I’m on a quest to re-watch every episode of Lost, one per day. As I polish off each DVD, I’ll post my thoughts on the episodes contained therein. (Even if it’s a couple days late!)
SYNOPSIS: Sayid, Charlie, and Ana Lucia find Jennifer Gale’s grave and then Henry Gale’s balloon. In the Swan, blast doors come down around the living area, trapping Locke. He manages to stop one door from descending fully, and he asks Henry to help him stabilize it so that Locke can enter the Numbers. But the door suddenly drops as Locke tries to slide under it, crushing his leg. Henry then has to navigate through the air ducts to get to the computer. From Locke’s point of view, we hear the countdown reach zero, and then black lights illuminate the living area, revealing some sort of map drawn on the blast door. But before long, the blast doors recede, and everything returns to normal. Locke crawls to the computer room, where Henry finds him. Locke thanks him for not trying to escape. Henry says that he entered the Numbers, he saw the hieroglyphics, and then it went back to normal. But then, Jack and Kate arrive with Charlie, Sayid, and Ana Lucia. Jack pins Henry to the wall as Sayid explains that they found the balloon and the corpses of both Jennifer and Henry Gale. Also in this episode, Jack bests Sawyer in a game of poker, Jack lies to Kate about the situation in the Swan, and the two of them find a pallet of Dharma food attached to a parachute. In the flashback, Locke finds out his father died, but his father actually reveals himself to be alive and trying to elude men to whom he owes money. He asks Locke to retrieve the money for him in exchange for a cut of it, but Helen finds out and ends their relationship because of Locke’s obsession.
THOUGHTS: The mythology thickens. The blast door map is something that only adds to the Island’s intrigue to the casual viewer and provides a ton of hints to the fanatical one who studies the freeze-frame (as I did after this episode first aired). If only Desmond were still around to explain all of these Swan quirks! Meanwhile, Henry Gale’s story almost checks out. Had Sayid not been so thorough and determined to expose Henry, who knows what kind of ruckus the Others’ could have caused with this infiltrator. The last shot is great: we see Ben’s face, partially obscured by the angry Losties’ surrounding him, trying to deduce his own fate. Definitely a “Well, rats” moment for Ben, to put it mildly.
SYNOPSIS: Locke confesses that he is “sick” to Libby and shows her his stash of Dharma food. She convinces him to dump it all out. But then the rest of the Losties find the pallet of food, and Hurley panics at this new temptation. Just then, he starts seeing an imaginary friend named Dave. Hurley asks Sawyer for medicine to counter these hallucinations. Sawyer mocks him, and Hurley attacks him for calling him crazy. Dave appears to Hurley again and lays out a believable argument that the whole Island exists only in Hurley’s mind. He nearly convinces Hurley to jump off a cliff to “wake up,” but Libby stops Hurley and brings him back to reality, and the two kiss. Meanwhile, in the Swan, “Henry” admits to being an an Other who killed the real Henry Gale, and Sayid nearly kills him for his treachery. He also tells Locke that he never pressed the button when Locke was trapped. Locke dismisses this as a lie, but Henry says that he’s “done lying.” In the flashback, Hurley is seeking treatment at a mental hospital to deal with his issues after being involved in (and perhaps to blame for) a deck collapse that killed two people. Dave is his friend in the hospital, but Hurley’s doctor convinces him that Dave is imaginary and only wants him to stay the way he is, and so Hurley turns his back on Dave. Also, we see that Libby was a fellow patient at the hospital.
THOUGHTS: Now this was a fun one. Even though Hurley goes through all this heavy drama (pun slightly intended), it still has a lighthearted feel to it. And I think Evan Handler should receive most of the credit for that for his performance as the sardonic oddball Dave. And I appreciated that so much of the focus of the episode was Hurley’s self-esteem and self-image as an overweight man. The show doesn’t tiptoe around the matter but instead faces it head-on and creates an interesting and ultimately uplifting story about it. And it was a neat twist at the end that Libby was in the hospital too, but I wish that storyline would have been played out a bit more in the rest of the series. Meanwhile, Ben is doing what Ben does best (and what Michael Emerson acts best): manipulation and mind games.
SYNOPSIS: Bernard, frustrated that the other survivors have given up on rescue and are settling in, tries to recruit others to help him create a giant “S.O.S.” sign on the beach out of black rocks, but strangely, his wife Rose doesn’t support his efforts. Bernard’s lack of managerial skills cause all of his helpers to bail, and he’s left making the sign alone. Rose finally tells Bernard that she doesn’t want to leave the Island since she hasn’t felt sick while she’s been there, and Bernard tells her that they can stay there for as long as she wants. Meanwhile, Locke tries to recall the blast door map, Ben rejects the idea that the Others would trade Walt for him, Eko and Charlie are revealed to be building a church, Rose and Locke contemplate the healing powers of the Island, and Jack and Kate go to the truce line to draw out the Others but instead find a dazed Michael. In the flashback, we see when Bernard and Rose meet. But later, when Bernard proposes, Rose reveals to him that she has terminal cancer. He takes her to Australia to see a faith healer, and she becomes angry, saying that she had made peace with her prognosis. But she sees the healer for his sake anyway, and the healer tells Rose that there are areas on Earth with special powers but that she’s not in the right one for her condition. She tells him to keep the money and decides to tell Bernard that the healer was successful.
THOUGHTS: I’m so pleased that we got an episode centered around Bernard and Rose. It’s the first (and only?) time that characters who are only recurring get their own flashbacks. And it’s a sweet tale about hope, determination, and sacrifice—three themes that are dealt with often on Lost—but not usually in one episode, right? Bernard’s quest is a noble one, and I’m surprised it didn’t get more support. But maybe the other survivors have made peace with their lot in life, much like Rose made peace with her cancer. Maybe the other survivors no longer feel they need to be rescued. But honestly, if they had started this sign when they first crashed on the Island, they could have easily been done by now! (If I had been among the survivors…) And finally, Michael returns. What happened to him? What will he do next? We’re going to get the answer to the latter question before the former.
“Two for the Road”
SYNOPSIS: Ana Lucia is talking to “Henry” when he attacks her and nearly strangles her before being knocked unconscious by Locke. Locke asks him later why he didn’t try to kill him when he had the chance, and Henry tells him that Locke is one of the “good ones” and that he was actually on his way to get Locke when he was captured. Ana Lucia tries unsuccessfully to get a gun from Sawyer but then gets it by distracting him with sex. Meanwhile, Hurley tries to surprise Libby with a romantic picnic but gets them lost and realizes that he doesn’t have a blanket. In the Swan, Michael comes to and tells Jack and Kate that he found the Others but that there are only a couple dozen of them and that their living conditions are worse than that of the Losties. He says that the Losties can “take them.” Jack, Locke, and Kate leave to get guns, and then Sawyer realizes that Ana took his. Locke realizes what Ana is doing. Sure enough, Ana confronts Henry at gunpoint—but she can’t bring herself to pull the trigger. Michael tells her that he’ll do it, and she gives him the gun. He apologizes to her and then shoots her in the stomach. Libby, retrieving a picnic blanket, walks in on the scene and startles Michael, and he inadvertently shoots her, too. Then he faces Henry and shoots himself in the arm. In the flashback, Ana Lucia quits the police force after killing her once-attacker and flees to Sydney with Christian Shephard when he asks her to be his bodyguard. But Christian spends most of the trip drinking and then drunkenly confronts his daughter’s mother, so Ana bails on him and confesses her crime to her mother on the way home.
THOUGHTS: Damn. I’ll forever remember the the final moments of this episode as one of the most shocking moments in all the television I’ve watched over the years. The first time I watched it, I just sat and stared at the screen for a few moments after the installment ended, just trying to process what happened. Michael shooting Ana Lucia was shocking enough, even if we might have seen it coming for a few seconds beforehand. But then to have him immediately shoot Libby… it’s almost unconscionable. And she wasn’t even supposed to be there—she was just retrieving a picnic blanket. Then there’s just bleak silence at Michael looks at what he did. And when he opens the armory door, Ben looks at this deranged stranger with wide eyes, but Michael actually shoots himself in front of him. To have two series regulars slain within ten seconds of each other and another one wounded: it’s just something I hadn’t seen before nor do I think I’ve seen it since.