Wednesday, January 21, 2009

“There’s no place like home.” Dorothy famously uttered the phrase in The Wizard of Oz, and it’s also the name of last night’s episode. The difference is that Dorothy realized everything she needed was right where she left it before the tornado hit. The Oceanic Six, on the other hand, are conflicted and don’t all appear to be thrilled about being “found.” And as I’ll explain below, several of them come to realize that everything they needed was actually back on the island. Perhaps they may have been better off as castaways.

Lost 4x12: There's No Place Like Home

Jack is finally clued in to the show’s worst-kept secret, Hurley has a rockin’ luau, Sun owns Mr. Paik’s company and Mr. Paik gets ‘owned’ by her too, Sayid gets a blast from the past, On-Island Alpert finally makes an appearance this season, the freighter is raring to blow, Daniel goes from nerd to hero, Ben surrenders, and Jim’s proposal to Pam gets upstaged by Andy…oh wait - scratch that last one.

Full explanation after the jump.

Off The Island:

The episode begins on the Coast Guard cargo plane flying the Oceanic Six to Hawaii. An Oceanic representative, Ms. Decker, is explaining that there will be a press conference. Why would an airline want or need to use a military flight to return them to Hawaii? The pilot seemed to realize there was something special about the “cargo.” They land at military facility near Honolulu. (Barbers Point Coast Guard Air Station.)

Family members are there to meet them. Mr. & Mrs. Paik, Hurley’s mom & dad, Jack’s mom; but no one’s there for Sayid, Kate or Aaron.

The press conference reveals the story that after the plane crashed in the water, they drifted with life vests and seat cushions to an uninhabited island in Indonesia, and had the good fortune of having a pallet of food and supplies wash up on shore during a typhoon. They later made it to a nearby island and the town of Manukangga, where some fisherman took a photo of them arriving on shore. (While I guess it’s possible, what are the odds that fishermen would be carrying around their camera on a beach?) Their story states that everyone else either died in the crash or in the ocean before making it to the island.

The Oceanic rep tells Sayid that Noor (Nadia) Abed Jazeem, who was not on the list, was there to see him. (Was this a reference to Ben’s and Jacob’s various lists and the “good people” being on the list?) Nadia has made her way to Sayid. And Sayid, the romantic, is finally happy again. She was there with a police officer however, so it seems she’s there with protection or perhaps in custody – the CIA used her as a bargaining tool for Sayid’s loyalty at one point, though she was later supposed to be working as a lab tech in California, so it’s not clear why she’d need protection at this point.

Sun visits her dad at the office. Mr. Paik’s a bit freaked out about something to do with five banks. We find out that Sun has used her settlement from Oceanic to buy a controlling stake in Paik Heavy Industries. She’s going to call the shots now, as a payback for Mr. Paik’s place in Jin’s death.

Exactly how much $$$ could and the survivors and Oceanic have settled for – even if she received a payout for Jin as well? Isn’t Paik’s company a billion dollar enterprise? Could Sun being among the Oceanic Six be a part of the larger plot for control of the island? Perhaps she’s being bankrolled in order to throw off the power balance for control. She blamed her father as one of two people responsible for Jin’s death. Who is the other? Widmore? Ben? Sun herself? I’m holding out hope that she’s using his death metaphorically and Jin’s still alive on the island.

Next we see Hurley get home with a bag of food from Mr. Cluck’s Chicken Shack, the restaurant he bought – the one that was destroyed by the meteorite. The front door is open, and there’s a coconut on the floor. Next, we hear whispers – a clever similarity by the writers to the island’s whispers. His parents are throwing him a party – a luau, actually. His dad shows him the car they’d been restoring together, a project he finished. But Hurley bolts when he realizes the car’s odometer is at 48,151.6 and the trip meter is at 234.2. Are all of these things together too much of a similarity? Is his father trying to push him mentally over the edge, like when he paid the psychic to freak him out?

This scene contains the line of the night: Hurley was holding the statue, ready to hit whoever was whispering, and his mother was appalled and exclaimed, “Jesus Christ is not a weapon!”

Finally, we’re at Jack’s father’s memorial. Kate and Aaron are there, as is Hurley. But the real surprise is a visit from Claire’s mother. Claire’s mother dropped the ‘s-bomb’ – “sister” – on Jack, and revealed Christian was also Claire’s father. Tears began to flow. If the pills on the island weren’t the start of his spiral toward addiction, this news likely will be. Claire’s mother tells Kate how beautiful her baby is. Did she see similarities to Claire in Aaron?

Question: How exactly was Claire’s mother – who was on her deathbed in a coma – make it to Christian’s memorial service? When Christian visited Claire’s mom in Australia, he told Claire that she didn’t have to live like that. Perhaps the island’s magic helped her recover, even though Claire didn’t take Christian up on his offer.

On The Island:

Jack listens to the radio and hears Keamy’s team say “employ the Orchid” and “secondary protocol,” none of which means anything to him. But Daniel gets a little twitchy as he and Charlotte flip thru his marble composition notebook. Besides the phrases “Time Like Factors” and “Space Like Factor,” there is a large DHARMA Orchid logo as well. He tells them all they need to get off the island right away.

After meeting in the jungle, Jack and Sawyer set out to try and rescue Hurley. The interchange between them is pretty cool since it seems like they’re swapping places. Jack yells out “sonuvabitch!,” Sawyer’s catchphrase. And Sawyer tells Jack, “you don’t get to die alone”, reminiscent of Jack’s “live together die alone” speech. When they’re walking through the jungle, Sawyer asks him about the blood on his shirt, and Jack replies, “I’m separating.” Sure, it’s a term to describe his surgical wound coming apart, but there’s something more to that statement. (Anyone care to help me out with that?)

Ben, Locke and Hurley continue their mission to the Orchid Station. Ben finds a box he’d buried, in which there was a tin containing 15-year old crackers (Hurley eats them), a rope, a leather pack, and a mirror. He uses the mirror to send signals to the top of the mountain. He receives signals back. Was he communicating with Apert’s team at the Temple, Jacob, someone else?

Ben’s mirror had printing on the back and what looked like the crosshairs of a gun’s scope. I’m sure some intrepid bloggers have already isolated and transcribed what’s on there, but I’m not any closer, even with a hi-res screen-grab.


(pic credit:

After Ben sends his mirror message, they set out for the Orchid. Ben stops them in the jungle as they approach it. He realizes Keamy and team are already at the Station and Ben says they’re there for him. Locke confronts Ben about this and he replies, “I wasn’t being entirely truthful.” Locke retorts, “When have you ever been entirely truthful?” Locke’s not sure what to do next, but Ben’s confident. “When are you going to realize I always have a plan?”

Ben gives Locke the instructions on how to get into the Orchid Station and he goes to distract them. Instead, he walks right up to them and surrenders. “My name is Benjamin Linus. I believe you’re looking for me?” Keamy pistol whips him with his gun.

Question: Locke knows how to get into the station. But what’s he supposed to do once he takes that elevator down there? Ben hasn’t clued him in about anything.

On The Freighter:

Faraday’s first group of islanders makes it to the freighter, including Sun, Jin and Aaron. This is the first time they’re seeing Michael and you could cut the tension with a knife.

Michael repaired the engines and they start out toward the island with the freighter. But there’s a radio signal interfering with the sonar. Desmond goes to look for the source, and they find a room filled with C4 explosives. I guess we know what that arm thingy on Keamy is for now.

Sun makes her way up to the deck and we have to wait 2 weeks for the answers to what happens. Though we can at least be confident that Sun and Aaron made it off the island safely.

So, the episode was plot-heavy, mythology-lite one. But it’s probably not fair to judge it since we’ve only seen what is 1/3 of the finale episode. What did you think? Hit me up with some comments below.

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