Here is the Episode 5.15 - Follow The Leader recap from Erika Olson (aka "e") from LongLiveLocke.com.
What's nice about flashback-free, heavy-on-the-action episodes like “Follow the Leader” is that they’re a blast to watch, yet easy to dissect. Which is especially good news for me, since – as those of you connected to me on Facebook and/or Twitter know – the lower level of my condo flooded with nasty sewer water two hours before the show came on last Wednesday, and I've been dealing with the cleanup ever since. I'm pretty sure Smokey had something to do with it.
Rather than focusing on any one character, the penultimate episode of Season Five spent all of its time on the Island, switching back and forth between the events of 1977 and those of the present day (by Lost’s calendar). I’m going to cover the scenes set in the past first, then the Locke-driven segments, and then end by slightly amending the Finale Theories I included in my last post.
AND IT’S TIME TO HIT THE ROAD
The hour began just liked “The Variable” ended, with Faraday getting shot in the back by his dear old mum. This time, we saw it from Jack and Kate’s perspective out in the jungle. After Kate convinced her ex that charging the Hostiles’ camp in a blind rage was not a good idea, they tried to make a run for it. Unfortunately, Jack soon experienced the Charles Widmore version of a “drive-by,” and was knocked to the ground when his skull became closely acquainted with the butt of a rifle.
After bringing the spoils of his hunt back to camp, Widmore’s dreams of toying with his prisoners were dashed when Eloise informed him that Jack and Kate were not from the Dharma Initiative, despite their snazzy jumpsuits. She ordered her lackeys to take the captives to her tent. And while Jack and Kate waited for Eloise to arrive, things got reeaaaallly interesting.
Why? Because Kate asked The Mad Doctor what he hoped to accomplish by following Faraday’s plan, and his response was something along the lines of, “Erase the last three years – which, by the way, includes meeting you.” He argued that “enough" of that time was out-and-out misery. Kate – rightfully offended -- was like, “You can live your life over and over and over until the end of time, but you will never have anyone as good as me ever again – bastard!”
But honestly, though, I don’t think that Kate’s incredulity stemmed only from thinking about the brief time she was romantically involved with Jack off of the Island. Let’s not forget that for the better part of those three years, she was Aaron’s mom, and she’s now smart enough to realize that that experience was perhaps the most positive thing in her life – one that she didn’t want any part in annihilating. Then, of course, there was also the flash of fear in her eyes when Jack mentioned the possibility of Flight 815 landing in LA as it was "supposed" to in September 2004. Being hauled off to jail by the smug marshal isn’t exactly a scenario that Kate would want to transpire.
And so, the two were at an impasse.
Now, you all know that I don’t give a flying Hot Pocket about the love quadrangle, but I have to say that things are not looking good for anyone out there who’s still hoping for “Jate” to prevail. From Kate’s point of view, why would she ever want to be with a man who just said that he’d like to erase all memory of her? To erase from existence every experience they had together? If any Jaters would like to flame me, all I ask is that you at least include an answer to that question along with your rant.
AND I'VE MADE UP MY MIND
I AIN'T WASTIN' NO MORE TIME
Jack and Kate’s little scuffle came to an end when Eloise arrived and Jack had to try to tell her what was going on. “Your son… he took off his tie. A tie that had special protective powers. Removing it was an accident -- an accident I think we can undo.”
Because Hawking remembered capturing Dan – with his tie on – in 1954, she was sold. Her own handwriting in Dan’s journal didn’t hurt, either.
Now it was just a matter of informing Charles of her plans to head out into the jungle with Richard and the two strangers who had just been caught spying on the Hostiles’ camp. Charles not-so-subtly placed a protective hand on Eloise’s stomach, and whispered something about her “condition” as he urged her in hushed tones to reconsider. The general consensus is that Hawking is pregnant with Daniel in 1977 (unlike what I guessed in my last post -- that he was most likely already born). That would mean that Faraday was eighteen or nineteen years old when he was a professor in 1996… which is I suppose is plausible since we learned in “The Variable” that he was the youngest doctorate to graduate from Oxford. I never really thought that he was five or six years younger than Charlotte, though… but whatever.
Quite frankly, I’m not really interested in sweating the details of these sorts of timelines anymore. But I should probably mention that the only other guesses for who Eloise could be pregnant with are: a) Penny (though most people don’t think that’s the case, as Ben indicated that having a child with “an outsider” was cause for Widmore’s banishment over a decade later, and Eloise is not an outsider), or b) some other character that is yet to be revealed or that we may have already met.
Pregnant or not, Eloise was hellbent on following her future son’s journal instructions. So the foursome made their way to the “pond entrance” of the chamber where Jughead had been stowed away. But that was as far as Kate was willing to go. She probably had time to think about her exchange with Jack while they traipsed through the bush, and she realized that she had to bring in reinforcements to try and stop him.
She took about three steps before a shot rang out. (How many of you thought she’d been hit? I did.) And then another. He of the Black Tank Top to the rescue! The funny thing is that although I’d seen Sayid in the previews for this episode, I was completely surprised when he popped out from behind a tree, gun blazing. Needless to say, I was happy that he’s now reunited with a few of his old peeps.
OK, so maybe Sayid's just back with one of the 815ers. There was really no convincing Kate to stay, especially after she heard that Sayid was disappointed Little Ben had survived. This time, Eloise and Richard were just like, “Ah, what the hell,” when Ms. Austen stomped back toward Dharmaville.
THERE IT IS
First off, let me just say that I would’ve definitely been a goner had my life depended on swimming through the underground tunnel that led to Jughead’s chamber. So kudos to Richard, Eloise, Jack and Sayid for having the lung capacity to get the job done. But are we really supposed to believe that they’re now somewhere directly underneath the Barracks? The tunnel was long… but it wasn’t that long. Maybe they’ve just crossed over to the outer-boundaries of Dharma’s land or something.
Regardless, I guess all that really matters is that Jughead was where Hawking said it would be. It wasn’t technically "buried" as Daniel had instructed in 1954, though. On that note, it’s a complete mystery as to how the bomb got to its present location in the first place.
JACK: You wanna tell me how we're gonna get a bomb out of here?
RICHARD: The same way we brought it in.
JACK: I assume you don't mean through the pool.
RICHARD: It's a 12-foot long, 40,000-pound hydrogen bomb. No, not through the pool.
I’m assuming that the finale will reveal how Jughead was transported to its current location, but in the meantime my guess is that Smokey had something to do with it. We already know how he likes those underground chambers.
Before we revisit what the rest of the 1977ers were up to in this episode, let me share my conflicted thoughts on Ms. Eloise Hawking. From everything we’ve seen of her gray-haired version, we can deduce that she believes that the past cannot be changed – or that it would be disastrous to try to do so. She was upset when she thought Des might veer from his predetermined path when she met him in the antiques store in “Flashes Before Your Eyes.” And she knew she was sending her son to death – by her own hand – when she encouraged him to take Widmore up on his job offer, but she still went through with telling him to go.
However, the forty-year-old version of Ellie clearly believed that there was a way to change the past. She was desperate to turn back time in order to save her son – desperate enough to help Jack attempt to detonate Jughead.
So why the drastic change in Ellie’s beliefs over the next thirty years of her life? Perhaps she came to learn that the universe would course-correct no matter what she did. We got the sense from “Flashes Before Your Eyes” that she’d experienced some part of a time loop over and over and over again. She had not only seen Desmond enter the antique store before, but had also witnessed the man in the red shoes be crushed by scaffolding, or killed in some other way, countless times. (How else would she know he was going to die?) Similarly, she learned that hard way that despite all of her attempts to change the past, she always ended up killing her son. And – more importantly – she realized that doing so was necessary for the greater good. Daniel had to die in order for the "right" chain of events to unfold. The frustrating part is that we Lost fans still don't know exactly what was or wasn't supposed to happen.
On a related note, everyone who hollered at me for being too tough on Ms. Hawking in my last write-up can rest assured that my feelings have softened a bit now that I’ve seen her remorse over her actions at the camp in 1977. You all know that I’ve always suspected some sort of time loop is in effect on the show, and I can’t imagine how it would feel to be a character like Eloise who may actually be fully conscious of that loop and have to experience an awful event like murdering her child – or seeing him die in some other fashion -- time and time again.
Alright, let’s head over to the Barracks, where the action was even more disturbing.
I’M GONNA GIT YOU SUCKA
Not surprisingly, Radzinsky finally snapped and -- in his heightened state of agitation -- was able to usurp control from wimpy Horace. Yet all he could think to do was attempt to beat Sawyer into submission in order to learn what Kate did with Little Ben. Then, of course, Phil stepped in with an idea of his own about how to loosen LaFleur’s lips.
Here is one prediction I’m willing to bet on: Phil will die. Oh, yes. He will die. Not only will he die… his death will be epic.
We’ve seen Sawyer get the beat-down from multiple characters over the years, but until this episode, when Random Hostile (named “Erik” in the transcript) manhandled Kate and Phil slapped Juliet, I don’t believe we’ve ever seen such intentional violence against any of the female Losties. Sayid already blew Erik away, so now it’s only a matter of time before Snarky Phil meets his maker. Will it happen in the finale? I would think so… the interrogation scene is fresh in our minds, which would make watching Sawyer get revenge all the better. Waiting eight months for a Sawyer/Phil showdown once the series returns in early 2010 wouldn't be nearly as satisfying.
I CAN'T KEEP IT A SECRET ANYMORE
I CAN'T HIDE IT 'CAUSE EVERYBODY KNOWS
While things were escalating at the barracks, Dr. Chang spied Hurley shuffling off into the jungle to join Jin and Miles. The three men were trying to decide what to do when Chang popped out of the brush and demanded to know whether or not Faraday had been telling the truth about being from the future. I have to say that this scene -- with Hurley’s ridiculous responses to the scientist’s questions – might just be my favorite funny scene in the entire series. It’s at least in the top five. I just died when Hurley relented, “All right, dude, we're from the future. Sorry.” Classic.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t much of a “moment” between Miles and his father once it was out in the open that they were related, but then again, Chang had to worry about getting Lara and Baby Miles the heck out of dodge. So he ran back to the Barracks and thankfully interrupted Radzinsky’s Sawyer-bashing. In return for a map to the Hostile’s camp, Radzinsky agreed to let Sawyer and Juliet leave the Island.
From the woods, Miles saw Chang force his wife (with Baby Miles in tow) onto the submarine – and being a you-know-what about it in the process. I’m glad that they showed the light bulb go off in Miles’ head as he realized what all of us had already figured for some time: “It's the only way he could get her to leave.”
HEY NOW, HEY NOW
DON'T DREAM IT'S OVER
Next, the Jin/Miles/Hurley trio watched as Sawyer and Juliet also boarded the sub. Hurley figured that Sawyer must have a plan and that he would surely never choose to abandon the rest of them, but I’m thinking that – based on Sawyer’s giddiness about the prospect of buying Microsoft stock and betting on the ’78 Cowboys – he had finally made peace with leaving the Island, and everyone else on it, behind.
Once in the vessel, he and Juliet shared a great moment as they mentally prepared for their new life together back in the “real world.” But – OF COURSE – no sooner had those two re-declared their love for each other than who should show up, but Kate. I'm sure I wasn't the only one who groaned out loud when she climbed down the ladder.
Since we saw the sub begin its journey, I really have no idea what’s going to happen with Kate, Sawyer and Juliet in the finale. Jack’s actions are surely going to affect all of the time-travelers; I maintain that whatever he does – or fails to do – with Jughead will be what sends them back to their rightful year. So I can’t believe that the sub’s going to get too far away from the Island before Kate talks Sawyer into finding a way to break free and return to help their friends. If I were her, I would say something like this: “Jack wants to completely erase the last three years of all of our lives. And if what he does works, the two of you will have never met and you’ll have no memory of your time together. James, you’ll be successfully deported from Sydney to LA, while Juliet will continue to be held captive on the Island by Ben. Are you guys willing to risk Jack succeeding?”
I think we all know what their answer will be.
The scene has certainly been set for some major drama to go down in 1977 during the finale. But it’s not like everyone was singing "Kumbaya" on the Island thirty years later, either...
AND YOU’RE REALLY
A MILLION YEARS OLD
YOU CAN’T FOOL ME
The present-day action kicked off with Ageless Richard, who was working on one of those ship-in-a-bottle thingies. The assumption most people are making is that this must mean there’s a connection between Richard and The Black Rock (the similar looking ship that’s now resting in the middle of the jungle), whereas others just interpreted this scene as another reinforcement that Richard has a lot of time during which he can undertake such complicated hobbies.
Even though I know the mini-ship that Richard was building doesn’t look exactly like The Black Rock, I do think this scene was meant to remind us of that slave ship, as its history definitely has to be explained before the series is over.
Richard doesn’t get much further on his project, however, as he is interrupted by The Return of John Locke. Locke sure knows how to make an entrance, doesn’t he? Much like he carried his dead-father-in-a-body-bag in "The Brig," he marched up the beach with a boar slung over his shoulders when he finally returned to "his people." Only this time, he was no longer desperately seeking their approval – he knew he was their leader, and he was there to take charge.
Ben and Sun were hanging back a bit, and Ben shared with Sun that Richard’s role could be likened to an “adviser.” Interesting. Between that bit of information and some of the things that transpired later between Locke and Richard, I’m starting to get the impression that the Ageless One might not be as all-knowing or powerful as some of us had previously assumed.
All Sun cared about, though, was that Richard had been on the Island in the ‘70s. Richard confirmed that he remembered Kate and Jack from that time because he watched them die. However, he didn’t say anything about also making a deal with Kate in 2004 -- the deal that allowed her and others to leave the Island in return for saving Ben from Keamy’s men. So what's up with that? Is this proof that Whatever Happened Might Not Have Happened?
I’m going to address this in my amended finale theories section at the end of this post. For now, let’s continue on with the present-day Island scenes.
THERE'S NO BEGINNING
THERE'LL BE NO END
Locke got right down to business and began ordering Richard around. They immediately set off (with Ben, per Locke’s request) to help Other Locke with his gunshot wound. As Richard and Ben seemed seriously surprised to see Other Locke stumble into view, I can only assume that they really didn’t understand what had been happening to a subset of the Losties after Ben turned the FDW.
And since it was Locke who instructed Richard to tell Other Locke that he was going to have to die in order to be able to bring all of his people back, two things have been cleared up (kind of):
1) Richard wasn’t getting information from Jacob, or the Island, or anyone else when helping Other Locke. I had previously assumed that Richard had some special knowledge about what was going on with the time-travelers, and knew that the Island would not allow Locke to return after turning the FDW… unless he was dead. Now it seems that we have another "compass situation." Locke and Richard have been passing the compass back and forth over time, so it’s hard to know where the object originated. Similarly, it’s no longer clear if Locke even had to die in order to return to the Island. He just made Richard tell him that because it’s what had always happened.
2) Like Eloise, Ben might be conscious of the possible time loop. Part of me thinks that Ben killed Locke out of hatred and jealousy, and only brought him on Ajira 316 because he knew the ruse of “the Island needs everyone to come back” was the only way to convince Jack to return. In this scenario, Ben never actually thought that Locke would be resurrected, and so all of his shock at seeing his old nemesis alive again is real.
But there’s another part of me that is convinced that Ben has seen all of this play out before. He killed Locke because he knew he had to… because of the conversation he would come to witness between Locke and Richard in the future where Locke states that he must die. Yes, this is confusing, but I believe that if a character knows that they’re in the time loop, they can retain information from both past and future events in that loop. As there is clearly something that both Ben and Eloise are trying to prevent and/or ensure will happen in this loop, they have to be extremely careful about how they go about influencing other characters, and they have to be thoughtful about their own actions as well.
YOU SAY YOU WANT A LEADER
BUT YOU CAN'T SEEM TO MAKE UP YOUR MIND
After they’d finished with the little “errand” of saving Other Locke, Richard, Locke and Ben returned to the Others’ camp. Aside from a group that was over at The Temple, Richard indicated that all of Locke’s new people were with them there at the beach. Hearing this, Locke called everyone over and made a big speech about how he was annoyed that they’d been taking orders from the likes of Jacob without ever seeing him. He then proceeded to invite the group with him to go pay a visit to the mysterious cabin-dweller.
This did not please Richard.
RICHARD: I'm starting to think John Locke is gonna be trouble.
BEN: Why do you think I tried to kill him?
So perhaps now is the appropriate time to address a question I’ve been getting a lot ever since “Follow the Leader” aired. Do I, Erika, the one who named her site Long Live Locke, like the “new” Locke? This may surprise you, but the answer is no. I’m not sure if I’m just freaked out because the more confident he acts, the more I’m convinced that he may be a zombie or Smokey, or if I just simply prefer the Locke who was in love with the Island and believed in destiny but wasn’t so into being “the leader.” All I can hope at this point is that his newfound confidence doesn’t end in disaster.
There’s good reason to worry. Despite what he said to Sun, Locke admitted to Ben that he had no interest in reuniting with the rest of the 815ers. His sole focus is killing Jacob. ?!?! I think Ben’s face at the end of the episode pretty much summed up the audience’s reaction: “Saaaay whhhaaaat?”
Since I’m willing to give Locke the benefit of the doubt, I can only assume that the writers were trying to trick us into believing that destroying Jacob would be “bad,” whereas it might actually be what Jacob needs. Let’s not forget that Jacob asked Locke to “save” him in “The Man Behind the Curtain.” Now that the Island seems to be whispering things in Locke’s ear, maybe The Bald One knows that this is what must be done in order to not only enable Jacob (whoever he is/was) to rest in peace, but also to ensure that the "right" side wins in the war that Widmore believes is coming to the Island. Remember, at the same time Locke is leading his peeps to confront Jacob, Ilana and Bram have taken Lapidus and the other 316ers captive and seem to be gearing up for a fight.
I have one more thought about all of this Jacob stuff, but if you don’t want to know the episode title of the finale, please skip ahead to the next bold-titled section.
Are you episode-title-avoiders gone? Good. For the rest of you, the two-hour season-ender is called “The Incident,” and of course everyone’s been assuming that it refers to the event that necessitates the building of the Countdown Timer o’ Doom at the Swan – the event that releases a ton of energy that Faraday was going to try to counteract by detonating the hydrogen bomb. Whatever Jack does may either prevent this incident… or cause it. However, now that we know Locke’s plans, what if The Killing of Jacob is actually “the incident?” I mean, obviously something’s going to happen back in 1977, too, but a lot of times the episode titles have double meanings, and so I’m pretty sure that if Locke is successful in his attempt to do away with the never-before-seen order-giver, that’s going to have some serious consequences, too.
IS AS GOOD AS MINE
I’m not going to paste in the three finale theories I discussed in my last post, but if you want a refresher before continuing on, you can find them here. Below I’m simply going to tweak them a bit based on things we learned in “Follow the Leader.”
1) Desmond is The Variable
As this theory is based on Desmond making the “wrong” choice at some point during his time on the Island, not much that happened in this latest episode affects it. If only Desmond can change things, then we’ll most likely see Jack fail to set off Jughead and counteract the energy release at the Swan. So it will appear that Whatever Happened, Happened… but next season we’ll see that Des can in fact set things straight. That will involve him having to return to the Island and perhaps choose a side in “the war.” So when Richard said that he watched the Losties die in 1977, that's only because it looked like they were wiped out during the energy release at the Swan, when in reality they simply disappeared as they were transported thirty years into the future.
2) Free Will Wins
Jack is successful in detonating Jughead and preventing the energy release at the Hatch site. However, that has some unintended consequences. The good (?) news is that for the versions of the 815ers that are children in 1977, they will either never get on flight 815 in September 2004, or if they do, the plane will not be brought down by Desmond failing to push the button, because the Swan will never be built in the first place. However, the bad news is that the time-traveling 815ers who are on the Island as adults in 1977 are all going to be killed by the Jughead explosion. So Richard wasn’t lying when he said that he saw them die.
Admit it – that would be a pretty crazy cliffhanger if we saw almost all of the main characters die, right? Sure, in our guts we’d be like, “There’s no way they’re going to stay dead”… but it would still be pretty shocking, especially to the millions of “normal” fans who don’t read Lost blogs or message boards and who haven’t thought about all of this stuff that much. It would definitely ensure that everyone tunes back in for the final season next winter.
However, what does that mean for Season Six? Does it mean that the Island’s version of 2008 that Ben, Locke and Sun are experiencing is one in which the Swan was never built? Is the reason (albeit another "compass-like," circular, confusing reason) why Jack, Kate, Sayid and Hurley didn't end up in 2008 with Sun when Ajira 316 landed because they were already dead in the Island's new timeline? (I really have no idea how that could be explained on the show, but I thought I would throw it out as an idea.)
There would surely be some sort of violent fan uprising if the majority of the main characters remained dead during the bulk of the final season, so I can only assume that Locke, Ben, Hawking, Desmond or Widmore would do something to turn back the clock once again. There's even a crazy theory making the rounds that all of the Losties' dead bodies from the 1977 Jughead blast are what's in Ilana and Bram's crate, and that they'll somehow be brought back to life once the crate is opened. To the people perpetuating that theory, I can only say... have another drink!
3) Destiny Wins
This theory doesn't change very much, except that it needs to account for Richard saying that he saw the 815ers die in 1977. I'll chalk his comment up to the Losties disappearing in front of Richard's eyes during a blast and he interpreted it as them getting blown to pieces and dying.
I will make one more finale prediction, and this is the one I’m standing behind more than all of the other predictions I’ve made this season: I’m completely wrong about what will happen in the finale, and the three theories above will be shot to hell by 7:15 PM CST on Wednesday, May 13th.
BEST LINES OF THE EPISODE
[Locke walks into the Others' beach camp carrying a boar carcass across his shoulders.]
LOCKE: I brought dinner.
LOCKE: [Shouting to Ben, who’s sitting on the beach] Ben, I'd appreciate it if you'd join us.
BEN: [Shouting back] What, John, don't you trust me here with my former people? Afraid I'll stage a coup?
LOCKE: I'm not afraid of anything you can do anymore, Ben.
BEN: Well, in that case, I'd LOVE to come.
DR. CHANG: Your friend Faraday said that you were from the future. I need to know if he was telling the truth.
HURLEY: Dude, that's ridiculous.
DR. CHANG: What year were you born? What year?
HURLEY: Uh... 1931?
DR. CHANG: You're 46?
HURLEY: Yeah. Yes, I am.
DR. CHANG: So you fought in the Korean War?
HURLEY: [Pauses] There's no such thing.
DR. CHANG: Who's the President of the United States?
HURLEY: All right, dude, we're from the future. Sorry.
SAWYER: We'll buy Microsoft.
JULIET: Excuse me?
SAWYER: Then we'll bet the Cowboys in the '78 Super Bowl. We're gonna be rich.
JACK: I didn't think you'd come.
SAYID: Well, if this works, you might just save us all. And if it doesn't? At least you'll put us out of our misery.
LOCKE: I'm not interested in being reunited with my people.
BEN: What do you mean? You told Sun--
LOCKE: I know what I told her, but that's not why we're going to Jacob.
BEN: Then why are we going to Jacob?
LOCKE: So I can kill him.
A FEW MORE THINGS...
- There is going to be an hour-long recap episode entitled "Lost: A Journey Through Time" preceding the finale and beginning at 8 PM EST. The two-hour finale will air at 9 PM EST.
- I'll be participating in a Day of The Finale live chat with Ryan over at Zap2It's Guide to Lost. Those of you who tuned in for our last chat know how much fun it was, so I hope you can join us this time around as well. Here's the link -- be there or be square! It's currently planned for 2 - 5 PM EST on Wednesday. This is a perfect opportunity to goof off at work... and also a great chance for those overseas to join in on the fun.
- Reader Mike P was lucky enough to attend an early screening of "Follow the Leader"... presented at Ohio State University by none other than executive producer Carlton Cuse. Mike P passed along some non-spoilery information from that night's Q&A session, so despite the fact that I'm a little peeved at Carlton for hanging around the campus of my alma mater's sworn enemy, I figured other Long Live Locke and DarkUFO readers might be interested in what was discussed. I've paraphrased Mike's notes below:
Q. What happened to Rose and Bernard?
A. They did not just disappear, we will see them again.
Q. Aside from deciding to make Michael Emerson a permanent member of the cast [I talked about how Emerson was initially only contracted for three episodes a few write-ups ago], are there any other Alternate Versions of Lost stories you can share?
A. One character we'd planned to do more with was Eko, but the actor playing him really did not like living in Hawaii at all and wanted to leave.
Q. Any plans for the Zombie Season? [This is something often joked about in the Official Podcasts.]
A. We've thought about what we could do... maybe something as a Season Six DVD extra, but there are no firm plans.
Q. When will the polar bears be explained?
A. I thought they were fully explained - Dharma was testing how the Island affects "aggression and stuff" with them, after the Purge they escaped the cells, swam over from Hydra Island, bred and made more polar bears, "and then Sawyer shot one." The end.
Q. But what about the one Charlotte found in Tunisia?
A. Oh, yeah, well, hmmm... I dunno. Maybe it wandered too close when someone turned the donkey wheel?
Q. Why did you decide to base the Dharma Initiative in Ann Arbor/the University of Michigan? [For those of you who aren't into sports, the college at which this talk took place, Ohio State, is bitter rivals with U of M.]
A. We needed "a good Midwestern state" and there was an active peace and love and anti-war scene at U of M, and they had good archival footage they could use.
Q. Where are your favorite and least favorite episodes?
A. Favorites: "The Constant" and the Season 5 finale. Least favorite: "Well, this one time we did an entire episode where Jack laid around on a beach, flew a kite, and got tattoos. That's when we figured out maybe we don't need to know absolutely everything about these characters' back stories... We make fun of that episode a lot internally." [The episode is "Stranger in a Strange Land" -- or -- "The One with Bai Ling."]
[I'm going to make the answer to this one invisible in case you consider it a spoiler... highlight it if you'd like to know.]
Q. What about Vincent?
A. "I promise, even if we kill of every single person that's ever been on the show and destroy the Island, Vincent will survive Lost." [e says: Yay!]
Thanks again for sharing this with us, Mike P! Take note, world: Wolverines and Buckeyes CAN get along.
OK, everybody... have a WONDERFUL time watching the last two hours of Season Five – I have no doubt that they will be fantastic.
See you on the other side,