LOST: “This Place is Death”

Things are really moving now, both on and off the island.

Spoilers from tonight’s episode after the break.

Links and miscellanea:

  • Jeopardy Ken Jennings has some thoughts at his blog on this season’s Lost and whether the writers are taking full advantage of the possibilities that time travel presents.
  • ABC has produced some humorous videos they are calling “Lost Untangled” and posting them on the official website. Others have pointed out that the videos aren’t exactly original in execution.
  • Daniel Dae Kim (“Jin”) has some things to say about the monster, suggesting that we’re about to find a whole lot more about it.
  • Daniel Dae Kim is also featured prominently in the most recent video podcast.
  • Truly the man of the hour (week) TV Guide also has an interview with Kim Interesting side note: Kim will be starring in The King and I in London in June.
  • TV Guide’s Mega Buzz has a tip from the writers that it’s not who left the island, but when and how they left that makes returning the Oceanic Six so crucial. So we can all stop speculating about Walt and Michael, et al., needing to also be brought back.
  • Michael Emerson (“Ben”) is happy that the writers set an end date for the show, calling it a “bold stroke.”
  • Here’s a pretty funny interview with Emerson at The Daily Beast. My favorite bit: “Q: On what kind of sitcom would you like to guest star? A: I think Ben and John Locke [from Lost] should be roommates in Brooklyn. And then just have wacky adventures.” And here’s one with Elizabeth Mitchell (“Juliet”).

Observations and speculations:

  • This was a strong episode, even though a couple of the big reveals (i.e., Eloise Hawking is Faraday’s mother, Charlotte spent time on the island as a child) were not so surprising to those who have been following closely.
  • Ji Yeon, Jin and Sun’s child, may yet play a larger role in the story. If my theory I introduced last week has anything to it, then the fact that Ji Yeon was conceived on the island might have significance to the Others, even if Ben hasn’t realized it yet.
  • I found Jin’s t-shirt, with the tiny red star slightly off center on the back, to be distracting. Have we seen this shirt before?
  • We now have the basic backstory behind Rousseau and her people. They arrived at the island when their vessel was disabled and followed the transmission of the numbers. Monstead lost his arms when he was pulled underground by the Smoke Monster and the other members of the crew tried to pull back. After they entered the Temple, Rousseau (who did not go into the Temple) became convinced that the members of the French research team had become “sick.” (This is the sickness that Rousseau talked about in season 1.) Ultimately, Rousseau was responsible for killing them all.
  • It’s interesting to review what Rousseau said about this incident in season 1 (“Solitary,” episode 1.9). The context: Sayid has taken off on a solo journey to explore the island, partially out of shame for torturing Sawyer, and finds a cable on the beach that leads into the jungle. While in the jungle, he hears whispers, then is captured by a Crazy French Woman, who suspects him of being an Other and tortures him to find out what has happened to Alex. At one point, he tries to escape by grabbing a gun and pointing at her. The following exchange takes place:

    SAYID: Please, I don’t wish to hurt you.

    DANIELLE: You already have.

    SAYID: Don’t.

    [Sayid fires, but nothing happens.]

    DANIELLE: The firing pin has been removed. Robert didn’t notice it was missing, either — when I shot him.

    SAYID: But you loved him.

    DANIELLE: He was sick.

    SAYID: Sick?

    DANIELLE: It took them, one after the other. I had no choice. They were already lost.

    SAYID: You killed them.

    DANIELLE: What would have happened if we were rescued? I couldn’t let that happen. I won’t.

    [Sayid throws the rifle down.]

  • We also learned about the French research party in the season 1 finale “Exodus,” where Danielle told the Flight 815 survivors: “Our ship went aground on this island 16 years ago. There were 6 of us — my team, 6. At that time I was already 7 months pregnant. I delivered the infant myself. The baby and I were together for only 1 week when I saw black smoke — a pillar of black smoke 5 kilometers inland. That night they came — they came and took her — Alex. They took my baby. And now, they’re coming again. They’re coming for all of you.”
  • I liked the line from the tall, blond Frenchman (Montand): “First a boat, then a helicopter. Next thing you know he’ll be talking about a submarine.”
  • It’s probably not worth mentioning that the men in the French research team all look like male fashion models. So I won’t mention it.
  • This was our first sighting of the Smoke Monster this season. Smokey took offense at Nadine, doing her the way he did the Pilot and Mr. Eko.
  • This was also our first ever sighting of The Temple. The Temple appears to date from what I’ll call the island’s “paleolithic” era (this is distinguishable from the ancient Classical era of giant, four-toed statues). On the temple there are vaguely Egyptian-looking glyphs of the sort that are seen a few other places on the island—on the stone chamber beneath the Orchid Station and on the old stone door in the secret chamber underneath Ben’s bungalow in the Other/DHARMA’s barracks.
  • In season one, Danielle commented about the “dark territory” near the Black Rock and said, “This is where it all began — where my team got infected — where Montand lost his arm. We must move quickly.” Now we know in gruesome detail exactly how Montand lost his arm, but we also know that the Temple is in what Danielle refers to as “dark territory” and near the old trading ship.
  • Why would Smokey have been dragging Montand into the Temple if it is truly a security system meant to protect the Temple (as Robert suggests)? Wouldn’t it be better to drag folks away from the Temple?
  • When Jin flashes again, he is at a slightly later time. As he comes to the beach where Danielle and the science expedition have made their camp, we see the beginnings of Danielle’s future survivalist bunker, the one Sayid is taken to in the episode “Solitary.” There is a box of explosives taken from the Black Rock, no doubt retrieved shortly after Montand’s dismemberment. We also see the music box that Danielle asks Sayid to fix, the one that she said was an anniversary gift from Robert and brought her comfort during her first few years on the island. We also see Lacombe’s violin.
  • As Jin explores further, he sees the dead corpses of Brennan and Lacombe, which are attracting flies. Danielle seems to have already begun executing them.
  • Danielle believes that the men were “changed” and became “sick” when the went into the Temple. Perhaps the “sickness” has to do with being spiritually inculcated into the island’s primative religion. Maybe this is what makes the Others so brutal and inscrutable to outsiders. If this is the sickness, then Locke is very sick at this point.
  • Best Miles line of the episode: “Um…He’s Korean. I’m from Encino.”
  • So how, exactly, does Charlotte know Korean, anyway? Will we ever find out? At least we never had to hear her speak Klingon.
  • The build-up to the visit with Ms. Hawking was kind of anti-climatic. Ben even uses the non-gender-specific “them” to refer to her early in the episode to keep us in the dark about who he’s leading Sun toward, even though it seems pretty obvious, just as it was obvious about three episodes that Ms. Hawking is Faraday’s mother.
  • Charlotte utters the episode’s title (“this place is death”) when she tries to persuade Jin to keep Locke from bringing Sun back to the island, also foretelling her own death.
  • When Ben tells Jack and Sun that he’s had to do a lot to keep them safe, he sound very convincing. I don’t think he’s lying. But I don’t think he’s being totally truthful, either. I think he has his own motives for protecting Sun, Jack and the other Oceanic 6 members: he knows that returning them to the island is part of Jacob’s plan. He’s not at all concerned about their personal safety.
  • Charlotte lapses into the same state that Faraday’s former research assistant, Theresa Spenser. Sometimes she’s lucid, but other times she’s unaware of how old she is, or where she is. Unlike Theresa, she’s not at all stable and is fading fast.
  • Best Sawyer line (after Juliet comments on how fortunate the Orchid Station is around, then—flash!—it disappears): “You just had to say something.”
  • The well also appears to be from the paleolithic era, though there are no glyphs on it.
  • Charlotte’s death soliloquy reveals a few key facts. First, her family was part of the DHARMA Initiative, though her mother left and tried to convince Charlotte that the whole thing never happened. Her father stayed behind. This was way Charlotte became an anthropologist—to find the island. This explains the excitement Charlotte had when we first saw her at an anthropological site in the Sahara, uncovering a polar bear skeleton and a DHARMA bear collar. We also find out that Faraday was on the island, warning her to never come back and foretelling her death.
  • Rebecca Mader deserves mad props for her performance this season. She looked like hell (even though she’s a very attractive person), and her part had to have been challenging. I guess now she’s nothing more than a possible recurring walking dead person.
  • When the flash happens and the well disappears (with Locke beneath it) Sawyer is left with a rope sticking from the ground. This tells us that anything the Left Behinders are in direct contact with time-skips with them. This helps explain why the boats that the Left Behinders were paddling didn’t disappear when the flashes happened last week.
  • Charlotte’s last words: “I’m not allowed to have chocolate before dinner.” Is this an allusion to something, maybe?
  • Locke once again sees Christian Shepard (or, at least, something assuming the form of Christian). I was completely convinced that this is not, in fact, Christian at all, but Jacob assuming Christian’s image. But then, at the end of the scene, he says, “Say hello to my son” and then there’s a cut to a shot of Jack. On the other hand, maybe this is a misdirection and the being using Christian’s form is actually the father to someone else (Ben, maybe?). It also may be relevant that Christian-person says he can’t help Locke. This may be because he does not have a tangible, corporeal body at all. Hmm. This is pretty near the top of my list of things I want explained: what’s up with the walking dead?
  • Chirstian-person also tells Locke that he was supposed to move the island, not Ben, and that the Frozen Donkey Wheel has “slipped of its axis.” He also makes it clear that Locke will have to sacrifice his life for the cause (whatever the cause is).
  • I guess we’ll find out next week whether Locke’s turn at the wheel corrected things for now and stopped the nosebleeds. I still think it will take the O6′s return for everything to get back to “normal.”
  • Meanwhile, back at Ms. Hawking’s church, Ben does a masterful job of manipulating Sun and committing her to return to the island. One of his half-truths is revealed when he tells Jack that although he said Locke never came to see him, he went to Locke. (He’s a sneaky one, that Ben.)
  • One third of the Oceanic Six is not a very good success rate, but it was the best that could be done “on such short notice.” Those remaining four (Sayid, Hurley, Kate and Aaron) seem pretty adamant about not following Ben, though. Ms. Hawking says it will “have to do for now.”

Most of this episode took place on the island, which might be why I enjoyed it so much. Right now, the island is where most of the exciting things are happening.

Anyone have any good insights or nascent theories after watching “This Place is Death”? If so, please share.

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73 thoughts on “LOST: “This Place is Death”

  1. I loved hearing Sun speaking with her daughter. They are so cute. The Korean has been perfect on the show, but I must say that Charlotte might as well have been speaking Klingon since her accent made her unintellegible.

  2. I’m wondering if Desmond has to return to the island, or just the six. It seems that way, since he kept telling Penny he’d be right back.

    Thanks for posting Danielle’s exposition from season 1. I was hoping they’d get back to her, but couldn’t remember much of what she said about the sickness.

    I’m really wondering about the nature of the island. The characters who would have good reason to know seem evenly split about whether it’s a malignant force or a wonderful thing.

  3. I really appreciated Christian Sheppard’s remark to Locke about Ben, “since when did listening to him get you any good?” Finally, someone willing to say it. I don’t blame the actor (Emerson). I blame the writers. There have been so many opportunities where Ben should have been taken out. The best one would have been where Jack was beating the crap out of him at the end of Season Three. That should have been the end of Ben.

    I figured Sun would have been smarter than to allow Ben to manipulate her as he did. And looking ahead at next week’s episode, it seems that an intractable Kate gets bamboozled yet again. Even Hurley supposedly finally caves.

    I’m sorry to see Charlotte go. But I love her revelations. We’ll be seeing more of Daniel for sure. Note that out of everyone with that group unstuck in time, only he and Jin and Locke have not been getting nose bleeds. But him especially, since he’s been to the island before, isn’t that interesting…

  4. Charlotte probably learned Korean from Jin when she was a little girl at the Dharma camp. Wasn’t there a picture or video floating around with Jin wearing Dharma coveralls?

  5. I really appreciated Christian Sheppard’s remark to Locke about Ben, “since when did listening to him get you any good?” Finally, someone willing to say it. I don’t blame the actor (Emerson). I blame the writers. There have been so many opportunities where Ben should have been taken out. The best one would have been where Jack was beating the crap out of him at the end of Season Three. That should have been the end of Ben.

    Wow, Dan. I couldn’t disagree more. Ben has been one of the most compelling characters almost from the start. I never get tired of watching Michael Emerson do his thing, and I don’t have any complaints with the writing of his character.

  6. Charlotte probably learned Korean from Jin when she was a little girl at the Dharma camp. Wasn’t there a picture or video floating around with Jin wearing Dharma coveralls?

    This one is completely new to me. Then again, there are many dark corners of Lost-fandom where I have never dared to venture.

  7. The other intriguing part of Charlotte’s deathbed ramblings was a reference to an Asian associated with her mother or father. I didn’t catch which though, and it makes a big difference – on the island we have Candle & family, and off island we have the Paiks, and Jin’s family. And potentially Miles in the mix. So who was Charlotte talking to, and how might they all be related? Obviously the person was important enough that she ended up learning Korean. I had always thought she was multi-lingual, but now that it’s down to just two languages, it’s that much more significant.

    Funniest moment: Sayid and Kate both leaving while Sun had a gun pointed at Ben.

    Big moment (for me!): Ben’s not being surprised to see Desmond, but being very surprised to hear that Daniel and Ellie are related. You could almost see the recalculations going on in his head with this new information. Note that this might very well be the first time that Ben didn’t know something before everyone else.

  8. Two small notes: we did know that Charlotte understood Korean; it came up before.

    Also, I agree that Michael Emerson is one of the very best actors on the show (or anywhere for that matter). The key point in the interaction between Locke and Christian was perhaps not that Locke was supposed to turn the wheel, but that Ben *wasn’t.*

    Oh yes (so much to think about) – I for one was a bit disappointed with Danielle’s story. It really didn’t tell us anything new; just reinforced the story she’s told in pieces over the seasons. The biggest question is still unanswered: who were her team, and what were they doing there?

  9. A few thoughts. First off I think this was a huge episode. Probably pivotal for the season.

    Important Reveals:

    1. the temple. We never knew about this before.
    2. Ben didn’t know Hawking was Faraday’s mom. Important considering who Faraday was working for.
    3. the French team. These were no normal scientists. (The guns? – the similarity to the attack team the Losties encountered?) While not obvious I think they worked for Widmore.
    4. we know how the Island was found. (But by whom? Dharma? Widmore?)

    Best Moments

    1. Ben losing his temper while everyone talked about killing him. While Ben is running his own game and confuses literalism with honesty it’s also clear he honestly thinks he’s looking out for everyone.
    2. Rope in the ground.
    3. Sawyer’s quip, “you just had to say something.”

    Important Likely Reveals

    1. the remaining Losties are probably back around the time Dharma takes over the island. I suspect Charlotte learned Korean from Jin. And that’s why Faraday was back in the past. The question is then when Locke is.

    2. Faraday’s mom is not an other.

    3. The Others are “converted” by something in the temple which leads to their zealotry.

    4. Contra what some say, the ghosts aren’t purely Jacob but have some connection to the real people. (Thus the “say hello to my son.”)

  10. 2. Faraday’s mom is not an other.

    I don’t follow. Why not?

    4. Contra what some say, the ghosts aren’t purely Jacob but have some connection to the real people. (Thus the “say hello to my son.”)

    I think you’re probably right about this. Whatever the thing-that-looks-like-Christian is, it’s probably not Jacob. Remember (as I was just reminded) that Locke asked Christian if he was Jacob when Locke saw him with Claire and Christian replied, “No, but I can speak for him.”

  11. Seems to me that Ben hasn’t accepted his demotion. I think everything he’s been doing, from tricking Locke into staying on the IIsland to gather the O6, is a scheme to get back in Jacob’s/the Island’s good graces and reclaim leadership of the Others.

    Anyone else think we may find out that Ben killed Locke?

  12. Seems to me that Ben hasn’t accepted his demotion. I think everything he’s been doing, from tricking Locke into staying on the Island to gathering the O6, is a scheme to get back in Jacob’s/the Island’s good graces and reclaim leadership of the Others.

  13. persuade Jin to keep Locke from bringing Sun back to the island

    More precise, “keep Locke from bringing her back…” We assume that “her” is Sun, but could it be Ji Yeon? or Hawking? Is this a trick like the “Not supposed to raise him” and “don’t bring him back”? (which we think refer to Aaron but could mean Locke or Ben or…)

    “say hello to my son.”

    If Christian-person is actually Jacob, could “his” son be Aaron?

    Best Line: When Charlotte remembers Faraday as “a crazy, scary man.”

  14. Wow, Greg, are you time traveling? You responded to my comment before I posted it!

    Sorry ’bout that. I had a typo and couldn’t edit, so I deleted and reposted before I realized you had responded.

  15. Do we know whether Ben even knows who Faraday is? I mean, I’m sure we’ll find out that he does, just because he knows everyone and Faraday’s been around, but the two never met since Faraday came in with the Freighties, did they?

  16. Could Daniel and Charlotte be related? Brother and sister, maybe? I can’t recall whether Daniel said that he Charlotte or that he was in love with Charlotte.

  17. I think Ben kills Locke following a heated exchange in which Locke grills Ben about misleading him. Ben looks out only for himself.

  18. we know how the Island was found.

    We do?

    Where is Danielle now? Alive and independent on the island? Or did something happen to her along the way that I’ve forgotten?

    When was Jin on the Island that Charlotte could have learned Korean? Or is that something we haven’t seen yet?

  19. re the Temple – it’s the first time we’ve seen it, but not the first we’ve heard of it. In the heat of the freighter attack, Ben sent his people and importantly, Alex there as he thought it was the safest place on the island. The Others seem to know how to tame smokey.

    re the idea that Faraday’s mom is not an Other – I also question that statement, as it seems obvious that Eloise is Ellie, who we’ve seen on the island in 1954.

    Further, I think that Ellie/Eloise, Charles and Christian are siblings, all trying to return to the island in their own ways, and that the future of the island rests in their children (which Christian figured out, Ellie has an idea about, and Charles has yet to accept).

    I think Ben’s surprise at Eloise being Faraday’s mother set his mind racing – he knows a lot, but clearly not everything. I don’t think there’s a conflict between Faraday being hired by Widmore but being Eloise’s mother – as I said, I think they are siblings, likely with a typical sibling relationship. They might not be working together, but they likely aren’t working against each other either.

  20. Do we know whether Ben even knows who Faraday is? I mean, I’m sure we’ll find out that he does, just because he knows everyone and Faraday’s been around, but the two never met since Faraday came in with the Freighties, did they?

    I’m pretty sure Ben knows all about Daniel. I can’t recall if the two were ever together, but I know he knew everything about Charlotte at the time (some of) the Freighter folk were being marched through the jungle with Ben and Locke’s faction.

    Where is Danielle now? Alive and independent on the island? Or did something happen to her along the way that I’ve forgotten?

    Danielle was killed in an ambush along with Karl when Keamy and his mercs captured Alex. They were on their way to The Temple (at Ben’s insistence) at the time.

  21. Also, recall that Michael was Ben’s spy on the Freighter and would have told Ben about Daniel, if nothing else. I agree that it’s pretty significant that Ben didn’t know who Daniel’s mother is. Someone must have been keeping that information from him.

  22. Whoops. How the island was found was in the preview for next week. My bad.

    Regarding Faraday’s mom not being an Other. Now that I think about it more I think I’m mistaken on that.

    I don’t think the Others know how to tame the smoke monster rather than be found acceptable to the smoke monster (ala Locke). I think we saw that with Ecko as well. (Although I’m still pissed about his death)

    BTW – is it just me or do characters drop like flies on this show?

  23. It sure looked like Ben was reacting to Desmond’s reveal that Hawking is Daniel’s mom. but what if it was a realization that Widmore’s daughter, Penny, was near.

    I don’t know if Ben is aware of Desmond and Penny’s relationship, but as he is Ben, he probably does.

  24. Greg,

    Wow, Dan. I couldn’t disagree more. Ben has been one of the most compelling characters almost from the start. I never get tired of watching Michael Emerson do his thing, and I don’t have any complaints with the writing of his character.

    I think it isn’t so much him but how easily all the other characters fall to his machinations. Take Sun, for instance. She was there to kill him, but takes him at his word that Jin is alive solely because Ben happened to have Jin’s ring on him at the time? These secondary characters (because Ben is clearly a primary character and the rest rely on him), are just too curious for their own good.

  25. I’m curious why Charlotte would call Daniel a really bad man, the Daniel that was previously on the island.

    She didn’t call him a bad man. I think these were more or less her words.

    “I remember there was this crazy man, and he really scared me. He told me to leave the island and never come back, and if I did, I would die. And … I think that was you, Daniel.”

  26. Here’s another potentially crazy thing to ponder: is Montand still alive? He was the only one of the expedition that we haven’t seen dead.

  27. Maybe a coincidence, but when one of the team members was named Lacombe, I immediately thought of the character of the French scientist who was a UFO expert in Close Encounters!

    DId anyone notice the Geronimo Jackson reference by Charlotte in her ramblings? Am I the only one geeky enough to have seen the fake Geronimo Jackson interviews on the DVD extras? :-)

  28. I thought Daniel and Charlotte were siblings at first…

    I may be wrong about this, but I think in Charlotte’s string of gibberish she mentioned something that might be key later on. Something about her Mother marrying an American. Any thoughts on who that might make her parents? My first thought was maybe Daniel, but I’m backing off that a little now. Anyway, I think it is probably someone we know. Maybe Christian, maybe Ben…maybe Halliwax?

    Her Mother? Ellie? Maybe Charlotte and Daniel may still be siblings?

  29. My wife calls Lost a soap opera for men (no offense to the ladies out there) so I’m going all out:

    I wonder if Ben and Annie are Charlotte’s parents. For whatever reason, Annie got sick of Ben/Dharma and took young Charlotte to England to get away from all.

    This may explain why Ben stole Alex from Danielle and ironic that Ben shot Charlotte last year (unsuccessfully of course).

    That may be a little too cute since everything doesn’t have to have a BIG connection, but I doubt we’ve heard the last of Charlotte’s story. Perhaps we’ll see Daniel warn young Charlotte soon.

  30. Dan,

    I think Sun’s reaction is understandable as she is desperate for ANYTHING about Jin. A ring, a sliver of hope that he may still be alive is enough to make her reconsider and do anything to get him back. It was a nice sign that she hasn’t turned to the dark side but honestly devastated by losing her husband. I was afraid she was turning into a “Dark Sun” (nerdy X-Men reference) and developing into a major villain.

    I’m not sure why she singled out Ben (and her Dad) for Jin’s “death.” Widmore seems like the obvious target of her revenge. That is if she knows it was his ship.

  31. The thought that Annie is Jeanette, Charlotte’s mother, occurred to me too, and the timing would be about right if Ben and Annie were fairly young at the time.

    However, I tend to think Annie is someone from the past who some fans would love to see again, but really isn’t that important. I could easily be wrong though!

    Also interesting that some thought Charlotte said something about her mother marrying an American; I thought she said *Asian* but I seem to be the only that heard that. Certainly would explain how she came to be fluent in Korean though.

    As for Sun believing Ben – I can tell you this: if I thought there was any chance at all that my husband was alive when I assumed he’d been dead for 3 years, I would pursue it, no question.

  32. Sun blames her father because he’s the reason they were on that flight. Jin was delivering some watches to someone in LA. In the grander context, she blames her father for making Jin his lackey and forcing him into violence, and putting a wedge in their marriage.

  33. Just went back and listened. She says:

    “Why can’t Daddy come with us?”

    then

    “You know what my Mum would say about you marrying an American.”

  34. When Ben sneaked into Widmore’s bedroom “like a rat,” Widmore complained to Ben that “everything you have you stole from me.” We know this means the island, but there must be other things as well. I suspect one of those ‘things’ is Eloise Hawking—once on Charles Widmore’s side, now on Ben’s.

  35. Oh yeah, I just remembered a cute coincidence: the actress who plays Eloise Hawking was in a Nicole Kidman movie called The Others. She was an Other in that movie, too.

  36. #44:

    did you happen to notice a red star on the back of Jin’s shirt…it appeared to be a generic red star sticker small and was on Jin’s back right shoulder???? did you see this??

    Well, yeah.

    I found Jin’s t-shirt, with the tiny red star slightly off center on the back, to be distracting. Have we seen this shirt before?

    #43 “Oh yeah, I just remembered a cute coincidence: the actress who plays Eloise Hawking was in a Nicole Kidman movie called The Others. She was an Other in that movie, too.”

    I noted this a couple of seasons ago.

    The creepy woman from the antique shop in Desmond’s past was played by Fionnula Flanagan. She also had a good, creepy part in a 2001 movie named (what else?) The Others. Incidentally, The Others was based partly on the Henry James novel The Turn of the Screw, one of the books found in the hatch.

  37. Here’s a question I have:

    now that Locke put the donkey wheel back on its axis, what is going to happen to the island? Is it going to jump in time anymore? If it does, will the jumps linger longer?

    If not, what was the purpose of turning the wheel?

  38. Why bring everyone back to avoid the white flashes when they could all just exit via the donkey room and never deal with them again? I guess Locke wouldn’t have liked the idea, but I can’t see how someone like Jin wouldn’t just insist on getting the heck out of there to see his wife.

  39. So… John left the island but he still has an appointment with Richard. Remember when he found it on the Nigeria airplane -after he was shot by Ethan- and said John told him where to find it? That hasn’t happened yet… so I guess he will return to the island and then talk to Richard…

  40. So did anyone understand Charlotte’s Korean? I usually translate for the family, but could not get a grasp on what she said.

  41. Floyd,

    A Korean friend told me that she was unable to understand Charlotte’s Korean without looking at the subtitles. So yeah, it wasn’t very good. She also tells me that Jin’s accent isn’t that great (Daniel Dae Kim’s not a native speaker of Korean, IIRC).

    She also told me that Jin’s words right after Locke explained about the time skipping was pretty hilarious. There were no subtitles, but it was basically, “WTF?! This is crazy!” Speaking of Jin, I think he must be studying Rosetta Stone with Michael Phelps in the off-camera scenes. His English is really progressing quickly.

  42. Just went back and listened. She says:

    “Why can’t Daddy come with us?”

    then

    “You know what my Mum would say about you marrying an American.”

    Very interesting John K, thanks. I usually don’t rewatch the show but I think I might just for her ramblings.

    So now the question is, who was she talking to, and who was she talking about? The only British-American family I can think of right now is the Farradays – Eloise seems to be British, while Daniel’s accent in American, in spite of spending several years at Oxford.

  43. John K:

    Why bring everyone back to avoid the white flashes when they could all just exit via the donkey room and never deal with them again? I guess Locke wouldn’t have liked the idea, but I can’t see how someone like Jin wouldn’t just insist on getting the heck out of there to see his wife.

    That is exactly what I said to my wife while we watched. Jin and Juliet would dig into that room with their bare hands….

  44. First-time poster…

    Greg, great job with this blog! It’s a must-read for me every Thursday…

    I had the same thought about Jin’s grasp of English. Especially when Danielle told him it was 1988. When/why would he have learned such large numbers?

    Oh–and I still don’t understand the speculations that Jin taught Charlotte Korean..??

    When???

  45. #7

    I had always thought [Charlotte] was multilingual

    Me, too, because the first time we see her she’s reading a French newspaper in Tunisia. Maybe she’s not so much “reading” as “looking at photos” though.

  46. Me, too, because the first time we see her she’s reading a French newspaper in Tunisia. Maybe she’s not so much “reading” as “looking at photos” though.

    Or lying to Dan when she says she only knows English, Korean, and Klingon.

  47. Greg, great job with this blog! It’s a must-read for me every Thursday…

    Thanks. This type of encouragement really is appreciated.

    Pardon my ignorance, but isn’t Korea on a different calendar anyway?

    If Korea is anything like Japan, it uses both the Christian calendar and a traditional Korean calendar. The Christian calendar is used worldwide and is very prevalent. I must consult the Google/Wiki on this issue to be sure.

  48. Ta-dah!

    The traditional Korean calendar is a lunisolar calendar which, like the traditional calendars of other East Asian countries, was based on the Chinese calendar. Dates are calculated from Korea’s meridian, and observances and festivals are based in Korean culture.

    The Gregorian calendar was officially adopted in 1895, but traditional holidays and age-reckoning for older generations are still based on the old calendar.[1] The biggest festival in Korea today is Seollal, the first day of the traditional Korean New Year. Other important festivals include Daeboreum (the first full moon), Dano (spring festival) and Chuseok (harvest festival).

    So, yeah, assuming that Jin could understand the words “Nineteen Eighty-eight,” he would have understood the significance of the year.

  49. So does anyone think that Ben pushing the Frozen Donkey Wheel of Time and Locke pulling it mean anything? A metaphor on how they view the world and the people around them?

  50. BTD Greg wrote: “Anyone else think we may find out that Ben killed Locke?”

    I think so. It was also made clear that he sent the lawyers after Kate. I’ll bet it was also come out that he sent the assassins after Sayid.

    Everything Ben is doing is to get the Oceanic 6 back to the Island. He is using different pressure points to convince each person to go. For Kate, he pressures her with the potential loss of Aaron. For Sun, it’s the possibility that Jin is alive.

    I think in Sayid’s (and maybe Hurley’s) case, he did not know how to manipulate them into agreeing to come. Thus, he sends thugs to capture them. The goons were not trying to kill Sayid, but disable him with drugs… much easier to transport him.

    So, yes, I think he kills Locke as a way to put pressure on Jack. We know from an earlier ep that it wasn’t until he learned of Locke’s death that he made the decision to return to the Island.
    For Jack, it was the death of Locke

  51. Maybe this was already addressed and I missed it, but how can Alex be Ben’s daughter (as in Keamy holding her hostage and then executing her, followed by Bens threat to Widmore) when this episode clearly establishes Robert as Alex’s father? Either way, Ben was certainly ultra-possessive of Alex.

  52. Maybe this was already addressed and I missed it, but how can Alex be Ben’s daughter (as in Keamy holding her hostage and then executing her, followed by Bens threat to Widmore) when this episode clearly establishes Robert as Alex’s father? Either way, Ben was certainly ultra-possessive of Alex.

    Alex was Ben’s adopted (read: stolen) daughter.

  53. Assassins could be hired by Ben, or could be Widmore’s people as Sayid apparently spent several years killing off his people.

    I don’t think Locke’s death is Jack’s motivation though. Recall that he was using his Oceanic pass to fly the Pacific every week in the hopes that he would crash, and it was on one of those flights that he read the newspaper squib that Bentham was dead. He must’ve had a visit from Locke by then or he wouldn’t have recognized the name.

    Ben might’ve finally killed Locke, but I also think Sayid might have. When he picked up Hurley, he seemed to know a lot about the death. And the answer could be both – that Ben had Sayid kill Locke, and that’s the cause of the riff between them.

    And random thought, but I miss Keamy! I would love it if they find a way to bring him back, and give him a backstory.

  54. On the official podcast, the executive producers indicated that what we saw was the outer wall of the Temple (internally, they call the place where Smokey dragged down Montand the “declevity of the Temple wall”).

    I find BTD Greg’s question in #33 intriguing, but I think it’s more likely Montand was killed and that when they heard his voice calling for help, it wasn’t really him.

    I have a not yet very clear theory about Jacob/the Island/Smokey. I think they can use (at least some) corpses to do their bidding, inhabit the bodies in some way perhaps, but the bodies retain some remnant of their former selves. So in this episode I do think Christian meant “Jack” as “my son.”

    In one of the mobisodes, Christian (or Christian-person) told Vincent to go wake up his son, then Vincent ran past Jack. (I suppose it’s possible this is another misdirection, but it does seem Jack was the son he was talking about.)

    It’s interesting that Christian-person can pet Vincent, but seemingly can’t wake Jack up himself. We’ve also seen him rock a chair, hold a lamp, and hold Aaron. I wonder if Christian-person couldn’t help Locke up after Locke fell and broke his leg because it was something he had to do for himself.

  55. I assumed that the deficits in Jin’s Koprean were due to his lower class upbringing. Local fiahing village jargon, etc. But his Korean is at least understandable. Charlotte might as well have been speaking Mongolian.

    Koreans use the standard calendar in everyday use. The tradional calendar is used typically for fortune telling.

  56. Pingback: Kulturblog » LOST: “The Life and Death of a Blog Post”
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