Tagged: the incident

5.17 “The Incident, Part 2”

Locke and Ben finally meet face-to-face with Jacob, while Jack receives unexpected help in his attempt to change history.

Written by Carlton Cuse & Damon Lindelof
Directed by Jack Bender

Near nightfall, the Others arrive at the statue, which is nothing more than a single foot here in the present. Locke asks what this statue has to do with Jacob, and Richard says it’s where Jacob lives.

That night, Richard sets up a camp for his people and then asks Locke if he’s sure he needs to do this, because if he waits, Jacob would eventually come to him. Locke says he’s tired of waiting, and wants to go see him now. Nearby, Sun asks Ben what happened to the rest of the statue. Ben says he doesn’t know, that it was that way when he got here. Locke tells Ben to come along as they head for the statue, but Richard protests. Only the leader of the Others can request an audience with Jacob, “and there can only be one leader on the island at a time.” “I’m beginning to think you just make these rules up as you go along, Richard,” Locke replies. He insists that Ben come along, so Richard opens the door in the side of the statue’s base, but then leaves them to it. As they enter, Locke asks Ben if he’ll be able to do this. “I know it won’t be easy, but things will change once he’s gone,” Locke assures him. Ben accepts a knife from Locke.

Outside the statue, Ilana and her group arrive and the Others draw their weapons. Ilana tells them not to shoot, that they’re friends, and they’ve come to help. She asks which one of them is “Ricardos,” and Richard steps forward. “What lies in the shadow of the statue?” she asks him pointedly. In Latin, he replies, “He who will save us all.” Ilana is visibly relieved that someone finally answered the question correctly, and shows him what’s inside the steel crate: it’s John Locke’s body! He’s still dead! Ilana says the body was in a coffin in the cargo hold of Ajira 316. Sun asks the question on everyone’s minds: “If this is Locke, who’s in [the statue]?”

Inside, Locke and Ben come upon the large room with the fire pit where we first saw Jacob at the beginning of the episode. Ben notices the large tapestry hanging on the wall and goes to examine it. Jacob, watching from the shadows, asks if Ben likes it. “It takes a very long time when you’re making the thread. But I suppose that’s the point, isn’t it?” he says. Locke bids him hello, and Jacob recognizes him at once for who he is: “You found your loophole.” It’s the 2nd Man from the beginning of the episode! Only now he looks like John Locke. “You have no idea what I’ve gone through to be here,” says Locke. Ben is stunned to see that the two of them know each other. Locke asks Ben to do what he asked him to do. Jacob steps forward and says he wants Ben to understand one thing. Despite whatever Locke has told him, Ben still has a choice. Ben is angered that Jacob ignored him for thirty-five years but no longer. Ben recounts his history, reminding Jacob that everything he was asked to do in Jacob’s name, he did, without question. He asked to see Jacob once but was told by Richard to wait. But when Locke asked to see Jacob, he was brought straight here. “Why him?” Ben asks. “What was it that was so wrong with me? What about me?!” Jacob looks at him sadly and replies, “What about you?”

Outraged, Ben stabs Jacob twice in the chest. Jacob collapses and starts spitting up blood, mumbling about someone coming. Locke kneels quickly and asks what Jacob is talking about. “They’re coming,” Jacob repeats, and Locke stands to his feet and kicks Jacob into the fire pit. Jacob immediately catches fire and a stunned Ben and an angry Locke watch him burn.

In 1977, Jack gets out of the van and Sawyer asks for five minutes of his time to talk. The two of them walk into the jungle to find a private spot.

Sawyer tries a friendly approach first, telling Jack about how his parents died when he was eight years old. Then he points out that that happened a year ago, in 1976, and if he wanted to, he could have gotten on the sub and gone to the mainland and changed things. “But what’s done is done,” he concludes. Jack argues the point, but Sawyer cuts through his scientific logic, pressing him for the personal and emotional reason Jack is doing this. He believes Jack screwed up something so bad, he’s willing to detonate a nuke to get a second chance, but Jack says that’s not what this is about. “I had her, and I lost her,” Jack says, referring to Kate. Sawyer suggests that if Jack wants her back, he just has to go ask her. Jack says it’s too late, but Sawyer says that if Jack succeeds, Jack and Kate will be strangers and Kate “will be in handcuffs.” Resigned, Jack believes it’s meant to be. Sawyer realizes that he can’t talk Jack out of it, so he resorts to fisticuffs instead, and the long-brewing tension between these two finally comes to blows. Sawyer gets the best of him after a prolonged fight, but Juliet finds them and tells him to let Jack go. Juliet says Jack is right, and they have to do this. Outraged, Sawyer points out that she’s the one that told him to come back to the island and stop Jack. “What happened?!” “I changed my mind,” she replies.

Sawyer follows Juliet through the jungle, trying to get an explanation out of her, but she’s resigned to letting Jack do what he intends to do. “I changed my mind when I saw you look at her,” Juliet finally explains. “I don’t care who I looked at,” Sawyer replies. “I’m with you.” “And you would stay with me forever if I would let you, and that is why I will always love you. Just because we love each other doesn’t mean we’re supposed to be together,” says Juliet, repeating the words her mother told her as a child. Sawyer doesn’t buy it, and pushes her to tell why she’s really doing this. “If I never meet you, then I never have to lose you,” she says sadly.

At the Swan site, Chang tries again to get Radzinsky to stop the drilling, noting that the drill’s readings have suddenly gone off the charts. Radzinsky gets a call from Phil back at the Barracks, telling him about Jack and Sayid and the shootout. Radzinsky realizes the two of them are on their way to the Swan site, and he orders Phil to get out there on the double.

Jack watches this exchange from a safe distance, through the jungle foliage. Kate catches up with him, and the two have a heart-to-heart. She reminisces about the day she sewed him up when they first came to the island. He asks why she made him promise to never ask about Aaron. She says she was angry at him for making her come back, but she came back so Aaron could be with his mother, where he belongs. Jack points out that if his plan works, Claire will never come to the island, and Aaron will be born in L.A. Kate argues that Claire intended to give Aaron up for adoption, but Jack says they can’t know what she’ll decide once she gives birth and sees him for the first time. “Nothing in my life has ever felt so right” as this plan, he tells her, pleading with her for her help and support. An alarm sounds at the Swan site, and steam pours out of the drilling hole. Jack says the Incident is about to happen, and asks if Kate is with him or not. She affirms that she is.

Jack and Kate return to the others, where Hurley’s trying to reassure Sayid that he’ll be fine once Jack changes history. Sayid has prepped the bomb to explode on impact, and tells Jack to get the bomb as close as possible to the source of the electromagnetism. “This is going to work,” Jack assures Sayid, “and it’ll save you.” “Nothing can save me,” Sayid replies. Jack takes the bomb and leaves. He passes Juliet and Sawyer coming back to meet the others. “See you in Los Angeles,” he says to Sawyer.

While the rest of the group waits back at the Dharma van, Miles brings up a very important notion: “Has it occurred to any of you that your buddy is actually going to cause the thing he says he’s trying to prevent? Perhaps that little nuke is the incident. So maybe the best thing to do is nothing.” When no one answers, he adds, “I’m glad you all thought this through.” They spot Phil and some other security men driving to the Swan site, and they decide to go help.

At the Swan site, Phil and his men set up a perimeter. Chang protests again, but his words fall on deaf ears. Meanwhile, Jack sneaks up on the drill area, gun in hand. But before he can get inside, Phil spots him, and a huge gunfight ensues. Jack’s friends ride in to the rescue in their stolen Dharma van, and now everyone is shooting. Many of the Dharma men are killed in the fight, but remarkably, none of the survivors are hit.

Sawyer gets the drop on Phil and has him order the other men to drop their guns. The shooting stopped, Sawyer tells Jack to come on out and do his thing. Chang tries to turn off the drill, but it won’t disengage because the electromagnetic pocket has been hit, and it’s pulling the drill downward. Jack gets out the bomb and prepares to drop it down the tunnel. He turns to Kate, and she nods approvingly with tears in her eyes. Sawyer and Juliet likewise make eye contact, and this time Juliet smiles that he’s looked at her instead of Kate. Jack drops the bomb and everyone closes their eyes, waiting for the blast. But it never comes.

Instead, the electromagnet goes into overdrive, and equipment from all over the site starts being pulled into the hole. Dr. Chang is pinned down by the drill, but Miles saves him, telling his father to get as far away from here as possible. Even Radzinsky runs. Phil almost shoots Sawyer, but a scaffolding falls on him first and a long piece of rebar impales him. A length of chain entwines around Juliet, and she’s dragged toward the hole. Kate manages to catch her at the last second, but the pull is too strong and she can’t hold on. Sawyer runs to help and grabs her by the hand. They share a very emotional moment as Kate tries to get the chains off of Juliet, but she can’t reach and the pull increases, the drill collapsing around them. “Don’t you leave me!” Sawyer shouts. “It’s okay,” says Juliet, smiling. “I love you, James! I love you so much.” To save their lives, Juliet pulls free and falls. Sawyer is utterly destroyed, collapsing into tears.

Moments later, Kate tries to pull Sawyer back from the hole before the drill collapses on top of him, but she can’t budge him. Jack helps and they manage to pull him away. The magnetic effects grow worse until the entire drill is dragged into the hole. Down at the bottom, Juliet’s broken body lays trapped, blood pouring out of her mouth and numerous injuries. But she opens her eyes and coughs — she’s alive! Nearby, she spots the nuclear bomb, which still hasn’t gone off. She grabs a rock and bitterly smashes it against the bomb, until finally, it explodes.

And everything goes white.

  • According to Sawyer, this episode takes place in July, 1977.
    Question: When, prior to 1980, did “the incident” occur?
    [2.03]
  • Chang’s hand was crushed by a large piece of metal during the powerful electromagnetic catastrophe known as the Incident.
    Question: Marvin Candle appeared to be wearing a prosthetic arm. Why? What happened to his real arm?
    [2.03]
  • From what we can glean about Jacob in this episode, the island seems to be his domain, or at least the shared domain of him and the Man in Black. So since the Others work for Jacob, then in a sense, yes the island is theirs, though the word “belong” implies an ownership that they can’t really claim.
    Question: Does the island belong to the Others, as they claim?
    [2.11]
  • Again, since the Others work for Jacob, then they no doubt see their actions as justifiable for the greater good. It doesn’t appear that Jacob gives specific instructions on how his orders are to be carried out — such as bringing new people into the Others’ ranks. It’s the Others themselves who decide to violently kidnap the people on Jacob’s lists.
    Question: Ethan told Claire that the Others “are good people,” a “good family.” Yet we’ve seen them commit acts of unspeakable cruelty. How can they be good if they do such bad things?
    [2.15]
  • Though a definitive answer is yet to come, it seems pretty conclusive at this point that most or all of the dead people seen on the island are probably the smoke monster in human form, including Yemi.
    Question: Who was the Yemi that Eko confessed to? Was he, as it appeared, the smoke monster taken human form?
    [3.05]
  • Emily Linus was no doubt another example of the smoke monster taking on human form.
    Question: Who or what was the Emily Linus we saw on the island, when she is known to be dead? Is she in the same state as Christian Shepherd, and other dead people who have been seen on the island?
    [3.20]
  • This was most likely the Man in Black.
    Question: Who was the second person Hurley saw in Jacob’s cabin (the one that appeared at the window)?
    [4.01]
  • Jacob gave him a little nudge.
    Question: Why did Hurley change his mind and decide to go back to the island?
    [5.06]
  • He didn’t — it was the Man in Black the whole time.
    Question: How did Locke wind up standing in the ocean just off the shore of Hydra Island, apparently resurrected after killing himself in Los Angeles?
    [5.07]
  • Locke was never resurrected! Ben was right — dead is dead. Instead, the person everyone thought was Locke was really Jacob’s Nemesis in disguise.
    Question: How exactly was Locke resurrected?
    [5.07]
  • Locke’s body — the real Locke.
    Question: What’s in Ilana’s steel crate?
    [5.12]
  • “He who will save us all,” which is undoubtedly a reference to Jacob.
    Question: What’s the answer to the question, “What lies in the shadow of the statue?”
    [5.12]
  • Knowing the answer to the question appears to be an identifier for the personal servants of Jacob.
    Question: Why did Ilana ask this question to Frank? Is it some kind of pass code?
    [5.12]
  • He doesn’t — Jacob’s Nemesis does.
    Question: Why does Locke want to kill Jacob?
    [5.15]

  • How did the Man in Black take on Locke’s form? Can he assume the form of anyone he wants, or does it have to be a dead person?
  • What all did the Man in Black “go through” to get to Jacob?
  • Since we’ve seen other dead people (like Locke) on the island before, such as Alex Rousseau and Yemi, who very likely were the smoke monster taken human form, does this mean that the Man in Black is the smoke monster? Could they be one and the same?
  • Who was Jacob referring to when he warned the Man in Black that “they’re coming”?
  • Were Jack, Juliet, and the other survivors successful in altering history by detonating the hydrogen bomb?

I don’t quite understand Jack’s personal motivations for wanting to detonate the bomb, if for him, it was all about being with Kate. I could see his desire to wipe away the mistakes he’d made, such as his drug addiction and how he pushed Kate away. But he has to know that it’s unlikely that they’ll ever meet if history is changed. Maybe with his newfound belief in fate, he now believes that if he and Kate are meant to be together, they still will be, in the new timeline.

How awesome is it that Jacob lives under the statue? That’s just plain cool.

I was really hoping Sun and Jin’s long-awaited reunion might take place by the end of this episode, but it looks like we’re going to have to wait until next season for that.

Another mystery that will have to wait is finding out what’s inside Hurley’s guitar case. I’m guessing it’s something that’s going to come in pretty handy for Jacob’s people.

According to Jacob, Hurley isn’t crazy and isn’t just hallucinating visions of dead people. He really is seeing them. How did Hurley get this “blessing”? Did Jacob give it to him?

Do you suppose there’s any significance to Ilana calling Richard “Ricardos”?

We got an answer to “What lies in the shadow of the statue?” Richard’s reply was in Latin (naturally), translated as “He who will save us all.” A certain reference to Jacob.

I have to admit, I’m a bit bummed that John Locke is really dead, and now this new Locke we have appears to be evil. This is his long-awaited grand destiny? Not to be leader of the Others, but their greatest enemy? It’s a twist to be sure, and that’s what this show delivers consistently better than any other. But poor Locke deserved better. And if he always was destined to become evil (after a fashion), why did Jacob save him after his fall? Of course, there’s always the off-chance that the new Locke might not be evil at all, but the evidence is stacked against him. He’s been lying to everyone, has no interest in saving the 1977 castaways, plotted to kill Jacob, and next plans to take out the Ajira 316 survivors — likely because he knows that Ilana & Co. are agents of Jacob. These are not the actions of a good person. And yet, this 2nd Man-in-Locke’s-form possesses Locke’s memories and personality, in addition to his own. So is Locke in there somewhere, downloaded into this other being? Could he fight his way to the surface and take control?

I’m really curious about all of these past events that Jacob appeared at, physically touching the castaways at pivotal moments in their lives. The takeaway we’re supposed to get out of this is that all of the connections and ties that these characters have to each other from their pasts is not coincidence at all — Jacob himself has been involved in directing them towards their destinies on the island. Okay, so they were all meant to end up on the island. I can swallow that. What I’m having trouble with is that Jacob didn’t really do much for some of them. Sure, he saved Locke after his fall, influenced Hurley’s decision to go back to the island, and prevented Sayid from dying alongside Nadia. He gave Kate a little nudge toward being a good girl (which didn’t completely take), and offered Sawyer a pen to write his fateful “Dear Mister Sawyer” letter. But all he did for Jack was give him a candy bar. He attended Jin and Sun’s wedding. Big whoop. Is it enough that he was merely present at these important moments in our characters’ lives?

Who was Jacob referring to, when he told not-Locke that “they’re coming”? Ilana and Richard? Or could it have been Jack & Co., returning from the past?

What we learned about Jacob:

  • he can come and go from the island as he pleases
  • he appears to have the power to heal
  • he does not age
  • he is, despite all his incredible power, a mortal being, capable of bleeding and (possibly) dying
  • he has some prescient knowledge of things to come

What was the deal with Jacob’s tapestry? It’s a clear metaphor for all of the puzzle pieces he seems to have put in place: i.e., the survivors from Oceanic 815. The fact that it took him a long time to do it also points to this, since we know Jacob has been directing things on the island for a long time. But is it more than just a representation of things on the island? Is he channeling his powers through the tapestry, catalyzing certain events through the process of weaving? Perhaps it’s no coincidence that we saw Jacob working on his tapestry right before the Black Rock arrived. Did his weaving somehow cause the Black Rock to go off course and come to the island?

Richard Alpert told Sun in “Follow the Leader” that he “watched them all die,” referring to the survivors in 1977. Yet we didn’t see him anywhere around during their climactic showdown at the Swan. Which can only mean this hasn’t happened yet — and it’s something we’ll see in Season 6. Assuming, of course, that the detonation of the hydrogen bomb didn’t change history. (And I don’t accept that it did.)

Everything about Locke’s initial encounter with Jacob in “The Man Behind the Curtain” is now put in a whole new light, and much or all of what we learned or assumed from that episode could very possibly be untrue. I’m most interested now in the voice that said “Help me” to Locke. Was this really Jacob’s voice? Or was it the 2nd Man?

The fan-chosen code name for the big twist, “The Fork In the Outlet,” turned out to be surprisingly appropriate. And I loved that the final fade in of “LOST” after the last scene was washed in white, instead of the customary black. Clever.

The twenty-million dollar question: Who are Jacob and the 2nd Man? There are certainly parallels between the biblical notions of God and Satan between them. Or maybe yin and yang. Much like God and Lucifer held a “cosmic wager” over the fate of Job, Jacob and the 2nd Man’s early conversation hinted that these two had a similar arrangement: bring people to the island, see if they’re capable of something more than fighting with each other. Even Jacob’s “What about you?” reply to Ben was reminiscent of God’s answer to Job’s questioning why so much trouble had come upon him. The 2nd Man saw no end to the cycle of violence, while Jacob believed that one day a group might come to the island and choose a better way than violence. In this scenario, the island would be presented to each new group of visitors as mankind’s ultimate prize. Which fits with what we know: various warring factions have fought over possession of the island, very likely throughout its entire history. They wanted to control the island and all of its miraculous powers, and to get it, they’d eventually turn on each other.

Jacob hammered home to Ben in that final scene that he had a choice. He could choose to kill Jacob, or he could choose not to. Is this the ultimate message behind Lost? That we all have a choice, and our choices define us? Could it be that this is the nature of the wager between Jacob and the 2nd Man? It’s an experiment of sorts, to see if man is capable of rising above his sinful nature?

Here’s a thought that’ll make your head spin: What if Jacob and the 2nd Man, together, constructed the island?

It seems apparent now that the war we’ve been told about for a while now that’s coming for control of the island is going to be waged between Jacob and his followers, and the 2nd Man and whoever he can persuade to join his side. Whatever limitations once stood between them engaging in open conflict have now been erased, since the 2nd Man found a way to take on Locke’s form. If Jacob is dead — and I’m not convinced he is — could he take on a new form as well? A new avatar or representative, if you will? Who might that be? Someone well suited to go to war against the former John Locke? Someone… like Jack Shephard? Or Benjamin Linus? Hmm.

Jacob seemed unsurprised that Locke and Ben showed up at his door. He was expecting them, methinks. I wonder if he might have even been indirectly manipulating the entire situation. Did he know that Ben would kill him on this day? Could he still be directing events, even after his death?

For a while there, I was convinced that the 2nd Man was going to turn out to be Christian Shephard. The actor playing him had a bit of a resemblance to Jack’s pop. But that seems less likely in retrospect. Though there is a new question that needs to be posed about back-from-the-dead Christian: is he, like Locke, a manifestation of the 2nd Man? Dead is dead, after all, and undead Christian hasn’t been seen in quite a while. He claimed to speak for Jacob, but what if he was lying, and he really works for (or is) the 2nd Man? What has Christian done that can truly be labeled good, after all? He sent Locke to his death, when he told him to turn the wheel and leave the island. He took Claire away from her friends, and she hasn’t been seen since. He told Michael when it was okay for him to die, which admittedly does seem more like he was speaking for the island itself. But his ray of hope to Sun about reuniting with Jin could have been nothing more than the 2nd Man manipulating her to serve undead Locke’s endgame of killing Jacob. What do you think? Christian Shephard: good or evil?

“The Incident” provided us with perhaps the most important intel we’ve received yet on the smoke monster, even though Smokey didn’t put in an appearance. See if you can follow my logic on this: We’ve never seen the monster do anything that can be considered “good.” In fact, you could call it downright “evil.” It judges, brutally attacks, and kills people at will. Ben was told by the monster in human form (Alex) to do everything that Locke told him to. But we know now that the Locke Alex was referring to was really the 2nd Man in Locke’s form. If the monster knew the truth about Locke when Alex told Ben this (and I’m willing to bet it did), then that means the monster is in league with the 2nd Man. Making it possibly even an agent or tool of the 2nd Man. Did the 2nd Man create the monster? The 2nd Man seems to be “the bad guy,” which means that the monster is evil, too.

So here’s my theory: the dead people we’ve seen on the island are really the smoke monster/Man in Black assuming their form: Alex, Yemi, Emily Linus, etc. I still do wonder, though, about Christian Shephard. Sure, it’s possible that he’s another guise of the smoke monster/Man in Black, but there almost seems to be more to him, somehow. I wonder if he could be Richard’s opposite number, serving the Man in Black the same way that Richard serves Jacob. There’s a certain symmetry to it — Richard was made a symbol of life by Jacob when Jacob made it so that Richard doesn’t age, whereas the Man in Black used a symbol of death as his servant.

Is Juliet really dead? She seemed to have survived her long fall remarkably well. How exactly did that happen? I’m sure she has lots of serious injuries, but if the survivors are transported back to 2007, she would surely go with them since she didn’t die yet. And as for those injuries, the island is known for its healing powers… But I’ll freely admit I could be reaching, just ’cause I don’t want her to die. On the other hand, Juliet is the one person we witnessed in flashback tonight that Jacob never went to visit off the island. Significant? Is she not as important as the rest of them?

And what about Sayid? We didn’t see him die, so we have to assume he’s still alive and kicking, at least for the time being. His quest for redemption is probably still yet to come.

What will become of Pierre Chang? Will we ever see him again? Will he and Miles get some closure on their father/son relationship?

In the end, we’re left with this: What happens in the final season if Juliet succeeded in changing history? Would the survivors return to their former lives, but still somehow be drawn to the island, and spend some of Season 6 trying to get there? Might they somehow remember all of the events that they managed to erase, and reunite with one another due to that? And consider some of the people who died that would be alive once more: Boone, Shannon, Ana-Lucia, Libby, Eko, Charlie, Charlotte, Daniel, Juliet, and get this — Jacob!

So it all comes down to whether or not that bomb reset the timeline. My initial instinct upon seeing the episode was that there’s no way it could have. There’s just too much evidence to the contrary, such as Richard remembering that all of the survivors died (presumably from the bomb blast) in 1977. If the bomb blast changed history, he wouldn’t remember their deaths in the original timeline version of 2007. Or consider Chang’s hand/arm injury, which we’ve known to be part of continuity all the way back to the earliest Dharma orientation videos of Season 2. This episode finally showed us how his hand was injured, so wouldn’t that point to an unchanged timeline? Yet we know from all of the hints we’ve seen since way back at Comic-Con ‘09 that alterations to the timeline are something the show is going to play with heavily in Season 6. Is it possible that somehow the bomb both did and didn’t change history? We’ll find out soon.

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5.16 “The Incident, Part 1”

Jacob is revealed as Locke tries to manipulate Ben, while Sawyer, Kate, and Juliet try to stop Jack from detonating the bomb.

Written by Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse
Directed by Jack Bender


Sometime in the mid-1800s, a man on the island who we’ve never seen before works inside a large room that has a fire pit in the center. The room has a decidedly “ancient Egyptian” look to it. He works carefully at a loom, slowly weaving together a tapestry by hand. Later, he’s outdoors on the beach, and he retrieves a fish trap with a fresh catch inside. He cooks the fish over a fire and begins eating it when he sees a black ship with tall white sails not far out at sea that has to be the legendary Black Rock, just before it ran ashore on the island. Another man we’ve never seen before walks up to Jacob’s spot on the beach and asks if he can join him. (Note: since we’re never given his name, for simplicity’s sake, I’ll be referring to this individual as “the 2nd Man.”) The two exchange a few pleasantries, before the first man asks if his friend came here because of the approaching ship. The 2nd Man asks how the ship found the island. When the first man is coy in responding, the 2nd Man admits he already knows how the Black Rock found the island: the two of them brought it here. “Still trying to prove me wrong, aren’t you?” he says. “They come, they fight, they destroy, they corrupt. It always ends the same.” The first man replies, “It only ends once. Anything that happens before that is just progress.” The two make eye contact, and it’s not a friendly gaze. “Do you have any idea how badly I want to kill you?” asks the 2nd Man. “Yes,” replies the first man. “One of these days, sooner or later, we’re going to find a loophole, my friend,” says the 2nd Man. “When you do, I’ll be right here,” the first man shoots back. Before leaving, the 2nd Man refers to his counterpart by name: Jacob. The camera pans up, and we see that Jacob’s beachside breakfast venue is right beneath the four-toed statue, which at this time is still fully intact. A side view of it reveals more of its facial features, which resembles an animal with a long head like a crocodile or hippo.

In the late 1980s or early 90s, a young Kate Austen and her childhood friend Tom Brennan are caught stealing a New Kids on the Block lunchbox from a small store. When the proprietor threatens to call the cops on “Katie,” a stranger approaches and says he’ll pay for the lunchbox. It’s Jacob, looking not a day older than when we just saw him over one hundred years ago, on the island. When the store owner is satisfied, Jacob turns to Kate and smiles. “You’re not going to steal anymore, are you?” She shakes her head no, and returns his smile, genuinely. “Be good, Katie,” he says, and leaves.

Next we see Jacob visit Sawyer in his childhood, who’s attending the funeral of his mother and father. The embittered boy takes a moment alone after the ceremony to begin writing his “Dear Mr. Sawyer” letter to the man he blames for his parents’ death. But when his pen runs dry, Jacob walks up and gives him a fresh one to use. “I’m very sorry about your mother and father, James.” After Jacob leaves, another man approaches, a friend or family member of Sawyer’s. He discovers the letter Sawyer is writing and makes him promise not to finish it.

More recently, Jacob travels to L.A., where Sayid and Nadia are walking down the sidewalk and talking about plans for their first anniversary. Nadia crosses the street but Sayid is stopped by Jacob, who claims to be lost and asks for his help. Nadia is suddenly struck by an oncoming SUV, which speeds away. Dying on the street and knowing it, Nadia asks Sayid to “take me home.”

In a foreign hospital somewhere, Jacob pays a visit to Ilana, whose head and one of her eyes is wrapped in a large bandage. She’s severely hurt, but unlike the others Jacob has visited, Ilana recognizes him. He says he’s sorry for not getting here sooner, and says he’s come to ask for her help. She seems to know him well, and gladly agrees to help him.

In another time and place, Jacob sits on a bench outside a highrise building and reads a book while waiting for John Locke to be pushed out of a window by his father, and fall many stories to the ground. When Locke does just that, Jacob calmly walks to him and touches his shoulder. Locke immediately wakes up. “Don’t worry, everything’s going to be alright,” says Jacob. “I’m sorry this happened to you.” Then he leaves.

At Sun and Jin’s wedding, Jacob turns up and pays his respects to the happy couple. He offers them his blessing, and says that their love is “a very special thing.” He tells them to never take it for granted, and then leaves. Neither of them know who he is, but Jin is impressed at how well Jacob speaks Korean.

Next, we’re treated to a look back at the very moment in the operating room that Jack told Kate about the first day they met, when Jack conquered his fears by “letting the fear in” for just five seconds. Christian, Jack’s father, is observing in the operating room when Jack makes his accidental incision, and when Jack begins to panic, it’s Christian who tells him to count to five. Jack does as he’s told. After the surgery, Jack tries to buy a candy bar out of a vending machine, but the candy gets stuck. Christian finds him and mentions that the patient is in recovery and showing no signs of permanent damage. Angrily, Jack chastises his father for putting him “in a time out” during his first major procedure, in front of the other doctors and nurses. “I know you don’t believe in me, but I need them to,” Jack says. “Are you sure I’m the one who doesn’t believe in you, Jack?” Christian shoots back. As Christian walks away, Jacob pulls two candy bars from the vending machine and asks if one of them belonged to Jack. Jack accepts the candy bar, mumbling that the machine got stuck. “I guess it just needed a little push,” Jacob replies.

Another flashback finds young Juliet and her sister Rachel being told by their parents that they’re getting a divorce, though they still love each other. “Just because two people love each other doesn’t mean they’re supposed to be together,” her mom says. Juliet doesn’t want to hear it, and runs out upset.

More recently in L.A., Hurley is released from jail after Ben arranges for his discharge. He hails a cab but finds someone already inside: Jacob. Jacob says he’s only going a few blocks and asks if Hurley would like to share the cab. Hurley agrees. The guitar case Hurley brings back to the island is on the seat next to Jacob. Hurley asks what he was in jail for, Jacob replies that he wasn’t in jail, he was waiting for Hurley. Hurley assumes Jacob is another dead person, but Jacob says he’s not dead at all. Jacob asks why he won’t go back to the island; Hurley says it’s because he’s cursed — he believes it’s his fault the plane crashed, some of his friends died there, and why he talks to dead people. Jacob argues that talking to people who’ve died isn’t a curse, it’s a blessing. Hurley says it’s pretty great except for the part where he’s crazy. “I’ve got some news for you, Hugo,” says Jacob. “You’re just going to have to take my word on this. You are not crazy.” Jacob tells him about Ajira 316 and tells him it’s his choice if he wants to go. Jacob asks the driver to stop the cab and gets out. Hurley points out that Jacob forgot his guitar, but Jacob says it’s not his guitar.

The Others continue their trek towards Jacob. Locke tells everyone to take a break, that they still have a long ways to go before they reach Jacob. Sun stops Ben and asks who Jacob is. Ben says Jacob is “in charge of this island.” Locke may be the leader, but the leader answers to Jacob. When Sun asks what Jacob is like, Ben admits that he’s never met Jacob.

A few dozen feet away, Richard stares warily at Locke, and finally Locke asks him what’s wrong. Richard says that Ben told him that he killed Locke, strangling him to death, and Richard can’t help wondering how Locke is alive. Locke replies that Richard’s been on the island longer than he has, and if anyone would know the answer to that question, it should be him (Richard). Richard says he’s seen a lot of things he can’t even describe, but he’s never seen anyone come back to life. Locke counters that he’s never seen someone who doesn’t age. Richard replies that he doesn’t age “because of Jacob,” and his guess is that Jacob is also the reason Locke returned to life. Locke lies, saying he agrees and that he’s taking them to see Jacob so he can thank him. He then says that once his business with Jacob is finished, they’re going to need to deal with the rest of the passengers of Ajira 316. Richard asks what he means by “deal with,” and Locke says that Richard knows exactly what he means.

A canoe arrives on the shore carrying Ilana, Bram, a few others, and an unconscious Frank Lapidus, as well as Ilana’s mysterious steel crate. Bram asks why they brought Frank along, Ilana says they might need him. Bram argues that Frank didn’t know the answer to the question, “What lies in the shadow of the statue?” but Ilana says that that doesn’t mean Frank isn’t important. “You think he’s a candidate?” Bram asks. Ilana points out that Frank’s awake, and Frank opens his eyes, asking what he’s a candidate for. Dragged to his feet by Bram, Frank asks Ilana who she is. “We’re friends,” she replies. He asks if they smack all their friends around, and she smiles, answering, “Only the ones we like.” Suddenly, Bram drops his hot-head persona and becomes much more friendly to Frank, offering him a canteen of water. Frank asks what’s in the steel crate, and they show him, though we can’t yet see. Frank is stunned by what he sees. “Terrific,” he says.

As the Others’ march continues, Locke pulls up in step beside Ben and asks why Ben hasn’t yet told Richard about Locke’s plan to kill Jacob. Ben says he assumed Locke would prefer it kept a secret, and then tells him about his encounter with the smoke monster beneath the Temple, at which time he was told to do everything Locke says or he’d be killed. Locke is thrilled to hear that Ben is willing to do whatever he tells him to, and remarks that he won’t have to convince Ben after all. When Ben asks what he means, Locke says that Ben’s going to be the one who kills Jacob, not Locke.

As Ilana and her group walk through the jungle, Frank remarks that he wishes they’d never shown him what’s inside the steel crate. He asks what they’re going to do with “it.” Bram replies that they need to show it to somebody, “so they’ll know who they’re up against.” Frank asks what they are up against, and Bram says it’s something a lot scarier than what’s inside the box. But he reassures Frank, telling him that as long as he’s with them, he’ll be safe. Frank asks again who they are, and Bram replies, “We’re the good guys.”

The group arrives at its destination: Jacob’s cabin. They find the ring of ash around the cabin has been disturbed, with breaks in the ring. Ilana tells them to wait here, and walks into the cabin alone. She finds it in shambles, but there’s a piece of burlap with a drawing on it, stuck to the wall by a knife. She takes it and exits, telling Bram that Jacob wasn’t there and hasn’t been there for a long time. “Someone else has been using it,” she says, before ordering her people to burn it. Frank expresses concern that burning the cabin could set the whole jungle on fire, but they ignore him. Bram asks what they’re supposed to do now, and Ilana shows him the burlap. The drawing on it depicts the four-toed statue, and their direction from here.

Locke’s group arrives back at the beach where the Oceanic 815 survivors lived. Locke suggests everyone take another rest. Ben sits alone on the beach, until Locke approaches. Locke points out that behind them on the ground is the door to the Swan hatch, where the two of them first met. Locke asks Ben about the day he first took Locke to meet Jacob. Ben admits that he was pretending most of it, talking to an empty chair, because he was embarrassed not to have ever seen Jacob. But he was still as surprised as Locke when things started moving around the room all on their own. “I lied,” says Ben. “That’s what I do.” Ben asks why Locke wants him to kill Jacob. Locke points out his surprise that Ben doesn’t already want to, considering everything Ben did out of loyalty to Jacob, and all of the terrible things that happened to him in return.

Nearby, Sun spots Claire’s crib that Locke built her for Aaron. Inside it, she finds Charlie’s “DS” ring (Drive Shaft), which he gave to Claire before he died. The ring reminds her of her wedding day.

Onboard the sub, sedatives are being passed out among the civilians. Kate tells Sawyer and Juliet why she came back to get them, and that they have to escape to stop Jack from blowing up the hydrogen bomb. Sawyer says they’re not going to help her.

In the Tunnels, Sayid reads through Daniel’s journal to find out what Dan’s plan was for the bomb. Dan intended to dismantle the bomb and remove the much smaller and more portable plutonium core, and take it to the Swan. Sayid says they have two hours to get the core to the Swan site, as that’s how much time is left from the timetable Faraday set forth.

At the Swan site, Radzinsky arrives to find that Dr. Chang ordered the drill to stop drilling towards the pocket of energy far below. Chang argues that with all non-essentials evacuated and the possibility of a Hostile insurrection, now isn’t the time for Radzinsky’s experiments. Radzinsky says he’s been working on this project for six years. His work is dedicated to “manipulating electromagnetism in ways we’ve only dreamed of.” He says he came to the island to change the world, and that’s what he’s going to do. Radzinsky orders the drilling to continue.

On the sub, Kate has explained everything to Sawyer and Juliet about Jack’s plan to change history. Yet Sawyer stills says he intends to leave the island. When a Dharma man brings them their sedatives, Juliet knocks him out and takes the keys to their handcuffs. She points out that they decided to leave the island together — it wasn’t his decision alone — and now they’re going to go back, because they can’t abandon all of the people there to die from the bomb.

Free and armed now, the three of them commandeer the sub long enough to have the captain surface it. They tell him to continue on course once they’re gone. To prevent them from communicating with Horace or anyone else on the island about what’s happened, Sawyer shoots their radio.

Jack locates a backpack in the Tunnels which Sayid uses to store the bomb core in. Richard picks up a large sledgehammer and carries it along. He quietly asks Jack about Locke, whom he met in the 1950s. He says he’s left the island three times to visit Locke as a child since then, but Locke never seemed all that special to him. He asks if Jack knows Locke, and Jack says yes, and that Richard shouldn’t give up on him.

Once they have everything they need, Richard leads them through the Tunnels to a particular spot, where he uses his sledgehammer to break through. Beyond lies the basement of a Dharma Barracks house. Jack volunteers to go first into the house, but Eloise stops him, reminding him that she’s in charge here and that she’ll go first. But before she can get inside the basement, Richard knocks her out from behind, and tells the others that he did it to save his people’s leader. She’ll be mad at him later, but at least she’ll be alive. With that, Richard takes his leave and carries her away.

Jack and Sayid emerge upstairs to find they are in Horace and Amy’s house, but no one’s home, and the entire Barracks compound is in an uproar. The alarm is sounding, and announcements are being constantly made about the possible Hostile incursion, telling all of the Dharma folk to be prepared to defend themselves. Jack asks how they’re supposed to get out of there, but Sayid spots one of Horace’s jumpsuits and says they’ll hide in plane sight. Outside, they stroll through the compound as if they belong there, but Roger Linus spots Sayid and recognizes him as the man who shot Ben. Before Jack and Sayid can talk him out of it, Roger shoots Sayid in the stomach. Jack opens fire on the Dharma people, killing a few of them, and prepares to fight his way out while dragging Sayid, when up drives a Dharma van with Hurley, Jin, and Miles inside, who drive away and help them escape.

At sea, Sawyer, Juliet, and Kate paddle a liferaft to shore, though they can’t tell which part of the island it is. On the beach, they’re greeted by none other than Vincent the dog, who’s quickly followed by Rose and Bernard, who aren’t entirely happy to see them.

In the van, Jack tries to stop Sayid’s bleeding, but won’t let Hurley pull over to make it easier. Jack tells Hurley to drive to the Swan, and then he remarks to Jin that he’s found a way to reunite him with Sun.

Rose and Bernard lead the others through the jungle to a small shelter they’ve built for themselves, where they’ve been living for the last three years, alone. Sawyer says he had Jin out searching the island for them grid by grid, and Rose replies that they know that, and intentionally eluded Jin’s searches. Rose and Bernard know the others joined up with Dharma, and Sawyer says he could have brought both of them in too if he’d known they were here. Rose replies that they decided to keep to themselves “because we’re retired.” They made a nice, quiet place for themselves where they could live out their days in peace, explains Bernard. When Sawyer and Kate try to explain the situation with Jack, Rose and Bernard are unmoved. “It’s always something with you people,” says Rose. “You traveled back thirty years in time, and you’re still trying to find ways to shoot each other?” Juliet asks to know which way the Barracks are, or they’re all going to be dead from Jack’s bomb. Bernard shrugs and says, “So we die. We just care about being together.” Juliet is moved by their affection for each other and tries to make eye contact with Sawyer, but he’s busy similarly looking at Kate (who doesn’t notice). Rose tells them which direction the Barracks are in, and they leave.

In the van, Sayid says he needs to modify the bomb so it will detonate on impact. Hurley suddenly stops the van, because Sawyer, Kate, and Juliet are standing in the middle of the road, blocking their path.

  • Tawaret, the Egyptian goddess of fertility.
    Question: What did the four-toed statue originally depict?
    [2.23]
  • Richard claimed that he didn’t age “because of Jacob.” How exactly Jacob caused him to be this way remains to be seen.
    Question: Why doesn’t Richard age?
    [3.20]
  • Rose and Bernard are alive, but they’ve hidden themselves away in the jungle for three years, at a remote location where they could live out their days in retirement, together, away from the cares of others.
    Question: Sawyer, Jin, Juliet, Miles, and Daniel have wound up in 1977 after all that jumping through time. Are they the only members of the original Oceanic 815 group of survivors left alive? Did anyone else end up in 1977 with them? What about Rose and Bernard? What’s become of them?
    [5.08]
  • Ilana works for Jacob.
    Question: Who does Ilana really work for?
    [5.10]

  • Who is the Man in Black, aka Jacob’s Nemesis?
  • How did Jacob and the Man in Black come to be on the island?
  • Jacob and the Man in Black have a real yin/yang thing going on. What’s the nature of their relationship? And why can’t they kill each other?
  • Why does the Man in Black want to kill Jacob?
  • Jacob appears to be responsible for bringing everyone to the island that gets there. How exactly does Jacob bring people to the island?
  • Why was an enormous statue of an Egyptian fertility goddess (Tawaret) erected on the island? And what is the significance of Jacob living beneath it?
  • Why did Jacob touch so many of the castaways in their pre-island past? For what purpose did he mark them this way?
  • What is Ilana’s history with Jacob?
  • What happened to Ilana in the past, that gave her such a severe head wound?
  • What did Jacob need Ilana’s help with?
  • If Jacob hasn’t been living in the cabin, who has? The Man in Black? Is this who Ben and Locke encountered the day they visited the cabin?

Jacob has been revealed at last. And in the very first scene, no less! How long did it take you to realize who that was?

We know that the Black Rock ran ashore on the island at some point in the mid-1800s. Which puts Jacob and his counterpart’s initial scene in this episode around that same time.

White and black have always been important symbols on the show for good and evil, and in their very first scene together, Jacob is wearing a white tunic, while the 2nd Man wears one that’s almost identical — only black.

Jacob and the 2nd Man made reference to others in the past who’ve come to the island. Yet to our knowledge, the Black Rock and whoever was on board were the earliest visitors to the island. Who came there before them? How many others in the past have come — or been brought — to the island?

We still haven’t seen the statue from the front, and I can’t help but wonder if there’s a reason for that. For example, could there be a symbol there we might recognize? But we did get a decent look at the side of its head, which resembled a crocodile. That would make the statue a dead ringer for the Egyptian god Sobek, or maybe Taweret.

Man, that kid they got to play young Kate looked freakishly like Evangeline Lilly, didn’t she? The actress even had Lilly’s mannerisms and expressions down cold.

Richard told Locke that he didn’t age because of Jacob. So I’m thinking Richard came to the island at some point in the distant past — maybe as the captain of the Black Rock, as some fans believe — and was saved or changed by Jacob. Hopefully we’ll get a full flashback on this in Season 6.

What exactly does being a “candidate” mean, as Bram asked Ilana about the possibility of Frank being one? Could it be a candidate in the same sense as Miles, who Bram attempted to recruit to their cause three years ago? Or does “candidate” designate something else altogether?

Frank’s “terrific” — his response after seeing the contents of the steel crate — reminded me of the first act of the show’s pilot episode. When everyone is gathered on the beach the night of the crash and they hear the sound of the smoke monster in the jungle, Charlie frowns, and utters the same word. I don’t believe there’s any connection between the two occurrences, but it’s always fun to see little winks at things from the show’s past.

Something itched at my brain the way Eloise Hawking took charge over the Others in last week’s episode, even ordering Richard around. But I didn’t yet make the leap that she was the leader of the Others, and not Widmore. Wow. So Widmore became the leader after Eloise, no doubt when she decided to leave the island with baby Daniel. We still don’t know exactly when or why that happened, and I’m hoping we’ll get more details on that.

I’m wondering if that was Ben’s house that Richard sledgehammered his way into from the Tunnels. It looked a lot like it, didn’t it? But then, the tiny tunnel leading from Ben’s house to the magic monster-summoning toilet drain looked very different — there were no ancient ruins or anything else but a basic cave structure.

How much did you love Rose and Bernard’s retirement? They even looked after Vincent. Much like Sawyer and Juliet, these two lovebirds settled down over the last three years and found true happiness — and even managed to evade being found by either Dharma or the Hostiles. They intentionally checked themselves out of the island’s ongoing dramas, and it’s not hard to understand why. But if the 1977 castaways somehow manage to jump themselves back to 2007, then Rose and Bernard would almost certainly be brought along for the ride. So don’t assume we’ve seen the last of them (though this was a fine swan song for them if it should turn out that way).

I wish we knew what the ring of ash around Jacob’s cabin means. It’s been speculated by fans that it was some sort of containment system, keeping Jacob inside the cabin. It seems more likely to me that it might’ve been keeping the 2nd Man out. But the fact that it was found broken in this episode was a source of great concern to Bram and Ilana, which means it’s significant.

It’s interesting to me that Jacob apologized to Ilana for not arriving at her hospital bed sooner. Did he heal her injuries? Was it a trade — “I’ll heal you if you help me?” Ilana must be pretty darn special in the grand scheme, if she is friends with Jacob. I want more backstory on her, stat. She’s poised to be a player in Season 6 for sure. How did she end up in that hospital, and had she been shot in the head as it appeared? Who shot her? And what is her prior relationship with Jacob? (I half expected her to turn out to be his daughter.)

Who else has been using the cabin in Jacob’s absence, in 2007? Christian Shephard, for one.

And what happened to the cabin? The last time we saw it was near the end of Season 4, when Locke found Claire and Christian there, it was in better condition than the husk it was here. What happened to the cabin in the three years (in story time) between then and now?

For those that like to follow Lost’s many book references, Jacob was reading Everything That Rises Must Converge by Flannery OConnor, while he waited for Locke to take his destined tumble out of a highrise window.

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