Tuesday, March 09, 2010

"Dr. Linus" Instant Reactions!

Brian's One Word Review: Faith.


There was a lot of subtle - but really heavy - religious undertones in this episode. The two main storylines of the episode featured two characters having serious crises of faith. On the one hand, we had Richard Alpert attempting to kill himself after feeling as though he wasted a really, really long lifetime dedicating himself to Jacob, who promised him that there was a "master plan"... only to have Jacob die, without ever letting him in on this plan.


On the other hand, we had Benjamin Linus, who found himself alone on the Island, ready to side with "evil incarnate" (SmokeLocke) because he was the only one who would accept him. Sure, he may have killed Jacob - but he came to the realization that he did so because it was the only way for him to hold onto the only thing that he had left - power and control of the Island - and after sacrificing Alex for the sake of the Island, it was the only way that he could justify that terrible act.


But that's not all.


It also featured Ilana finding a way to forgive Benjamin Linus for killing "the closest thing she ever had to a father", and in the process perhaps saving his soul from the darkness of Anti-Jacob.


Finally, the show continues to test the faith of the audience. I'm not going to lie, the Off-Island Ben storyline was pretty great, pulling heavy on the parallels from his life on the Island and showing that he had learned from his actions - but compared to the mega-awesomeness happening on the Island, every time the action shifted away to the Flash Sideways, I cried a little on the inside. The writers have told us that we have to trust them - we have to have faith in them - that in the end we'll understand why these Flash Sideways are so important. So let's do exactly that.


Keep the faith.


What to discuss?


Benjamin Linus. As I mentioned, there was plenty of heavy parallels between Dr. Linus Off-Island and the Benjamin Linus that we've seen over the past four seasons of Lost. In the Off-Island action, Ben seemed to get a "second chance" at life. He had a positive relationship with his Father (at least better than his On-Island one), he had the chance to sacrifice Alex to gain a position of power - but chose to save her instead, and was a man who was happy to sacrifice his own personal gains for the sake of others. Pretty much the exact opposite of the Benjamin Linus we've come to know and love.


For another week, the Off-Island Flash Sideways felt like a "Second Chance" for our characters to get things in their lives right - but unlike Sayid's story, it felt less like a "Deal with the Devil" that had a cruel twist, and more like Ben maturing to realize the benefits of sacrificing for others over his own personal gain.


Maybe we'll see that the Flash Sideways really do represent "Happily Ever After"... and the seeming "Cruel Twists" that we've seen in some of them are just showing us that life isn't always fair - or sunshine and puppies... but if you get a second chance and learn from your mistakes, you make the best of what's around.


Richard Alpert. Let's contrast all that happy talk with the suicidal Richard Alpert. Ever since SmokeLocke told Alpert it was "finally out of those chains", we theorized that perhaps Alpert came from the Black Rock, and has been living on Island, never aging, ever since. This episode confirmed it. When Jacob touches you, you don't age and can't kill yourself. Could this be the explanation for Michael's inability to commit suicide? Did Jacob visit and touch him at some point in life? For that matter, why couldn't he have touched Walt so that he didn't age so fast, rendering his character useless on the show even though he seemed so important in the first two seasons?


It makes you wonder if Ben was aware of this rule - maybe, just maybe he KNEW that Locke wouldn't be able to commit suicide in his hotel room... but KNEW that Locke had to die in order to complete Jacob's master plan. On the other hand, maybe Jacob KNEW all of this, and positioned Ben to be in a position to murder Locke, and Ben was once again just a pawn in Jacob's master plan.


The good news is, thanks to Jack becoming Bauer-esque and having total faith in the Island and Jacob's power, he was able to somehow convince Alpert that there might be a bigger plan in play, and Jack is a part of it.


The best news is that all of our characters are now back together in two nice groups (aside from potentially Jin and Sawyer). We've got Team Jacob vs. Team SmokeLocke, and everyone is neatly divided between the two sides.


Oh yeah, except for Charles Widmore.


Charles Widmore. Damn me and my episode previews. I'm honestly about one week away from giving them up. The Widmore reveal would have been about a thousand times more powerful / shocking if I didn't spend a few hours thinking and writing about Widmore in the episode preview, trying to figure out how he would fit into the episode. At the episode's end, I realized that he hadn't appeared yet - which either meant they lied in the Guest Star list... or we were due for his shocking appearance.


Enter Widmore on a submarine.


Whoa.


It seems a little impossible at first. Didn't Ben move the Island to prevent Widmore from finding it again? And it took him nearly twenty years to find the Island the first time, but only a few days (or weeks?) to find it a second time? Remember, in December 2007 Widmore is standing outside Desmond's hospital room getting slapped by Eloise Hawking. The Oceanic Six boarded Ajira 316 the next day. They spent 4 days in 1977, followed by the Incident, followed by a few days in "the present" (late 2007 / early 2008?). So over the course of that small of a timeframe, Widmore got a submarine, hired a crew, and headed straight for the Island? I guess he could have used the Lamp Post with the help of Eloise Hawking? Still - a little weird. But I'm keeping the faith!


On the down side, that submarine looked pretty small, given that Widmore was sitting inside of it crammed next to the periscope operator. If Widmore is coming with the calvary to save the day, it doesn't look like he brought many people along for the ride. But let's hold out hope that Desmond is tucked away inside there as well!


The Hydra Station. It sounds like Team SmokeLocke is heading back to the Hydra Station. You know what that means? We're going to revisit the scene with Juliet shooting someone in the back outrigger! Could it be she'll kill a bad guy? A good guy? I don't know yet, but I'm pumped to see us heading back in that direction!


Nikki and Paulo. Loved the Nikki and Paulo reference in this episode. Loved it even more that Miles ended up with their millions of dollars of diamonds, getting his payoff for coming to the Island in the first place. Do you think the writers are so forward thinking that they introduced the Nikki and Paulo storyline all those years ago just to have it payoff in this episode with Miles having an excuse for not helping Ben escape? Nah, me neither.


Ilana. So Jacob isn't her father - but the closest thing she ever had to one, which makes it sound like she's some orphan that Jacob took under his wing and in return became a "bodyguard" for him. I definitely like the idea that she's been protecting the Island through what she has been doing Off-Island, and even working to help carry out Jacob's various Off-Island activities over the years (like touching all the Candidates). She continues to prove that she knows EVERYTHING, even calling out Kwon for being a potential Candidate. Someone sit this girl down and make her talk!


Alex. So somehow Danielle Rousseau ends up in Los Angeles? Yeah, I don't see any way the Flash Sideways can be anything except a "Second Chance" for our Survivors or some type of "Deal with the Devil" scenario. There's just no way that all these variables and characters from all over the world could fall into place so easily. Also - Alex was super hot in this episode. Good work, Jeff Goldblum.


Dharma Initiative. Even though the Island is underwater, apparently Dharma still was there, alive and well - but Ben and his father left before the Island sunk... interesting.


Okay - that's plenty from me. What about you?

71 comments:

noemailformeadows said...

First!

Great freaking episode!!!!!!!!!

Gaaaaaah I don't know where to start, probably about to watch it again real soon. So Whidmore is not on team AJ all along? or maybe there's more to AJ/Jacob being the same person but like a split personality, one sets people up to do good, one sets people up to do bad. See which side they pick. Winner take all. make it take it.

Michael definitely had to have been touched at one point because he def couldn't kill himself.

How about this:

WTF woulda happened if HUGO jumped off the side of that cliff when Dave told him to??????????

Would have been an interesting scene............

Caralyn said...

Everyone is together in two nice groups? What about Kate? Clearly she's in the wrong group, even if she was searching for Claire. :) That's just my opinion, of course.

Dree said...

The most interesting Alpert moment for me was when Jack asked Richard where he had been all this time... Richard answered, "You wouldn't believe me if I told you." (Or something along those lines.) Anyone else think he went off island?

noemailformeadows said...

Just gonna take a stab and say that I think Sayid's choice was made in LAX world to do the same bad things and not be a Good person because either A) "His scale is tipped the wrong way" or B) He joined team Smokelocke in the island war.


Just my Shot in the dark.

Jack seems to have made the right choice by going to his kid's recital and being a good father and making everything honkey freakin dorey cry scene I love you BOY! ====== He's on Team Jacob with Ben and the people who do the right thing.

Only problem with this theory is how LOCKE fits in. And if this theory is correct ---- Kate joins SmokeTeam b/c she is obviously still in deep Sh*t in LAX world.

Also - 1 point for the theory - Claire seems to be more or less in the same boat as she was, granted she has her kid and everything, but it wasn't by any choice, she had a premature baby, and she has no money or way of raising it.

noemailformeadows said...

Oh and also in LAX world Hugo is happy christmas life is a beautiful wetdream ==== TEAM JACOB

noemailformeadows said...

Dogen - Team Jacob (died before the war technically) but still he died for Jacobs cause - LAX life he is with his son - who is alive - at the piano recital.

Theory may hold water for a week or two

noemailformeadows said...

Basically the "choices" in LAX world are:

Jack - go to son's recital and talk to him and be a good father = Makes the right choice = Team Jacob

Sayid - We know the choice he made, and it was the wrong one = Smokey

Kate - it didn't show it in her flashback but she still chose to blow up her house to protect her mom

Claire - chose to give her kid up for adoption

Just throwing ideas out there because I think this episode was meant to show more incite into where LAX world is heading

Hermano said...

I think that on the back of Alex's backpack, in the last "flash-sideways" of the episode, she has a Confederate flag sown onto her bag. There are a few flags on there, but it seems really weird (and vaguely inappropriate) to have that on there.

Sam said...

Maybe the LA X stories are what Jacob called 'progress.' These characters have all become better people, but not perfect.

Jack Elder said...

It seems to me that Richard left the island to tell Charles Widmore how to get there. That would be a big revenge against Jacob, and Jack sure wouldn't believe it!

noemailformeadows said...

Really Hermano... that's what you got out of the episode? a 1/2 second shot of a Confederate Flag? Calling that inappropriate is kinda laughable but whatever not gonna get into that argument on a Lost message board.

Way to contribute

Vidya said...

Is it possible that Richard Alpert went off Island to get Charles Widmore to come to the island to fight Smokelocke?

noemailformeadows said...

Also maybe more of a stretch but Jin/Sun don't seem to have a great LAX life either. They aren't even married and Jin is locked in a Keamy Closet... Sun has a "Choice" too. She can go ahead and get it out there that she speaks english and save Jin from a whole looot of trouble with the airport security and probably even keep him out of getting put in that Closet... But like the 1st season she kept that skeleton in her closet while Jin is getting in fights all the time and handcuffed to a piece of a plane

noemailformeadows said...

I don't think Richard was off getting Whidmore for Jacob. It seemed to me like he was really done with Jacob after he found out Jacob was dead... OOOOOR His whole scene with Jack in the Black Rock was him still being in Cahoots with Jacob and that being kinda the "final test" after the lighthouse to know if Jack figured out he had a purpose.

It could go either way... and the more I think about it - I'm leaning towards the latter.

noemailformeadows said...

and If he is still in Cahoots with Jacob and that was a test for jack, then it's likely he was off getting Whidmore

Kuiosikle said...

noemailformeadows: Ah, but we don't even know if Sun CAN speak English in the flash sideways. I like your theory though, a lot!

Bob said...

I think noemail just typed more here than Brian did in his instant reactions. I find it interesting that they made a point of noting the off island reality did include the Linuses being on the island and with Dharma to feed the "Is this what happens if the jughead was detonated" theories. Also, I think Richard's comment to Jack was about not trying to explain that Locke's image is being used by the smoke monster trying to get people off the island. That is a bit tough to believe if you haven't seen it.

noemailformeadows said...

I know I know bob sorry lots of coffee been studying all night and had to vent real quick. One last thing by buddy asked "what about juliet?" and I think she will be happy in LAX land too with her sister much like Dogan. Since she, like him, died while in service of one of his "deals" per Ben.

I'm done

timcourtois said...

What about FLocke's comment to Ben about him becoming the new protector of the island? Guess FLocke is a liar after all... (He told Sawyer it doesn't need anybody to protect it.)

I don't believe that being touched by Jacob means you don't age. Sawyer & Kate obviously aged after being touched by him. Maybe the "gift" is different for everyone...?

Seems reasonable that Widmore would've known Ajira 316 was going to end up on the island, & tracked its flight-path.

Jeremy Kroening said...

Again, I'm w/ timcourtois! Unflappable attention to detail. Of course "the gift" isn't the same, and Richard never claimed it was.

Isaac said...

Loved the episode and great instant reaction Brian. I felt the same way about the heavy religious undertones of faith, forgiveness & redemption. Very powerful stuff.

And you got to think that Widmore has been working on getting back to the island ever since Ben moved it back in season 4. I don't remember any indication that Widmore all of a sudden felt like trying to find the island again in the last couple of weeks. That man is relentless and determined to find the island at all costs and probably has people working 24/7 to help him get back. And to be honest, I have really don't know what side he is on. I see arguments for both sides but I almost lean more towards team Jacob.

- Braum was on team Jacob and told Miles that Widmore was on the wrong side. (Team AJ)
- Widmore told Locke that if he wasn't back on the island when the war came, the wrong side would win. Locke himself never made it back to the island and that allowed for AJ to begin his plan. (Undetermined because we don't know who wins but it seems like he meant the wrong team to be team AJ - this would put him on team Jacob)
- Widmore was assisting Locke into getting the Oceanic 6 back to the island, which was really what Jacob wanted. (Team Jacob)
* Alpert seemed to always dislike Widmore. (Team AJ). I know its weak but hey, it could be argued.
* Ben's hunger for power and control may have resulted in him sabotaging Widmore, getting him removed as leader of the Others. (Possibly team Jacob if Widmore was innocent all along)
* Jacob told Hurley that he needed him to help someone find the island. Although this was a lie, it seemed like Jacob was planning on them coming to the island. (Team Jacob)

I'm excited to see where they go with this and see what "the plan" is that Widmore mentioned at the end of this episode. And I would bet the house that good ol Desmond in on that sub!

Renee' said...

Loved it!
Never thought I could love Ben...!

Did you notice Ben "gassing" his father with oxygen this time rather than the poison?!

robpatt said...

WOW!
What an episode. I agree with your comments about the spoilers, seeing the black rock i got excited because the cain/slave theory just got proven correct.

A few things pointed out. In the Lost for Dummies rerun we found out that killing someone apparently tips your scale towards evil (dogen scene with sayid). That explains why everyone asks everyone else to kill people. Also learned that all the "strange" appearances of past people of our survivors was the smoke monster already starting to manipulate.

As for this episode:
I think Frank Lapidus is going to prove important because they went out of their way to let us know he was suppose to be the pilot that died in the first episode ever. Also interesting that if Jacob touches you you can't kill yourself. That is why the dynamite didn't go off... Jack would have killed himself. We also know that Jacob has "touched" Locke, Sayid, Hurley, Kate, Sawyer, Jack, Know (jin&sun), Dogen, Richard, and based on putting the facts together probably Michael.

Im with Noemail that the parrallel universe is becoming increasingly obvious a parallel for what is now happening on the island. It is interesting to hear Ben with his Dad talk about the Dharma, but they were guessing if they would have stayed... that would not happen if it was the site of a nuclear explosion... people don't talk that way about places that would have been death.

As for widmore, im tired of speculating about him, i will just watch next week. Im just stoked to see the awesomeness of the Team Jacob. You have Illana the knoweverything/bodyguard, renewed candidate Jack, pilot lapedius, eternal Richard (who knows a lot of history), Ben who knows the island and seems to be a new man, Sun, Hurley (who sees Jacob), Miles (who calls up dead...kinda). That is 3 candidates, 3 people who know a lot (illana, Richard, ben), and peole who are either expendable or will prove their value in Miles and Frank.

go lost. I will remain faithful.

robpatt said...

another parallel, you have jin in theory prisoner for evil people on both sides of reality, or whatever we are calling it.

The big parallel in Jacks episode a few weeks back was he told his son he was good enough and Jacob showed jack through the light house that he "had what it takes" and was wanted/valued on the island.


We also got the answer to my question about where the action will take place. Apparently they want to revist every old location, but it will be at the hydra and the beach.

p.s. didn't it use to take them days to get to different parts of the island? Apparently the temple was a couple of hours from the beach, as was the black rock. :-)

Hobbes said...

Brian said - "We're going to revisit the scene with Juliet shooting someone in the back outrigger! Could it be she'll kill a bad guy? A good guy?"


Come on admit it B, you know who gets shot? Mr Irony, that's who. But wouldn't SmokeLocke be able to heal any of his own side who get wounded?

nomail: that's funny I was thinking about Hugo vs Dave, how with Hugo's unknown importance at the time he almost jumped. And that Dave must have been Smokey trying to actually kill Hugo or manipulate Hugo to death. And assuming Jacob had not yet "touched" Hugo, he would have died. But b/c of Libby, it was a healing experience for Hurley.

nomail: also in the sideways flashes, Claire is mentioned in Christian's will. So financially she might possibly be set (along with keeping her baby).

jack said...

Isaac -- remember....Widmore sent the freighter to the Island to capture Ben and kill all others. Is there any argument as to how that act was in Jacob's best interest? (ie; Keemy capturing Ben, as planned, would have prevented him from eventually killing Jacob?).

Also....small matter but does anybody think Libby's motives may be revealed or will this just be dropped?

Brendan said...

Great great episode, as Ben ones usually are. And finally some hints as to the meaning of the flash sideways' I'm beginning to think that they somehow represent a true parallel universe, as in something which is happening concurrently with the Island action. Teacher Ben forgoes his ambitions to power in order to help Alex, realizing it is the right thing to do. Meanwhile, Island Ben is having the very same realization, and turning to the good side, albeit too late for poor Alex. But the key thing is Ben's insight into his own character and the choice he makes, which is the same in both storyline.

Very excited to see how Widmore figures in. It was after all, his people who killed Alex in cold blood.

falcon said...

Some very nice shout-outs to the hardcore fans by the writers, including the oxygen tank and Nikki/Paolo. I found Richard's "you wouldn't believe where I've been" statement (or something along those lines) a bit puzzling - given everything Jack and Hurley have seen on and off the island, is there really anything that they wouldn't believe? And can someone remind me who the six surviving candidates are? Jack, Hurley, one or both Kwons, Sawyer, ?, ? Surely not Sayid or Claire since they have been "claimed" and presumably the (almost) all-knowing Ilana knows that already?

Sam said...

did someone review all the characters that have attempted to kill themselves?

Michael with the gun - nope.
Jack on the bridge - sorry.
Hurley with Dave (kind of suicide) - no sir.
Locke and the hanging - nice try.
Charlie with the heroin - not quite.

Sayid? Sawyer? I don't remember. Anyone else?

Sayid couldn't take the poison pill himself, but never tried.

smacky said...

So, based on how Miles explained his powers, and the fact that he knew the diamonds were buried there... that mean's Nikki's last thought was "What the hell is Sawyer doing throwing the diamonds in the grave?"

Good riddance to those two (again).

Nice pick-up about Ben "gassing" his father, but with oxygen this time!

Question: So why did Smokey kill Mr. Eko? Was he seen as a threat? He wasn't a "candidate."

James said...

Killer episode. Classic lost story telling. Comedy, drama, answers to questions without actually coming out and saying them directly. There was redemption, faith and the classic “leave you hanging” with Charles in Charge at the end. Outside a season finale, I would rank this episode in my top ten of all time, easy. Alex was smoking. Loved to see Richard hook-up with Jack and Hurley (Very dark and cool Richard/Jack moment). Great introduction with Jack, Richard and Hurley walking around the corner to join their new team. I have a friend who is pretty smart with lost theories claiming the following: Jack is NEW Jacob. Hurley, Sawyer and Sayid will die. Frank to be the NEW Richard. Jin and Sun make it off the island. Flock stays Flock and remains trapped on island. He called this prior to last night’s episode and it sure is looking like Jack is going to step into that role. But Lost likes to make us think one thing and go somewhere else. Tasty story telling at its finest.

Dave Harty said...

Any significance to LA X Locke encouraging Dr. Linus to go after the principal? Is he trying to control Ben in that world and Ben made another choice?

Steve said...

Of course Dharma was still there.. assuming that the H-bomb went off.. anything pre 'incident' still happened.

Which points out a MAJOR plot hole.

Where was Ben when Jughead at the time of the incident? I can't remember if he went with the others after Alpert and the temple, or whether he went home. Regardless, Ben would have had his 'other' experience in the temple in the sidways.


I have to assime that the sideways is a result of Jughead or what was the point?

noemailformeadows said...

I also like the Throwback "Walk from out behind those beach shrubs and big hugs and big music" scene...

It happened multiple times in seasons 2-3:

Jin, Bernard, back of plane come out from behind the shrubs - big music, lots of big hugs

Kate, Sawyer come out from behind the shrubs after escaping the Hydra station - big music, lots of big hugs

Jack, Kate, Sayid, Juliet come out from behind the shrubs after the Others abandoned Dharmaville - Big music, lots of big hugs, no hugs for Juliet - "What's she doin here!"

LOST loves the "happy reunion" scene. They also love "giving birth" scenes... at least 5-6 birth scenes throughout the show's history... claire, sun, mrs linus, ethan, at least 1 more i'm forgetting

ryan x said...

Maybe this has been commented on and I missed it... but has anyone else noticed the parallels between off-island and on-island stories?

Jack is a man of science, yet has to have faith in himself that he is a good father. Leap to on-island where he now becomes a man of faith when it comes to what the island has in store for him.

Kate is a fugitive who seems primarily concerned with her self-preservation until she has a change of heart and helps Claire, potentially putting herself in harm's way. back to on-island, where she chooses to jeopardize her fresh start and happy life with Aaron to go BACK to the island and rescue Claire to reunite her with Aaron (in which Kate could die in the process).

Off-island Sayid tries to shake the past identity of him being a torturer and killer, only to realize that it will always be in him. On-island Sayid fared the same way in his final encounter with Dogen and the people of the temple.

Locke was a sad, scared man with nothing left in his disappointing life off-island. Even in the end, with his soon to be wife by his side, he wasn't satisfied and was empty, even a little dead inside. On-island... well, he is dead inside AND out.

Ben chooses someone over himself off-island, deciding that even though he could have it all and make a difference, it would be at the cost of someone's "life" (Alex felt that Yale was her life). On-island Ben finds himself at a crossroads, finally getting all the power he wanted from the beginning, only to turn his back on it for something more... belonging and a chance at righting the wrongs of his past.

noemailformeadows said...

Ryan X - she didn't choose to leave her happy life with Aaron off-island. Linus was having Aaron taken away from her. She really didn't have a choice to give him up, unless she wanted to be on the run again, which is harder to do with a kid. Can't homeschool while running from the popo's

Steve said...

Brian, you spoiled nothing,

We knew widmore was there because of the guest list. Brian guessed that he would appear in the flash/sideways.
No one predicted the submarine, I was completely surprise.. but honestly, we all knew who was on it right?
We knew someone was coming to the island, and we knew that we hadn't heard from Widmore, and he's a guest star.

I predicted in comments that Ben would be scheduled to die by Illana for kiling Jacon and rescued by smokey. It was a lucky guess and I was quite surprised(and happy) that he chose to come back to team Jacob.

Awesome episode, but as I said before, I don't get the Ben sideways assuming that he was with the others when Jughead exploded.
I would think that the two realities diverged at that time.

noemailformeadows said...

Personally I was waiting for Ben's Dad to say "You know Ben, back on that Island I could throw a football over them mountains".... That actor will always be Uncle Rico from Napoleon Dynamite in my eyes

Scott said...

I apologize if this has been addressed, but question. If burying the dead is in fact a way to keep smokeLocke from claiming the dead, why didn't the temple others bury Sayid after the fountain failed to revive him? Didn't we learn recently that he was out/dead for two hours??

Hole in the story, or I'm missing something...

P.S. I know I should have asked this last week.

ryan x said...

noemailformeadows: While I agree with you on the reason for her being at the marina, this was not her motivation to come to the island, but merely the push towards consideration to go. She stated just an episode ago why she came back, and it was to reunite Claire with Aaron.

noemailformeadows said...

Yea I gotcha Ryan. The only point I was really getting at is that she didn't have the choice to start over fresh and happy with Aaron b/c that plan got shot to doodoo when the lawyers showed up with the intention to take him away. She could have obviously chose to give Aaron away and stay in the real world and actually have her own kid and be happy and filthy rich...

Hobnail_Boot said...

Loved the episode, with one major caveat: I want to care about Ilana but I just don't.

It's obvious that she's a major character in the overall story arc of Lost, but the writers haven't spent any time developing her character, and thus I find myself wishing she'd stop wasting time that could be spent focused elsewhere.

falcon said...

Hobnail - My wife had very similar comments last night about Ilana - along the lines of "why should I care about someone whose only role thus far is to stand around with a gun, grimacing, and being somewhat of a know it all"?

Nick said...

The thing about Michael that bothers me... Christian appeared to him to tell him it was his time to die. Christian, who we all assumed was the MIB-affiliate?

Meg said...

So, it seems like as things happen to characters in the Flash-Sideways, they change in the present on the island. Almost as if when they work things out it the alternate reality, it affects them in this reality too. This episode is a great example of that. There seems to be a change in Ben after he chooses to put Alex first in his alternate reality. He now is willing to give up the power and control that he craves.

Speaking of faith - this episode is the first time when Jack, of all people, exercises the most faith. In previous seasons he has been the one lacking faith, but in this episode he obvious has faith in Jacob, the island, and Jacob's plan. That scene in the Black Rock with Richard was awesome.

Oh, and about Widmore - don't we know that time on the island is different than time in the real world? So who knows how long Widmore has been looking for the island.

And any chance that Richard isn't really human? Like how SmokeLocke is the black smoke in human form? Maybe Richard is some other kind of being, protecting the island or something like that, and then he turns into Richard to communicate with people. He does seem to appear out of nowhere in the jungle all the time - like SmokeLocke.

noemailformeadows said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
noemailformeadows said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
robpatt said...

i also got a spoiler...
you will die alone.

sorry, i had to, triumph was needed.

As much as the Luke 4:23 verse could apply, i think any imagery beyond psalm 23 of the Lord Being our Sheppard i think would be a stretch. Lost loves to use imagery to exemplify what they are talking about although it isn't falling into any specific religous system exclusively.

Isaac said...

noemailformeadows, I believe Brian likes to keep this a no spoiler blog so you may want to delete your last several comments.

Ms. NoExcuses said...

I think that Jack for sure is the NEW Jacob, but I think Hurley is the new Richard and someone is going to kill Richard so he can finally be at peace. There just hasn't been enough development with Frank to make him that important...I think. You never know. Though, they did make it clear he was supposed to be on the island - Ben even said it.

I am also with the, "I don't give 2 craps about Ilana," school of thought. She is a gun toting know it all right now and I want her to spill it!

Someone mentioned that the choices being made off-island seem to shape the on island choices. Can we assume that because the scene with Ben helping Alex in LAX world occurred BEFORE the Ben making the right choice with Ilana scene, that - time wise- it happened first? I am not so sure that we can.

I think that the H-bomb created this simultaneous parallel universe and the characters are making the same right or wrong choices in both worlds at the same time. Juliette said, "It worked," before she died. I think she was right, only not in the way we had hoped or thought possible.

The only issue with this is, what happens if they get off the island now? They can't go back to LAX - there would be 2 of each of them there at once - WOAH - no.

This makes me wonder if everyone left is either going to die on the island, or stay there making good or bad choices while their bizzarro world selves in LAX go on as well. But, I might be really going out on a limb here.

I just want there to be a rational explanation for all the weird stuff. Like, how the hell are they gonna explain the smoke-monster? I want this to be less sci-fi I guess so it can just make sense!

Please let Desmond be on the submarine with Whidmore!! If he is, then I think Whidmore is going to be on team Jacob and help eliminate the darker elements on the island so Jack can protect it. It seems Whidmore has been all about protecting the island all along. And, before, Ben seemed to be a threat to the island because he was a threat to the Oceanic crew. If Whidmore comes in with Demond to save the day, THEN, maybe, the Oceanic 6 can live there happily and their LAX bizzarro-selves can live and die in peace.

Whoever made the Napolean Dynamite reference about Ben's dad - TOTALLY!

Ugh, I can't wait for next week.

Ms. NoExcuses said...

Oh, and I have been re-watching from season 1 so I can go through and trace back any hints I might have missed.

There was a scene in the Pilot episode with Locke on the beach playing backgammon. Walt asks him to explain, and Locke holds up 2 pieces saying, "There's a light one and a dark one" (or piece or team he may have said).

Either way, we see a nice close up shot of Locke, holding up a white thing and a black thing, just like the rocks on the scales in the caves and just like the rocks that Adam & Eve had.

This really makes me wonder if the writers had this planned specifically all along.

Or, were they working along and think, "Ooh! Remember those scenes from season 1? Let's bring those back in. Locke was the ones who held the light and dark things in season 1, so let's use him as smokey."

It may be a little of both, but either way, I have got to give them credit.

Brian said...

It's true. There are very few rules on the ol' Blog, but they are strictly enforced.

1. NO SPOILERS. Of any kind. Some people even freak out when others discuss the commercials for the upcoming week's episode... which is why I don't really reference them.

2. NO "THEORIES" BASED ON SPOILERS. Yeah, it's cute to read spoilers, then post a "theory" which magically turns out to be 100% correct, and then perhaps post afterwards "I totally called it!"

If you read spoilers, please don't post your theories here, since they will undoubtedly be influenced by reading the spoilers.

That's it. Anything else goes.

Thanks for playing along!

Becky said...

Maybe Richard disappeared to go tell Locke that he had to die
to save the Island (like the flashes)?

jack said...

May have been posted above and by Brian but seems clear that Richard, out of deep feeling of betrayl, went off Island to inform Widmore where the Island is located...thus his comment to Jack "...you wouldn't believe me if I told you" in reply to Jack asking where Richard's been.

Brendan said...

I also feel like Richard probably told Widmore how to get there - not sure about him leaving the Island though... doesn't seem like there'd be enough time to leave and come back.

But this makes Widmore's arrival interesting. When Richard reappears he's completely disillusioned, so it would seem that helping Widmore would be an act of spite against Jacob, meaning Widmore is actually a bad guy. But I have a feeling Widmore will somehow be reconciled with the pro-Jacob forces (and Ben) in the greater interest of the Island.

What I'm most excited about is that now Team Jacob has Ben, Richard, Ilana, and potentially Widmore - all of whom know a ton about the Island. That means some serious answers to the mythology are on the way!

I had a renewal of faith in the Lost writers after this episode. They took their time to set up a scenario where we will get answers without it seeming forced.

Matt said...

So, if a candidate can't kill him(or her)self, why did Dogen freak out when Jack took the poison? Did he just not know about the rule? Or was Dogen giving him the Heimlich the manner in which he was saved from the poison?

Rachel said...

Jack didn't know it was poison. Which means he could have died. Dogen told him after he tried to take it.

Dave Harty said...

I rewatched the episode last night and I thought that LA X Ben's history lesson and converstion with LA X Locke were very revealing.

Ben (to class): Elba, on this island, everything changed [for Napoleon]. Exile wasn't the worst of his fate. What was truly devistating to him was the loss of his power... Without any power, he might just as well have been dead.

Locke (to Ben): Sounds like you care about this place. And if the man in charge doesn't, maybe it's time for a change.

Interesting combination. Locke promotes the desire for power and Ben, through his lesson, warns of the dangers of power.


On a much lighter note, was that Ben/Illana chase scene about the lamest chase scene ever? For as good an actor as Michael Emerson is, he can't run to save his life, and then she drops her gun before he even has his pointed at her?

jack said...

not difficult to draw parallels from Napoleon and his exile to Elba with Ben Linus and his potential fate on this last episode.

Winkyboy said...

I had a little bit of a problem with the "principal / Alex" storyline, which makes me ask, "What were the writers thinking?"

First, there was NO bargaining power that the principal had. Compared to a college recommendation, an illicit affair by a married man and administer of children is far more heavy. And how did the principal know that Linus cared enough about Alex's college education that it would matter?

Second, although kind of evil, there's no reason Linus couldn't have just let the principal write the letter and then go back and say, "okay, now I'll be principal; goodbye".

Third, as a far better alternative to my second point, what was stopping Linus from becoming principal and writing the recommendation himself? Oh right - NOTHING.

But otherwise, I liked the episode.

Joel said...

winkyboy - On your first point, I think the principal knew Ben well enough to know that he truly cared about his students. Surely they had been working together for a long time at that point. On your last point, Alex had already stated that she needed a recommendation from a Yale alum. Not that it makes any sense, but that was the motivation.

I thought the exact same thing though on your second point. The principal really didn't have any way to prevent it from coming out after the letter was written, but maybe Ben's reasoning was that he could use the blackmail to get what he wanted anyway. I'm not sure he really wanted the principal position. He just wanted the crazy budget cuts to stop. With those emails in hand, he could still manipulate things with the principal and still get to be a teacher, which is what he wanted.

göklemez said...

maybe after jacob died, the stealth or protection or whatsoever of island is broken. somehow the invisibility of the island was tied to jacob. as long as jacob lived, widmore couldn't find the island; but after he died, it was piece of cake.

Jen said...

Thanks for the interesting review!

Just a thought...could Sun have something to do with Widmore finding the island? The last time we saw them together they seemed to be making some sort of deal, and Sun blamed Ben for Jin's death. Sun has proven she can quietly hold a grudge and then really surprise people (ex. whacking Ben on the head with a paddle).

Sven said...

Hi,

thanks for the great blog.

I have a theory for the next few episode, which you might think about before you do the preview:

MIB is on the way to the hydra. If I remember correctly, there is still an unanswered (well, there are a lot) question: Who were the chasers, Juliet shot at, while paddling towards the Orchid. They were chased by some other canoe and Juliet apparently hit one of them.
As next episode is Sawyer centric, in my eyes he's my biggest favourite on the death-watch.

Altough I hope he got some bigger and happier purpose till the end to get shot by his love.

cbwhellmouth said...

Brian, I get you with the revealing Widmore sitch, but you didn't reveal it - it was listed in the guest stars! All you did, was feed our Lost appetite and try to speculate. Really, please don't stop the Instant Reaction Posts. I'm in the UK and i don't see the new episode til Wednesday midday, so your posts help to space the time out inbetween (however hard it may be to avoid the instant reactions on a late night!). Thanks for the blog.

P.S. If they stared referring to Smokelocke as 'The First' (re: evil incarnate) I'm sure Whedon'll be having a few words (and/or lawsuit) with Darlton

Steve said...

the light and dark backgammon was definately planned all along. They followed it up in the caves.

There are other things that are added, such as Ben, who was originally planned for just 3 episodes, his cancer, and probably the other villiage.

I also wonder about the raft, if they are to protect the candidates, why destroy the raft with 2 of them on it?

So I'm not sure that they knew that much, but I do believe that Adam and eve, the cable(for the underwater hatch) the light and dark pieces... were all planned. I do NOT know that they knew that light and dark would be jacob and smoke monster.

Also, what happend to the whispers? they used to his whispers in with dialog as various points. Not they appear to be fogotten.. whispers were also hidden into dialog, when Ben was interrogated by Sayid in season 2, there were whispers hidden in the tracks encouraging ben not the tell anything.

I really do believe that the plans for how we got to the end game changed, the whispers were replaced once the others became what they were in season 3, that 'morph' of the others may have made the 'whispers' null and void.

I do hope I am wrong as to me, the whispers were as much of a question to me as the Smoke Monster.

Steve said...

the light and dark backgammon was definately planned all along. They followed it up in the caves.

There are other things that are added, such as Ben, who was originally planned for just 3 episodes, his cancer, and probably the other villiage.

I also wonder about the raft, if they are to protect the candidates, why destroy the raft with 2 of them on it?

So I'm not sure that they knew that much, but I do believe that Adam and eve, the cable(for the underwater hatch) the light and dark pieces... were all planned. I do NOT know that they knew that light and dark would be jacob and smoke monster.

Also, what happend to the whispers? they used to his whispers in with dialog as various points. Not they appear to be fogotten.. whispers were also hidden into dialog, when Ben was interrogated by Sayid in season 2, there were whispers hidden in the tracks encouraging ben not the tell anything.

I really do believe that the plans for how we got to the end game changed, the whispers were replaced once the others became what they were in season 3, that 'morph' of the others may have made the 'whispers' null and void.

I do hope I am wrong as to me, the whispers were as much of a question to me as the Smoke Monster.

Steven said...

this is off-topic, but I just had an epiphany about Richard's eyeliner. It ties in with the glyphs we see of ancient Eqyptian pharoahs. The eyes always appear to be heavily lined.

Apologies if this has been pointed out before but I had always thought it was just an oddity with no meaning. Now I see a possible connection to the hieroglyphs we've seen.

dj (David Jones) said...

Total guess on my part, but...

If Eloise Hawking was correct in saying that your way back to the island is to re-create the situation in which you first went there, then maybe Widmore uses Desmond to get to the island. Desmond did shipwreck, and so maybe that has something to do with how Widmore gets back.

My bigger question than how he got back is which side is he on? When told about the folks on the beach, he said "Proceed as planned". What does that mean? Obviously someone has had a master plan for him returning to the island. Who? Smokey? Jacob?

It's going to be interesting to find out. My gut guess is that he's in cahoots with Flocke and is on his way to the Hydra island. I could be wrong though. There seems to be enough evidence on both sides to back Widmore for Smokey and Jacob.

Odds are against team Jacob right now. I wonder if it stays that way.

Ryan Hess said...

I don't know if anyone else has brought this up but here's a tought:

I was telling my brother that I want to see the back story between Widmore and Ben and then it dawned on me that we just saw it. We know that Widmore was having relations off the island and that was the reason he was kicked off. He was essencially in the same situation that the principal was in. Ben must have outed him the same just like he was going to do witht the principal. This is why Widmore hates him so much.

abby said...

Brian - love the blog and really appreciate all the effort you put into it.

Regarding episode previews - may I humbly suggest you totally skip them - don't even look at episode title and guest stars.

This has made my viewing of Lost every Tuesday so much more enjoyable and appreciative of the talent of the Lost team.

Give it a try for one week - you'll never go back (and you'll have more free time!)