Tuesday, May 30, 2006

"Lost" - Live Together, Die Alone

Well, my fellow “Lost” fan brethren, this is the final post before the summer hiatus. Word is the Lost schedule for next year will be a lot less infuriating with six episodes set to air in a row from October to November, then 12 weeks off before airing 17 straight new eps. starting in Feb. (apparently the creators were just as pissed at this past season’s air schedule as the viewers). So until then I’ll have to entertain myself with ABC’s Master of Champions.

“Live Together, Die Alone” – Desmond Episode

“I was wrong” – John Locke, after discovering that pushing the button actually prevented the Apocalypse.

We start with the discovery of the sailboat that Sun pointed out last week. After a few of our shirtless heroes climb aboard, they find out that it’s a drunken, gun-toting Desmond.

Cut to Nighttime. Did anyone else notice the new island mess hall where Jack was hitting the buffet? Anyway, it’s been a few hours, and still no one’s talked to Desmond, who’s content to just sit on the beach and booze. Jack asks why he came back, and Desmond responds that he was headed due west for 2 ½ weeks before he ended up back at the island. Then again, maybe his bearings may have been slightly skewed during his drunken blackouts.

Then we see the first scene of Desmond’s back story. He’s being released from prison and is finally reunited with his Dickens novel, Our Mutual Friend, that he’s vowed to read before he dies. Upon leaving the jail, he sees Charles Widmore (or, as fans of “The O.C.” know him, Caleb Nichol). Widmore is the father of Desmond’s true love, Penelope. He’s been intercepting Desmond’s letters to her in order to ensure that his daughter will move on, and he offers him a bunch of cash to ensure that he won’t try to contact her. In a side note that’s probably only interesting to me: On The O.C., Julie Cooper did the same thing to the Mexican gardener Marissa was dating!

So Sayid finally comes up with a plan the “gain the advantage” on crazy Michael. He’s going to take Desmond’s boat and sail to the other side of the island and scope out the Others. Then he’s going to signal Jack and company to come to the beach and formulate a plan to get Walt. You know, if I were on the island, I’d say, “F@*k that s*@t. I’m taking the boat and sailing as far away from this God-forsaken hell hole as humanly possible. And I bet I could do it better than Drunky McBoozebag over there!” But since I’m stuck in the hell hole that is Hollywood, let’s see where Sayid’s plan take us.

In the hatch, Locke tries to get prevent Eko from pressing the button, but he’s overcome by Eko’s extreme badass-ness and kicked out of the Hatch yelling “We’re puppets on strings!” Get ‘em next time, Locke.

On the beach the troops are gearing up to head over to kick some Others ass. Kate finally chimes in with “Hey, remember all those beards and make-up I found in that hatch. Maybe they’re all pretending.” To which Michael responds with another diatribe of mangled insanity - “They eat fish! They’re more scared of us than we are of them!” Whatever, Crazy.

After Desmond lets Sayid take his boat, we flashback to America, where Desmond runs into… LIBBY! Why is she showing up in everyone’s flashbacks during some gut-wrenching scene? Can we expect her to be the one who tells Rose she has cancer? Or she’s the one who paralyzes Locke? Anyway, Desmond asks for money for a boat so he can race around the world… she has a boat… Blah Blah… she gives it to him… racing for love… SNORE.

Trudging through the jungle, the Losties see a giant swooping bird that may have said Hurley’s name. Everyone’s calm except for crazy Michael, who tries to fire off ten rounds randomly into the air before discovering that Jack gave him an empty gun. Whoops.

In another section of jungle, Charlie walks in on Locke sobbing after Eko kicked him out of the Hatch. Charlie tells him that Desmond’s arrived, which is news to Locke. Where the hell’s he been for the past day? Sitting in the jungle, feeling sorry for himself and weeping? Oh how I miss Season 1 Locke.

We’re then taken back to the stadium where Desmond and Jack first met, only this time we meet Penelope, Desmond’s lost love. We find out that Desmond is racing on this trip around the world not just for love, but also to get his honor back. And what does Desmond do when he’s finally face to face with the object of his affection? – he turns around and runs though a stadium. “Honor” my ass - this guy was in prison! Take a night off, Des.

So Locke finds Desmond and drops the bomb that Dharma Pearl exists and pushing the button is all a big joke – an experiment for people in the Pearl to observe. Desmond’s given three years of his life to pushing that button, so needless to say he’s a little curious. Elsewhere in the jungle, Michael acts shady and weird.

Speaking of weird, on the sailboat, Sayid’s cruising along with his shipmates Jin and the preggers Sun when they see the four-toed foot of what was a giant statue. WTF? Check it out here: http://lost.cubit.net/pics/2x23/foot.jpg

In the Hatch, Desmond and Locke successfully lock Eko out of the computer room by triggering the blast doors. The plan is to let the counter go down to zero. The Man of Faith no longer has any.

This leads to Desmond’s flashback of how he got onto the island. Nothing too flashy – just got caught in a storm and banged his head. He ended up on a beach near the hatch where Kelvin Inman found him. Kelvin’s played by Clancy Brown, who also played Joe Inman in the episode where Sayid becomes a torturer (same person… or twin brother???). Kelvin, who wears a make-shift biohazard suit every time he’s outside, also had a partner, Radzinsky, helping him push the button in the hatch. And his partner was the one who made the edits in the orientation film. And we find out later that he blew his brains out in the hatch.

In the jungle, our team happens upon some Others, and Sawyer manages to take one of them out. At this point Jack confronts Michael in one of his awkward head-bobbing tirades, and everyone’s let in on what Jack already knew. Oh, and Michael confesses to killing Libby and Ana Lucia. I bet now he’s wishing he didn’t shoot himself in the arm.

Back in the hatch, Eko has recruited Charlie to find some dynamite to try to open the blast doors. Desmond’s sure that the dynamite won’t work, which leads us to another flashback showing Kelvin working on the black light map that Radzinsky started. After Eko successfully torches the entire hatch with a giant fireball, we go to another flashback introducing the fail safe.


Yes, it’s true, in this one quick scene we actually learn more information than we have in months. Kelvin tells us that behind the wall is a geologically unique electro-magnet. Also, the “incident” was a leak that causes the charge to build up, and pushing the button is the only thing that can release the charge and prevent it from getting out of control. However, using the fail safe will destroy the whole thing. So basically, the button DOES do something significant, but in the true Lost spirit, Desmond chooses not to share this information with anyone.

Locked in the computer room, Desmond and Locke chat about what Locke really believes. In what I thought was a really good Locke scene, he tells Desmond about how he thought it was his destiny to get into the Hatch, and how his beliefs ended up killing Boone. Then he saw the light emitting from the hatch door and thought it was a sign. “But it was probably just [Desmond] going to the bathroom.” As much as I rip on Locke for going soft, his character really did have a tremendous arc this season which is culminating in this countdown in the hatch. Why Desmond doesn’t just tell John about the magnet and the incident is beyond me. I suppose Locke needs to find this out for himself.

Cut to Sayid and his plan to scope out the Others. He finds out what we’ve all known for a while – that the Others were faking it and that village Michael saw was all a façade, complete with a fake hatch door. We check in with our heroes who’ve discovered a pile of tubes that we know came from Dharma Pearl. They read one of the notebooks that are filled with details of years worth of Hatch activity (“0415 takes a shower”). Could it be that the Pearl was the “rat maze” or “Skinner Box” that Locke thought the Hatch was? After seeing Sayid’s black smoke on the horizon, Jack realizes that Michael’s led them into a trap. All of a sudden, we hear the voices surrounding them, following by the barrage of knock-out darts that not even Jack Shepard can withstand.

We’re now 20 minutes from the end of the world, and Desmond finally questions Locke about the Pearl. Locke gives him the printout from the computer, we leads us to another flashback. In this scene, Desmond notices Kelvin’s suit is ripped, so he follows him out to the jungle. After seeing that Kelvin’s been taking off the suit every time he’s outside, Des follows him further, eventually leading him to his boat. Kelvin says he’s been fixing the boat, and that he’s not even sure if the button’s real. Desmond starts getting real pissed and Kelvin comes clean that he needed a sucker to “save the world” after he left. Desmond spears him into some rocks, accidentally killing him. After realizing what he’s done, Des grabs the fail safe key and runs back to the hatch.

However, in the Hatch, the countdown has reached zero, and the magnet’s starting to go berserk. The computer reads “System Failure”, and all metal objects are being sucked into the wall. Fortunately for Desmond, he manages to push the button before anything noticeably goes wrong.

Unfortunately for the passengers on Oceanic Air flight 815, that little slip up might have caused the plane to crash onto the island, thus ruining everyone’s lives. Whoops. The printout from the Pearl computer confirms that the date the plane crashed was that same as the System Failure.

Cutting back to our captured heroes, Kate, Hurley, Jack, and Sawyer are bound and gagged kneeling at the Pala Ferry (which was mentioned in the Orientation Video for the Pearl). The Ferry approaches, and the apparent leader of the Others approaches which happens to be none other than (not) Henry Gale! How Usual Suspects-y.

Back in the Hatch, we see Charlie and Eko have miraculously survived the fireball, though Charlie’s hearing’s a little off (those loud Driveshaft concerts didn’t help either). In the computer room, Desmond finally tries to convince Locke that pushing the button is real, and that they have to do it. But Locke isn’t swayed, and when Desmond tries to push it himself, Locke finally smashes the computer. Desmond’s sure that he’s killed them all, but Locke’s convinced he’s saved them. Now’s the time for Des to be the hero. He opens the blast doors and searches for his copy of “Our Mutual Friend”, which led me to say, “How the hell’s he going to read a damn novel in three minutes!”

But in the final flashback, we see that day Locke was talking about. 41 days from the plane crash (and from the day Desmond killed Kelvin), we see Desmond at the end of his rope contemplating suicide since he’s the only one who can push the button. He reaches for the Dickens novel and finds a note from Penny, who knew that he would open the book in a moment of great desperation. Here we learn that all you need to survive is one person who loves you, and Penny will be there for him always. At that moment, after throwing a tantrum, he hears Locke banging on the Hatch door outside, and he knows that he’s been saved.

Back in the hatch, Desmond is on his way to “blowing the dam”. The clock hits zero, and, as expected, all hell breaks loose. Whatever was in the hatch that wasn’t destroyed by the fireball is surely being crushed by the magnet. Eko pushes Charlie away and goes to find Locke, who’s standing in the computer room uttering “I was wrong.” Desmond says a prayer, and turns the key.

Cutting back to the tied-up Losties and Others, we hear a weird sound and the sky turns a bright white. Gathering from everyone’s reactions, it doesn’t look pleasant. After a moment, things are back to normal. Although we don’t know the fate of the Hatch, we know that the Hatch door that Locke and the gang blew up said “Quarantine” on it (and were reminded it was there when Eko saw it), and that sucker flew from the Hatch to the beach. Then again, dumb-ass Charlie came stumbling out of the jungle, so it couldn’t have been that bad.

At the ferry dock, (not) Henry Gale holds up his end of the bargain and gives Michael his son back (apparently the Others got more than they bargained for with Walt) along with the ferry and directions to follow a certain course to be rescued. Things seem to be working out for Michael. Henry tells Michael that once he leaves he won’t be able to get back to the island. And even if he tries to tell people on the outside what’s going on, he’ll have to confess to two murders. Ms. Klugh lets Hurley go so he can tell everyone else not to ever come there. Michael leaves with Walt, and Kate, Jack, and Sawyer are “coming home” with the Others, a.k.a. they’re screwed.

Then a pointless scene where Claire kisses Charlie and nobody cares… BUT THEN, one of the most important scenes in the history of the show. Two Portuguese guys are sitting in a station in either the Arctic or Antarctica. They’re playing chess when the computer reads “Electromagnetic Anomaly Detected”. The say something about how they missed it last time (apparently when Desmond triggered the magnet), but this time they’ve got it. And who do they call… Penny Widmore!

And scene!

Phew, that was a long one, so thanks for bearing with me. Now I’ll offer the Pops Interpretations and Predictions Q & A section:

- Why exactly was that scene at the end so cool?

Because for the first time we saw the outside world exist at the same time as the story. That means that there IS an outside world, and the island is not purgatory or the last place people are living on Earth. It’s simply an island existing in the world that people are looking for. And remember, Hurley’s rich too, so he may have people looking as well. But he’s only been gone 66 days, whereas Desmond’s been missing 3 years.

- Did the Hatch blow up when Desmond turned the key? Are Locke and Eko and/or Desmond dead?

In a word, No. I think when Des hit the fail safe, the magnet either exploded or the polarity was immediately reversed with such force as to launch the hatch door all the way to the beach. So is the Hatch useless? Possibly. With the damage from the dynamite, the ensuing fire ball, and the crazy magnet, and the now destroyed computer, I doubt we’ll be seeing much of it in Season 3. Plus, now we have a whole bunch of new sets for Season 3 – The Other’s Camp.

As far as the characters being dead: First, Locke can’t die because he’s a main guy and we still haven’t found out how he was paralyzed. And Eko was right next to Locke, so I’m sure he’s okay. As far as Desmond goes, he just had a two-hour back story. His death would be too unsatisfying for the story. We don’t know why he was in prison, and his relationship with Penny Widmore may be the key to everyone getting rescued. Plus he’s a great character.

- What’s with that weird, four-toed statue?

You got me, but I found this:

The statue also seems familiar to the statue described in this summary of "Headlong Hall" by Thomas Love Peacock:

"The place is quite a wilderness," said Squire Headlong: "…Here you see is the pedestal of a statue, with only half a leg and four toes remaining: there were many here once."

But who the hell knows.

- Kelvin said he was working for the Dharma Initiative. Was he the same guy as the soldier in Iraq with Sayid?

Not sure if he is that same guy or the guy’s twin brother. Lost likes twins (ie. “Bad Twin”), but the lostpedia.com site says that Kelvin’s full name is Kelvin Joe Inman, so they might be the same person.


- Was Kelvin trying to lure Desmond outside with his ripped body suit?

This one’s confusing to me since that was the day the plane crashed. If Kelvin was trying to lure Desmond away, was it because he knew that on that day the magnet had to pull the plane out of the sky? Did Kelvin work for Widmore, or was he a Dharma employee that went rogue? After all he was making the black light map, which showed that he was scouting the island for other hatches and mapping the terrain. But it didn’t make too much sense that Kelvin would just give up on pushing the button that easily. Then again, after two seasons of watching everyone’s story of how fate put them on that plane, perhaps it was a coincidence.

- Where’s that actress who played Penny Widmore from?

“Mind of the Married Man.” But she was also in “The Librarian: Quest for the Spear”.

- What do the numbers on that print log from the Pearl mean?

Well, to Desmond it made perfect sense: 0922044:16 = 9/22/04 at 4:16. But a close up of the numbers in the Pearl (shown here: http://lost.cubit.net/pics/2x21/printout.jpg) shows something like 41602063:05 and 41602064:58. If the last three numbers are the time, then it works out – each number is roughly 108 minutes after the previous one. But the dates don’t match. What date is 4160206?

- What did the computer screen in the Arctic station say?

Delivery Subsystem 550 Requested action taken:
> Received: by with SMTP id m12mr1134484nfg:
> Received: by 10,29.30.1 with HTTP
> Message-ID: Subject: AUTOMATED TEST
> MIME-Version: 1.0
> Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
> Content-Disposition: inline

1bbybby 77111790v****systems normal**** 76555-222-0

zzzzzzz330 7711346 ****systems normal**** QX10022005-CHI



Delivery Subsystem 550 Requested action taken:
> Sent: by with SMTP id m11mr1134484nfg
> Sent: to 10,49.31.1 with HTTP



- What else might I have missed?

The Hurley Bird: http://lost.cubit.net/pics/2x23/hurleyBird.jpg

Penelope’s Address: http://lost.cubit.net/pics/2x23/letters.jpg

Penny was living in Knightsbridge, which is the same city that Lucy Heatherton was living in (Lucy is the girl that Charlie cons in Season 1 - ends up taking a job for her father's copier company).

Countdown Glyphs: http://lost.cubit.net/pics/2x23/completeGlyphs.jpg
- Means “Death”

Charles Widmore: http://lost.cubit.net/pics/2x23/charlesWidmore.jpg

First, there was in the WIDMORE CONSTRUCTION banner in the London skyline in Charlie's flashback "Fire + Water". Then, there was the WIDMORE LABS logo on the pregnancy kit Sun uses. And, finally, Henry Gale's balloon had a WIDMORE LABS logo printed on the side.

- So what can we expect from Season 3?

A whole lot of Others. Where they live, how they came to the island, maybe some back stories (like Henry Gale’s and Alex Rosseau’s). Also, don’t forget that Sayid, Jin, and Sun are very close to them, so I’d expect a search and rescue operation in the works for the premiere.

Also, expect some more lovin’, from Charlie and Claire and hopefully Rose and Bernard.

There could also be some fallout from not having a giant magnet on the island, like Locke not being able to walk.

- So did you like the finale?

Every scene but the one with Libby and the Charlie/Claire scene at the end.

Score (out of a possible 20)
Back Story: 8
Island Story: 9
Total: 17

See you in another life, brothers.


At 4:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

mike...you are the man...I need me some Lost before October....Go Rockets!


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