Lost: Should’ve put a ring on it

I have to admit, I am a little disappointed in last night’s episode of Lost. Last episode brought the _bang_ and last night brought the _bore_. With all of the promises of answers and action, I guess I got my hopes up for a season filled with as much mystery and excitement as any season premiere or finale. I know that is a lot to ask, but even so, not much happened last night.

Let’s start with the events off the Island, since I find them the most intriguing. Kate, running from the marshal and the police, jumped into a cab that was already occupied by Claire and orders the driver, at gunpoint, to drive. At the first opportunity, the driver runs out of the car and after another mile or two, Claire begs to be let out and Kate obliges. All alone, Kate drives to a car mechanic to borrow the tools to get her handcuffs off. He lets her use his bathroom so she takes the bag Claire left to find clothes to change into. But all she finds in the bag are baby supplies (including a stuffed killer whale that appeared in a season 4 flash-forward). Kate then goes back to where Claire is sitting on the side of the road and offers to drive her to her original destination. Along the way, Claire explains that she is in California to meet the couple who are going to adopt her baby. When they get to the couple’s house, however, the woman explains that her husband left her and she could no longer adopt Claire’s baby. At that moment, Claire goes into labor and Kate drives her to the hospital. Once in the delivery room, Dr. Ethan Goodspeed (better known as Ethan Rom, son of Dharma leader Horace Goodspeed and the Others’ surgeon who drugged Claire and planned to take her baby on the Island) comes to tell Claire she can either deliver the baby early or he can give her drugs to delay the delivery. Claire decides to wait but at that moment something goes wrong with the baby and Claire screams out “Aaron!” Kate and Claire exchange a super-weird glance and Claire admits later that it was weird she had a name picked out for the baby she planned to give away. Soon after, the cops come looking for “Joan Hart” (the pseudonym Kate used in the season one episode where she accidentally killed Tom) but Claire tells them she had already left.

On the island, which is now in the year 2007 in case you lost track, the episode picked back up in the temple with Jack, Kate, Sawyer, Hurley, Jin, Miles and a newly resurrected Sayid being held captive (for their own safety or for the “other Others’” secretive purposes? Not sure yet, but I’m leaning toward protective measures). Sawyer escapes and Kate offers to go after him — shocker! Jin and two “other Others” accompany her.

The guy in charge, whom we learn is named Dogan, brings Sayid in for questioning, which apparently translates to torture. He silently puts Sayid through electric shock and branding before determining that he has not passed the test and is “claimed.” Dogan tells Jack to give Sayid a green pill, but when Jack attempts to, Sayid’s complete trust in him makes him rethink the plan. Jack then goes back to Dogan’s lair and takes the pill himself. Not until Dogan has Heimliched the pill out of his digestive tract does he admit that it is a poison. He explains that Sayid has a darkness growing within him that will take over his personality once it reaches his heart. When Jack asks where he got his information, Dogan replies that he knows it because it happened to Jack’s sister — Claire.

Out in the jungle, Kate attacks the “other Others,” named Justin and Aldo, right after Aldo reveals that he was the mind-washing Room 23 guard she hit when she escaped, and runs off, leaving Jin in the jungle to search for Sun. Kate makes it to the Dharma barracks and finds Sawyer in the house he shared with Juliet. They go out to the dock and have a heartfelt moment in which Sawyer really lets his pain sink in. He admits that he feels guilt for making Juliet stay on the island so he would not have to be alone and also tells Kate that he was planning to propose to “Blondie.” In a Desmond-esque move, he chucks the engagement ring (by the way, where exactly is the Tiffany’s on the island?) into the water. Kate also confides to Sawyer that she returned to bring Claire back to Aaron.

While Kate and Sawyer comfort each other, Justin and Aldo find Jin and Aldo threatens to kill him (his pal objects, saying “He’s one of them!”). Jin attempts to run away, but gets his leg stuck in a steel trap. No worries though, a woman appears from the jungle and shoots the “other Others.” Rousseau back from the dead? Nope, it’s no other than disappearing mommy — and apparently infected — Claire Littleton!

Could the infection be the same thing as the Smoke Monster — or as I posited last week, Jacob — inhabiting dead bodies? At first I thought yes, but now I am not so sure. For one, the only person we know for certain to be inhabited is Locke, and yet Locke’s dead body remained whereas I only see one Sayid body in the temple. Secondly, let us not forget Rousseau’s use of the same term. She described her crew as being infected after they had emerged from the hole that leads to the temple. Their condition was so bad that she was forced to kill them in order to save herself. I think something’s in that temple water that causes this infection.

As for the off-Island stuff, I still think that they retain some memory or at least consciousness of their shared experiences on the Island. The comments on the plane and Kate and Claire’s weird exchange in the hospital have convinced me that they all know something is amiss. However, if they do remember each other, Kate and Claire would probably not have been so kind to Dr. Goodspeed, so I do not know at this point how to reconcile that.

Also, please take note of the parallels between the off-Island action and what has already happened on the show. Claire going into false labor (happened on the Island right after the crash), Kate helping Claire when she was all alone (Kate helped Claire deliver Aaron alone in the jungle) and Ethan talking about sticking Claire with needles (he did in the Dharma station on the island). I have a feeling these things will keep popping up.

In case you missed it, Claire’s ultrasound was dated October 22, 2004 when we know that Oceanic flight 815 was scheduled to land in L.A. on September 22, 2004. How exactly did that happen? As I said last week, I think the people on the island still have some major task to fulfill that will sink the island and send them back pre-crash. I assumed it would send them back to Oceanic 815, but perhaps it sends them back farther, and they use that month, and the knowledge they gained from years on the Island, to become better people.

I also want to bring up a point that I forgot to mention in my last blog. Did anyone else catch the crucifixion pose Sayid had when they lifted him out of the water in the season premiere? As my brother always points out, there are no accidents in “Lost.” I’m not equating Sayid’s death with that of Jesus Christ’s, but could it be a subtle hint that Sayid is actually the force of good?

Two of my bosses at the Rec Center, Outdoor Rec chief Theran Fisher and Sports Club maestro Greg Henderson, posited a theory with me about last week’s episode that I wanted to share with you all. They believe that Juliet’s little loopy line about going out for coffee that many mistook for pre-death nonsense was actually a little timeline traversing. As in she was flashing between her Island life and a pre-Island life (I would also like to suggest that she may be flashing to the same life that is featured in the off-Island timeline.). She then wanted to tell Sawyer, “It worked,” because she realized she was jumping between the two. This theory could be backed up by Charlotte’s near-death jumping around in time in season five and Desmond’s time-traveling experience in season four.

I also recommend that you all check out EW’s interview with Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, the show’s producers. It offers some interesting insight and information on season six, including:

* They are calling the off-Island action “flash-sideways”
* Little differences exist in the flash-sideways lives of the characters, but deep-down they are the same people
* They don’t use the term “alternate reality” because they do not want to suggest that one of the timelines is not real
* Season six is about the consequences of trying to change the past, such as detonating a bomb to make the plane never crash, but forgetting that it can change the rest of your past as well.

So chew on that for a week, and as always, tell me what you’re thinking through the comment board below or e-mail me at sefinc@wm.edu. If I like your thoughts I’ll share them the next week!


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