Tonight’s episode marks the beginning of a series of episodes that should satisfy LOST fans who have been clamoring for answers.
More, with spoilers about tonight’s episode, random observations, and miscellaneous linkage, after the break.
Links and Miscellanea:
- For the second week in a row, the Official LOST Podcast didn’t include anything from producer/writers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, which probably means that Cuse and Lindelof are too busy with actual show development to answer fan questions and comment about the show. This is probably a good think for LOST, as Lindelof and Cuse have been directly involved with most of the show’s best moments and episodes, but it makes the podcasts less essential. (Not coincidentally, the pair wrote this week’s episode.) In this week’s podcast, there is some behind-the-scenes discussion with Jorge Garcia, Josh Holloway and Danial Dae Kim, as well as an interview with the guy who edits the Official LOST magazine (shameless cross promotion, mostly).
- Here’s a short feature article on Anne Nahabedian, who guest-starred in tonight’s episode as Amira, one of Sayid’s victims.
- Some LOST fans think Nathan Petrelli was referencing LOST in last week’s episode of Heroes. It’s not really a stretch: Heroes creator Tim Kring is friends with co-creator Damon Lindelof.
- Although LOST may no longer have the massive popularity it enjoyed during its first season, ratings have improved over the last couple of weeks, and it still rates well among affluent viewers.Other shows that over-perform among wealthier viewers include “The Office,” “Scrubs,” “30 Rock” and “Desperate Housewives.”
Observations and Speculations:
- So, now we’ve seen the Flame Station. To review, we’ve seen six stations so far: the Swan Station (aka “the hatch”); the Arrow Station (the abandoned home of the Tailies, where a glass eye and a bible with orientation footage was found); the Pearl Station (the monitoring station where eyepatch was first seen); the Staff Station (aka “Caduceus,” where Claire was taken after she was abducted); the Hydra Station (on Alcatraz island); and now, the Flame. If you recall the Swan orientation film was labeled “3 of 6” and the Swan Station was Station 3. Likewise, the Pearl Station orientation video was labeled 5 of 6, with the Pearl Station as “station 5.” Thus, we can safely assume that there are six stations, and that there were originally six DHARMA Initiative stations and that we’ve now seen them all.
- Here are the stations, as laid out on the hatch’s blast door map.
- When Locke, Sayid and Kate—awesome trio, by the way—head out on their rescue mission, they follow a bearing of 305 degrees north, based on the “lift up your eyes and look north” scripture, and the John 3:05 citation below it (not the same verse, by th way). When Ben told Michael how to exit the island, he said to pilot the boat at a bearing of 325 degrees. We know from an earlier episode, however, that the island does screwy things to compasses. It apparently has it’s own magnetic properties (assuming that these properties are still around following the purple sky incident).
- Here’s my theory on the cat: I think it may not be a cat at all, but a manifestation of “the Monster.” Remember that several characters have seen images/persons/animals from their past as manifestations on the island. Jack saw his father, Kate saw a black horse (which Sawyer also saw, by the way), Eko saw his brother. In Eko’s case, we know that this was the Monster. We also know, from Eko’s previous encounter, that the black smoke is somehow able to gleen images from the person’s past. This particular cat has significance to Sayid, not just because it belonged to a person that Sayid once tortured, but because it was a symbol of the horrible things that people are capable of: kids throwing firecrackers at a trapped animal. Of course, the fact that eyepatch knows the cat, and calls him “Nadia” (another significant character from Sayid’s past) is beyond odd.
- I’m hoping that in the future, we can look forward to a scene featuring Ben Linus holding Nadia the Cat and stroking her, Blofeld-style.
- Hurley was the one wearing a red shirt this episode. Take from that what you will.
- I thought it was funny that Sawyer didn’t want the “Guns and Ammo” magazine when he realized that it had been Paolo’s toilet reading. Sawyer’s a bit more anal retentive than he lets on. Gratuitous and probably useless observation: on the cover of the magazine, there was an article titled “Choosing the Right Caliber for Defense.” There was also an article called “Stories from the Bush,” which may be an indication that it was Locke’s magazine he had been reading prior to his planned walkabout excursion.
- A quick inventory of things we saw at the Flame Station: one red cow, one black and white head of cattle, one appaloosa horse (saddled, with stirrups latched high), one satellite dish, a rusty logging saw and some rusty horseshoes, an old cart, a metal fan, some furniture that looks to date back to the early 1980s, a painting, a small bookshelves with books, a chess-playing computer (which also seems to date to the 1980s), DHARMA Initiative Vodka, DHARMA Initiative Merlot, some botanical prints of trees, kitchen appliances, pots and pans, DHARMA soda crackers, a refrigerator stocked with fresh meat, an old mechanical typewriter, electronic equipment, a surveillance camera (with red light blinking), a medical kit, a pitcher and serving tray, rope, file boxes, a shelf full of DHARMA Initiative manuals (one labeled “operations manual,” and another labeled “food drop protocol”), a rack of identical Flame Station jumpsuits, a DI branded flashlight, an old lantern, shovels, explosives, pitchforks, some old milk cans, and a loud speaker.
- Eyepatch’s name is Mikhail Bakunin, and he claims to be a former member of the Soviet military. The printed material Locke examines has some Cyrillic writing on it. My wife, who is a former Russian language minor, but who has forgotten most of what she learned, was able to identify only a few words: the name “Andrei,” underlined and written again in the margins, the word “Afghanistan,” written both in the text and in the margin, and the word “revolution.” No doubt, someone will post a full translation of the pages on the Internet soon.
- It was nice to see Sayid asking some of the questions that a normal person would want to ask. (Too bad that the person giving the answers turned out to be unreliable.) It was also satisfying to have Sawyer say to Nikki, belligerently, “Who are you?” Sometimes the writers throw us fans a bone.
- Why did the Others bother to attempt the charade that there was one last DHARMA Initiative member left on the island? Perhaps the Others feel they need to convince someone on the mainland that there is still a DHARMA presence there so that the supply drops will continue.
- But why did Ms. Klugh insist that Mikhail kill her, and why did Mikhail want to be killed himself?
- I liked that Danielle excused herself from the events at the Flame Station. This makes sense: Danielle is reclusive, which explains why she knows so little about the Others. Still, she seems awfully incurious and ignorant for someone who has lived on the island for so long.
- It’s hard to say for sure, but the man on the computer looked more like Wickman I(from the Pearl orientation film) than Candle (from the Swan film). He didn’t seem to have a glass eye.
- Sayid’s flashback was interesting, but not very revealing. Again, we weren’t really told anything about his character that we don’t already know. Naveen Andrews is a very good actor, though, so I won’t complain when we get to see more of him. By the way, that Middle Eastern restaurant in Paris? An old YMCA in Honolulu.
- The ping pong scenes were a nice diversion, but it would be tough to actually play ping pong with a practice golf ball. It’s always fun to see Sawyer brought down a peg.
1. Swan; 2. Arrow; 3. Staff; 4. Pearl; 5. Hydra (not pictured – the map’s maker, Radzinsky, likely was never able to venture off the island); and 6. Flame.
This is the sort of episode that LOST fans lap up. It had great acting, solid writing, and (obviously) enough dangling clues to keep us chewing for a while. I expect more in the coming weeks. I know that I certainly have nothing to complain about with this one.