I mean shit both ways:
1. Holy shit I can't believe they just killed four major Lost characters in the span of ten minutes.
2. The shit is really hitting the fan. I guess we're playing for keeps from here on out.
All you people who were trying to argue that SmokeLocke could have been the "good guy" all season, the deaths of Sun, Jin, Frank, and Sayid are on your heads. I hope you're happy with yourselves.
In actuality it looks like Sawyer is the poor guy who is actually responsible for their deaths. I think Jack was right - SmokeLocke couldn't kill any of the Candidates on his own, but once Sawyer intervened and messed with the explosive device, well then it was his fault, not SmokeLocke's... a nice little mini-loophole.
A few moments of the episode were pretty well telegraphed (SmokeLocke stealing the watch, locating the C-4, swapping backpacks with Jack) - but I was thinking that in the end, it would be Jack winning out, convincing Sawyer to trust the Island... but if that happened, I have to think that only Jack, Sawyer, Hurley, Sayid and Sun (or Jin) would have magically survived, as they were Candidates and the others (Frank, Kate, Sun or Jin) were not. In the end, I guess we can't blame Sawyer too much - the net result of his decision was that Kate lives rather than Sun / Jin and Sayid. Frank was screwed either way. Given the chance between saving Kate or Sayid - I probably would have gone with Kate as well. Sorry Sayid - you're cute... but not my type.
I must say, I'm pretty shocked that the writers killed BOTH Sun and Jin - the two characters left on the Island who actually had a chance for a happy ending, and two of the few characters who actually had someone to get back to off-Island in Reality #1 (Ji-Yeon). But honestly, their fate was sealed when Jin got sappy during their reunion.
As for Frank, part of me is holding out hope that he somehow survives. After all, we didn't see any evidence of him dying - just getting knocked out and going under water. Who's to say that he didn't wake up and swim out? I have to think that the writers would have given us at least a brief shot of his dead body in the submarine if he actually died - his character deserves more than an off-camera death, doesn't he? Yep, I'm sad that Frank is gone - but would probably bet money that he's not actually dead.
Sayid got the happy death that we (or at least, I) was hoping for - redemption. Saving his friends, revealing to Jack where Desmond was trapped (critical!), and getting blown to bits. In the end, the fact that Sayid both attempted to save the Survivors, and then sacrificed himself for them, makes me think that he did reclaim a little bit of his soul, and at least died in a way that would make Nadia proud.
So now what?
Well, it seems as though next week is our "Jacob and Anti-Jacob Flashback Episode", you know, the one that is rumored to not feature ANY of the main characters on Lost? If the rumors are true, it means we have two weeks before the action on the Island will again move forward, meaning we have plenty of time to ponder the answers to these questions before the final three hours of On-Island action of Lost...
Candidates. It looks like we're down to the final three - Jack, Sawyer, and Hurley. Kate is in really bad shape right now (truth be told, I thought she died earlier in this week's episode when she was shot). Widmore and Sawyer are right - she's not a Candidate, so she's expendable. That's not a good thing. There's also this little rushed conversation between Sayid and Jack before everything went to hell:
SAYID: "There's a well on the main Island, half a mile south from the camp we just left. Desmond's inside. Locke wants him dead. Which means you're going to need him."
JACK: "Why are you telling me this?"
SAYID: "Because it's going to be you, Jack."
Did Sayid mean that Jack was going to be "The Candidate" (like the episode title), as if he knows that Jack is the one that is destined to be the next Jacob? Or does this mean that he just knows that Jack is going to be the one to defeat SmokeLocke, and that Desmond is the key?
Non-Candidates. Speaking of Desmond, outside of the Candidates, there are a few remaining players in the final act of Lost - Widmore, Zoe, Alpert, Ben, and Miles - not to mention any other random Others / members of Widmore's crew who will most certainly die the next time they appear on screen.
Now the action will shift back to the Main Island (damn, we didn't get the resolution to the Juliet Outrigger scene... yet) with Jack, Sawyer, Kate, and Hurley reuniting with Desmond - who will hopefully enlighten them to their mission, and where they go from here. But now that our remaining Survivors know SmokeLocke's true intentions, how is he going to kill the remaining Candidates? He can still use Kate as a pawn in his game - but I don't see how he'll be able to take out all three of them... unless he doesn't have to.
I have this sneaking suspicion that Team Alpert is going to show up in an attempt to blow up SmokeLocke... and may inadvertently put the lives of the remaining Candidates in danger in the process - at least that's probably what SmokeLocke is hoping for... or playing on Claire's abandonment fears to have her shoot them all out of anger.
Flash Sideways. I have to admit, the Flash Sideways were super enjoyable this week, mostly due to all the ironic callbacks to previous episodes (both in action and words) and Jack's slow realization that it's a little weird that everyone is so connected to Oceanic 815. Also, did Bernard somehow know exactly what was going on in Reality #2? The way that he said "of course I remember" Anthony Cooper's name makes one wonder if he's already had his epiphany - or if the writers just meant that he could never forget someone who was in such a horrific accident. Ironically, a plane crash.
In other news, there were plenty of chances for Jack and Locke to have their epiphanies - but it wasn't obvious that either had one, which makes you wonder what it's going to take for them to wake up - or if they ever will. I really don't see Jack performing the surgery on Locke at this point (he's now turned him down multiple times, and we understand WHY he's doing it - to remind him of the pain he caused his father). I'm almost to the point where I don't want Jack to perform the surgery - he's approaching Desmond-esque Flash Sideways creepiness with his insistence.
Although I hate it, with all the death and sadness this episode - and the prospect of more to come - you almost wonder if Reality #2 is going to be the end game for at least some of our Survivors - perhaps the ones who haven't had the epiphany? Could that explain why those who are dead realize it's fake (they don't get a second chance at life), and that the other ones are those whose consciousness will remain in Reality #1? That would mean Desmond and Hurley (so far) in Reality #1 - but that there's still a chance for Sun and Jin to live happily ever after in Reality #2. Yeah, there was a little bit of sideways bleeding from Sun while being wheeled into the hospital - and a little from Locke this week ("Push the button" and "I wish you believed in me") - but neither was the eye opening epiphanies that the others have had.
If this is the case, it would explain why we haven't seen the epiphanies for the other characters in the Flash Sideways - the writers don't want to tip their hands at their fate.
With that, my thoughts are turning to gibberish, so we'll call it a wrap. Mourn death, celebrate life, and get rip-roaring drunk in the Comments section below!
Oh - and if you're really depressed, this will cheer you up. They just announced that the Lost Series Finale will now be TWO AND A HALF HOURS LONG - running from 9:00 - 11:30, pre-empting local news! That means Lost will be on ABC from 7:00 - 9:00 (Recap Show), 9:00 - 11:30 (Series Finale), and 11:30 - 12:30 (Jimmy Kimmel Special). That means there will be FIVE AND A HALF HOURS OF LOST on Sunday, May 23.
Chances of Brian going to work on Monday, May 24th? Slim.