LOST Season Six: LAX, Parts 1 and 2

Okay, I’ve been a faithful devotee of this show for years now. Even when it didn’t make sense, even when it seemed they were making it up as they went, even during the polar bear cage days of Season 3. But I have to confess: this premiere was a major letdown, at least on initial viewing. I’m holding out hope that they’ll right the ship here, but its hard not to be a little disappointed at this stage in the game.

I’m REALLY not digging the “flash sideways” storytelling device. With the phrase “flash sideways”, the producers are referring to the LAX storyline. (For a detailed explanation of the “flash sideways” from Damon and Carlton, click here.) It seems that for at least part of this season, we’ll find out what would have happened if Oceanic 815 had indeed never crashed. We saw several of these implications early in the episode, most notably Desmond never shipwrecks on the Island. (I still wonder about Farraday’s comment to him from last season: “The rules don’t apply to you.”) I definitely wasn’t expecting this and I don’t really care to see “what would’ve happened”. How are we supposed to interpret this storyline? Is it “real”? Another possibility? How can it possibly be reconciled with any of the previous 100+ hours of the series we’ve invested in to this point? Like I said, it’s hard not to be disappointed.

At the same time, we’re witnessing an “alternate reality” where the bomb detonated and our castaways are blown back to the Island present in 2007. Juliet has a tearful goodbye with Sawyer, but she imparts this one little piece of info (via Miles) as she exits: it worked. Is Juliet somehow aware of these alternate universes? Will she and Sawyer have a fortuitous encounter in this off-Island universe? If so, I’m betting we hear her utter the same words she spoke as she died in Sawyer’s arms: something about grabbing coffee and going dutch.

As for revelations in this episode, we had several.

  • We were correct to link the Man in Black with Smokey.
  • The Man in Black alludes to Richard and his “chains”. I’m pretty sure this is a reference to the Black Rock, a slave trading ship from the 1800s. I’m betting Richard was a slave on the ship, the same ship we saw coming to the Island in the Season Five finale.
  • We finally got to see the inside of the Temple. Lots of hieroglyphs. Lots of dudes with guns and turbans. And muddy water that drowns you and then saves you. Weird.
  • We finally got to see what was inside the guitar case. I’m wondering if all of this means Jacob has now inhabited Sayid’s body, in a way that’s similar to the Man in Black’s use of Locke.
  • The volcano ash that surrounded Jacob’s former cabin was explained (sort of). Seems it was intended to keep Smokey out.

I still have plenty of questions:

Why the blood on Jack’s collar when he looks in the mirror in the airplane bathroom?

How does Charlie know he’s “supposed” to die?

What is it that has changed Hurley’s luck? How is it that he thinks he’s the “luckiest man alive” in the alternate timeline?

Why can’t the show spring for some better CGI graphics?

Most of all, what happens in an “alternative reality” when Jacob & the Man in Black have been presumably blown to smithereens with the rest of the Island? Isn’t this whole thing about some age old argument / feud between these two? How can this be played out in the “new” timeline?

What about you? Your thoughts? Did you love it or were you disappointed?

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17 Responses to LOST Season Six: LAX, Parts 1 and 2

  1. Lane Widick says:

    Initial thoughts:

    I’m intrigued by the new hatred Sawyer has for Jack. Its eerily similar to the relationship between the man in black and Jacob. I wonder if the island has not chosen the two of them to replace Richard and Jacob. It seemed that Jack was very aware of something on the plane, and the same goes for Sawyer. Just a thought, and probably a stupid one at best.

    Was Jack’s father’s coffin destined to go the island, regardless of whether they crashed or not? If the island is at the bottom of the ocean, does that mean he’s swimming around? I think we’ll see in the flash sideways that the coffin will bring Jack to the island, somehow.

    I want to know who this Kung Fu master is, and his dorky sidekick. They do not go together at all.

    Juliet had to have said what she did to Sawyer so he could be her constant perhaps?

    It seems as if Locke/Man in Black is hell bent on getting off the island, and will do anything he can to accomplish this. Apparently, he can’t be killed, or at least not with bullets.

    I still don’t think the rules apply to Desmond. His mysterious disappearance on the plane is just like the past. And, couple that with the fact that no one else saw him but Jack. Maybe it was Christian trying to be an apparition to Jack, to jiggle his mind a bit.

    These are all stupid theories, and most probably won’t pan out.

    I was rather confused by the whole flash sideways as well, but I can’t help but think they are poignant enough to tie into the grand story line. It really just seemed to drag, and where as in the past few episodes I was hooked in like a guy with an iv drip, last night I found myself distracted while watching it. I have confidence it will get better.

    • Jason says:

      I agree with you; I’m worried about what Island Sawyer might do to Island Jack. At the end of the episode last night, after Sawyer said he wouldn’t kill Jack but that he wanted him to suffer, I wondered if Sawyer might try to do something to Kate…just to spite Jack. That’d be pretty low, even for Sawyer. I hope that doesn’t happen.

      And Hurley was wearing a red shirt during the entire episode, which isn’t a good sign. The red shirts usually die, as we saw with Juliet in last year’s finale.

  2. Lane Widick says:

    Oh yeah, and it seems like Hurley is now the hero…just my 2 cents.

  3. greg says:

    I read something recently that Cuse/Lindelof said that different timelines/realities would all come together pretty quickly, so I think this is a short term thing. However, I may have misread something and I have no idea where I read it.

    My primary confusion was the change in pre-flight lives in the ‘reset’ timeline. Several things were different – Hurley claims to be lucky, Desmond and Jack don’t recognize each other (despite just having encountered one another in Australia, at least prior to the original flight 815), Shannon is a no-show. I’m not yet sure what to make of that.

    Favorite line of the episode by Hurley:

    Jacob: “Because I died an hour ago.”

    Hurley: “Sorry dude, that sucks.”

    • Jason says:

      I have to wonder if Claire is even pregnant in the LA timeline / reality. Could we tell from her scene?

      Maybe Jack “remembers” Desmond from their nighttime jogging convo on the bleachers. What’s weird is that Jack and Desmond don’t recognize each other on the plane, but in the S2 premiere, when Des is holding a gun to Locke’s head, Jack immediately recognizes him. Strange.

  4. greg says:

    okay, after reading some of the link above, I see what they’re saying about pre-flight lives. I was thinking along those same lines.

  5. Dylan says:

    Whoa Jason! I am completely surprised that you didn’t like this episode! How could you dislike something that is so carefully and methodically put together that delves into such complex issues of destiny, consequences of our actions, and ultimate free will? How could you not like seeing Boone, Charlie, and real Locke again? I was riveted for every reboot timeline scene. Isn’t it fascinating to see these characters still interact without crashing on the island? Like their lives were always meant to intersect, that these relationships matter, the same way that the relationships in our own lives matter and have an impact beyond the circumstances in which we meet.

    I thought the Flocke/MIB/smokey scenes were incredible, especially his interactions with Ben and then Richard. My favorite scene of the show was Flocke explaining the sadness of the real Locke’s life to Ben. It totally captured things that a lot of the fans have been discussing. The Jack/Sawyer scenes were intense. I am a little sad that in both timelines, it looks like we’re going back to old school jerk Sawyer, cause I liked the redeemed/leader Sawyer, but hopefully he’ll redeem himself again.

    I’m still trying to process everything that happened (since there was a ton of information downloaded on us) and I’ll need to watch it again. But, remember how people didn’t like the time travel stuff at first last season, but then finally accepted it and saw by the end of the season how if fit the narrative framework of the whole show and how brilliant it was? I think the parallel realities will be similar. My advice to you would just be to relax, trust the writers (they’ve gotten us this far), enjoy the characters and interactions, don’t worry about the plot too much and when/how the timelines will merge, but believe that it will all (or at least somewhat) make sense in the end. For now, just enjoy the ride. It’s our LAST chance to enjoy the ride!

    • Jason says:

      I guess at this stage of the game, I’m more interested in the storyline I’ve invested in for five seasons and 100+ episodes; not some “parallel reality” or what might have happened if 815 never crashed. I hear what you’re saying about how cool it is to see how their lives would’ve intersected anyway (sort of the “universal self-correction” idea posited by Desmond and Charlie back in the day), but I’m just not interested in that. At least not yet.

      But, as I’ve thought about it more over the course of the day, the idea has grown on me. A little. At the very least, it opens up some interesting narrative possibilities. But I’m still having a hard time with it. Guess I just need to roll with it.

  6. Dylan says:

    Oh and I forgot one. Enjoy the ACTING! Terry O’Quinn was BRILLIANT contrasting the serene and humble paralyzed John Locke, with a very menacing and scary MIB. Now that he finally knows he’s playing a different character, he is really REALLY good at it. He may play a better villain than Michael Emerson did.

  7. greg says:

    “Locke” wants to go home. I want to know where home is.

    • Jason says:

      Yeah, me too. I’m wondering if Flocke isn’t going to end up being the good guy in the end. I know he went all medieval on Bram, but before he did, he made the comment that Bram was “free” now that he wouldn’t have to protect Jacob. Maybe we’ll end up understanding Smokey as something of a benevolent figure.

      I dunno. Maybe not. This show is infuriating. And fascinating.

  8. Jason says:

    I’m starting to reconsider the thought that Jacob has embodied Sayid now. If the same “rules” apply to Jacob as MIB, then Jacob can’t be in Sayid’s body. As we’ve seen, MIB isn’t inhabiting Locke’s body, he’s just taken his “form” or whatever. But Sayid seems to have been raised from the dead / healed, which would be something different altogether. Maybe what we’re seeing with Sayid is the same thing that happened to young Ben when Sayid shot him and Kate and Sawyer brought him to Richard. Richard same something cryptic before taking Ben into the temple (“This will change him. He’ll always be one of us.”); I’m thinking the same thing is happening to Sayid now.

    Does this make sense?

  9. Tara says:

    I just now watched. Sorta wish I could wait until the season is over, then watch them all back to back. For me the timeline flash forwards, flash backwards, flash sideways have been exhausting. But I’m hooked and committed and the writers know that.

    My questions:

    I’ve wondered if there is any symbolism in flight 316 and John 3:16?

    Richard’s eyeliner seems to have faded while MIB John was in the foot and hardly noticeable when MIB knocked him out?

    Why isn’t dead Locke’s body decomposed by now?

    Was the carving in the guitar case of an Egyptian letter?

    I really thought dead Locke would come back to life as evil Locke paraded off with Richard on his back.

    Was Hurley wearing red at the end of last season?

    Smokey creeps me out.

    • Jason says:

      Seems like the producers came out and said last year that the flight number was a specific reference to John 3.16. If you’ll remember, that was the same episode where Ben impressively recalls the Biblical story of Thomas and his doubts. Guess somebody went to Dharma Sunday School. That little tale is an important part of what gets Jack back to the Island as a new “man of faith”.

      The Egyptian carving is called an “ankh”. It’s an Egyptian sign of eternal life. Another reference to the afterlife that the producers have teased us with.

      I’m guessing the Island isn’t done with dead Locke yet.

      And I can’t remember if Hurley was wearing red at the end of last season. I’m guessing he had that shirt on under his Dharma jump suit. I just hope he doesn’t die.

  10. Dylan says:

    Good call Jason on Sayid not being Jacob. That makes sense. Plus Jacob is technically dead. It almost seems like it would be cheating if he could just take someone else’s form once he died.

  11. Tara says:

    My brain is fried. Someone needs to write a “LOST FOR DUMMIES – Everything you wanted to figure out, but couldn’t” book! Seriously – someone could make a fortune! I’d buy one.

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