Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Lost, "LA X": Multi-tasking

A review of the "Lost" final season premiere coming up just as soon as I bring a book into a cave...
"My condition is irreversible." -Locke
"Nothing is irreversible." -Jack
Hot damn, that was fun.

The traveling comedy/obfuscation team of Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse spent much of this final "Lost" hiatus promising that season six would have a new narrative structure, just as we got in seasons four (flash-forwards) and five (time travel). Having taken us both back and forwards through time, turns out the game for year six involves going sideways, with a "Sliding Doors"(*) approach that allows Cuselof to have it both ways with last year's cliffhanger, as we see one timeline where Faraday's plan worked and Jack and company wound up back on the plane in 2004, and another where it didn't and everyone's in the middle of a big mess on Craphole Island in 2007.

(*) I swear, I spent the first fifteen minutes after the premiere ended wrestling with whether to use "Sliding Sawyers" as a subject line, or if that would be an unfair giveaway for time-shifters, folks on the West Coast, etc. Ain't easy when my fondness for semi-clever wordplay clashes with my hawkishness about spoiler protection.

It was clear quickly that there was something hinky with the 2004 timeline, particularly since I had only recently rewatched the pilot to write this morning's column. Jack's hair was obviously wrong (as was Rose's), but so were subtler details like the dialogue between Jack and Cindy, or the fact that she gives him only one bottle here, when she slipped him two in the pilot. And then as the flight went along, things became more and more disconnected from the timeline we originally knew: Desmond is on board, Hurley is blissfully lucky, Boone failed to bring Shannon home, etc.

(Perhaps the biggest change of all in the new timeline: the island is underwater. So when Juliet set off Jughead, a whole lotta people died. Hell of a plan, Jack.)

It's a trope of many comic book time travel stories that if you go back in time to change the past, all you do is create an alternate timeline, while the old one you wanted to change still exists. Based on Juliet's posthumous declaration to Sawyer that "It worked" (and based on Lindelof's comic book bonafides), I'm going to assume that's the operating theory here, and that the 2004 scenes aren't some extended dream sequence.

For a brief period, I began to wonder if the gimmick was worth the screen time, and the effort of bringing back Ian Somerhalder, Dominic Monaghan and the rest. Whether the 2004 timeline is real or not (and there comes a point where I have to set my inner comic book nerd aside and acknowledge that none of this is real), the fact is I've spent the last 5 years being invested in the characters back on the island in 2007, and it's their stories I want to see continued.

And, certainly, the parts of "LA X" that resonated with me most deeply were the ones taking place on the island, about which I'll have plenty to say in a bit. But as the premiere moved along and we kept zipping back to hang out on Oceanic 815 (and then in the airport), I began to have the same feeling I did when I rewatched the pilot: I was just so happy to be reminded of when I liked Jack or when Locke was a serene wise man and not a pig-headed victim. I remembered that I did, once upon a time, care about Boone and Charlie (and the unfortunately-absent Shannon). And as the characters landed at LAX and their stories took unexpected turns - Kate escaping from Marshal Mars (and commandeering a cab occupied by Claire, in a neat convergence of Aaron's two mommies), Charlie and Jin independently winding up in custody, Jack and Locke bonding over their respective lost luggage (and Jack and his savior complex wondering if he can fix Locke's wrecked spine) - I couldn't help but be curious about where this was all going.

Not only do I wonder where these alt-stories will travel, but what connection it's all going to have to the "proper" timeline on the island. Will they just be used to illuminate characters' behavior in the island present, the same way they did back in the early flashback days (pre-Jack's tattoos, at least)? Or is the parallel structure telling us something else? Will Alt-Jack reach a point in his time on the mainland where he realizes, just as his bearded counterpart once did, that he has to go back? Might there be a circumstance where the two Sawyers meet and the universe explodes in a collision of sarcasm and anti-sarcasm? Or will the island and mainland timelines remain independent for the rest of the show's run?

If the 2004 scenes were often intriguing, and occasionally distracting, they were still a sideshow to the main event taking place back on the island.

Where to begin? With the confirmation that Evil Locke (or the Man in Black, or Esau, or whatever we want to call him), is Smokey?

With Sawyer and Juliet's tearful, and all-too-brief reunion in the wreckage of the Swan station?

With our first visit to the temple of The Others, and our introduction to two new recurring characters played by John Hawkes (another "Deadwood" alum) and Hiroyuki Sanada?

With Sayid's death and apparent resurrection?

Let's bounce around, why don't we?

When Locke turned out to not be Locke in last year's finale, I wondered exactly why the smoke monster - which we'd been previously told was the island's "security system" - would tell Ben to blindly follow a man who turned out to not be acting in the interests of the island (and/or Jacob, if you can separate the two). Well, now we know: Smokey ain't working for Jacob, but against him, and is made up of the Man in Black. Like so many "Lost" mysteries, the explanation raises up plenty of new questions - for starters, why Smokey would be willing to work with Ben in previous periods, when Ben was following the orders of Jacob - but we finally have something resembling a definitive answer of exactly what/who the monster is. Now we just need to know exactly who/what Esau is. Heh.

Whatever he/it is, Terry O'Quinn is clearly relishing the chance to play this new, mysterious, dangerous character, and Non-Locke's powers and knowledge of people like Ben and Richard (whom he last saw when Richard was "in chains") creates an unsettling dynamic among these characters who are so used to being in charge. And he also finally, more clearly delineates between the good guys and the bad guys (I think). Since Jacob=light, and Esau=dark, and The Others were with Jacob, and our heroes are now with The Others, that should lay things clear, right? (Of course, we'll still need to learn why The Others were all into kidnapping, torture and other experiments while Jacob was still alive, or if we're just supposed to write that off to Ben being kind of a dick as the human leader.)

And since Ben made clear last season that the island, as far as he knew, could not resurrect people - which was then confirmed when we saw Locke's corpse and discovered that the guy we thought was Locke was really the Man in Black - does that mean we shouldn't be so quick to assume the Sayid who sat up at episode's end is really our Sayid? Could Jacob be using Sayid's body to find his own loophole in this never-ending fight? Or did he just know that the only way to defeat an immortal man who can turn into a smoke monster is with a communications expert-turned-torturer-turned-international-assassin with great hair?

If Sayid's back to life for real, great, but if not, I think I'm okay with it. It felt like the character hit a natural stopping point after he shot young Ben last season, and his opening moments with Hurley in "LA X" suggested the show was saying goodbye to that iteration of Sayid just as Sayid was preparing to say goodbye to this mortal coil. (And, as with Alt-Locke, Naveen Andrews will still get to play a version of the character we know so well.)

Whether Sayid got resurrected or just reanimated and possessed, he's still ambulatory in some fashion, where Juliet appears to be so dead that not even Miracle Max could do anything for her. Josh Holloway and Elizabeth Mitchell got to put a moving coda onto the couple they created with the writers last year, and it was every bit as heart-wrenching as Juliet's plunge into the Swan shaft at the end of "The Incident." The only problem I had with it, I think, is that Sawyer's love and grief for Juliet was portrayed here as so strong and all-consuming that I can't imagine the show plausibly trying to revisit the Jack/Kate/Sawyer triangle, at least in this timeline. Unless there's a point in this season where island time jumps forward a long way from this tragic moment, Sawyer's going to be too wrapped up in his feelings for Blondie to convincingly give Freckles the time of day as anything but a shoulder to cry on and an extra gun to back his play.

Juliet's death also gives the show a fresh spin on the enmity between Sawyer and Jack, and the massive, fatal failure of the Jughead plan (from this Jack's perspective, anyway) might hopefully convince Jack once and for all that things tend to go bad when he's appointed or appoints himself leader of anything. But probably not.

And speaking of leaders, we meet another of a sort in the Hiroyuki Sanada character to be named later. (Several internet sources list Hawkes' character as "Lennon," which simultaneously seems too obvious and amusing, and for simplicity's sake, I'll use that until we get in-show evidence to the contrary.) The temple Others seem culturally different from several other Others factions we've seen, styled more like hippies. (Might we find out that there are a bunch of Dharma defectors and/or their descendants among this bunch?) We've been hearing about the temple for years, and this is definitely an interesting introduction to the place.

And I see by the clock that it's now 1:06 a.m., so I better get to the bullet points before my brain shuts down. Some other thoughts:

• Well, we knew that Cindy and the kids were among the group sent to the temple back in season three, but we still hadn't seen them in all that time. Now we have. All that's left is an explanation for why they (and any other Oceanic survivors recruited into Other-dom) didn't skip around in time last year.

• Getting back to Rose and Bernard, did Jughead's detonation fling them back into the present as well, or did it only affect the time travelers who were close to its explosion?

• Alt-Sawyer has his counterpart's nicknaming gifts, as he dubs Cindy "Earhart." (While doing some prep for this season, I stumbled across this awesome YouTube collection of Sawyer nicknames and its sequel. Absolutely worth the waste of your time.)

• Bram's failed attempt to survive Smokey's attack finally gives us a good explanation for why Jacob's cabin was surrounded by that circle of ash: it, along with the Dharma sonic barrier, are the only things that seem able to repel the monster.

• Still more explanations: the guitar case Jacob gave Hurley contained not a guitar, but a wooden ankh with a fortune hidden inside.

• We may not have gotten Shannon, or Mr. Eko, or some of the other awesome Oceanic survivors in this one, but we got Arzt! And Frogurt! Both as annoying as ever!

• Good to see Kate's tree-climbing skills are still intact even after a time-jump.

• Also good to know that at least Hurley is the one Oceanic survivor who didn't become a firearms expert shortly after landing on the island (or at any point after).

• Was glad to see that the Miles/LaFleur friendship wasn't quickly forgotten now that we're away from the Dharma days.

• "You're the monster." "Let's not resort to name-calling." Funny funny stuff from the Emerson/O'Quinn duo there.

• Claire makes her first appearance in more than a year, and I hope we finally revisit (in one timeline or the other) the matter of what will happen with Aaron's horrible destiny. And speaking of underserviced characters, I'd really like to see Sun return to prominence this year, now that most of the characters are now back on the island at the same time.

Okay, that's enough out of me. What did everybody else think?

190 comments:

Patrick said...

I reviewed it here. The short take is I really dug most of the island stuff, but felt like the alt-verse, while interesting conceptually was boring in execution, recalling many bad flashbacks of yore. I'm giving it a chance to see where it goes, but if it's an excuse to tell more flashback style of stories of characters messing up their lives, I'm not looking forward to that.

Still, there was plenty here to satisfy, and I can't wait for next week.

jasctt said...

Really tired tonight, but just a few thoughts:

-The Swayer/Juliet stuff seems really redundant after the gutwrenching ending of last year's season finale. would anything be different if it had just ended her story there?

-Frankly, i thought that Locke was going to wake up when the sun came up (he's the guy actually lying in the shadow of the statue) and walt, last season, told John that in his vision, he saw John wearing a suit, on the beach, surrounded by people wanting to hurt him. I am assuming this will still come to pass.

-More Others? While it was cool to see the temple, even if it was straight out of APOCALYPSE NOW, i really hope this is the last of new cast members. Honestly, the last thing this show needs is a larger cast.

-I'm still not sure about this alternate reality where the plane lands safely. Will this go on all season/ will the story link up at some point? time will tell, I guess.

-Is that all we are seeing of Charlie this season? I was hoping he'd be back alive on the island and not just on the plane. Oh well...

-I still have faith Lindelof/Cuse cause they kick ass and I give the first 2 hours a solid A but I am really hoping they can keep it together.

-Again, Locke is the soul of the show for me and if he is truly dead and NEVER comes back to life, I think the show will be the worst for it. Still, terry O Quinn is the man.

joshjs said...

"It worked."

This implies to me that maybe the presumed "alternate timeline" we're seeing isn't alternate at all. That we're seeing flashbacks to a new timeline created by the bomb, and that those flashbacks will eventually lead to the characters finding their way to the island and eventually back into the same predicament they're in now.

The universe has a way of course correcting.

(I cross-posted this theory at the AV Club. Hope you don't mind, Alan.)

davidswinney said...

As always, a good review, Alan. One note, the title of the episode was "LA X," with the blank space being intentional, as pointed out by Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse on Jimmy Kimmel last night.

Alan Sepinwall said...

So they did, David. I have adjusted.

James said...

I know you dislike Jack Alan, but there is a very good chance that that Jughead isn't the only reason the island sank.

Greg said...

I definitely don't think the 2007 timeline is coming after the plan to reset things "didn't work," but rather, the bomb worked and this is just the continuation of the original timeline which isn't going to disappear just because a new timeline was created.

I found myself growing impatient during the plane/LAX scenes, waiting to get back to the island. I hope it's not the focus in coming weeks.

Another possible difference in the alternate universe: Sawyer seems in relatively good spirits, something that seems unlikely if it was following the events in Australia in the original timeline.

Lester Freamon said...

"All that's left is an explanation for why they (and any other Oceanic survivors recruited into Other-dom) didn't skip around in time last year. "

My theory on that is that the kidnapped Tailies were on "The List" so after they were taken, they got to go straight to the Temple. In the Temple, they went through the same process that gave Rousseau's people "The Sickness", and took Ben's innocence. Whatever that was, it bound them to the Island. Juliet, because they only brought her to the Island to fix the fertility problem, did not go through the same indoctrination program, so was able to time travel.

Ben said...

My head is spinning, but overall I liked it. I think...yes, I was entertained.

So I think alternate time lines. The arrival at the airport showing us what would have happened-ish (i.e. no Shannon) will eventually lead the Oceanic 815's back the island because "Whatever happened, happened".

Really need to think about it. Alal, its impressive that you were able to process all that so quickly.

By the way, my favorite part and perhaps the saddest as well, was one MIB was talking about Locke, his last thought, his pathetic life. I really liked that character and it is hard to hear that about someone you care about, fake or otherwise, especially when you feel invested in them. Great acting by Terry O'Quinn, wow.

ScottyG said...

good to see Cindy back in the picture

David J. Loehr said...

One thing that's intriguing is this idea of the split/alternate timeline, considering Lindelof's involvement in crafting the story for the latest "Star Trek" film. In this iteration, it looks like we'll get to see a little more direct cause and effect, reflection and distortion between the two timelines, if that is in fact what it is.

J.J. said...

My take wasn't the "Sliding Doors" thing at all, with both possibilities playing out. I think the 2004 timeline is dependent on what's about to happen in the 2007 timeline.

At first I was assuming one of the stories would, at the end of the 2-hour premier, be revealed to be nothing but the feverish dreaming of somebody who is on death's door (like Sayid, or whoever).

But with Juliet claiming it worked, I think it'll turn out that setting off the bomb initiated some chain of events that ultimately re-sets everything. I think the 2007 timeline will culminate with some big action (like killing the smoke monster) that somehow undoes everything so they're back on the plane that lands in LA right where the season 6 2004 timeline kicked off tonight.

Savvy Veteran said...

I like your theory, joshjs, and it could very well be right, but it does seem odd to me that they don't suddenly "remember" it, like Desmond did in the present after Faraday knocked on the back door to the hatch last season in his past.

It seems like it has something to do with them being dead (or almost dead); Miles seemed pretty spooked by what Sayid's ghost/near ghost told him (which, of course, was unheard by us), in addition to his hearing Juliet say "it worked." Does dying somehow transport you back to the alternate timeline?

Good episode, though, and great review as always, Alan.

Ben said...

Also, now Jack, Kate, Hurley and the other time traveling Losties are "on a list".

Fernando said...

I really thought the 2004 stuff was a cheat until that scene with Locke and Jack toward the end. If Lost does nothing else this season but have Jack try to make Locke walk again (successful or not) i think ill be happy. That gives me hope that the 2004 stuff will be interesting and give us some ammo for the destiny/free will argument.

Haven't not seen the first season in forever, it was an exercise in trying to remember how these people were back then (i.e. that sun and jin aren't in love anymore).

Good stuff. "Nothing is irreversible". Frontrunner for my new favorite line of the series.

Jon said...

Guesses:

-Sayid at the end is, in my opinion, definitely not Sayid. Last season Sayid was brought on the island by Ilana who we now know works for Jacob. I'm pretty sure that Jacob planned on his body being killed and him taking over Sayid's, which would explain his note.

-Desmond on the plane wasn't the result of a different life without the island. He was are regular Desmond but now with the ability to travel through dimensions (which he may have always had). This would make him the constant that brings the two timelines together and it would explain his appearance and disappearance as more than just an obnoxious seat neighbor.
Furthermore, we could have been seeing many alternate timelines in the past in regards to Desmond. His visions of Charlie's death could be alternate dimensions instead of futures he stopped. And the flashback that Jack had in season 2 where he meets Desmond could actually be an alternate timeline Desmond. That sounds crazy, but it would explain why Jack recognized Desmond later in that episode but not the other way around.

-If Desmond brings the timelines together, my theory for the end of the show now has real Locke defeating fake Locke in the end and becoming the hero he always thought he could be. Why would they have a villain so thoroughly s**t on a main character (the whole "confusion at death" monologue) if it wasn't leading to a satisfying redemption.

-If the Man in Black is Smokey, then that picture we saw last season of Smokey staring down Anubis could lead us to believe that Jacob is Anubis. What does that mean? Beats me. Anyone good on Egyptian mythology?

-And the theory my friend told me years ago that I still believe: the island is Atlantis. My friend called it and I still think he's gonna be right.

ps. The funniest thing is I don't really even like this show. I hate every character except Locke and Farraday and I think the dialogue is attrocious ("I'm seeing this but...I'm still not believing it" "Excuse me, ma'am, but for no good reason I, a flight attendant you've never met, am going to ask you if you speak English for no reason other than lazy writing" Ugh). It's just fun to talk about and I can't stop watching.

Kensington said...

I love the alternate timeline. That's a development I never saw coming, and although I had initial reservations about how interesting it could possibly be, by the end, it was fascinating to see how the various Lostaways were finding new ways to get tangled with each other.

And it means that John Locke isn't dead!

I also appreciated Sayid musing about the likelihood of facing some sort of post-death damnation as he came nearer to dying.

Dave Sandell said...

I enjoyed most of the episode, although I'm not sure how invested to get in the crashless timeline. It was fun and I can see how it will color the crashed timeline, but with only 18 hours to tell the story... I don't want one wasted crashless scene.

Bullet points:
- Loved that John might be saved by science in the crashless timeline
- Assuming that was a version of Jacob's list, weren't we previously told that Jack wasn't on the list? And if it's about who he touched, etc, why is Miles not being killed by other others right now? (not that I want him to)

- When Miles said "nothing" to Hurley, did he mean he couldn't hear anything and that means Sayid wasn't dead, or did he hear something and didn't want to share it?

- I still don't understand who sent John to the island. Seemed like Jacob via the touch, Widmore via Abbadon, Esau via everything, and some version of Richard via the off-island visits.

- Also, if the island sunk, was Jacob still around to touch Locke and (seemingly) bring him back to life? Or was he not dead when he hit the ground?

- Finally, what are we to make of Eloise and Widmore's motivation in making sure everything happened the way it happened (vis a vis sending Dan back in time) in the timeline where the bomb didn't reset?

- I'm open to Locke/MIB/Esau being the good guy in this story. That might be my Locke homerism, but I want to hear his side of the story, because I'm not convinced Jacob was a good guy either, despite seeming more benevolent.

Anonymous said...

We can't say for sure what Juliet was planning to tell Sawyer in that moment under the wreckage, but my guess (based on what Miles gets from her after she's buried) is that as she was dying, the part of her that was in 2007 was being reunited with her off-island self in 2004, and so she was trying to communicate that Jack's plan had worked.

Seems to me that when you die in 2007, you become whole again three years earlier.

Kensington said...

Oh, and I, too, was glad to see the return of Cindy. She's always been my favorite ancillary Lostaway for some reason, and it's nice to see she wasn't forgotten.

Michael said...

Lindelof & Cuse were guests on the Jimmy Kimmel show later Tuesday night. I hope the segment is posted later; they had some good insight into why things happened they way they did - seeming inconsistencies like Jack's liquor bottles and Rose's and Jack's attitudes were all intentional, and the title being "LA X" with a space between the A and the X.

They apparently unintentionally dropped a spoiler bomb about Sayid (which I won't repeat), too.

Nightline also had a story where they interviewed O'Quinn and Garcia, and took Jorge into the prop room where the narrator said that every single object that anyone held is stored (they showed Kate's toy plane, Sawyer's wired-together glasses, the Hawaiian-shirt golf hole marker, Eko's Jesus stick, among others). They mentioned that after the show, all props would be offered for sale with proceeds going to charity.

fgmerchant said...

Alan, about Jughead being responsible for sinking the island, this quote from an EW.com interview is relevant:

Did Jughead really sink the Island? And is it possible that the Sideways characters are now caught in a time loop in which they might have to go back in time and fulfill the obligation to continuity by detonating the bomb?

LINDELOF: These questions will be dealt with on the show. Should you infer that the detonation of Jughead is what sunk the island? Who knows? But there’s the Foot. What do you get when you see that shot? It looks like New Otherton got built. These little clues [might help you] extrapolate when the Island may have sunk. Start to think about it. A couple of episodes down the road, some of the characters might even discuss it. We will say this: season 6 is not about time travel. It’s about the implications, the aftermath, and the causality of trying to change the past. But the idea of continuing to do paradoxical storytelling is not what we’re interested in this year.

SOURCE: http://popwatch.ew.com/2010/02/02/lost-premiere-damon-carlton/

Savvy Veteran said...

Jon @ 1:49 AM:

Another silly line of dialogue: Hurley's [paraphrased] declaration that: "Nothing bad ever happens to me. I'm the luckiest guy alive"—apparently included in the episode only to make the audience say "Wow! That's not the Hurley I'm familiar with!"—and not because it is a logical response to Sawyer's bit of advice.

Scott said...

When I started reading this, there were 5 comments, by the time I was done, 23. Most of you said what I was going to say. I dug the premiere. It was entertaining. I am not so sure about the plane landing time, but seeing Desmond on the plane, and then him dashing off, was a nice surprise.

I had 1 big problem. 1998 wants it's animation back with that opening underwater sequence. It looked pretty bad

Jon said...

Although I felt the plane/lax scenes were a bit forced, I'll give this parallel universe format the benefit of the doubt and trust it will all work out.

Main question on the island: how did Juliet know it worked?

Favorite scene by far was the MiB/fake Locke/smoke monster reveal. We're getting answers! The implications from this make me feel the impossible: sympathy for ben. He's been even more of a puppet than we realized

Devin McCullen said...

One thing that came into my head: If they resolve the Jack/Kate/Sawyer triangle by having one Kate wind up with Jack & the other with Sawyer, that's the biggest copout ever. (And I don't even care about that plotline.)

Overall, though, it was great.

Nathan said...

After reading some comments, in particular about Desmond and why he is on the plane...if this is an alternate timeline, created after the main one was reset, and due to the possibility that the island was sank when the bomb detonated and whole lot of people died...there's a good chance Farraday was never born in the new reset timeline, and most likely neither was Penny, since both Eloise and Widmore would've died when the island sank. If we follow that concept, then basically, the new timeline is all that would(does?) happen to the "Losties" if they were never influenced by people from the island. So, Desmond, could be there, simply due to the lack of influence from the island/Others. Then again, it's Lost...who knows! Hope this isn't sound confusing. Great review Alan!

J said...

As the flashback possibilities had, for established characters, exhausted themselves, and as we'd caught up to the period of the flashforwards, I like the idea of the flashsidewayses. Actually, when they went back to the explosion again at the start of the second act, I thought they might spend the whole first hour rebooting with *every* act, creating five alternate realities. But I'm okay with Lost and Lost-X as long as they find a way to reconcile the two plotlines in a meaningful way.

Since Desmond started 'hopping, I've been concerned about this show going into alternate realities. But I think the audience is familiar enough with events and characters enough to follow this whole other level as long as it's presented as distinct and, again, as long as it bears some serious relationship to the "main" storyline.

I was a little miffed that Sawyer and Juliet had to replay their goodbye. It was more tender and intimate, obviously, and they're two of the best actors onthe show. But I felt the whole don't-you-let-go thing was a stronger ending to that.

Was it me, or were there like a gazillion commercials? The show came back from break at 8:30 and then went to another break at 8:35. It's like "Commercials... brought to you by Lost."

Not sold on bansai master, the bubbling pool, and the fireworks house yet. But love that Terry O'Quinn gets to be evil for a while.

J said...

there's a good chance Farraday was never born in the new reset timeline, and most likely neither was Penny, since both Eloise and Widmore would've died

Nooooooooooo! I need Desmond to be with Penny, even if it's Desmond-X and Penny-X. All Desmonds must be with all Pennys. Anything else is unacceptable.

Jon said...

@Savvy Veteran - Ha! I forgot about that one. I have a feeling that the differences in this season will be written with the same sledgehammer subtlety as some of the coincidences in the early seasons.

My favorite odd writing choice of the night though, was them setting up Kate's theft of Jack's pen in three separate scenes and then she doesn't even get to use it!

dez said...

I was really hating the new STAR TREK tack they were taking and feeling it was a huge cheat, but by the end, I was back to "This is so teh Awesome." Like you, I care about the people on the island, not the people they would have been had fate not brought down their plane. I hope this fits into the time loop stuff Faraday was talking about last season.

-And the theory my friend told me years ago that I still believe: the island is Atlantis. My friend called it and I still think he's gonna be right.


One of my friends is also calling it Atlantis. I'm calling it Hell. Heh. I want to know where MIB calls "home." And I think Sayid is now Jacob. Or Jacob is now Sayid. However it works on Craphole Island.

dez said...

Actually, when they went back to the explosion again at the start of the second act, I thought they might spend the whole first hour rebooting with *every* act, creating five alternate realities.

This is all too "Crisis on Infinite Earths" for me. I don't want The Flash to die again! :-)

Jo said...

Technically the plan wasn't Jack's -- it was Faraday's. And while the character might annoy you, Jack's main fault is trying to find reasonable solutions in a completely irrational world. Okay, so detonating a hydrogen bomb to reboot a timeline isn't exactly "rational" but at that point they had already traveled through time, so why wouldn't Jack listen to an Oxford educated physicist who believed he could save them all?

F-Train said...

There definitely is some bleed-over between the 2007 timeline on the island and the 2004 timeline on the plane.

In 2007, Juliet asks Hurley out for coffee right before she dies. At first it seems like that's just the addled brain of someone on death's door, but later we learn that she is lucid enough to try to tell Sawyer that Jack's plan worked.

In 2004, Jack saves Charlie from choking on the plane. Charlie's response: "You should have let that happen man. I was supposed to die."

Supposed to die? Trying to kill himself via choking on a half-swallowed a condom of heroin? Not likely. More likely -- a strange reference to his death via drowning in an earlier season.

Derek said...

Two words: Schrodinger's cat.

In the original experiment thought experiment, the cat is both alive and dead until it is observed. In Lost, the Jughead plan both worked and did not work.

It's brilliant. I can't wait to see what happens next.

jeeem said...

John Hawkes could be the cousin of Dennis Hopper in "Apocalypse Now." And Locke could be the temple's Kurtz/Brando. Is that his "home"?

Is Aaron going to somehow turn out to be Jacob? I can't escape the feeling there's some connection between them.

And how is Ana Lucia/Trudy going to get back from Pandora?

Lester Freamon said...

there's a good chance Farraday was never born in the new reset timeline, and most likely neither was Penny,

Penny had to have been born well before 1977, unless we are to presume that she's about 17 when she meets Desmond (who's much older) at the end of Catch 22.

Adam West said...

Originally, when Oceanic 815 crashed on the island, the plane was carrying the body of Christian Shephard. The same body that Jacob used the way that the ManInBlack then was able to use Locke's when Locke's body arrived on the island.

So if we're going with the idea that when you die on the island, you're reunited with yourself on the alternate timeline, where is Christian Shephard in 2004?

BigTed said...

Setting off the bomb didn't create a new timeline. There was already a new timeline, created when the Losties went back in time. Anything they did then could have changed the future -- it's just a question of whether the changes would be big enough to prevent the universe from course-correcting afterward. (In fact, the strange thing isn't that setting off the bomb may have created that second timeline when the plane never crashed, but that nothing they did in the past seems to have changed the present on the island that they've returned to.)

Kenrick said...

Sayid is now Jacob? I'd buy that theory.

Juliet and Charlie in two timelines when near death? Sounds plausible (in a Lost kinda way).

Jo, I'm with you on Jack. Even though he might have a savior complex, he's the most rational of the bunch and does the reasonable thing -- you know, if you assume the island is just an island and not some time-traveling nutjob. This is why I generally root for Jack, but instead the show usually makes him out to be wrong.

GabbyD said...

i laughed when boone told locke about his whole backstory in one sentence.

that backstory was worth 1 episode... see? the only thing i dont like about lost is that people are so cryptic about their pasts. whole episodes would have been avoided had they just talked to each other like normal people!

see? if only they were so forthright back in season1, season1 might have had more time to talk about other things...

GregM said...

Awesome, awesome, awesome. I guess I'm in the minority, but I was really liking the alternate time-line scenes, in part because they seemed to link up well with the main narrative.

And the good news for mythology news is that, while Damon & Carlton warned us about not answering every question, they answered several--smoke monster! Temple! Where Cindy & kids went! What happened to Ben!

Does MIB's comment to Richard indicate that Richard was not, in fact, the *Captain* of the Black Rock, as many (including me) previously presumed?

compain87 said...

I actually enjoyed the alternate universe on the plane that landed in LAX more than more than the original 2007 Universe(*), and judging by the posts before me I'm the only one. The 2004 scenes where not so much about the Lost mythology but the Lost characters. It was like going back to season one when everything wasn't as complicated. I really tried to enjoy these scenes. It was alleviating to shut off my question riddled brain and just enjoy the series I fell in love with.

(*) My suggestion is we call this alternate universe LA X, on Jimmy Kimmel Live they said that it was an error at first but they thought the title should stay that way.

The 2007 Universe scenes I felt like I was being lulled back into how I felt in Season 4 and 5(I want answers NOW). After every interaction with the Temple people(**), I wanted Hurley to just ask them "WHY" after anything they said.

(**) I really think there is a difference between the Others from New Otherton and the Others from The Temple. They seem pretty different or maybe they just have two groups one that is there to serve Jacob and another to do research. This then opens up the question why would The Temple people want to bring over Juliet to figure out how their woman can give birth? It seems like the Temple people don't need that question answered and that they have been there a lot longer than DHARMA. This is exactly why I like LA X 2004 universe more, I did not have to worry about these details on the Island and it's meticulous mythology.

It really was sad hearing Evil Locke(Esau is my favorite name for him until we find out his name) talk about Locke, it really cements the fact that this man is in no way John Locke.

It was fun seeing Locke and Jack interact with Jack wanting to help Lock. It's like they might develop some bizarro friendship.

tribalism said...

Lost’s most persistent theme has been about the ideological struggle between science and faith. In “The Incident” Jack gave himself over to faith when he pursued Faraday’s theory that the events and experiences on the Island could be erased. With no evidence presented to him that this plan actually worked, I doubt Jack will accept Miles’s sixth sense assertions from Juliet that the timeline was indeed reset. I think Jack will become even more rigid in his conviction in absolute knowledge. I just wonder who will materialize as the representation of faith now that Locke is no longer alive in this particular universe. Locke gave himself fully to the Island, and now the most notable representation of the Island—the smoke monster—has donned a Locke avatar. The struggle between Jack and (the physical manifestation of) Locke will not doubt continue, but I don’t think that Smokey-Locke will represent faith.

If you click my username, you can find a link to my blog where I go into more detail about my thoughts about the premier and the implications the events that took place will have on the season to come.

Monsters said...

I thought SmokeLocke's speech about how pathetic original Locke was was a little too harsh... way to kick a man when he's down.

Also I think Jack is being unfairly blamed, it was Faraday's plan not Jack's. Yes, Jack helped execute it but Kate and Sayid were equally complicit.

Drifter said...

I think I heard the LAX customs woman refer to Sun as "Miss Paik" and not as "Mrs. Kwon." Paik being her maiden name... did this alternate universe Jin and Sun ever get married?

RD said...

After watching the Season 3 finale (which might possibly be the best finale ever) I decided that I'm not going to question the writers anymore. I'm not going to wonder about what's "going" to happen or where the hell is everything go to lead to. I decided that I'm going to enjoy each episode for the awesomeness that it is. I have total faith in the writers and so as I watched this episode today, all I thought to myself was, how awesome LOST is. I loved the two seperate universes idea. I didn't expect to see that. I enjoyed the 2004 scenes and I loved how they changed everything so slightly. No idea where it'd lead to, and honestly, I don't care. All I know is that LA X was 2 entertaining hours of my life and the next 15 will be entertaining as well.

Anonymous said...

GregM (@3:38 AM): "I guess I'm in the minority, but I was really liking the alternate time-line scenes...."

compain87 (@3:38 AM): "I actually enjoyed the alternate universe... more than the original 2007 Universe(*), and judging by the posts before me I'm the only one."

Apparently not! A likeminded soul was simultaneously posting the same thoughts about liking the alt 2004 more than the "real" 2007, you're in luck!

Anywho, I personally loved the entire ep, both timelines/realities/whatnot, and the storytelling overall... but... the DIALOGUE, of all things. A lot of Sawyer's dialogue (in 2007) was really rubbing me the wrong way. Didn't feel like the Sawyer we'd seen evolve during season 5 (who I'd really come to like a lot)... but ah well. Can't have it all!

Robin said...

RD, I came to the exact same conclusion after seeing tonight's episode. I spent 20 minutes just trying to work out the implications of Desmond being on the plane and then decided I just want to sit back and enjoy the ride.

It was worth the wait.

Liz said...

"It's a trope of many comic book time travel stories that if you go back in time to change the past, all you do is create an alternate timeline, while the old one you wanted to change still exists. "

Ah hah. I've never read a comic book, which may be why I spent a lot of last night alternately enjoying the two storylines and wondering what in the heck was going on.

Chrissie said...

One detail I loved was the return of Greg Grunberg as the pilot of Oceanic 815, if only in VO form.

Has anyone out there on the interwebs checked to see if the other passengers were the same extras from the beach?

Chris Dokish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matt said...

Someone quoted it above, but this EW interview with Cuse and Lindelof about the premiere has a pretty good perspective on the flash-sideways: http://popwatch.ew.com/2010/02/02/lost-premiere-damon-carlton/

Anonymous said...

Re: The man in black's comment about wanting to go home...

Wasn't Lucifer (the devil) an angel at one time and he was cast out of Heaven?

Is Heaven the "home" that he is speaking about?

BF said...

- I don't think Jughead caused the Island to submerge. My candidate is the Donkey Wheel.

- Some more "echoes" of episodes past:
* the Marshall getting conked on the head.
* Jack sending someone to get a pen and then saving a live anyway.
* The red exercise bike amongst the Swan implosion.
* Dharma Shark!

- a missed opportunity: Ana Lucia's partner should have been one of the LAPD who came and arrested Charlie.

Anonymous said...

I love the LA X universe and can't wait to see what happens in it. It's just enjoyable to see these characters as they were, or akin to as they were.

Why was Charlie swallowing the heroin ballon on the plane, *after* having to go thru immigration in Australia?

If Sayid isn't jacob, he's at least got to be imbued with some Jacob-ness.

Stef said...

I totally agree with JJ and others above. The 2007 storyline will culminate in a battle that results in killing the MIB, and that's what will reset the storyline to what we started to see in LA X. There will be some differences like we've already seen - but that's how the storylines will eventually merge. I think they still have to "earn" the reset somehow, to end the cycle that Jacob and the MIB started.

At least, that's my theory. :-)

Joe Cobb said...

Did anyone else think it odd that Cindy remarked to the "lead" Other at the Temple that Jack, Sawyer, Kate etc. were from the "First Plane"?

Sure she might have been talking about Oceanic 815 vs Ajira flight 316... but it struck me much more of a "first incarnation" of Flight 815.

Blair Waldorf said...

Some random thoughts:

- If I remember correctly, Darlton has always said they are opposed to alternate timelines because, as in comic books, it creates issues about whether you can invest in the story. I am invested in 2007. I don't know yet how I feel about 2004.

- In their conversation on the beach, Jacob and the MIB talked about how people come to the island and it always ends the same. Jacob said it only ends once and everything before that is progress. This seems to indicate many, many alternate timelines, with history replaying over and over.

This same conversation also makes me think the central issue in conflict here is a free will, whether people really have free will, and what they choose to do with it. Jacob emphasized that Ben had a choice whether to kill Jacob. Jacob I think also told Hugo he could choose to go back to the island. Jacob seems optimistic for humanity. MIB does not. This sounds like an angel and a devil to me. A Paradise Lost sort of thing, where the fall of man is caused by free will but maybe that is what can save them too.

- DHARMA SHARK! Yes.

- I can't believe I had to watch Juliet die again. That killed me.

- I think 2007 Sawyer is done with Kate. And the rest of them, basically.

Sorry that was so long. I love reading all your comments. This is going to be a fun season.

Hoosier Paul said...

I know that Lost is largely a pastiche of other (often better) sci-fi and comic book stories, but seriously ... Ra's al Ghul and the Lazarus Pit? Really? Really?

Jennifer Finney Boylan said...

Here's my big question: How much awareness of the two timelines do the chracters have? Jack looked as if he knew very well who Desmond was (and I know they've met before, of course). But Jack-- unlike the other characters on the plane--seemed, to me, anyway, to be seeing his surroundings with wonder, as if he knew all too well that his being there was a miracle, and that his plan "worked."

The other characters on the plane don't seem to have that same awareness.

And what WAS that on Jack's collar in the restroom in the plane-- it looked like blood. From where? Left over from the 2004 explosion in the parallel universe? Is that what they were saying?

It doesn't seem as if anyone in 2004 has awareness of the 2007 reality (other than Juliet, R.I.P.) But does anyone in 2007 "remember" the island? Will moments of that other life intrude, somehow, into the 2007 timeline?

Was it just my imagination, or did Jack seem like he had some sort of vestigal memory of it all? Time will tell (a phrase that might well sum up this whole show.)

belinda said...

I just rewatched Primer a few days ago, so I have to say it was pretty awesome seeing the same device (as in comic books too) used in the first episode of Lost. It's pretty darn clever and a natural progress from the time traveling last season, yet somehow I didn't think of it at all in the hiatus. NICE. I think it'll be very interesting to see what the doubles will be/was? up to in between stuff on the island.

I kind of hate that they killed Juliet all over again - pretty cruel, considering it was already so sad the first time. Again? Especially with Sayid there having been half dead and bounced around in a van for half the day. You'd think they could just pack her up as well and take her to the temple too! But yes, what was that 'it worked' thing, and how did she know it did - unless she was talking about something else entirely?

Mostly, I'm surprised at how much I laughed in the episode (considering it was also full of surprises and tragedy and creepiness and suspense and, hey, some answers!) - just really well balanced between the funny and the OMGs. LOVE.

I got the impression that Sayid did get possessed by Jacob, though since I already thought of that, perhaps that won't be the case. Who knows?

Esau vs. Jacob:- Even though the lines are clearly divided into light/dark, I'm not sure if light is good just yet. We've seen Jacob coast around through time and space in and out of the island just checking in with the peeps, 'hiring' bodyguards and whatnots - and while we don't know why, Esmokey evidently cannot (if his only wish is to leave the island) all these years - god knows how long. Which is a looong time to be stuck on an island and develop murderous feelings towards someone who jets around the world with his hamster wheel.

Jennifer Finney Boylan said...

Also, can I just add: FROGURT!!! It's stupid Frogurt asleep between Hurley and Sawyer. And it's stupid Frogurt who won't let Kate into a cab.

Bloody Frogurt.

And Doc Arzt.

I wonder how many of the extras (redshirts) on the plane in this episode are the SAME EXTRA from seasons 1 and 2, etc.

Also: Have always been mad at that Cindy. Never forgaver her for her sneering "it's complicated" to Jack in the polar bear cage. The idea, I guess, is that some of the people on the plane, including Cindy and the Kidz, were so special they deserved to join the "others" cult.

But if Hurley and Sawyer and Jack and Kate and Sayid--and everybody-- has not proved their "specialness," their amazing fortitude and courage over the last five years, I don't know the meaning of the words. What has Cindy ever done to make her so special? Give Jack a free vodka?

Matt said...

Did anyone else think it odd that Cindy remarked to the "lead" Other at the Temple that Jack, Sawyer, Kate etc. were from the "First Plane"?

I think she definitely meant Oceanic 815 vs Ajira 316

Paul said...

Hugh Everett III continues to rule pop culture from the grave. The Many Worlds Theory has really been getting a workout in the last year and a half thanks to shows like Lost, Flash-Forward, Fringe, Heroes, Sarah Connor, and the new Star Trek movie. Alternate realities have been a staple of sci-fi for a long time, but it's really "hot" right now.

Anonymous said...

The dramatic scene where Locke roughs up Richard, who proceeds to fall and kind of went into a ball on the ground was strangely hilarious.

Anonymous said...

I may be mixing up stories in my mind, but didn't Hurley win the lottery by playing the numbers, which he had heard at the mental institution?

So in the Sideways reality, if the hatch was never built, the numbers were never used as the code and they have no significance (as far as we know). Did Hurley win with different numbers (which might suggest that Hurley was just, in fact, lucky)? Did the numbers come from somewhere else? Or was the hatch still built & there's more to the story?

Toeknee said...

I agree with those that pointed out the various instances of poor dialogue/writing, not only in this episode but frequently throughout the series.

But one line that I thought was spot on (and hilarious) was Hurley's "Oh God that's gross" as Sayid lay there coughing up blood. Usually in those scenes, the companion of the dying person is either overly heroic (like Jack usually tries to be) or very emotional (like Sawyer was with Juliet) or trying to comfort the dying person. If it were me, my reaction would be closest to Hurley's.

Irish Stoo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Irish Stoo said...

Does it feel as if Lost and Fringe are mining the same type of story line?

Anonymous said...

Quantum superposition of states might be one angle to explore.

The famous http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schr%C3%B6dinger%27s_cat Schrodinger' Cat thought experiment is an example - until the event is observed (and aren't we all just "observing" Lost) the cat exists in two states - dead and alive - simultaneously. It's only on observation that the states collapse into one fixed reality - dead or alive.

If you think about Jacob and MIB's conversation - that it doesn't matter how many ways things play out - there's only one end - and until that it doesn't matter, the superposition makes sense. In a way, multiple realities are concurrently playing out until they converge and collapse into one fixed reality - where - in Jacob's case - humanity is found worthy - and in the MIB's case - humanity is a squalid mess.

KeepingAwake said...

I really did try to read all of the comments, but everyone has had quite a bit to say! Sorry if I am repeating what others have said. I've tried not to post things others already mentioned.

-When Sayid was suddenly revived and seemed as though he might be Jacob, I remembered Ilana's question to Bram last year about Lapidus and whether he was The Candidate. Did they anticipate the need for The Candidate because they assumed that Jacob was in mortal danger? How many bodies has Jacob (and the MiB for that matter) inhabited over time? Just how long has this struggle been underway?
-"I was just so happy to be reminded of when I liked Jack"--I blurted coffee all over the computer! It's so true. We did used to like Jack and think Locke's patient wisdom might be the only thing to save these
people from themselves. Funny how times have changed.
-Since we now know the Island ends up underwater at some point, does the drowning ritual in the Temple in some way prepare the selected Others to survive that situation?
-Only Michael Emerson could deliver a nonsensical line like "You're the Monster" in a way that makes it appear not only like a reasonable thing to say, but also with 5 different simultaneous emotions.

Local Neighbor said...

To follow-up on the quantum angle - each version of a character - like Jack - could be "entangled" with all their alternatives. Given that, they each "share" quantum states which bleed over and allow them to perceive at some level their alternative selves.

The exception, of course, being Desmond, who exists as a singularity within the quantum framework of states. There's only one Desmond operating across multiple parallel (and given the time difference) converging realities.

In the end, the observers (us) will collapse the alternatives to one final reality (there's only one end, as Jacob notes).

Jen said...

Initially, I was more annoyed by the alt-timeline, but gradually I warmed to it as well. But it was when MIB/Locke gave that absolutely devastating summation of who Locke was that I immediately switched to being in favor of the new Sliding Doors device. We've seen these characters for so long in the process of surviving on the Island, that if we hadn't recently seen the Pilot or eps from the first season we might have completely forgotten how nonsensical it was for them to want to go home in the first place.

It's going to take another viewing before I can adequately process all the info, but first reaction: Damn.

The CineManiac said...

I think my favorite theory on what will happens relies on something Faraday apparently said last season (It was pointed out by a user on The Fuselage)
When describing his plan Faraday said that time is like a Stream. If you throw a rock in the stream it will be altered in one of two ways. If the rock (or bomb in this case) is big enough the stream's course will be altered completely, but if the rock isn't big enough it will simply split the stream in two that will eventually re-converge.
So I think at some point this season we're going to see the two alternate timelines meet up together in some way.
Can't wait to see what happens.

Also, no way the island is "atlantis" that's lame and anyone could have guessed that years ago. Not gonna happen.

Anonymous said...

I still think of Daniel Roebuck ( Arzt) as Jay Leno whenever I see him. Maybe they should have a remake of "Late Shift".

JR said...

Something I found interesting: When Esau walks off with Richard Alpert over his shoulder, the camera pans down to Original Recipe Locke's body and travels up towards Locke's face.

It looks as if he's smiling, almost smugly, as if he knows something we don't.

Whether that's just the work of the mortician, or a sign of things to come... who knows?

BF said...

One nitpick: If you're going to do an hour recap show, do we REALLY need a "Previously, on LOST" bit to open the episode proper? After watching Juliet bang away with that rock for the 3rd time in 8 minutes, I too was saying "Come on, you son of a bi...!"

RLB said...

Were we really supposed to interpret Hurley's comment on the plane about "being the luckiest guy alive" as fact? I interpreted it as sarcasm - did anyone else?

LDP said...

I really enjoyed it, but I hope what we're seeing on island is not under water; there's only so much nonsense I can take.

Yet, if they are underwater, then I know who the island's true mastermind is. I won't spoil it, but let's just say he's yellow and square, and may very well live in a pineapple.

Kent said...

I could be remembering wrong, but I thought there was a ring of ash around the sonic fence which would give an alternate explanation to why the smoke pinged off when it hit the line. When I saw one of Jacob's soldiers put down the Winchester-style circle (for those watching Supernatural) it popped into my head that it had been there. I've watched the last couple of seasons over the previous month. Been a lot longer since I watched the first three so I could be imagining things, though.

KeepingAwake said...

Kent, my recollection is that we've only previously seen the circle of ash around Jacob's cabin. I don't recall ever seeing it used in conjunction with the sonic fence.

Christopher said...

I'm hopeful that Sayid is not Jacob, and Sayid is just Sayid; and that Jacob will use dead Locke's body much the same way he used Christian's body, and we'll see Light Locke vs. Dark Locke (and just let Terry Quinn act the hell out of the show.)

also very curious as to where (and in what state) Christian is in 2004.

Anonymous said...

Has it been confirmed that Jacob and Christian are tied together? Personally, I thought Christian = Locke = MIB = Smoke Monster has been pretty clear since the Season 5 finale.

Loren said...

One nitpick: If you're going to do an hour recap show, do we REALLY need a "Previously, on LOST" bit to open the episode proper?

I felt the same way at first, and then remembered that a fair share of the audience probably didn't watch the recap hour. They deserved a "Previously..." as well.

Laurel said...

I don't love the alt timeline that we have seen so far. I hope we get to see what Widmore is up to since he has been looking for the island since he got kicked off in the 50's, so would he know that it sunk in the 70's or is he still searching?

I am so much more invested in what is going on with the island. Unless the ATL is really good in the crazy surprising island good way that we are so accustomed to from Lost, I feel like I might be disappointed. That being said (oh yes I did!), I trust the writers to make it work.

I hope the temple people, especially the leaders turn out to be minor characters. I just don't know if I want to have to care about the who's, why's, how's etc of even more characters.

I am thinking that this is going to be Sayid's shot at redemption. At least in his own mind. Whether he becomes possessed by Jacob, or just a renewed sense of life, I think we will see him take on the role of the "good" force on the island.

All in all, I like where this is going. At this point I think our choices are between an infinite time loop - the bomb worked so they never crashed so they never stopped the incident so the plane crashed ad infinitum, and an alternate time line. I choose the alt time line theory and hope that there is some resolution to.

And I hope Christian's body being lost in the atl is more than just a vehicle for Jack to meet Locke.

Anonymous said...

The "nothing is irreversible" scene is great. I just watched it again to confirm my original feeling, which is that Jack surprised himself by saying that. It felt much more man-of-faithy than Jack's stubborn determination to fix everything that we saw in the "original" timeline.

Groups said...

Thought it was interesting when Not John Locke said about real Locke (paraphrasing) he was only one who wanted to stay here rather then get back to their pathetic lives. Don't Rose and Bernard want to stay on the island too? Could they be next constant?

ShayDetta said...

Since Alt Locke hasn't seen Richard since he was "in chains" I think Richard might have been on that slave ship they found in season one.

BF said...

I thought Christian = Locke = MIB = Smoke Monster has been pretty clear since the Season 5 finale.

That's only one episode ago.

Andrew said...

The one lingering question I have from last season is why do Jack, Hurley, Kate and Sayid time travel back to 1977 like Sawyer, Jin, Juliet, Dan and Miles, while Sun and Lapidus stay rooted in 2007 with Ben, Ilana and the Shadow of the Statue crew. Ben, we can assume, like the Others is fixed with the island, but why are Sun and Frank prevented from skipping through time?

Terry O'Quinn playing both 2004 Locke against Matthew Fox's Jack and 2007 Esau/Smokey/notLocke against MIchael Emerson/Ben is made of win.

Ben said...

Another slight twist in behavior in the "alternate" time line part...When Hurley tells Artz he won the lottery, Sawyer tells him he shouldn't tell that folks that cause some will try to take advantage of him.

The original Sawyer we have grown to love would have tried to take Hurley for all the coin he could.

Now, he didn't rat out Kate when she was in the elevator so maybe he isn't 100% good guy or anything, but...

Anonymous said...

That's only one episode ago.

Well yeah, but I thought that one episode made it clear some 9 months ago, and last night's just confirmed it.

Anonymous said...

Andrew-I can see why Lapidus might not have traveled in time as he was not part of the Oceanic 815 flight; the island didn't call him there. Dan and Miles just happened to be there when the time travel jumps started. Sun is a different matter and the only thing different about her is that she became pregnant on the island. Could that have given her some kind of immunity from time travel?

Bix said...

It was explicitly stated by Darlton in the recap aired before "The Incident" that the 316ers were sent to 2 different time periods because they didn't recreate the circumstances of 815 as well as they were supposed to. As Ellie warned, that could make things unpredictable.

Anonymous said...

Two thoughts:
-Esau/MIB saying "I haven't seen you since you were in chains". I think that was metaphorical in the sense that he considered his "service" to Jacob bondage.

-I like the rock in the water convergence analogy. I think the 2004 folks that landed will have to return to the island (like Season 4). If the title of the episode is any indication the "ten" would be: Jack, Locke, Sawyer, Kate, Hurley, Sun, Jin, Sayid, Claire and Christian's body (opening the loophole for Jacob).

Anonymous said...

"Another slight twist in behavior in the "alternate" time line part...When Hurley tells Artz he won the lottery, Sawyer tells him he shouldn't tell that folks that cause some will try to take advantage of him.

The original Sawyer we have grown to love would have tried to take Hurley for all the coin he could. "

I took that in the opposite way. A con man would need to gain the confidence of the target before making a move. Sawyer now knows that Hurley won the lottery and where he works (and that Hurley believes that nothing bad can happen to him). I'd expect that in an episode or two, Sawyer shows up at the restaurant to visit his new 'friend'.

dez said...

Has anyone out there on the interwebs checked to see if the other passengers were the same extras from the beach?

Arzt was obvious, and Frogurt a little more hidden. Didn't notice if Steve and Scott or any of the other red shirts were there. Definitely did not see Nikki & Paolo!

J.J. said...

I think Sun didn't travel back to the '70s because she wasn't supposed to be there on that 2nd flight. Locke promised Jin he wouldn't try to convince her to come back. So she really shouldn't have been there, except Ben took it upon himself to get her anyway.

Anonymous said...

RD, I completely agree with you. I just enjoy the ride more so then the speculation. I still enjoy wondering what will happen but only for 5 minutes or so.


One question, are the losties in the future or did they just flashback to a present day? I wasn't sure if I heard right that the hatch was remade...?

Alan Sepinwall said...

Along similar lines, did Jack or anyone else ever get into the tail section of the plane? Should we just assume that Ana-Lucia and Libby and the others weren't there, or did we just not have a chance to see into that area?

Allison DeWitt said...

Although this episode didn't exactly blow my mind like the original pilot, I loved the subtle changes for things to mull over.

Jack had one extra drink, not two, and didn't gulp it. He didn't follow Cindy's exit with a bit of a flirtatious look. He was right for once in his life on a prediction that the plane would be OK.

Whatever nitpicking I might have..Terry O'Quinn is amazing. Weak Locke, Strong Locke, Kickass NotLocke..he can do it all and a command a scene just by leaning into the light.

"I'm sorry you had to see me like that."...we may be using that quote forever.

"Nothing is irreversible". ..might be if Jack can be correct, one more time.

I don't know if it's supposed to mean something, but it was interesting to see a reprise of the pilot's opening scene..a close up on an eyelid, then an eye. This time is was Kate, at night, in a tree.

Hurley was decidedly cheery so he was making it up or his back story was different. I agree Sawyer seemed different, also..as if his past actions changed.

Kate was more of a mess than ever. So some people changed for the better..apparently, some did not. Jin and Sun were still in an icy marriage, and her pause and expression suggested she could speak English and didn't choose to .

I still have hopes for the "real" Locke's fate..and more Desmond, please. With Penny, of course.

P@ said...

So was Claire on 815, or was she just in Kate's taxi?
Also missing - WAAAALT and Michael. And of course, Vincent. Hrm.

My theory - Jacob is Fate. The 2007 timeline shows what is *supposed* to happen. The 2004 (or "X" timeline) shows what happens when people have free will. (Shannon chose not to get on the plane, for example.)

I don't know if my theory is correct, and there are certainly details that need to be filled in (what exactly is Smokey/MIB, if Jacob is Fate?) but that's what the writers are for.

Matter-Eater Lad said...

Could the 2004' characters be different because Jacob never touched them this time around?

KeepingAwake said...

Alan, about the tailsection, maybe look at it this way:

If Jughead detonated in 1977, we'd be looking at nearly 30 years worth of new timeline by the time Oeeanic 815 was wheels up. We just happened to begin exploring the new timeline on board Oceanic 815.

There should have been a lot of changes to the entire world by 2004 because the bomb would have changed many things. The show makes us initially think of the bomb's effects in the context of 815 because that's what the characters most wanted to change, but the bomb's ramifications would be much wider in scope.

Just as turning the failsafe key brought a thousand kinds of trouble upon them, rather than simply stopping the electromagnetic pulse.

KeepingAwake said...

Hit Publish too soon!

I'm assuming at least some of the Tailies weren't there due to unforeseen ramifications of sparking a new timeline with the detonation of Jughead.

Blair Waldorf said...

I am definitely thinking at least some of the Tailies are, you know, in the tail of the plane, and we just didn't see them yet. I'd love to see Ana Lucia again. I am expecting to see Libby.

Anonymous said...

Already plenty of reviews to agree with, and some very good detailed speculation (agreed wrt Richard's "chains" as metaphor for example, and the nice catch on Sun as a free-radical factor in Jacob/MIB's quantum chess game.) So just some semi-random thoughts:

Not Hell, I don't think, but I would definitely buy Purgatory, a Purgatory that's become a petri dish of selected humanity hooked into some larger design. (Which would make practical sense of the unsubtle "welcome to Archetype Island!" character development of Season 1. If these are characters in a mystery play that's played for keeps, that would actually matter.)

Also the Atlantis angle may have some merit, since that's a more flexible myth than we sometimes credit (Tolkien mined it for straight-up theology with Numenor, for example. I figure the Lost writers can find an angle if they want to.)

Glad to see so many folks already there with Schrodinger's cat, too. Of course Douglas Adams' view of that was that the cat finally got tired of being gassed and not gassed at the same time, and snuck out to find some tuna.

I do hope Dead!Locke was smiling. Someone in the TV scifi community needs to develop a pilot with Terry O'Quinn and Michael Hogan. And they both need to wear eyepatches, for the awesome.

dez said...

Not Hell, I don't think, but I would definitely buy Purgatory, a Purgatory that's become a petri dish of selected humanity hooked into some larger design.

Except Darlton has explicity said the island is not Purgatory. Not that they haven't been disingenuous before, but I believe them on this one.

BF said...

I took that in the opposite way. A con man would need to gain the confidence of the target before making a move.

Exactly. Two words: Long Con.

Brendan McCarthy said...

I, too, am with J.J. and a few others who feel the two timelines will converge after some epic battle/climax on the island resolves everything. I would be extremely happy if the on-island show ended in with a loud bang while the off-island show ends quietly -- perhaps with a Jack/Kate or Jack/Locke scene a la "Eternal Sunshine f the Spotless Mind." Maybe they don't fully recognize each other off-island, but the characters are so intertwined and drawn to each other that they would end up together without even knowing why. It's simply an instinctual feeling -- a mix of choice and destiny.

I LOVED the off-island Jack/Locke scene at the end, and would love to see this play out.

I guess all in all I, too, am in the minority who felt the off-island stuff was more interesting. I did enjoy the island scenes, but -- and not to knock the show, I know it's TV and you have to be quick/cheap -- the island sets and FX sometimes take me out of the show. When the focus is the characters I'm fully invested. They can still do trippy/creepy episodes without any FX or very fake looking temples.

Brendan McCarthy said...

Blah. Had to minimize screen multiple times during my post so the boss wouldn't see what I was doing. Please ignore all the typos.

Jon said...

One thing that I'm not annoyed about: the introduction of new Others. Not only do I like the actors, but I was really concerned last season when all the characters we thought knew what was going on (Richard, Eloise) were shown to have learned much of it from our main characters back in time which just created a massive loop of misinformation. The Temple Others seem to actually have a clue and I think the story needs people like that.

One thing I AM annoyed by: I don't think we're ever getting answers about Walt.
The creators have implied he's done in interviews and the recap and 2004 scenes tonight were constructed in a way that glossed over him ever being there. I'm sorry though, I can't forget about that thread, mostly because 80% of the entire first two seasons were all about how important he is! Make him the conduit for Jacobs body! Do anything! It's your world, writers, so bend the rules and get him back on! Because, if you don't, that's gonna be the biggest thing that makes the show feel like a shaggy dog mess instead of a cohesive whole.

pbrl said...

Do we have any theories as to why Jack's neck was cut? My friend thinks its because when the timeline was "reset" or whatever, the bodies of the people were physically thrown back. So even though its 2004, they are in the bodies of the 1977 people. That's why Jack looks so beat up, and when he looks in the mirror he has a strange look on his face.

I guess this theory will be tested when we see if Claire is pregnant...

pbrl said...

What I loved was how many lines had little fun meanings to them. Charlie saying "I was supposed to die", the epic "Nothing's irreversible". There were others I can't remember right now.

There were also visual callbacks. For example, Jack trying to revive Sayid with Kate next to him saying "he's gone" - a copy of season 1 when they revived Charlie after Ethan hanged him, only this time Jack actually *does* give up. Also, the first hour of the last season ends very similarly to the last hour of the first season. The end of Exodus showed us how they were all on the plane and how it crashed. And now we see them all on the plane not crashing.

Kelsey said...

I don't think Sayid is Jacob only because when he woke up he looked confused and asked "What happened?" I don't think Jacob would be confused, seeing how he told Hurley to take them there.

As for the LA X reality, I'm wondering if the bomb really sank the island. If it did, then Faraday, Ben, Widmore, would have either died or never been born. Plus, what about the island gods? Are they in this reality? If so, I'm sure they are pissed that their home is underwater. I don't think Jacob wants the LA X reality to exist, but rather it is a second chance to fix what went wrong the first time. I'm not sure what that is, maybe something to do with Locke, or maybe Claire has to raise Aaron. Whatever it is I think once that happens the MIB loses his game with Jacob and then the world corrects itself.

Jamie said...

I think I know why some travel through time and some don't.

For example, Sun and Ben do not flash. This is because Sun and Ben are alive already in the 70's, and on the Island. We know that Young Ben is. Sun, however, we do not know. But since we know that Sun's Father is connected to the past of the Island, Sun could very well be there too...

This also connects to why Juliet dies in this last episode. If they are indeed in the time period where they would have just landed on the Island, then Juliet is currently on the Island with the Others doing her fertility research. She cannot be alive in 2 places on the island.
Connected to this is the redhead (what's her name- Faraday's lover...) she died because she was alive in her little self on the island. Right before she dies, she says something about chocolate before bed. This is what the little version of her would have said. Her selves were converging. This is also why Juliet says something about Coffee. She, in her other Island self, is probably asking for coffee in Othersville. She is converging with her self. and THIS is how she knows that "it worked." Thoughts??

The Pants of Freedom said...

I think it was a terrible mistake to take this show in the time travel direction. Viewers need to take these giant leaps of faith across these giant potholes of logic.

In addition, so many different characters have come back from the dead, who is to say a death means anything at all? Jin, Locke, Sayid, Juliet (however briefly), Jacob (kind of) that life or death scenes no longer mean anything. why should I care if a character I like dies, if they are going to come back in an episode or two? It robs all future life or death scenes of any heft.

Laurel said...

I guess this theory will be tested when we see if Claire is pregnant...

I do believe we saw a pregnant Claire on the plane. I will have to check again but I remember seeing her and exclaiming, "Hey! Claire!" and you could see her pregnant belly as she was putting her bag in the overhead compartment. Not sure if you could see her belly in the cab at the end. This ring a bell to anyone else?

pbrl said...

Here's a question I had rewatching it - what's the deal with that thing Bram picks up off the floor when Esau disappears behind the column? It looks like a small pepper or something. What's the significance?

Rick said...

I see the alternate timeline as doing one of two things. It will either converge with the timeline we are seeing as the "primary" timeline, leaving the various versions of the survivors in the same position with or without their Island adventures, or it will show that without their journey to the Island the survivors' lives would be left to utter desolation.

If convergence is the game, then notions of fate and predestination come into play. For many years the show has given voice to certain characters' theories that they "are all there for a reason" and that they have a "destiny." If that is the case, then with or without the Island they should all arrive at the same place. The universe has a way of course correcting after all.

If the alternate timeline is meant to show us how the survivors' lives would be destroyed without the Island, however, then my guess is that the device is being used primarily to illustrate the negative ramifications for the world if Jack and company refuse to do what is asked of them by the Island (whatever that may be). In this conception, I imagine that towards the end of the season (or in the finale), Jack (or the survivors as a whole) will be asked to make a choice, between saving the Island and taking on some terrible burden (perhaps becoming the new Jacob, forever bound to the Island and its cosmic significance) or forgetting that any of their adventures ever happened. Not only would this choice illustrate one of the main themes of Lost, that of the importance of free will, it would also allow us to adjudge the ramifications of the "wrong" choice through the use of the alternate timeline.

At this point, my guess (judging by the number of interactions between the survivors at the alternate LAX) is that the timelines will converge, but I wouldn't be surprised to see the opposite.

J.J. said...

Jamie, I don't think it matters if there are two versions of someone walking around on the island.

When the island was skipping through time, there were points when they went back to times when there would have been duplicates of Sawyer, Locke and Juliet walking around somewhere on the isdland. Not to mention Miles ended up in the '70s coexisting with Baby Miles.

Naomi said...

Like others, I had figured that Christian was another manifestation of Easau/smoke-monster. Like in that season 5 scene where he appears in the hospital: Jack went down to that lobby area in the first place because the SMOKE alarm was going off. When someone else showed up, Christian had disappeared.

But now that we've learned that un-Locke's motivation is a desire to get off the island, does this mean that Christian wasn't Smokey? Maybe appearing in the hospital where Jack works isn't the same as actually leaving the island.

As touched as I was by Juliet dying (again), when she said "I have something really important to tell you" I laughed out loud and knew she would be dead for good. When Miles told us in the very same episode what she'd been planning to say, I was pleasantly surprised and impressed. A mysterious question being formed and answered in the very same episode! This is a new Lost story-telling format.

Other than that, everything else has already been said. I can't say I miss Michael and Waaaaaalt, but I do miss Vincent, and like others I would've liked some nod to the cosmic importance that we understood Walt to have in early seasons.

I'm really interested in what fgmerchant said about the island having sunk a while after the incident, rather than because of it. I hope hope hope this means that Penny exists in all timelines and is okay and married to Desmond, because that is the main thing I want from this show at this point!

Jamie, how is Sun's father connected to the island? I don't remember that part.

Anonymous said...

Jamie... I think you might be right.

Also... there's been a lot of talk about Jacob using Sayid's body. But I don't think that's what's going on. There are some inconsistencies in the whole "using someone's body" issue that don't make any sense.

The Smoke Monster/Esau/MIB is currently using Locke's body, but really, he's not. Locke's body is laying in the sand, dead.

So if Jacob was using Sayid's body, wouldn't the same thing have to hold true. He'd be able to take on Sayid's likeness, but there still ought to be a dead Sayid laying there, right?

Same thing with Christian's body, or Ben's daughter's body, for that matter. Is the Smoke Monster (or Jacob) possessing that body, or just shape-shifting?

Anonymous said...

"what's the deal with that thing Bram picks up off the floor when Esau disappears behind the column? "

I thought it was one of the bullets they shot at him.

Duvall said...

But now that we've learned that un-Locke's motivation is a desire to get off the island, does this mean that Christian wasn't Smokey?

un-Locke didn't say he wanted to get off the Island. He said he wanted to go home.

Living with Balls said...

There's so much to wrap my head around. I'm gonna have to watch this episode a second time

Luann said...

My eyes may be playing tricks on me but I thought I saw the tip of a post-crash tattoo on Jack's neck (not blood on his shirt)when he was in the restroom of the plane . As per usual, I will enjoy watching this episode again - and again!

Great review, Alan! Thanks!

Hyde said...

I share some of the misgivings some of the commenters have had about Juliet coming back for thoise few minutes, after the perfection of the finale scene she and Sawyer had last May, but I suppose it was necessary for "it worked."

Also, I'm enough of a Lost geek to hope that we're not completely finished with some elements of the island's past (the significance of the numbers, the origin of The Others as a distinct culture, etc). There was a reference upthread to Walt, and I'm not so sure he's not going to join the long list of elements from the early seasons of the show (e.g, all the tailies and their backstories) that proved to be a narrative dead end. Walt's brief appearance last season could be seen as closure for the character, in the same way that the long scene in "The Incident" with Rose and Bernard was likely a goodbye for them.

One thing that surprised me about last night: did we always know that there were quite so many Others on the island? I recall the scene last season (I think in "Follow the Leader") when new-Locke told Richard he wanted to address his people on the beach, and asked if this was all of them. Richard said yes, except for the ones at the Temple. But it looked like there couldn't have been more than 20 Others on the beach at the time, compared with what looks like a good deal more inside the Temple.

So Desmond has a 2007 existence where he has been on the island, caused Oceanic 815 to crash, destroyed The Swan, been rescued, married Penny and fathered a child with her, and been shot by Ben; and a 2004 existence where he never made it to the island (because it was underwater) and was seen aboard Flight 815 by at least Jack if nobody else? I just wish Faraday was still around to explain how all this will resolve itself.

Mike said...

I'm guessing Jack simply cut himself shaving and they're using that as a red herring.

John said...

Of the people who saw Darlton on Kimmel last night, did they say that Locke was possessed by the Smoke Monster but NOT the Man in Black? That's not what I heard, but someone else who saw it said that's what they got from the interview. If so, it really changes things. Anyway, my (possibly irrelevant thoughts) here:

http://npinopunintended.wordpress.com/2010/02/03/getting-lost-la-x/

Paul Worthington said...

Jamie - sounds like a good theory to me, even with the exceptions JJ points out.
JJ - perhaps that's why Miles is different and has his ability.

Jim Treacher said...

I just started a new job and I've been swamped and I haven't been able to concentrate on TV for more than five minutes at a time anyway, but I could have SWORN this didn't start until next week. Dammit.

Anonymous said...

does anyone think the fountain of life or whatever the heck sayid was put into is somehow connected to the puddle we saw Ben drain in his Dharma house last year to try to call smokey? I always thought that was a random scene last year, but when they said last night the water wasn't clean i felt like they might be connected. How they are connected i have no clue, but something to throw out there

Anonymous said...

Of the people who saw Darlton on Kimmel last night, did they say that Locke was possessed by the Smoke Monster but NOT the Man in Black?

That's how I understood it and I wondered if I'd heard it right but didn't replay it.

And to Jim Treacher .. although you may know this, you can watch online and according to my Tivo schedule, part 2 of the premiere will be shown again next week.

Steve said...

John,
Here is the convo with Kimmell

JK: Is John Locke possessed by the Man in Black?

CC: No

JK: He's not?

CC: No, well

DL: you actually saw a big bit of information about John Locke. I mean, he revealed that he was the Smoke Monster tonight on the show.
--------------

So it seems contradictory, but it's not. Locke isn't possessed by the Man in Black. Locke is dead, lifeless on the ground. Instead, the MIB reincarnated as Locke or is mimicking Locke... but it isn't Locke.

Michael said...

@John (3 messages up):
They confirmed that FakeJohn = smokey (which we saw in the episode), and FakeJohn admitted to being the MIB.

Lindelof & Cuse also said on Kimmell (as Alan asked) "who is inhabiting Sayid's body?"

steve said...

I loved the show and the direction it is heading, except for one thing:

If the 2007 timeline on the island takes place after the Hatch was destroyed since Desmond pushed the failsafe, then it means that we don't get to see Radzinsky go crazy and blow off his head in the Hatch. While we know it happens, I still want the payoff of seeing it. Damon and Carlton intentionally made Radzinsky into the most obnoxious character, knowing that we all couldn't wait to see his demise. But now, it'll take more time travel (which isn't a theme to this season) or a flashback to get the payoff.

belinda said...

Jamie says:
This also connects to why Juliet dies in this last episode. If they are indeed in the time period where they would have just landed on the Island, then Juliet is currently on the Island with the Others doing her fertility research. She cannot be alive in 2 places on the island.

I really like the idea of why Sun/Ben didn't flash into the past last season when they recreated the flight. But I'm thinking that in this episode after the bomb, on the island, the group in the 70s (Sawyer, Jack, Sayid, Hurley, etc) all had the flashing sensation and was flung back NOT to 2004 (when the first 815 crashed and we know where original Juliet was doing with the book club/others), but to the more recent future, back to when Ajira crashed (2007), because

1. 2004 or 2007, the hatch door that Kate saw would still exist, so we know for sure it's post 2004.

2. None of the current gang hanging around the statue with noLocke and Richard and Sun, etc, none of them had the weird whiteflashes/or had headaches when the bomb in the 70s went off, so I thought they didn't jump through time (more like the 70s gang kaboomed and they snapped back into the 'present' time), which means it's only a few days after Ajira crashed, and the statue gang never timetraveled.

2. The Templers where the 70s people went shot the signal into the sky, where it was seen by the statue gang, so I thought it meant that basically the different gangs on the island is now all in the same timeline (a little after Ajira crashed), whereas their alternative world gang are still in 2004 after 815 'landed'.

But anyway, so if the island is in 2007, then Juliet isn't with the Others, so there's no double Juliet running around the island, and no real reason that she 'had' to die (other than to build Sawyer's story, or that Mitchell got a new gig).

And it might explain why we see at the beginning that the island was under water (zoomed from the safe flight, so around 2004), and yet we are seeing all this stuff happen on what I perceive, well, for now anyway to be the same island - because island time is 3 years later, in 2007. (and alternative world is 2004).

Unless I'm completely screwing up the time line somehow and this is all wrong, in which case, oops, sorry.

ZeppJets said...

"My theory - Jacob is Fate. The 2007 timeline shows what is *supposed* to happen. The 2004 (or "X" timeline) shows what happens when people have free will. (Shannon chose not to get on the plane, for example.)"

Interest P. The writers have had a grand old time going back and forth on fate vs free will (especially in season five). I always thought that great opening scene of "The Incident" cast Jacob (and his endless disciples who keep telling us they're the "good guys") as the advocate of free-will. His opponent- Titus Welliver- laments that "it always ends the same". Whereas Jacob insists that there is progress- linear and conclusive: "It only ends once." Jacob's only plea to Ben before getting stabbed was to reassure him that he had a choice. And all those years when Locke was infuriating and obfuscatory, boiling over with talk about destiny? That came about after looking into the heart of the Smoke Monster (henceforward known in my head as "Smokey Silas Adams"... love the Deadwood reunion on this show)

jason said...

"Also... there's been a lot of talk about Jacob using Sayid's body. But I don't think that's what's going on. There are some inconsistencies in the whole "using someone's body" issue that don't make any sense."

I always figured that the Smoke Monster can take the form of the dead people on the island. I don't think he necessarily takes over their physical body.

-Christian
-Yemi
-Alex
-Locke

Scribbles said...

I agree, Jason. The smoke monster only seems to be able to take the form of dead people. That would imply that Sayid has recovered and is not possessed.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if Sayid was 'not dead'. Didn't they successfully drown him in the water?

BF said...

does anyone think the fountain of life or whatever the heck sayid was put into is somehow connected to the puddle we saw Ben drain in his Dharma house last year to try to call smokey?

Please: comic book conventions demand you refer to it as a Lazarus Pit.

I don't think it's related to that, but I do think it's:
A: where Richard took Young Ben after Sayid shot him.
B: the source of Richard's seeming immortality?
C: why Ben and Widmore are *SO* interested in controlling said island.

Michael said...

And more on the Lazarus Pit - Richard took young Ben to be healed there after Sayid shot him in 1977. Richard said that if they healed him, he'd never be the same again. So did Ben undergo the same ritual then that Sayid did in 2007, and get himself imbued with someone else's life force (or whatever)?

P@ said...

ZeppJets - Perhaps I have it backwards. Perhaps Jacob is "Free Will", and his nemesis is "Fate". (Or I could be completely off.)
It's just that a lot of things that Jacob has done seem to indicate that he *is* controlling things. (His summoning of the Black Rock, he cured Juliet's sister's cancer, he was "weaving" a tapestry [I think? I might've dreamt that scene], his endless lists...)
But then he *does* go on and on about people having a choice.

But, regardless of whether either individual is actually Fate incarnate or not, I think Rick may be onto something when he said:

If convergence is the game, then notions of fate and predestination come into play. For many years the show has given voice to certain characters' theories that they "are all there for a reason" and that they have a "destiny." If that is the case, then with or without the Island they should all arrive at the same place. The universe has a way of course correcting after all.

If the alternate timeline is meant to show us how the survivors' lives would be destroyed without the Island, however, then my guess is that the device is being used primarily to illustrate the negative ramifications for the world if Jack and company refuse to do what is asked of them by the Island (whatever that may be). In this conception, I imagine that towards the end of the season (or in the finale), Jack (or the survivors as a whole) will be asked to make a choice, between saving the Island and taking on some terrible burden (perhaps becoming the new Jacob, forever bound to the Island and its cosmic significance) or forgetting that any of their adventures ever happened. Not only would this choice illustrate one of the main themes of Lost, that of the importance of free will, it would also allow us to adjudge the ramifications of the "wrong" choice through the use of the alternate timeline.

At this point, my guess (judging by the number of interactions between the survivors at the alternate LAX) is that the timelines will converge, but I wouldn't be surprised to see the opposite.


I said last night that the series will most likely end with Jack (and perhaps some of the other Losties) having to decide whether to remain in the non-crash timeline, or go back to the one where they did, and that the final scene will be the first scene - closeup of Jack opening his eye on the Island, after the crash.

7s Tim said...

I think the Newthousand4 time line, where 815 never crashed and Hurley is lucky, is all part of the endgame of Jacob. He saw that eventually MIB would manipulate someone into killing Jacob, so Jacob got himself a plan. He influenced various characters to make sure they would be on the Island and in the right frame of mindto have the events of LOST seasons 1-5 happen. He knew he would get stabbed, and had to set up Jack to go all gung ho with Jughead and reset the timeline. It's a temporary fix, but ultimately it will be how Jacob wins their (thus far) eternal struggle. And since Jacob is the freewill guy, he couldn't just MAKE these people do these things, he had to influence them.

I believe the timelines will merge or be reset or something eventually, but I don't mind having the two different stories right now. Kinda like it in fact, as both a structure and the chance to watch a story whose characters we know well, but situations are different.

Love when Hurley is on the phone in line for a taxi. Arguing that Outback doesn't own the rights to the actual outback, or to all uses of the word.

I wish they ran all 18 hours as two hour combos. so awesome.

Oh, and Charlotte died from massive bleeding in her brainspace because the time jumps caused more damage to those who had been on the Island longest, and she had spent her childhood there. Juliet died in 2007 cause she was injured and bleedy.
But in 2004 she might still be alive, depending on when the Island actually sank.

really can't wait for next week.

dez said...

And all those years when Locke was infuriating and obfuscatory, boiling over with talk about destiny? That came about after looking into the heart of the Smoke Monster

Which he dubbed at the time "beautiful." Which is also now extra-creepy, given what was revealed about ol' Smokey last night.

I'm torn between not watching the Kimmel interview and watching it. I want to know what's up with Sayid, but do I want to know now, or wait until the show reveals it? Grr, argh! For those who know the Sayid secret: Are you glad you know now, or do you wish you'd waited to be surprised by the reveal? Thanks!

Brendan McCarthy said...

dez,

They really don't give much away. Kimmel mentions something he saw in a preview, which I'm guessing is the same one we saw or perhaps one of the previews they aired for the entire season. Anyway you could watch it, I think.

Peter D Bakija said...

compain87 wrote:
>>I actually enjoyed the alternate universe on the plane that landed in LAX more than more than the original 2007 Universe(*), and judging by the posts before me I'm the only one.>>

Nah--I was very pro the alternate universe storyline, which hence forth in reference to Anya's explanation of alternate universes, shall be referred to as "World Without Shrimp". All the subtle differences were fun to look for and I'm deeply intrigued as to how they two worlds will inevitably converge (as in a structural sense, they kind of need to). I'm totally on board the suggestion that in the end, World Without Shrimp John Locke will battle Evil John Lock to save everyone. Oh, I can hope.

I was totally ok with the regular world storyline, although I had a similar reaction to the new Others--"Man. Even *more* characters at this point?" But now, hopefully, we can finally get everyone back together again.

Anonymous said...

From Jan:

I really liked both story lines, and I was surprised that I did. Usually one or the other will be the one I want to see the most, but both kept my interest, and I didn't mind when we went from one to the other.

Mamba's Messenger said...

I dont believe the h-bomb caused the alternate time line and here's why. You know what this alternate reality reminds me of? "Family Man" with Nicholas Cage. Bear with me here. Nic Cage was shown a glimpse of what life may have been like had he made some other choices earlier in his life. Perhaps, this new narrative with the alternate time line is a glimpse of how our survivors lives may have been different had the plane never crashed. While that's fairly obvious, what I'm suggesting is that at some point during this season, probably very close to the end, we'll see our survivors become very aware of this alternate time line. Perhaps, it's one long flash of it (just like "Family Man"), that we get a piece of every week, and at the end, they're returned to present island time, what ever time that is. In essence, this alternate time line actually happens in the future on present island time, if that makes sense. Perhaps the purpose of showing our survivors a glimpse of what life may have been like had the plane not crashed, is to reveal how much more meaning their lives had had on the island. The time lines must reconcile somehow, right?

dez said...

Cool, thanks, Brendan!

zzzdog said...

One of the things I find most fascinating about LOST is seeing how differently people's minds work in processing this show. There's so much going on and in such fragments that it's like a mental-process Lego-land.

It's also the nexus of my love/not-so-much love relationship with this show. I love the characters and I love the larger experiential abstractions about the human condition, but I find all the fragments and supposed mystery of everything to have collapsed on itself. Oh sure there's a ton of stuff that's unknown and a ton of stuff hanging, and a ton of stuff that doesn't quite connect, but the parameters have become too elastic to be an actual mystery. A mystery has to have some absolutes so that deductive reasoning can be applied in some measure. Here, all bets are off and changing parameters pop up all the time. Just as you put together thus and such and tie it back to this and that, and confirm it with a conversation had between minor characters back in Season 3, then suddenly we're time shifting or coming back from the dead or red is now green and blue is now yellow.

It's fascinating and I do really enjoy the smorgasbord of stimulus, but I have to just let the 'mystery' wash over me with a "huh, that's interesting" or "what now?" detachment because it's like trying to build a house out of Jello. I can't do anymore than stay quizzical.

But, I do love the larger experience and that's what keeps me watching. The thing about the new alternate reality of 2004's safe landing that struck me the most was how pallid it seemed in comparison to the depth and richness of all that has happened and continues to happen on the island. All I could think was how, even though by anyone's measure the crash and their survival ordeal would be considered something you'd never want to experience, their lives with it were so much more vibrant and so much richer than without it. Watching them I felt a real loss for the safe-landers who never experienced their soul wrenching happenings on the island. I felt a sadness for the intensity of living that was lost by the safe landing; it really put the ordeal of the island in perspective. It revealed it's irreplaceable value.

That's more or less how my mind works in watching this show. I couldn't tell you much about the workings of how things are adding up, and I find a lot of it to be such a labyrinth that it just kind of annoys me. But, I sure do feel those characters and what they are living no matter what time or where.

The closest I get to trying to figure things out is this: I'm assuming Jin and Sun are now in the same time and in the same place so they can meet now. I'm looking forward to that.

There's so much little stuff about the characters that I just loved last night, there's no way I could enumerate them. While I do agree with your assessment about the Juliette love putting Sawyer out of the triangle, I also think it's all such a pressure cooker that ordinary time lines for grief could be trumped by deep long-time feelings, survival stresses, and whatever else this last season's crucible will bring to the Losties.

In any case I'll be there, going, "Oh wow, I would never have guessed that." at the end. LOL.

Anonymous said...

Question then thoughts.

Did Bernard call Rose something besides rose on the plane? (I went back a couple of times and thought he did, but I tend to mishear things on television or in music often)

1) The rock in stream analogy is very good. Jack did seem to have some awareness about everything that was going on. At first I thought the use of the flashbacks/sideways shots on the plain was to show how bad their lives would have been IF NOT for them crashing on the island. Kind of the ultimate irony, all these people trying to get off the island but only in the hopes of running back to crappy lives and futures. Through all the hardships the Island brought, it really did give them all purpose. (Jack-faith, Kate-aaron, Sawyer-real love and a real home, Locke-excitement, Hurley-some sort of normalcy, Sayid-constant shots at redemption Jin and Sun-freedom from her father.)But I guess this 2004 people in LA will be part of the show going forward.

2)Just really hope 90 percent of every episode is spent on the Island because I love the jacob/mib/ben/locke/richard stuff. It is just cool and fun to think about all the possiblities.

3) I have no problem with them bringing in some new characters this late. The Asian guy who was in The Last Samurai is cool and any excuse to bring in an ex deadwood alumn is fine with me. Cuse and Lindelhoff have been pretty successful with bringing in new characters late in the game.

Hyde said...

And more on the Lazarus Pit - Richard took young Ben to be healed there after Sayid shot him in 1977. Richard said that if they healed him, he'd never be the same again. So did Ben undergo the same ritual then that Sayid did in 2007, and get himself imbued with someone else's life force (or whatever)?

It may have been the same ritual, but it wasn't the same outcome at all. There was never any suggestion that Ben the boy had died, and Richard said (regarding what he thought was the resurrected Locke) that even the island couldn't bring you back to life. But the Temple cohort obviously believed Sayid to be dead, and the ritual to have failed. This is something new.

Anonymous said...

Mamba's Messenger:

I think people would be more open to considering this theory if you had gone with "It's a Wonderful Life" instead of "Family Man" as the alt-world fake out movie.

jus' saying.

ZeppJets said...

Just saw this on second viewing: After Sol Starr tells Hurley that the mobilization is to keep "him" out, and Hurley dutifully asks "who?"--- the natural cut to Fake-Locke shows two small divots of light on his bald head. If you freeze it just right, it looks like he has a pair of small horns. God I hope that was atleast partly intentional so that I didn't just waste about 20 minutes.

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to point something out regarding the numbers in the alternate timeline scenes . . . they were only used twice as far as I saw: once in Jack's business card address (8444 Wilshire) and the booth that Kate and the Marshall are processed through (4F). I think the writers made a concerted effort to avoid them otherwise, because there were many opportunities on the airplane and in the airport where they weren't: the pilot announced local time, temperature, visibility, wind speed and none were the numbers and in the airport many flight numbers were announced. It even looked to me like Jack was sitting in Row 24, not 23. Does it mean anything? In a show where very little is unintentional, I have to think so.

paul in kirkland said...

Here's what I want this to end.

Over the course of the year the whole dual timeline continues. They have a live viewing of the series finale, and the story somehow ends up with the people on the island running away from yet another upcoming white flash.

There's a white flash, and all of the islanders burst through the screen, in character, and interspersed throughout the crowd are the other members of the cast, who jump out of their chairs and participate in the final scene. None of the characters that come out of the audience know the islanders that came out of the screen because, well, they were in an alternative universe. The whole thing ends with the characters leaving the area, and Locke comes out of the screen last.

I don't have any specifics, but in general I think it would be a fitting ending to series that constantly played with the concept of time, and also constantly had all the characters accidentally running into each other. They end up in the present, meeting all those people for real in front of us.

drbristol said...

Jascit: The Walt vision of Locke did happen - when he was on the beach in his suit after the Ajira crash and they knew he wasn't on the plane.

Savvy Veteran - I think Miles was spooked because he heard nothing from Sayid and realized he wasn't dead...a least the conventional kind of dead.

Jon - I like your Locke vs Locke endgame.

Biggest tell of the night: Rose telling Jack "It's OK to let go" and "We sure did" after he says he thinks they made it through.

RD - I'm like you, saddle me up for the ride. Lot sof Qs but I trust the writers.

RLB - Hurley was probably sincere - many timelines changed prior to the flight. People had different backstories, looked different, were in different seats - he probably won the lottery. Boone was a together guy. Locke might have gone on the Walkabout (or were those his island memories of hunting, camping and such)?

Ben, Sawyer is *so* going to go out for fast food chicken in an upcoming episode. Long Con on the menu.

KeepingAwake - re: ramifications...Bingo!

Jamie - re: Juliets converging (think Charlotte and the "chocolate before dinner" line)...Bingo!

Jim Treacher - click on my name for a link to full online broadcasts of both episodes.

John/Steve: Locke is not possessed by the MIB, just his image is being used (as were Christian, Eko's brother, Ben's daughter, etc.)

Love how in the off-island world Locke is now a man of science (Can't be healed) and Jack is the man of faith ("nothing is irreversible").

Strap in, people. It's going to be a bumpy ride!

James M. Barrie said...

Now, just a quick comment about how I see the whole dead people walking on the island thing.

After season 5 finale, I got a sense that the visions of the dead created by Esau/Smoke Monster are vastly different from the - for lack of a better word - ressurection of Christian and - if so - Sayid.

"Incarnations" that we know for a fact, or that were strongly suggested, being created by the Monster:
- Yemi (and his body burned up with the nigerian plane)
- Alex (ok, we can't really say that her body wasn´t used)
- Locke (his body coexists with his manifestation).

So, I would say that Esau works by creating some kind of a clone, or shape-shifting himself, or something like that (being noted that we never see any of his manifestations interacting).

Oh the other hand, Christian body has been nowhere to be seen since the beginning of season 1, which makes me think that he really came back to life, or at least some entity took over his body (and obviously I'm guessing Jacob).

Now, considering that it was Sayid's original body laying there, I think it's safe to assume that this is Jacob acting, or that at least he's the same kind of manifestation that Christian is. Unless, of course, he just appeared dead, much in the same way that Charlie appeared to have died when he was hanged by Ethan back in season one (when Jack performed a ressuscitation scene much like the one we saw in LA X).

Just noting that, as someone said, these coming and goings through time and all the dead people walking around are really taking the poignancy of the whole thing. Watching Juliet and Sayid suposedelly dying didn't touch me one bit. I don't care, they can show up again anytime - Sayid was dead for, like, five minutes. No death will ever have again the power that the deaths of Boone, Shannon, Eko, Charlie and hell, even Libby and Ana Lucia had.


Just to end this: if Sayid is indeed some kind of reincarnation of Jacob, I will be very disapointed, because it doesn't make any sense. It would be WAY much cooler if Jacob took over the real Locke's body, and then we could have this epic confrontation between Good Locke vs. Bad Locke - and, as someone said, just watch Terry O'Quinn acting the hell out of the whole thing.

Lockab said...

I'd also like to point out something that isn't getting talked about a lot. . . the utterly tragic, devestating line from Flocke about the real John Locke's final thoughts. John Locke was many of ours hero over the past six years. His final moments were full of utter sadness and confusion. I can't find the words to express how incredibly sad and tragic this moment is and to hear it being described by Flocke who seems to have both empathy, pity and disdain for our beloved John makes it even more tragic and poetic. In some ways, it seems to me that this was the most revealing moment of the entire episode if you go along with the producers' constant meme that it's all about the characters, not so much the mythology. Our greatest character, our greatest hero, died a lonely sad broken and confused man. A moment of silence please for the great yet, in the end, not-so-great, John friggin' Locke. :(

Anonymous said...

I liked the first hour a lot. I'm much more interested in the losties than I am all the "other" groups. I hope we aren't in for a season of Sawyer being all broody about his love of life dying. Don't want to see it. Also blowing up the bomb was Farady's plan, not Jack's. Oh and Terry O'Quinn is fantastic.

IreneInIdaho said...

@ James M. Barrie: Oh the other hand, Christian's body has been nowhere to be seen since the beginning of season 1, which makes me think that he really came back to life, or at least some entity took over his body (and obviously I'm guessing Jacob).

We saw Christian with Claire after she disappeared in the jungle, abandoning Aaron. Season 4 or 5?

And for me, it just broke my heart to see Sawyer and Juliet in their final scene. I was very teary in last season's finale, which I found very powerful and would have been a good ending to that story in itself, but this episode hit me almost as hard. Of course, I'm a Sawyer groupie :-) I wonder how the situation between Sawyer and Jack will play out over the season. Sawyer said he won't kill Jack, but I don't think he's going to limit his revenge to glaring glances.

caguioaness said...

alan, i had been thinking all along (and someone who commented in a season 5 post of yours; i just cant remember if you replied to it or not), that the reason juliet did not stay when the flashes happened is because she is not a native of the island anymore--she was ostracized / disowned in Strange in a Strange Land, remember? the Others marked her like a cow because she killed the Sawyer-hating Other Danny when Sawyer and Kate escaped from Alcatraz in Season3.

Cindy and the kids have been accepted already into their society, thus they're already natives, which i think made them stay put during the flashes. The non-Other-anymore Juliet jumped with the Oceanic survivors during the flashes.

snapzrax said...

you kids have discussed everything already, my head hurts a bit

so i'll just say this. alan, they will go for the triangle stuff. in fact they already started it. they set it up last season during the incident...

juliet catches sawyer looking at kate when bernard speaks of true love. she then decides it was best not to know him than eventually lose him.

she gets trapped by those chains. who is the first person to rescue? kate. kate is the one who grabs the chains and prevents her from falling originally.

then, new season. who is the one who hears juliet? kate.she then proceeds to show her support and be a friend to sawyer throughout the episode.

then there's that final scene, with the sunlight and their love song playing, in which she tenderly wakes him and they act affectionately towards each other.

the thing is, kate is the one who will be able to relink sawyer to the group. there's always the possibility that he'll do a rosseau, but somehow i doubt they'll have him wandering the jungle alone for an entire season.

i dont know who she will end up with, but there will be a triangle.

Anonymous said...

Did anybody notice that in alternate 2004 Sayid has an Iranian passport rather than an Iraqi passport?

dez said...

i dont know who she will end up with, but there will be a triangle.

Yeah, Darlton really has a hard-on for that particular boring bit of business.

IreneInIdaho said...

One man's boredom is another woman's swoon :-)

ap said...

"Or did he just know that the only way to defeat an immortal man who can turn into a smoke monster is with a communications expert-turned-torturer-turned-international-assassin with great hair?"

Love it, Alan! I think that's exactly it.

steve said...

I have a feeling that Cindy, the flight attendant is extremely important for a few reasons

It is well-established that the four-toed statue is that of Taweret, the Egyptian goddess of fertility. Throughout the entire series, there has been an importance placed on the children and fertility: why were Zach and Emma taken? Why can't women conceive and give birth on the island? Why are Walt and Aaron special? All in all, it's clear that there's something important or intended for the children. This is cemented by the fact that Zach and Emma were at the Temple in the last episode.

So how does Cindy fit into this?
- In season 2 on the beach, Mr. Eko asked Cindy to watch over the children
- She was taken right away with the children by the Others, was seen in later episodes peacefully with the Others when they ere in the Dharma village; she brought the children to observe Jack in the cage; and now, she is seen holding the children's hands at the Temple. There is an undeniable connection between Cindy and the children.

Additionally here are some more connections/coincidences

- Her name is Cindy Chandler. LOST loves anagrams and it's apparent that "child" or "children" can be found in her name. In fact, her name creates the anagram "Candy Children." Now, I have no idea what that means, probably nothing. In a humorous stretch, perhaps the candy signifies something sweet and perhaps innocent. Who knows? But it's more interesting that child/children is in her full name.

- Per wikipedia, Taweret was also referred to as "mistress of the horizon." Cindy was the flight attendant on Oceanic 815, attending to the needs of the passengers on the plane in the sky. This furthers my belief that Jacob tapped Cindy (hi-oh!) to be on that plane and ensure that things went according to plan (whatever was that plan)

- Another anagram note: a "chandler" is someone who makes candles, something that has been referenced in many names (Marvin Candle, Haliwax). I'm not sure that this connects with my theory, just that it furthers the referencing to candles (light?)

Finally, here is a continuation of the Egyptian mythology:
- According to wikipedia, [quote]When paired with another deity, she became the demon-wife of Apep, the original god of evil.[/quote] So who is Apep?

- Well, according to wikipedia, again, Apep [quote]was an evil demon, the deification of darkness and chaos (isfet in Egyptian), and thus opponent of light and Ma'at (order/truth),[/quote]

More on Apep: [quote]Consequently, since Atum-Ra, who was later referred to simply as Ra, was the solar deity, bringer of light, and thus the upholder of Ma'at, Apep was viewed as the greatest enemy of Ra, and thus was given the title Enemy of Ra.

"As the personification of all that was evil, Apep was seen as a giant snake/serpent, crocodile, or occasionally as a dragon in later years.[/quote]

More
[quote]In his battles, Apep was thought to use a magical gaze to hypnotise Ra and his entourage, [/quote]

And finally
[quote]In addition to stories about Apep's defeats, this guide had instructions for making wax models, or small drawings, of the serpent, which would be spat on, mutilated and burnt, whilst reciting spells that would aid Ra. Fearing that even the image of Apep could give power to the demon, any rendering would always include another deity to subdue the monster, and/or knives already stabbed into him.[/quote]

steve said...

So, to tie it all together, at some point Taweret became the demon-wife of Apep, and there are a lot of similarities between Apep and the Man in Black:

1. Apep is the evil god of darkness/chaos, battling with the god of order and truth (Ma'at, who is also known as RaR. There is a constant duality and battle of good vs. evil / light vs. dark / black vs white, so much that he is known as "Man in Black"

2. He had epic battles with Ra, the sun god. LOST has made no secret that the sun god is important. All of the references to the single "eye" and the hieroglyphics of the Eye of Horus (Ra) radiating to other gods/deities/characters.

3. Apep takes the form of a serpent/snake/dragon, which is not unlike the Smoke Monster in the way it slithers and moves and attacks.

4. Apep, as the serpent used a magical gaze to hypnotize Ra and his defenders. This reminds me of the way Smoke Monster would scan the victim, project images and manipulate that person into believing/seeing certain things which affects how that person acts.

5. Part of the ways to help defeat Apep included making wax figurines (all of the "candle" references?), and also stabbing them with knives (Locke's knives perhaps?)
---------------------------------

Now, I can't predict what is going to happen, but the more I read about Taweret/Apep/Ra, the more connections are seen with the characters and all of the minor coincidences on the show. I was surprised by how much I thought of Cindy and her connections while reading it and so I think she will be a major player down the road.

Anonymous said...

I absolutely don't understand why so many people (and I'm thinking primarily of the hatefest going on over at Slate) complain about characters coming back from the dead on LOST.

Um... that hasn't happened. Ever.

Boone? Stayed dead. Shannon? Still dead. Libby? Never came back. Mr. Eko? You get the picture.

Now, sure, Christian has appeared. But the show would make no sense to anyone who simply assumed that was just Christian, despite his "say hello to my son" line. That was Jacob, or MIB, or... well, it almost certainly wasn't just some surgeon from the States.

Ditto all the visions Hurley's had. Visions of a crazy guy or ghosts, like the ones Miles can talk to. Nobody came back from the dead.

The only character who appeared to have come back was Locke -- and even Ben was blown away by how unprecedented that was.

And then it turned out he didn't come back after all!

There have been some game changers in this show, but I haven't seen anywhere near the amount that others seem to have. The rules have stayed the rules.

dez said...

One man's boredom is another woman's swoon :-)

If you're talking to me, I'm a girl. So that would be "One woman's boredom" :-) And I've swooned for triangles before, but I find the J/K/S one deadly dull, especially now that we've seen Sawyer in a mature, loving relationship. Him going back to Kate would be a regression, IMHO.

Tony Hill said...

The Lost experience is not done until I read your blog. Thank you very much!!!

J.J. said...

Speaking of the love triangle, and as someone who is bored to tears with it (pretty much thanks to a lack of interest in two-thirds of the parties involved, not out of some righteous stance against love triangles in storytelling)...

I accept that we have to put up with it to some extent.

As long as TV writers are collecting paychecks, love triangles and father issues are two things with which I expect to be beaten about the head in any program that isn't a half-hour sitcom.

But when they're operating in multiple timelines where the characters are all interacting both on the island and off, I fear we're going to end up with the love triangle popping up in both narratives. Which is a bit much.

So, I accept it in the 2007 timeline (and, it feels more tolerable with the air taken out of the balloon a little bit, what with Jack having already had his shot with Kate, and Sawyer having seemed content to end up with Juliet). In the 2004 timeline, though, I'm rooting for Kate to quickly be killed by the authorities trying to apprehend her. Or maybe, in this version of history, somebody stepped on a butterfly 3 decades ago and Kate ended up a huge lesbian who won't have eyes for Jack and Sawyer this time around. Not holding my breath, though.

drbristol said...

"We saw Christian with Claire after she disappeared in the jungle, abandoning Aaron. Season 4 or 5?"

Irene in Idaho...we've seen a manifestation of Christian all over the place (with Claire, with Jack, talking to Lapidus and Sun, etc.) but not his body - as in corpse, like we have seen Locke's. We saw Jack identify his body in the morgue, but we have not seen his corpse on the Island.

IreneInIdaho said...

Thank you, drbristol. I have been confusing manifestations with sightings of people. I must keep better track of these things. Maybe I need a spreadsheet :-)

Ben said...

One potential interesting scene that could happen in the alternate time line...we might get to meet the couple in LA that was going to adopt Claire's baby...

Felicity said...

So how does Cindy fit into this?
- In season 2 on the beach, Mr. Eko asked Cindy to watch over the children
- She was taken right away with the children by the Others, was seen in later episodes peacefully with the Others when they ere in the Dharma village; she brought the children to observe Jack in the cage; and now, she is seen holding the children's hands at the Temple. There is an undeniable connection between Cindy and the children.

Cindy wasn't taken right away. She was with the Tailies throughout their trek acorss the Island to join the other survivors. She disappeared mysteriously moments before Ana-Lucia shot Shannon.

christy said...

Only 181 comments!

Surprise--I have theories! Nothing I've seen presented as such online yet, although I certainly haven't scoured all the message boards and blogs. (I've read this one, Tom and Lorenzo's, Mo Ryan's, Doc Jensen's, and plan to listen to the official podcast and Jorge Garcia's new podcast). But they did come together with help from little tid-bits in various tweets and comments and so on.

I actually finally have a spark of an overarching theory of what's going on in this show. It has to do with reincarnation and other worlds. Basically it's that there are many parallel worlds (or timelines, or universes, or realities, whatever you want to call them). And that when you die, you are reincarnated into the next world, where you are you again, but you (and everyone) has the potential to do things differently. Like Groundhog Day, except with your whole life repeating instead of a single day. (The premiere was on Groundhog Day!) The worlds all exist at the same time, meaning that there isn't really anything like relative time between them, but we experience them one by one, normally. When the LOST characters time travel, whether it's Minkowski and Desmond's Billy Pilgrim style time travel or the donkey wheel's corporeal time travel, you actually aren't time traveling--you're world-hopping. So Jack and them didn't set off a bomb in their own world--they did it in the NEXT world, then returned to their own world. The smoke monster then is the entity whose job it is to judge whether you're worthy to stop reincarnating and enter Nirvana, and, if so, to deliver you there. (Like Mr. Eko). When he says he wants to go home, he means he wants to stop doing this and go to Nirvana himself. The island is where you go to get judged. Jacob's purpose is to bring people there for that purpose. It's also a place that is sort of like a barrier between the worlds, like CS Lewis's Wardrobe (and the Lamp Post is how you find your way back to the Wardrobe). And therefore people want to find it, and once they find it they form a cult-like obsession with it.

I have a zillion little examples and things that fit into this theory, but I won't bore you with them. Not sure if it all hangs together yet, because I'm sure there is a lot more information yet to be provided, but it's the closest thing I've ever had to a working theory so I thought I'd put it out in the world.

The other theory is more specific, and began with a coworker's interpretation of the episode title, "LA X". It is that the new version of Flight 815 we're seeing, the one we've been referring to as the 2004 reality, is actually in 2010. If things in the new timeline can be different because of a butterfly effect begun in 1977, why not the year as well? Thus the title means "Los Angeles '10." Then I remembered that Mo Ryan tweeted a couple weeks back a neat little thing that if you search for a non-stop flight from SYD to LAX on 9/22/2010, you get Oceanic 815. Which is true (and fun!) I figured it was just for fun and obviously it's not like you could search for 2004 so they just did this year. But maybe it's actually a clue! Only real problem with this theory is that I have no idea WHY they'd make it 2010 in the new timeline other than to finally catch some part of the show up with those of us who are watching it. And/or Walt's age.

I'll be rewatching with these two theories in mind.

christy said...

I said: "if you search for a non-stop flight from SYD to LAX on 9/22/2010, you get Oceanic 815."

Sorry, meant to also say that if you search ON KAYAK for those things. That was unintentionally vague.

christy said...

OK one more comment.

Just rewatched and the only year hints are a few looks at cell phones, which do seem rather 2004. I remember when they started the flash forwards it was the newer looking cell phones that really tipped people off.

Also, way above someone asked whether the security guard calls Sun Mrs. Kwon or Miss Paik and it IS Miss Paik! I thought hey maybe they're actually traveling as business associates. There's no explicit mention of what their relationship is. Jin does tell her to button her sweater, but we all know what a patriarchal jerk he is before the Island, so maybe he'd say that to a female coworker too. Of course, he only ever started working for Paik so he could marry Sun, and working for Paik is what turned him into a patriarchal jerk, so...if they're not married, who knows how they ended up in this situation?

Anonymous said...

Her name being "Sun Kwon" was always a mistake, though. Koreans don't do that; she would've kept her name when she got married. So it's not clear whether they're taking advantage of the new timeline to correct an old mistake, or if Sun and Jin are actually not married.

Anonymous said...

Iamcjs said:

LA X equals the main LA 10 we follow
this season to be in sideflashes:
Jack Kate Sayid Sun Hurley
the Oceanic six. PLUS
Jin Sawyer Locke Claire

and yeah that's nine but aaron's still
cooking although a mystery tenth
could be Dez Ben etc...

Jim said...

The Lost producers were on Jimmy Kimmel last Tuesday and clearly stated that Locke is the smoke monster, but he is NOT the man in black. They also hinted that Jacob is not in Sayid...

Jim said...

The Lost producers were on Jimmy Kimmel last Tuesday and clearly stated that Locke is the smoke monster, but he is NOT the man in black. They also hinted that Jacob is not in Sayid...

Anonymous said...

Who is The Economist?

Juanita's Journal said...

I don't see why you're condemning Jack on the Jughead plan. One, the plan came from Daniel Faraday, not Jack. And although the bomb did not reset time, it got them back to the 21st century.

As for Juliet's death, she would have survived if the Dharma people had not exposed the island's energy with that ridiculous hole.