Tagged: season 3

3.13 “The Man from Tallahassee”

Kate, Locke, and Sayid invade the Barracks in an attempt to rescue Jack, only to find that he’s not interested in being rescued. But when Kate and Sayid are captured, Locke diverts from the plan and goes rogue on a solo mission of his own.

Written by Drew Goddard & Jeff Pinkner
Directed by Jack Bender

Flashback

Long after his father stole his kidney, Locke decided to stop attending his therapy sessions, which caused his disability benefits to be suspended.

While in the depths of his depression, Locke was visited by a young man named Peter Talbot who asked for his help, believing his mother being swindled by Locke’s father. Locke found and confronted his father, Anthony Cooper, angrily warning him to end his con and leave Peter’s mother alone. He threatened to tell Peter’s mother everything about Anthony if he didn’t do as Locke ordered. With seemingly no alternative, Anthony bitterly agreed to Locke’s terms.

Locke was happy that he’d finally scored a victory against his father, preventing another victim from suffering at Anthony’s hands. But a day or two later, a pair of detectives visited Locke at his apartment and asked him questions about Peter Talbot, who they revealed to be dead. Locke immediately knew that his father, knowing Peter to be the reason for Locke’s intervention, had had Peter killed so he could continue his con.

Locke visited his father at Anthony’s high-rise apartment to confront him once again, this time about Peter’s death. But Anthony said he was a con man, not a murderer. Just when Locke was starting to buy his father’s story, Anthony got the drop on him and shoved him out of a plate-glass window, causing Locke to fall 8 stories. His back was broken from the impact, though the fact that he survived the drop was deemed a miracle. After the attack, Anthony fled the country, while Locke was left to endure a long and grueling rehabilitation.

Now

While Sayid, Kate, and Locke watch Jack play football in the Others’ Barracks with Tom and Juliet, Danielle leaves them without saying anything. As they continue watching in frustration, Ben wheels out of his house in a wheelchair and chats amicably with Jack, even shaking his hand.

The group retreats into the jungle, and Kate and Sayid argue about how to proceed, because from the looks of things, Jack may not want to be rescued. Sayid suggests caution, but Kate refuses to listen. Locke comments that he’s never known Jack to do anything without a good reason, so perhaps they just need to figure out what Jack is up to. He suggests they wait until dark and go find out if Jack wants to be rescued or not.

They follow Locke’s advice and make a plan to sneak into the small house Jack is living in alone. Kate enters first and finds Jack casually playing an upright piano. She tells him she came to rescue him, but he points out that there are video cameras all over the house and that they’re being watched right now. Others barge into the house and capture her, and Sayid is taken as well, but Locke is nowhere to be found.

Ben awakens in his home to the sound of someone in his house. Locke strides in and holds a gun to him, and asks where he can find the submarine. Alex hears them talking but Locke grabs her and pulls her into Ben’s closet while Tom and Richard Alpert enter the house, reporting that Kate and Sayid have found the Others and been captured. Ben orders that they separate Kate and Sayid and find out how they found the Barracks, but asks Richard privately to “bring me the man from Tallahassee.” When Richard leaves, Locke emerges from the closet and sends Alex to retrieve Sayid’s backpack for him. After she’s gone, Ben asks for his wheelchair, and Locke obliges. Ben asks how Locke intends to pilot the sub alone, but Locke doesn’t answer. So Ben drops the pretenses and explains that he knows Locke has no intention of taking the submarine anywhere. He’s figured out that Locke intends to use explosives from the Flame station to destroy it. Locke tries to deny that Ben could know him well enough to have figured that out, but Ben shocks him with intimate knowledge of Locke’s past — the same kind of detailed information that the Others have about Jack, and presumably, all of the castaways.

Kate is placed in some sort of rec room, where she’s visited by Jack. Kate is convinced that the Others must have done something to Jack to make him so amenable to their ways, but Jack denies it, explaining his deal with Ben to leave the island, which is scheduled to happen first thing in the morning. But he promises to return with help to rescue for her and everyone else. They share an emotional goodbye, after which Kate still can’t quite believe any of this is happening.

While they wait for Alex to return, Ben reveals that he’s desperately curious to know details about how Locke’s paralysis was healed when he arrived on the island. Locke realizes that Ben’s curiosity stems from the fact that he hasn’t recovered from his operation as fast as he hoped he would, and taunts him for this, asking how he ever managed to get sick in the first place in a place that’s known to heal injuries. The implication Locke makes is that the island doesn’t have the same affinity for Ben as it does for himself. Ben insinuates that Locke wants to destroy the submarine because if he were to ever leave the island, he might end up paralyzed again.

Sayid is chained up in a small playground near one of the Others’ houses. He’s found there by Alex, who takes his pack, but not before he comments that she looks like her mother. Alex claims that her mother is dead, but Sayid sadly replies, “I’m sure that’s what they told you.”

Locke asks Ben for something to eat, and Ben tells him to help himself to what’s in the refrigerator. While Locke eats, Ben tries to appeal to him not to blow up the submarine. Ben reveals that unlike most of his people, who were recruited, he was born here, on the island. He says that he needs the submarine to maintain the illusion that those who were recruited to join the Others can leave if they want to. In exchange for not destroying the sub, Ben offers to show Locke the secrets of the island. He tells Locke that somewhere on the island, there’s a very large box that can conjure up anything one desires. Locke retorts that he hopes the box is big enough for Ben to imagine himself up a new submarine. Ben asks why Locke is so angry, wanting to punish him and the Others, and Locke states his belief that the Others are cheating. They have electricity, technology, communication with the outside world, and can come and go from the island at will. He calls Ben a hypocrite who doesn’t deserve to be on the island, and says that if Ben really knew what the island was, he would know better than to “cheat” in this way. Ben asks how Locke could possibly know the island better than he does, when he’s lived here his entire life, and Locke says it’s because Ben is in a wheelchair and he’s not.

Alex returns to Ben’s house and Locke explains that Alex will take him to the submarine and once there, he’ll let her go. Ben tries to play his last card, divulging his deal with Jack to leave the island in less than an hour. And since the electromagnetic anomaly caused by the destruction of the Swan station destroyed the Others’ ability to communicate with the outside world, once the submarine leaves the island, it can never find its way back. So there was no point in destroying the sub, since no one will be able to find and come to the island either way. Locke decides he doesn’t care and leaves the house with Alex as planned.

On the way to the sub, Alex warned Locke that he was being manipulated, because her father excelled at getting people to do what he wanted by making them think it was their own idea. She takes him to a dock close to the Barracks, and he lets her go as promised. Nearby, Danielle watches with deep emotion, getting her first-ever look at her teenage daughter. But Alex goes unaware of her mother’s presence.

Jack and Juliet stop by Ben’s house on their way to the submarine, to say goodbye and ask for one last favor. Jack requests that his friends be released, and Ben, seeing no point in keeping them captive, agrees. Juliet thanks Ben for keeping his promise to let her leave the island, and she and Jack set off.

As Jack and Juliet are escorted to the submarine, they run square into Locke, who’s soaking wet. He apologizes to Jack just as his C4 detonates and the submarine is blown to smithereens. Jack watches the sub burn and then locks eyes with Locke, with a murderous expression on his face.

Locke is captured and taken by the Others to some sort of underground holding cell. Ben and Richard visit him there the next day, where Locke tells him to drop the charade. He knows that Ben wanted the submarine to be destroyed the entire time Locke was plotting to do it. Ben agrees, explaining that he needed a way to keep Jack from leaving the island that didn’t involve killing him, because either of those actions would indicate weakness on his part, and spell the end of his leadership over the Others. When a disgusted Locke says he hopes Ben isn’t going to start talking about the “Magic Box” again, Ben says that instead of talking, he’s going to show Locke what came out of the Box. He and Richard march Locke down the hall to another holding cell, where Ben says that Locke seems to have a special communion with the island, which makes him very, very important. Ben says he wants to help Locke, suggesting that the island has a destiny for Locke that Ben would like to help him fulfill. They open the door to the holding cell, and Locke is beyond stunned to see that inside is none other than his father, Anthony Cooper — the man responsible for every bad thing that’s ever happened to him, including his paralysis — bound and gagged and scared out of his wits.

  • Locke was nearly murdered when he was pushed through an 8th-story window by his treacherous, criminal father, Anthony Cooper.
    Question: How did Locke lose the use of his legs four years ago? [.04]
  • Locke certainly thought he was doing something to help his friends by removing their ability to leave the island. It remains to be seen if he was correct.
    Question: Will Locke do something to help Jack, Kate, and Sawyer eventually, since Boone told him he couldn’t do anything for them yet? [3.03]
  • When Locke learned from Mikhail Bakunin that the Others have their own submarine, allowing them to come and go from the island at will, he became angry that the Others were “cheating,” and believed that their reliance on modern conveniences made them unworthy of being here. So he decided to destroy the submarine, which he accomplished with a little manipulative help from Ben, who also wanted the sub destroyed for his own purposes.
    Question: What is Locke up to? Why did he steal C4 from the Flame station and bring it along to the Barracks? [3.12]

  • Where is the Magic Box that Ben told Locke about? Given that everything Ben said during that conversation was part of a ploy to manipulate him… was Ben telling the truth about the Box? Does it even exist?
  • Where is the underground holding cell that Locke is being held prisoner in?
  • How did Anthony Cooper wind up on the island? Was he magically brought there by the island, as Ben suggested?


“The Man from Tallahassee” is the sixth Locke-centric episode of the series.

I never noticed before, but the dinner tray Locke ate off of in his flashback has symbols around its outside — some of which look a little like hieroglyphs.

It’s so funny now to look back on this episode and see just how many lies Ben spun for Locke. He claimed to have been born on the island, and then there was the whole “magic box” thing. All of this was a ruse, as we would find out soon enough.

Okay, the whole thing about the electromagnetic pulse knocking out the island’s communications with the outside world is something that I didn’t entirely pick up on the significance of the first time around. It kept nagging me in Season 5 that the only way the Oceanic 6 could return to the island was to use the vaguely-supernatural assistance of whatever happened to them on Ajira 315, which they found out about at the Lamp Post. I kept wondering why they couldn’t just sail back to the island the way the submarine did for so many years — from the Dharma days right up until very recently. Of course there was an answer for this, but it was never mentioned again after Season 3, and I for one could have used a reminder.

How cool is it that Locke’s favorite phrase — “Don’t tell me what I can’t do” — was something he picked up from the physical therapist who helped him learn how to function in a wheelchair?

What a bravura performance from Terry O’Quinn. He got to play pretty much every side of Locke’s personality, and though most people remember his performance here for the heartbreaking scene in which the physical therapist places him in his wheelchair for the first time, I was equally moved by the emotionally-charged scenes where he confronted his father, barely able to hold back the rage and pain he felt at just being in this wretched man’s presence. This is the performance that O’Quinn won his Emmy for, and he earned it.

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3.12 “Par Avion”

Claire devises a plan to use migratory birds to get everyone rescued, but Desmond and Charlie earn her ire by sabotaging her efforts. Sayid, Locke, Kate, and Danielle are shocked at what they find when they reach the place where the Others live. (Includes My Big Theory about Jacob’s Lists!)

Written by Christina M. King & Jordan Rosenberg
Directed by Paul A. Edwards

Flashback

Claire was once in an accident involving a truck that collided with her compact car. Her mother was in the car with her at the time, and was thrown through the vehicle’s windshield on impact. Claire received only minor injuries, but Carole was severely hurt. Carole was left in a coma after the surgery, and the doctors believed that she might never wake up. Claire was shocked to learn that all of the expenses for her mother’s care had already been taken care of, but the doctor withheld the identity of the person responsible. One day Carole was visited at the hospital by none other than Christian Shephard, Jack’s father. Claire didn’t recognize him, believing him to be merely an American doctor called in as some kind of specialist. But when it’s revealed that Christian was the one paying for Carole’s hospital bills, Claire demanded to know who he really was. He revealed himself to be her father!

A day or two later, Claire returned to work — a tattoo/piercing parlor — and was visited there by her father, who asked for just a few minutes of her time. She wasn’t interested but finally agreed when he promised to be leaving that night for the U.S. and that she would never see him again. Christian explains that he and Carole had “a fling” years ago, and that he was at home in L.A. when she called to inform him that she was pregnant. He returned to Sydney many times over the next few years, staying over at Carole’s and spending time with the both of them. He stopped coming because Carole’s sister Lindsey hated him, and because Carole didn’t like the fact that he had another family in the States. When Claire asked why he came now, he said it was because he wanted to help, and suggested that it was time to consider ending her mother’s suffering. But Claire was outraged and asked him to go back home to his “real family.” Before leaving, he warned her not to keep her mother living off of machines because of her own guilt.

Some years later, when Claire was pregnant and nearly due, she visited her mother and told her that she was leaving for L.A. and giving away her baby. She offered her still-comatose mother an apology, having had a terrible argument with her in the car on the day of the crash, even telling her she wished her mother was dead. She left for Los Angeles on Oceanic 815, not knowing if her mother would ever wake up.

Now

After staring down death inside Hurley’s van, Charlie decides to stop moping and enjoy life, so he treats Claire to breakfast in bed and a special picnic. But just as they’re about to start their picnic, Desmond arrives and asks Charlie to join him hunting boar, implying that it’s safer than what he was going to end up doing today. While they’re talking, Claire spots a flock of migratory birds flying overhead, and has a revelation, believing she knows how to get everyone rescued. She runs back to camp and asks Sun and Jin for Jin’s fishing nets, hoping to catch one or more of the birds, explaining that they have to hurry because the birds are flying south and will only be over the island today. Claire says that the birds are tagged, and that they’ll eventually land in Australia or someplace to the south, so if they could catch one and attach a message to the tag, they could send an S.O.S. Charlie senses that this plan could have something to do with Desmond’s latest vision of his death, and he dampens her enthusiasm, refusing to help and questioning her abilities.

Sayid and Locke argue about the validity of the map Sayid took from the Flame station, which their group is using to find the Others’ home. Kate and Danielle talk privately about Alex, and Danielle reveals that she hasn’t asked Kate anything about her daughter because she knows Alex will remember nothing about her. Kate then asks Mikhail about how he came to be on the island. He begins to explain that he was recruited by someone when he was 24, but Kate points out that she only asked how, not when. Mikhail says he was brought to the island by the submarine, and Kate asks if the Others can just come and go from the island at will. Mikhail says that they can leave the island anytime they want, but returning is impossible now because the underwater beacon they used to reach the island from the sub was knocked out by the electromagnetic pulse that occurred when the Swan station imploded. Kate asks why they would want to come back, and Mikhail says she can’t possibly understand because she isn’t on “the list.” He says that the man who brought all of his people here — all of the Others — is “a magnificent man,” implying that the man in question is the mysterious Jacob. Mikhail reveals that none of them were on Jacob’s list, because they are all flawed in some way. Sayid asserts that the Others are not as omniscient as they want the survivors to believe, to which Mikhail replies by telling each one of them things that he knows about them, including their full names. He singles Locke out in the end, suggesting that he is different from his friends and somehow more important. Danielle interrupts their sparring with the discovery of a huge series of pylons extending around a huge valley like a fence.

Sun and Jin help Claire build her bird trap, and they almost succeed in catching one until Desmond fires his shotgun nearby and scares the flock away. He claims to have been hunting boar with no idea that Claire’s trap was so close, but Claire is angry and accuses him of sabotaging her efforts because he and Charlie are up to something. She marches back to camp and demands that Charlie tell her what’s going on with him and Desmond. But he cages up and refuses to tell her, so she angrily calls him a liar and kicks him out of her tent again.

Sayid recognizes some of the technology at work in the series of pylons and says that it’s some kind of defense perimeter around the Barracks. He suggests that they go around the pylons, but Mikhail points out that they surround the Barracks all the way around, and Sayid’s map verifies this. Impatient with all the talking, Locke grabs Mikhail and shoves him through the perimeter. The pylons activate, Mikhail says “thank you” to Locke, and he bleeds from the ears until he dies. Sayid and Kate are angry that Locke acted without consulting them, and Sayid accuses Locke of having ulterior motives for coming out here with them — something other than rescuing Jack. When Kate suggests they chop down a tree and use it to go over the fence, she retrieves an axe from Locke’s backpack only to discover a bundle of C4 explosives that Locke took from the Flame station before it exploded.

Locke, Sayid, Kate, and Danielle construct a contraption that will allow them to climb up over the sonic fence. Kate, being the lightest, volunteers to go first, and she carefully climbs up and over to safety on the other side. The others follow.

Claire decides to spy on Charlie and Desmond, and follows Desmond out to some bluffs where he catches one of the birds for her. Claire confronts him and asks how he knew to come here for the bird, saying she watched him walk straight here with no doubt about where he was going. She’s tired of being treated like she’s stupid, so Desmond finally breaks down and explains everything. He says that he knew to come here to these bluffs because Charlie was originally going to walk here after his argument with Claire, and wind up getting killed while trying to capture the bird.

Claire returns to Charlie carrying the bird, and he observes that she was right: it’s tagged. She tells him what Desmond told her, and the two of them make up. He later helps her send off a very moving message attached to the bird that concludes by asking whoever finds it to not give up on finding them all. As they release the bird, Claire tells Charlie that she’s not giving up on him, either.

Inside the perimeter fence, Sayid, Kate, Locke, and Danielle find the Others’ home, the Barracks. As they sneak up on the place from a distance through thick foliage, they’re stunned to spot Jack not looking anything like a prisoner at all, but more like a happy guest, playing a friendly game of football with Tom.

  • Claire Littleton is Christian Shephard’s illegitimate daughter. Claire had been told by her mother that her father died when she was two years old, but it was a lie to keep her from ever knowing the truth. This means that Jack and Claire are half-siblings, though they do not know it.
    Question: Who is Christian Shephard’s daughter? [2.20]

  • Why did the Dharma Initiative have a sonic defense barrier around their Barracks? Who were they trying to keep out? The Others?
  • What is Locke up to? Why did he steal C4 from the Flame station and bring it along to the Barracks?
  • What became of Carole Littleton? Did she ever wake up from her coma?
  • Will anyone ever find Claire’s message attached to the bird?


“Par Avion” is the third Claire-centric episode of the series.

This is the fourteenth episode of the series to begin with a close-up on a single eye opening. It’s the first time that the show uses the effect twice in a row: once as the cold open into Claire’s flashback, and then again when Claire wakes up from her dream and the scene jumps to the present on the island.

Mikhail’s explanation to Kate about the “man who brought all of my people to the island” pretty much tells us all we need to know about the history of the Others. We know that the man he was referring to is Jacob, and Mikhail spelled it out to us that Jacob is personally responsible for bringing all of the Others to the island — meaning that none of them are indigenous to the island after all. The Others’ purpose here is tied to Jacob’s struggle against his nemesis, which can only mean that the entire mystery of just what the island is, is wrapped up in those two very powerful figures. Is the island a place specifically constructed as the location where these two beings exist answer some eternal question about the human condition?

My Big Theory about Jacob’s Lists: One thing I don’t quite understand is the exact purpose of the Others. They obviously serve Jacob in some way, and I believe they exist primarily to carry out a set of age-old instructions that he set forth long ago, that went something like this: anytime I bring a new group of people to the island, study them and weed out the good from the bad based on a list I give you with all of the good people on it. Find them and bring them into your society. Okay, this part I get. What confuses me is the fact that these “lists” of Jacob’s are held up as the highest and most important standard among the Others — the determination that someone is worthy of serving Jacob. Yet Jacob himself, as we saw in the Season 5 finale “The Incident,” personally met each one of our not-on-the-list survivors at some point in their lives and physically touched them, marking them in some very important (but yet to be explained) way. So if the survivors who were touched by Jacob are important enough for him to take such a personal interest in… why were none of them on his “Good people from the Oceanic 815 survivors” list? I believe that he has some very important purpose for each of the ones he touched — Jack, Kate, Sawyer, Hurley, Sayid, Locke, Sun, and Jin — a purpose very different than what he has planned for the Others. The “touched” people are some kind of ace in the hole on Jacob’s part, a piece of a very elaborate endgame that everything on the show has been leading to. And I believe this plan of Jacob’s will be explained probably in the series finale, when it is enacted.

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3.11 “Enter 77”

Sayid, Locke, and Kate find a new Dharma station that houses a mysterious man claiming to be the last living member of the Dharma Initiative.

Written by Carlton Cuse & Damon Lindelof
Directed by Stephen Williams

Flashback

Sometime after the Gulf War, Sayid lived in Paris under the name Najeev, claiming to be Syrian. He was hired as a chef by a man named Sami, who recognized Sayid as a fellow Iraqi. Sayid agreed though initially suspicious, and his misgivings proved true: Sami had no interest in employing Sayid. He wanted revenge for his wife Amira, also an Iraqi national, who knew Sayid as her torturer many years ago. Though Sayid continually denied that he’d ever tortured or even met Amira, he was kept captive by the couple in the kitchen of their restaurant for days while they Sami him again and again to admit to his crime or die. When Amira made an emotional appeal to him, asking to be shown the respect that she deserves as someone who suffered so terribly at his hands, Sayid finally admitted that he remembered her, and he was her torturer after all. He begged her forgiveness, and she gave it, promising to have her husband release him because she didn’t want to be the kind of person that Sayid was — someone who hurt people.

Now

Jin finds a ping-pong table out in the jungle while searching for food, and Hurley oversees a project to put it back together, assuming it’s the table from the Swan station, blown out into the jungle when the station imploded. Sawyer finds Paulo with a magazine that was his before he was taken by the Others, and again complains about everyone poaching his stash while he was gone. When he locates a ping-pong ball for them to use with the table, he proposes that the survivors’ best player plays him for his stash. Sun suggests that if Sawyer loses, he can no longer call anyone by any of his trademark nicknames for a week. To Sawyer’s surprise, Hurley is the survivors’ best candidate for the job, and he trounces Sawyer with ease. Later, Hurley gives Sawyer back some of his magazines anyway as a peace offering, and says that he knows Sawyer’s worried about Kate but she’ll be fine. Sawyer’s bad attitude remains intact, though he’s unable to pop off a new nickname for Hurley to vent his frustrations, because he lost the game.

Kate, Sayid, Locke, and Danielle head north on a bearing of 305, on Locke’s orders, looking for the home of the Others. Sayid doesn’t believe in Locke’s scripture-inspired heading, but he soon stumbles across a cow and follows it to a farmhouse with other animals and a familiar looking man with a patch over one eye — the same man he and several others saw watching them on a monitor in the Pearl station — who’s now wearing a Dharma jumpsuit. Sayid brings his team to the outskirts of the building, and they note a large satellite dish on top of the place, which Sayid says is big enough to send a signal thousands of miles away if it’s working. He asks Danielle if this is the radio tower she sent her distress call from, but she says no. Sayid hands over his rifle to Kate, suggesting that if he approaches the building unarmed that he won’t be seen as a threat. Danielle leaves to wait for everyone to finish their business here, explaining that she’s survived on the island for sixteen years by avoiding the Others.

When Sayid approaches the building with his hands up, the man with the eye patch shoots him in the shoulder, shouting that Sayid has violated “the truce” by crossing a line, and that he was given permission to stay on this land. Sayid identifies himself, and the man seems to believe him, but when he exits the building, Kate and Locke run forward with their own guns drawn and order him to stand down. While Locke volunteers to go inside the building first to make sure it’s safe, the man tells Kate and Sayid that his name is Mikhail Bakunin, “the last living member of the Dharma Initiative.”

Mikhail helps Kate carry Sayid inside, and he dresses Sayid’s wound. He tells them his story: that he was born in Kiev, joined the Soviet army, but decommissioned after the Cold War. He signed up with the Dharma Initiative and came to the island eleven years ago, after replying to a newspaper advertisement that read, “Would you like to save the world?” He describes Dharma as “very secretive, very rich, and very smart.” He was assigned to this Dharma station, which is called the Flame. He tells Sayid that the purpose of the Flame was to allow Dharma to communicate with the outside world. Sayid asks what happened to the Dharma Initiative, and Mikhail reveals that they initiated a war against the Others — whom he calls “the Hostiles” — and were subsequently all killed in a single attack called “the Purge.” Mikhail says he survived the Purge by not participating in the war, and was offered a truce by the Others. They told him to imagine a line extending around the valley in which the Flame resides, and that as long as he didn’t cross it, he’d be left alone. Kate asks why they weren’t interested in the station’s satellite dish, but Mikhail says it hasn’t worked for years. Sayid asks who the Others really are, and Mikhail says he doesn’t know, but he knows that they were on the island a very long time before the Dharma Initiative was.

In a back room of the Flame, Locke comes across a computer similar to the one that was in the Swan. Mikhail had just been using it, playing a game of computer chess, and Locke finds himself unable to resist the challenge of a good game.

Mikhail leaves to get everyone something to drink, and comes across Locke, telling him that he’s wasting his time trying to defeat the chess game. Mikhail had been trying to beat it for ten years. While he heads to the kitchen, Sayid quietly says to Kate that his lie detection skills are telling him that Mikhail is lying — he’s not a member of the Dharma Initiative. He’s one of the Others, and Sayid is certain, because of things he’s noticed about the station, that Mikhail is not living here alone.

When Mikhail returns, Sayid tries pumping him for more information, asking about the cable he found running into the ocean. Mikhail explains that there are many such cables, having been placed by the Dharma Initiative, and they send power all over the island. One of them extends into the ocean because there’s a beacon down there that sends underwater pings to guide in the submarine that was used by Dharma to bring recruits to the island. Sayid talks about his being routed on the sailboat by the same sub, and then brags to Mikhail about killing one of the Others during the scuffle. Mikhail ends the charade and attacks the both of them, but they overpower him and tie him up.

Sayid explains that whoever else is here at the Flame, they were likely sent by the Others because the communications array has failed thanks to the electromagnetic pulse sent out when the Swan station was destroyed. Sayid uncovers a door to a sublevel in the floor under a rug, and he and Kate climb down inside. They’re surprised to discover that the entire station is wired with C4. Further investigation turns up a large set of Dharma handbooks — one of which is conspicuously labeled “Dharma Initiative Food Drop Protocol” — and becomes interested in the Dharma Operations Manual.

Locke abandons his watch over Mikhail to continue his chess game, though he can still see Mikhail’s bound, unconscious form from the computer. He’s thrilled when he wins the chess game, but then shocked when the game’s screen is replaced by the recorded face of the Dharma Initiative’s Dr. Marvin Candle, who says that “manual override” has been achieved. His message says, “For palette drop, Enter 24. For station uplink, enter 32. For mainland communication, enter 38.” Locke immediately tries the “mainland communication” option, but Candle’s recording pops up again and informs him that the satellite dish is broken and all communications are down. He offers another option: “sonar access,” using code 56. Locke enters this code and is given the same message, that sonar is inoperable. The recording says that if there’s been an incursion upon the Flame station by the Hostiles, Locke should enter 77. He’s about to do so when Mikhail appears behind him with a knife, having escaped from his bindings, and orders him to stop what he’s doing.

When Kate discovers a stash of Dharma jumpsuits in the Flame’s sublevel, she’s attacked by the person they suspected was hiding down there, and it turns out to be Bea Klugh (the woman who made the Others’ deal that allowed Ben to escape and Michael and Walt to escape the island), whom Kate remembers from the Pala Ferry. She overpowers Kate but Sayid comes to the rescue. Sayid tries to question her, but she refuses to speak. When they take her up top, they find Locke being held at gunpoint by Mikhail, and he suggests a trade: Bea for Locke. Locke tells Sayid not to release Bea, believing that if Mikhail was going to kill him he already would have, but Sayid argues. While everyone is shouting Bea and Mikhail have a conversation in Russian, arguing over something, until Bea tells him in English to “just do it!” He follows her instructions, shooting her on the spot. The survivors retake control of the facility, during which Locke goes back to the computer room. Outside, Sayid questions Mikhail again, asking if anything Mikhail told him about the Dharma Initiative was true. Mikhail says that he himself was never a member of Dharma, but everything else he said was true. The war between Dharma and the Others that ended with the Purge really happened, he insists. Danielle rejoins them, and Sayid tells her they now have a means of finding the Others’ home. Mikhail swears that nothing Sayid could do to him would make him lead them to his people, but Sayid counters that he wasn’t speaking of Mikhail. He whips out a page from the Dharma Operations Manual that he found, a map with familiar locations on it like the Flame. Another prominent location on the map is something called the Barracks, which is comprised of houses and dormitories, and has running water and electricity. Sayid knows this is where the Others must be. Mikhail promises to kill Sayid at his first opportunity, and Danielle suggests that there’s no reason to keep Mikhail alive, but Sayid refuses. When Locke and Kate return from a supply run inside the Flame, Locke tells Mikhail he knows why Mikhail didn’t want him to beat the chess game — because it would activate the manual override and give him the ability to destroy the station. Just as he says this, the Flame promptly explodes behind them. Sayid is angry that Locke destroyed their one chance to communicate with the outside world, but orders that they leave at once, because the explosion will have attracted the attention of the Others.

  • The Flame station, the hub of the Dharma Initiative’s communications with the outside world.
    Question: What station did the survivors in the Pearl catch a glimpse of in the video monitor? [3.05]
  • The man with the eye patch is Mikhail Bakunin, and he is one of the Others.
    Question: Who was the man with the patch over one eye? [3.05]
  • According to Mikhail, the submarine originally belonged to the Dharma Initiative, and was used to carry bring to the island.
    Question: Where did the Others get a submarine? [3.04]
  • The Others still use the Flame, a Dharma station that allows contact with the outside world.
    Question: Tom mentioned to Ben that “coms have been down since the sky turned purple.” What kind of communications technology do the Others possess? [3.04]
  • There is some kind of underwater “beacon” that’s connected to the Dharma power grid, but this beacon is not the source of the grid.
    Question: What is the underwater source of power that the cable is connected to? [1.09]
  • All of the Dharma stations receive electricity from the same power grid, which probably uses the island’s geothermal activity as its power source.
    Question: Is this underwater power source also providing electricity to Danielle’s radio S.O.S. call? [1.09]
  • Since we’ve never been given an explanation for this off-hand remark (and we probably never will at this point), I’m going to guess that it could have been a description of Hurley’s amazing ping-pong skills.
    Question: Why is Hurley “known as something of a warrior back home”? [1.11]

  • What happened during the Purge when the Others wiped out the Dharma Initiative?
  • Why did the Others wipe out the Dharma Initiative? Mikhail said it was because Dharma instigated a war with the Others, but was he telling the truth?


“Enter 77″ is the fourth Sayid-centric episode of the series.

This episode is important for laying the groundwork for many things about the Dharma Initiative’s relationship with the Others that we would see play out much later, most notably the Truce, the Purge, and the fact that Dharma coined the term “the Hostiles.”

I love it when we get episodes where Sayid is The Man — aka, the guy who no one can outfox or outmaneuver. He was two steps ahead of everyone in this episode, and those moments rocked.

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3.10 “Tricia Tanaka is Dead”

Hurley makes a discovery in the jungle that sparks a new plan to bring the survivors some hope. Sawyer and Kate finally make it back to the survivors at base camp.

Written by Edward Kitsis & Adam Horowitz
Directed by Eric Laneuville

Flashback

Hurley’s father, David Reyes, ran out on him and his mom when he was a boy. He claimed to be heading off to Vegas for some work, but Hurley never saw him again until he was an adult.

While attending the grand opening of his local Mr. Clucks Chicken Shack fast food restaurant — which Hurley was now the owner of, thanks to his lottery winnings — he was interviewed live by local TV personality Tricia Tanaka. When Hurley was less than engaging to Tanaka’s live audience, talking about his odd streak of bad luck, she chose to go inside the restaurant for a tour. And the entire place was promptly leveled by the impact of a meteor.

Right after the restaurant was destroyed, Hurley returned home in a dazed state and explained to his mother what happened. He hadn’t yet been to Australia to find out where the cursed Numbers came from, and expressed his desire to his mom to do just that. But Carmen had a surprise of her own for him: his father, David, had returned to them after seventeen years. But Hurley was having none of it, embittered by seventeen years of his father’s absence. Carmen revealed that David came not because Hurley won the lottery but because she asked him to, claiming that Hurley was obsessed with the notion of being cursed. But Hurley didn’t believe that his father’s interests extended beyond the money, and after his experience that day with Tricia Tanaka, he decided to get rid of the money and its curse for good. He demanded that David leave, but Carmen wouldn’t hear of it, suggesting instead that Hurley show his father that he still has the car that the two of them used to work on together when he was a boy.

The next day, David asked Hurley to do him one favor, and if it didn’t work, he could go to Australia as planned. Hurley was unimpressed to learn that his father’s big plan was to break the curse by visiting a psychic. The psychic, Lynn Karnoff, reads Tarot cards that tell her Hurley had recently won a huge sum of money that brought him nothing but misfortune. Then she got a vision of the Numbers, saying that darkness and great tragedy surround them. She pulled the Death card next and was sad to inform him that death surrounded him, and more would be coming. She saw that he was cursed, but said that she could remove it. When she retrieved a large cooking pot and began placing odd ingredients into it as a means of “exorcising the curse,” Hurley deduced that his father had put her up to this whole charade. He paid Lynn to admit that it was all a hoax.

s Hurley later began packing for his trip to Australia, his father came to him and admitted that the lottery money was a strong enticement for him to return. But reuniting with his family had brought out his concern for his son, and he truly wanted to help Hurley move past his issues with the supposed curse. He surprised Hurley by saying that he was right to want to give away the money, and make a fresh start — a fresh start they could share. Hurley was moved by the offer but insisted on taking his trip, so his father promised to be there waiting when he got back.

Hurley’s best friend, Johnny, ran off with Hurley’s girlfriend, Starla, following the flashback events depicted in the episode “Everybody Hates Hugo.”

Now

Hurley visits Libby’s grave and tells her about what’s happened to the group of late, thanks to the Others, confessing that he’s scared. He then visits Charlie and asks why he’s been moping so much lately, and Charlie explains about Desmond’s visions of Charlie’s impending death. Hurley immediately suspects that it’s his fault because he’s cursed. Vincent comes running out of the jungle just then, holding a severed and decayed human arm in his jaws. Around the arm hangs a set of car keys, and Hurley is excited by the sight. He chases Vincent into the jungle alone, where Vincent shows him a remarkable discovery: a very old, blue VW van. Inside the van is the source of the arm Vincent was carrying: a decayed corpse wearing a Dharma Initiative jumpsuit. The man’s jumpsuit labeled him as “Roger,” with the job of “Work Man.”

At camp, Sun decides to only speak to Jin in English so that he’ll learn the language faster.

Ecstatic about his find, Hurley returns to camp and recruits Charlie and Jin to help him fix it up. But Charlie declines the offer. Back at the van, Hurley and Jin discover a huge stash of Dharma beer in the back of the vehicle, and attempt to pull Roger the corpse out. But Roger’s head is ripped off in the process, falling back into the van.

Kate and Sawyer near camp, but Kate is still less than enthused about returning without Jack. Their return is stalled when Sawyer steps on a dart, and the two of them share a tender moment. Kate suggests they start over with a clean slate, but Sawyer blows her off with his usual tough-guy routine. They emerge onto the beach, and the survivors are thrilled to be reunited with their friends.

Charlie asks Desmond when he’s going to die, but Desmond says it doesn’t work that way. Sawyer approaches angrily, wanting to know what happened to his personal stash. He’s outraged to find out that the two of them drank the bottle of Scotch he had hid away, but they point out that there was someone else involved, too: Hurley.

Sawyer finds Hurley and Jin at the van, and demands to know where his stuff is, but Hurley is overjoyed to see that Sawyer’s alive and embraces him. After they trade stories, Sawyer still says he wants his stuff back, but Hurley says no. Instead, he says, Sawyer’s going to help them fix up the van, and uses the beer as leverage. Sawyer eagerly takes the bait, and inside the van he finds a Dharma map of roads they constructed on the island, as well as the beer stash. Hurley decides to try starting the van up, but his companions believe it will never work. It doesn’t. So Jin sets to work trying to fix the engine, but soon reports that it’s beyond repair. Hurley’s angry and frustrated when Sawyer tells him it’s a hopeless cause, because he believes everyone on the island could use some hope. Sawyer informs him there is no hope on this island.

Kate reports to Sayid and Locke about how Jack stayed behind, and she formulates a plan to rescue him. Locke is intrigued to learn that the Others have the means to leave the island whenever they want. Kate says that she’s going to recruit some help, and leaves to enter the jungle alone.

Hurley gets a new idea to make the van work, and returns to the beach to convince Charlie to come with him. He suggests that the two of them could really use a victory, and Charlie agrees. They go back to the van and the four men set to work pushing the van up to the edge of a nearby hill. Sawyer suggests that rushing the vehicle down such a steep hill will only get Hurley killed, but Hurley wants to use the momentum to jumpstart the car. Charlie gets in the van with him, so Sawyer and Jin give them the needed push to get them started. They barrel down the hill at a breakneck pace, and at the last second, Hurley pops the clutch and the van starts. He circles the car back around and Sawyer and Jin jump in, so the four men can take a joyride around the valley to celebrate their victory.

Later, Hurley’s friends return to camp, filled with hope and adrenaline. Jin embraces Sun, Charlie regales Claire with his victorious tale, but Sawyer can’t locate the object of his heart’s desire, and is forced to celebrate alone.

Out in the jungle, Kate discovers that Sayid and Locke have been following her. Locke says that he believes he knows where to find the place where the Others live, thanks to directions he received from Eko’s “Jesus stick.” Soon Kate finds the help she’s been looking for — in the form of Danielle Rousseau. She asks for Danielle’s help in finding the Others’ camp, revealing that the girl who helped her escape from the Others was Danielle’s daughter, Alex.

  • Locke believes that “John 3:05″ translates to a bearing of 305 that the survivors should follow on a compass, in order to find the Others’ home.
    Question: What was Locke thinking when he read John 3:05 on Eko’s stick? [3.06]

  • Who was Roger the corpse?
  • Why was the Dharma van left out in the jungle?
  • Where did the dart come from that Sawyer stepped on?
  • Did David Reyes keep his promise and stay in Los Angeles, waiting for Hurley to return from Australia?


“Tricia Tanaka is Dead” is the fourth Hurley-centric episode of the series.

“Tricia Tanaka is Dead” is the “feel-good movie” of Season 3, a real hidden gem. After all the heaviness of the last nine episodes, leave it to morale officer Hurley to find a way to cheer everyone up. A fun, lighthearted adventure was just what was needed.

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3.09 “Stranger in a Strange Land”

When Juliet faces dire consequences for her recent actions, Jack attempts to bargain for her life.

Written by Christina M. Kim & Elizabeth Sarnoff
Directed by Paris Barclay

Flashback

While vacationing for an extended period of time in Thailand, Jack had a torrid affair with a native woman named Achara. The two of them agreed from the outset not to discuss their personal lives, but Jack’s obsessive tendencies drove him to discover more about Achara. He learned that she worked at a unique tattoo parlor, where she put to work a very special gift: when she tattooed someone, she wasn’t decorating them with art. She could see who a person really was, and her tattoos were a way of defining someone’s true essence. It was forbidden for outsiders to receive her markings, but Jack insisted that she do it anyway. She told him that he was a leader and a great man, but that this left him lonely, frightened, and angry. As she predicted, there were consequences, which arrived in the form of Achara’s brother and his friends. They beat Jack cruelly for the transgression, and ordered him to leave their country.

Now

With their escape boat nearing the shoreline of the main island, Kate demands that they turn around, because she wants to go back for Jack. But Sawyer will have none of it, and stays on course. When they make landfall, they’re far from the survivors’ camp and uncertain of how to get back there, so they build a campfire for the night. Sawyer makes conversation with Karl, who explains that Hydra island is not the Others’ home — “it’s where we work.” Their home is here on the main island, where they live in actual houses. Kate asks what the Others do with the kids and adults they abducted from the survivors’ ranks, and Karl says that they “give them a better life.”

Tom moves Jack from his underwater cell to a new home: the cage formerly occupied by Sawyer. But on his way there, he passes by Juliet, who’s placed in his old cell, under the orders of a woman Jack has never seen before. Jack later asks Tom who the woman was, and Tom refers to her as “the sheriff,” who’s come to attend to the matter of Juliet murdering one of her own people, Danny Puckett.

That night, Juliet visits Jack and explains that she was let out to check on Ben’s post-op recovery. She shows Jack pictures of Ben’s stitches, which have become infected, and asks him to take care of Ben as a personal favor, because she’s in trouble. But Jack, tired of being treated as a prisoner, refuses to help. So the woman he saw earlier eventually visits him, and identifies herself as Isabel. She takes him from his cell to an office where Juliet is being held, and Tom is also waiting. Isabel explains that she’s investigating Juliet’s recent behavior, and says that Tom has told her that Juliet asked Jack to help her kill Ben. Isabel asks Jack if this is true, but lies and says it isn’t true. Isabel indicates that she knows Jack’s lying.

The next morning, Jack awakens to find several Others milling about outside his cell, and he’s agitated by their presence. One of them steps forward and identifies herself as Cindy, the flight attendant from Oceanic 815. She looks happy and healthy, and says she’s happy to see Jack, but Jack is irate that she’s become part of the Others’ society so easily. She says it’s complicated, so he asks what all of them are doing here now, and Cindy says they’re there to watch. Emma and Zack, the siblings from the tail section that lost her mother, are also there, apparently under Cindy’s care. But Jack is outraged, instead telling everyone to “go watch” whatever it is they’re here to watch, and leave him alone. Everyone leaves, and walks into the Hydra station.

Sawyer and Kate wake up at their camp and notice that Karl’s gone, but they find him nearby in the jungle, crying alone. Sawyer gives him a pep talk, encouraging the boy to go back for the woman he loves. He then returns to Kate, informing her that he let Karl go. She’s angry, but the root of her anger stems from her guilt at leaving Jack behind and at sleeping with Sawyer, as he rightly points out. He says he knows she only slept with him because she believed he was going to die, and she can’t argue the point. So they awkwardly set off to return to the survivors’ camp.

Alex destroys the video camera monitoring Jack, and then goes to his cell to ask why he operated on Ben, pointing out that after all Jack and his friends have been through, he should hate Ben. Jack says he’ll answer her question if she’ll answer his: where’s Juliet? Alex says that Juliet’s fate is about to be decided, and that her people are very strict when it comes to killing one of their own. She reveals the identity of the man Juliet killed, and Jack immediately feels responsible — Juliet did it because of him and his friends. He answers Alex’s question by saying simply, “I saved your father because I said that I would.” Getting an idea, he asks if Ben is still in charge or if Isabel has assumed power; Alex says that Ben is still in charge, so Jack asks her to release him from his cage.

Alex takes Jack to see Ben, where he inspects Ben’s infected incision. Jack explains that Ben needs a doctor to take care of him, to nurse him back to full health. And in exchange, Jack wants Juliet’s life spared. Ben says that Juliet doesn’t care about Jack, no matter what she’s expressed to him in the past, and that Jack shouldn’t trust her. But Jack doesn’t care. Ben agrees, and writes down an order that he sends with Alex to Isabel: he commuted Juliet’s sentence, but ordered that she be marked.

Later, Juliet visits Jack as a free woman, delivering his lunch. He asks to see Juliet’s mark; it’s a strange, star-like shape with 8 lines (it’s never been seen before or since on the show). He has her break off a branch from a nearby aloe plant, and he applies it to her brand. Juliet asks why he helped her, and Jack says that he needs her help making sure that Ben keeps his word in letting both of them leave the island. Juliet informs him that in a few minutes he’s going to be taken from his cell along with the Others, who are headed back to their home on the main island.

As Jack is taken along with the Others to the beach, where they prepare to enter boats to return to the main island, Isabel finds him and tells him that his tattoos say, in Chinese, “He walks amongst us, but he is not one of us.” He points out that that’s what they say, but it’s not what they mean. Jack boards the boat Ben is on and watches over him as they sail into the night.

  • Walt was apparently on Jacob’s mysterious “list,” which denoted him as a good person, and that’s why the Others took him. Karl’s comments in this episode suggest that they wanted nothing more than to give him “a better life” on the island, but Walt’s dangerous abilities eventually made them question his place among them.
    Question: Why did the Others take Walt? What do they want with him? [1.25]
  • It appears that everyone who’s abducted by the Others is made one of them. Abductees become members of the Others’ society and live among them, sparing them the harsher lifestyle of the marooned crash survivors.
    Question: Where did the Others take everyone they abducted? [2.07]
  • Putting 2 and 2 together… the implication based on the data we have so far is that these “lists” come straight from the enigmatic Jacob, and they are basically lists of people deemed to be “good.” Children are no doubt always deemed good because they are inherently innocent, largely untainted by the deceptive ways of adults.
    Question: Why did the Others abduct so many of the tailies, and especially the children? [2.07]

  • What kind of “work projects” do the Others do on Hydra island?
  • What does the symbol branded onto Juliet mean?


“Stranger in a Strange Land” is the seventh Jack-centric episode of the series.

This episode bears the dubious honor of being probably the most-disliked episode of the series. (It’s not my least favorite; that episode’s yet to come in the Rewatch.) Fans deplore it as the utterly needless “how Jack got his tattoos episode,” and even Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse have talked publicly about how they consider it the lowest point of the series. After the spectacular last two episodes, the show frankly took the week off to spin its heels with this one, because the production team still had no idea how much more of the show they would be required to produce. Because of this, this ep more than any other served as the catalyst for Team Darlton to sit down with the powers that be at ABC and identify an exact end date for the series, to prevent more episodes like this one from happening. So in one way, something very positive came of it. But there’s not a lot in it that benefits from repeat viewings.

Though it’s mostly a snoozer of an episode, it does have a few grace notes. I particularly enjoyed watching the odd friendship blooming between Jack and Tom, the proverbial honeymoon being over between Kate and Sawyer, Sawyer’s advice to lovelorn Karl, and the memorable moment between Jack and Cindy the flight attendant.

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