We made it, guys! Season five! We’re here! I finally finished watching all of Lost. I am officially caught up.
Does that mean this is my last Overthinking Lost post? Hardly! This is only the beginning. There is so much packed into these last seventeen episodes that it doesn’t seem fair to write just one post about it. So, starting this week, I’ll try to tackle some of the show’s main themes: faith versus science, fate versus free will, and so forth. Along the way I’ll try to make some predictions, too, about what may be to come.
This week’s topic: faith versus science! Which side is winning? Which side will win? But first, my recaps for season five.
Episode 5.1 (“Because You Left”): Remember how I said that too much plot happened in the fourth season? Well, everything just got plot-ier. Back on the mainland, Sayid tries to break Hurley out of the institution but then gets shot with some poison darts. Sun meets with Charles Widmore because she wants to kill Ben, and a lawyer visits Kate demanding she take a maternity test to see if she’s really related to Aaron. Back on the Island, time is out of sync for some mysterious reason, and Faraday describes it in the same exact way Dr. Farnsworth explained it in that old Futurama episode. Ah, the old needle slipping on a record player metaphor. Gotta love it. Sci-fi writers better come up with a better analogy, though, because I’m not sure I even know what a record player is. Is it some kind of larger iPod?
While skipping around in time, Locke gets shot by Ethan and is told by Richard that he needs to die and bring the Oceanic Six back–or else! Faraday talks to 2001-Desmond and tells him to visit his mother… and also Faraday was back in the 70s grooving with the Dharma Initiative.
I’m sure even more things happened in this episode but these are the things I remember.
Episode 5.2 (“The Lie”): In the past, Jack et. al agreed to lie about what happened back on the Island. Hurley’s like, “Uh, why?” and Jack gives a dumb answer about protecting their friends. To which Hurley and I say, “Um, the Island just disappeared. Trust me, no one is finding that thing.” Jack gives another dumb, illogical reason and everyone else agrees with him.
Back in the present (?), everyone on the Island is busy hopping through time, so I decide to call them “The Island Hoppers.” “Juliet and the Island Hoppers.” I’d listen to that band. Anyway, the Island Hoppers get flaming-arrowed and arrested by some 1950s Army men, who believe they own the Island. Meanwhile, back on the mainland, Hurley saves Sayid by bringing him home to Cheech Marin, who brings Sayid to get some medical attention. Some medical attention… Jack Shephard-style!
And then. And then Sayid tells Hurley the thing I want to frame and put on a wall next to all the Losties so I can point to it whenever they’re about to do something really, really frigging stupid: “FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DON’T TRUST BEN LINUS.” Jesus, if I lived in Lost Land and that sign actually existed, I’d be pointing to it all day. Really, Losties. STOP TRUSTING BEN LINUS. Thanks.
Episode 5.3 (“Jughead”): On the mainland, Desmond tries to track down Faraday’s mother, but only finds out that A) Faraday’s research, which was funded by Charles Widmore, was shut down, and B) it was because he screwed up and unstuck this poor girl (I’m assuming some grad student slave) in time. Back on the Island, Juliet infers that the 1950s Army guys are really Others, because they can speak sexy, sexy Latin. These 1950s Others are worried because there’s a fricking unexploded hydrogen bomb leaking radiation over the Island, so Faraday tells them to bury it. Locke meets up with Richard, who of course is also there, and tells him to witness his birth in 1956. And then my brain implodes because, oh, the paradoxes. I bet Richard is also his own grandpa, and Charles Widmore’s ultimate goal is to go back in time and kill Hitler.
Episode 5.4 (“The Little Prince”): On the mainland, Jack worries that the same guys who are trying to kill Sayid are after Kate, so he meets up with Kate while she’s following that sketchy lawyer guy from the first episode of the season. The lawyer is Claire’s mom’s, but she’s suing Oceanic, not Kate—and also he’s Ben’s lawyer, too. On the Island, everyone’s still time-skipping and trying to find the Orchid, ‘cause Locke’s convinced (based on his wacko logic) that going there will magically fix the time skips. And it will, because this is Lost, and that’s how things work in this crazy universe.
Episode 5.5 (“This Place is Death”): Back in 1988, Jin, who wasn’t dead, hangs out with Rousseau and her crew of French scientists, who are being eaten up and possibly brainwashed by Smokey the Monster, which is protecting the Temple Ben Linus mentioned back in the fourth season. In the present, Ben convinces Jack and Sun to go back to the Island via Faraday’s mother, Eloise Hawking, and also Desmond is there, too. Thankfully, Desmond is smart enough to say, “Oh, no. There’s no way in hell I’m trusting you crazy people”; he runs off.
Back on the Island, Charlotte dies of time sickness—although shouldn’t she be okay because she has Faraday as a Constant? I’m really not understanding this Constant thing, am I? I need to watch that episode again. Locke finally makes it to the Orchid, where Christian Shephard tells him the time skips are his fault because he was supposed to move the frozen donkey wheel, not Ben. Also, for the billionth time, Locke must die and bring the Oceanic Six back to the Island or bad things dun dun dun.
Episode 5.6 (“316”): In this episode, a lot of nothing happens until finally Jack, Hurley, Sayid, Ben, Kate, Sun, and even a beardless Frank Lapidus are on a plane flying back to the Island. Then there’s a flash of light and suddenly they all find themselves back on the Island.
Episode 5.7 (“The Life and Times of Jeremy Bentham”): In this episode, Locke pushes the donkey wheel and ends up in Tunisia convalescing in a hospital set up, it seems, by Charles Widmore. Widmore gives Locke info on the whereabouts of the Oceanic Six, and says that he was once tricked by Ben, too, into pushing the donkey wheel. (Widmore should have read my sign.) Locke goes on adventures trying to convince the Oceanic Six to come back to the Island, but the Universe is conspiring against him. Not only does no one want to come back, but most of them are dicks to him, especially Jack and Kate. They like pointing out how obsessed and lonely he is, and also his girlfriend Helen died. (Katie Sagal! Noooo!) All of this combined freaks Locke out and makes him decide to kill himself, but Ben talks him out of it. Again I point to my framed sign, but sadly Locke doesn’t read it. Once Ben gets the info he needs out of Locke, he chokes a bitch. Then Locke’s body returns to the Island and he comes back to life—or does he?!
Episode 5.8 (“LaFleur”): Finally, an episode that (mostly) makes sense! (Those time skips really weren’t good for my sanity.) Due to Locke’s pushing the donkey wheel back on track, the time skips stop for good, leaving The Island Hoppers back in 1974 along with the Dharma Initiative. Sawyer and Juliet save Amy, a Dharma lady, by killing some Others who had kidnapped her. Richard, of course, ain’t happy, but Sawyer fixes everything by telling the truth. Wow, that’s new for Sawyer, isn’t it? I mean, for Jim LaFleur. Three years later, The Island Hoppers are now working for the Dharma Initiative, Sawyer and Juliet are a happy if (I think) ill-matched couple*, and Jin finds Jack (and Kate—hello, love quadrangle!) and the rest wandering in the wilderness.
*I know, everyone in the world loves this couple but me. I do, however, like that Juliet seemed to make Sawyer into a mellower, saner guy. I was going to write a post about how Hurley should be the leader of the Losties, but “LaFleur” and “Namaste” made a really good argument for our friend James.
Episode 5.9 (“Namaste”): In 2007, Frank Lapidus lands the Ajira flight, and Ben and Sun run off to the main island. Or, they would have, but Sun bashed him over the head with an oar. I love Sun. In 1977, Jack, Kate, and Hurley get initiated into Dharmaville, and Sayid gets captured as a Hostile.
Episode 5.10 (“He’s Our You”): In the past, child Sayid liked to kill chickens. Then he killed people for Ben Linus, and then he was captured by Ilana the mysterious bounty hunter. In 1977, Sayid is taken to Oldham (the “he” of the title), who gives him a truth serum. Later, Ben Linus lights a VW bus on fire and breaks Sayid out of jail. Sayid thanks him by shooting him in the chest. In my little notebook, I write, “YES!” even though in my heart I know Ben’s going to survive. Still, props to Sayid for trying.
Episode 5.11 (“Whatever Happened, Happened”): In the past, Kate became closer with Cassidy but becomes more and more worried that she’ll lose Aaron. Ultimately she decides to leave Aaron with his grandma and find Claire for him. Hey, Kate finally has a motivation that doesn’t involve her running away from something AND doesn’t involve boning someone! Good for her. Meanwhile, in 1977, Juliet tries to fix up Ben but needs Jack’s help. Jack says, “Nahhh.” Heh. Suck it, Ben. Unfortunately, Juliet, Kate, and Sawyer (on Juliet’s orders) kidnap dying Ben and bring him to Richard, who brings Ben to the Temple to heal him and “take his innocence.” Ewww, Richard. The kid’s twelve. You’re, like, 200. Or 2200. Either way, it’s creepy.
Episode 5.12 (“Dead Is Dead”): In the present, Ben decides to find Smokey and be judged for his sin of letting Alex die. Smokey’s cool with it, mostly. Anyway, he lets Ben live. Alex’s ghost (or maybe Smokey pretending to be Alex, or maybe Someone Else pretending to be Alex) tells Ben to do whatever John Locke says or else. In the flashbacks, Ben steals Alex from Rousseau even though Widmore told him to kill her. On the mainland before the Ajira flight, Ben tracks down Penny to fulfill his promise to Widmore. Ben shoots Des (no!) but hesistates before killing Penny when he sees baby Charlie. Then Des lays the smackdown on Ben, which is why he’s all bruised and battered when he gets on flight 316.
Episode 5.13 (“Some Like It Hoth”): In the past, Miles could sorta talk to dead people, and also he had no dad. In 1977, his dad is, unsurprisingly, Pierre Chang. Phil has the security tape showing that Sawyer and Kate brought Ben to the Hostiles, so Sawyer beats Phil up and stuffs him under the sink. Hurley and Miles bond over their ghost whispering abilities and The Empire Strikes Back, and Faraday returns to the Island. I’m sure he’ll be fine.
Episode 5.14 (“The Variable”): In the past, Eloise Hawking withheld her love from her son, Dan, pushing him to nurture his genius gene. In 1977, Faraday warns Pierre Chang not to dig under the Swan, because it will cause The Incident. Faraday also reveals to Jack and the gang that he plans on exploding Jughead at the Swan site to prevent The Incident, thus changing the timeline and preventing Oceanic 815 from crashing in the first place. Faraday runs to the Others, demanding access to Jughead, and then his mom, who is pregnant with him, shoots him in the heart. Worst. Mother. Ever.
Episode 5.15 (“Follow the Leader”): In 1977, Richard and Eloise decide to help Jack find Jughead so they can prevent The Incident and reset the show. Kate thinks this is all a Bad Idea, and I… I agree with Kate. What the hell, show? Since when do I ever agree with Kate? This is getting spooky. Back in Dharmaville, Phil and Radzinsky have Sawyer and Juliet all tied up; Sawyer makes a deal that he’ll draw them a map to the Others if he and Jules can get a ticket on the next sub out of there. Kate is also captured and put on the sub for maximum awkwardness. Pierre Chang finally believes that Miles is his son, that he and Hurley are from the future, and that he needs to follow Faraday’s advice and evacuate the Island of non-essential personnel before The Incident happens. In 2007, Seemingly Alive Locke (the new Leader) hangs out with Sun, Ben, and Richard and then brings them and all the Others on a trip to visit Jacob. Did I say visit Jacob? I meant kill Jacob.
Episode 5.16-17 (“The Incident”): In the 1800s, Jacob and a friend I’ll call Esau for the time being hang out by the foot statue to watch the Black Rock arrive and talk philosophy. And by “philosophy,” I mean that Esau wants to kill Jacob. Hey, just like Locke! That’s… weird. Jacob, however, has other plans besides dying. He flashbacks throughout the 20th century, patting Jack and Kate and Locke and Hurley and Sayid and Sun and Jin on the back, and helping Ilana recouperate from some mysterious wounds. He also gives Hurley a guitar case for some reason.
In 1977, Kate convinces Juliet and, by extension, Sawyer, to get off the sub and stop Jack from blowing up the Island and resetting the show. When they get back to the Island, they meet up with Rose, Bernard, and the dog, who are all super-cute and also my heroes. Jack and Sayid remove the bomb core from Jughead and sneak into the Barracks, but Roger Linus (!) shoots Sayid. Hurley, Jin, and Miles come in a VW bus to save them and bring them to the Swan. But before they get there, they need to convince Kate, Juliet, and Sawyer. Sawyer and Jack come to fisticuffs—Jack wants to reset history so he can get Kate back (which is both nauseating and illogical), while Sawyer would prefer to keep history going for Juliet (which is both cute and reasonable). After all this, Juliet changes her mind again and so does Kate for some reason, and they all run to blow up the Swan. (Except Sayid. He’s not running anywhere.)
In 2007, meanwhile, Richard and Locke lead everyone to the shadow of the statue to find Jacob. Locke and Ben go inside for a visit. Also, Lapidus, Ilana, and Bram catch up to them, and Ilana has a surprise: the crate she’s carrying is filled with Real John Locke’s body! Zuh-wha? Then who is in the statue? Why, it’s Esau (I think)! He’s taken John Locke’s form! Which is super-depressing, really, because that means Locke really did die back in that motel room. I hope he either comes back for reals in season six or gets a proper send-off. Anyway, Fake Locke manipulates (!) Ben Linus (!) into knifing Jacob, although if you ask me Jacob wanted to die. You know, like Dumbledore?
But let’s get back to 1977. Jack tosses the bomb core into the hole that’s eventually going to be the hatch, but it totally doesn’t blow up! So… the dynamite they found on the Black Rock was more volatile than A FRIGGING NUCLEAR WEAPON? Eh, sure. I’ll accept it, for the drama. Just like I accepted Sun’s not being flashed off the airplane with everyone else. Anyhoo, the hatch starts electromagneting, and some metal spikes impale Phil (yay) and drag in Juliet (boo). Sawyer tries to drag Juliet back up, but this is a season finale here; she ain’t getting out of there alive. She falls down the hole and smacks the bomb core a few times to make it explode. Then flashy flashy flash flash and the show is over.