Yay! It's another hour of the Jack/Kate/Sawyer love triangle, with added doses of Jack being a drunken, bullying idiot! Season three "Lost," how I've missed you!
Look, I recognize that Jack is the show's main character, and that there are fans out there somewhere who actually care about who Kate chooses (even though I've never met any of them), and that episodes like "Something Nice Back Home" are obligatory now and then. But I find him and his love life simultaneously boring and obnoxious. Every time the show does a Jack episode, I can tell that Lindelof, Cuse and company are going for some kind of tragically flawed hero riff, but Jack is so insufferable that it never works. I shouldn't be rooting for the hero to die on the table during his appendectomy, you know?
Thankfully, this one wasn't a straight-up Jack episode, as we spent a good amount of time with Sawyer and company trekking through the jungle, and with Jin taking the measure of Dan and Charlotte on the trip to and from the medical station. Without the subplots with the supporting cast, or the chilling scene in Hurley's hospital room, "Something Nice Back Home" would have been just as tiresome as Jack; with all those scenes, I was willing to suffer through Jack again not learning to leave well enough alone, knowing that eventually the POV would shift to someone I actually care about.
Since I don't much want to dissect the past, present and future state of the triangle (or quadrangle, if you factor in Juliet and he role as Jack's beard), let's move to the bullet points and talk about all the other Craphole Island hijinx this week:
- Christian's in Jacob's cabin (as Zapruder'ed by various fans in the season premiere), he's in the lobby of Jack's medical practice in the future, and now he's visiting with his grandson in the present. Jack's "You're not even related to him!" comment to Kate in the flash-forward implies that he'll find out that Claire is his sister, and Aaron his nephew, sometime between now and when they get off the island. While I have my issues with Jack, I like Christian enough that I'm looking forward to the inevitable Shephard family reunion. One question about Christian's appearance at the campfire: the fact that he could hold Aaron would suggest he's corporeal, but does Miles seeing him tell us anything? How do Miles' powers work? Can he automatically tell the difference between a ghost and a live person if he goes into a situation not knowing whom he'll be seeing?
- I'm going to miss Daniel Dae Kim after Jin is (presumably) killed off, but at least we get to watch him work until then. Jin's learned his leg-breaking lessons well from Sun's dad. However, just because he forced Charlotte to admit she spoke Korean doesn't mean he has any real power to force her to uphold the agreement. We know Sun gets off the island and Jin doesn't, but for all we know, Charlotte had nothing to do with it.
- How many commandos did Frank bring to the island in the first place? The chopper's not that big, and there were at least four guys still with Keamy (including the wounded one). How did any of them survive Smokey's rampage, let alone most (or maybe all) of them?
- Speaking of getting off the island, we did glean some useful fragments from Jack and Kate's climactic argument -- specifically, that Sawyer chose not to leave the island (and is presumably still alive in the future), and that Jack did something that allowed Kate to leave.
- I'll also give Matthew Fox this: he plays Jack's mania well, even if I'm tired with the ways the character tends to channel his craziness. The scene at Santa Rosa (which, for you timeline folks, obviously took place after the flashforwards in both the season premiere and "Eggtown," but before the original flashforward last season) was so nerve-wracking because Jorge Garcia did such a great job of showing how Hurley had already given up, but also because Fox did an equally good job showing the cracks starting to form in Jack that would lead him to the state he's in by "Through the Looking Glass."
- Hurley believes he and the rest of the Oceanic Six are all dead and trapped in some kind of purgatory. Has he been reading the "Lost" message boards? That was one of the earliest and most prevalent theories about the island itself.
- Rousseau's officially dead, for those of you holding out hope she might stagger out of the jungle seven or eight episodes from now so we could get the required Danielle/Alex flashback.
- Rose! And Rose getting in Charlotte's face! Lovely! At first, when she started proposing a conspiracy theory to Bernard, I thought she would suggest that the freighter people somehow poisoned Jack; the notion that the island made Jack sick to prevent their rescue hadn't occurred to me, but as soon as Rose said it, the hairs on the back of my neck stood up.
- Will "CLAAIIRRRRRRE!!!!!!" become the new "WAAAAAALLLLLTTTTTT!!!!!"?