NOTE: These were initially posted a couple of days ago, but they seemed to cause some glitch on the site because of the code used. So we had to remove them, but they are back! So enjoy the double recap from Anna.
Dear Readers: In the interest playing catch up, I have combined my take on “Happily Ever After” and “Everybody Loves Hugo” together into this single article. Thanks so much for everyone who has been asking about the recaps. I hope once you read this you will find it worth your time as well as the wait. By the way, since it’s a double-episode article, it’s a LONG one, so grab a glass of your favorite Dharma beverage, hunker down, and enjoy!
INTRO: The Gold in the Mountain of Our Madness
In what would now appear to have overtaken “Ab Aeterno” as the best episode of season 6 thus far, , “Happily Ever After”, took a heady turn as the story of Desmond Hume was finally continued. It’s been a long wait, as the last we saw of poor Desmond, he was in the hospital after having been shot by Ben back in the season 5 episode, “The Variable”.
“Happily Ever After” was written by Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, and they really outdid themselves with this one. In a season that has been heavily tinged with the concept of faith and rife with religious references, science-fiction fans finally got their payoff with what can be seen as a companion piece to both “Flashes Before Your Eyes” and “The Constant”.
There was very little time spent on the Island in this installment, as once again Desmond’s special consciousness-jumping abilities were at play here, and just as in the past episodes mentioned, we had a bit of flashing to and fro happening for most of the hour. It really felt like an episode from one of the earlier seasons of LOST as well; there was no Jacob and no Man in Black to worry about. However, the shocks came fast and emotions ran high as at last so many of our questions in regards to Timeline-X and its relationship to the Regular Time-line were given a new depth and an interesting hint of clarification.
(Please note: From this point on, in order to save some time, “Time-line X” will be shortened to “TLX”, and the “Regular Island Time-line” will be denoted with “RTL”.)
Waitin' for a Superman
Poor Desmond. I mean, we all knew the Island wasn’t finished with him, and Charles Widmore made sure that was indeed going to play out. At some point Widmore had him kidnapped from the hospital, drugged, code-named “The Package”, and given a submarine ride to the Island. Of course I think I too would become a bit violent if the first thing I woke up to after that was Zoe. Not to mention, that enraged lip quiver Desmond showed as Widmore broke the news that they were back on the Island was COMPLETELY EPIC and deserves an Emmy in and of itself. Widmore also deserved that hearty beating Des gave him before being subdued by Charles’ ultra-lame band of gun-toting goons.
We soon learned that ol’ Charles had been preparing some type of experiment, and Desmond was about to be the main test subject. He explained to Jin that Mr. Hume was the only person on earth that he knew of who had survived a “catastrophic electromagnetic event”, and he needed to ensure that wasn’t just some fluke. Something larger is definitely in the works here; if we remember Zoe needed some information from Jin in regards to the pockets of electromagnetic activity around the Island. At this point, without more information, the only thing that I can think of is that Widmore is perhaps creating some type of a trap, or even has devised a way to kill the Man in Black. I could almost see Desmond as the bait that could lead MIB to his demise, serving as Widmore’s “Shaggy” in a plan right out of the ol’ “Scooby-Doo” playbook.
However, I still do not entirely believe that Widmore is on Team Jacob, either. I think Widmore will always be on Team Widmore, and could just as easily be planning to use Desmond’s ability for his own selfish reasons; i.e. ultimate control of the Island.
One thing I feel the need to ask here is how Widmore knew of Desmond’s talent for surviving catastrophic electromagnetic events, such as the Swan Hatch implosion. My only guess here is Ms. Hawking. She was the one who was right in place and time at that jewelry store during Desmond’s first flash backwards through time. More on her own special “talent” in a bit…
Redneck School of Technology
The last time Widmore assembled a team for “security” on the Island, he put together a most frightening group of mercenaries head up by the beast, Martin Keamy. This time, he brought a horrifying team of….scientists. No wonder they are so very un-threatening when they brandished firearms. This group was definitely not very adept at working under pressure, either, as Widmore decided to move up the timetable on their regularly scheduled plan of events and sent them into a tizzy.
They also don’t seem to be very bright, or at least they’re also horrible at safety protocols. One doofus even flipped the switch while another one of his colleagues was inside Widmore’s Electromagnetic Funhouse, resulting in one very crispy scientist. I was totally expecting to see Brundle-Fly come out of that box at first, but alas, no such luck. Everyone seemed wrecked by what had happened except for Widmore, who remained cold and focused on the overall task at hand. Removing Original Recipe Dead Guy from the fryer right in front of Desmond did wonders for making sure he kept calm and had no worries at all when he was then strapped to a chair and then locked inside, alone.
But not before Widmore gave Desmond a little speech about the sacrifices he has had to make in his efforts to “protect” the Island, and whatever is at stake if the MIB is not stopped from leaving it. He lost his son, the love and respect of his daughter, and the chance to know his grandson. He did leave out the part about all the deaths he is responsible for, and the fact that he also made the sacrifice of their lives. Charles then told Desmond he was going to ask for him to also make a sacrifice, and once again made it clear that some heavy stuff is going to go down if Des does not comply with this request when the time comes.
Feeling Yourself Disintegrate
So much went through my mind during this quick sequence. When I first saw that chair, I immediately figured they were somehow trying to summon Jacob, or force him to materialize in some way. I loved how fast Desmond was able to bust free from it though, making me think again that Team Widmore should have probably brought a more recently-made chair instead of using one that had been dry-rotting in the Hydra station for the last couple of decades. Just remember, no metal objects!
The actual machine reminded me of the photos I have seen of the Large Hadron Collider. The effects in this scene were pretty decent, even as Desmond looked like he was in horrible pain as he was bombarded with deadly amounts of energy. The thought came to my mind that he had literally become The Golden Child at that point; the unlikely savior, the “Fix It Man” for all that had gone wrong on the Island so far. How ironic for a man who once caused the crash of Flight 815 and who then completely abandoned the idea that the work he was doing on the Island pushing that Hatch button was ever helping to somehow “save the world”.
I Was Zapped by the Lucky Super Rainbow
It was pretty obvious that Desmond was going to have another one of his consciousness time-trips; however I did not expect him to end up in his X-Head. We surfaced in TLX just as Desmond was staring at his reflection, as he seemed to be “coming to” right after Flight 815 had landed in LA. At baggage claim he briefly reunited with Claire-X, a woman whose life he had saved back in season three, once from drowning and once from a lightning storm. Desmond’s RTL knowledge bled through a little as he correctly guessed her expected child would be a boy, and then proceeded to reunite with George-X, as in Minkowski from Widmore’s freighter crew. We remember him as the first man Desmond met who had also fallen victim to the electromagnetic time-crazies, and who later died as a result of not having a constant for his mind to ground itself with.
Come to find out, George was taking on a very Mathew Abaddon-like role as Desmond’s driver and employee of Widmore-X. How wild it was to find out that not only was Desmond working for Widmore in this iteration, but that they also shared a kinship not unlike father and son? Once again Charles’ office was ripe with nods and winks to the Island, from the sailboat model Desmond was seen staring at, to the lovely painting of scales with one black stone and one white stone on opposing sides just like the scales seen in the MIB’s cliff-wall cave. (Yes, I do believe that cave was MIB’s abode and not Jacob’s.)
Boy, Widmore laid it on THICK for our man, Des, too. Charles gave him a hug, and mentioned how Des was his top employee, blessed for not having the attachments that root one to a place such as a family. He even went so far as to then toast to Mr. Hume’s “indispensability” as Number One with a healthy shot of his prized MacCutcheon whiskey, something in the RTL Widmore had teased Desmond with as being too good for a such a failure of a man. I got the feeling that Widmore-X was in some way repaying Desmond for his service, or indispensability in the RTL in a very "Through the Looking (Whiskey) Glass" sort of way. In fact, the entire scene practically mirrored the one we had been given in season three’s “Flashes Before Your Eyes”.
It was almost too perfect, this new relationship between Desmond and the father of his bride to be, Penelope. Except in TLX, darling Penelope was completely unknown to Des. Oh well, I suppose a person can only be close to one member of the Widmore family at a time on LOST.
One odd thing that must be mentioned is that in the season premiere LA X, Desmond was seen on Flight 815 wearing a wedding ring. However, in this episode, Desmond-X did not have one on at all and several references were made to the fact that he was single.
Is this further evidence that the time-line(s) are still in the process of being altered? Could it be like all of the other bizarre items that have moved, or have been reversed, or have disappeared altogether throughout the show since the very beginning; some kind of butterfly-effect that alludes to the repercussions of altering the past, whether it be one time-line or the other? Is this going to somehow relate to what Daniel later talks about in this episode; about how they somehow changed things by setting off Jughead?
And finally, are the actions of our characters, namely Desmond, in one or even both time-lines still changing things? I do hope this is one mystery that is not dropped into the Ether of the Unsolved on LOST. Those re-arranging staircase photo frames from Miles’ ghost-busting flashback episode still bug me to this day!
Arguably the biggest reveal of the season so far, besides Richard Alpert’s history and the “cork = Island” metaphor, came through the scene in “Jax” Bar (complete with a Kangaroo logo) where Charlie challenged Desmond about his supposedly “happy” life. We then discovered that back on Flight 815, Charlie, in the bathroom, with the heroin, was not at all trying to commit suicide. He just got a wee bit paranoid at the sight of that Marshall with Kate, and decided to swallow his baggie right as the airplane hit turbulence. Once again the rock god went down via asphyxiation; down deep and into near-death unconsciousness.
During his time down under, Charlie experienced a vision of sorts. He saw a gorgeous blonde with whom he shared “consciousness-altering love”. I suppose it is safe to guess this person was Claire. But he didn’t just see that they were in love, and always had been as if it was pre-destined. He truly felt it.
Charlie somehow knew that there was a Greater Truth to what he had seen when he was knocked out, as if fate itself struck him in the face from his own knuckles where it was once written. Mr. Pace saw the mirror reality, the Real Time-Line, and after that moment every part of his being then wrote off the TLX he was living in as something unworthy of his efforts. This would explain his behavior from the moment he woke up and told Jack he should have let him die, to his death-wish Frogger-game through heavy traffic when Desmond arrived to pick him up from the police station.
Finally, we now know for sure the connection between the RTL and TLX, and that for some of our characters it is actually seeping through to the point where they are starting to remember. Even better, Love seems to be a main catalyst. The effects this will have on the RTL characters is yet to be seen. But it should get quite interesting if they too begin to realize there are additional versions of themselves in a timeline that now appears as if it was never meant to be.
Chrome Plated Suicide
On the way to the engagement where Charlie was scheduled to play with Widmore’s musically-gifted son, he and Desmond had a lovely discussion about choice. So many times we have seen this in LOST, as the show seems to have built itself upon the foundation of the entire Fate Vs. Free Will debate from philosophy. However, Charlie really wanted Desmond to understand what he had been trying to tell him in regards to their current state of reality, and pulled a bit of a “Jacob” in this scene. He told Desmond he has a choice, and then proceeded to give him a little push…by grabbing the steering wheel and heading right into the nearby marina (where RTL Desmond had been shot by Ben), car and all.
It is in this scene where Desmond (once again) tried to rescue Charlie from drowning that his memory of the RTL is finally sparked. All it took was Charlie’s hand to the car window and BUH-BLAM Desmond saw the “Not Penny’s Boat” message written when our favorite bassist died in season three’s “Through the Looking Glass”. Desmond was of course extremely shaken by this sudden flash of a memory that was from somewhere else. Charlie’s plan to wake Desmond up and open his eyes to the reality he was in completely worked.
On a quick side-note, I believe the one of the overall themes in LOST is not “Fate Versus Free Will”, but rather it should be seen as “Fate AND Free Will”. Again, we need both opposites to form the Whole, just as I have mentioned before that people are always going to have a little bit of both “Good” and “Bad” in them. The message of LOST is not really just a focus on opposites, but it shows us how they are reconciled within a person, within each of us throughout our lives. For this is how the Universe rolls.
It’s all one big Donkey Wheel of Yin and Yang, baby!
The Abandoned Hospital Ship
Of course, a local car accident would not be complete without a trip to St. Sebastian’s Hospital. Desmond’s second and more intense set of flashes to the RTL came from a ride through a magnetic scanner in the form of an MRI machine. This is the point where he saw Penny, and most likely felt their love just as Charlie experienced his relationship with Claire when he was unconscious.
Desmond’s abilities come from exposure to that original “catastrophic” Swan Hatch implosion, so it makes sense that further bombardment with electromagnetism would cue even more memories. I loved how the MRI technician gave him a BUTTON to push in case of panic, which he used with a quickness and then high-tailed it out of there to find Charlie. Desmond was totally spooked, and he needed to know for sure that what he was seeing had some grounding in some kind of reality, even if it wasn’t the one he was currently living in. And since Mr. Pace and his death-defying underwater vehicle stunt was the initial catalyst, Desmond went on a mission to track him down. Well, for that reason and for the fact that Desmond thought Charlie had tried to kill him.
As Desmond stood at the nurse’s desk and asked about Charlie’s whereabouts I turned to my other half and said, “I bet we’ll see a Jack cameo…”, but before I could finish the sentence, out he walked right on cue into the scene. Unfortunately Jack couldn’t help Desmond on his Pace-hunt, but it was nice that they ran into each other again, and I’m sure it won’t be the last time in TLX they meet, either. How many lives have these two bruthas now met each other in, anyway?
Do You Realize??
Cue a hospital-gowned and crazy-eyed Charlie, who dashed and darted through the hallways yelling, “None of this matters! None of this matters!” as the staff, and Desmond, chased behind him. Hysterical!
When Desmond finally cornered him, Charlie admitted he was trying to show Desmond something. Desmond demanded to see Charlie’s hands. With a sly grin Charlie asked Des, “You felt it, didn’t you?”, and then refused to accompany him to the concert that he was scheduled to play. Charlie then repeated the mantra once more at Des, “THIS doesn’t matter. None of this matters! All that matters is that WE FELT IT.” Desmond was stunned with that deer-in-headlights type of expression, and as Charlie walked off, he suggested that Des stop worrying about him and start looking for Penny.
Now I no longer feel bad for being unable to truly connect in an emotional way with the TLX. Shall I repeat what Charlie said once more? Feel free to join me here: “NONE OF THIS MATTERS!!!”
Ah the sweet, sweet smell of reveal!
Love the World You Find
After losing Pace, Widmore tasked Desmond with being the one who would break the news to his wife, who had been working on the big event. Surprise! Ms. Hawking from the RTL is now Mrs. Widmore-X. What an interesting twist that the “complicated” couple would still be together in this incarnation of their relationship. In addition from the way everyone acted, from Big Daddy Charles, to George Minkowski Driver Extraordinaire, to the party staff, Eloise was the one who ultimately wore the pants in the Widmore family.
With her huge, white Hair-Helmet of Higher Power and her butter-knife Nazism, Eloise was refreshingly cool about Drive Shaft’s inability to perform at the event, and accepted the “unpredictability” of working with rock stars. As she let Desmond off the hook, she even threw out Dan Faraday’s old mantra, “What happened, happened”, which we would soon learn to be oh so ironic in oh so many ways.
Eloise however did not predict Desmond would hear the name Penny Milton called from a guest list nearby and actually quesion it. In a huff she pulled Desmond aside and privately began to scold him for looking for whatever it was he was seeking. She demanded that he STOP, as someone had affected the way he was “seeing things” (i.e. Charlie). Furthermore she told Desmond that she didn’t understand why he would be looking for anything, as he already had a “perfect life” and had managed to attain the one thing he had apparently always wanted, her “husband’s approval”. I loved how Desmond refuted her claim to know what it was that he really wanted.
Overall the scene was a great shocker, as once again Eloise revealed herself to have more information about Desmond, his life, and their current “reality” than she ever should have. This completely mirrored her RTL role as advisor to Desmond and his ultimate Island destiny back in “Flashes Before Your Eyes”.
By the sounds of it, someone or something might have actually created TLX and set Desmond up with what they/it thought he wanted most in the RTL. LOST’s mysterious double time-line had just become even more delicious with the meeting of these two characters who both seemed to be able to step beyond the bounds of time itself. Even Eloise’s pin seemed to echo the fact that she knew that there are two timelines, as she wore two parallel lines of silver with a starburst-like explosion at a point along each one. Jughead, anyone?
During their conversation, Ms. Hawking/Widmore also told Desmond that what he was doing by seeking out Penny was a “violation”. A violation of what, “The Rules”? Whose “Rules”...Jacob’s? I wonder. Call me crazy, but I am getting bad vibes from the White-Haired Wonder. As in, I am starting to wonder if she is somehow in cahoots with The Man in Black.
Based on what we have seen, it is MIB, not Jacob, who has been going around making promises to everyone in order to woo them to his ragged court of merry men. He told Claire she would see Aaron again, Sayid that he would see Nadia, Sun would be reunited with Jin, Sawyer could leave the island, and so forth. Is it possible that at some point, perhaps way back in the past after she shot Daniel, that MIB came to her as well and made a similar bargain?
This could potentially explain why all throughout Daniel’s life Eloise had been grooming him for his “destiny”, pushing him away from his love of music and instead towards science and ultimately the Island. It could also explain why she seems to know so much, more than anyone, and why she is constantly showing up at important decision-making moments in Desmond’s life, to ensure he continues on the proper path.
That path would be the one that would eventually help free the Man in Black and possibly create this “alternate” reality at the same time. As Ms. Hawking, she once told Desmond that pushing the Swan Hatch button would be the most important thing that he would do in his life. For if it wasn’t for Desmond being on the Island and being the one to allow the system failure at the Swan hatch, John Locke - the man MIB needed to find his loophole - would have never crashed there in the first place.
Of course I could be totally wrong here, but it is just very odd to me that she seems to be the only character in LOST that knows what is going on throughout both timelines. It is possible that some of her fore-knowledge came from owning Dan’s journal after she shot him back in the 70’s. However this does not explain her actions in TLX. I am definitely keeping my stink-eye on that woman now. In my view, if she was really one of the “good guys”, then she would want Desmond to find his love and wake up from the manufactured dream-world that TLX seems to now be.
She also told Desmond he is not “ready”. Does something have to happen in the RTL for Desmond to be ready to accept his role in TLX? Part of me doesn’t want to read too much into this line in particular. To me it sounds like Eloise being Eloise and talking down to him as she had before in that “knower of all things” kind of way.
Girl with Hair Like an Explosion
As a defeated Desmond stuck his tail between his legs and prepared to drink himself into oblivion, a knock came to the limo window from one Mr. Daniel Faraday…I mean, Widmore. I think I heard the entire East Coast viewing audience exclaim upon the sight of Our Beloved Physicist!
Except in this incarnation, Dan had been able to fulfill his dreams of being a musician, as he had been the one scheduled to play a classical piece with Charlie’s rock band. Even in TLX, Daniel enjoyed a little experimentation. You see, some things never change, no matter what the filmstrip says in Room 23.
Daniel immediately asked Desmond if he believed in “love at first sight”, and began to tell a tale of his own recent experience with the idea. He went on to describe a striking, blue-eyed, red-haired beauty at the local museum, eating a chocolate bar, which was a dead-on (no pun intended) description of his RTL love lost, Charlotte. Dan claimed it was as if he had “already met her” and “already loved her”. This story pretty much echoed what Charlie had relayed to Desmond earlier at the bar.
That same night, while he was presumably in a near-unconscious state, Dan woke up and scribbled some ultra high-level quantum mechanics equations into his journal. He claimed to have no knowledge whatsoever of what it all really meant, as he was just a musician.
However just like Charlie, he too got the sensation that their current lives in TLX were not proper, not correct. Daniel was able to go even further and proceeded to tell Desmond that he believed he had somehow, somewhere, set off a nuclear bomb in the effort to avoid some type of major catastrophe. He theorized that this is what had somehow caused them to now be in a different reality. Dan said to Desmond, “What if this…all this…wasn’t supposed to be our life?” and that, “for some reason we changed things”.
I loved that the page from Daniel’s journal was also quite relevant. If one looked closely, it was the page which contained that diagram from the RTL journal that mentioned “Real Space” and “Imaginary Time”. It almost would seem this exactly mirrors the situation we now have on LOST overall where the whole has splintered into the two.
The Secret of Immortality: This Strange Feeling, This Impossible World
I also find it fascinating that so far the only characters to truly begin to see through the TLX reality on their own are Charlie and Daniel, two people who happened to have also died in the RTL. Whereas our other castaways have only demonstrated faint acknowledgement in fits and spurts (often sparked by looking into the mirror) these two men have experienced more than a glimpse to the point of being able to recognize the TLX as being something false. I believe this is due to their proximity to the unconscious, as Charlie’s visions came to him during a near death experience, and Daniel’s quantum epiphany came to him in a dream.
In LOST, unconsciousness and even death seems to be a portal of sorts; to where is left to our imagination. I like to refer to as The In-Between. My favorite example remains from the episode “?” where Charlotte Malkin was pronounced dead, and then came back to life while screaming John Locke’s name. She then later approached Eko with a word from his dead brother, Yemi.
In fact, all of the show’s references to the Underworld, Water, and Mirrors - all archetypal symbols of The Unconscious that I’ve discussed in article after article - have come to the forefront and their importance is now being revealed in a new and amazing way.
We saw the start of true cross-over last week in “The Package”, when Sun knocked herself out in the RTL, just as she was looking into the mirror in TLX, and then awoke to no longer be able to speak English just like her TLX counterpart. However with Charlie and Daniel, the bleed-through of timelines has been truly confirmed. I believe now we will only see it continue to escalate, and our still-living RTL characters will begin to feel that something odd is afoot as they continue along with their TLX lives.
Finally, showing our characters with an eye opened in a close-up was also given an even greater significance. It is love at first sight that initially clues Daniel into things not being what they appear to be. Charlie’s tattoo of the famous Beatles lyric, “Living is easy with eyes closed”, has also taken on a new meaning after this episode, where we learn he too had opened his eyes to a false reality.
Vision and sight are now more substantially involved, yet the concept has been rippling through the show since the very first moment of the “Pilot” when we saw Jack’s eye open as all hell was breaking loose at the crash-site nearby. It almost makes one question which reality is true, if either one, and all of those discarded “VR theories” of seasons past start rushing back to memory, each carrying a new and urgent sense of truth.
Race for the Prize
Speaking of rushing, Daniel could tell that Desmond too had become aware and “felt love”, along with the fact that something was wrong with the current life he was living. His ultimate gift to Mr. Hume was the reveal that the Penny he was seeking was his half-sister, and he provided Des with the time and place (time and space) where he could finally find her.
What a perfect location it was to have them meet at the stadium where RTL Desmond once trained for a sailboat race, where he (presumably) first met Jack Shephard, and where he basically broke it off with Penny until the race was over and his mission could be accomplished. That mission was of course to gain her father, Charles Widmore’s, approval. I suppose this is why the “creator” of this TLX reality might think a connection between Charles and Desmond would be the more important issue that needed to be addressed.
Perhaps something (cough-MIB-cough) was even able to read RTL-Desmond’s mind in order to obtain this information when he was on the Island. Perhaps it misread Desmond’s motives as being all about Widmore, since he was technically not with Penny at that point in time. And perhaps this is why in TLX, Charles and Desmond are buddy-buddy and Penelope is out of the picture altogether. Not to mention, if Desmond was in love with Penny, this would create a “constant” bond of consciousness between time-lines, and he might just start to see through the veil-X that’s been pulled over his eyes, basically just like we saw happen in the episode anyway.
Hit Me Like You Did the First Time
Poor Desmond. The moment his hand touches Penny’s during their adorably awkward introduction, he instantly passed out cold. I suppose he had an overload of sorts, just through her touch. Now that’s what I call consciousness-altering love!
BUH-BLAM! Desmond woke back up in Widmore's Electromagnetic Fun Box, and discovered he had only been unconscious for a few seconds. Once again his eyes were checked, and Team Widmore remarked in amazement how he survived that huge bombardment of energy.
Charles once again apologized to Desmond, but before he could properly explain himself, Desmond interrupted him and said that he understood. Now that his RTL consciousness had connected with TLX, perhaps he suddenly became aware of some greater purpose in a way that he never had realized before. Widmore was visibly surprised at this; even more so when Des agreed to work with him immediately on the important task Charles had mentioned having planned for him.
As Zoe and a couple of tech-goons led Desmond back to the station, they were suddenly and violently jumped by The Zombie Sayid. Snap crackle pop! Necks were cracked and a gun was cocked. And of all people, he let Zoe live, and told her to run. Run away she did.
Thanks Sayid, thanks a lot. Zoe is the new Frogurt, and I eagerly await her flaming arrow.
Desmond, still in a state of “awareness afterglow” seemed as if he had no clue what was really going on, and since he only knew Sayid as a friend who once helped save his life, my guess is that he had no choice but to believe Mr. Unfeeling when he said that Team Widmore was a bad crowd to be running with. So without further ado, The Amazing Electromagnetic Dream-Des and The Zombie Sayid marched off into the jungle.
Guy Who Got a Headache and Accidentally Saves the World
Before the episode ended, we were given a quick trip back to TLX, where Desmond woke up after fainting right in front of one bewildered Penelope. Their chemistry was unmistakable, beautiful even, and they agreed to go out together for some coffee.
Raise your hand if you thought of Sawyer and Juliet at that moment. Yeah, I knew I wasn’t the only one still holding out for that reunion as well. Oh LOST, you saucy tease, you!
I believe Desmond’s ultimate desire to get his hands on the Flight 815 passenger manifest might just serve as the one grand catalyst for everyone to wake up and stop living with eyes closed in TLX. Just like shaking hands with Penny sent his mind into a whirlwind, perhaps getting the remaining survivors together for a little meet and greet with their RTL loved-ones might also help to jog memories a bit and wake them up from what might just be a type of living dream that they are all now a part of.
I have used the radio receiver as a metaphor for consciousness before. It seems that in this story, all one needs to do is play with the dials a bit; i.e. make physical contact, or even more drastically, be forced into unconsciousness in order to “tune in” to a new “station”. And if one really wants to change the ability to pick up new and exotic frequencies altogether, one simply needs a catastrophic electromagnetic event and voila, one becomes “unstuck in time” itself.
All We Have is Now
The episode following Desmond’s trip through the light fantastic only continued the theme of consciousness-altering love. In addition, the Hurley-centric “Everyone Loves Hugo” (a title that we all know perfectly mirrors season one’s “Everyone Hates Hugo”) brought along with it of the longest-awaited reunions in the show’s history, a very shocking death, and a few more nice reveals.
Let’s get right to it, RTL events first.
I really didn’t expect Ilana’s interruption of Hurley paying his respects to Libby’s gravesite would turn back around and bite her in the arse so quickly. But when she revealed her bag of dynamite that looked like it had just been tossed in there all willy-nilly, after everyone back in season one had made such an effort to wrap and carry each stick with the utmost care, it wasn’t too surprising to see her go BUH-BOOM, Arzt-style. I just didn’t expect it to happen so suddenly, and when she was in mid-sentence.
So much for Jacob’s specially-trained Protector of the Candidates. I mean, that had to be part of his plan, right? To have Ilana cover things until Desmond, Secret-Weapon-Super-Man arrived on the Island?
Haven’t Got a Clue
Team Jacob is starting to remind me more and more of The Others with each passing episode. They don’t seem to do a thing anymore except blindly follow whoever decides to spit forth any given direction. The chain of command was completely whack, if not totally non-existent.
In fact, if I remember correctly, it all went a little something like this:
Ilana followed Jacob. Everyone else followed Ilana. Jacob told Ilana to follow Richard in the event of his death. Richard followed the Ghost Whispers of his dead wife. Everyone then followed Ilana, who was following Richard. Ilana went ba-da-boom, now everyone else is following Richard.
And Richard was still determined to blow up Ajira Flight 316, despite what Hurley tried to tell him in objection, which he had in turn heard from the Ghost Whispers of Dead Michael Dawson.
Meanwhile, Camp Lockeness was pretty much in the same situation. In fact, Sawyer even mentioned the fact that they all had just been sitting around twiddling their thumbs while Jin had been kidnapped, and asked MIB when they were getting off the Island. I do love it when a character plays “the audience”.
However, we were all schooled on the fact that “there is a difference between doing nothing and waiting”, as Lockeness put it. He went on to further explain that he still needed Hugo, Jack, and Sun if they were all going to be able to leave.
Cue The Zombie Sayid’s return to the camp after at some point having tied Desmond to a tree not too far away. He clued Lockeness in to the fact that he had obtained “The Package”, and they both then went off towards Desmond’s location. This did not bode well for Mr. Hume, not one bit at all.
However, Des remained for the most part unafraid and unaffected, even while tied to a tree by a man he thought was his friend. More on this in a bit…
In the meantime, the Beach Group had decided to go along with Richard on a quest for more dynamite and they would have succeeded, if Hurley hadn’t have blown up the entire Black Rock ship! And quite an impressive explosion it made, too. I must admit, ol’ Hugo had me fooled just like the other beach chumps, as he conned us all into believing he had given in to Richard’s plan after all.
He then pulled part two of his con in the form of telling everyone that Jacob said they should just try talking to Lockeness instead of trying to “blow stuff up”. Richard called him on his bluff, but Hurley brought it right back to Richard and said he didn’t have to prove anything to him. Team Jacob then basically split into the Blow It Up group, consisting of Richard, Ben, and Miles, and the Talk it Out group of Hugo, Frank, Sun, and Jack.
Way to stick together Beach Party!
Michael, Time to Wake Up
That night, Hurley run into Dead Dawson again, and we received an answer to one of LOST’s longest-running mysteries. The use of the tern Ghost Whispers earlier was for naught, as this is exactly what they have now been revealed to be. Not a huge surprise but it was nice to have it finally clarified once and for all. Michael explained to Hugo they are the voices of those who had not been allowed to leave the Island because of the bad things that they did in their lifetimes.
The Island isn’t just a “Cork” holding evil at bay. It’s also prison of sorts for Dead Bad Guys. The question is who’s in charge when the Warden himself dies? Anyone? Anyone…?
Maximum Dream for Evil
In my opinion, the most interesting part of the episode came from the meeting of Lockeness and Desmond. MIB’s way of navigating his way with words was matched equally with Desmond’s cool response to his every question. I must give my props to Henry Ian Cusick for his portrayal of this new version of Desmond who had mind-melded with his TLX-self. He got Lockeness to untie him, all during which he kept giving The Wolf in Locke’s Clothing a very calm yet suspicious eye.
At first, I thought that Desmond was completely clueless to the fact that Locke was not The Real John Locke. Upon re-watching the episode, now I could believe the opposite. Desmond’s attitude while answering Locke’s questions was much different that the way he had acted just a short while ago with Widmore. He was much more guarded, and not in the way a man should be who is among people he trusts.
Then again, he also could just be so used to being captive, in addition to a new laid-back approach overall that may have resulted from the knowledge that he now had a greater purpose.
That…and the fact there’s another version of his self in a parallel universe running about fixing things for everyone.
We briefly saw the strange jungle kid again, who seemed to smile and tease Lockeness this time. I am hoping that smile was for the idea that Desmond was back on the Island, and that a White Rock had just been passed to the MIB once again.
Lockeness and Desmond walked through the night to a location like one we had seen before. How appropriate that they reached one of the stone wells like the one that leads to the Frozen Donkey Wheel. It was revealed that a long, long time ago, an ancient culture on the Island found places on the Island that gave off certain energies and dug wells looking for the source of it. This particular well was so old, it was dug by hand.
Oh yeah, DHARMA did the same thing, just with bigger, more technological hands.
I don’t think that SuperHumeMan expected to be thrown down into the bloody well, man! Just like a kid tossing a coin into a shopping mall fountain, Lockeness made a wish and his Desmond problem went away. Never, ever ask MIB, “What’s the point of being afraid?” when he asks you why you’re not.
Desmond was then left down in the Underworld, fate at this point still unknown.
Thanks To You
Lockeness returned to his camp just in time for the players he had been waiting for earlier to finally show up. Hurley was the first to step out of the treeline and “break the ice with The Smoke Monster”. He negotiated a promise of non-violence between the two camps. Then one by one, Team Talk It Out stepped out of the jungle and right into the place I truly believe they needed to actually be the furthest away from. I am starting to think that Hurley was right, and Jack should step back in as leader before Hugo’s innocent, trust-you-first attitude gets them all killed.
And with that, we were left in the RTL with one mother of a Jackface.
Just Like Before
Ah, another day, another Man of the Year Award. Or so it would seem for Hugo Reyes-X’s mother who has had to repeatedly accompany him to the countless ceremonies and celebrations of his life as her own son’s date. Just as it was in the RTL, mamma Reyes wanted to see her Hugo with a real lady-friend on his arm.
However, Hugo-X, “luckiest man in the world”, world-famous entrepreneur, huge-hearted donator to various charities, was just as chicken as his chain of restaurants. He had everything, and everyone loved him…everyone except for the ladies, that is. Hugo had no idea how to meet women, and I suppose there was a fear that they would only be interested in his wealth, anyway. So his determined mother decided to help out by setting him up on a blind date, and in order to prove to her and to himself that he was not scared, he agreed to meet this “Rosalita” woman Mrs. Reyes played matchmaker with.
Satellite of You
Right as I was about to be totally bummed out that this Rosalita chick stood Hurley up on their blind date…HOLY SMOKES IT’S LIBBY!!! I’m trying to recreate my surprise at seeing her again, and if I could punch you in the leg like I did to my dear fella who was sitting next to me at the time…well, just imagine that, too.
At first, like Hurley, I thought Libby was for some reason now named Rosalita in TLX. He was so adorable as he immediately said how he didn’t expect someone so pretty, then blushed for being so forthcoming. But we then quickly learned that she was not his date at all. Instead, she had recognized him from across the room and was drawn over to introduce herself.
Just as our other currently RTL-deceased characters Daniel and Charlie, Libby seemed to have been experiencing some time-line breakthrough. She grabbed onto Hurley’s hands and held them as she confessed her belief that she was connected to him, “like soul mates”, and asked if he remembered her. I think my own heart skipped a few beats during that moment as I expected their touch would be some kind of fuel that would spark Hurley’s RTL consciousness to reveal itself and he would suddenly answer, “YES!”
No such luck. In fact, Dr. Brooks from the Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute stopped by to interrupt them; the same man who was Hurley’s doctor during his own stay at Santa Rosa in the RTL. It would seem that Libby was still a patient in TLX however, and as she was rushed off into the crazy-mobile, Hurley was left standing alone and deflated.
Afterward, Hurley went on an understandable depression-fueled chicken-binge, during which a Mr. Desmond Hume “just happened to be” in the restaurant as well. Desmond recognized Hugo hiding behind his greasy bucket of drumsticks and introduced himself while asking whom it was Hurley seemed so upset over. He already somehow knew it was lady-related, that clever devil, Desmond. I think we all know Desmond was totally aware of what he was doing. I just don’t think he quite knew how to get the whole “waking up” ball rolling.
In fact, I think it surprised Desmond a bit when Hugo told him that the “crazy” woman he met mentioned that she already knew him. Wouldn’t you know, the universe seemed like it was doing some of the work for Desmond in that it set the play up, and he now only had to hit the ball; i.e. say the right thing that would get Hurley to make his love connection. After confirming that Hurley felt in his gut that Libby was telling the truth, he advised Hurley to find out where she thought she knew him from.
If I Go Mad
Dr. Brooks claimed that Libby had “issues with reality”, which gave me a nice chuckle since we all could have seen that one coming. With a slash of the pen to check however, Hurley was able to negotiate a little one-on-one time with Libby over at Santa Rosa.
During their conversation, Libby confessed the moment she saw Hugo in one of his commercials, a flood of memories rushed into her mind; memories of a plane crash, an Island, and her attraction to Hurley. I guess after such a conflict of consciousness it is understandable that she would check herself into a mental institution.
Hugo also understood this, and got up his nerve to ask her on a date. And the crowd goes wild!
Lightning Strikes the Postman
Hugo Reyes and Elizabeth Smith finally got their picnic on the beach. It was more than touching, as many of us fans have been waiting and hoping, hoping and waiting, that somehow, someday Libby’s story would be continued.
At this point it doesn’t matter if it had to happen in an “alternate” reality, and for the first time I became shockingly and emotionally involved in TLX. The moment those two kissed and Hurley’s memories of their love came flooding back to him, in the same kind of flashes Desmond had seen, I began crying uncontrollably. It was probably the most tears I have shed since “The Constant”, and I applaud everyone involved with making that scene everything that it needed to be. I now cannot even get a few screen-caps of this moment without having to wipe my eyes.
Of course just as expected, Desmond was watching the two from the parking lot nearby. Mission Hurley Kiss completed. Check one passenger from the list!
The Spontaneous Combustion of John
Next up on Desmond’s Wake Up Tour would be one John Locke, Substitute Teacher. After surviving The Inquisition a-la Benjamin Linus, who assumed the strange man hanging around in his car out front of the school had pervy intentions, Mr. Hume decided to tackle his second Flight 815 passenger.
Or, run him over. My guess is that since Locke-X already had love, Desmond was going to have to do things the hard way. And so hard is exactly how he hit Locke with his car. The scene was so completely frightening, it made me punch my poor other half’s leg yet again at the sheer shock of it. Poor Locke was left shaking on the ground and near death…just where he unfortunately needed to be.
On a quick side-note, this scene occurred right after Lockeness had tossed Desmond down that well in the RTL. I suppose one could say…touché’.
Although I have done my best to avoid the various articles and theories out there, I couldn’t help avoiding the people who, being die-hard Locke fans such as myself, are still holding the torch that somehow he will return to us the man he once was and boot the MIB from that doppelganger body altogether.
We already know that all of Locke’s memories are in there, as MIB told Ben how he knew John’s last dying thoughts. In the event some thought that perhaps he was lying, we were later given a scene where MIB seemed to either be channeling The Real John Locke, or John’s consciousness had suddenly taken over for a second. “Don’t tell me what I can’t do!” Lockeness yelled out, twice.
The scene was curious then, but even more so now that we have connections being made between time-lines. I suppose the question is now about the repercussions of TLX Locke remembering his RTL counterpart.
How disturbing would it be if he remembers dying? Even more so, what would happen if he also “remembers” someone else in his body? Will this be the start of events which eventually allow The Real John Locke’s consciousness to “awaken” within the body that MIB currently inhabits? I don’t know if I really want to buy into that idea completely just yet. I am hoping that something else happens, perhaps something along these lines, but not so obvious.
I did think it was awesome that Ben-X was the first one at the scene of the accident, especially since his RTL counterpart once shot him and left him to die.
CONCLUSION: Oh My Pregnant Head
Since this is probably the longest article I have ever written, I am going to keep the conclusion short. To be honest, I’ve been writing for more than half the day, through the night, and into the morning. My head is spinning and the next episode of LOST airs in less than 13 hours. I believe I now need to go spend some of my own time unconscious so that I can be fully awakened for when our next installment plays out.
I’m sure I’ve forgotten something in this write-up. Or perhaps I mixed up a name. Maybe one of my ideas is so ridiculous, I need to be set straight. Too many puns? My apologies.
Do feel free to comment and let me know, because I also want to know who to thank for getting this far through this thing!
Until then, have a Cluckity-Cluck day!
*I write about LOST because I love the challenge of deciphering the clues and adding the pieces together. My thoughts are based solely on the show, the LOST Experience, and random research, as I try to avoid spoilers, promos, and even future episode titles. I love to guess what is going on, but I also like to do so in a way that leaves some of the conclusions still up to you. I do not know the answers and am often wrong. Whatever the truth turns out to be, it has been the journey that has meant the most to me.*
Posted By: The ODI