Not a whole lot going on this Thursday night. Locke takes charge of his supplicants. Jack looks tired and conflicted. Hurley looks awkward. Sawyer gets pissed. Ben machinates. And Kate finally settles down as mother to a stolen kid. Tonight’s edition of Lost was relatively pedestrian, by the show’s lofty standards, the plot more filler and setup than anything of significant substance. I shall not let that damper my enthusiasm, nor yours, for analyzing each frame of footage, however.
- Locke takes firm control of the castaways who chose to join him, making it clear that his clan is “not a democracy” in the process. Another Benjamin Linus in the making. The Others themselves saw John as a potential replacement for Mr. Linus last season, which Ben put to an end by shooting him in the gut, but Locke now has a new group to mold to his liking. To what end remains a question mark. His comment to Miles about him being “responsible for the well-being of [the] island” is especially telling. He’s gone from benefactor of the island’s powers to its protector, and he’s likely willing to do whatever it takes to keep the island shielded from external, exploitative forces. He let Kate off the hook for her jailbreak by episode’s end with a mere banishment, but Locke’s shown the ability to mete out much harsher punishment, like, say, a knife in the back. So like Ben, he’ll do whatever it takes to keep the island safe. Unlike Ben, though, he doesn’t yet have all the answers he desperately wants.
- The episode title being “Eggtown,” and with Locke serving Ben a breakfast including “the last two eggs” in Otherville, it’s probably appropriate if I try and figure out namesake. One could view Locke and Ben as being the last two eggs the island gave birth to (there’s a nice image for you)–its’ last two protectors. Both have made it clear, Ben a bit more ruthlessly, that their chief aim is to protect the island at all costs.
Of course, it could also be a reference to Kate’s faux (or not) pregnancy.
- Kate, as we surmised, is now a confirmed member of the Oceanic Six, joining Jack, Hurley and Sayid. Jack’s testimony during her trial reveals bits of the story the Six concocted upon their return to the mainland. Kate was painted as the leader that helped the survivors make it long enough for rescue, giving them hope. “Only eight of us survived the crash.” Why the extra two? Why not just say the six of them were the only survivors? Perhaps they had a couple of bodies to bring home that couldn’t be left on the island? I can’t wait for that explanation. At the end of last episode, Ben alluded to the choice Sayid made to think with his “heart instead of [his] gun.” Did that choice lead to the deaths of those two survivors who weren’t fortunate enough to join the Six?
- The big reveal of the episode was that Kate’s “son” was actually Claire’s kid, Aaron. That might explain Jack’s reluctance at wanting to see him. If Kate came to guardianship over Aaron by less than appropriate means, he doesn’t want any part of it. I find it hard to believe Kate would do anything untoward to Claire, though, so it might be a matter of her having had no choice but to save the child from whatever fate might’ve befell Claire.
And remember long ago, when Claire visited the psychic in Australia who told her she must be the one to raise Aaron or bad shiznit would go down? Well, said shit might be hitting the fan, apocalypse-style, now that Kate’s the one raising the little tyke.
- Safe to say the individual Kate told Jack she had to get back to at the end of last season’s finale was Aaron?
- Faraday divining the values of two of the three facedown Dharma playing cards with Charlotte reminded me of the scene in Ghostbusters where Bill Murray shocks a poor nerd every time he guesses a card wrong. As much as I’d like to discuss the comedic virtues of that all-time classic, the point to note is that this scene hints at some sort of extra-sensory perceptive ability Faraday possesses. Is the island bringing something out of him? Something he expected? Both he and Charlotte clearly seem to have an idea of what’s possible.
- The Book Club is back. Locke give’s Ben a copy of Philip K. Dick’s novel, VALIS.
VALIS is a 1981 science fiction novel by Philip K. Dick. The title is an acronym for Vast Active Living Intelligence System, Dick’s gnostic vision of one aspect of God. [Wikipedia]
Gnosticism refers to a diverse, syncretistic religious movement consisting of various belief systems generally united in the teaching that humans are divine souls trapped in a material world created by an imperfect spirit, the demiurge, who is frequently identified with the Abrahamic God.
“Vast, active, living intelligence system” certainly works for me as a description of the island and its’ true nature.
- Sawyer, sporting his bitchin’ granny glasses, is reading The Invention of Morel, by Adolfo Bioy Casares.
A fugitive hides on a deserted island somewhere in Polynesia. Tourists arrive, and his fear of being discovered becomes a mixed emotion when he falls in love with one of them. He wants to tell her his feelings, but an anomalous phenomenon keeps them apart. [Wikipedia]
No further explanation of that needed.
- How we’ve missed you, no-longer-ubiquitous eye shots.
- Sawyer and Locke start to play a game of backgammon, the latter’s favorite. It was used in season one to allude to the forces of good and evil at odds with each other on the island, and serves in this episode as not only a reminder of that theme, but that the good/evil dichotomy may exist within the ranks of the 815 survivors themselves. We’ve seen Sayid take an apparent turn to the dark side; who knows what other dark times lie ahead.
Boiling it down to more manageable levels, the game sets Sawyer and Locke against each other, and Sawyer doesn’t seem the type to worship a mystical island at the behest of Locke. Look for conflict between these two in the not-too-distant future.
- Sun and Jin makes plans for their future back on the mainland, maybe in Albuquerque, because of its’ close proximity to world-famous “Cliff’s Amusement Park.”
Jin shows us his growing grasp of the English language, while Sun tellingly tells him, “I want to have my baby at home [in Korea].” Jin tries to correct her by saying it’s “our” baby, but in typical Lost fashion, they’re interrupted before Sun can respond. Whose baby is Sun carrying after all?
- I was thinking last week that Ben must have significant financial means at his disposal, based on his apparently frequent trips to the mainland and his ability to run a wetworks operation with Sayid once everyone is “rescued.” Miles further augments that thinking by demanding Ben pay him $3.2 million to keep his life-or-death status and whereabouts a secret from whomever contracted the team to find him in the first place. Why $3.2M? is the obvious first question.
Other Stuff from Other Sites
- Okay, maybe I was reaching with my discussion of eggs.
Egg-town is a pejorative term that refers to the days of bartering. A traveling salesman would have to barter his candy or tobacco or shoelaces for different commodities. A poor exchange would be for eggs, a relatively common item that is also highly perishable. Nobody wants to trade for eggs from a traveling salesman because they have their own, so the salesman who accepted an egg in exchange was forced to accept a bad deal. Salesmen would use the term like “If I were you I would stay away from Bogart. That’s an egg-town.” Of course, the lack of trust among salesman was also high, and it was likely that one salesman would lie to another about the quality of a town’s customers to keep them for himself. Invariably, the second salesman ventures into to Bogart only to find it is truly an egg-town. He is either persuaded to not visit a town that has good customers or is tricked into visiting a town that can only offer eggs. The term “egg-town” represents a deal with undesirable outcomes in either case. [Lostpedia]
- Some clarification on the Naomi/Elsa bracelet comparison from last week:
DAMON LINDELOF: Naomi’s bracelet in the Sayid episode is a key point here. I got some e-mails from people who wondered if there was a connection between Naomi’s bracelet and the bracelet worn by the woman Sayid killed in his flash-forward. There is no connective tissue. Sometimes a bracelet is just a bracelet. We just thought it would be a cool emotional touchstone for Sayid; Elsa’s bracelet reminds him of Naomi. But some people interpreted that, ”Is there something more there?” We might need to address that. [EW]
That’s all for now. I’ll leave you wondering just where the helicopter’s gone to (caught in the same rift in time that caused Faraday’s payload to be 31 minutes late last week?), and why Minkowski isn’t answering the sat-phone back on the freighter (preoccupied with new directives from the mainland conspirators?). I’m gonna go have some late-night eggs.