Well, the producers finally slipped up. They’ve given us absolute proof that Lost is centered on a time travel scenario.
What proof? That tie.
David Faraday’s tie can only be explained by time travel. It somehow jumped from my wardrobe in 1987 to his neck in 2004. I’ll bet he has my mesh shoes too.
Beyond that, four new characters with three interesting, if red herringish, names.
Lots to cover this week, so let’s get to it!
Whatchoo talkin’ bout, Locke?
The episode opens on what appears to be an underwater exploration of some sort. Two men lightly banter back and forth as they guide remote submersibles across the ocean floor. Within a few moments, they find something.
It’s a sunken wreck, Flight 815.
Cut to the news. Apparently the expedition that found the plane was actually searching for sunken merchant ships (The Black Rock, anyone?) in the trench when they stumbled on the remains of the doomed Oceanic jet. Watching this, the man we saw parachute onto the island last week seems more than a bit disturbed by what he’s seeing and he can’t explain why.
In a vicious storm, several people, including our parachutist, are struggling in the cockpit of a helicopter. They manage to get a chute on our guy and shove him out the door. When he lands, once he gets the chute off, he checks his gun and tucks it in his waistband.
Kate and Jack emerge from the jungle and we finally learn that his name is Daniel Faraday.
(*Holy interesting guy sidenote: Michael Faraday was a famous, mostly self educated scientist (natural philosopher in the parlance of the day) of the 19th century who experimented in chemistry, electricity and physics. He has a number of discoveries and effects named after him. The Faraday paradox deals with spinning magnets, the Faraday effect deals with magnetism, the Faraday filter is used in weather research, and the Faraday cage is a contrivance that (this one is interesting) blocks electromagnetic energy. Your microwave has a sort of Faraday cage inside to keep you from getting cooked and if you’ve ever lost a cell signal in an elevator, that’s because elevators and certain metal framed buildings act as a type of Faraday cage.)
(*Recap slowness sidenote: The recap would have been up sooner, but I found reading about this guy just fascinating.)
They let him use their phone to call the freighter, but the glow of happiness they initially felt at the prospect of being rescued turns to suspicion when Minkowski tells Faraday to take him off speaker phone. Jack and Kate share a look while Faraday takes the call privately. When he comes back he explains that the phone will use GPS locator technology to help them find the other members of the team. Kate and Jack seem to be happy to help him search.
As they head out to find his team, he asks where the rest of the survivors are.
“Most of them are back at the beach.”
“Most of them?”
Elsewhere on the island, Locke is standing face up in the rain. Hurley is naturally curious just what the hell he’s up to.
“Storm’s about to pass, Hugo.”
“It’s a friggin’ monsoon, we gotta…” And thus ends the rain. Locke and his rain. I love that.
Smells great. Head and Shoulders?
Locke gathers the gang to head out. Sawyer notices that they’re heading in the wrong direction. Locke tells him that they need to make a detour to a cabin that Locke has to go to. Hurley points back in another direction.
“I thought the cabin was back that way.”
“What’d you say, Hugo?”
When Hurley realizes that Locke is just a little too curious about Hurley and what he knows of the cabin, he lamely covers by saying he thought that Locke meant the airplane cabin. Neither Locke, nor Ben are fooled.
Oblivious to the weird vibe between Locke and Hurley, Sawyer presses the issue. When he demands to know why they should go to some shack in the woods, Locke tells him that it’s because they’re supposed to.
“Like you were supposed to throw a knife into that Naomi chick’s back?”
“You mind telling us who you’re getting your orders from, Colonel Kurtz?”
I love the smell of Apocalypse Now references in the morning.
“I got ‘em from Walt.”
Sawyer, who was there when Michael and Walt took off in Ben’s boat, way back at the end of season two, looks like he’s about to say something, but lets it go for the moment.
At the beach, Sayid and Juliet are discussing the warning that Ben offered the group about the purported rescuers. Sayid is puzzled that Ben would try to warn them of danger.
“Because he’s a liar. And he’s trying to scare us. That’s what Ben does. Or, because the people who are coming here intend to do us harm. How many guns do you have left?”
Or because he thinks you’re cute and he’s trying to make small talk so you don’t walk away.
Whenever Ben speaks, it’s like one of those little Russian dolls. You never know if there’s another layer inside until you crack it open and check.
Back with Jack and Kate, the phone is leading them through the jungle to one of Faraday’s team when they stumble on a metal case. Jack opens it to find gas masks and hazmat suits. Jack, being the whip-smart guy he is, becomes a little more suspicious.
“What’s this for?”
“Um…I’m not in charge of packing…”
And we thought Hurley was the king of lame covers.
“Daniel. Why did you bring the gun?”
“As a precaution.”
“A precaution against what?”
“Uh…okay, see…um…rescuing you and your people? Can’t really say it’s our primary objective.”
“Then what is?”
We heard you were out of deodorant. Just trying to help. GAWD.
Luckily for Faraday, the phone beeps, effectively interrupting the uncomfortable conversation. The three go charging off into the jungle in search of Miles.
Back with Locke’s party, he and Sawyer are discussing Locke seeing Walt. Sawyer thinks maybe Locke was dreaming, but Locke is convinced it was Walt…only taller.
(*Puberty sidenote: This is obviously the producers way of glossing over Malcolm David Kelley’s growth in the last three years. My bet is that this is the one and only thing we’ll hear about it from the cast. If and when we see Walt again, it will be noted that he is indeed taller, but unless it turns out that they’re actually going to use a time dilation scenario as a plot device, Walt’s abnormal (if only it had really happened over the few months “on island” time) growth spurt will be otherwise ignored by everyone.)
“Taller? What, like a giant?”
Now, that would have been great. Giant Walt. He could wrestle the smoke monster in a sort of Godzilla vs. Mothra thing…
Locke explains that Walt was the one who instructed him to stop Naomi from bringing her people to the island. Sawyer (who in this episode seems to be speaking for the fans) asks another great question.
“What, you didn’t ask him follow up questions?” I’ve been screaming those same words at my television for three years.
It turns out that Locke took Walt at his word because he was busy trying not to die from the bullet wound inflicted by Ben. The look on Sawyer’s face when Locke shows him the wound that would have killed him had he not had that kidney removed is perfectly priceless. You can actually hear a southern accented “WTF” in his eyes.
Back with Jack and Kate, Faraday is following the phone tracker when they spot a body still strapped into a parachute on the rocks at the island’s edge. Dr. Jack takes the lead and promptly ends up with Miles’ gun in his face.
“Back up, handsome.”
Ladies and gentlemen, I think Jack has a date to the first annual Otherville Ball.
While Faraday is trying to reassure Miles, Kate tries to sneak the gun out of Faraday’s pants. Perhaps we have a double date brewing?
Is that a gun in your crack or do you just have a huge hard crack?
Miles notices and backs her up too. He then demands to know where Naomi is.
A car pulls up to a nondescript house, news of the discovery of Flight 815 playing on the radio. Miles is the driver. He listens long enough to hear that authorities have declared all the passengers dead.
He gets out of the car, knocks on the door of the house and is let in by a woman who appears to be in her late middle age. He asks which room is “it” and tells her that he is to be paid in advance, cash only. He asks for two hundred, rather than the previously agreed upon one hundred, because he has been informed that the woman’s grandson was murdered. She pays and he opens the suitcase he has with him and assembles what looks like a handheld vacuum cleaner.
(*Ghostbusting sidenote: This device is apparently something that “real” ghostbusters actually use. It produces and blows cold air. Why ghosts would be affected by cold air is beyond me, but it seems to be standard in the ghostbusting trade.)
In the young man’s room, he sets up the device and starts to talk to the “ghost” of the grandson. He tells him that he wants to be able to tell the grandmother that the “ghost” has gone, but before he can do that he needs to know where “it” is. A noise behind a cabinet catches his attention and he moves it to reveal a vent where drugs and cash are stashed. He takes the cash and leaves the heroin. I guess he knows that by the time he gets to the island, Charlie won’t be around to party with…
As he leaves, he returns the extra hundred he charged, saying that the job wasn’t as tricky as he had anticipated. The lady hugs him, which he endures with an uncomfortable expression on his face.
Why isn’t Patricia Arquette on the island? She’s not afraid of her emotions.
I must admit, Lost nearly lost me as a viewer here. Taller Ghost Walt is one thing. A “real life” ghostbuster is something else. As hard as they tried to make it seem “real” and serious, it just seemed really silly to me. I can suspend my disbelief only so far, and this scene really stretched it for me. I know, I know, Lost has a ton of other “stretches” but somehow this part just rang hollow for me. Actually, come to think of it, so do “real life” ghostbusters. Maybe that’s the problem.
Back at the rocks, Faraday tries to calm Miles down, saying that these are good people, but Miles reminds him that Naomi used the “Tell my sister I love her,” code to warn them that she had been attacked.
Jack tries to explain that they didn’t kill Naomi, as does Kate, but Miles wants to know for himself and demands to be taken to her body. When Kate tries to tell him that even seeing her body won’t tell him what happened, ghostbuster Miles shouts that he’ll know.
Back with Locke’s group, Ben tries to talk to Alex, but Karl interrupts and warns him to stay quiet. Ben’s “Karl! Now if you’re going to sleep with my daughter, I insist you call me ‘Ben’.” was one of the best delivered lines of the entire run of this show.
I’ve heard something like that a few times before, but it ended…differently. Usually something about a foot and an ass or a shotgun and a priest.
Sawyer interrupts before Karl can go all bad cop on Ben. Ben shifts his attention to the con man.
“You’re wasting your time, Yoda.” I love Star Wars references!
Ben wants to know why Sawyer left Kate behind. He pushes his buttons about Kate and Jack until Sawyer snaps and gives him a beating. I swear Ben enjoys getting whupped. He not only asks for it, but he doesn’t stop asking until somebody puts a fist in his gut.
After the beating, Sawyer again speaks for the audience and asks another one of those questions that many of us have screamed at the television whenever Ben causes more trouble.
“Anyone want to tell me why we’re keeping this guy alive?”
“We’re keeping him alive because he’s been on the island a lot longer than any of us, because he has information we need and because apart from his mouth, he’s completely harmless.”
“His mouth put that hole in your gut?”
“Ok, James, let’s execute him right here, right now, in front of his daughter.”
As Sawyer looks around the camp, the camera stops for a moment on Hurley, who gives a little disapproving head shake. Finally, Sawyer comes to his decision and spares Ben. But he warns Locke that it’s the wrong move.
“It’s only a matter of time before he gets us, Johnny. And I’ll bet he’s already figured out how he’s gonna do it.”
In another part of the jungle, Miles is kneeling beside Naomi’s body, apparently communicating with her, despite his lack of a dustbuster…er…ghostbuster rig.
While Miles does his thing, Faraday does his. He comments that the light in the jungle doesn’t “scatter” quite right.
Using the tone of voice most people use to talk down a jumper or retrieve a loaded gun from a hyperactive child, Kate tries to convince Faraday to put the gun away, but he explains that Miles would kill him if he did.
Jack interrupts, telling her with a wink to let the scenario play out as it will.
Miles confirms what Kate told him, that “they” didn’t kill her. As he explains this, the phone beeps again, telling them that another team member, Charlotte, is only three kilometers away. As he tries to gather the group to go after her, Jack tells him that he and Faraday need to put their guns down.
“Now why would I do that?”
“Because our friends are out in the jungle right now holding a gun to your head and his head. So I’m going to forget about the misunderstanding, just put the guns down.”
“C’mon, how stupid do you think I am?”
Never say this when you’re on television and not the star of the show.
Shots ring out.
“I don’t know, Miles. How stupid are you?”
In a desert in Tunisia, a jeep pulls in to a camp.
(*Star Wars geek sidenote: All the desert scenes in the Star Wars movies were filmed in Tunisia. This has nothing to do with Lost, but since Sawyer used “Yoda” in a sentence, I was on the track.)
Two women get out of the jeep and as they walk into the camp one finds a newspaper in French that declares Flight 815 found in the trench.
“How many different languages do you have to read that in before you believe that it’s true?”
“How many different languages are there?”
So…somebody other than the viewers thinks that an entire airplane crash has somehow been faked. Interesting.
It’s Marmaduke! YAY!!! I’m rich!!
This same woman bullies and bribes her way onto what appears to be an archaeological dig and proceeds to dig a collar with a familiar symbol on it out of the ground. It seems that not only was this collar around the neck of an Ursus maritimus, or polar bear, but she also seems to have known what she was looking for.
It’s fair to say that most archaeological digs don’t usually produce relics in the first place someone looks or in their first thirty seconds of digging.
(*Biology sidenote: Ursus maritmus is Latin for polar bear (duh!) but the “maritmus” part refers not to their predilection for cold temperatures but for their affinity for water. To find the remains of a polar bear in a desert is doubly strange for this reason.)
Speaking of water, this same woman finds herself hanging upside down over a bunch of it. With little hesitation, she pulls the emergency release on her parachute rig and falls into the murky water below. When she comes up for air, she see’s Locke’s band of merry men…er…people.
Out in the jungle, Juliet explains why she and Sayid came looking for Jack and Kate. Kate must be slipping, because she didn’t catch Jack’s fairly obvious wink that was meant to let her know that the cavalry had arrived. Juliet can’t hide her little smirk when she hears that. As always, Sayid remains the practical one and pays little attention to the brewing love triangle. He is more interested in their would be rescuers.
He gets Daniel to tell him his name and even Miles’ first name before the dustbuster…er, ghostbuster warns him not to give them his last name. Faraday further shares his occupation and it turns out that he, like his namesake, is a physicist, although he, like his namesake, doesn’t like being pigeon holed into a single job description.
(*Possibly important sidenote: The revelation that Faraday is a physicist makes his comment about the way the light scatters more interesting. As a physicist, he might be seeing an effect that the laymen on the island fail to observe, an effect that might relate to the reason that the island is so hard to find or get to. Or, he could just be a wacko.)
This light makes you all look fifty.
When Sayid asks Miles what he does, Miles answers with a snarky “I collect soil samples.”
He IS a dustbuster!
Not letting up his casual interrogation, Sayid notes that these two men don’t seem surprised that there are survivors of Flight 815, despite the fact that the world at large believes that the plane went down and killed everyone.
“Oh, my God. You guys were on Oceanic Flight 815, wow. Better?” A smart ass dustbuster.
Back with Locke’s group, their new arrival is professing amazement that the group is alive. She asks how many of them there are, but even Hurley is suspicious of her and asks why she wants to know. Despite his suspicions, he shares their numbers but is interrupted by Locke before he can give out too much information.
She asks about Claire’s baby and then wisely decides to leave off the questions until the group gets back to the freighter.
Locke takes up where she left off, asking about her team, the freighter and the helicopter. She reminds him that they need to stay in one place so the team can find them.
“See, there’s your problem. We don’t want to be found.”
Sayid is fiddling with the phone as they walk, but Miles warns him not to mess around with the device.
“It can’t hurt to try and call someone else.”
“Oh, it can hurt.”
That’s another one of those statements that I really wish someone would ask a follow up question about.
Suddenly the phone starts beeping again. It’s Charlotte and she’s moving towards them fast.
Raise your hand if you didn’t immediately shout “Vincent!” at your television. Those of you with your hands up are voted off the island.
Naturally, the fast moving blip is the puppy of doom, Vincent. Locke’s nobody’s fool and it’s a really old trick.
A toy plane sinks slowly to the bottom of a fish tank. The television is showing pictures of the Oceanic wreckage, including a very long shot of the pilot, Captain Seth Norris. The guy watching the set sees the camera zoom in on Norris’s hand and immediately picks up the phone and dials the hotline number.
He explains that he is certain that since the corpse on television isn’t wearing a wedding ring, it can’t be Seth Norris. A familiar voice takes over from the woman who answered the phone, but the guy refuses to back down, insisting that he is sure that the body is not that of the man he knows. When Abaddon asks him how he knows so much about Captain Norris, the mystery guy has an answer.
“Because I was supposed to be flying Oceanic 815 on that day.”
Mystery guy is grunting and huffing his way up an embankment. At the top, he pulls himself up and finds himself face to face with…a cow. He takes out his phone, which is damaged and then goes low tech with a flare gun.
“I’d like to vote for Fantasia, please.”
Locke’s party spots the flare and the new arrival tries to convince them to go and find the person who fired it. Locke’s not buying though.
“She’s lying. Whatever they came for, it isn’t us. We keep moving forward as planned.”
Sawyer just can’t resist. I probably couldn’t either.
“Sure, who are we to argue with Taller Ghost Walt?”
When the new gal tries to leave on her own, Locke uses his words to try to keep her with the group. Ben uses a gun.
Ben also gets another beating from Sawyer. I swear…masochist all the way.
It turns out that new gal is wearing a bulletproof vest. Not so much normal rescue castaway wear.
Back with Jack and company, Frank, the pilot, comes around. He doesn’t know where Charlotte is, but when they ask where the chopper is, he has an answer.
“I saw a cow.”
“Lapidus, where’s the chopper? Where did it crash?”
“Crash? What the hell kinda pilot do y’think I am? I put it down safe and sound, right over there.”
(*Google obsessive sidenote: Morris Lapidus was a well known architect. What that has to do with a drunken pilot is anyone’s guess.)
Sure enough, the copter is in a clearing, apparently intact.
Finally, we come to our fifth flashback-ee, Naomi. She’s going over the team roster with none other than Abaddon. A headcase, a ghostbuster, an anthropologist and a drunk. I was at a party like that once.
Naomi thinks that it’s a mistake to take a bunch of untrained civilian types into “unstable territory” with only her for protection.
“What if we find survivors from 815?”
“There were no survivors.”
“Yes, I know, but what if there are survivors?”
“There were no survivors of Oceanic 815. Don’t ask questions. Just do what you were hired for. Every member of this team was selected for a specific purpose.”
Abaddon wants her to get the job done without getting anyone killed and she finally agrees.
Take the job. Trust me, you’ll live forevuh.
Back in the clearing, Sayid is confident that the copter will fly. Miles asks if he can use the phone and Jack tries to get him to tell them what they’re doing here in exchange. Miles flips the deal around.
Jack gives him the phone and he gets a hold of Regina, presumably on the freighter.
Minkowski can’t come to the phone, so he tells her to have him call back as soon as he can.
That was weird and I’m certain that we were meant to take note of it, though why I can’t imagine.
As he hangs up, Faraday and Kate walk up carrying Naomi’s corpse. Miles objects to them taking the body, since it’s not Naomi, just “meat.”
Frank agrees with Miles, but for reasons more practical. Taking unneccessary weight would be foolish with a copter low on fuel. He promises to take the corpse on his next run.
Juliet is treating Frank’s wound and they have a little chat. He asks her name and when she tells him, he knows that she wasn’t on Flight 815. This revelation cranks up the dustbuster and he runs over to the “native” Juliet, waving a picture in her face. It seems that the little band of diverse experts was gathered together in search of Benjamin Linus.
I’m betting when they find him, he’ll provoke them into beating him up.
At that moment, Ben has other things on his mind. Sawyer has a gun to his head and he’s not in a beating up bug-eyed villains mood.
Locke tries to apologize for new gal getting shot, but she notes that he seemed ready to shoot her himself. He has an answer for her.
“What good would you be to me dead?”
Walking over to Sawyer, Locke gets his comeuppance.
“I guess this is the part where I’m supposed to say ‘I told you so’.”
“James, I stand corrected.”
Oddly, despite being unable to kill the bastard who took his kidney and ruined his life, Locke seems prepared to kill Ben without hesitation.
“It’s my mess. I’ll clean it up.”
Before he can pull the trigger, Ben has something to say. Yeah, that’s a surprise.
“John, listen. I have information that you need. I have answers.”
“What is the monster?”
“The black smoke. The monster. What is it?”
“I don’t know.”
All over the universe, a loud piercing scream cuts through the dark of the night as Lost fans are once again teased past all human reason.
Ben is about to die and he knows it. He plays a final card.
“Her name is Charlotte Lewis. Charlotte Staples Lewis.”
C.S. Lewis? You’re kidding, right? I mean, if her name was Phillipa Pullman, maybe, since we already have polar bears…
Ben rattles off a resume for C.S. Lewis, up to and including who’s on her team and what she had for breakfast.
“I know what they want.”
“What do they want?”
“Me, James. They want me.”
Rawr. Who doesn’t?
When Locke asks how he knows all this, Ben tells him, “Because I have a man on their boat.”