Friday, May 9, 2008

Lost: Cabin Fever

This is one of those strange episodes of Lost in which you don't realize until after the episode is done that it was actually a really, really good episode. During the episode, I just kind of watched with glazed anticipation. But now that I'm pouring through my notes, the episode was amazing! Oh, how weird. Let's get to the necessarily-long recap.

FlashBACK 1: A teenage Emily - a Buddy Holly fan - is going out with a man twice her age who "loves her," despite her mother's objections. She runs outside in the rain and is hit by a car. (We don't know who hit her. Presumably irrelevant, although, that's assuming a lot on a show like Lost.) Switch to hospital, where Emily tells staff that she is six months pregnant - the first time she's admitted it to anyone, apparently. There's a short delivery scene, but Emily can't hold her premee child, he's whisked away to N.I.C.U. But before he goes away, Emily yells "Name him John!" John Locke.

FlashBACK 2: Hospital again. Baby John, although being a premee, has survived just about every type of infection and disease there is at a hospital. He is called a "miracle baby." Emily is given the opportunity to hold baby John for the first time. Emily freaks out and runs away. Emily's mom asks if they can give John up for adoption, as she tries to light a cigarette inside a hospital. Grandma Locke is cold, folks. Cold. As Grandma tries to outdo Dina Lohan as Mom of the Year, she sees a very creepy looking Richard Alpert looking through the window. And no, Alpert doesn't look younger. He looks the same.

FlashBACK 3: John is five, maybe? He's in another foster home and a girl his age hates backgammon. HATES. Foster mom lets ALPERT in to talk to John, about admitting him to a school for "special" and "gifted" children. (Chilton?) The test involves setting out a bunch of subtext-rich items - like a "Book of Laws" and a container of sand - and asking John which of those items already belonged to him. John chose the knife. Alpert, MAD, storms off, saying that John doesn't belong there. Alpert actually kind of freaks out. Also scarring John emotionally for life. Jerk.

FlashBACK 4: In high school, John is the kid who gets stuck in lockers. A counselor/adviser/plot device encourages John to attend a summer camp at Mittelos Bioscience. John freaks, saying that acting like a science nerd is what would continue to get him pushed into lockers. Mr. PlotDevice said that he got the brochure from a "Dr. Alpert." "I'm not a scientist!" John yelled. "That's who you are," said the mysterious high school man. "You can't be... a superhero." "Don't tell me what I can't do!" declared John.

FlashBACK 5: Locke, post-accident. After a tough day of physical therapy, he is being wheeled around the hospital to who knows where, as an orderly talks about how anything is possible and yadayada, we don't care until we realize the person talking is Matthew Abbadon. He and Alpert, together in one show? Makes for the creepiest hour EVER. Abbadon asks Locke if he believes in miracles. Locke doesn't. Abbadon says he does, and then fakes out the audience by making us think he'll push Locke down the steps and my heart pounded fast CRAP THAT WAS SCARY. Instead, Abbadon talks to Locke about going on a "Walkabout" and how it "changed his life." Locke scoffs at first, but then starts to seem convinced later on about it. Abbadon says that it will completely turn his life around. And then leaves by saying "when you and me run into each other again, you'll owe me one." CREEPY McCREEPSTER! Ew.

The Freighter: Keamy & company arrive back on the boat, post-Smokey damaged. The dead doctor is there, ALIVE. Keamy wants to know how many people are on the island, but Sayid, wisely, does not volunteer that information. Keamy ask Captain Gault who "gave me up." Gault: "MICHAEL!" Michael confirms that he knows who Keamy is, and that he's Ben's mole. Keamy tries to kill Michael, but, of course, the island won't let him, so his gun doesn't work on him. So he just pistolwhips him. Welcome back, Harold Pennireau?

Later that night/day, Mahey dies. Keamy tells Frank to gas up the chopper. Gault thinks Keamy might have "I'm crazy!" island sickness. Keamy doesn't think so. He just has "second protocol," which involves a DHARMA folder. Since when does Widmore supply his men with DHARMA folders? Keamy mutters that Ben only has "one place to go," and then mentions "torching the island." Gault is mortified. Gault tells Sayid and Desmond to hide. Sayid instead wants a small boat to help save islanders. Gault agrees!

Frank talks to Michael, where we realize that Frank is a conspiracy buff, and that he doesn't think that the 815 wreckage is real, but laughs that Widmore planted it? I... it was a throwaway scene, honestly. Michael warns that Keamy will kill EVERYONE! Keamy struts his abs in front of everyone (shameless, producers. Shameless.) while attaching a metronome to his arm. (Okay, so maybe it's a bomb?) Gault gives Sayid the boat, and a working compass. Desmond won't leave the boat, saying that she spent three years on the island, so he doesn't exactly want to step foot on it again. (That's fair.) Sayid leaves. Say, that boat looks kind of small. Like it only has room for... six?

Night. Omar tells the doctor that he's dead. Doctor: "Uh... okay?" Frank asks why the mercs are loading up napalm or whatever we would see if the scene wasn't set at nighttime. Frank then boldly declares that he won't fly them. So Keamy, ticked, slices the doctor's throat. Thereby killing him, in... the island's past? Future? Gault then appears, shooting a gun. ("I fixed your gun!" he quipped.) Keamy warns that Gault does NOT want to shoot him. So Keamy kills Gault! The cool guy with the accent! Sad face. Frank, freaked, agrees to fly them out now. But he carefully wraps up a satellite phone into a container, then drops it onto the Losties beach as they fly overhead. Now Jack & company can now track where Keamy and his men are going. Convenient! If only Frank could drop something onto Jack, so he doesn't keep moving around and almost tearing out his stitches. Man, was Juliet mad! Good for her.

Team Locke: First segment: pure exposition. No lie. Then Locke wakes up to see Horace Goodspeed chopping wood. He's building a place for him and his wife, as a break away from the "D.I." (DHARMA Initiative.) He then says "You gotta find me, John. And when you do, you'll find him. Jacob. He's been waiting for you a long time." Horace repeats, literally, and the trees he chopped down reappear for him to chop down again. Then LOCKE WAKES UP. So he's not actually alive after 12 years? Sad face. Ben also has a sad face, saying that he "used to have dreams."

Hurley questions why he is with Locke and Ben. Locke tells Hurley that he is "special," because he can see the cabin. Hurley thinks all three of them can see it because "we're the craziest." Locke then talks about how DHARMA suddenly just disappeared off the island, and Ben stops in his tracks and looks mad. They are suddenly in front of the mass grave, where Locke finds Goodspeed's body. But not before outing Ben as a mass murderer to Hurley. Inside Goodspeed's pocket is a map to a cabin. Forgetting the map is now at least twelve years out of date, and the cabin can MOVE, Locke assumes this will lead him to the cabin correctly.

Ben then corrects Locke, telling John that he didn't order the purge. Locke snaps back that Ben is the leader of the others. Ben says "not all of the time." Locke offers Hurley a chance to leave now, since he can get to the cabin without Hurley's help. Hurley quickly surmises that his chances of death are equal, if not lessened, if he stays with Ben and Locke. So he stays. Ben comments to Locke how John made it sound like it was Hurley's decision, when it wasn't. Locke pretends that he's not becoming the new Ben.

Locke later tells Ben that he's sorry Alex died and everything. Ben says that it's destiny. And that "destiny is a fickle bitch." He says although he is a "chosen one," there are still consequences that must be paid. But he is no longer a chosen one. Locke is. Or so Ben the manipulator says.

They arrive at the cabin. Ben and Hurley stay outside and share a candy bar. (It was hilarious.) Locke lights a torch and goes inside the cabin, completely ignoring the fact that Jacob hates light. Idiot. Inside Locke meets Christian Shephard, of all people. Jack's dad is now speaking on Jacob's behalf. He asks Locke why he is there. "I'm here because I was chosen to be," said Locke. "That's absolutely right," comments Christian. (They're both Calvinist!)

Suddenly, a female voice says "Hi, John." It's Claire, looking really relaxed. Like she's drunk, high, dead, or D) all of the above. Christian asks Locke to not tell people that Claire is there. He says that people "aren't ready yet." He then realizes the episode is almost done and asks Locke for one question to be answered. Locke asks "how do I save the island?" Both Christian and Claire smirk like a couple of drunk idiots.

Locke exits the cabin later, saying he knows what to do. "He wants us to move the island." END.

Questions & Comments
- Was Cooper really conning a 16-year-old Emily? That's just cold.
- Bad parents seem to run in the Locke family. Bad dad, bad mom, bad grandma... I think we should be grateful John isn't a dad himself! (...that we know of.)
- As a baby, John Locke survived through impossible odds. He survives falling 16 stories later on in life. Damaged, but, survived. He and Michael now have increasingly similar backstories, and both are not "allowed" to die. But why? And how?
- This episode seemed to reinforce that Locke needs to believe in miracles. Will faith be the key to his moving the island?
- I just noticed... we've never met Sawyer's parents, have we? Did Sawyer like his parents before they died? What a weird Lost character!
- Early in the episode, Hurley asked "who builds a cabin in the middle of the jungle?" The answer: Horace Goodspeed.
- Does the map change when the cabin moves?
- Is the magically moving cabin a small-scale island? Can it's moving properties be applied to the island as a whole? (And does moving the island involve Alcatraz?)
- Who was the "other leader" that Ben was referring to?
- Is Christian Shepard actually Jacob? He claimed to be speaking on his behalf, then said he would grant one request. This sounds an awful lot like the Wizard of Oz...
- OBVIOUS QUESTION OF THE WEEK: How do you move an island?
- Is Sayid's Zodiac boat how the Oceanic Six escape the island?
- Will the island be torched?
- What is up with Claire? Is she dead? Is she alive? Is that Claire, or a Smokey interpretation, a la Yemi?
- Is Sawyer dead? (Oh, he just didn't have a scene this week? Okay, thanks!) But seriously, is he dead?
- What has Jacob wanted Locke to do, to become, all his life?
- Does Alpert ever age?
- Can Abbadon be any more creepy? He and Alpert need their own show where they stare at people. It would be the scariest thing since that in-bred house episode of The X-Files.

Next week: Guys, did you pause the preview? There's a standoff in the jungle with ALPERT! ALPERT! Next week is part 1 of a 3-part finale. Lost airs Thursday nights at 10 p.m. on ABC.

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