Wednesday, April 21, 2010

should i stay or should i go?

This is the first episode of LOST this season where we see everyone, all of Jacob's candidates, on the Island and Sideways since the pilot, LA X.

Jack's ping-ponging—it kinda sucks when you're a follower, doesn't it Jack? He's listening to Smokey, talking to Hurley, Kate and Claire, but ultimately decides to go with Sawyer's plan to join Widmore & Co. by boat.
"Nice job, Doc."
And then there's Claire.
"Claire's nuts" I LOVE YOU SAWYER!!! "You, me, Jack, Hurley, Sun, and that pilot who looks like he stepped off the set of a Burt Reynolds movie."
At first I thought this might be a set-up for when they were in the canoe and were shot at in an earlier season, but it's the Elizabeth, Libby's boat, which she gave to Desmond to sail around the world. Desmond is still helping . . .

Kate gets Claire on the boat with the power of love, telling her what she needs to hear, that she, Kate, never should have raised Aaron—it should have been Claire. Sawyer and Kate are sticking together, it seems, on the Island and Sideways.
Claire: "He finds out we're gone, he's gonna be mad."
I hate to admit that I'm loving Jack these days, but I really am. I don't think I've liked him this much since 815 went down. He is open, willing to listen to others, but more importantly, willing to listen to himself. Sawyer tells him to take a (flying) leap of faith (in the ocean.) And he does, but not before apologizing to Sawyer for Juliet's death. Jack hasn't reached Desmond's level of calm, purpose and acceptance, but he's on his way.  Hurley's going to be pissed at Sawyer making Jack take a dive, but sums up the Widmore crew quite nicely, "People trying to kill us again."
Jack: "Doesn't feel right. The Island isn't done with us yet." 
Jack and Sawyer are always at loggerheads. Jack wants to stay, Sawyer wants to leave—sound like any(two)body(s) we know who favor monochromatic wardrobes? At the moment Jack and Sawyer are both painted in shades of gray.

As far as Smokey is concerned, Jack is The Last Recruit of the episode title. Is he also the only recruit in Smokey's eyes?
Claire to Jack: "You joined him the minute you let him talk to you."
Not sure I buy that, but I can see why she does. Smokey "admits" to Jack that he was impersonating his dead father, White Rabbit Cristian. Smokey's such a lying liar from liarville it's hard to listen to anything he says. Actions, like temple massacres for instance, still speak louder than words.

And super hero strength carrying Jack to safety aside, Smokey seems to be losing his touch. He's  unable to communicate with the silent, scribbling Sun. He also seems unable to tell what really happened between Desmond and Zombie Sayid.

Smokey can't read a zombie's mind . . .
"So what did he offer ya?" 
Desmond hit Sayid where it counts, even for a zombie. He asked him if he can tell his true love what he did (blow away Desmond, or didn't he?) to bring her back. Is Sayid still savable? is Claire? They both seemed to take some positive leaps of faith tonight, leaps away from Smokey's tendrils. Sideways, Miles has a recording of Jabroni Sayid on the security cam, a killer no matter what world he is in. Saying a quick farewell to Nadia before he tried to escape the police, Sayid falls (trips) literally for one of the oldest tricks in the book—a string (hose) pulled across a space. Sawyer: "You're under arrest."

Sideways Locke is with Ben, on the way to the hospital and Dr. Jack Shephard. Where coincidentally, Sun and Jin are as well. Sun is terrified (in subtitles) at the sight of Locke, "It's him!" But the couple gets good news Sideways (Sun and the baby are O.K.) and on the Island they get their long overdue reunion, although Jin's promise to never leave Sun again sounded ominous to me, even before Widmore's goons appeared.
"My name is John"
I have been wondering lately when exactly Smokey took over Locke. He told Jack that it happened when Jack brought Locke's dead body to the Island. He also said some very unkind, even if they were somewhat true, things about our favorite fan of all things Island, John Locke. But was Locke just a Smokey chump? Was he so easily duped and led? Or did he actually see Jacob that night in the cabin? Was he the ultimate candidate for a time? is he The Candidate that will be featured in the next episode?

It's tempting to surmise that when Locke was able to get up and walk after the plane crash it was because of Smokey, not Jacob, or the healing powers of the Island. But that idea doesn't jibe with his travels off Island courtesy of the donkey wheel. I guess I think that Locke was always Locke, but was being influenced by Smokey, much like Ben was. The bigger question is: Is Smokey now being influenced by Locke? With all of the candidates having flashes of their parallel lives, maybe Locke can flash into Smokey. Maybe that's what Desmond is enabling. Smokey hasn't gone all smokey in quite a while. Maybe he can't anymore. Maybe that's why he had to pick up Jack and carry him, chase Sun on foot, push Desmond down a well, rather than go on a smokey rampage . . .

Sideways, Jacob stand-in Desmond is with Claire; he's guiding her towards floor 15 where lawyer Ilana (!) has arranged a meeting with half-brother Jack and half-sister Claire. And of course Jack gets interrupted, mid emotional family reunion, getting the call to operate on Locke. Which brings us back to . . . the beginning? The end? Almost? We get a week off, so that's plenty more time to debate and come up with some more crackpot theories . . .

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