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Messages in a Bottle: LOST Thoughts #9

I don't even know where to begin after seeing this week's episode of Lost ("?"), written by Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse. After seeing the season finale of Veronica Mars on Tuesday night and then this, my nerves are completely jangled. With that said, let's dive right in.

Eko has a dream in which Ana-Lucia appears to him and asks him what he's building (yes, we know, it's a church) and then before his eyes begins to bleed from her wounds she received at the hands of Michael last episode. Then a number of images: a cross on the ground, Eko's brother, the hatch. Eko's dead brother Yemi sits at the computer in the hatch, the counter showing only question marks (above), the keyboard the same. Yemi says, "This work is important," and insists that Eko must help John and make Locke take him to the question mark. Oh, and he should take the axe. Eko wakes up with a start. (Was it just me or did it appear that there was some sort of white, transparent smoke drifting about the camp when Eko awakened? Or just the residues of the campfire? Hmmm...)

Back at the hatch, the castaways discover an injured Michael, who tells them that the Other-Formerly-Known-As-Henry-Gale shot him and escaped. Inside, they find the bodies of Ana-Lucia and Libby, who both seem very much dead. Everyone is shocked... except for Michael, who seems pleased with his handiwork. But wait! Libby starts coughing up blood all over the place. She's ALIVE... but barely. Jack moves her over to the bed as he and Kate attempt to staunch the bleeding.

Jack wants to go after "Henry" but if he goes, then who will watch over Libby? Eko offers to go and suggests Locke accompany him, as he has mad tracking skills. Jack reluctantly agrees and Locke and Eko (I love the little mirror-image their names form) set out into the night. But Eko has no intention of tracking Henry. He's after the question mark and Locke isn't giving him any answers... so Eko bashes him in the head and knocks him unconscious. As any sane person would do.

The Lost Flashback of the Week belongs to Eko, naturally. This time, we see Eko as a priest in Australia (aha!) preparing for a trip to Los Angeles (why?) with the aid of some forged documents (namely an Aussie passport). But before Eko (or Father Tundi as he's called) can leave, he's assigned to investigate the veracity of a miracle in the parish: a young girl drowned to death and apparently came back to life. Eko is skeptical, but that's exactly why he's been assigned to this investigation. He talks to the coroner, who plays Eko a disturbing tape of the autopsy... and autopsy that took a turn for the seriously weird when the body came to life.

Eko knows that it's his mission to return to Locke his lost faith (though the last time Locke lost faith, someone else had died too, namely Boone... coincidence?). Locke gives Eko his homemade map to the question mark, which he "transcribed" from ten seconds of memory. It's not very accurate at all, in fact. But it's all they have. And wouldn't you know it? That darn map leads our twosome directly to the drugrunners' plane, which had contained the body of Eko's dead brother Yemi, the Virgin Mary statues containing heroin, the radio that Boone used to made contact with Bernard, and a hell of a lot of Boone Carlisle's DNA from when the plane came crashing down out of the tree canopy. Eko says that they will make camp there.

Back at the hatch, Libby is not doing well. Jack has managed to stop her bleeding, but that's not a good thing. All he can do now is make her comfortable. And she needs heroin to ease her pain. And who has the drug stash? Well, Sawyer, that's who. Jack sends Kate to accompany Sawyer to his secret stash--where the guns are hidden as well--to get the drugs. And surprise, Sawyer's secret stash is right on the beach, right underneath him in fact in his own tent. (As Sydney Bristow once told us, the best place to hide is sometimes right in plain sight.)

Alongside the plane, Eko awakens. He sees Yemi motioning to him from the bushes and telling him to be quiet--he'll wake John up. Yemi says that he has to climb and Eko takes his axe and begins to climb to the top of the canopy and the cliff beyond. Just as he reaches the top, he sees Yemi in Locke's wheelchair and falls... and Locke wakes up. It was HIS dream. He and Eko are connected and it's essential that they do this together. Locke fills Eko in on the dream (leaving out the wheelchair, of course) and Eko knows what he has to do.

Flashback: Eko continues his investigation into the miraculous resurrection of this girl. He visits her home and we learn that Miracle Girl's dad is (drum roll, please) Richard Malkin, the same psychic that Claire went to see and who prophesied great danger should someone else raise her baby. Scary! He admits he's a big fraud and says that his daughter fell into a mountain stream and had hypothermia. She wasn't dead. His wife is a zealot and is using this to get back at him. But the girl watches Eko from behind the curtains. Maybe there is more too this than meets the eye...

Eko climbs to the top of the cliff and looks out and sees... more island nothingness. He turns back to where he climbed up and sees the question mark in the ground below... next to the drugrunners' plane! He climbs down and investigates, discovering that the ground has been salted. The mark is permanent. Eko needs Locke's help moving the plane. He believes what they are looking for is right beneath it. They push the plane aside (rather easily, I might add) and begin to push the dirt away, only to find a metal hatch in the earth. They attempt to open it but it seems locked. Until Eko uses his axe (I knew it couldn't just be used for climbing).

Welcome to Station 5: The Pearl. Locke and Eko climb down the ladder and find some lights, discovering a tiny room filled with TV monitors. Locke turns on the dusty monitors... and sees a lot of static and--wait for it--Jack in their hatch! Searching the room, they discover a video tape marked "Orientation." Together, they sit down and watch the orientation film (which bears a copyright from 1980). Hey, it's our old pal Candle (from "Orientation"), except now he says his name is Mark Whitman. (What gives?) The Station of the Pearl is apparently a monitoring station, overseeing the psychological experiments being conducted in the other stations. (Hmmm... like pushing the button every 108 minutes?) The Dharma participants are supposed to record their findings in a series of composition notebooks and use the pneumatic tubes to send them directly to Dharma HQ (wherever that may be). Locke believes that, like his whole worthless life, all of this was pointless. But Eko counters that Locke's work is very important, more important than anything else. They need to keep pushing the button and, if Locke will not continue his work, Eko will.

Flashback: Miracle Girl shows up at the airport as Eko checks in for Oceanic Flight 185. She has a message for Eko... from Yemi. She claims to have seen Yemi when she was between the two worlds. Yemi says that he has faith in Eko, even if Eko has lost faith in himself. Eko is a good man. And he will see Yemi again soon. Eko flips out at Miracle Girl, asking if her father put her up to this. His voice is loud and angry and a female voice asks if everything is okay. The camera pulls back to reveal Libby in line for the flight check in. Thank you, Damon and Carlton, for setting the record straight once and for all and making it abundantly clear that Libby was on the plane. End of story.

Back at the hatch, Jack injects Libby with some heroin to dull her pain as Kate cries and curls up with Sawyer and Michael creepily hangs out in the armory. Hurley asks if he could talk to Libby and Jack agrees. As Hurley says her name, Libby opens her eyes, straining to speak. All she can manage is to say, "Michael." Jack reassures her that Michael made it out okay, but a look of abject terror crosses Libby's face before she dies. Damn it, couldn't she have been, I don't know, more specific in her last words? As Locke and Eko make their way back to the hatch, the familiar sounds of the computer beeping begin and we see a very scary-looking Michael look at the screen...

Next week on Lost: Michael launches a plan to raid the Others' camp and free Walt, Zeke returns and he's gotten into the theatrical glue again, Walt is alive according to some woman, Sayid thinks Michael may be "compromised," and the castaways witness something... unusual.

Lost Experience clue of the week: another Hanso Foundation commercial, this time leading us to a website. Click on each of the selected monitors in turn until each one lights up... you'll then be taken to the password: Heir Apparent. Go back to the Hanso website and visit the newsletter again and when Persephone prompts you for a password, enter "Heir Apparent." Unfortunately, all she tells you is to call the call center in the TV ad section. Anyone have any better luck?

What's On Tonight

8 pm: Survivor: Panama--Exile Island (CBS); Will & Grace (NBC); Smallville (WB); American Inventor (ABC); That '70s Show (FOX; 8-10 pm); Everybody Hates Chris/Love, Inc. (UPN)

8:40 pm: My Name is Earl (NBC)

9 pm: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (CBS); Supernatural (WB); American Inventor (ABC); Eve/Cuts (UPN)

9:20 pm: The Office (NBC).

10 pm: Without a Trace (CBS); ER (NBC); Primetime (ABC)

What I'll Be Watching

8 pm: Everybody Hates Chris.

On tonight's episode ("Everybody Hates Father's Day"), Chris' dad Julius decides to spend Father's Day by himself, doing what he wants, when he wants. Meanwhile, Chris attempts to find the perfect gift for his dad. Keep looking, Chris. Chocolate turtles, apparently are Rochelle's thing.

8:40 pm: My Name is Earl.

On the super-sized season finale of My Name is Earl ("Number One"), Earl attempts to make up for item number one on his famous list--stealing $10 from a man's wallet to buy a lottery ticket--but discovers that Karma has a rather ironic sense of humor when he ends up penniless.

9:20 pm: The Office.

Forty minutes later on a super-sized season finale of The Office ("Casino Night"), written by Steve Carell, Michael decides to host a Casino Night to raise money for charity and holds the event in the Dunder-Miflin warehouse. Will Jim declare his love for Pam and stop her summer wedding to the thick-headed Roy? Will Pam go through with it? Will there ever be a merger?

In the meantime, fear not, Office workers. While tonight may mark the end of the adventures of the Dunder-Mifflin crew this season, NBC will be releasing ten stand-alone webisodes this summer revolving around the mysterious disappearance of $3000 from the office. Intriguing... Personally, I blame Dwight.


Anonymous said…
Another fantastic "Lost" episode!

I love it when Locke and Eko interact. It's like a totally twisted buddy when Eko head butts Locke because he's being "difficult." Priceless.

Libby's death was a bit of a shocker. Will we ever find out what she was doing in Hurley's psych ward? (I put my faith in the "Lost" writers that, indeed, we will.)

And the station of The Pearl. What was up with that? It made it seem as though the other stations were just experiments but whose to say that The Pearl wasn't an experiment too? The people that were stationed there were told to observe but weren't told what they were observing. And does that mail chute even go anywhere? Possibly not. I have a feeling with everything on the island...
The Pearl may not be what it seems.

I loved the reappearance of Claire's psychic as the father or Miracle Girl. He told Eko that his business is a sham. He secretly researches his clients and then provides them with a miracle... because that's what they want. But doesn't the island do the same thing to the survivors? It seems to read their thoughts or "scan" them (remember the smoke and Eko face off?) and then give them some sort of a the appearance of a dead brother or father or a white horse etc.

Finally, I thought the Eko dream sequences were very well done and I particularly liked the sound effect of the numbers rolling back and resetting during the first dream sequence when all of the images flashed by.

Can't wait for the next episode!
Jace Lacob said…
Wow, you've got some really good thoughts/theories there.

I was really upset that they killed Libby off... especially after bringing her back from the brink of death earlier in the episode, but at the same time, there's no way she could really recover from two gunshot wounds to the stomach, with or without the island's magical magnetic rock.

Very interesting theory about the Pearl. I agree that the Pearl itself may be an experiment (notice how there was a camera filming the Pearl's interior as well) and that its discovery may not discount the importance of the numbers. As to where the pneumatic tube goes, does anyone else envision beavers building a dam out of tube mail a la the Simpsons?

You might be right about the similiarities between Claire's psychic and the island itself, scanning each person's mind/experiences for visual motifs that it can manifest and use to achieve its own ends.

And I didn't catch that the flipping noise during Eko's dream sequence was the same noise as the counter until I rewatched it again. Good catch!

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