Season 5 Episode 3


Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Jan 28, 2009 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (40)

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  • The only one with no reason to go back starts on the path that will lead to ruin

    Unlike the Oceanic 6, Desmond has not been visited by any ghosts connected with the island. He has been reunited with his soulmate, and as we see in the teaser, they've married and have a son. They've managed to avoid the craziness. So, it's quite understandable that Penny is concerned when Desmond tells her he's 'remembered' something about Daniel while he was in the hatch. The two were linked together in last season's classic, 'The Constant', and, as we knew in that episode, Daniel has linked the two of them together in his journal. So, this is how Desmond gets pulled back into the craziness that is the island.

    He goes to Oxford looking after Daniel's research only to find that his labs been bolted up, with no questions being asked. Then he finds Daniel's only connection outside--- a girl named Teresa--- somehow got involved in his research, and is now involved in the ultimate fate worse than death. It is then that Des finds another link between him and Daniel--- his research, from the time he was at Oxford, was being funded by Charles Widmore.

    This leads to one of the great scenes of the season, a complete reversal from the last time Des was there--- that memorable bit where Widmore humiliated Desmond in 'Flashes Before Your Eyes' In complete contrast, he comes crashing in, stands over him with real rage, tells him he's not going to answer any of Widmore questions, and he clearly catches him off guard with the fact that he knows about his links to Daniel and how to find Faraday's mother. Widmore keeps a good poker face, but he's clearly unsettled, considering that he gives in, and tries to warn Des to stay out of the "mess" that he's mired in. It's clear that Desmond wants to let all this go, but ironically, Penny is the one who pushes him forward, saying that he has to follow through. She doesn't know that by doing so, she's putting herself directly under the gunsight--- after all, Ben is in LA, same as Faraday's mother. Desmond also swears he will not go back to the island, the kind of statement that pretty much guarantees it will happen eventually. Difference is, he's not going to go willingly.

    Meanwhile, back on the island, the survivors are still under fire from the previous attack. (And there aren't many left. The flaming arrows took out most of the background characters, and now we see the rest die when they trip a mine in the middle of the creek. This leaves us with Sawyer, Locke, Juliet, Daniel, Miles, Charlotte, and possibly Bernard and Rose {we didn't see them et killed in either place, though it's not quite clear what has happened to them yet.}) Our first assumption is that their some part of the military based on the uniforms, but as Juliet soon fathoms, these are the Others from the past. Prominent among them are a young blond woman named Ellie, who seems a bit quick on the trigger, a hyper young man who calls himself Jones--- and Richard Alpert, looking exactly the same. We soon find out that we're in 1954, and that the army has come preparing to detonate a hydrogen bomb called 'Jughead'. The Others killed the soldiers and are prepared to do the same to these group, until Daniel--- who seems to be getting clearer with every jump figures out, what's going on. He tells Ellie that they need to bury the bomb, and seal it up in lead, and that it will be fine for the next fifty years. But having an unexploded hydrogen bomb on the island is kind of like Chekhov 's shotgun in the first act in a play--- we know, somehow, that bomb's going to end up going off. The question is when?

    We don't deal with this surprise because we've just made another connection--- when 'Jones' catches up with Richard, he is then called 'Widmore' So it seems that Charles Widmore has been linked to the island even longer than we thought was implied in season 4. Perhaps we could have gotten more details if Juliet wasn't so damn stubborn in what information she gives out. She identifies the language the soldiers are speaking as Latin, then tells Locke that Richard has always been part of the island, but she refuses--- as she has always-- to give out details. Now, more than ever, it seems we need to know what the hell's going on, we have a woman on the inside--- and she won't frigging talk! I love Elizabeth Mitchell, I do, but I was really irked at some of the turns her character would take, particular in the episodes where everyone flashes through time. She must have had some answers, but she seemed so restrained in giving them. Honestly, we're closing in on the end now, a few more details?

    John Locke, in the meantime, has Widmore dead in his sights (he doesn't know it's Widmore yet; still...) and lets him walk away. He is more focused on trying to talk to Richard and get some answer of his own. He tells Richard that Jacob sent him , and that he was supposed to be their leader. As proof, he hands over the compass Richard gave him in 'Because You Left', and tells him when and where he will be born. Obviously, this calls a lot of what we learned about him in ' Cabin Fever' to suddenly be in question. Richard didn't travel through time to see him on a whim; he came on a linear path because Locke told him. And he came to visit Locke at age 5, and performed that test, which now seems to be something that they do to check island leadership. Now it makes even more sense... up to a point. Richard presented six objects before a young John , and told him "Take what already belongs to you." John took the vial of sand, clearly representing the island. He took the compass, which was the same compass he gave to Richard in 1954. Then he took the knife, which was the wrong choice, according to Richard. But the object had on him at that occasion was the knife. So why was it the wrong choice then, and why was the Book of Laws apparently the right one. Speculation seems rather pointless now, considering how close we are to the end and with no idea what that book is. But it does call into question: was Locke ever chosen by the island, or was he chosen because he said he was? The consequences will be far grimmer than Locke ever could imagine.

    Of course, right now, the consequences seem pretty serious. For near the end of the episode, the island does another time jump, and by the time they catch up to Charlotte, who has been worsening slowly, she collapses in a dead heap. We still don't know what's happening (and why it's affecting Charlotte more obviously then everyone who's still alive) but it doesn't seem that good things are going to happen unless they find a way to stop these jumps.

    Apart from the fact that we see nothing of the Oceanic 6 in this episode, it's hard to pick out any specific flaws. Desmond is apparently, yet again, locked on another journey who's end is uncertain even to him It's not clear yet what his path is for everyone that's left on and off the island, but he managed to be the one that saved the Oceanic 6 before. Is that going to be his path again?
    My score: 9