LOST: “Greatest Hits”

Shouldn’t it be “Greatest Hit”? “You all everybody…” (repeat ad nauseum).

Spoilers from the penultimate season 3 episode and other LOST-related stuff after the break.

Links and miscellanea:

  • The official podcast was worth a listen this week, if only for this fairly concise and straight-forward explanation of Ben’s actions vis-a-vis Locke and Jacob from creator Carlton Cuse: “Ben took Locke out to see Jacob as sort of a litmus test. He wanted to find out if, in fact, John Locke really was special, and if John Locke could see or hear Jacob, that would that Locke was special. So when Locke did hear Jacob, that really got—that freaked Ben out. That was a threat to Ben and his primacy. So he lead him over to the pit and he shot him because he doesn’t want his leadership challenged by John Locke.” I can’t think of a more straight-forward explanation than that. Lost of ways that information can be extrapolated as well.
  • Other notable tidbits from the official podcast: the storyline involving Jacob will be explored more during season 4, but not during the remainder of this season; other DHARMA personnel were incorporated into the Others at the time of the purge; we still haven’t seen all there is to know about DHARMA and Ben’s background; and, with the new scheduling news, the state of season 7’s zombie season is indeterminate.
  • Yunjin Kim (Sun) has written and will be releasing a book—in Korean—about her acting success.
  • Although ABC has announced its fall lineup, it’s still not clear what timeslot LOST will end up with. (Remember that LOST won’t be returning until February 2008.) It’s likely that it will be an earlier time slot than what it has now.
  • Doc Jensen at EW.com interviewed Lindelof and Cuse, and discussed with them the scheduling of LOST’s remaining three seasons and this money quote from Lindelof: “And more importantly, we meet Jacob — the elusive, unseen, presumed leader of the Others — for the first time. And this is a character who is every bit as significant to our universe as the Emperor was to the Star Wars universe — a character that you didn’t get to meet until Return of the Jedi but was referred to all through the preceding films. Jacob is a guy who is going to have a very significant, ongoing sort of story value in our show.” Also notable is Lindelof’s explanation for this season’s finale code word (“the rattlesnake in the mailbox”). There are lots of spoilers popping up about the season finale, by the way. I won’t be posting them here. I won’t even be looking at them, if I can avoid it.
  • You’ll soon be able to stream complete episodes of LOST on your Sprint mobile phone. I wonder what ever happened of the idea to run bonus scenes only available to cell phone users. Fell by the wayside, I guess.

Observations and speculations:

  • Today’s dialog-that-is-really-a-knowing-nod-to-the-fans moment: Charlie says, “Why does everything have to be such a secret? How about some openness for a change?”
  • Jack had his best speech of the season, punctuated with “we’re gonna blow them all to hell.” If Jack is like this more consistently, I might actually start liking him. I’m a little worried about his psyche, though. It must be a little disorienting to go from touch football camaraderie to homicidal rage in such a short time.
  • I actually kind of enjoyed the non-linear, episodic flashbacks in this episode. The flashbacks are becoming more and more irrelevant, especially for characters who have already had multiple flashbacks. So they might as well mess around with the format a bit.
  • Incidentally, Drive Shaft was on their way to Clitheroe, a town in Lancashire in Western England, when they first heard their one hit on the radio. Clitheroe has a website that looks like it hasn’t changed since 1998. No wonder Charlie calls it the “arse end of nowhere.” Clitheroe must be the Tallahassee of England.
  • Well-known rock bands from Manchester, England: The Smiths, Joy Division, New Order, The Stone Roses, The Chemical Brothers, James, Oasis, and Drive Shaft. Incidentally, Dominic Monaghan (Charlie) and Marsha Thomason (Naomi) really are both from Manchester.
  • The underwater station, “The Looking Glass” is an obvious reference to Lewis Caroll and the Alice stories. The second time Alice visits Wonderland, it’s Through the Looking Glass. Episode 1.5 was called “White Rabbit,” another reference to Wonderland. This episode, perhaps coincidentally, also had a white rabbit. (Image †Lostpedia)
  • Charlie learned to swim at a Butlin’s Holiday Camp. According to Wikipedia: “Butlin’s Holiday Camps were founded by (later Sir) Billy Butlin to provide economical holidays in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Between 1936 and 1966, nine camps were built. Three centres remain in use by the Butlins company today. Butlins are noted for their famous “Redcoats” who provide entertainment and organisation at every level. There was a UK TV satirical sitcom during the 1980s based on a Butlins-style holiday camp called Hi-de-Hi!”
  • Sayid apparently recovered more from the Flame Station (before Locke blew it up) than I realized, including detailed plans of the Looking Glass Station.
  • Finally, the triumphant return of Bernard and Rose. Remind me what was so bad about Paolo and Nikki again. On the other hand, at least Bernard can shoot. That’s got to count for something.
  • Ben is looking fierce. “John had an accident” isn’t much of an explanation, but apparently, it’s good enough.
  • Ryan Pryce is an Other that we’ve met before a few times. He was charged with guarding Sayid when he was chained to the swingset in Othersville. He appears to have a paramilitary/law enforcement role among the Others. By the way, I don’t think I’ve mentioned it before, but Richard Alpert also refers to this guy.
  • Alex is questioning whether Ben is actually his father. I wonder why she feels such an affinity toward the survivors.
  • Drive Shaft was named after Dexter Stratton. I’ve no idea who that is, but apparently it’s an ancestor of Charlie and Liam’s mother.
  • Once again, Charlie is singing Oasis’s “Wonderwall” on the street, just before it starts to rain. Only this time, he doesn’t see Desmond. I couldn’t tell if the woman that Charlie saves is Sayid’s Nadia, or some other woman of Middle Eastern ethnicity.
  • Hurley wore a big red shirt all episode. I’m coming around to the idea that this probably means nothing.
  • I was comforted to see that Vincent is making the trek to the radio tower with the other survivors.
  • Is it just me, or does the Looking Glass Station look quite a bit like the cargo bay of the spaceship Serenity?
  • In the end, it’s Charlie vs. a blond and a brunette with guns. For whatever reason, when I saw these women, my first thought was that they are not Others. They may be DHARMA holdovers or someone else. I suppose we’ll learn more during next week’s season finale.

This was a nice, tense episode where everything moved along nicely and all the pieces are in place for a very exciting two-hour season finale. (Remember that it starts an hour earlier than usual.) Please do not post any spoilers about next week’s episode. I’m LA-LA-LA not LA-LA-LA listening. Seriously. It should be good, even if it does “change everything,” whatever that means. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.


47 thoughts on “LOST: “Greatest Hits”

  1. My favorite quote: Karl: “I thought you were bringing rabbit?”

    The outrigger scenes rock. I just like seeing actors work hard.

    I actually got choked up when Charlie wrote his 10th greatest hit. So easily manipulated!

    That was definitely Nadia.

    It is interesting, in the whole time/space continuum construct built up by Lost, that Desmond was not in the scene with Charlie singing Oasis. If he was, he wouldn’t run into Nadia, I guess. Maybe there is some final version of the past that Desmond will live through that will not involve running up to Ben and questioning him? That’s the issue with all of these playing-with-time movies, the plot can’t hold up with multiple viewpoints. Maybe Lost will, who knows.

    A friend of mine is predicting that the Locke storyline – whether he lives or not- will be wrapped up this season. Ugh.

  2. Compelling drama! I loved it.

    Did anyone else notice that when Ben gave Alex her gun back it was Alex who had a bloody hand?

    Well we know now why Danielle went to get some dynamite…

    I wonder what Jacob told Ben about the Losties. Remember, Ben stayed in the hut for a few seconds longer than Locke did. Did Jacob really tell Ben that he needed to up his schedule?

  3. I liked this episode and got chocked up early over Charlie. They fooled me for a minute when Des offered to take Charlie’s place and I was pissed that I had wasted time mourning Charlie, but I liked it when Charlie whapped him in the face with the oar.

    Wonder if Claire will ever know the sacrifice Charlie was prepared to make for him.

    I agree that the women down in the Looking Glass strike me as “non- other” although I’m not sure why. Maybe Dharma survivors presumed to be dead by Ben and now going to help kick ass with the Losties.

  4. Uhm – Charlie was wearing TOTALLY different clothes this time while singing then the time he appeared in Desmond’s flashback.

    I’m betting that he has done some singing of Oasis on other occasions, so the non-appearance of Desmond means little.

    And “Greatest Hits” was referring to Charlie’s list, not Drive Shaft’s song.

  5. That was definitely Nadia.

    If it was, then it means that two different Losties have met Nadia other than Sayid. Locke met her in California when he did a home inspection for her, and Charlie’s met her in England.

  6. This was purely a set-up show for next weeks finale. I remember they did the same thing last year with the penultimate show. Good set-up, btw.

    My wife told me that I should prepare for her to cry if Charlie dies. I was actually getting a little moist-in-the-eye at a couple parts too. I think he’s definitely gone next week and I will miss him. The countdown was a very sweet way to end Charlie’s life on the show.

  7. No on commented that Liam made a comment that Charlie is the only Drug free rock star in the world, and we all know about Charlies Heroine addiction. Thoughts?

  8. Charlie ended up on the flight because he was on his way back to USA after visiting Liam in Australia. He wanted to get the band back together, but Liam turned him down because he had a family. If you recall, in last night’s episode, Liam gave Charlie the ring because Charlie was suppose to be the responsible one and move on to have a family and Liam predicted that he was on the road to self destruction. When did Charlie pick up his heroine addiction?

  9. What a great episode. Fun to see Charlie (former hobbit) in a scene making solemn decisions about whether to take a (sentimentally) powerful ring. I liked that reference.

    Dan, Alex’s hand was bloody because she’d been carving up a dead rabbit.

    This is probably just a writing issue, but anybody notice that Jack knew the Others were sending ten men, even though Alex never told Carl that? Maybe it’s just something Carl knows based on knowledge of the Others’ paramilitary force (or maybe Jack
    does), but then again, maybe not.

    Greg, I agree with you that it’s almost possible to like Jack when he’s actually invovling people and making cool, violent plans. But then he still always talks in such a commanding way. “You’re not staying.” “You’re going.” How about “you know, Rose, I think it would be better if you come with us, because . . .” Come on, writers, let’s stop trying to manufacture conflict when there’s none there.

    Do we know why Jin was chosen as the third shooter?

    I was sad that Locke’s fate was left out of this. Hopefully we see what happens to him in the finale. Either way, I’m really excited for the finale– going to be fantastic.

  10. I may have fabricated this in my own mind over time, but I recall Charlie being a holdout on drugs when the band started up. The decline was partially caused by Charlie giving in and doing drugs. I remember Charlie being frustrated with Liam and his drug use. These flashbacks were from the early days of Charlie’s story arc (i.e. first time on radio, playing on the street.)

    Am I making this up?

  11. It was Liams Drug use that ended the band. They were suppose to do a commericial, but Liam was strung out and couldn’t do it so the whole band got fired. Charlie was fed up with his drug use and sold his piano to get him into rehab in Austrailia. I just can’t figure out when Charlie turned to drugs.

  12. bbell,

    Dan, Alex’s hand was bloody because she’d been carving up a dead rabbit.

    Thanks, for some reason I missed that…

  13. Did you see the look on Charlie’s face when Naomi told him about the tribute to him when they found him *dead*? She goes on to tell him that they released a new album: *Greatest Hits*. Perhaps Charlie took some comfort in the plural noun.

    I also got the feeling that the ladies in the Looking Glass hatch were original Dharmites rather than Hostiles. Are we setting the stage for an alliance between the Dharma holdouts and the Losties? Could be interesting.

  14. Do we know why Jin was chosen as the third shooter?

    Well, he was in the Korean military, no? Surely he’d know his way around a gun, and given the fact that Desmond was off with Charlie and Locke is laying in a pit, he seems like the best choice.

  15. I don’t think the writers are manufacturing conflict when they have Jack speak in a commanding tone. It’s totally within character. He’s a surgeon, used to bossing people around in life and death situations, and he has well-established control issues.

  16. Yeah, but Brian, right after that conversation, Sayid then started commanding Jack. It’s just the way the writers write. Kate, Sayid, and Jack all use this aggressive, imperative way of speaking. Man, it’s annoying.

  17. Re: Jack’s way of speaking, it does strike me as empty surgeon’s commanding tone. Empty, because Jack is so uncomfortable with being a leader. Sayid is sure to die this season as he’s such a sterling character.

    Oh correction on my earlier comment- my friend thinks Locke storyline *won’t* be resolved this season (she doesn’t read spoilers, so it’s pure speculation).

    Yeah, Nadia gets around. Maybe she works for the CIA? With the old commander that also worked in the hatch?

    Alex’s bloody hand is interesting, because I remember when she passed the gun to Karl, it wasn’t bloody anymore. In MacBethian terms, Locke’s blood was on her hands because she gave the gun to him, and Ben swiped it. If it was just knives, Locke would have surely been in the better position (he’s such a good knife handler). But since Alex upped the ante with the gun, Ben is trying to pin it on her. She wipes her hand, gives gun- now clean- to Karl. Who, ironically, wanted rabbit- the blood that was originally on her hands. I think it’s her way of dealing iwth Ben’s manipulations. “You can’t pin this on me, you pulled the trigger.” And her ability to see through is fog of deceit- the whole “I grew up on the island” “I’m your daddy.”

  18. One thing I found interesting was Alex’s asking Karl about Ben, “Is he my father?” She asked it as though Karl would have some way of knowing the answer, and he looked at her as though he knew but couldn’t tell her. Or so it seemed to me.

  19. Yes. I like the idea of Dharma originals and Losties teaming up against the Others. That would be awesome.

  20. Also, we haven’t really discussed the fact that Claire is going to be taken away by a helicopter. Does that mean rescue (end of series)? Or could it mean someone else gets a hold of a helicopter and takes her away? Also, did anyone else catch when Charlie first met Claire (in last nights flashback) that he said they’d be rescued by a helecopter.

  21. I don’t think the women in the Looking Glass station are Dharmites for two reasons:

    First, Sayid told Jack that he couldn’t use Naomi’s satellite phone because Rousseau’s distress signal was on the same frequency. Sayid then proposed that they go to the radio tower to disable the distress signal. Rousseau said something like, “My distress signal has been broadcasting for 16 years and nobody has ever heard it,” to which Juliet replied, “That’s because we’ve been jamming the signal.” Juliet then described the Looking Glass. This exchange suggests that the Others not only know about the station but also operate or control the station.

    Second, in a prior episode, Ben explained that the Others came to and left the island via the submarine, which was was navigated toward an underwater beacon. Last night’s episode briefly showed Sayid laying out the architectural plans for the Looking Glass. If I recall correctly, the plans showed a submarine docked beneath the station. Presumably, the station houses the navigation beacon and the station is controlled by the Others.

  22. There is still one burning question on my mind from last season’s finale. And that is Desmond/Michael. Desmond attempted to escape the island by boat. But he never made it far before returning right back to the island. Michael and Walt left the island by boat also. We’ve not heard from them all season…what’s the scoop on where Michael and Walt are?

  23. If Charlie really dies, well, I just don’t know what I’ll do. I live for Charlie (and Hurley).

  24. One thing I found curious/suspicious: in all the other episodes we “see” Desmond’s flashes regarding Charlie. In this one, we just take his word for it. Is Desmond telling the truth or lying? Or partially telling the truth?

  25. Desmond lying has crossed my mind. But I’ve settled on the fact that they didn’t want to show Claire getting on the helicopter to add suspense about the details surrounding that event.

  26. meems, I have to say the part of the episode that made me choke up was when Charlie hugged Hurley. I do like their friendship.

  27. I thought we had only seen one of Desmond’s premonitions – the arrow through the throat. We never saw him drown while saving Claire and we never saw him die on the rocks while trying to get the bird. Thus, I don’t think Desmond’s lying.

    Heather – I liked that moment too. Although I’m not the biggest Charlie fan, I really like Hurley.

  28. Charlie HAS to die. I appreciate that they didn’t kill him at the end of this episode, because it would have been too predictable. There are several possibilities about Des’ premonition:

    -Desmond lied to him, because if Charlie KNEW that it was more than just a drowning, he may not have gone.
    – Or, he had to keep it vague for plot purposes or for Charlie’s own good.
    – Or, his flash was off.
    – Or, the Looking Glass WILL flood (just hasn’t happened yet), and Charlie will die in the season finale just as Des predicted.

    I think the latter is more likely.

  29. I think the latter is more likely too, Hayes. Desmond may have seen that Charlie was going to meet up with some people, but at the final point, indeed it will flood and he will flick the switch.

    Now, on this line of thinking, if Desmond saw that Charlie would meet people, and those people happen to be kick-arse girls, I can understand why Desmond would want to take Charlie’s place. 😉

  30. If you slow-motion the “next week on Lost” you’ll see that there is a quick clip of Desmond swimming down to the hatch and another of him holding up what looks like some kind of gun, presumably pointing it at the hatch women. Perhaps Desmond knew the women were in there.

  31. We don’t know much about how Desmond’s flashes work–and Desmond doesn’t either. In the episode “Catch-22” we learned that Desmond sees random events, flashed in rapid succession. They may be out of order, and major details may be left out. Desmond tends to make inferences based on the content of the flashbacks, sometimes inferring causation when it’s not really there (which is ironic, given that his middle and last names are “David Hume”). Additionally, Desmond appears to have visions, but still has to interpret the meaning from his visions. He is capable of misinterpreting as well.

    We also know that Desmond’s flashbacks are only glimpses of a possible future, not the future that must be. If Desmond can change things, there’s no reason to believe that *only* Desmond can change things.

    Which leads me to the conclusion that anything can happen.

  32. I, too noticed that Des is in the Looking Glass in the season finale. I thought he was holding up a shotgun or a harpoon gun.

    IRT the flashes, I don’t think that they are “random,” if by random you mean timeline. They may be random in that they might not have any significance other than the fact that they lead up to the big reveal, but they do seem to be in some sort of chronological order.

    And, Des has now had several experiences with the flashbacks…perhaps he is getting better with them?

  33. I hate the damned “next week on Lost” previews. It ruins a lot of suspense. Like last season when they ended an episode looking for “Henry Gale’s” balloon, unsure whether “Henry Gale” was telling the truth. Then ten seconds later they show the balloon in the preview. It makes me angry. These days I change the channel if I remember.

  34. I don’t understand how Desmond is so sure that if one thing isn’t exactly like it was in his vision, then none of those things will happen. Is there an example that taught him this?

    I don’t understand the love for Hurley. If I hear him say “Dude…” one more time, well I’ll–

    Never mind. I am full of empty threats.

  35. I like the idea that it’s Annie down in the Looking Glass. They looked like Dharma-ites, but could just be like Mikhail, far-flung outposts. Ben seems to want to keep the other Others ignorant of the station.

    It’s not that far below the water.

    Reminds me of cheesy 60s sci-fi.

    It’s not the first time that Desmond has not told the entire truth to Charlie to get Charlie to avoid his fate. I think it was motivating Charlie to go, face certain death, and not get mad at Desmond at the same time. ‘Swim to this thing and encounter gun wielding babes.’ May not convince, but ‘Save everyone.’ May. With certain death, we’re all going to die, right? So he wasn’t technically lying, just sin of omission. It was full of drama, but hey this is a melodramatic episode.

    That was kind of a lark for Hurley- not sheepishly going along with everyone on a hike. I don’t think his story arc has completed so I doubt he’ll die. But if he did, Charlie & Desmond would be full of guilt, which is good drama.

  36. We actually saw Sayid get the plans way back when he first met the Russian dude.

    I really dug the flashbacks this one. As you said unlike some they added a lot to the character. I still want to know what was up from “Charlie as possessed by the Island hallucinations” to Claire accepting him back. That still is so weird it bugs me. More so than any other loose end because it seems like it isn’t a mystery.

    There’s no way they’ll get rid of Locke. I guarantee we’ll see the flighties replace the Others on the island and then divide themselves with Locke vs. Jack.

    The folks underwater will be survivors of the Dharma initiative so we can learn about it. (Even though fans on the internet already know a lot about it) Yeah I know what Ben told Juliet. But we all know how far we can trust Ben.

    Regarding Michael. There’s only one way off the island and that is via a beacon. Ben told Michael the direction to go. I have a feeling though we’ll be seeing Michael again before too long.

  37. I don’t think they’ll be able to bring Walt back, though. By the time they get around to reintroducing his character, the actor playing him is going to be 2-3 years older, which may be difficult to explain.

  38. Yeah. For a while I thought there would be a return with a shift in the progression of time on the island. (i.e. only 80 days had transpired on the island but years off the island) It seems that theory is shot though.

    We’ll see. I’m pretty sure Walt and Michael will be back though. I just don’t know how.

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