LOST: “The Package”
Spoilers from tonight’s Sun and Jin episode, and other stuff, after the jump.
Links and miscellanea
- Yunjin Kim (Sun) was married this past Sunday in Hawaii.
- Want to buy an ad on the final episode of Lost? It will cost you around 900 grand for a thirty second spot.
- So the title to the final episode has been announced. All I ask is that we’re not subjected to Jim Morrison’s horrible poetry.
- From /film: if Saul Bass had created the opening credits to Lost.
- Michael Emerson got beaten up a bit for real when fight scene choreography went awry.
- USA Today has a handy guide to some of the biblical references in Lost.
Observations and speculations
- The episode opens with some creepy POV shots through night-vision goggles with enhanced listening, from the perspective of some of Widmore’s men.
- Not-Locke talks to Jin about Jacob’s seaside cave, and claims that he will need all of the candidates, “all the names that haven’t been crossed off,” to go with him to leave the island. I think it’s either that, or Not-Locke is looking to gather them so that he can kill them all and make sure that Jacob cannot be replaced.
- At LAX, in LA-X, we return to the scene of U.S. Customs, where Jin-Soo Kwan is distraught that he has missed the meeting at “the restaurant” (and we already know how that is going to go for him), and that the $25,000 that Mr. Paik asked him to deliver with the watch has been confiscated.
- Later, when Sun and Jin arrive at the hotel, we find out that they are not married yet, and Jin is extremely concerned about appearances, insisting on a separate room. (Incidentally, Sun’s room is on the 8th floor. And Jin’s room number is Room 842, for those of you still playing the Numbers game. 42 is the number associated with “Kwon” in both the cave and the lighthouse.)
- Back at Camp Not-Locke, Sayid tells Mr. Black Smoke that he doesn’t feel anything anymore—no anger, no happiness, no pain. Not Locke tells him that maybe that’s best, “It’ll help you get through what’s coming.” Clearly, the “infection” (if that’s what it is) has affected him differently than it affected Claire; she is well-stocked in anger. Sayid seems to be becoming a zombie, though he’s not yet shown any brain-eating tendencies.
- Jin doesn’t trust Not-Locke. Sawyer mentions a previous conversation in which he told Jin about his “deal” with Widmore. I like that there are lost of allusions to off-camera conversations—the survivors are talking among themselves more now than they did when they first arrived on the island.
- Jin’s threat to leave camp in search of Sun appears to be the catalyst for the tranq attack. Interestingly, Team Widmore wants Jin not because of his possible candidacy, but because of the geological surveying he did when he was a member of the DHARMA Initiative back it in the ’70s. I didn’t see that one coming. They have no interest in Sawyer or any of the other members of Team Smokie. They also don’t seem overly interested in killing at this point, leaving open the possiblity that Widmore isn’t really the villain.
- Back at the beach, Miles and Lapidus appear to be playing gin rummy. Miles has a pair of sixes, a pair of queens, a pair of kings and an ace, ten and seven of hearts. So they are in the middle of their hand. Ilana is cleaning her rifle and having a spirited discussion with Ben about what their next move is. Ilana still has faith in Jacob that Richard will bring the answer. She proclaims that “Jacob has never lied to me before.” This, of course, comes on the heels of Richard’s insistence that everything Jacob said was a lie. She seems certain, though.
- Miles’ best line: “Unless Alpert is covered in bacon grease, I’m not sure Hurley can track anything.”
- Sun returns to her garden, and Jack annoys her. Just like old times. Sun shuts Jack down—she doesn’t want to hear about purpose or destiny, she just wants to find Jin and leave.
- Back in LA-X, Sun lures Jin into her hotel room and seduces him. Only later do we find out that the two had an ongoing, if illicit and covert, relationship. This is somewhat consistent with what we know of Sun’s backstory. For all of her sweetness on the Island, Sun has a history of causing problems for those around her and acting selfishly.
- On the island, Not-Locke confronts Sun in her garden and tries to persuade her to go with him to Camp Locke where (he thinks) Jin is waiting. Sun distrusts Not-Locke, with good reason. She has seen Locke’s corpse and knows about the Temple massacre. And Locke could probably work on his people skills: “I didn’t want to hurt those people. Anyone of them could come with me, and I’m giving you that choice right now” really sounds like a threat. Sun turns tail, runs away into the jungle and, in the process, bumps her head on a tree. Although Not-Locke was about to overtake her, he doesn’t do her any harm himself.
- In Sun’s LA-X hotel room, the morning after, Sun reveals her plan to run away with Jin. This parallels her Oceanic crash story line, except in that case the plan was to run away from Jin, not with him. An ominous knock comes at the door, and Jin hides in the bathroom, but before she answers the knock, she looks in the mirror and has one of those vague, deja-vu-like moments looking at her reflection in the mirror.
- Keamy arrives, followed by Omar. Which raises a question—why is LA-X populated by so many characters we know from DHARMA, or the Others, or the Freighter? Were these characters’ lives to be intertwined no matter what universe they lived in?
- Ben finds Sun in the jungle, post-head bump, but she doesn’t speak English anymore. Not-Locke returns to camp to find his team members tranqed and rouses Sayid, who doesn’t know much. And Jin awakes in Room 23 on Hydra Island.
- Zoe tells Jin that the DHARMA Initiative used Room 23 to do experiments on subliminal messages. But we know that the Others also used it for brainwashing purposes. Karl was subject to this, and probably Walt as well. And one of the main messages in the creepy Room 23 movie is that “God loves you as he loved Jacob.”
- Zoe, who it turns out is a geophysicist, wants Jin to help interpret his writing on a grid map that the DHARMA Initiative used to identify pockets of electro-magnetism. It seems that Team Widmore’s plan to defeat Not-Locke involves tapping into the Island’s electro-magnetic powers.
- Back at Camp Not-Locke, Sayid and the team leader are planning a mission on the outrigger and Sayid keeping a gun wrapped in plastic. It’s unclear why Sayid is willing to go along, but he does. Not-Locke tells Claire that she is not a candidate. He also tells Claire that Kate’s name is not on the cave wall (“not anymore”), but that he needs Kate to get the other candidates. Then he pretty much gives Claire the go ahead to take her vengence on Kate once she’s served her purpose. “Whatever happens, happens,” he says, paraphrasing an episode title from last season.
- Best Sawyer dialogue, and best dialogue of the episode:
Sawyer: What do you need a boat for? Can’t you just turn into black smoke and fly your ass over the water?
Not-Locke: Do you think that if I could do that that I’d still be on this island?
Sawyer (with sarcasm): No, because that’d be ridiculous.
I laughed, and it was out loud.
- I’ve said it before. Keamy makes a great villain. Best Keamy line: “I feel like I’m in a damn Godzilla movie.” Keamy asks Omar to get Mikhail Bakunin to act as a translator, introducing yet another Other into the LA-X storyline. Recall that Mikhail was a sort of communications officer for the Others, manning the Flame station.
- On the island, back on the beach: poor Ben. No one believes him now, even when he’s telling the truth. Jack diagnosis Sun with aphasia. Wiki:
Aphasia is an acquired language disorder in which there is an impairment of any language modality. This may include difficulty in producing or comprehending spoken or written language.
Depending on the area and extent of brain damage, someone suffering from aphasia may be able to speak but not write, or vice versa, or display any of a wide variety of other deficiencies in language comprehension and production, such as being able to sing but not speak. Aphasia may co-occur with speech disorders such as dysarthria or apraxia of speech, which also result from brain damage.
Aphasia is usually the result of some sort of disease-induced brain damage, not a bump to the head, but it’s good enough for television.
- I enjoyed the parlay between Not-Locke and Widmore. “Easy friend, I come in peace.” (Which was a nice sci-fi complement to Sawyer’s “take me to your leader” from two weeks ago.) Widmore says what he knows of the Smoke Monster is “a combination of myth, ghost stories and jungle noises at night.” Not-Locke is the island’s boogie man, essentially. I think it’s interesting that Jacob never clearly communicated the nature of the Man in Black to the Others, even those as prominent as Widmore.
- Richard is now on a zealous mission to stop the Man in Black, and his plan is to destroy the plane. Not everyone seems on board with that plan, and especially not Sun. She’s not interested in the big game, she just wants to get her husband and get out. (I wonder how Mr. Paik figures into this meta-struggle. Presumably, he’d be a Widmore ally.)
- In LA-X, Sun begins to figure out that things have gone bad when the bank teller informs her that her father closed her secret account.
- In the restaurant’s walk-in refrigerator, after strapping Jin into a metal chair with duct tape, Keamy tells Jin, “The heart wants what the heart wants,” which is allegedly what Woody Allen said to Mia Farrow to justify his affair with her adopted daughter Soon-Yi. Like Sun, Soon-Yi is also from South Korea. Then Keamy tells Jin, “Some people just aren’t meant to be together.”
- Returning from his Hydra Island chat with Not-Locke, Widmore is upset with Zoe for taking Jin so quickly. “This was not supposed to happen for days. We had a timetable.” Zoe says they had no choice because Jin was leaving the camp. She adds, “Maybe you should have put a mercenary in charge instead of a geophysicist.” Widmore, however, has apparently learned his lesson from the last time his people made it to the island, and this time, he left the mercenaries at home.
- Jin sees photos of Ji-Yeon for the first time on Sun’s digital camera. Widmore uses this as leverage with Jin, with good effect. He also mentions his daughter, Penny. He mentions her in the present tense, suggesting that perhaps Ben was not successful at killing her at the dock in Los Angeles. Widmore insists that “If that thing masquerading as John Locke were to get off this island … everyone we know and love would simply cease to be.” I’m not sure what that means, but it’s not good. It reminds me of Eloise Hawking saying, “Then God help us all.”
- Finally, the LA-X storyline overlaps with Sayid’s off-island narrative, and Sayid gives half-hearted assistance, handing Jin a box cutter. Jin frees himself and manages to get a gun and kill Mikhail by shooting him in the eye. This dovetails with Mikhail’s state as we see him on the island, eyepatch and all. Meanwhile, Sun has been injured in the firefight, and Jin carries her away to find medical care, carelessly leaving the wounded, but still-living Keamy behind.
- Jack and Sun have a moment on the beach. Jack draws on his experience as a medical resident and tries to bore Sun to wellness. Sun indicates that she does trust Jack. Jack’s manner is Jacob-like; If any of the candidates become Jacob’s replacement,my vote is for Jack.
- Finally, we have the last reveal of the episode, with Sayid discovering the identity of the episode’s eponymous “package.” It’s Desmond, and he doesn’t seem to have returned to the Island by choice; he’s drugged and pretty beaten up. There’s a sort of congruity to this, even if it’s without explanation. We knew that Desmond would somehow be a key to the end game, since for whatever reason the rules don’t apply to him.
I liked this episode. I liked the mix of on- and off-island storytelling, and I think the plot was advanced nicely. There was still a lot of setting the groundwork, and it wasn’t my favorite of the season, but it was solid.
What did you all think? Did “The Package” inspire any new thoughts or theories?