When your show ends it’s first season with the biggest cliff hanger since “Who shot JR?” and the second ends in a similar fashion, exactly what is it that can be done to equal the shock and leave viewers with a revelation that your endless questions have an ultimate answer? For ‘Lost’ you simply throw a monkey wrench in your story and have the survivors of Oceanic 815 rescued. In an episode that reveals Charlie’s fate, Jack’s sacrifice, and what’s behind Mikhail’s eyepatch we are given two hours of ‘Lost’ that easily fits in at the top tier of episodes the show has ever produced. There’s a lot to cover, so fellow fans let’s dive right in. For convenience sake this recap is split into story sections, so if you just want to glance at what happened in the flashbacks you can do that.
The Island Story:
We return to the island as the Losties prepare to make the trek to the radio tower and the three shooters say their goodbyes. Sayid tells Jack that no matter what happens he has to keep moving. If Sayid has to die, he wants it to be because he helped his friends get rescued. Rose reminds her husband that he’s a dentist, not Rambo. Jin, in what I felt was a truly touching moment, tells his wife, “We have to go home,” when she asks why he’s staying behind. Something about him speaking English made the moment just a bit more poignant. So now the plan is fully in motion, and the Others are about to get an explosive surprise.
When the Others arrive at the beach camp Sayid, Jin, and Bernard line up their shots. Because they are under radio silence Ben’s frantic message to warn the team that Juliet has betrayed them goes unanswered. They creep up to the tents and both Sayid and Bernard hit their targets. Two huge explosions and seven dead Others later Jin is unable to hit the dynamite in his tent. The remaining Others capture the trio and Tom radios Ben. Ben immediately tells them to kill Jin in order to find out what’s going on. Bernard isn’t able to let it happen, and even though Jin tells him not to talk, he tells Tom where the Losties are headed and that Carl’s the one who informed them the Others were coming a day early. Ben immediately realizes that Alex sent Carl to help. As he makes plans to head out by himself to intercept Jack Alex demands she go with, to which Ben quickly agrees.
As the group continues the hike to the radio tower Kate stops with Sawyer and asks him what happened. Sawyer has been a bit un-Sawyer like lately, even referring to Freckles as Kate. Clearly killing Locke’s father is taking it’s toll on James Ford, and when Kate says she wants to go back to check why there were only two explosions he tells her he doesn’t want to go. Back with the group Sawyer tells Jack he’s going back. Kate has the same question everyone else did…why now when you just said you didn’t want to go back? He tells her he didn’t want to go with her. Jack doesn’t think it’s a good idea to go back unarmed, but Juliet steps up and says she knows of a weapon cache nearby. Jack let’s Sawyer and Juliet leave, but not before Juliet kisses him. Maybe it was just me, but I didn’t notice Jack enjoying it all that much.
As Juliet leads Sawyer back to the beach they exchange quips. Nice to know that the Sawyer we know and love is still around, but it appears to be more clearly a façade than ever before. Juliet reveals that there is no weapon cache. Hurley then shows up to offer his help. He says that he simply wants to help. Sawyer looks at him and says, “Look at you Hugo…do you want to get us killed?” Hurley’s looked heartbreakingly devestated as he turned around and headed back. James Ford might have treated his friend like a jerk, but it truly appears he doesn’t want to risk anyone else getting hurt. He’s protecting him.
Speaking of which, back to the trek for radio power Kate stops to remove a pebble from her shoe when Jack talks with her. He tells her that Sawyer didn’t mean what he said, he was just trying to protect her. Kate asks why Jack is defending Sawyer when the act wouldn’t be reciprocated. He looks at her and says, “Because I love you.” It’s a small thing, but fans have been waiting for one of these two to say it. Rousseau speaks with Jack and tells him that she doesn’t want to be rescued; her home is on the island now. Not long after that Ben catches up and requests a private meeting with Jack.
Jack is extremely upset at seeing Ben, and initially doesn’t have any desire to talk. But Ben says that they killed seven of his people, the least Jack can do is give him five minutes. Jack begrudgingly agrees. Ben tells Jack that he made a decision that killed forty people, and history is repeating itself. Jack questions this, asking if the Others are surrounding them right now. Ben tells him that no, in fact the parachute woman is the dangerous one. Naomi will lead destruction to the island. Ben explains that she works for a group that’s been looking for the island and when they arrive, everyone on the island will die. Jack doesn’t believe him, so Ben uses the walkie talkie to call Tom at the beach where they have Jin, Sayid, and Bernard. Ben wants Naomi’s phone and he threatens to kill Jack’s friends for it. He tells Tom to shoot the prisoners if they don’t hear from him in one minute. Jack refuses to cave in, saying he will rescue everyone. The minute expires and we hear three gunshots over the walkie talkie. As an answer, Jack pummels Ben and then calls Tom. He tells Mr. Friendly that he’s leading his friends to the radio tower, get them rescued, and then he’s going to seek Tom out and kill him.
Jack drags the bloodied Ben back to the group and tells them to tie him up, Ben’s coming with. Alex approaches Ben and Rousseau follows after. Ben introduces them to each other. Kate goes to ask Jack what happened, and he tells her Sayid, Jin, and Bernard were killed and he let it happen. She asks why he didn’t kill Ben, and he tells her he wants Ben to experience the moment when they are rescued and he failed. Then Jack will kill him.
Finally back to the beach and Tom lets us breathe a sigh of relief when he says they should have killed the captives instead of putting bullets in the sand. Sawyer and Juliet are watching from the tree line as they assess the situation. They are outgunned, and clearly outmanned. As is often the case on ‘Lost,’ when there’s no hope left Hurley is around to save the day. Save it he does when he drives the VW Hurley Bus directly at the Others, killing one of them. If you thought that was awesome, things step up fifteen notches as Sayid uses his leg to snap another man’s neck. What’s that you say? It couldn’t get better? Tom Friendly is on his knees saying he gives up as Sawyer stares down at him. Sawyer shoots Tom in the chest, looking down at the man he says, “That’s for taking the kid off the boat.” Way to be a cowboy Sawyer. Hurley asks why he killed Tom when the man surrendered, and Sawyer says he didn’t believe him. Sad as I am to see Tom go, I didn’t either. And damnit it’s about time the Losties take some preventative action, rather than keeping these lying bastards around.
Hurley calls over the radio to tell the Others, “We got you bastards. And if you don’t want to get blown up, stay away from our beach.” Jack answers and Hurley tells him, and everyone, that Sayid, Jin and Bernard are all alive. They rejoice for a moment and then continue the trek to the radio tower. Naomi notices that the signal is no longer being jammed thanks to Charlie’s efforts, but she can’t get through because Rousseau’s message is interfering. They get to the radio tower and turn off the transmission. Naomi goes outside and gets a signal. Ben pleads with Jack to stop her, that he doesn’t know what he’s doing. Jack says he knows exactly what he’s doing, and Naomi begins to make the call. At that moment John shows up and throws his knife into Naomi’s back, killing her.
Locke tells Jack to not use the phone. Jack is done with all these rules, and tells Locke to shoot him if he wants to stop him. Locke can’t do it and simply tells his friend, “You’re not supposed to do this.” Locke then walks away as a voice comes over on the phone and Jack answers it. The man tells Jack they can get a fix on their position and are coming to rescue the Losties. Holy crap, three seasons before the series ends and they get rescued. Anyone who says they saw it coming, without reading spoilers, is a liar. Minds have officially been blown. Too bad things aren’t as happy as they’d appear.
We’ve been wondering what will happen to Charlie. After seeing him at death’s door twice in the series (season one when Ethan strung him up and a few episodes ago when he nearly caught an arrow with his throat) there had to be a way to deliver the death in a meaningful way. It was a difficult task and ‘Lost’ delivered the goods, showcasing what great writing and acting this series really does have.
The two ladies in the Looking Glass hatch have Charlie tied up in a chair and are beating him for information. Other than a bloody face, it’s not too bad a situation to be in. When they ask him what he plans to do he smiles and tells them the truth, Jack Sparrow style. Charlie tells them that he’ll turn the jammer off, but they question whether he has the code. It’s a snag in the plan, but Charlie shrugs it off saying that he won’t need it. When asked what happens to him, he simply says that he’ll die. This doesn’t seem to sit well with the lovely ladies of the underwater hatch.
Back up top Desmond wakes up and realizes Charlie has gone down to the hatch. At that moment Mikhail shows up, after being ordered by Ben to go check out the situation the night before. He begins shooting at Desmond who immediately jumps in the water and swims to the Looking Glass. He surfaces and Charlie quickly tells him to hide before the girls return. Desmond hides just as the girls return and Charlie covers up by pretending to sing. Nothing like a round of “You All Everybody” to perk up your spirits. One of the girls heads to the locker to get a spear gun, which happens to be where Desmond is hiding, when Mikhail arrives and inadvertently saves the day.
He is clearly surprised to see anyone there, and also that the hatch is not flooded. So it would seem Juliet wasn’t lying when she told the Losties the hatch was flooded because she thought it was. Charlie finds this interesting and asks “Cyclops” why Ben would lie to him and also that the girls are jamming transmission from the island. Mikhail is upset by this and at that moment Ben calls in. Mikhail answers Ben’s call and is not happy with being lied to. Ben says that the jamming was for everyone’s security, that the island is facing a threat greater than anything it’s seen in many years. They must do everything in their power to stop it. Ben apologizes to Mikhail for lying to him. This seems to appease the one eyed man, and Ben tells him to kill Charlie and the girls.
Following orders Mikhail shoots one of the women, and as the other runs he shoots her in the back wounding her. As he prepares to kill her Desmond steps out of the locker and puts a spear through Mikhail’s chest. Charlie stops Desmond from killing the remaining woman, saying they need her. Charlie asks her for the code, and she is reluctant at first. He tells her that Ben obviously lied to them and telling him the code would be a nice way to throw it in his face. She begins saying the code but goes too fast for Charlie to get it written down. Before she dies she says the code is “Good Vibrations” by the Beach Boys.
Desmond goes to prepare some scuba tanks for their return to the surface as Charlie enters the room with the terminal. He hums “Good Vibrations” for a bit and then begins entering it on the numerical keypad. Once done the jamming equipment shuts off, but where’s the switch? Maybe fate doesn’t have Charlie in it’s clutches after all. Well, it was a nice thought. As he goes to leave, a transmission comes through. The woman on the other end is Desmond’s Penelope. Charlie asks if she’s on the boat offshore ready to rescue them, he also tells her they found Naomi. Penelope is not on a boat, nor does she know who Naomi is.
As he finishes up preparations Desmond notices that Mikhail’s body is missing. Seriously, is there any way this man can be killed? Back in the control room Charlie looks through the window to see Mikhail outside holding a grenade. He runs to the door and shuts it before the grenade blows. The room begins filling up with water and Charlie quickly realizes he has a message to pass on. Using his trademark marker he writes three words on his hand and presses it against the door window for Desmond to read. “Not Penelope’s Boat.” With that Desmond’s premonition comes true and Charlie is dead.
Jack’s Flashback, or Prepare to go through the looking glass, fall down the rabbit hole, and wake up in Mind Blown land
This week is a Jack-centric episode, and in his flashbacks he sports a spiffy beard and haggard demeanor. As Jack sat on the airplane asking for another drink I had a fleeting moment where I wondered how I never noticed he had a beard during the crash. Silly me, this is another flight. Where to and why are explained later, but ultimately we come to find it doesn’t matter. Instead of giving Dr. Shepard a drink the stewardess offers him the newspaper. Something in the paper catches Jack’s eye, and he rips it out of the paper. Oh goodie, we have our next big question of the series. What the hell is in the paper? Whatever it is Jack is clearly upset, and as he drives along a bridge late at night he attempts to make a call before hanging up. Jack stands at the edge of the bridge, ready to jump, when an accident occurs.
The midsection of the flashback is really just more of Jack being haggard and strung out. There are clues throughout about what’s really happening, but honestly it was very enjoyable to watch…there just isn’t a lot to say about it. Except of course that damn newspaper piece. Jack seems driven by it, and at the same time distraught over it. He arrives at a funeral parlor and is told no one showed up for the viewing. So clearly, someone has died. After stealing oxycodone from his hospital and just being a complete wreck Jack makes the call he tried to on the bridge at the opening of the episode. Whoever it is agrees to meet him at the airport.
Jack waits at the end of a runway in his car as someone approaches. The person walks into the light and is revealed to be Kate. Wow, we’ve just been thrown for a loop. The flashback was a flashforward and it looks like Jack and Kate are going to survive. Kate asks why he wanted to meet her, and he shows her the article. He wonders if she’d go to the funeral, and she asks why she’d go. Jack tells her that he uses the “golden pass” the airline gave them to take trips every Friday. It doesn’t matter where he’s going, he just wants the plane to crash. He doesn’t care about the other people on the plane, Jack just wants to get back. Frustrated and desperate he tells Kate they weren’t supposed to leave the island. She responds that they were, and leaves. Jack calls after her, “We have to go back!” Jack stands alone at the end of the runway yelling after the departing Kate, and that ends season three of ‘Lost.’
Trust me when I say we have questions and comments to be made during the hiatus. For now though, we’re going to let the episode sit and marinate in our minds. What the producers of the show have done with the recent episodes, and especially this one, is bring ‘Lost’ back to it’s season one greatness. Actually, I might be tempted to say that “Through the Looking Glass” is the best episode of the series. It’s certainly top 5 material. The question is now, do we see what happened between the rescue and the scene at the airport between Jack and Kate or is this a “Dark Tower” cycle and Jack has to keep doing it until he gets it right? Stay tuned to TV Blend over the coming months for news on ‘Lost.’ Until then you can discuss the show at our forums over here.