Big twist this week. No, not how late the recap is… Instead of a flash forward or flash back scenario, Lost fans were given both in the same episode. There were some clues (five by my count) that might have tipped off observant viewers as to this little bit of temporal-trickery, but most of us were taken in by the ruse.
So…if the writers pulled us in with the time twisting, does that make us all a bunch of clock suckers?
The smoke monster gave me a cold sore.
This week’s episode was all about Sun’s child and her pregnancy. Before we delve into that, I want to restate my conviction that the baby is NOT Jin’s and that Sun is well aware of that. Juliet tells her that the baby is about 8 weeks along and therefore conceived “On Island”. Tracking back from that day, 8 weeks before, Sun and Jin were barely on speaking terms, let alone baby making terms. If my Lost calculations are correct, the supposed date of conception would be only a few days before Sun reveals her English skills to the group, a time when she and Jin were isolated from the group when Jin was still a controlling bastard.
It’s possible they had sex at that time, but it seems unlikely under the circumstances of communal living with Jin being so concerned with his wife’s propriety. Juliet would have no way of knowing that and it is my theory that she is using Sun’s pregnancy (a conception which I believe occurred “Off Island” and therefore poses no threat to Sun) as a card in a game she’s playing against Ben.
This week’s episode starts with an odd exchange between Lapidus and Keamy. Apparently, they have some sort of appointment, one for which Lapidus is not to be late. Before the meeting though, Lapidus has to deliver some food to their guests.
Outside of the cabin he’s heading for, he finds Regina sitting, reading a book. Oddly, Regina’s book is upside down. A fact she corrects without comment.
It’s just another fake autobiography Oprah endorsed. Who gives?
(*Lost Bookclub Sidenote: Regina is reading “Survivors of the Challenger” by Jules Verne. The book details the fate of a group of people on a ship that catches fire and runs aground on a reef, among other misfortunes. A raft is constructed as the re-floated ship slowly sinks and the survivors float aimlessly in the sea, dying by ones and twos. All sorts of fun stuff happens, including a character going mad and killing himself, and folks getting eaten by sharks…and each other. Lots and lots of possible Lost parallels, making at least a trip to the wiki, if not finding a copy of the book, worth the effort.*)
(*Upside Down Sidenote: In literature and theatre, if an object or symbol is pointedly shown upside down, there is usually a good reason. Often an upside down object is meant to indicate that the obviously important placement of it is actually a red herring and means nothing. Equally likely is the possibility that the object is meant to be interpreted in an inverted way, such as a mirror image of one of the characters or plot lines in a book. Beyond indicating that Regina is distracted, it could be that placing the book upside down is meant to point out that it is indeed a red herring. It is also possible that the writers intended the audience to be aware of the book and plan to use an inversion of the plot or one of the characters in some way.*)
In the cabin, Lapidus asks after Desmond’s health as he delivers the food. When Sayid asks why the two of them are being held as captives, Lapidus explains that the captain is angry because they broke out of the sickbay and into the comm room.
Sayid protests that they didn’t “bust out” since the door was left open, presumably by Lapidus.
“Why the hell would I do that?”
Um, cuz you’re a Barbara Hershey fan, maybe? Beaches has gotten me out of more than one mess, buddy.
Sayid changes tacks and asks if the freighter folk have had any luck contacting their people on the beach, but apparently not. Lapidus dumps some lima beans out of the bag he was carrying and makes to leave.
(*Yuck Sidenote: Lima beans? Wasn’t he supposed to bring food?*)
It seems that the problems on the ship extend to the galley as well as the comm room.
(*Landlubber Sidenote: Only a flyboy like Lapidus would call the ship’s galley a “Kitchen”.*)
“I still want to talk to the captain.”
“No, you don’t.”
Back on the beach, Sun expresses her concern to Jin about how long Sayid and Desmond have been gone. Jin casually dismisses the delay and changes the subject to baby names. She doesn’t want to jinx the baby by naming her too early but Jin insists and tells her that he thinks the baby is a girl and he wants to name her “Ji Yeon”. Sun asks that they leave off naming the baby until they get off the island, which Jin agrees to.
In apartment or hotel, Sun packs a small bag with a toothbrush. Coming out of the bathroom, we see the television showing a Korean dubbed version of Nikki’s old show, Expose. Apparently, Expose has the same effect on Sun as it did on me because shortly after seeing it, she is in enough pain to warrant a call to emergency services. At last, a solution to the island pregnancy problem! Don’t expose the women to Expose!
On a Korean street, Jin (Clue #1 – I’ll explain later) locates a toy store and runs in, desperately searching for a panda, which he is unable to find. Finally a clerk helps him find it. In ringing it up, Mr. Nosey Clerk asks if Jin is heading to the maternity ward with the panda, which he is. Our man Jin doesn’t yet know if the baby in question is a boy or a girl.
Just then, Jin’s enormous cell phone (Clue #2) rings. He’s on his way!
Clue number three, he also bought a scrunchie.
On the beach, Sun wakes Jin to the news that Kate and Jack are back. When Jin asks what happened, Kate asks him if she means before or after Charlotte knocked her unconscious. Kate explains that Charlotte may not have wanted to explain why she was on her way to a poison gas factory.
“Juliet told Jack that it was a power station.”
“Why would Juliet lie about that?”
“Force of habit?”
Sun wonders why the two newbies were headed to a poison gas factory. Kate explains that they deactivated it, possibly hoping to earn some brownie points with the group.
(*Um…what? Sidenote: How does sneaking off without telling anyone in ANY way indicate that the newbies were looking to score points with the group? If anything, it seems they were trying to keep the whole thing secret. I think Charlotte hit Kate harder than she thought.*)
Sun asks Kate if she thinks that the freighter group is going to rescue them.
“In all the time they’ve been here they’ve talked about a lot of things, and none involved rescuing us.”
In their little guest cabin, Desmond awakes to see Sayid eating out of one of the lima bean cans.
“I hope they resolve their kitchen issues.”
(*Galley Sidenote: Obviously, Sayid was never in the Iraqi Navy! It’s a galley for cryin’ out loud!*)
As he puts the beans aside, a note slips through a vent in the door. Sayid retrieves it and shows it to Desmond.
DON’T TRUST THE CAPTAIN
They’re on a boat.
There are two of them in the room.
Water is wet.
Lima beans are disgusting.
Oops, I’m sorry. I thought “DON’T TRUST THE CAPTAIN” was the first round in a game of “State the patently obvious.”
Considering that they’re locked up without cause and being fed only lima beans, this warning seems to go pretty much without saying. I won’t bother guessing the identity of their “friend” on the boat. I will state with reasonable certainty that he or she is a complete idiot.
On the beach, Sun takes a refreshingly direct approach. She walks up to Daniel, introduces herself, tells him she’s pregnant and then asks him point blank if his group is going to rescue them. When he hesitates, she presses.
“It’s a simple question.”
“The thing is… um, it’s not really my call, Sun.”
Let me be, woman. I’m trying to fix the gd garage door opener. Why are these things so damn useless?
“Then whose call is it?”
When he doesn’t answer, she has her answer. She thanks him and walks away.
Jin and Jack are discussing Jin’s improving English over breakfast when Sun runs up. Jack asks after her health and reminds her to ask if she needs him. He moves on.
In Korean Sun tells Jin to do as she says and not ask questions. Naturally, the first thing he does is ask a question.
“What’s the matter?”
“You need to find food for two days. Meet me at the tent in twenty minutes.”
“Why? What’s happened?” Um…Jin? That’s two more questions, buddy.
“We’re going to Locke’s camp.”
In the camp’s makeshift infirmary, Sun is rooting through the medical supplies when Juliet finds her there. Juliet asks her what she’s doing and after an uncomfortable interrogation about why Sun suddenly needs more pre-natal vitamins when she should have plenty left, Sun finally tells Juliet that she and Jin are going to Locke’s camp because they don’t trust the two from the freighter. Juliet warns her that staying on the island in her condition is a death sentence, but Sun has the evidence of her eyes that Claire’s baby and Claire are fine and she feels fine so far. All she has is Juliet’s word that something will happen if she stays on the island.
“I’m going to do what’s best for me and for my baby, because, no, I don’t trust you.”
Sun takes the vitamins from Juliet and storms off.
As Sun is wheeled into a hospital, her status as one of the Oceanic Six is mentioned by one of the nurses. Shortly thereafter, a nurse tries to take her wedding ring off, a standard practice with all jewelry due to the swelling that Sun is bound to experience. She’s not very happy about it and fights as best she can. Just then, a doctor arrives and reassures her that everything will be alright. Her regular Doctor is away at a conference, but he’s ready to pinch hit. She asks if something is wrong with her baby and he tells her that it is in distress. As the injected pain medication takes hold, she asks after Jin and the Doctor gives instructions for the nurse to try to reach him.
(*Suspicious Sidenote: Veteran Lost fans were paying just a little more attention to this exchange, since we’ve come to be suspicious of ANYONE who is out of the ordinary. With Sun’s regular Doctor being away, poor old Dr. Bae is immediately under the microscope. In fact, I think that the substitution was done by the writers, not the powers behind the plot. By putting her regular Doctor out of the picture, no uncomfortable silences need to happen when Sun brings up her husband, AND by making us take suspicious note of the new Doc, we’re forced to pay attention a little closer to a conversation that ONLY makes sense if Sun has it with someone who doesn’t know her.*)
Also, I’m waaaay cheaper. I’m working towards a SAG card.
Panda (Black and White LOST Symbology anyone?) in hand, Jin hails a cab. He pours the giant stuffed toy into the cab, but stops short of climbing in himself when his cellphone rings again. As he answers, someone bumps him, knocking the phone from his hand. Before he can pick it up, a motorscooter runs over it. Bending to retrieve it, Jin fails to notice that someone is climbing into his cab, panda and all. Before he can stop it, the cab is gone. He screams death threats at the rapidly receding cab thief. (Clue #3)
Jin returns to the toy store to buy another bear, but they’re all out. Except for the one already on hold behind the clerk. The helpful clerk tries to offer a substitution, a stuffed dragon which brings good luck in the year of the dragon. (Clue #4)
Jin finally convinces the guy to sell him the bear, despite the fact that it’s already paid for, with a combination of cash and some “I will make you eat that fucking dragon if you don’t sell me that fucking panda right fucking now” eye-speak. Jin can be convincing when he needs to be. (Clue #5)
On the island, Kate draws Sun and Jin a map to guide them to Locke’s camp. She promises to give them a nice long head start before telling Jack they’ve gone. Juliet walks up and interrupts the orienteering session, telling Sun again that it’s a bad idea. When Sun doesn’t seem interested in what she has to say, Juliet turns to Jin and tries to tell him how dangerous it is for Sun to leave now.
Yes! Raiders of the Lost Arc is right! Pictionary has no language boundaries.
“Wherever Sun go, I go.”
After a final ineffective plea to Sun, Juliet plays her trump.
“Jin, Your wife had an affair.”
“Sun was with another man. She thought the baby was his.”
Sun, the very picture of outrage, strides up to Juliet and slaps her across the face. Considering the bruises that the fight with Charlotte left, that had to hurt.
Sun turns to Jin, but understandably, he’s in no mood to talk at that moment. He stalks off.
On the beach, Sun catches up to Jin and tries to get him to talk to her. He’s in silent mode and not ready to speak. As she continues to try, Bernard walks up, notes Jin’s fishing gear and asks if he can tag along on Jin’s fishing trip. After several awkward seconds, Bernard clues in and tries to excuse himself from the awkward situation, but Jin stops him from leaving.
The two men are in the outrigger, fishing. The scene is reminiscent of Jin’s reunion with his father, also surrounded by fishing equipment. After reminding Jin that they are the only two married men on the island, Bernard confides the news of Rose’s cancer to Jin and the revelation that the island seems to have put it into remission.
“But when the camp split up, I was sure that she’d want to go with Locke. Why would she want to leave the island and risk getting sick again?”
“Then why do you stay with Jack?”
“Because it was the right thing to do. Locke…he’s a murderer. See, it’s all about karma, Jin. Do you know karma?”
Jin nods that he does, indeed, know karma.
“You make bad choices, bad things happen to you. But you make good choices, and then good…”
Just then, Jin hooks a fish. They get it safely into the boat.
“Wow, look at that! See? Now, that’s karma. We must be the good guys, huh?”
Much like Rose, Bernard shows up just when someone’s conscience needs a little kick in the right direction. They’re like a black and white Jiminy Cricket. (Black and White LOST Symbology anyone?)
On the freighter, Desmond comments on the banging sound that’s been going on for a while.
“Can’t they just fix whatever the bloody hell’s causing that?”
“That sound is not mechanical.”
“What, you think somebody’s doing that? Somebody’s just banging those pipes again and again?”
“That’s exactly what I think.”
Just then, Ray enters to tell them that the captain is ready to see them. He takes them up on deck, where Sayid notices that the helicopter is gone. Apparently, Lapidus is running an errand.
“Did he go to the island?”
“You know anywhere else he could land?”
As Sayid continues the pointless interrogation of Sgt. Schultz…er, Ray, Desmond notices something decidedly out of the ordinary. It’s Regina, doing her best Jacob Marley impression, draped in heavy chains. Despite his best efforts, Desmond cannot reach her or even warn anyone closer in time to stop her from jumping over the side and sinking out of sight.
Suicide or intense full body work out?
Sayid and Desmond frantically try to rally the deckhands to get a rope to try to save her, but no one seems the least bit interested in saving her. Finally, a new figure appears and orders everyone to stop.
“It’s over! She’s gone. Everybody get back to your posts. That was an order.”
The new arrival walks up to Sayid and Desmond and introduces himself.
“I’m Captain Gault. I suppose you two have a few questions.”
(*Yet Another Interesting Name Sidenote: Captain Gault is the name of a morally ambiguous mercenary sea captain in the novel Captain Gault, Being the Exceedingly Private Log of a Sea-Captain written in 1917 by William Hope Hodgson. It is also the name of a character in Atlas Shrugged, a novel by Ayn Rand in which the elite of society decide to create a separate utopian “Village” for themselves that is undetectable by the rest of the world. Nothing familiar there…*)
Captain Gault asks what he can do for them.
“Let’s just start with why a woman jumped over the side of your ship, and you did nothing to stop it.”
“I didn’t jump in or order my crew to jump in, because I didn’t want to lose any more people.”
Desmond asks him to tell them what exactly is going on.
“Some of my crew has been dealing with…what might best be described as a heightened case of cabin fever. I think it’s got something to do with the close proximity of the island.”
“Why don’t you turn around then?”
“I’ve tried, but we have a saboteur on board, and he’s done one hell of a job on my engines. I’ve got my crew working around the clock to repair them.”
“Then you’ll take our people home?”
“Then we move to safer waters… Those are my orders.”
Sayid snidely asks if Gault would be willing to tell them who gave the orders, assuming that he won’t get a straight answer, but Gault seems unconcerned with keeping his employer’s identity secret.
This is a gay cruise line run by Rosie O’Donnell’s wife. You got a problem with that, breeder?
It seems that Ben was telling the truth when he told Locke that the freighter was sent by Charles Widmore.
Gault leads Desmond and Sayid into his cabin and pulls a metal box out of a cabinet. It’s the black box from an airliner. From an Oceanic airliner, specifically.
Flight 815. Recovered from a deep ocean trench where they found the wreckage and all 324 passengers who perished with the flight. Sayid seems surprised to learn that all 324 passengers are dead.
“That’s not the complete story, as you are well aware, Mr. Jarrah, given the fact that you’re standing here, breathing. The wreckage was obviously staged. Now can you imagine what kind of resources and manpower go into pulling off a feat of that magnitude? Faking the recovery of a plane crash? Putting 324 families through a grieving process based on a lie? But what’s even more disturbing…where exactly does one come across 324 dead bodies? And that, Mr. Jarrah, Mr. Hume, is just one of the many reasons we want Benjamin Linus.”
And Karl Rove.
Is it just me, or is Gault using a Ben-ism here? Basically, he’s ignoring Sayid’s questions by dangling a different set of questions in front of him. I don’t think Sayid and Desmond care why the freighter is there, just why it isn’t helping them. By putting the tantalizing mystery of the faked plane crash in front of them, Gault is distracting them from the fact that he’s not offering to help them.
On the beach, Juliet tries to make peace with Sun, explaining just how she and her baby will die if she doesn’t get off the island. It’s not a pretty picture.
In the hospital, the Doctor is telling Sun that they will have to perform a C-section, since “The medication makes a natural birth difficult.”
I have to wonder, what medication? Is there some special drug that Sun needs to take for some reason or is he just talking about the pain drugs they gave her earlier?
Suddenly, despite his protests and despite her trying to hold back the birth until Jin arrives, the baby decides to break the stalemate and crown. In typical Hollywood fashion, labour for Sun is a process shorter than the process that put the bun in the oven in the first place. And little Ji Yeon arrives into the world, with no trouble at all.
On the ship, Ray escorts Desmond and Sayid to their new quarters. The cabin has a big old “I blew my brains out right here” stain on the wall. Ray calls down the hall to a guy with a mop to come and clean it up. He’s reluctant, but Ray isn’t taking no for an answer.
As he comes close, Sayid and Desmond see a familiar face.
Ray introduces the two men to “Kevin Johnson” and they all shake hands, sharing just a little “WTF” eye-speak, but not enough to tip Ray off.
Least surprising reveal of a returning cast member since Bo and Luke came back to Hazzard after discovering that nobody wanted to hire crappy actors with goofy accents for shows that didn’t have stunt cars and moonshine in ‘em.
Sitting in her tent, Sun is surprised when Jin arrives bearing dinner. She tries to get him to let her explain her actions, but he stops her.
“I know why you did it. I know the man.. I used to be. Before this island, I withheld my affections. And I know…that whatever you did…you did to that man. His actions caused this. So I forgive you.”
Karma, indeed. I wonder if it’ll work?
When Jin offers to come with her to Locke’s camp, she tells him that she’s changed her mind. Juliet has convinced her to stick with the only obvious way off the island that they have at the moment, the helicopter. Jin pledges to protect her and the baby, no matter what.
Finally, he asks the question.
“Is the baby…mine?”
“Yes, Jin. I swear the baby is yours. It’s yours. I love you so much. I thought I had lost you.”
“I love you too. And you will never lose me.”
In the hospital, Jin arrives with the panda. It turns out that he’s there as a representative of Sun’s father, Mr. Paik of Paik Automotive, to deliver the panda to the Chinese Ambassador who has just become a grandfather.
“Mr. Ambassador. This panda is a symbol of Mr. Paik’s eagerness to do business in the great country of China. Please accept his congratulations.”
“Thank Mr. Paik for me. Tell him I’ll call.”
As Jin leaves, a nurse tries to flirt with him, asking why he’s leaving so soon.
“It wasn’t my baby.”
“Well, maybe someday…”
“Don’t rush me. I’ve only been married two months.”
So to recap those clues I mentioned:
(Clue #1) – There is something “off” about Jin’s hair. Sure, it could be that he changed the style in the future, but it’s distinct and quite noticeable and I think an obvious pointer to what’s really going on.)
(Clue #2) – Jin’s cellphone is massive by today’s standards. I used to be in the cellphone trade and Asia is always months, if not years, ahead of North America in terms of cellular technology. It’s possible, but very unlikely, that a young man of Jin’s age might still carry a phone like that in 2005, but it would be the approximate cellular equivalent of him driving a huge station wagon with wood paneling.
(Clue #3) – The “new” Jin seems unlikely to scream “I will hunt you down and rip your head off” to a total stranger over a stuffed animal.
(Clue #4) – The year of the dragon happens between February 2000 and January 2001, and again in 2012 to 2013. Assuming that Mr. Helpful Clerk guy would know this and not try to sell Jin a stuffed animal for the wrong zodiac year, it seems obvious that we are not seeing a future Jin.
(Clue #5) – “New” Jin might overpay for the panda, but the “I will make you eat that fucking dragon if you don’t sell me that fucking panda right fucking now” eye-speak would be out of character.
Back in her apartment, Sun is returning her ring to it’s proper place and putting on lipstick when the doorbell rings. It’s Hurley!
Note to Hurley: Congrats on making it off the island. Now for crissakes, man. GROOM!
“I can’t believe you came all this way!”
“Are you kidding? Is anyone else coming?”
Ok, was it just me or did Hurley’s “Good” just seem really, really strange? Like “oooh, that means we can play naked twister all weekend” strange?
Sun introduces him to her daughter.
“She looks just like Jin.”
“Yes, she does.”
The two then like, go see him.
He’s buried in a pleasant looking cemetery, with a grave marker that dates his death as September 22, 2004, the day Flight 815 crashed.
“Jin… You were right. It’s a girl. The delivery was hard on me… The doctor said I was calling out for you… I wish you could’ve been there. Jin… She’s beautiful. Ji Yeon. I named her just like you wanted. I miss you so much. I miss you so much.