“This don’t look like LAX.” – Sawyer
Whoa (and if you haven’t read my quick and dirty LOST primer, that’s a Keanu Reeves in The Matrix “Whoa”, not a Joey Lawrence on Blossom “Whoa”).
LOST has always been about what you can take at face value and what you can’t. In Tuesday night’s episode when Boone implies he couldn’t bring his sister with him, and Locke talks about going on his walkabout, should we suppose they’re lying because of what happened in Season 1?
Well, we’re not about to find out.
The timeline, it appears, has been split. There’s a timeline on the plane (that kicks off just before the plane was going to crash) and there’s everyone on the island pushed forward in time by the explosion of the Hydrogen Bomb, but still on the island.
So from the credits, it looks like Sayid, Richard, Desmond, Claire, Ben, Frank, Jack, Hurley, Sawyer, Jin, Sun, Miles, Kate, Locke (or whoever wears his face) and Ilana are the main cast this season. As for the guest stars, Bernard, Rose, Charlie, Boone, Frogurt and Dr. Arzt’s appearances pretty much amounted to a game of hey-look-those-characters-we-recognize-are-here! Jacob’s appearance pushed the main characters (and hopefully the story) forward, and Juliet was given an appropriately dramatic death. I was sorry to see Juliet go, but Elizabeth Mitchell’s status as a guest star in last night’s episode, her commitment to V, and the fact that the last time we saw her she was blowing up a Hydrogen Bomb didn’t make me very bullish about her continued presence on the show. I’ll miss her chemistry with Sawyer, and I dread the inevitable return of the Jack-Kate-Sawyer love triangle.
The episode was essentially split into three parts – at the Swan/Temple, on the Bizarro Oceanic flight 815, and on the beach by the statue foot, so that’s how I’ll break down the review.
The Swan/The Temple
Jumping forward from 1977 to 2007 hurls Jack, Sawyer, and the rest into crisis control mode, which is a pretty familiar place for them to be. The attempt to save Juliet provided plenty of drama, including her genuinely touching death and the rekindling of the animosity between Jack and Sawyer. The big reveal from Juliet (through Miles) that, “It worked,” is open for debate, but that’s par for the course here.
The second hour of the show found those characters in high adventure mode, following the instructions of the ghostly Jacob to the mysterious Temple where Sayid would be healed. A mini-mystery was resolved (what’s in the guitar case?), new Others were introduced, and the Temple is finally revealed. The Temple seemed pretty standard – lots of exposed stone and rough passageways – which is fine; not everything on LOST needs to be mind-blowingly strange.
The pool that they put Sayid into seems to be ground zero for the healing powers of the island (see also, Locke, paralyzed, Rose, cancer, and Ben, shot). Naveen Andrews’ presence in the regular cast made me confident he wouldn’t die, but I liked how they drew it out just a bit – especially the scene of Jack trying to resuscitate Sayid while Kate told him it was too late, an almost beat-for-beat reprise of the scene with Charlie after he was hanged in Season 1. Fortunately, this didn’t play out over the courses of like, 8 episodes, which can be the case on this show.
Bizarro Oceanic 815
Like a lot of the things that happen on LOST, the scenes on Bizarro Oceanic 815 should make more sense once we see the big picture. Last night, it was fun playing the hey-look-what-happened-differently game even if we don’t know what it all signifies.
Basically we know that Jack’s still a doctor (but a nervous flier), Locke’s still in a wheelchair (but a little more chipper), and Kate’s still a fugitive (with an overmatched escort). Having Charlie back was nice, even if it was just fan service, and although she was introduced with a rush at the end, it’s nice to have Claire back, too.
So this was where all the juicy mythology came out. We do learn that the smoke monster and the mysterious man in black are one and the same, but it’s not clear what that means. Either way, he’s still walking around looking like John Locke. I don’t know if there’s a practical reason for this disguise other than giving them a way to keep Terry O’Quinn on the show, which is probably reason enough.
After getting Ben to kill Jacob, faux Locke asks to see Richard. After a confrontation with Jacob’s bodyguards, he knocks Richard out and carries him off, so clearly he wants something more than Richard’s death.
There’s been a lot of chatter that this season would feature an epic throw down between good and evil, and they’re not wasting any time on the island. The Others and the castaways are seen fortifying the temple at the end of the episode, and the man in black/smoke monster/faux Locke has stated that his agenda is to “go home”, which seems to mean “leave the island”, which I’m guessing is a bad thing. We’ll find out.
Welcome back to the island.
- Desmond’s on the plane! And nobody sees him but Jack. MYSTERY!
- In the future where the plane doesn’t crash, THE ISLAND IS UNDERWATER!
- Hurley is apparently super lucky in the alternate timeline.
- Sawyer’s all, “I’m gonna kill Jack if Juliet dies,” then Kate’s all, “Don’t,” then Sawyer’s all, “No, letting him suffer is better.” YAWN
- Nice of Miles to relay Juliet’s final, cryptic thoughts.
- Charlie almost chokes to death swallowing his stash and then tells Jack, “I was supposed to die.” Cuz remember like all of Season 3 when his death was foretold?
- “Jim, kiss me.” “You’re kinda bloody.”
- Even in an alternate reality, Marshal Edward Mars gets beat up by a girl.
- So when they hauled the Ankh out of the guitar case, the first thing everyone thought was Ace of Base, right?