Lost: Follow The Leader

This was another runaway freight train episode where all the action was breakneck and just had to happen in the exact order at exactly the right time (quickly) or things wouldn’t/won’t work out right.

Rather than try to recap or bullet everything, I’m just asking questions.

  • Per Jenn, why are the hostiles so hostile?
  • Who do you think is successful in their attempts to “change” things? Locke killing Jacob? Ben (and Richard?) trying to stop him? Jack and Eloise detonating the bomb? Kate, Sawyer & Juliet trying to stop them? How will Ilana/Bram figure into the big season finale next week? How much of a wildcard is Sayid?
  • Do you think the map that Sawyer drew for Radzinsky is the map that keeps being used throughout other points in the island’s history?
  • If Richard is to be believed when he tells Sun that he “saw them die” in reference to Jin/Hurley/Kate/Jack/Sawyer/Juliet, is that an indication that both “sides” of the fight over the hydrogen bomb/Swan argument fail, OR is it an indication that their success doesn’t make any difference? Timetravel discussion is hard!
  • Is Eloise’s motivation anti-Dharma or pro-Farraday?
  • Why is Radzinsky so concerned about the timeframe for The Swan?
  • What is Richard Alpert’s official role within the Others? Why hasn’t he had more control/input/guidance/direction for the “leaders” over the decades?
  • Would you attempt to change the past/get rid of any pain in the future if you could (or thought you could)?

I’ll leave you with one this thought: I really liked the Black Rock as ship-in-a-bottle moment. Subtle, but welcomed.

I also really dig the casting of all the “younger” versions of all the Others, specifically Widmore & Eloise who are spot-on.

Lastly, I continue to be impressed by all the ways the show illustrates how much people can change and yet still be the same and vice versa. In an episode on leadership, it was nice to see Locke, Jack, Sawyer, Ben & Richard all act in ways both familiar and new. Makes me think I’d like to be a real writer when I grow up one day.

Sleep-deprived and ready for this year’s cliffhanger. Hoping we don’t get too much information and really wishing these seasons were 22-24 episodes, if only so the storytelling didn’t seemed rushed sometimes.

Add your questions, answers and annotations in the comments.


Lost: The Variable

I thought I was going to have to do math this week – functions and binomial equations were mentioned during pre-screening – but luckily what we saw was the equal and opposite of “the constant”.

I may go a bit unorganized here and just do a running list of questions. Let’s go.

  • Who is Penelope’s mother?
  • Maybe it’s Eloise, which means Daniel & Penelope are the Luke & Leia of Lost. Or maybe I’m projecting based on the “Hoth” reference from two weeks ago.

  • Who else in the narrative – outside of those on either flight (Oceanic 815/Ajira 316) and the boat folks – is experiencing their linear lives out of calendar order?
  • I really don’t have an answer here, but my gut tells me that there are others who are unstuck in time based on the events of the island. Plus, how hardcore is Eloise’s belief in destiny that she would send her own son to his death at her own hands.

    BONUS: who else guessed that Widmore was Faraday’s dad? Show of hands (be honest).

    Also: loved LaFleur/Sawyer calling Faraday “H.G. Wells”. Gotta love The Time Machine.

  • What do any of these numbers mean?
  • 141717

  • Who are the other women in Faraday’s life?
  • “They’re all going to get hurt.” Or kill you 30 years in the past. Nice touches though to tie in all the previous Faraday flashbacks.

    Theresa, Carolyn and Charlotte, for sure, plus Eloise. Who else?

  • Can the past or future be changed?
  • I’m still listing this item as “TBD” but it’s interesting that Faraday changed his mind on the subject.

    In all fairness, he seemed sick and suffering some memory loss when he was dependent on “the constant”. On the other hand, he walked right into his own death, probably a little bit aware of what his mother might do.

    Which begs the question: did Faraday have some kind of death wish to escape any “destiny” his mother had “planned”?

    Would fulfilling your purpose in the face of supposedly being smart enough to avoid it count as a revolutionary act?

    Did Eloise expect him to change anything or is she firmly in “the constant” camp (especially since she told Penelope she didn’t know what would happen next).

    Working against Faraday: his own words: “I tried to avoid saying this (to Charlotte). I didn’t think I could change things; maybe I can.”

    Gut check time: if you had to write the final scene in the entire series (just over a season away) do the events on the island ever “happen” or is there some kind of global reset that isn’t quite Newhart or a Snow Globe or Purgatory but is somehow satisfying? I’m leaning that way myself but I’m willing to entertain alternate theories.

  • Belonging
  • Related to the “big question” above, where do our characters belong?

    Together? (Live together, die alone)
    Apart? (Whatever happened, happened)
    What will happen?

    Very existential, I know, but nice to see the greatest themes of Lost front and center.

Good episode. Only two left this season.

See you next week and in the comments!

Lost: Some Like it Hoth

Before I begin my recap, here’s a very useful Lost timeline via ABC.com. It works both episodically and chronologically, but doesn’t shed too much light on the whole “when is it now” of the Ajira survivors, though I like what Will had to say about that last week.

On to the bullets:

  • Numbers!
  • 3:16 (Ajira Flight number) on the microwave in the opening scene that gets echoed in the timecode – 3:17 – of the beta recorder in the next scene.

    The original numbers – 4 8 15 16 23 42 – being built upon the strange magnetic source of The Swan.

    I also really dug the reference to the Flight 815 crash cover-up when Miles identifies what Felix knew at the time of his death. What a great “test” by Naomi and it’s awesome that the documents discussed end up on the boat with Miles et al.

  • Bram!
  • The burly gentleman who abducted Miles prior to his taking the boat journey was also present in last week’s episode, at Ilana’s side brandishing a weapon.

    The fact that he was anti-Widmore in the past makes me completely re-think my prior judgement of Ilana. Maybe she works for Ben (or the island? the others?) and is on the island to counteract the effects of the boat people/Ben’s island movement/Locke’s island movement.

    Maybe – just maybe – she works for Locke?

    In any event, things are more complicated than even I had initially thought.

  • Empire!
  • If Hurley hadn’t waxed poetic about Luke discovering the truth about Vader in Empire I was going to draw the comparison of Miles to Luke and Dr. Chang to Vader, but one of Hurley’s roles on the show is to act as the
    voice of the audience, so it probably wouldn’t have seemed so groundbreaking/earth-shattering.

    I will give Lost props for referencing the best movie of either trilogy and for trashing on Ewoks. Ewok trivia: the word “Ewok” is never spoken in Return, which means all of us who grew up with the films and especially the toys are victims of the marketing machine that is George Lucas. None of us should have that wasted brain cell storing the name of this furry little bastards!

    But I digress.

    I’m thinking there’s something to Naomi’s description to Miles that the island has many “deceased individuals residing on it”. Not sure what this has to do with Lost canon OR Empire, but it does bear repeating.

  • Ann Arbor!
  • Another Michigan reference and hopefully we’ll get to see the DeGroots soon, but we did get to see the return of Faraday.

    We knew he was coming back since one of his flashes sees him working directly on the construction of one of the stations (it could have been The Swan but I think it was The Orchid).

    Which makes me wonder about time travel and whether this is Faraday’s past (pre-boat) or present, but he did know Miles so maybe the events are happening for him AFTER Charlotte’s death/Locke’s island movement?

    I really don’t know. You tell me.

    Also: Dr. Chang was reading a book on polar bears to a young Miles. I love all the small nods to early season touchpoints.

  • Songs!
  • It Never Rains in Southern California by Albert Hammond
    Love Will Keep Us Together by The Captain and Tennille

Random links to end the post:

Hope you enjoyed this week. Leave a comment and I’ll see you next week.

UPDATE: I forgot to mention the summer camp-style “color war” from the preview of the coming weeks’ episodes, but isn’t it interesting that the scientists (like Radzinsky and Faraday) get black jumpsuits while everyone else has on khaki? Also, why the disdain from Chang for the polar bear experimentation and some of his Ann Arbor (DeGroot) colleagues?

Curious to hear what you have to say.

Lost: Dead Is Dead

If you’re a fan of Michael Emerson, tonight’s episode of Lost “Dead Is Dead” was for you. And me too since I love to hate/love to love Benjamin Linus.


  • WHEN are the Ajira survivors?
  • I’m becoming a broken record, but I don’t see how Locke can be alive in the present/future given the rules of the island and the time travel rules as I understand them.

    I’m more than happy to be proven wrong, but it’s really odd that everything is deserted in the “present” storyline.

    I don’t know that they’re in the past but I’m willing to entertain any and all explanations.

  • What lies in the shadow of the statue?
  • A reference, certainly, to the four-toed statue but maybe also an allusion to the “lies” told by the statue of John Harvard [link one] [link two]

    Of greater interest to me than the mystery of the riddle is how/why Ilana got the guns, what she’ll do with them and who she works for.

    I’m guessing she works for Widmore. Who’s with me?

  • Children
  • I thought we were going to get some kind of flashback tonight that showed how Smokey had initially saved Ben, but I’ll take what we got.

    Interesting that the pity Kate showed Ben in saving him is echoed in Ben saving Alex (from Widmore).

    Also, seeing Ben stop short of shooting Penny when he notices Charlie was a nice touch.

    I like that Ben told Sun to tell Desmond he was sorry. It makes me wonder why Sun hasn’t expressed missing Je Yeon or why Kate didn’t seem sad to be apart from Aaron.

  • Ethan
  • If Ethan is the son of Amy and Horace, how did he end up with Ben and The Others?

    Shouldn’t he have been killed in the purge?

    Is this a case of Ben being kind to children before he rescues/steals Alex?

    Also, I just thought of this: shouldn’t his last name be Goodspeed and not Rom?

  • Leadership
  • How and when did Widmore become the leader of The Others?

    If Ben was so convinced that the island didn’t want people leaving, why were Ethan and Richard permitted to work for Mittelos Bioscience in the recruitment of Juliet “Not In Portland“? And wasn’t he regularly leaving the island himself?

    Why does it seem like none of the “leaders” knows the real story of the island, even Richard?

    What was up with Anubis in the glyphs in Smokey’s lair?

    What was Alex in Ben’s vision?

    Why did Ben mention whispers to Rousseau?

I’m sure I’ve missed a ton. Tell me where I went wrong.

Also, POTENTIAL SPOILER: the season finale will be entitled “The Fork in the Outlet?“.

Additionally, is anyone curious about what Desmond, Penny & Charlie are up to now that they’ve been attacked?

Are we all thinking that Widmore is more motivated than ever to find/get back to the island (via Ilana)?

Anyhow, thanks for reading! Leave a comment.

Lost: Whatever Happened, Happened

Before I begin here are a couple of links you might have missed recently:

So the title seems like a nod to some of the time travel nonsense, but here are the bullets:

  • Hurley and Miles explain time travel
  • I really wanted Miles to draw M.C. Escher’s Moebius strip to make the explanation complete, but I think that’s the best metaphor.

    If you’re anything like my co-workers (or me on this blog sometimes) hearing two characters hash out the whys and what-fors of the whole time travel issue was refreshing.

  • Meet the new Jack
  • (Un)like the old Jack. The journey to the (pick your) side where Jack is become John Locke, is almost complete.

    [Insert maniacal, emporial, Vaderian laughter here]

    For what it’s worth, I like the new Jack especially when he talks of saving Ben, ergo:

  • Ben on the operating table. Again.
  • The dialogue tonight was top notch.

    The Hurley/Miles conversation from earlier/above and the Jack/Kate conversation about saving Ben were spot on.

    I’m paraphrasing here, but these lines are why I love Lost:

    “I’ve already done this once.”


    “Maybe the island just wants to fix things itself. Maybe I was just getting in the way.”

    See what I mean about Jack becoming Locke?

    Which brings me to:

  • Why did the Lostaways return?
  • Sayid came back to shoot Ben (or so he thought. See last episode/post/recap).

    Jack doesn’t really know, just that he’s supposed to. Very Lockesque.

    Kate claims that it’s to find Claire, but is that the real reason?

  • Patsy Cline’s “She’s Got You”
  • A nice little touch in the very beginning of the episode that leads us to believe Aaron might end up with Cassidy, when he actually ends up with Claire’s mom (I’m supposing?).

    The key line: “I’ve got your picture, she’s got you”

    Another killer lick: the woman woman who found Aaron in the supermarket looked an awful lot like Claire, which may have influenced Kate’s decision to ultimately leave him.

    How creepy was it that Kate had the feeling that it was about time for Aaron to be taken from her?

    Of course it’s the loss of Aaron that Kate replaces with the saving of Ben, so there’s that.

  • When is Ben?
  • Given all the other talk about time travel and the emphasis on young Ben (and with a living, breathing Locke) the question becomes: is Ben in the past/present/future or somewhere/when else?

    I honestly don’t know but the episode certainly focused on a Godwin’s Law
    conundrum: if you could kill Ben (or HItler) would/could/should you?

    The whole storyline reminds of a great WikiHistory comedy piece. Brilliant stuff. Read it.

    Fascinating stuff on the Lost front as well and it looks like next week will give us some answers RE: Ben Linus.

    Can’t wait.

That’s all I’ve got for tonight. Let me know where I went wrong.

Good night!