LOST: “What Happened, Happened”

Tonight, we got another piece of the jigsaw puzzle: the background on Kate’s activities off-island and her reasons for coming back, and also what happened to Aaron.

Spoilers and a whole lot more after the break.

Links and miscellanea

  • In a very surprising move, ABC/Disney has decided to cancel Lost and not air any more episodes after this season’s cliffhanger ending. Feel free to speculate about how the show ends in comments section below. (Via DarkUFO).
  • Lost might be coming to Hulu (along with a lot of other Disney owned shows), which is cool. I like Hulu, even if I’m baffled by the business model. It reminds me of the late ’90s.
  • Here’s a spoof from the guys at College Humor: Sayid bombs at stand-up.
  • The New York Times has an interview with Young Ben. That’s a tough gig, by the way: playing a younger version of Michael Emerson’s character. I think Sterling Beaumon’s done an admirable job.
  • Lost has won a Peabody award.
  • Due to a crazy busy work schedule of late, I haven’t listened to any of the recent podcasts. Head over to ABC.com and do that work for yourself, why don’t you?
  • Finally, it looks like show runner Damon Lindelof has quit working on Lost in a failure-of-technology-inspired rage. There are unconfirmed rumors circulating that ABC plans to bring Sherwood Schwartz out of retirement to replace him.

Observations and speculations

  • Didn’t it seem odd that Young Ben had an entry wound, but not an exit wound? You would think that being shot at close range, the bullet would have passed through him.
  • The last we saw Sayid, he was running off into the jungle. Then what? He didn’t show up in this episode at all. If he can’t take refuge with the Others, and he’s unwelcome back in DHARMAville, what will become of him?
  • Right after Horace tells Jack that it was “one of us” who let Sayid escape, the camera cuts to a guy with a really fake looking beard that, at first glance, I thought was Tom (aka Mr. Friendly). It wasn’t, but the fake-looking beard still made me very suspicious.
  • The scenes with Roger Linus and Kate really creeped me out. How much you wanna bet that Roger could throw a football to the other side of that island?
  • In the first flashback, we see Kate in a car, with baby Aaron in tow, listening to Patsy Cline’s “She’s Got You.” The lyrics seem thematically appropriate. It’s a love triangle, from the perspective of the loser (i.e., Kate). This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Kate listening to Patsy Cline. This same song was used in the episode “Eggtown.” Also, Kate was playing a Patsy Cline song on the Hatch record player as she tended to an unconscious Sawyer in the season 2 episode, “What Kate Did.” That, and other, Patsy Cline songs have shown up fairly regularly on the show. Cline died in a plane crash, by the way.
  • Then, as Kate is walking with Baby Aaron to Cassidy’s house in Albuquerque, she sings “Catch a Falling Star” to him. This is the song that Claire used to sing to Aaron, and that she requested the future adoptive parents to sing. It was also the tune that played on the mobile above the crib in the nursery in the medical station.
  • So Cassidy and Kate knew each other independently of Sawyer. How crazy is that? Will we ever find out how they knew each other? My best guess: this was during Kate’s criminal, fugitive-from-the-law period. At some point, they must have crossed paths.
  • Cassidy is almost a Yoda-like mentor character for Kate. She helps Kate understand what’s going on in her life with her sagacious observations: she helps Kate understand both Sawyer and her own motivations and helps her come to terms with them.
  • When we first see Sawyer, he’s in the security station, checking out the video monitors. I don’t think it’s by accident that some of the video screens are showing the sonic-fence perimeter. I think someone back at security HQ (Phil, perhaps) is going to see that Kate and Sawyer/Jim took Ben across the boundary to the perimeter. So Kate and Sawyer could end up in limbo-land, with Sayid. It’s just a feeling I have. Even if they weren’t seen, they’re going to have a tough time explaining tonight’s events to the folks back in the barracks.
  • So I guess by now, most people have figured out that Juliet is more than just a mechanic from the auto pool.
  • Juliet mentions that the regular doctor is at the Looking Glass station “until Friday.” The Looking Glass station, you may recall is the underwater base with a moon pool that the Others used to jam transmissions to and from the island. If the sub is away, how do the DHARMA people get to and from the Looking Glass? Not that it matters, just curious.
  • Every scene that Miles was in was excellent, and especially the Hurley and Miles scenes. Talk about ripping down the fourth wall. The conversations between Miles and Sawyer could have been a verbatim transcript from a couple of Lost fans discussing this season.
  • I loved the “Back to the Future” reference, with Hurley staring at his hand to see if it was disappearing.
  • Hurley and Miles’ conversation is also a wonderful exercise in the free-will vs. determinism debate, which likewise always goes round in circles. The same can be said of Kate and Jack’s wrestling over whether they needed to save Young Ben.
  • Personally, I really like the newest version of Jack. (I disagree with Kate here.) He’s got a zen-like quality to him that is really impressive. In a way, it’s a lot like Locke at his finest. Especially this part, “Did you ever think that maybe the island just wants to fix things itself?” The old Jack would have fought hard against this kind of anthropomorphic thinking about the island. “And maybe I was just getting in the way?” He has a point.
  • Best Miles line: (handing Hurley his gun) “Shoot me. Please.”
  • I’m not sure I was convinced of Juliet and Kate’s willingness to save Ben by, of all things, taking him into the Others/Hostile’s territory. Juliet hates Ben, and late time I checked, so does Kate. The “innocent kid” thing only goes so far.
  • Anachronism alert: in the supermarket scene where Kate loses Aaron, she is standing in front of a display that says, “My Solo Cup,” a new product that has a tag on the outside of the cup that the drinker can write their name on to personalize it. This product didn’t exist in 2007, when the scene would have taken place. It’s a small thing, but it’s all I could come up with when I scanned that scene for easter eggs.
  • The woman who was holding Aaron’s hand when Kate finds him looked an awfully lot like Claire from behind. That was a nice touch.
  • Jack helped Ben (via surgery) because Kate asked him to. Sawyer helped Ben (with Kate at the perimeter) because Juliet asked him to. Ben’s a lucky guy that it all worked out so well for him.
  • The quadrangle subtext bleeds all over the dialog between any of the four characters. “I needed you, Jack.” Etc. I guess that’s better than it being right there on the surface.
  • So why did the Oceanic 5 need to return to the island. To save Ben? Is that what had to happen? I’m not sure we know that yet.
  • Jack said he came back because he was supposed to … do … something. How very un-Jack like. He’s embracing the concept of destiny.
  • Just for the record, and in case it hadn’t been explicitly clear before, we now know for certain what Sawyer whispered to Kate on the helicopter, and it is exactly as we all guessed: go find my daughter, Clementine and take care of her.
  • The Others that Kate and Sawyer first see are the grubby, earth-toned, barefooted Others that we’ve seen from time to time. Is this how they always dress, or just when they’re trying to freak people out? I’m still unclear about that.
  • Kate tells Claire’s mother that Claire is still alive. I’m not at all sure that’s true. Now we know that Kate came back to the island to find her. She seems to have been distracted from her quest by this Ben-saving business. Some how, I thought that saving Ben would be related to protecting Aaron, which would relate to why Kate returned. I guess I was wrong.
  • How did Richard Alpert know Benjamin Linus’s name? Were they formally introduced when they ran into each other in the jungle that one time?
  • Richard says, “If I take him, he’s not ever going to be the same again. What I mean is that, he’ll forget this ever happened and that, his innocence will be gone.” Any way you slice it, this feels like one heck of a retcon: it was created specifically to overcome the problem that was sussed out by Miles and Hurley earlier in the episode. I guess with the whole time travel thing, one or two retcons is a necessity.
  • Richard also says, “He will always be one of us.” Remember when we very first met Ben, Rousseau identified him as “One of Them“? My guess is that the change that happens to Ben when Richard takes him into the Temple is very similar to the change that happened to the members of Rousseau’s research team.
  • One of the Others tells Richard, “You shouldn’t do this without asking Ellie. And if Charles finds out…” Yes, he’s talking about Elloise Hawking and Charles Widmore, who are both Others during 1977. Richard’s response, “I don’t answer to either of them.” Does Richard only answer to Jacob, perhaps?
  • I really loved the final scene. Even though it was short, any time that Locke and Ben are on the screen at the same time, it’s a wonderful thing. And Locke’s line couldn’t have been better: “Welcome back to the land of the living.” Zing!

I liked this episode, but it was very expository. Telling Kate’s story had to be done, and the story was told with a journeyman’s skill. It was probably the talkingest Lost episode I can ever remember, though. Lots and lots of people sitting around talking to others. Hopefully, next week will have a lot more action. Without giving away too much, it’s called “Dead is Dead,” and just reading the episode description gives me chills. Should be great.

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35 thoughts on “LOST: “What Happened, Happened”

  1. So Cassidy and Kate knew each other independently of Sawyer. How crazy is that? Will we ever find out how they knew each other? My best guess: this was during Kate’s criminal, fugitive-from-the-law period. At some point, they must have crossed paths.

    You’re exactly right. They established this in S03 E15 “Left Behind.”

  2. So Cassidy and Kate knew each other independently of Sawyer. How crazy is that? Will we ever find out how they knew each other?

    Cassidy helped Kate escape from the police at a gas station. I don’t remember the details, but they were together in an earlier episode. In the first couple of seasons there were all these “coincidences” such as the ex-CIA guy who got Desmond to stay in the hatch also being the CIA guy who interrogated Sayid in Iraq.

    Personally if there’s one set of explanations I hope they don’t ignore it is the story of that CIA guy.

  3. Ah, forgot about that. Somehow, I got the impression from tonight’s episode that it was something more of a substantial friendship.

  4. BTW – I thought it funny that Sayid makes Ben into the person he was.

    Like you I like the new Jack.

    The bit about The Looking Glass is interesting. I hope that’s not just a writer screwup.

    Personally I like how they aren’t doing the love triangle thing. Sawyer’s happy with Juliet and (IMO) is a better man because of it. I see no evidence for the triangle. Which is for the best.

    I suspect next week’s Ben and Locke centric episode will focus on the temple and the smoke monster.

    I liked the episode but agree it was too talking. But I think the writers felt compelled to explain the time travel stuff to more regular viewers. Which indicates time travel is going to get more messy. Probably on the Faraday-centric episode. (Where is that silly man – and we know a little about his trying to change history)

  5. I thoroughly enjoyed the Miles Hurley scenes that poked fun at time travel. But I was once again very annoyed at how much these characters that kept getting screwed over by Ben bended over backwards to save his life! I’m with Sayid. The man is a cheat, a liar, a murderer and in charge of The Others who have, to this point, been your main antagonist group in the show. But I wasn’t pleased in the last episode when Sayid shot young Ben. I knew there was no way the writers would let Ben die, and it cheapened the experience.

    I should also add that it is very interesting how they are making Uncle Rico…er I mean Roger into a very simpathetic guy. It seems out of character for what they have written of him earlier. I just don’t see his kind of person open himself up like he did to Kate. He’s not going to say “boy I’m not the father I thought I would be.”

    Anyways, the show is great, and I’m loving the 5th season. We’re being foreshadowed with “judgment” for Ben next episode. The thing I’ve been looking forward to since the finale of the 3rd season.

  6. In a very surprising move, ABC/Disney has decided to cancel Lost and not air any more episodes after this season’s cliffhanger ending. Feel free to speculate about how the show ends in comments section below. (Via DarkUFO).

    Finally, it looks like show runner Damon Lindelof has quit working on Lost in a failure-of-technology-inspired rage. There are unconfirmed rumors circulating that ABC plans to bring Sherwood Schwartz out of retirement to replace him.

    I’m guessing this was an April Fool’s thing. 🙂

    The last we saw Sayid, he was running off into the jungle. Then what? He didn’t show up in this episode at all. If he can’t take refuge with the Others, and he’s unwelcome back in DHARMAville, what will become of him?

    There have been other Third Party groups in the jungle. Like Rousseau. Sayid knows the jungle, and will survive.

    The woman who was holding Aaron’s hand when Kate finds him looked an awfully lot like Claire from behind. That was a nice touch.

    Did you get the feeling that that woman was working for someone and actually trying to steal Aaron? That’s the feeling I got.

    So why did the Oceanic 5 need to return to the island. To save Ben? Is that what had to happen? I’m not sure we know that yet

    We also don’t know why they were split up in time either. Why some were thrust back to 1977. But if Sayid didn’t get sent back there, who would have shot Ben? If Kate wouldn’t have gone back, who would have taken Ben to the Others to “change” him?

    How did Richard Alpert know Benjamin Linus’s name? Were they formally introduced when they ran into each other in the jungle that one time?

    I think so. I think, if I remember, Richard asked young Ben his name.

    One of the Others tells Richard, “You shouldn’t do this without asking Ellie. And if Charles finds out…” Yes, he’s talking about Elloise Hawking and Charles Widmore, who are both Others during 1977. Richard’s response, “I don’t answer to either of them.” Does Richard only answer to Jacob, perhaps?

    Maybe we’ll finally learn why the conflict between Ben and Charles. After all, we’re told this is the main conflict that drives the actions of the characters of the show.

    I really loved the final scene. Even though it was short, any time that Locke and Ben are on the screen at the same time, it’s a wonderful thing. And Locke’s line couldn’t have been better: “Welcome back to the land of the living.” Zing!

    Ben was none too happy to wake up and see Locke. But I once again see Locke, in the next episode, cater to whatever Ben tells him, EVEN AFTER Locke was strangled to death by this man.

  7. Interesting dialog between Richard and his lackeys when he took Ben. The one guy clearly said something to him that Charles and, I think the blond chick, wouldn’t like it if they knew Richard took Ben in. Then Richard said, “I don’t answer to either of them.” And he seemed a little bitter when he said that.

    It begs the question, who does Richard work for? He reminds me of a worker bee. You know sometimes worker bees in hives decide they need a new queen bee. They don’t tell the queen, they just start secretly feeding babies royal jelly to make a queen. If the current queen finds out she’ll sting the infant queen to death. But if she doesn’t, the new queen is born and kicks out the old one. Anyway, Richard is like a worker bee who makes the new leader. But why is Richard so powerful and how did he get that way?

  8. Interesting analogy re Richard. I had been thinking of him like the Duke of Norfolk (bit of a Tudor fan here) – never on the throne, but awfully close to it and while loyal to the crown, always putting his own interests/family first.

    Then today I was thinking he’s a bit like Darth Vader. Works for the Emperor, but answers to a higher god.

    My theory is that Richard is an indigent – going back to the days of the statue. Charles and Ellie (and I think Christian is also wrapped up in this) are descendants of the Black Rock (as we know Charles is very interested in it, to prove his right over Ben I think, and he and Ellie definitely have some sort of relationship – my guess is siblings).

  9. @BTD GREGG: How could you “forget” that Kate and Cassidy crossed paths?? They showed the freakin’ flashback of it on last nights show. You picked up the solo cups sign but not a 10 second flashback? Strange dude.

  10. Richard strikes me as Rasputin-like. A No.2 doing his own mystical thing. His encounter w/ Locke in 1954 showed that Jacob was a factor back then, if not his boss, and that Richard didn’t seem to understand time travel yet.

    As bad as Ben is are we supposed to blame the Losties for how he turned out? At least hold Sayid and Jack responsible? Sayid tried to kill him and Jack’s refusal to save him forced Kate and Sawyer to take to the Others whereby he’ll “lose his innocence” and “never be the same again” (whatever that all means). If Jack saved Ben, he may have turned out to be quite different. Next week’s episode looks great.

    I loved the Miles-Hurley interchange. But I’m bummed a little if Ben didn’t remember Sayid when he was first captured in Season 2. I really liked the parallel that Sayid knew who Ben was when he was captured this season, and that Ben would have known Sayid when he was captured in S2.

  11. This may be a silly question (perhaps I’ve just missed the answer), but I thought the last time we saw Claire’s mother, until these recent episodes back in LA, was when she was in the hospital in Australia, close to brain dead. Christian even encouraged Claire to take measures to euthanize her in a way that wouldn’t be detected, since pulling the plug on her machines was illegal in Australia.

    Did we ever hear anything about her miraculous recovery? Is there any chance that this woman in the hotel isn’t really Claire’s mother but some sort of pretender who was trying to get Aaron?

  12. @BTD GREGG: How could you “forget” that Kate and Cassidy crossed paths?? They showed the freakin’ flashback of it on last nights show. You picked up the solo cups sign but not a 10 second flashback? Strange dude.

    Was that during the “Previously on Lost…” segment? Must have been. I frequenty flip past that part with my DVR.

    Just remember, everyone, my posts here at Kulturblog are worth exactly what you paid for them. (Unless you are on our Premium Plan(tm).)

  13. Haven’t watched the old seasons for a long time, but who says Ben didn’t remember Sayid? Must he tell the camera that he remembers him? Maybe if he told him he remembered him it would change Sayid’s actions in the future in a negative way.

    Also, wasn’t Hurley checking to see if his hand would disappear because Ben was dying? Why would that erase him? Ben isn’t his father or anything.

  14. John K.,

    Well, I don’t think the writers knew back in Season 2 that they were going to send Sayid back to 1977 to shoot young Ben.

    Also, wasn’t Hurley checking to see if his hand would disappear because Ben was dying? Why would that erase him? Ben isn’t his father or anything.

    Because Ben is the one who convinced all of them to go back in time. If Ben was dead, as a young boy, he would never be a man who tries to convince Hurley to go back to the island, therefore, Hurley shouldn’t exist on the island in 1977.

  15. I hope it’s still in the air whether Ben recognized Sayid or the other Losties when they captured him in S2. There’s no indication. Back then all the speculation was merely about whether he was an Other or not. Forget about trying to see if he knew them from his past (but their future).

    But Richard’s comment that he wouldn’t remember what happened (what? – everything or just the shooting) does seem like a convenient trick. Sort of like Darth Vader wiping C-3PO’s memory at the end of Episode III so it wouldn’t be a problem in Ep’s IV-VI.

  16. But I was once again very annoyed at how much these characters that kept getting screwed over by Ben bended over backwards to save his life!

    Maybe it’s because I am a mother, but I think Kate’s obsession with “saving Ben” has to do with her love for Aaron. She was letting Young Ben take Aaron’s place, and that’s why she wanted to save him. It had nothing to do with who he is going to become. Like Jack’s saving-people-complex, Kate couldn’t stand the thought of letting a little boy die.

  17. I thought the editing of the last scene was curious. Richard says that Ben won’t remember any of it, and then he goes into the temple. As soon as he goes in, we cut to a scene of Ben sleeping, his eyes look like they are in REM. He then wakes up.

    I thought it was intentionally made to look like the scene of Desmond in the future after Faraday visited him

    btw, where IS Faraday?

  18. Did you get the feeling that that woman was working for someone and actually trying to steal Aaron? That’s the feeling I got.

    Someone like…Ben? She already knew about the lawyer bit.

    But I once again see Locke, in the next episode, cater to whatever Ben tells him, EVEN AFTER Locke was strangled to death by this man.

    I don’t know. What’s been really interesting this season is how much the characters have changed.

    but who says Ben didn’t remember Sayid? Must he tell the camera that he remembers him?

    Richard says Ben won’t remember. But I have a suspicion that Ben does remember and that’s why Ben calls Sayid a killer.

    Also, wasn’t Hurley checking to see if his hand would disappear because Ben was dying? Why would that erase him? Ben isn’t his father or anything.

    But they wouldn’t be in 1977 without Ben.

    I think Kate’s obsession with “saving Ben” has to do with her love for Aaron.

    Yeah. That makes sense. Although the way Kate gave up Aaron really bugged me for the same reason. I had a hard time believing that.

  19. Probably my least favorite episode of this season (which, on the whole, has been pretty strong). Like others have said, lots of exposition in this episode, much of it poorly and lazily done. I think this may be partially either the writers or the network not trusting the viewers to do the work themselves, but it did make me roll my eyes several times throughout the episode. That aside, Kate episodes are usually not very good (this is probably because the character annoys me; or, to be more precise, because there’s a disconnect between the character and the actress playing her), so I didn’t have high expectations going in.

  20. I think that Ben did remember encountering the Losties when he was a child. When Richard is done with him in the Temple, Ben will be returned to Dharmaville, and will continue to have interactions with the Losties as a child — those encounters he will remember. Whether he remembers specifically being shot by Sayid is another matter.

    I find it significant that when the Others observed the crash of Oceanic 815 from their barracks (as shown in “A Tale of Two Cities” in Season 3), Ben showed no surprise at what he was seeing. In fact, if you review that scene again, you’ll see the Ben came out of the building and looked to the sky BEFORE the plane was visible. After the crash, Ben issued orders to Ethan and others as if he completely anticipated the crash and where the survivors would be, and had a plan in place.

    Also, the Others had detailed files on many of the survivors. Whether they acquired those files after the crash or before is an open question. But my guess, based on how quickly the Others responded to the crash itself, that they had compiled those personal histories long before the crash itself.

    So this begs the question of how much Ben knew of the time traveling Losties from his childhood, and what of those experiences he has “forgotten” as a result of Richard taking him to the Temple. I think as an adult he remembers quite a bit about his encounters with the Losties in the 1970s.

    The other possibility could be that he really did forget everything, but that Richard brought him up to speed on future events later, after Ben became the nominal leader of the Others. But as of now, we don’t know to what extent Richard knows — or will learn — about future events. My bet is that Ben knew all along what was going to happen in 2004…

  21. When Richard said Ben wouldn’t remember anything, I took it to mean he wouldn’t remember the actual healing in the temple or the experiences he had in there. Which doesn’t necessarily mean that he forgot being shot by Sayid… maybe Richard thinks that, but it isn’t true, or maybe they just want to make us think that.
    I also wouldn’t be surprised if Ben remembers Sayid but doesn’t let on. He is a liar. And a good one.

  22. I’m guessing Ben won’t remember being shot or the Losties and by the time he gets back from the temple the Losties will be gone from Dharmaville. That’s the cleanest way the story can go from here.

  23. I agree with Rusty. There’s a raging debate about this in the Lost internet world. People seem to think that Alpert’s statement “He’s not going to remember any of this” is pretty ambiguous. Also, people seem to really like the theory that Ben knew the Oceanic people all along and orchestrated everything with this knowledge. I don’t know. You’d need to go back and watch seasons 2 – 4 to see if that actually works.

    Incidentally (bad pun intended), the last episode of this season is titled, “The Incident.” My hypothesis is that “The incident” will cause the Oceanic folks to flash back to 2007/8 and rejoin the rest of their group/the Ajira people. Having them forever stuck in 1977 doesn’t really work for me. I’m about 98.7% that the incident will be the same one mentioned in the Swan Station orientation film, the one that causes the Hatch dwellers to need to push the button every 108 minutes.

  24. Regarding all the speculation on whether Ben will remember the Losties later… isn’t that technically a different Ben? I thought we discussed this earlier when talking about Rousseau. Ben from earlier seasons doesn’t remember the Losties from his childhood because they haven’t been there yet. And yet, if they travel forward to “present” day, I don’t know how Ben will perceive them.

    Gotta stop now before my head just asplodes.

  25. Ben showed no surprise at what he was seeing. In fact, if you review that scene again, you’ll see the Ben came out of the building and looked to the sky BEFORE the plane was visible. After the crash, Ben issued orders to Ethan and others as if he completely anticipated the crash and where the survivors would be, and had a plan in place.

    Also, the Others had detailed files on many of the survivors. Whether they acquired those files after the crash or before is an open question. But my guess, based on how quickly the Others responded to the crash itself, that they had compiled those personal histories long before the crash itself.

    Just throwing out a wild idea here that just came to me and it might be completely stupid. But what if those personal histories had been compiled long after the crash? I think we all assume that the 2004-ish date of the start of the show was the current day of the narrative. What if it is really 2010 or something and Ben has now gone back in time to the time of our story to try and change something? After the crash and everything that followed he would obviously be able to compile detailed information on each person as he has interacted with them.

    I don’t know if this works, but I do think we are operating under an interesting assumption that everything in the ‘future’ beyond what we’ve been shown has not yet happened.

  26. Agree re the Incident, Greg, and also think it’s what sends Charles off the island in what I think may have been the first donkey wheel turn in the modern era, followed by Ben’s and Locke’s.

    As for what Ben remembers, I still have a really hard time believing that Ben had knowledge of anyone before the plane crashed. If he was quick to bark out orders, it’s because it’s not the first time someone showed up (Danielle, Desmond, Henry Gale), and because he’s that kind of quick thinking leader.

    My belief – and I could be absolutely wrong of course – is that what happens in the revised 1977 doesn’t enter memories of people who lived it the first time until it happens, ie. if Ben had any interaction with the Losties as a child he’s only going to remember than now. Similar to what happened to Desmond – he didn’t remember Farraday until after Farraday went back in time and spoke to him at the hatch.

    As for what was erased, I think for now it’s Sayid and the gunshot because the writers needed to make sense of that. A kid may not remember a bunch of random grown ups his dad worked with, but he’d certainly remember a strange foreigner who shot him. It’s a neat solution to a problem that has yet to be solved – has the past been changed, or is the memory of it just different?

    The only loose end that the erasing could tie up are Ben’s two lies that have perplexed many fans because they seemed so unnecessary at the time, but now there’s the possibility that he was telling the truth when he said he was born on the island, and that his mother taught him to read.

  27. Just throwing out a wild idea here that just came to me and it might be completely stupid. But what if those personal histories had been compiled long after the crash? I think we all assume that the 2004-ish date of the start of the show was the current day of the narrative. What if it is really 2010 or something and Ben has now gone back in time to the time of our story to try and change something? After the crash and everything that followed he would obviously be able to compile detailed information on each person as he has interacted with them.

    That’s a very interesting idea John – the first time I’ve heard it in fact. The show wraps up in 2010 our time, so perhaps we’ll skip ahead a few years in the narrative to some sort of happy ending, and find that the crash was in fact redo of a past that originally had them all rescued within days of the crash.

  28. Agree re the Incident, Greg, and also think it’s what sends Charles off the island in what I think may have been the first donkey wheel turn in the modern era, followed by Ben’s and Locke’s.

    Good call, Jenny. I think that’s exactly right.

    Regarding all the speculation on whether Ben will remember the Losties later… isn’t that technically a different Ben? I thought we discussed this earlier when talking about Rousseau. Ben from earlier seasons doesn’t remember the Losties from his childhood because they haven’t been there yet. And yet, if they travel forward to “present” day, I don’t know how Ben will perceive them.

    Nah, I’m with Miles on this one. There has never not been a time when Jack, Sawyer, Kate, Miles, Jin and Hurley didn’t live with the DHARMA people in 1977. For those who were there, it always happened. What happened, happened. Time is not a straight line for the time travelers, but for everyone else, it’s chronological for everyone else. When Ben was a kid, this new DHARMA recruit named Kate Austin and Jim LaFleur took him across the perimeter, through the sonic fence and into the jungle, where the Others did some mystic juju to him that changed him forever. That’s part of his personal history. The only question is whether Ben himself remembers any of it.

    It will also be interesting to see what happens with Ben. Remember that he was living with the DHARMA folks at the time of the purge, so he’s got to return as a Hostile mole after his experience at the Temple. Presumably, he’s got to know something about his past to pull this off.

  29. Greg,

    Nice point about the last episode, and I agree with you. I’m looking forward to The Incident. 🙂

    What’s your thought about the next episode? We were given a premise that it will be judgment day for Ben. Should I get excited that he will actually get what’s coming to him? 🙂

  30. Dan, I don’t want to say too much because my speculation is based purely on the next week preview and the episode description listed released by ABC, and some people consider both of those to be spoilers.

    But I think it’s safe to say that there’s no way that the producers will kill off one of the greatest characters in TV history with a full season left to go.

  31. I think judgement is the judgment by the smoke monster. Probably something like what happened to Ecko. (First accepted by the smoke monster, then rejected) How that’ll turn out I don’t know. I do suspect we’ll learn the secrets of the temple of the smoke monster though.

  32. OK, you have no idea how stoked I am for tonight’s Lost. A Ben-centric episode that is rumored to explain a lot about the smoke monster. This could be the episode that really pushes forward the plot – on par to finding out that Widmore and Ben had an ongoing conflict.

  33. Hope you guys haven’t forgotten about me. I’ve been laid up all week with a kidney stone. In fact I watched last week’s episode in the hospital completely doped up on pain killers. I hope I’m more coherent for this week’s. A Ben episode! How cool is that?

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