Thursday, April 30, 2009

LOST: The Variable

I put my heart and my soul into my work, and have lost my mind in the process.
-Vincent Van Gogh

So I was really excited about getting a Daniel episode because I was thinking, oooh, we are going to get some great scientific island answers. About a third of the way through I started getting suspicious, and during the scene when Ellie and Dan are sitting at the piano and she tells him she wants to take Whidmore's offer and go to the island and the heartbreak on her face as she was looking at him ... well, that's when I knew what she already knew. Dan was going to die. Yup, more than anything this episode was a send-off episode for Daniel - the LOST writers like to do that when their characters kick the bucket- give us insight into their past and just get us started in understanding them in time for them to die (Shannon, Boone, Charlie...). I didn't foresee Ellie being the literal death of him though- that was a bittersweet little twist. That being said, it was still an enjoyable episode, though not as on-the-edge-of-my-seat as I had hoped. I have faith that the finale will be all I hope for and more though. Its Destiny ;)

So Dan, Charles is your daddy after all, making Penny your half sister! (And its officially official that he planted the fake wreckage). I'm not really sure at this point what use that little tidbit of information is to us plot wise though, so I am assuming it is more about appeasing our curiosity and maybe telling us a little more about what kind of a person Charles Whidmore really is. The kind who uses his child as a means to and end. So did Charles and Ellie have real affection for each other at one time of was having Dan a sort of a business merger? Did Ellie leave the island of her own free will as opposed to being booted like Charles because she felt her purpose was to simply raise Daniel to be the person he needed to be and get him back to the island? Is it another Biblical parallel- the parent must be willing to sacrifice their child to prove their faith? I'm trying to remember what all Dan did when he was in the present on the island. I mean, I understand them raising him for the research he was meant to do, but why have him go back to the island just to be killed before he could do anything really important? Because in their eyes 'Destiny' deemed it so? Is there valuable information from his journal that the Others use over the next 30 years? I wonder how long Ellie looked for a journal to match that one so she could give it to Dan at graduation, or if she just kept his journal from the 70s and had one made to match. What would it feel like to raise a child knowing full well what his fate would be? Despite myself, and despite her manipulating ways, I like Ellie and hope that her reasons prove just- like, all of this really is going to save the world or something.

Destiny: 'if one has a special gift then it must be nurtured,' aaaah, and all little Dan wanted to do was play the piano. Sorry you couldn't make more time like you wanted, little buddy. Here's the thing. Destiny being Destiny, isn't it going to happen whether you like it or not? It seems to me that it wasn't Dan's Destiny, it was a life forced upon him. I think the Others have created what they deem as Destiny because they believe in it so fiercely that they make it happen and think its 'Destiny.' Poor, poor Dan had the brain for all of this adventure, but not the heart for it. I guess your mom was right that the women in your life would only get hurt, although, technically, you could probably blame her for that. He's allowed to be a little big crazy after everything ;) Way to freak out little Charlotte just like she remembered. I was really excited there for a minute when you believed that it was possible to change history. Are we now to understand that it isn't possible? Are people NOT variables after all? Or, is it just the past that can't be changed even if its your present? At this point I am thinking that nothing can be changed until our Losties get back to real time. Everything in the 70s already happened and the future Others seem to be doing all they can to make sure that it stays that way, but once they are back to their present then all bets are off. (I hope that happens soon, cause uh oh Sawyer and Juliette, trouble in paradise!) Ellie even said to Penny, 'For the first time in a long time I don't know what's going to happen.' So if the Others only know what to do to recreate time up to this point, well, anything can happen now. I can't imagine they would have Kate and Jack actually go through with the plan and change the fact that their plane crashed- it would definitely reinvent the show, but it would destroy all that has been built over the last seasons. Is a fresh start a good thing in this situation? If they DO go through with it and ignite the bomb, then that is probably exactly the 'incident' that causes Dharma to build the hatch in the first place and won't change anything. Why aren't they catching on? Of course, I guess you would constantly second guess yourself- if you try to do something different than you did before, how can you be sure you didn't already make that decision and its actually the same one? The mind reels ...

So we finally got to see the scene of Dan in the tunnel that they teased us with in the first episode of the season. Its all coming full circle. The drilling exposed electromagnetism and its going to kill people and so they'll build the hatch, yada, yada... what I want to know is how does Chang already know about the time travel possibilities? He seems to be a logical man, and Dharma hasn't discovered or used the Donkey Wheel yet, so who tipped him off and what did they tell him that he is so sure of it? PS to Miles, maybe if you had told the frakkin' truth then your pop would have listened to Dan and then Dan wouldn't have run off to his mom and gotten himself killed. I guess it was fate that you were going to do that though? Chang must believe to some degree eventually though, because he sends his wife and son away along with Charlotte and her mother and who knows who else.

'The island will heal you' is what they told Dan. Hmmm, so did he lose parts of his memory recall because of testing his experiments on himself first, or was it am emotional reaction because of what happened to Theresa? It's a ling shot, but new theory: Daniel is Jacob. I really like this theory except for the fact that Richard seemed to already know of Jacob in the 50's when he talked to Locke. Richard does seem to move through time though, so maybe when Locke spoke with him he had been to the future and seen Daniel/Jacob. Maybe they will take him to Smokey and wake him up as Jacob. Maybe when they told him the island would heal him, they didn't mean his memory. I think his personality would sort of work- he is very intelligent and always just wanted human connection but was never really allowed it- in the form of Jacob, that his emotional instability could prove dangerous. I'm not convinced of this at all, I just think it would be a good way to explain Jacob ;)

Wow, Des, you have got some serious endurance brotha if you were shot so bad that you were coding but you were still able to beat the crap out of Ben before having to go to the hospital. Aaaah, the adrenaline of love. What a man ;) All season I have been wondering what would be the reason for getting Desmond back to the island, because it always seemed inevitable to me that he would end up back there. For a time it seemed that it might be out of revenge for the death of Penny (thank goodness it wasn't that!) and then during this episode, when they went to the hospital my first thought was oh, Penny is going to be the one wanting to get back to the island to heal Desmond! I thought that was a beautiful idea, but again, doesn't seem to be the case after all. (I hope that nurse watching little Charlie is trustworthy- made me nervous). Still, though, Des is the wild card with all of this time travel/destiny confusion, so it seems he must still have a part to play in all of this. Though Ellie and Charles don't seem to be aware of one, because the future has yet to be written. I wonder if we will ever find out why Des is the way he is or if it will always just be one of those unexplainable phenomena like Dan seems to think. Maybe Des will discover that he is the offspring of Richard, who seems to be some kind of immortal Egyptian/Greek/Whatever God. Desmond is a demigod. Desmond is basically Hercules. I like it ;)

Other Thoughts:

Daniel's journal IS the Captain of the Black Rock's journal that Widmore buys at the auction. (Yes! I love it! This makes me even more hopeful that Dan is Jacob!)

So many old details revisited- we now know why daniel and charlotte played the card game- to test his memory...We now get the whole "i'm not allowed to eat chocolates" deal (when she was rambling before she died)And now we'll see that "the incident" will be caused by Jack and co., not the Dharma gang...
Interesting that Lil Dan was playing Chopin’s Fantaisie-Impromptu in C-sharp minor, which includes an ambiguous fantasy-like ending. Ambiguous and fantasy-like – let’s hope that’s not the ending in store for LOST!
The Hydrogen Bomb lies in the shadow of the statue! (not convinced on this one, but a popular theory)

Penny's got a bruthah from anotha motha - who's an othah!!!!! (hahahahaha!)

The reason Charles Widmore has not tried to get back to the island yet is because he knew through Eloise having Daniel's journal everything that was going to happen up until the moment the Oceanic 6 returned to the island and nothing could change that. After that moment, the future was open for anything to happen, so Widmore now knows he can possibly return to the island. That why the war has not happened yet. The timeline of the island was set from 1954 to 2007/2008. Now the future of the island is unknown to Hawking, Widmore, and possibly Ben.

Interesting that Daniel was experiencing a “Flowers for Algernon” mental regression. Wasn’t that book on the bookshelf leading into Ben’s magic wardrobe? The main character in “Flowers for Algernon” is also a VARIABLE – in a scientific experiment to make a mentally deficient man a super GENIUS, you know the kind who can count out 864 beats while playing Chopin. Of course he ends up becoming a SACRIFICE in the name of science, just like Eloise’s little boy. - Flowers for Algernon...the main character, his name was Charlie...just saying...
Was Charlotte really supposed to be older than both Miles and Daniel? She must have born her age awfully well because I would have sworn she was younger than both of them (Yeah, good point)

I don't like that Juliet was wearing a RED shirt throughout the episode - - we all know what happens to the red shirts...... (Ooh, good point. If you haven't noticed before, people wearing red in LOST typically eat it, and I don't mean their shirt)

Theresa was Daniel's research assistant/girlfriend and he tested the time travel on himself first, then Theresa. Looks like they had the same memory loss effects, but it progressed more quickly for her. She was pretty much in a vegetative state. (Because he is an Other did it not affect him as strongly? Was he born on the island?)
I just kept getting the sense the entire episode that Daniel is not the only child who will be or has been sacrificed by a mother or father in this LOST game. One of DHARMA orientation films mentions the work of B.F. Skinner, who was accused of using his own daughter in his behavior modification studies (his Skinner box). He also believed in the possibility of a utopia, having written a book about visiting a utopian commune that flourished because it was run by scientific principles and used his conditioning techniques to rear (and “instruct”) the children. It was his “new Atlantis,” and its goal was to use “good science to help society.” And if you have to sacrifice your own children in the process, well, isn’t it worth it for the greater good?
Destiny versus Freewill - - - Humans have freewill and self determination and this makes us variables capable of affecting change on the universe. I love this idea. Question: How can so many shooters miss nearly point blank shots? Answer: These variable may not be all they are cracked up to be because perhaps the intended targets were not meant to die then from those bullets (case in point Daniel).
"I just got shot by a physicist!" - Radzinsky -That line was almost good enough to be a Hurly-ism.

Anybody else think this is gonna end with a Dallas-like wake up scene on flight 815 landing in LA? I hope not... (I hope not as well. How sad would theat be. Locke wheeling away in his chair, Kate off to jail, Claire off to give Aaron away to some random couple...)

More on Miles:

Regarding the whole business of Lost characters communicating with (presumed) dead fathers via supernatural means: Remember waaay back in ''A Tale of Two Cities,'' the premiere episode of season 3, when Jack was being held hostage on the Hydra station, and we were seeing that flashback to the time when he became certain his father was having an affair with his ex-wife, and there was that mysterious bit of business when Hydra Jack heard Christian Shephard's voice crackling through the broken intercom? ''Let it go, Jack...'' the voice said. I've never forgotten that cryptic moment, and it has always stood as one more bit of proof that there exists on the Island the likely possibility that thought and consciousness can interact and maybe even manipulate the environment.

(Very interesting thoughts on Miles' shirt from the last episode- a bear was attacking a shark on it) Wikipedia. Inputting the words ''shark versus bear,'' got...nothing. But I did get a suggestion to investigate an entry for ''Bear vs. Shark.'' (Semantics!) This led to a page devoted to a ''post hardcore'' rock band named Bear vs. Shark. A quick scan of their discography didn't reveal any clear-cut Lost links, but I noticed that the band hails from Michigan — and the off-Island HQ for the Dharma Initiative is located in Ann Arbor, Mich. Okay, for certain, that's a total stretch, even by my standards. I was about to give up when I noticed that Bear vs. Shark used to go by another name: Dr. Acula. Now, ''Dr. Acula'' is an anagram of Dracula. (Lost traffics in anagrams all the time, like the ''Rainier-Canton''/''reincarnation'' anagram from earlier this season.) ''Dr. Acula'' is the name of a character in Night of the Ghouls, a long-lost Ed Wood horror flick from 1959 that was discovered back in 1987. Wanna know what Night of the Ghouls is all about? From the Wikipedia entry on the film:
''The plot revolves around a confidence trickster, Dr. Acula (played by Kenne Duncan), who pretends to be able to contact the dead, and charges people large amounts of money to speak to their relatives. The ending involves Acula inadvertently summoning a group of real ghosts, and being imprisoned for all eternity.'' (Hmmmm, curious- foreshadowing of something Miles will do?)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

LOST: Some Like it Hoth

A sweet thing, for whatever time,
to revisit in dreams the dear dad we have lost.
- Euripides

So when I first heard the title of this episode, Some Like it Hoth my inner geek very quickly made the connection. For those of you who are not as big of a geek as me (though if you are reading this, then, come on, you're a pretty big geek), Hoth is the ice planet in Star Wars Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back. You know, the planet where Luke gets hurt by the abominable snowman and then Han has to stick him in the guts of the dead llama/ostrich thing they ride and then later we see Luke floating around in Depends in a giant tank of water and then later he makes out with his sister? Yeah, that Hoth. I have to say, who better to appreciate the years of the original Star Wars coming out than geek du Jour Hurley? (PS, Hoth is also the name of a Norse god- see the mythology link in the comments below for more on that little darling). Hurley writing the screenplay to help out George Lucas. Ha! It was kind of odd they used something so pop cultury in the show, but its really kind of perfect, not just for Miles, but such a huge theme of the show is familial generations, and everybody on this dang show has daddy issues - what is a more classic and well-known example of daddy issues than Luke and Vader? In that story the child had to be strong and not give in to the power the father was offering, and in the end they came to a peaceful understanding and the father sacrificed himself for the son. Is that a foreshadowing of upcoming events on the show? Maybe not for Miles' story (why would the mother lie that his father was a heartless jerk if the truth was that he saved him somehow? Unless, A) he pretended to be a jerk to get them to leave for their own safety, B) he was taken over by Smokey and was not himself, C) the truth was far worse than what she told him and she didn't want him looking for his father) but maybe for the island and the Others and Whidmore's generation and now Miles'. New Theory: Maybe Richard really is the only one who doesn't age- he is somehow the guardian of the island who gets to assist in picking and guiding the chosen keepers of the island, the Others. Maybe every thirty or forty years the island needs a new group of people to provide that service. Maybe they prefer family connections when its an option, but the people who ended up on that original plane crash were the new chosen keepers. Maybe what used to be a simple task (we know the island has been around for a while and thousands of years ago when people weren't cynical and easily believed in things like the island it was probably easy to choose people and get them to the island) has become something the Island and the Others now have to take into their own hands. Maybe now that we are in such a fast, scientific, selfish world they had to get the people to the island and to have them go through all of these things to make them believe. . . or its just a sweet shout out from one iconic fantasy masterpiece to another. Rant complete. ;)

Poor little kid Miles. How scary would that be? Not only to be hearing dead people, but to have all of the adults think you are lying or crazy. At least his mom didn't think he was crazy. Sad story. I was diggin' punked out Miles though. Nice to have the confirmation that Dr. Chang is his father and also that a person can exist in the same place twice- modern day Miles could literally hold baby Miles if he wanted to. I feel like that has been what a lot of the last few episodes have been- finally confirming a lot of assumptions/suspicions that they had been leaving open-ended for a while. Its satisfying to get some answers. Miles, your dad is kind of a cad, but he does seem to love little you. Good question you posed him though, my friend, what did happen to the body? A sacrifice to Smokey?

So some intriguing after-the-fact back story with Naomi and also with Bram grabbing Miles and warning him. The dead guy that Naomi tested Miles' abilities on seemed to tell Miles stuff about empty graves and an old plane and seemed to confirm that Whidmore was in fact the one that faked the Oceanic plane wreck. Or, maybe they just wanted to remind us of that little tidbit and confirm to us a time frame for when the flashback took place. Bram is one of the guys working with Ilana on the island modern-time, and now we know that they are NOT working for Whidmore. Bram also seems to know quite a bit- are they Others then? That seems toe likeliest option at this point. "What team are you on?" "The one that's gonna win." Ooooh, are we going to get some sweet Armageddon war at some point of good vs evil? Or maybe evil vs evil?

I love Hurley. Wanting to prevent global warming and harassing Chang with questions. I love the weird camaraderie with he and Miles. "You're just jealous my power's better than yours." Oh, and I love the Captain and Tennille playing in the van! Ha! Sorry the numbers are back to haunt you though, buddy. Kind of surreal watching them build the hatch that plagued you. Er, plagues you ... its hard to get the tenses right with all of this time travelling going on!

Is it just me, or is Horace getting on everyone else's nerves with his hippy attitude? 'Circle of Trust' my bum. Yeah I said it. My very bum.

Sawyer is James to Juliette. He hates being called James, but that's what Juliette calls him. Maybe he will always be Sawyer to Kate, but with Juliette he can be confident being the self he was always running away from. What Juliette said after she made excuses to Ben's dad was interesting, 'well, here we go,' or something like that. I guess she knows the peace that was their lives for the past three years is over. Well, Sawyer/James, it was a good effort trying to keep your cookie cutter life after the Oceanic 6 came back into the picture, but as a treacherous Disney villain once said, "Things are unravelling fast now, boy!"

Hydra Island- have we heard them refer to the smaller island by name before this? Hydra is A) The name of a Greek island and also a city in Algeria, B) A Greek mythological serpent-like creature with many heads that Hercules slew, C) The largest of the modern star constellations, D) Small, predatory fresh-water animals known for their regenerative ability and because they appear to undergo senescence (aging) very slowly, if at all. (Interesting...) - now the mythology stuff would make sense since everything in the show seems to be drawn from Egyptian or Norse or Greek mythology, but Hydra Island is there they do the animal experiments and that little creature certainly seems like a candidate to use for experiments on quick healing and prolonging life.

Ooh, scientists from Anne Arbor, their mainland base in Michigan where Dharma was founded. So Daniel has been on the mainland - for how long and doing what? Was he on the mainland in the 70s then? In which case, time frame wise, he couldn't go and see his mom because she was one of the leaders of the Others on the island at the time. Of course, we know that the Others get to leave the island periodically, a courtesy that Whidmore abused, so I supposed a meet up is possible. Oh Daniel. So excited to see what you have been up to. Ummmmm, not thrilled that I have to wait TWO weeks for it though.

Other thoughts:

Mythological Connections, see:,,1550612_20250233_20272495_5,00.html

FUN FACT FROM THE WORLD OF CONSPIRACY THEORY LORE! Time-traveling Miles is currently parked in 1977 — the same year that the Senate conducted an investigation into a secret CIA project called MKULTRA, which conducted research into brainwashing, mind-control, and even psychic powers. Heavy drugs were involved. And allegedly kids were used as test subjects. Very Room 23 (where they were going all Clockwork Orange on Carl), if you ask me.

Star Wars parallels: 1- Miles and Hurley are like C-3PO and R2-D2: They're delivering plans to their leaders. 2- Like Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back, the Island may be the hidden rebel base of our heroes. This season may end with the discovery of the Island by whatever represents the Empire, 3- nice reference to Luke Skywalker losing his Pierre Chang will soon in the Incident. Can Miles redeem his dad before he dies a la Luke n Darth Vader?

Interesting how Ethan's whole life has been intertwined with Lost's motherhood/pregnancy themes. And in thinking through that idea, I remembered ''Not In Portland,'' which introduced Juliet's back story and showed how Richard Alpert and Adult Ethan were tasked with recruiting her to the Island. There was an odd, still-unexplained moment when Juliet passed Ethan in her sister's apartment hallway. She had not yet met the man she would ultimately help bring into the world. (I love that twist.) Was Ethan messing with Juliet's sister — giving her cancer or facilitating her pregnancy — in order to help manipulate Juliet to the Island? Not a new question, but one worth revisiting, as Ethan's significance is much bigger than we may have thought.

Remember when we all thought Smokey was attracted to fear the way sharks are drawn to blood? I think there's mounting evidence to suggest that what Smokey is really drawn to is guilt. I don't think the Monster's interest is in judgment or redemption. What it wants is control. That's why Mr. Eko had to die: He could not be manipulated. Smokey smoked out his great guilt, but when Eko basically said, 'Dude, I haven't done nothing wrong, I only did what I needed to survive,' Smokey threw up its hands like a director pissed at an uncooperative actor, said ''I can't work with this fool,'' and fired him. And by ''fired,'' I mean ''brutally pummeled him into jungle pudding.'' But Ben didn't rationalize his sin, and by submitting to Smokey's critique, he is now more useful than ever to the Monster's masters... or ... Ben suckered Smokey. Surely it must be possible that Ben knows exactly what Smokey is, knows exactly how Smokey operates, knows exactly whom Smokey serves. Did the Monster really crack Ben — or did Ben only show Smokey exactly what Ben wanted Smokey to see? Many have been speculating Ben was correct when he insisted to Sun that John Locke 2.0 isn't the resurrected version of Locke 1.0, but rather something terrifyingly inhuman. If that means Locke is actually (knowingly or unknowingly) an incarnation of Smokey (à la Yemi and Alex), or is a separate though similarly controlled Island avatar, that everything Ben did in ''Dead Is Dead'' was done to manipulate whatever it is that Ben suspects John Locke 2.0 might be. Blabbering about wanting to be judged, swiping the photo of himself and Alex from his old office, finally confessing to John that he was wracked with guilt for causing his daughter's death — all that could have been a big show, designed to manufacture the appearance of a guilty conscience and therefore give Locke/Smokey/the Island reason to believe that he could be manipulated. (Whoa, I can totally see this being the case)

Last year, Ben claimed he did not order the Purge — that it had been a choice made by the Others' leadership at the time. Presumably, he was referring to Widmore. So after finally liberating his own private Narnia of the pesky Dharma infestation, Widmore himself got usurped. ''Dead Is Dead'' didn't reveal Ben's power-grabbing trick (remember that Widmore said Linus ''fooled'' him), but here's a hypothesis: What if the Purge didn't really happen? Call it Ben's ''ultimate solution'' to getting rid of corrupt Chuck. How I see it: Widmore ordered the Purge; Ben faked the catastrophe with knock-out gas; and when all of Dharma awoke, Richard interpreted their faux resurrection as an Island miracle and proof that Widmore wasn't acting in accordance with its wishes. In the aftermath, Widmore was exiled, and Ben negotiated a permanent peace with Dharma that led to the Others moving into Dharmaville.

Another “Alice in Wonderland” reference: Li’l Miles finds the key to the dead man’s room under a WHITE RABBIT.

How great that the Dharma kids were learning about ancient Egypt! Under the hieroglyphics on the chalk board (that Jack was erasing) it said "Writing of the works of God."

is it possible that when people die their consciousnesses are absorbed by the Smoke Monster so that it houses all their unfinished business (goals or desires never fulfilled, revenge never exacted, etc.) and then it completes their unfinished business for them?: The episode where Shannon is shot and killed- what stood out was that Shannon has Vincent sniff Walt’s shirt in order to find Walt again (Sayid does not believe Shannon has really seen him). She shouts: “Go find WALT!” Vincent pulls Shannon through the jungle and takes her directly to BOONE’S grave. Later Sayid finds Shannon and says her grief over Boone’s death is causing her to see things. She insists it is not about Boone, and Sayid says, “Then why are you at his grave.” (Of course the answer is she is there because Vincent led her there, following her command to find Walt.) Later Sayid confesses his undying love to Shannon in the torrential rain (his trademark kiss of death), and the camera angle shows someone looking on. Shannon sees the vision of Walt again and runs after it, only to be shot by Ana Lucia. Chasing the vision of Walt is what put her into Ana Lucia’s line of fire.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

LOST: Dead is Dead

The world ridicules a passion which it seldom feels; its scenes, and its interests, distract the mind, deprave the taste, corrupt the heart, and love cannot exist in a heart that has lost the meek dignity of innocence.
-Ann Radcliffe

Weird to see Charles Whidmore on the island, and once again they turn the tables and make Ben seem like the 'good guy' over Charles. The one thing that seems to bring out Ben's human compassion is children. Poor nutty Danielle! Interesting warning to her- 'if you want your child to live, every time you hear whispers, run the other way.' So Charles was banished because he was trying to live in both worlds and betrayed the island by not being single-mindedly dedicated to it? I was hoping for a little bit of a bigger showdown/betrayal to have caused the riff between Charles and Ben, but I guess they just had clashing personalities from the beginning. I wonder why Richard isn't the leader of the Others. He is always telling everyone, 'its what Jacob wants' and things like that and they believe him without question. He's like their shaman who is the most in tune with the island and Jacob, but there is always a separate leader chosen. Is it because the leaders always end up corrupted?

I am diggin' confident, in charge Locke- Terry O'Quinn was so great in this episode! I love his little wave to Sun when Ben tells them to look outside. Also, it clears up why Jack being alive-again is different than what Christian is. Christian (and the other spectres we have seen) really are just embodiments of Jacob/Smokey/The Island. He/It takes dead bodies like Christian's and Amy's first husband so that he can project in human form? He certainly favors Christian as his host body of choice. John, though, really is alive again. John the Beloved? Its nice to see Ben scared/humbled, though its hard to trust. Nice little role reversal with John and Ben. I'm glad that Ben was asking him how the knowing works- I love it when the writers throw something into the show that we have all been wondering about ourselves ;) Love the whole Temple scene- very Indiana Jones. Whoa, Smokey, way to get manipulative and personal there, showing Ben his guilt and taking the form of Alex to get your point across. Is Charlie to be protected because he is the offspring of a former Other or because he is Desmond's and Desmond is important to the island with his wild card status? Its going to be an interesting twist to now see Ben as John's second hand man. Wonder how long that will last ;) We already saw the classic Ben in the beginning playing both sides and manipulating Caesar until he felt he was in the clear.

Time Travel memories: so Ben really didn't remember them all in Dharma? Even if it just happened for the first time, shouldn't he have those memories now Like Desmond did with? Is it just his subconscious remembering Juliette and being obsessed with her and remembering that Kate and Sawyer helped so he put them on the 'good' list but not Jack? If not, I wonder if its because our Losties are going back to the future pretty soon so little Ben never got to know them. Although, he should still recognize the ones who were there for three years. Hmmm. Rousseau didn't remember Sayid because he hadn't been in her past on the island originally - if she were alive still she may suddenly have those memories. Ben didn't remember Sayid killing him because it hadn't happened yet. The wild card will always be Desmond- it would seem that the same rule applied for him when he woke up with memories of Daniel after Dan told him to go and find his mom. Sigh. Just when I thought it was starting to make sense.

The whole thing with Ben living with Dharma but being one of the Others ... its making me think more about Amy. We know that her son Ethan ends up an Other taking orders from Ben. Could that have been a young Ethan with Ben in the flashback when he took Alex? I think there is more to Amy anyway- it was very odd circumstances when they found her in the field with the bag over her head and her first husband was killed. She has an I-could-hop-on-the-crazy-train-at-any-moment-and-murder-you-all vibe about her. (Still loved you as Michelle on 24!) Is she one of the Others living among Dharma like Ben? Or does Ethan get taken like Alex? That would be ironic since he later steals Claire to get Aaron.

If Caesar is really dead then I am a tad surprised. I thought he would have a bigger part to play than just being the new Jack (self-proclaimed leader) for a few episodes. Although, there is a certain irony with that, because when the show first began the intention was to have the Jack character die pretty soon and have the Kate character step up as the leader, but then people fell in love with boyscout Jack and broken Kate and they went another way with it. This time the Jack character ate it early. (Maybe). I'm excited to find out what the deal is with Ilana- 'What lies in the shadow of the statue?' A test to see if Frank was one of them? If she didn't already know who her other Others/partners or whatever they are were, then that suggests she is some kind of Other new recruit as opposed to someone who has been on the island before. What is her mission?

Thinking a bit more about Richard in the jungle when Kate and Sawyer bring him little Ben to heal: ''His innocence will be gone. He will always be one of us. You still want me to take him?'' Interesting that he made it their decision. It makes me think of how they all convinced Locke that he had to sacrifice himself and how the Others wanted Locke to kill his father (though he got Sawyer to do that). The island can torture and influence you, but in the end it seems to need people to voluntarily offer themselves to its ... service, for lack of a better term. In little Ben's case, he couldn't speak for himself at that moment and so Richard had Sawyer and Kate speak for him. What will the repercussions be on them for making that decision? Did they bind themselves to him? Well, they were on Ben's 'good' list, for one thing. Interesting. The loss of innocence makes me think that they took Ben in and sliced his daemon away from him. (For those of you who have read Philip Pullman's, His Dark Materials books ;)

Yay! Penny and Des and little Charlie are all intact! Those were some well deserved punches that Desmond got in. Charles Whidmore vs Desmond. I have been pondering this relationship more as theories abound out that Desmond is the key to fixing the time conundrum because he is a wild card and isn't affected by Fate the same way as everyone else. Now that we know that Ellie and Charles are connected, I am wondering about the way Charles treated Desmond from the beginning. Back then it just seemed like he was a protective father and a hoighty toighty, snobbish jerk. Did he truly not like Desmond or was the whole thing a ploy to get him to enter the sailing race to prove himself so that he would end up on the island and show him the way back? When Des was in the monastery the monk there had a picture of Ellie on his desk, and Penny was sent on a delivery or something to the monastery and that is how they met. Was Charles using Penny as a pawn the entire time to get what he wanted from Des? Could they have really foreseen the love that would happen between Penny and Des? Or, did they fall in love first and then Charles and Ellie decided to use that to their advantage? I still wonder how in the dark Penny was about everything her father. Not that I suspect Penny of wrong intentions towards Des at all, but she must know some things. I mean, without her fathers help she was able to track Des down, but then that may have been Charles' intentions as well. I do think that the last time Des went and spoke with Charles, when he told him where to find Ellie, Charles was being sincere. I think Charles, whatever his original intentions, really didn't anticipate how much Penny and Des would mean to one another and really did miss and want to protect his daughter. Charles seemed broken down and even seemed to respect Des- did he always respect Des but was manipulating him for the good of the island or has he changed because of all that has happened? There are some holes in this story that I am really anxious to get filled in. I'm glad that they cleared up the question Penny's mother though- she is/was an 'outsider,' not an Other (so not Ellie- when does Ellie get banished?)

Other thoughts:

FUN FACT! There was a 1993 film flop entitled Dead Is Dead, the plot of which, according to, goes like this: ''While Eric Shepherd tries to find answers to his brother's death, he is partially dismembered by an unknown creature. A young woman finds Eric and gives him a miracle drug called Doxital that grows back his severed limb and saves his life. A chain of haunting events follows Eric on his quest for the truth.''

Ben might be getting a download of knowledge about the Island and his future, thus making a mess of his free will, and likened this damning mind expansion to Adam and Eve eating the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. But maybe I shouldn't have been so Biblical or so negative. Adam & Eve story about the fall from grace and loss of innocence vis à vis the eating of forbidden fruit and the consequent advance in knowledge and understanding, is only one variation of this myth. Many cultures have a similar story, most of which include one additional detail: Death. If you read the Sumerian/Babylonian Story of Queen Inanna and the Enuma Elish, you will see that Inanna, in her journey to become queen, must first attain a full understanding of life — and to do that, she must first understand death. She proceeds on a journey to the underworld where she encounters her counterpart and loses her innocence, i.e., she dies, at which point she reemerges in the world of the living as ''enlightened'' and ready to take her throne.... I would posit that Richard must kill Ben and resurrect him — forever altered, enlightened, but tainted. Much like Persephone [from Greek mythology] after eating from the pomegranate or Izanaki [from Japanese mythology] after eating the fruit of the underworld. The Egyptian Book of the Dead- 'Chapters 1-16: The deceased enters the tomb, descends to the underworld, and the body regains its powers of movement and speech.... Chapters 17-63: Explanation of the mythic origin of the gods and places, the deceased are made to live again so that they may arise, reborn, with the morning sun.' Oh, and Chapter 125? 'The Declaration of Innocence!' Reborn with the morning sun?' The Egyptian sun god was Ra, and Richard Alpert's initials are RA....

Ben's Dharma house is seemingly built upon an existing temple tunnel. That is a curious thought since it was Dharma who built the houses. Interesting, right? Did Goodspeed and his Dharma crew know of the temple?

Ben to Locke: My God! You’re alive!Doubting Thomas to Jesus: My Lord and God! You’re alive!Ben to Locke: It’s one thing to believe it, John, and another thing to see it.Jesus to Doubting Thomas: Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.Ben stalks Danielle in order to kill her and is stopped at the moment of truth by the sight of Alex.Ben stalks Penny in order to kill her and is stopped at the moment of truth by the sight of Charlie.Is the thought of a mother being taken away from a child the only way to stop Ben? Is it his Achilles heel?

So if you are responsible for the death of a family member, that family member is manifested by the Smoke Monster and either kills you or gives you marching orders?Eko was responsible for his brother Yemi’s death, Yemi was conjured up by the Smoke Monster, Eko wouldn’t ask for forgiveness and was killed.Ben was responsible for his daughter Alex’s death, she appeared to him via Smokey, he was repentant and “it let me live.”
"What's about to come out of that jungle is a thing I can't control." and out walks John Locke. That says a lot about the heirarchy of John and Ben according to the island, I think.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

LOST: Whatever Happened, Happened

There is a point at which everything becomes simple and there is no longer any question of choice, because all you have staked will be lost if you look back. Life's point of no return.
-Dag Hammarskjold

Oh, Kate! Break my heart! You did come back for Claire. You went back for love of Aaron. It kind of irritates me how ominous they played it when Jack found Kate at her house and she was like, 'don't ever ask me about Aaron' and she was acting like she drowned the kid or something. She was just grieving, I suppose, and that why she went and shagged Jack, cause that's what she does when she's upset. She did that with Sawyer before and now with Jack. After Kate initial grief though, I love it when Kate has a purpose and is no nonsense. So heartrending when she looked at Aaron one last time and said, 'bye baby.' Well, maybe you got pregnant when you shacked up with Jack that last night and you'll get a baby of your own and Juliette can delivery it healthily ;) I guess its official that we'll see Claire again.

The Sawyer whisper secret revealed- wasn't exactly a surprise, since it seemed inevitable that it was about Clementine, but still nice to have it officially resolved. Cassidy certainly believed Kate easily- it kind of makes me feel better knowing that she had a friend all of that time. I don't know about her logic though- Sawyer broke Cassidy's heart, but I don't know that he broke Kate's- not on purpose at least. It seems to me that it was always Kate going back and forth, and I think that in the moment he jumped Sawyer really was trying to be selfless. I like that he admits they wouldn't have worked out and I like that she came back for Aaron, not him.

Although, they have both done a lot of growing up in the last three years... ... There is obviously still some pent up chemistry between Jack and Juliette and of course between Kate and Sawyer, but it seems the people they should be with are: Jack saved Ben for Kate and Sawyer saved Ben for Juliette. PS, I like Kate and Juliette as friends- no more fighting over boys!

Jack. Goodbye boyscout. Why can't we have a combo of the old and new you? I like the old take charge you, but I like the zen, believing in fate you. Why do you always have to be the extreme of one or the other Jack? Why can't you be both at once? Find the Jack that Kate does like. The minute Juliette walked into the room with Miles and Hurley I got so excited in anticipation of her telling Jack off. After this episode, what Jack boils down to is a destroyer of innocence. YOU created Ben the monster by not stepping up. Speaking of monsters, is it Smokey that is going to heal Ben? Sure looked like Richard was carrying him into the Temple where Smokey rips off the limbs of Frenchmen.

I didn't quite catch it, but when Richard and the other Others were talking about running it by Charles (Whidmore, of course) they also mentioned Ellie, right? Are they both leaders of the Others at this point? From the tone of Richard's voice it kind of sounds like he is already a little fed up with Charles and possibly grateful for the possibility of a new 'chosen one' in Ben. Also, interesting little dialogue when Richard first appeared and Sawyer was surprised and was like, 'where did you come from,' and Richard was just like 'you asked for my so I came.' Hmmm, more than meets the eye? Is the show just being teasing because Richard is always so mysterious or did he really show up out of nowhere from somewhere odd... like another time?

I have to say, for so much of the show being focused on fate and the islands intentions and 'what happened, happened,' it seems to me that fate/the island is fairly dependent on love. Romantic love, love for a child, love for, or, lack of love from, a parent, love for ones people, and even love for the island itself. When the island is working things out and fixing things its own way as Jack seems to think its doing now, how can it anticipate the human spirit and passionate, emotional intentions? Maybe Fate just sees the bigger picture: something about these people is needed to fix what is broken on the island. Maybe the details really are left up to, well, Fate. ;) Maybe Fate vs Choice is not as black and white as it seems.

A Miles, I missed your sarcasm and I loved you explaining time travel to Hurley. Although, I don't know why you are so stumped over Ben- you don't know that Ben didn't know Sayid killed him. If anything it certainly seems now that it was all meant to go this way to make Ben the Ben he is as an adult. Richard did say that Ben wouldn't remember any of it when it was over, but even if that is true he wouldn't be able to avoid the talk around camp about that Sayid guy who shot him and how he was miraculously healed... possibly making him think he was somebody special, much like Locke. This whole time travel conundrum- So up until now there was nothing that could be changed, but now this is their present, despite them being in the past, and it can affect things. I am thinking at this point, the the finale is going to be absolutely mind blowing- not by changing the way the story is told by adding flash forwards or time travel, but by changing history itself and therefore the entire plot of the show in a way. Whew, I am getting excited just thinking about all of the possibilities.

Other thoughts:

When Jin turned over young Ben after Sayid shot him, Ben said, “Help” – which is exactly what Jacob said to Locke upon their first meeting in the cabin.

This talk of Ben losing his innocence, with the temple being involved, makes me think that there is a matter of good vs. evil on Lost after all. An evil force may be the source of some of the island's powers. However, that means that there is a force of good somewhere to balance it out.
Richard did appear out of nowhere, but it was when they got closer to the temple when it happened. Perhaps becoming one of them and losing your innocence means that you become part of the island/monster/whatever it is. Thus, when we say that Smokey takes form of people, we are half correct, but it is in fact that the people Smokey becomes is part of the overall creature.I suspect there is a certain range around the temple where Smokey can just have people materialize. Like Ecko's brother did. Like Juliet's shrink did. Like Walt did in season 2 for Shannon. Perhaps Walt was taken to the temple.

I know this theory has been thrown around some in the past, but what if...because there are so many dead spirits floating around the island...the idea of Ben changing or the French team changing is because they become embodied, or at least partially embodied with the dead spirits of the island? I know it is real sci-fi-ee, but it would be a good reason why Ben would "never be the same" again.

I love how Ben's life was saved in the future because Jack loved Kate. And saved in the past because Sawyer loves Juliette. Very ironic that Ben, seemingly incapable of loving anyone, is saved by love. And very ironic that he may have grown up to be a sweet boy had Sayid not shot him...

Jack is now channeling Locke:“I came back because I was supposed to.”“Maybe the Island just wants to fix things itself.”So who is Locke now channeling?

Land of the Living - do we now have a name for the island?!? :-} And speaking of the "Land of the Living" thing... if the Island is the Land of the Living, maybe the Temple is the access point to the Land of the Dead. Isn't Cererbus (the supposed name of the smoke monster) the name of the dog that guards the gates of Hades?Does anyone else think that the residual effects of Ben's gunshot may have had something to do with why he developed a spinal tumor later in life that needed to removed by a certain surgeon? I figured the bullet wouldn't be able to be removed, scar tissue would build up, "tumor" forms...

Maybe Jack was supposed to come back to the island so he could witness firsthand why Ben turned out the way he did. Because he wouldn't save his life in 1977, Jack is responsible for Ben going to the "Other" side. Then in 2004, he was able to unknowingly redeem himself by saving Ben's life when he removed the spinal cord tumor. It's all about redemption, and the shifts in time are allowing them to catch glimpses of their pasts and futures. The views into these windows of time will help them find their redemption and salvation. Ben is the temptation of evil, and Locke is their guide to salvation. I think it's all about Sawyer, Jack, and Kate at this point (the three on Ben's list, right?), and they are being given the opportunity to redeem themselves. Kate is being tested with Aaron and Claire, Sawyer with Dharma, and Jack with Ben (or the Devil) himself. All of the other supporting characters on LOST are there to help them on their way, to explain and sometimes be their conscience.

This crazy, twisted thought that just entered my head: What if Young Ben neither lives nor dies in this episode but instead...falls into a coma? What if the rest of season 5 proceeds with the tension of knowing (and worrying) that should Ben die, history-negating paradox may occur? What if in the very last scene of the season, time-traveling Desmond, full of vengeance toward Ben for killing Penelope and Young Charlie, sneaks into Young Ben's hospital room, pulls the plug on Young Ben's life-support machine, and causes time to implode? (I love this, ha!)Sawyer: I thought you said this wouldn't happen!?Faraday: I was wrong!Desmond: See you in another life, bruthas!