First off, I should explain. Swan asked me to help out this week with a 2 hour gut reaction blog since the schedule for the blog has been a little odd lately. I hope that I can live up to the excellent quality that the previous posts have embodied.
That said, what the heck, LOST? I think that this week's episode was overall a solid one, though it was a bit jarring not to have a central character to flash back/sideways to. It was more like an ensemble flashsideways, where we got a little more of everyone's stories. I really enjoyed that.
The episode was really an outgrowth of The adventures of Desmond Hume , as characters were all being brought together either by fate or the hand of Hume. in fact, it seems like Desmond is pretty adept at convincing people to get to where they need to go. He could give John Locke some lessons on how to get the castaways to do what they need to do - though Locke's Season 5 method of asking "Hey, wanna come? No? Oh thats ok" didn't really seem to have his heart in it.
Instead Desmond managed to just lead characters to places where they would encounter important figures who would help them remember the island. For Hurley, he pushed her towards Libby, for Claire, he led her to Jack and Ilana. And for Locke, he ran into him with a car at 40 miles per hour. Well. At least that led him to Jack as well. The one question I am curious about is HOW exactly Desmond is finding all of these people. Sure, he has the manifest, but how is he tracking them down all over the city? He's like Desmond Hume, Private Detective.
Actually, that is a show I would watch. Solving mysteries, traveling through time.
The show seems to be moving back towards a dynamic from Season One, where the central conflict is one between Free Will and Destiny. This week's "The last recruit" cut right to the chase, and put Jack and Loophole Locke face to face. I really liked that Loophole knew that Jack was the key to convincing the other candidates to join Team Smokey. He's a smart creature…thing…he is. The situation is also reversed now - with Jack as a main of faith and Locke (or at least someone who looks like Locke) talking about how there is no purpose for any of this, and that whatever happens happens, without any thought towards Destiny.
In LAX, a similar reversal occurs when Sawyer arrests Sayid. In Season One, Sayid was the Sheriff, keeping the outlaw Sawyer in check for his transgressions. I like how the show is reversing itself in that way.
I think that the most direct idea that this week's episode ponders is : What does it mean to be on which side? Loophole Locke says "You're with me now" to Jack, but is he? The lines of good and evil seem less clear with the betrayal of Team Widmore once Sawyer and Co arrive on Hydra island. Jack is starting to see the big picture a bit more clearly, and its interesting to me that Sawyer, who usually sees the whole gameboard was conned. Jack is finally coming to understand that being a candidate has always been his fate, and that he needs to start acting like it. The scene between he and Sawyer on the boat was poignant though, and Jack's decision to abandon the people he cared about in favor of possibly protecting the island was a huge shift in his character, perhaps as large as the dynamite scene with Richard in the Black Rock. It was a great moment for the character, even if my roommate Luke yelled out "PIRATE SAWYER! Just making him walk the plank!"
Luke's right though.
The reunion of Sun and Jin was actually sweet, even if I WAS worried that somehow the Pylons would turn back on and their brains would explode.
The big question of the episode : Is Desmond Alive? Of course he is. If they kill Desmond, the show is over.
Also, why did Widmore alter the deal? ( "I Have altered the deal, pray I don't alter it again…") Was it because Sawyer didn't bring Loophole Locke back with him? And why was Loophole suddenly vulnerable once the candidates were mostly on Hydra island?
*Shakes fist* WIDMOREEEEEE.
How can we tell who is on the Dark Side without the color of their Lightsabers and what ships they fly?
-The Looking Glass