landing sequence: hearing the Numbers on the plane’s radio as they were coming in to land. Someone at some point between the Lostaways finally stopping Rousseau’s recording in “Through the Looking Glass” circa 12/24/04 and Ajira 316′s landing in early 2007 actually turned back on the repeating broadcast of the Numbers that’s caused so much mischief over the years since the DHARMA Initiative started the broadcasts. I’ve seen some recappers say that it was either a continuity goof or else proof that some major alteration had occurred in the Lost timeline, but I’m not buying it when such a simple explanation functions at least as well. I like to keep my Occam’s Razor sharp.
Moles and trolls, moles and trolls, work, work, work, work, work. We never see the light of day. We plan this thing for weeks and all they want to do is study. I’m disgusted.
At long, long last we finally got to meet the storied Radzinsky…he of Blast Door Map fame, responsible for one of the biggest “TiVo moments” in the history of television. And he’s kind of an ass. The way he was acting toward Jin kind of makes feel OK with knowing that the station he was designing would eventually become his prison, then his mausoleum. It also makes one wonder if being moody was a requirement to staff the Flame station given the proclivities of its subsequent Other inhabitant, Mikhail.
But, clearly, the man had a grade-A cranium or else he wouldn’t have been designing a station with the ability to harness sufficient electromagnetic energy to cause an implosion large enough to leave this crater, cause passing jetliners to crash, and actually unstick the triggerer of its fail-safe mechanism in time.
Also, clearly, Radzinsky is going to be completely instrumental to the plot at least until the end of this season. If anyone’s going to be able to help (the seemingly MIA) Faraday and Chang beam a message to the future with 1970s technology, it’s Radzinsky. Likewise, he’s also obviously going to be the recipient of a hefty dose of future knowledge one way or another. Jin already piqued Radzinsky’s suspicions by asking about mysterious plane crashes that never happened, and both Sawyer (er, ‘scuse me, LaFleur) and Radzinsky isn’t dumb enough to fail to notice that both “LaFleur” and Jin were treating their captured “Hostile” in a rather unorthodox manner.
He’s onto ‘em and he’s going to get to the bottom of things, mark my words. And hey, if anyone’s going to be able to grok something as quantumly-insane as time travel, it’s going to be the biggest of the big brains among the DHARMA Initiative, don’t you think?
Only someone with foreknowledge would have designed the protocols of the Swan Station exactly the way they ended up, complete with fake quarantine procedures and a blacklight-rich lockdown mode, the better for Locke to see his mysterious map about 27 years later. This guy is going to be up to his eyeballs in “The Incident,” even if he appears to survive it long enough to recruit and train Kelvin before finally having his spirit crushed by the inexorable gears of predestination.
Take it easy on the kid, SilverFox316; everybody kills Hitler on their first trip.
And speaking of predestination, poor Sayid hasn’t gotten the memo about the Grandfather-Paradox-free nature of time travel in the Lost universe quite yet. Our unlucky hero had the misfortune to be placed far enough away from Jack, Kate, and Hurley that he wasn’t getting rounded up by Sheriff LaFleur and passed off as a new DI recruit. The Island is being a perverse little land-mass in this, just as it is in seemingly-capriciously separating Jin and Sun by a few decades.
You can see it in Sayid’s eyes the second young, comparatively innocent, Ben Linus introduces himself while rather sweetly bringing Sayid a sandwich…even if he forgot the mustard. He’s going to go all Sarah Connor and try to prevent his dire future from happening, and thereby become extremely frustrated when he’s inevitably unable to do so thanks to the fact that we know Ben Linus manages to live at least until early 2007.
It’s actually enough to make me fear for Sayid’s safety. Team Darlton has a way of knocking off a major character or two every time we get to a season finale and trying to kill off DHARMA brat and the Others’ answer to Harry Potter isn’t likely to endear him to either of the major factions on the Island as of 1977. What’s more, Sayid’s story is looking more and more tragic and closer and closer to an end. Literature has never been kind to those who struggle against prophecy, now has it.
It also would explain why 2005-vintage Ben is so very keen to use Sayid as a killer catspaw later in his subjective timeline, but tragically earlier in Sayid’s. Time travel, as the man said, is a bitch…and this particular bitch has been spilling her guts to young Ben so that he “always has a plan” by the time he meets the still-clueless 815ers shortly after their crash.
Mephistopheles is not your name. I know what you’re up to just the same. I will listen hard to your tuition. You will see it come to its fruition.
So, much like Richard Alpert knew about John Locke and Eloise Hawking knew about Daniel Faraday for a good half a century, Ben Linus has known about several figures he would “meet” decades later since childhood.
Suddenly, the “her” to whom Juliet bears the striking reseblance commented upon by Harper Stanhope in “The Other Woman” might not be Annie or Ben’s mother after all, but rather Juliet herself. Suddenly, the selection of Jack, Kate, Hurley, and Sawyer as the group to be rounded up by Michael for the Others in trade for Walt in “Three Minutes” makes a lot more sense.
And over the rest of Season 5, we’re only going to see more and more examples of foreknowledge being given to Ben and to any other DI Purge-survivors who later become Others. I’m totally on board with the theory that elderly Other Amelia is Amy 30 years later now that we know her son—quite possible the last human actually conceived and born on the Island—would grow up to be none other than Ethan Rom.
And by the way, is it possible that the story of the intervention of a Juliet mysteriously (to Amy) wise in the ways of obstetrics and appearing in the nick of time would inspire young Ethan to take up medicine? He was the Others’ surgeon before Charlie shot him, don’t forget.
Watch out for Christian…he’s a dick!
Exhibit number 42 that the Island isn’t very nice: whooshing all the rest of the Oceanic 5 back to 1977 while leaving Sun, the one person with an actual spouse among those living in the past, stuck in the present and then telling her she had “a bit of a journey” ahead of her. And why? No doubt she’s got “work to do.”
I mean, I get that the stakes are high in this game. “God help us all,” as Ms. Hawking, among others, is so very fond of telling us. But still…to tantalize poor Sun and Jin like that? What’s more, separating them both from Ji Yeon. That’s just mean.
And that kind of cruelty still looks rather petty when stacked up against the Island’s rather impressive body count…the soldiers back in 1954, the vast majority of the DHARMA Initiative, all the 815 casualties to date, Charlotte, Danielle & Alex, the French science team, Karl, who knows how many Others, the real Henry Gale, the entire crew of the freighter Kahana, one can only assume the crew of the Black Rock, and John Locke (well, sorta) that we know of.
There have been actual wars worthy of the name—and even Arnold Schwartzenegger movies—with lower casualty numbers. If the stakes are anything less than the very fate of the world, I kinda hope that Jughead the bomb blows the hell out of the Island in the series finale…but only after all the remaining characters have cleared off of it.
In further Christian Shephard news, some eagle-eyed viewers managed to catch a glimpse of what looked like a blonde-haired woman crouching behind some furniture during the conversation beween Christian, Sun, and Frank. Could it be Claire? Or is it just a careless Production Assistant lucky enough to be nowhere near Christian Bale while getting into a camera’s sight line? Odds are we won’t find out anytime soon, given that Emilie de Ravin is unlikely to be seen before Season 6. But then, we’re going to need plenty of questions to occupy us for the final season, yeah?
Sonya’s “Aww, Yeah!” Moments of “Namaste”:
1. Sawyer laying the verbal smack down on Jack and proving he’s a better leader than the dithering Doc ever was.
2. Sawyer sticking Jack with Work Man duty. *snerk*
3. Ben snarking, “And how’d that work out for everyone?” at Frank after he’d reminded Sun that a whole team of commandos was sent after Ben.
4. Sun belting Ben with an oar. He had it coming for withholding the info that Jin was in 1977, which we know he knew!
5. Just seeing Sayid (reasonably) safe and sound after the Ajira crash. I’m such a mark for Sayid.
6. Seeing some good, old-fashioned Monster-based deforestation to greet the newcomers.
7. Hurley asking Sawyer why he wasn’t going to tell the DI about the impending Purge.
8. Sawyer’s reply that he wasn’t there to “play Nostradamus to these people.”
PS: Note to Darlton: More Desmond please! We’ve had too many episodes without hide or hair of our favorite Scot. And ditto Locke. You can’t resurrect a guy and leave us hanging regarding him for so long. It’s just not cricket! OK…I feel better for having vented.
(Author’s Note: OK, back to a regular schedule after this last late recap. I was in San Diego and Baja helping my brother get married with many attendant festivities starting last Wednesday night. Note to self, there’s a reason they call it “te-kill-ya.”)
Well…there you have it. The Passion of the Locke, as others have already been perceptive enough to call it. And did I call it? Of course I called it! But then, did anyone really not believe that Locke the Miracle Man’s™ story arc wasn’t leading him inexorably toward that ne plus ultra of miracles (and ultimate validation of his importance in the scheme of things), resurrection? Anyone? Bueller…?
Don’t worry, I wouldn’t own up to it either in your shoes after seeing the proof.
But before he could rise again, Locke needed to suffer the death of ego courtesy of his travels in the underworld, by which I mean the outside world. Shall we? Hang on…
I’ve heard of you. I heard you were dead!
• New guy Caesar is shifty and not to be trusted, possibly has Island knowledge, and is almost certainly a catspaw of Widmore.
• At some point, the DHARMA Initiative got its grubby little mitts on Faraday’s journal in order to make that copy.
• Frank Lapidus managed to land Ajira 316 reasonably safely on Hydra Island, leaving most if not all of the passengers alive. Can that man fly under adverse conditions or what?
• John Locke is back from the dead…and looking more than a little reminiscent of Obi-Wan Kenobi during the dramatic de-hooding as he introduces himself to the Ajira 316 survivors. Unfortunately for Locke, he doesn’t seem to have come back with any more knowledge than he had when he died.
However, seeing as I’m going to be spending the bulk of my time in this piece talking ’bout my main man, Locke, how’s about we start with Items 2 and 3 on that list, as they actually tell us something new and interesting and not immediately related to Locke’s strange journey?
What they tell us in no uncertain terms is that the knowledge of future events specifically included foreknowledge of the crash of Ajira 316, just as I theorized in my recap of “316.” Otherwise, why would Juliet and the Others have been clearing a runway there back in Season 3, hmm?
I told you Ms. Hawking was simply using the rather impressive and arcane environs of the Lamp Post as a set for her play of having spent a great deal of effort finding out about where the Island would be and which plane would be the most likely to get them through their “window.” She already knew exactly which plane would be crashing there on that particular day, as did whoever gave the order to build that runway, either Ben or Richard. Of course, as with the very best lies, hers contained a kernel of truth. I’m quite sure that the Lamp Post was used for exactly the purpose she says it was and could, in fact, still do that job if required. Hell, she may very well have still been crunching the numbers to verify what she already knew, but the fact remains…she already knew it.
Furthermore, if DHARMA had Daniel’s papers and journal, to say nothing of presumably having a period of access to Daniel himself, then it’s almost certain that a pretty extensive info-download occurred. This past year’s Comicon teaser video was a testament to that fact.
So, the gears of determinism keep grinding away to get us to the point at which things will finally have an unsure outcome. Really puts Abaddon’s remark about “getting people where they need to go” into perspective, doesn’t it.
Everybody’s coming, leave your body at the door. Leave your body and soul at the door.
Now, on to the Stations of the Locke. I’m not going to try to draw one-to-one correspondences here. I’ll leave that to the more fanatically detail-oriented among the Lost fandom. But the Passion imagery was simply too obvious to ignore, right down to Locke’s “why hast thou forsaken me?”-like lament to Jack (in the note) and Ben (in person).
The betrayal, the stumbles, the falls, the scourging, the sharing of the burden, the final death…it was all there, with Ben more than anyone playing Judas Iscariot and Widmore, despite protestations to the contrary, doing his best impression of Pontius Pilate.
Let’s start with Widmore. As is ever the case with paternal figures in Locke’s life (Cooper, Christian), he seems to be leading Locke down the primrose path by feeding Locke’s need to feel special and important. He makes sure there’s going to be medical attention available to Locke when he appears at “the exit” from the Island (a place known at the very least to himself, an unfortunate polar bear, and Ben), indicating that he knew someone would be there even if he didn’t know the precisely time. He expresses concern and support, gives him a new identity and resources, and sends him off with Lost’s answer to Charon, Abaddon.
But all of Abaddon’s actions in his role as Locke’s sherpa through Hades seemed to be intended to cause Locke very calculated distress. He brandishes that most hated symbol of impotence at Locke—the wheelchair. A crutch would have done every bit as well without being nearly so demeaning. He digs at Locke with every failed or passed-on attempt to persuade someone to return, adding insult to the injury inflicted by four of the O6 and by his struggle with the prospect of dragging Walt back into the fray. He plants the seed of taking Locke to see someone “who’d be glad to see [him],” likely knowing full well there would only be one person who matched that description, and she’s either dead or else has one very premeditated staged grave.
Clearly, where Locke “needed to go” was right into the pit of despair. Somehow, Widmore knew that it would be Locke’s failed attempts plus his suicide that finally drives the O6 into the vortex of events leading them to the Time Witch, then back onto another airplane known to be making an unscheduled stop on Mystery Frickin’ Island.
But then Ben seems to save Locke from Abaddon. Out of nowhere, he guns Widmore’s lieutenant down and, after losing Locke in the car chase and crash, tracks him down to whatever skeevy flophouse Locke was using for his last little leap. He gives a masterclass on improvised manipulation and then…strangles the man he just talked down?
Of course he does. He got the piece of information that he wanted out of Locke: that Ms. Hawking knew how to get the O6 (accompanied by Ben, of course) to the Island. He couldn’t have gotten that if Locke had killed himself first. I think that this information was all Ben ever wanted out of Locke, and that he always intended to kill Locke once he had it. Like Widmore, he knew that Locke had to be a corpse on Ajira 316.
But the big question now is whether either Ben or Widmore—or even Hawking, for that matter—knew that Locke would be resurrected once back on the Island.
What did he say to make you such a believer?
The Island, on the other hand, knew. It also planted, though zombie-Christian, the seed that germinated into Locke delivering the correct message to the correct O6-er to start the dominoes falling. This culminated in most of the off-Island Lostaways (even Frank…yay, Frank!) getting on their appointed flight to land on their appointed runway and find their appointed Island Messiah™.
Given Christian’s (and therefore presumably the Island’s) distaste for Ben, it also looks like Ben’s got some appointed comeuppance headed his way. If Ben was morose over the fact that Locke had been shielded against death from Ben’s bullet at the mass grave through the trifling expedience of having his kidney on that side conned out of him several years prior, just imagine how not-so-gentle Ben is going to respond to Locke getting up again after being dead for what I can only imagine was about three days.
So, our Locke has a destiny and is important. Important enough for the Island to have gone above and beyond merely “out of its way” to ensure that he’s where he needs to be when he needs to be there. Not premature birth in the ’50s, disability, or even death itself is being allowed to stand in Locke’s way, despite his moments of weakness and failure. Mark my words…somehow, some way, Locke will be the one who ends up either winning the “game” of the show or making the choice that decides all the temporal shenanigans. Either way, he’ll end up showing up both Ben and Widmore in so doing.
By the way, was it just me or was it not incredibly satisfying to see the Jackface (pictured right) issued by Matt Fox upon hearing the news that zombie-Dad passed along a wee greeting by way of that nice Mr. Locke? Yeah, I thought so, too!
And when the Zetas fill the skies, will our leaders tell us why?
Taller Non-Ghost Waaalt had himself a vision of Locke in a suit on the Island surrounded by people who wanted to hurt him. Locke and the rest of the passengers of Ajira 316 land pretty miraculously intact on Hydra Island. Time-skipping Sawyer, Juliet, Locke, et al find the same outrigger canoes we saw on Hydra Island over at an ominously empty and disshevled Beach Camp. Subsequent unknown canoers take potshots at our time-skippers.
I don’t know about all of you, but I have to say I’m not terribly sanguine about the prospect of watching whatever Bad Dudes and Dudettes someone (probably Widmore) placed on Ajira 316 do nasty things to our beloved left-behind Lostaways and their camp. Though, I am kinda looking forward to seeing just who it was that Juliet was able to hit with that Olympic-caliber riflery of hers. Does that make me a bad person?
So it seems that poor John Locke is still beset on all sides and really does have “a lot of work to do,” even if he’s going to end up triumphant. But, if Team Darlton is listening, can you guys just lay off the poor man’s legs for the rest of the series? Seriously, guys…Joe Namath didn’t have this many problems, and his knees were reputed in New York to be “the best-known joints in town,” m’kay? Thanks.
Now bring on “LaFleur!”
(Author’s Note: Please pardon your humble author’s tardiness as she fell into a bit of a time-loop herself in trying to make her thoughts about “This Place is Death” semi-coherent in the face of all that’s come before.)
Well, that was a cheery name for a cheery episode, wasn’t it? Not that it wasn’t an adrenaline-pumping little slice of awesome like the rest of Season 5 to date, but wow was it ever dark. Poor Daniel, poor Charlotte, poor Locke, poor Jin, poor Danielle, poor Montand, poor “infected” (or is it re-programmed?) French Science Team…and things aren’t exactly looking peachy for the O6ers, Ben, or Des either.
If ever there was an episode showing us just how cruel a mistress the gears of time can be as they crush everyone unfortunate enough to fall into the machinery, this was it.
OK, let’s do this thing…
A live body and a dead body contain the same number of particles. Structurally, there’s no discernible difference. Life and death are unquantifiable abstracts. Why should I be concerned?
In my recap of last season’s finale, I went for broke on a Watchmen metaphor. And, now that the reference is all timely what with the big-screen adaptation of that most excellent of all graphic novels about to hit a megaplex near you, I find it timely (*rimshot*) that we get yet another reminder of just how hard the Island is on its toys. Much like Dr. Manhattan in the quote above, the Island seems indifferent to suffering and death of the humans ensnared in its causal web.
(Spoiler warning! If you haven’t read Watchmen and don’t want to be spoiled, you might want to click away now…)
It’s been noted before that Watchmen has a very strong parallel with Lost in that it also features a secret Island full of supremely talented individuals being used in the service of a daring plan for the greater global good, and involving science so advanced as to be indistinguishable from magic, who are thanked for their efforts with an untimely end (on an exploding ship, no less!). And that, furthermore, said plan involved the death of millions and the traumatizing of the entire human population of the planet in order to save us all from otherwise-inevitable extinction and give us World Peace™…tough love, to say the least.
But more and more I also see Dr. Manhattan as an analog to the Island itself—capable of seeing past, present, and future simultaneously and of manifesting anything according to their desires. Dr. M does it through direct manipulation of matter, while the Island seems to do it by mapping causality backwards far enough and tweaking things to ensure that something or someone is in a certain place at a certain time (and that, kids, is “The Magic Box“).
Both could save or destroy their respective worlds. And, much like Dr. Manhattan needed to be persuaded first by Silk Spectre to involve himself and prevent humanity’s “mutually-assured destruction” by nuclear holocaust (*cough*“Jughead“*coughcough*), and then by Ozymandias to keep the secret of his deception in the service of the greater good to humanity, so too does the Island need persuading.
But I’m not convinced that it’s gotten that yet from Ben, Alpert, Widmore, Locke, or anyone else. Someone needs to be the conscience that keeps the Island’s own agency in check. Who’s going to be our Silk Spectre?
But the Island has also shown the spoiled-prodigy arrogance of Watchmen’s resident schemer, Ozymandias, as well. Our much-discussed, four-toed statuary foot even calls to mind the “trunkless legs of stone” of Percy Shelley’s famous sonnet, “Ozymandias,” with its ironically hubristic declaration, “Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair.”
Like Ozymandias, who engages in a merciless beat-down of all the other main characters mainly to show how powerless they are to stop his machinations, the Island and its manifestations have often seemed petty in reminding its catspaws who’s in charge…most notably zombie-Christian. (Zombie-Yemi and zombie-Ana were no great shakes either. “Libby says, ‘hi!’” indeed.) It’s not enough that he makes you do things whether you want to or not without regard for broken bones, hearts, or minds because you “have to,” but he’ll be all snarky to you as he does it.
Ben’s tumor and exile…Locke’s numerous leg-wounds (the nastiest of which by far was this week’s protruding-bone special!), exile, and death…Michael’s denied release, then frigid dismissal…Claire’s separation from Aaron…Jin’s separation from Sun…the French team’s “re-programming”…Charlotte being the victim of a Cassandra-like prophecy of doom…the numerous worst-possible-moment time-skips preventing important questions from being answered. The list goes on and on.
It’s enough to make you bang on a hatch in the middle of the night screaming your frustration at cruel fate.
(Aside: While it would probably be futile to attempt to draw direct correspondences between the ensembles of Lost and Watchmen characters for a variety of reasons, one does seem very clear: that of Jack to Dan Dreiberg, aka Nite Owl II. Like Dreiberg, Jack was all too willing to lay down his burden of heroism, only to find himself impotent and adrift in “normal life” before being reluctantly called back into action. And no, that doesn’t make Locke Rorschach! )
(***END OF WATCHMEN SPOILERS***)
“Did it hurt?”
“I felt my back break. What do you think?”
As both fellow DocArzt & Friends recapper Fishbiscuit and EW’s Doc Jensen (among others) have aptly pointed out, descents played a very key role in the proceedings of “This Place is Death.” And the place of the journey into the underworld in the great Western monomyth is pretty well established by now. Locke crashes to the bottom of the well and almost meekly accepts his role as wheel-axle-righter and soon-to-be-corpse. Robert and the rest of the French Science Team chase after Montand (well, most of him anyway). Charlotte falls into the well of her own timeline. Danielle begins her long descent into solitary madness. Ben, Desmond, Jack, and Sun prepare for their own descent into the time-witch’s lair.
And, as always, you do not return from the underworld unchanged…if you return at all. Charlotte didn’t, succumbing at last to a particularly nasty case of Time Travel Sickness™, but I’ll get back to her. Robert and crew seem reprogrammed or replaced by smokey pod-people (providing us with an unexpected answer to the question of the “sickness” which made Danielle gun her team down like rabid dogs, and showing us a new ability of Smokey’s). Danielle becomes the “crazy French chick” we all came to know and love before her brutal slaying by the mercenary team. The off-Island folk will presumably return from their descent ready to cast away the outside world once and for all and return to the Island for the end-game.
Which leaves Locke, the miracle man. Locke, the Island’s answer to the Hero With 1,000 Faces™. But also Locke, the eternal patsy.
Look at the expressions that adorn John Locke’s face as he survives another nasty fall and confronts yet another broken part of himself, then interacts with zombie-Christian. He looks just like a whipped puppy as yet another father-figure uses and abuses him. We also know that Locke will end up giving his life during his particular trek through the underworld, which for Locke would also include his time off-Island. Anything that takes him away from the Island that let him walk again could only be considered a form of purgatory or hell for John Locke.
But, despite that, and despite knowing that certain doom awaits, Locke struggles on one good leg with help denied him by Christian and puts the wheel back on its “axis” (which struck me as odd…shouldn’t it be “axle?”), while yet again being denied an answer by the Island.
And, once we see the clearly-impending story of his time as Jeremy Bentham which culminates in his death, will we have seen the last of gullible, approval-seeking patsy Locke? I think we will. Somehow, some way, our monomythic hero will rise as they all do and win the day, providing his hard-acquired boon to his people (both the Others and the Lostaways) and to the world.
Wheel of morality, turn turn turn! Tell us the lesson we must learn.
But, before we leave Locke’s portion of this episode, let’s look at one very key exchange between Locke and Christian:
CHRISTIAN: You came to see me in the cabin. You asked me how to save the island and I told you you had to move it. I said that you had to move it, John.
LOCKE: But Ben said he knew how to do it! He told me that I had to stay here and lead his people.
CHRISTIAN: Since when did listening to him get you anywhere worth a damn?
This segues us very nicely into Ben, since this dismissal by the Island’s mouthpiece provides a very stark contrast to the Ben of “This Place is Death” who has to pull his Reincarnation Van full of ungrateful brats over to tell them what’s what about how he’s been shielding them from forces far worse than he. (And, really, how cool was that, eh?) Here we see one of Ben’s few truly unguarded moments of sincerity on the show to date, right up there with his rumination on what kind of girl Destiny is and his assertion to Juliet that she’s his. It’s clear that he truly believes he’s “one of the good guys” and that he has, in fact, protected the Oceanic 6 from evil.
Having seen the Island’s callousness on numerous occasions now, it really is enough to make you wonder if perhaps Ben’s assertion of being on the side of the angels might not have some merit. Granted, Locke has been strung along by Ben quite a bit, but the Island’s manipulations of Locke have been, if anything, far crueler. It demanded the sacrifice of Locke’s follower, Boone, only to subsequently ask the ultimate sacrifice of Locke himself and it played “Indian giver” on several occasions with Locke’s legs. All the Island’s gifts seem to come with some rather nasty strings attached.
So here’s a question to bake your noodle: what if the Island has exiled first Widmore, then Ben, and finally Locke to ensure that no one with a strong enough will or talent could challenge its plans, and its plans are decidedly not good for humanity? We know that the DHARMA Initiative was supposed to harness the Island to “save the world,” after all.
Or, conversely, are the plans of both Ben and Widmore perversions of the natural order so grand as to force the Island’s hand to the degree that it has to break quite this many eggs in the making of a light and fluffy global omelet? On the one hand, the Island is part of nature. Well, sorta. On the other, it meddles with natural processes like healing and pregnancy to serve its ends.
Obviously, this is a question whose answer is going to remain unclear right through the end of Season 6.
Suffer the little children to come unto Me, and forbid them not
The action of getting the O6 back to the Island is happening at far too breakneck a pace to allow for wee Ji Yeon to be flown in from Korea. Desmond is at Lady Hawking’s Temporal Oracle without the wife and child in tow. And why do I get the distinct presentiment that Aaron’s going to become similarly inaccessible?
While we’re at it, weren’t children born or conceived on the Island supposed to be somehow special? What about Waaaaaalt’s magical mystery abilities to affect probability and/or causality and project himself into places he’s not?
To me, this raises the broader question of what role in the show’s endgame the outside world will play…will people question the O6′s flimsy story after they suspiciously all disappear together, leaving even their children behind? Will the world find out about this bizarre Island on which no less than the fate of all humanity seems to rest?
And last but least, am I the only one who find’s Sun’s whole vengeance storyline’s apparent end more than a little perfunctory? Just askin’.
Invisible airwaves crackle with life. Bright antennae bristle with the energy. Emotional feedback on a timeless wavelength…bearing a gift beyond price, almost free.
I know I’m not the only one to say this, but count me in among the chorus of voices saying that the voice the French Science Team overheard on their radio rattling off the Numbers was none other than Hurley’s.
If I’m right, this will create the fifth confirmed predestination loop on the show:
1. That the time-skipping Lostaways themselves assured the crash of Oceanic 815 by giving the Others 50 years to plan for it and ensure its occurrence.
2. Locke was the one who first made Alpert interested in Locke, eventually precipitating his arrival on the Island and his seeming ascension to Others leadership.
3. Daniel cemented his own grooming as a temporal troubleshooter by demonstrating to his future mother, Eloise Hawking, that time travel was possible.
4. Charlotte confirms that it was Dan Faraday whose warning to stay away from the Island on pain of death no doubt had the reverse effect, guaranteeing it.
5. It was Hurley’s own voice heard by Leonard Simms and Sam Toomey at their listening station broadcasting the Numbers which found their way to Hurley, allowing him to win the lottery and secure his place on flight 815.
This would also strongly imply that 1) the O6 will get back to the Island, and 2) that they’re going to spend some time with the DHARMA Initiative in the past. I’m also betting that we’ll see at least a few more of these loops before we’re done.
Again, I put it to you that the big question we all need to be asking about time travel is, “from how far into the future have time travelers come back, leaving a warning of their existence?” I’d be willing to bet that at least the Island and Eloise Hawking have knowledge from farther in the future than the O6′s departure on their return trip to the Island.
Came the last night of sadness and it was clear she couldn’t go on. Then the door was open and the wind appeared. The candles blew then disappeared. The curtains flew then he appeared…saying, “don’t be afraid.”
Going back to my initial premise, this has to be one of the crueler examples of the Island’s “ends justify the means” modus operandi. A girl escapes the Island with her mother, spends her whole life making herself someone who could find her way back, actually manages to get back, and then turns out only to be there so that she can, in her dying throes of Time Travel Sickness, tell Locke to look for a half-remembered well from her intentionally-repressed childhood.
That is just plain cold. I know that, if I were bereaved enamorato Daniel Faraday, once I figured out how this particular temporal game had been rigged, I would be doing my damnedest to go from being a temporal troubleshooter to being the most dangerous monkey-wrench the Island has ever seen thrown into its gears.
What’s more, the verification of her DHARMA Initiative upbringing (who else listened to Geronimo Jackson?) has bred a lot of speculation about the identity of her parents. The two most compelling couples I’ve seen bandied about are Ben and long-lost love, Annie, and Horace & Olivia Goodspeed. Both pairings would seem pretty likely to produce a redhead like Charlotte, but I have to kind of give the edge to Ben & Annie here, given Ben’s piercing blue eyes which Charlotte shares.
Given that we know Daniel will go back in time to DHARMA days, I think it’s a fair bet that we’ll actually get an answer to this question. If it is Ben, how horrible would it be for him to lose not one, but two daughters to the draconian game into which he was pulled as a neglected and abused child?
But that’s just how big, bad papa Island rolls. This place, as the lady said, is death.
Jorge Garcia’s extensive palette of acting hues makes Hurley one of the most versatile characters on LOST. Hurley has been comic relief, sympathetic, heroic, and even romantic.
“Lost 412 Pt. 1 – No Place Like Home”
There’s a little white porch – and you wanted it so – Can you let me go down – to the end of the road/ In the black and the white – a technicolorful life – Can I stand by your side – we can make it alright/ Like home.
‘Cause I’m home – There’s a little white porch – and you wanted it so – can you let me go down – to the end of the road/In the black and the white – a technicolorful life – then another arrived – it’s a cowardly lion.
What I want from this world – what I wanna resolve – when I want you to stay – so I want you to wait – I don’t wanna be bold – I don’t wanna be cold – I don’t want grow old – I don’t wanna go HOME.
- Breaking Benjamin “Home”
A – The Oceanic 6 is on a cargo plane (bad mojo) and Jack takes the lead in deciding to stick to the story of how they survived on the island. As they exit the plane, everyone except Sayid, Kate and Aaron has someone waiting for them.
A – Back on the island Jack has Faraday monitor the chopper with the sat-phone Lapidus dropped. He decides that he and Kate will go after the chopper.
Act Out- Faraday knows that the chopper is going to the Orchid and that means that Keamy is enacting the Second Protocol. He tells Charlotte “We have to get off this island, now!”
A – Jack and Kate trek through the jungle while Jack bleeds on the flora. Kate points out how Jack looks a person in the eyes when he lies to them just before Milo, followed by Sawyer and Aaron, stumble across them. Sawyer and Jack conflict over who was right and wrong before Jack assumes responsibility for Sayid and Desmond (not on the chopper). Sawyer joins him in their “rescue” (Wait, you don’t get to die alone).
A – At the press conference the Oceanic 6 tells their story.
- Jack initially lies about landing in the water.
- Hurley takes offense to his “health” and wealth.
- Sun says Jin died in the crash.
- A reporter points out Kate would have been six-months pregnant when the Marshall caught her and took her on the plane.
- Sayid says there are no other survivors.
As they leave the conference Sayid finds Nadia waiting for him. Ah, bittersweet.
Act Out – Sayid arrives back on the island ready to ferry everyone to the freighter when he learns that Jack and Kate have gone after the chopper.
C – Locke, Hurley, and Ben deliver exposition just before finding a 15 year-old supply cache and signaling the Others.
B – Faraday takes over ferrying duties so that Sayid and Kate can go after Jack and Sawyer. Juliet insures that Sun is first on the raft (note: Juliet, Charlotte, Milo, Rose and Bernard seem to be the only ones still on the island when the raft launches).
Act Out – Back home, Sun takes over controlling interest in her father’s company. “Two people are responsible for [Jin's] death. You are one of them.” Sun promises to discuss the future of Paik Industries after she gives birth.
A – Hurley arrives home with his Mr. Cluck’s chicken to find a coconut and whispers waiting for him. He discovers a surprise birthday party (Jesus Christ is not a weapon) with Kate, Aaron, Sayid and Nadia waiting for him. He then learns that his dad restored the Camaro, but the odometer is set to 4815162342!!!!!! Run, mad man, run!
Act Out – Hurley, Ben and Lock deliver some more exposition before discovering that Keamy is already at the orchid.
B – The raft arrives at the ferry and Sun and Jin learn that Michael is on the freighter while Desmond and Hendricks learn that something is transmitting from the freighter.
D – Jack and Sawyer find Frank Lapidus cuffed to the chopper with no Desmond or Sayid. Sawyer tells jack that “Hugo” is with Ben at the Orchid (I guess wanting to rescue Locke would be pointless).
Act Out – Jack leads his father’s wake then learns from a coma-free Mrs. Littleton that Claire was/is his half-sister. Final frame is an OTS shot of Aaron looking at Jack as Jack stares back wide-eyed and teary as HIS NEPHEW! (duh-duh-dun)
ACT FIVE /TAG
B – Michael tells Sun and Jin his story then Desmond directs him to the C-4 in the radio room. We assume the Korean Jin speaks to Sun is, “You know that raft we just came in on? Get back on it.”
A – In a scene reminiscent from Season Two, Kate and Sayid are taken by the Others, but unlike Season Two, this time we’re glad they captured Kate.
C – Ben gives Locke future exposition on what to do in the Orchid before revealing he has plan.
Montage – Sun and Aaron head toward the raft. Jack and Sawyer head toward the Orchid. Kate and Sayid head to wherever the Others are taking them. Locke and Hurley keep their heads down.
In the Teaser and Act One we learn that simply getting off the island is not going to be as easy as Jack wants it to be (oh, this isn’t a Jack-centric episode, but he’s got his stank all over it). We learn on the cargo plane that whatever happens between this episode and the Oceanic 6 getting off the island has left them all in shock, but Jack still takes control by keeping everyone focused on the story they’ll tell.
In Act Two it’s clear that everyone is willing to stick to the lie, necessary or not, except Hurley. The first question (health) he dodges like politician and the second (wealth) he wants nothing to do with. It’s our first glimpse in how the Oceanic 6 might not keep their story.
But it is in Act two, through Sun’s story, we catch are first glimpse that “home” isn’t so sweet, nor will it be and that not everyone is going to stick to the story. Why? While Sun points out that she holds her father responsible for Jin’s death she also points out that she holds one other person responsible. There’s no need to say this to her father unless she wants him (and not just the audience) to know there’s another person. So even though we saw that the story is already unraveling at the conference we get a glimpse into how it’s going to continue to unravel . Notice in Ji Yeon that only Hurely came to see Sun’s baby and in this episode he didn’t lie. Also, Sun gives someone off the island a tiny hint that there is more to the “story.”
Act three ends with what seems to be redundancy, Keamy and his boys are at the Orchid. But what this shows is that there is going to be an unavoidable confrontation that is going to shake our survivors to their core. Is it any wonder why Act Three is all about Hurley? In television Act Three usually is the point where the hero/heroes try a new approach, but end up in the worst state. Hurley tries to strike a balance between being home and giving up the cursed money, but all signs (coconut, whispers, and numbers) point to the fact that it’s impossible (and we know that Charlie’s ghost will eventually show up). In the Act Out Hurley is concerned about what will happen to him if they move the island and he’s still on it. Well, we know he won’t be, but the difference is that Hurley is privy to what Ben and Locke are doing. He actually understands it, therefore once he’s off the island, of the Six, he’s the only one that knows what really happened and why, but it won’t be until Hurley learns to trust himself, in fact, love himself, that he will be able to face that truth and bring everyone together.
In Act Four, everything is on island, no flash-forward, and we get a glimpse as to how matter will be resolved. There’s the raft for Sun and Aaron, and the chopper for Jack, Kate, Hurley and Sayid, we know that this is how they’re going to escape the dangerous situations they are in, but clearly something is going to happen to both Hurley and Sun that will distance them from the other four and lead them to being the ones that lead the return to the island in Season Five.
Is it any wonder why we began the episode with Jack being the ring leader of the falsified story, then we see him doing what Jack takes best, try take responsibility for everyone and control the outcome, but when he runs into Sawyer it’s one of the first times that we see someone point out that Jack is wrong and his only response is, “Well hiding out didn’t seem to work for you guys.” Jack is wrong, but he’s not willing to admit it and we’re seeing the first signs of that.
Now, this episode seems as just a set up for the finale, but that’s only the case in Act Five when we see the montage (that for some reason made me think of Return of the Jedi), and four factions each of our Oceanic 6 are broken down into and we are forced to wonder how they’ll come together to get off the island.
Oh, but wait! This episode still stands on its own legs as a major part of the overall monomyth because we learn how two of our main supporting characters, Hurley and Sun, will be integral to bringing about the overarching conclusion of the show.
The Season Finale will be the pinnacle of “The Reward” (See Part 4 of Journey to Redemption) where are heroes will be living the truth of their new identities and accepting the consequences.
There is the Oceanic Six, a new identity for these five adults that will forever link them together with the island, and there are those who stay behind, but as some characters are arching for the better, others are not. Sayid has his Nadia and we know that things are not going to end well there. Kate, the fugitive, has someone to love, but when she got off the plane she was truly alone. Hurley and Sun, the guy who cares for everyone but himself and the once docile but now independent woman, cannot separate themselves from the people or events on the island.
Jack, well Jack has learned who Aaron is and it’s going to be impossible for him to continue to ignore that being on that island was destiny. When this season ends, as we’ve seen, Jack will be taking responsibility as a leader by living in denial (is this art imitating life…I digress), but in order for him to return to the island the first thing he’s going to have to do is admit he’s wrong and then start to trust those he once led.
“Can I stand by your side, we can make it alright, like home.”
“Lost 410 – Something Nice Back Home”
First the Breakdown, then the analysis, shall we?
A – The show kicks off with Jack being awakened (Jack, I need you to wake up) and going outside his tent to make the peace between his people and the freighties before reiterating his promise to get everyone off the island and then collapsing.
Act Out – In the future we discover that after her trial, Kate, Jack, and Aaron are living together [note: Jack wakes up and finds Kate in the shower)
A - Still in the future, Jack reads "Alice in Wonderland" to Aaron and appears very fatherly.
B - While crossing the island back to the beach, Sawyer and Claire learn that Danielle and Karl are dead when Miles reveals their bodies.
Act Out - On the island, Juliet confirms Jack's need for an appendectomy.
C - Juliet sends Sun and Jin to the staff for medical supplies to perform the surgery . Dan and Charlotte join them.
B - Sawyer takes a "Big Brother" (not the show or Orwellian) role toward Claire and imposes a "restraining order" against Miles.
D - There's a D story? Yes, it's very brief but it's the conversation between Bernard and Rose where they discuss the implications of Jack's need for surgery.
A - On the island Jack wants Kate to hold the mirror for him while he directs his own surgery.
Act Out - Jack visits Hurley and learns that he has been seeing Charlie and that Charlie has a message for Jack: You're not supposed to raise him. Then he also learns that someone will be visiting him very soon.
C - Sun, Jin, Dan, and Charlotte arrive at the Staff and Jin suspects that Charlotte knows Korean. [Note: Daniel goes into the Staff first]
B – Sawyer, Claire and Miles come across Lapidus, who warns them to hide from Mr. Keamy.
A – Jack and Juliet convince Kate to help with the surgery.
Act Out – Jack wakes Kate up to propose to her.
C – Jin confirms his suspicion about Charlotte and makes her promise to get Sun off the island regardless of what happens to him or his friends.
A – (Bernard: Wouldn’t you rather be dreaming about something nice back home?) Juliet begins the surgery Jack’s way, but they have to toss Kate out of the tent and chloroform his butt.
Act Out – Claire wakes up in the middle of the night to find her dead dad holding Aaron.
(This tag is long enough that it is nearly an Act Five)
A – Juliet lets Kate know that Jack loves her while he pretends to be sleeping. In the future Jack and Kate start to fall apart when he learns that Kate is doing a favor for Sawyer.
Act Out – We end on the B-story when Sawyer wakes up to find Claire missing, learns that she left with her dad, and finds Aaron a few yards away. Claire! Claire!
Now, deciphering the intent of this week’s episode isn’t as easy as last week’s when we could just follow the act outs…or is it? Let’s see.
First up, notice the number of times people are being woken up: Jack wakes up to make the peace between his people, then wakes up to find Kate in his shower, Kate wakes up to a proposal, and Claire wakes up to dead daddy holding her baby.
Bernard asks Jack about the chloroform: Wouldn’t you rather be dreaming about something nice back home? Think back to the Alice in Wonderland reference. The line that we’re clearly meant to hear is “I wonder if I’ve been changed in the night? Let me think: was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I’m not the same, the next question is, who in the world am I?”
One of the themes of this episode is what is real and what is a dream? Jack thinks Hurley is crazy because he tells him he sees Charlie, but when Jack starts seeing his father his happy world with Kate begins to unravel. We know where this will eventually lead, but what it truly reveals is Jack’s inability to deal with reality and more importantly his inability to place faith in others based on the reality that surrounds him. Remember, Jack has been seeing his dead father since Season One, but for Hurley to see Charlie is crazy. Not only that, but the guy can’t even let a trained fertility doctor do a simple appendectomy because he doesn’t trust anyone.
That leads us to the second part of this episode – trust. This is played out in the all stories as the need to protect someone. Notice, that in the future we first see Kate in the shower. If that isn’t a vulnerable place then watch Psycho. Jack wants to protect everyone, but he needs Kate to protect him by holding the mirror. Juliet tries to protect Jack from himself. Bernard wants to protect Rose, Jin – Sun, Sawyer – Claire, and Dan -Charlotte. What’s the one thing none of these people are trying to protect? The island! And I believe that is because none of them has learned to trust it like Locke seems to have. The big key to this episode isn’t who is dead and who isn’t, it’s that small D-story, when Rose points out that it can’t be mere coincidence that Jack is ill the day before they are set to leave an island that heals people.
The story fits into the big picture by revealing that until these people unite (for example, Jin needs to care for more than just Sun and his baby), care for one another, and protect the island, then any hope of happiness is just a dream.