Monday, May 03, 2010

Lost - "The Candidate"

Episode Title: “The Candidate”

Brian’s Deeper Meaning Guess: It doesn’t make sense, but I think that last week’s episode title, “The Last Recruit”, was somehow a reference to Jack. Throughout the season, we’ve seen Locke “recruiting” our Survivors (well, at least Claire, Sayid, and Sawyer) by promising them things in return for siding with him. Although the episode ended with SmokeLocke saving Jack from Widmore’s bombs, telling him “you’re with me now” – we all know that Jack is ANYTHING but “with him”. The whole reason that he jumped off the Elizabeth and left his fellow Survivors behind is because he wants to do the opposite of what SmokeLocke does. That doesn’t sound like a “recruit” to me. Also, what about Hurley and Sun / Jin? They are “Candidates” who have yet to been recruited by SmokeLocke, so how could Jack be the last one?

This might be one of Lost’s great episode title mysteries, right up there with “Eggtown”… and perhaps this week’s episode.

Likewise, my gut is telling me that this week’s episode title, “The Candidate”, must be another reference to Jack, right? After all, the title is THE Candidate – singular… and he’s the only Candidate currently isolated from the other potential Candidates. Hurley, Sawyer, and Sun / Jin are all on Hydra Island – all are alive, all are non-zombies, all seem like legitimate options to replace Jacob. Back on the Main Island, we’ve got Jack, SmokeLocke, and Sayid – where only Jack seems like a realistic option to replace Jacob – making him “The Candidate”.

Of course, the other option is that this week is a bloodbath.

Remember my Death Watch from the “Lost… and Gone Forever Bye Week Spectacular”? Remember how depressing it was, and how I basically could justify why each character would die? Could it be that this episode title is a hint that after this week ends, only one Candidate will be left standing?

It seems a little extreme, especially with four hours of the season remaining – but that would be a very logical explanation for this week’s title, wouldn’t it?

Guest Stars: Alan Dale as Charles Widmore, Kevin Tighe as Anthony Cooper, Sam Anderson as Bernard, Katey Sagal as Helen, Fred Koehler as Seamus, Maile Holck as Nurse, Casey Adams as Wheeler, Ken Elliott as Orderly, Christopher McGahan as Paul and Alan Seabock as Sub Captain.

Guest Star Breakdown: The guest stars break down fairly predictably based on where the action for the episode should be headed – we’ve got the standard hospital workers (Nurse, Wheeler, Orderly) and the return of Widmore’s Crew that have guested numerous times this season, but I probably wouldn’t recognize if they walked into my front door (Seamus, Paul – aka “Clipboard Guy”, Sub Captain). The two big ones for this week are Anthony Cooper and Bernard.

Cooper’s inclusion probably means that he (along with Helen) are called to the hospital after Locke’s accident, and that the audience will finally found out the exact nature of the relationship between Locke and his father (which apparently is pretty friendly, based on the happy picture of the two of them on Locke’s desk – and that Locke was talking about inviting him to the wedding). But this begs the question – if Locke didn’t become paralyzed by being pushed out of a high-rise window by his jerk father, how did he become paralyzed? I would welcome an answer to that little Flash Sideways mystery as well.

Bernard’s inclusion is an obvious rebuttal to my comments in the Bye Week Spectacular, where I said that the writers wanted us to forget about Rose and Bernard so that they wouldn’t have to come up with an explanation for where the two have been for the past few months / years. Just kidding – since Bernard is in the guest star list, but Rose is not, it seems likely that Bernard will also be appearing in the Flash Sideways. Do dentists work at hospitals?

Episode Description: Jack must decide whether or not to trust Locke after he is asked to follow through on a difficult task.

Episode Breakdown: Logic tells us that SmokeLocke is going to pick up right where he left off last week, heading to Hydra Island to reunite with his Candidates and to take on Widmore in “The Battle for the Island”. Does Jack trust SmokeLocke? Of course not. Will he go along for the ride in an effort to try and understand SmokeLocke’s true intentions and figure out how to stop him? Most definitely.

What is the “difficult task” that SmokeLocke tasks Jack with? The last time an episode description was worded like this, it was when SmokeLocke was convincing Ben to murder Jacob – could it be that this time it’s about Jack murdering Widmore? Maybe SmokeLocke promises to save all of his friends if he agrees to go along with him. Maybe he claims that the only way to save the Island is to go along with him. Either way, it’s going to be something that makes Jack question what his true purpose on the Island is, who he can trust, and what he should do. He’s going to be all alone in this decision, and it’s finally going to see if all that time spent staring out at the ocean paid off.

Until tomorrow night.

Happy Losting!


Brendan said...

I think we're over-thinking a bit here. The Candidate is definitely Jack, and he was definitely "the Last Recruit," i.e. the only one SmokeLocke hadn't yet been in contact with to offer his "deal with the devil."

Seems pretty clear to me that Jack is the new Jacob, because the Jack/Locke conflict has been there from the beginning and dovetails perfectly with the Jacob/Anti-Jacob conflict. I'm becoming more convinced that LOST ends with Jack and Locke (well, Smokey now trapped in Locke's body forever) on the beach a la Jacob/Anti-Jacob in "The Incident."
The Circle, indeed.

Sawyer5665 said...

Tonight's gonna be HUGE!! Brian's instant reaction is going to be "HOLY S***!!!" LOL

There has been a lot of chatter about tonight's episode being a "game changer" and to have a box of kleenex nearby. I am scared and excited at the same time.

Roberto said...

My feelings can be partly summed up by another reference to Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory: "The suspense is terrible...I hope it'll last."

Can't wait to find out what happens tonight.

Rob Patterson said...

I give the over/under on character (not extras) deaths at 6.

Tired of speculation, just want to watch... T-minus 10 1/2 hours for me on the West Coast.

Sean said...

Maybe it's just me being super hopeful for a happy ending for Locke, but is there anyway that the real Locke stands a chance of coming back and being the/a candidate?

I know, probably not, but I am really hoping that somehow Desmond's actions kill the MIB and somehow Locke's consciousness is transferred.

Lost In FL said...

What if Jack must decide whether or not to trust Locke IN THE FLASH SIDEWAYS???!!! I mean, Jack is about to operate on Locke. Maybe Locke wakes up after the surgery "remembering" everything that happened in his other life. Maybe Locke asks Jack to do something based on his "epiphany"???!!!

It was the first thought that came across my mind when I read it...

I don't know... Just a thought!

Nick R. said...


"The Candidate" does refer to Jack, but as SMOKELOCKE'S REPLACEMENT! Now that would be a twist. Maybe Smokey gets out, but he needs to have someone replace him... it's a stretch... a really really long stretch.

Smokey = Jack
Jacob = Sawyer

Now wouldn't that be nutty?

Kristen said...

Based on Brian's analysis and the fact that one of the guest stars is a "Sub Captain" . . . instead of the other candidates dying, maybe Sawyer is able to go through with his plan and the rest of the candidates leave the island?!

Rob Patterson said...

leave the island? are you kidding me, that means the sub captain is introduced to be killed. This is LOST were talking about! bring on the carnage!

Jabbadoo said...

Certainly a lot of people are going to be killed, and it would be silly to have 'em all go in the last episode... I think we'll see a death or two, tonight.

Sba said...

What's the over under on Tina Fey getting killed tonight?

Jack said...

Guys and Gals,

Possible spoilers ahead...

Here is why I think there will be plenty of deaths tonight.

1) Tonight’s episode is called 'The Candidate'. As Brian noted, this might mean we will be down to 1 by the end of the Episode (everybody but Jacob's replacement dies). I don't know if all but the The Candidate will die, but I think it safe to say that it's time to start killing people off in the Island reality.

2) Next week’s episode is called 'Across the Sea'. It is supposedly about the origins of Jacob and MIB. It’s just like LOST to leave us with a huge cliffhanger or huge event and then go to a full on backstory episode and not reference it all, thus making us wait 2 weeks for the payoff/answers.

3) The last episode before the Finale (after next week) is called 'What they Died For'. That could mean a lot of things, but I think it will refer to the potential candidates that die tonight.

We shall see. In any case, the next 19 days will be damn good.

Great work Brian. Thanks for all of the effort over the years.

Christine said...

Sean, I'm with you! I have a feeling that Jack will cure Locke in the Sideways world AFTER Jack does something on the Island. I have no idea what that something is, but I think it's a game-changer, as when Ben decided to trust Ilana (and then Alex got the happy ending), and when Sayid decided not to kill Desmond (we haven't seen what happened as a result of that yet).

It has to be a happy ending, dammit! I feel like because Jack, the man of science, has become Jack, the man of faith, there will be some sort of peaceful coexistence between the MIB and Jacob, or the new MIB and the new Jacob. There is no yin without the yang.

Can't. Wait!

Anonymous said...

This idea came from my wife when lost started. Probably season one. I laughed as i thought it was crazy...not so much now

Backgammon is the first board game ever invented dating back to Mesopotamian era. Look at some of the symbols on the boards. Mother Earth's sons battled on earth playing a backgammon game...


Joani said...
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