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Lost

Season 4 Episode 5

The Constant

6
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Feb 28, 2008 on ABC
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews page 4 of 5

9.6
out of 10
Average
2,311 votes
  • A one of a kind heartwarming and beautiful tale in the lost series.

    10
    This episode was the first lost episode that made me emotional and teary. I believe the storyline between Desmond and Penny is one of the most important story lines of the series so far. When faced with death, Desmond embarks on a quest in both the past and the present to find his true love, so she can save his life. Whilst he does not quite understand what is happening to him, Desmond trusts in his faith and never gives up. Lost has portrayed beautifully what true love can look like on the small screen, and has provided us with what will surely become a series classic.

    Cheers to praying that Penny and Desmond are eventually re-united at last.
  • A brilliant episode which delivers what it promises!

    10
    Desmond and Sayid have some problems in the air, on the way to the freighter. When turbulence starts Desmond begin to have side effects and he continuously travels back in time. When he is back in the present he has amnesia and he does not know what is happening to him. Frank manages to take them to the freighter and then the freighter crew take Desmond in the clinic room. There he encounters Minowski who has the same effects as him. When Desmond communicates with Dan, Dan asks him to tell him what year do they have and he replies 1996. Dan realises what is going on and tells some coordinates to Desmond saying to him to go find him in 1996. Desmond follows his directions when he goes back in time again and he meets him. Dan tells Desmond that he has to find his constant which is Penny so that all could be fixed and go back to normal. He has to communicate with her when he is on the freighter. Back in 1996 Desmond tries to find Penny, he first encounters her father in an auction where he paid for a calendar of Black Rock, and begs him to give him Penny's address. Afterwards, Desmond meets Penny but she does not want to see him. He asks her to give him her phone-number and promises her that she is going to call her in 2004,on Christmas eve. When Desmond comes back in the present, he communicates with Penny who is his constant,and everything comes back to normal. At the end we see Dan reading his diary and having written down in a page: "If something goes wrong,Desmond Hume is my constant" !
    An excellent episode,one of my favourites. It was so adventurous, mind blowing, informative, moving and atmospheric. The scene where Desmond and Penny talk on the phone is one of my favourites in the series. It was so tensed and moving. I really loved it.
    Definitely 10/10.
  • As many others may agree this season of Lost seemed to be lacking something,there was a lot going on but none of it was actually important. They finally turned it around with this one.

    10
    I was more than dissapointed at the episode before this as I felt it had wasted about half an hour of my life. It seemed like a chore to keep watching.
    However this episode I thoroughly enjoyed. The time travelling plot twist was well worked out and provided more pre island connections between characters.
    Also this episode finally started revealiing some heafty answers, albeit while causeing more queries. It was revealled that the time perception from on the island differs from that else where in the world. While 815 survivors have been on the island for 96 days the rest of the world has only been missing them for 94 days.
    This explains why Daniels experiment from a couple of episodes back took a couple hours minutes longer to reach the island than expected.
    The side effects of travelling to and from the island also provide a good reason the the exact heading we hear about to leave the island.
    Hope there are more like this to come.
  • Over-rated (again) but non the less a great episode, currently the best of the season at the moment

    8.3
    Good episode, one of Desmond's better flashbacks, theres non of that whimsical bumbling about regaining honor, and while it's an episode that is a little confusing, it was interesting and makes you think, it feels more in line with lost than the last episode which seemed to be getting from A to B and sitting around eating up air time, pretty much most this episode kept my attention without any major groans raised.

    Again, while stuff is being explained, or at least hinting to an explanation, or at least, some small sense of what is going on, you get the plot twist at the end, were as before with kates, and bens (man on the boat) twist felt sorta cheap and random (still to be explained) the plot twist was better fleshed out in this episode, all in all a great episode, wouldn't rank it in the top 5, but as with most lost episode's, it's new, so people overate it heavily by 1+/2+ marks.
  • Desmond and Sayid get to the frater but Desmond is experiencing some weird side effects of getting off the island.

    10
    Well this was another great episode. Really nice how they switched between the 2 Desmonds well let's say here and in the past. The time travelling concept really could explain a lot if they use it well so I have my hopes up. I also wonder who their secret helper is? It couldn't be the pilot of the helicopter or could it? Or maybe it is the spy of Ben? Ah all these questions make Lost so great to watch.

    I wonder how much slower the time goes on the island than in the real world? Cause when they get off the island maybe only weeks will have past so that is certainly not that much and makes it more credible that the Oceanic 6 survived the crash, cause surviving for months on an island seems a little long but just for 3 weeks seems more accepteble and stuff.
  • After watching "the constant", i cried.A lot.Still crying,because i know that "LOST" will end 2010.Best series ever, at least the best I've ever watched.

    10
    After watching "the constant", i cried.A lot.Still crying,because i know that "LOST" will end 2010.Best series ever, at least the best I've ever watched.Love conquers all time,space and "lost" minds.The story of Desmond and Penelope reminds me a lot the story of Ulysses and his Penelope.Ulysses joined the Greek army? and fought the Trojans on a ten year long war.But the story that made Ulysses an "eternal" character,was the ten eventful years it took him to return home after the Trojan War.Ulysses' Penelope was waiting for her great love to come back home,always faithfull.I don't know if someone else thought of that story too(writers?) but Ulysses made it home to his Penelope.I hope that's the case here too.
  • Desmond experiences side effects during the helicopter ride, which causes him to time travel back and forth between the past and the present. In order to put an end to it, he must find a "constant"--someone or something familiar from each period in time.

    9.7
    God, what a season this has been. I mean, in only five episodes, the show has returned to the glory of season one with tight pacing, suspense, character development, emotion, and plenty of surprises. This episode only solidifies my opinion that LOST is one of the greatest pieces of work to ever hit the television screen.

    Last night's episode was a wonderful Desmond episode, as his "time traveling" is explored in greater depth, and we learn that he is not the only one experiencing this phenomenon. His interaction with Penny was truly touching.

    After the somewhat shaky third season, LOST has returned with a vengeance, challenging viewers with its puzzling mysteries, but never abandoning the soul of the series--its characters.
  • A little questionable with the time periods but who cares? The romance at the end is the reason this is the first season 4 episode I rewatched four times already.

    8.4
    The two things in this episode is the romance between Penny and Desmond and a new time travel plot point.

    I wasn't as much as a fan of the time travel. The rules for who's affected by the fracture of time and how they're affected seemed shifty and so did the rules for the consequences of changing the past. The shifts in time were suspiciously convenient, but that's a mixed blessing b/c it would be aggravating if they weren't.
    It looks like we met Ben's man on the boat who destroyed the communications. Why else would an actor from 3:10 Yuma have a role if it wasn't going to have its own arc?

    This episode had my favorite ending of season 4 so far. What a great emotional scene to close with. They didn't close with a big shocker which I liked because I was starting to become more aware of the fact that the last two seconds of episodes are always a great twist. It was refreshing to have the ending simply be a beautiful, emotional scene. Even more, it didn't have to be a tragic scene for once! I can only hope feebly that the writers spare just this romance from tragedy but for now we have a beautiful long distance scene.
  • Loved "The Constant".

    9.9
    This review will probably seem short to the other reviews that have been submitted on this site... but anyway, on to the point. Desmond episodes have always been unique and essential to Lost, even if at first I didn't really think they were that good. The whole time travel scheme was well used and not in the least cliche the way the writers used it in this episode... the last part was very well acted and stuff... it was very romantic and blah blah blah with all that drama with the phone call but the end was what really made the episode rule, the whole "Desmond is my constant" was really good... so yea. Awesome episode!=)
  • In the latest installment of Lost we find our good friend from the Swan, Desmond, jumping between his present self and himself from 1996, during which he was in the Army.

    10
    First, I'd like to start by saying that if you think this is a "filler" episode, and didn't lend to further plot development, did you even watch the same show? Crappy writing? Bad Acting? All ridiculous claims, are you people having bigger annurism's than Minkowski? Having said that, this episode is nothing but win. Things we've learned this episode:
    1. Why and how Desmond has his "flashes"
    2. Yes in reality there is a spy on the boat, Ben wasn't just lying to save his behind.
    3. The need for those mysterious injections. Rousseaus' crew didn't get sick, they went crazy, suffering the same thing as Desmond. This is why Desmond and Kelvin had to inject themself's daily, in order to keep the flash's at bay.(theory)
    4. Why you need to be asleep, coming to and fro the island, ala Juliet in Not In Portland.
    5. Charles Widmore's interest in the Black Rock
    6. We also learned of new characters, which, oh my god, will probably be used in future episodes to further the plot. Oh no this can't be plot advancement!

    Anyway, this episode was written brilliantly, if you didn't tear up or almost tear up when Desmond finally got to talk to Penny, well then your stronger than me. This is what fans of the show have been waiting for since the season 2 finale. It was particulary emotional because it was at this moment in which Desmond, a man willing to sail around the world for it, had found redemption after leaving Penny 8 years ago. Desmond centric episodes always seem to be particulary well written and always leave you with a sense, well some sense, of the bigger picture. This episode is no exception. If this episode, didn't fulfill your expectations then your not a fan. Those of you expecting more, remember what Ben said (paraphrase) , "I've had to put up with you for as long as i can remember, and it's required a trememndous amount of patience." Patience, a theme of the show, try it sometime.
  • Enigma continues growing in Lost when Desmond goes back and forward from the future to the past.

    10
    If everyone thought there was a problem with the island just don't try to get out of it because it doesn't get any better. Seems like the island is trapped is some kind of space time barrier and time goes way to slowly there or way to fast perhaps ? Anyway Desmond is trapped in a time trap and his only way out as it couldn't have been other way is Penny , that acts like her constant.There is a Lost friend in the boat and if he/she is who I think he/she is I am gonna kill every person that started a topic without the word "Spoiler".
  • Finally an episode as good as the 1st Season episodes.

    9.3
    I've been having a go at Lost for quite some time now but thankfully painfully waiting for a great episode like this one has been worth it.

    Since episode 2 of this season, Lost has been getting better and better with the Island storylines and some interesting twists from the flash-forwards always keeping the watercooler well crowded.

    I always look forward to Desmond's back-story and putting Desmond '96 into Desmond '04 to try to get into contact with Penny or else he'll die, that added little twist made the episode unique and interesting throughout.

    With Michael's return possibly being soon and maybe a Locke back(or forth??)story, things should get pretty interesting.
  • A very important episode regarding Desmond's dealings with time and place.

    9.7
    This, in general, was a great episode. We learn a little bit about time on the island, time off the island, and how they may be related to each other. We also get another glimpse at Desmond's abilities to jump around in place and time in his consciousness. There is also a key part of this episode where Desmond finds something he's been looking for while on the island. The only beef I have with this episode is the cliffhanger at the end. I don't really think it was very cleaver (compared to previous cliffhangers) and I think the writers could have done better. Other than that this episode follows LOST's ability to never disappoint.
  • The best episode of the season to date

    9.0
    Ever since his introduction in "Live Together, Die Alone", the producers have noted that the romance between Desmond and Penelope Widmore was at the heart of the Lost mythology. This episode continues to explore the truth behind that statement. For all that the survivors of Oceanic 815 experience the oddities of the island, Desmond's fate has been wrapped around them for years, and his story sheds light on several long-standing mysteries.

    His connection to the Widmores, for instance, has led to important revelations about the Hanso Foundation and the man behind the infamous Dharma Initiative. This episode connects some important dots. The Black Rock, the landlocked ship known to the survivors since the first season, now becomes a source of information about the island and its effects. A navigator's journal was found in Madagascar seven years after the disappearance of the Black Rock, and that navigator was a man named Hanso.

    The journal is eventually purchased by Charles Widmore, a businessman with ties to the Hanso Foundation, and one would imagine that the approximate location of the island was mentioned within its pages. This continues to add fuel to the flame of the theory that Widmore, who sponsored the race that eventually led Desmond to the island, intentionally wanted him trapped there to keep him from Penny. How he is treated moving forward should put the matter to rest.

    Regardless, all the suggestions still point to Widmore, the remnants of the Dharma Initiative, and elements of the Hanso Foundation as the authority behind the "rescue" expedition. One would also assume that Matthew Abbadon's organization is a part of that overall effort. Certainly they knew enough about the island (again, probably from the journal) to include Daniel Faraday on the team.

    Daniel's background in fringe physics, as expected, tie into the odd temporal properties of the island itself, stemming from the powerful electromagnetic source below the remnants of the Swan Station. This ties directly into the events of "Flashes Before Your Eyes" and begins to explain, to some degree, Desmond's ability to predict the future. Because he is "unstuck in time" (thank you, Kurt Vonnegut), Desmond's consciousness is not anchored to normal perception.

    For example, during the third season Desmond in the "present" was seeing possibilities of the future, all surrounding the fate of Charlie. What happens in this episode seems to be related, though in a more generalized manner. In this case, Desmond in the "past" becomes entangled with the physical presence of Desmond in the "present". Both situations appear to stem from an induced separation between conscious mind and physical body.

    In fact, this could explain Daniel's memory issues. Desmond points out that Daniel has been conducted his experiments with time without a shield over his head. Perhaps the net effect of the radiation/EM field exposure has been a dissociation of his memories. He wouldn't necessarily remember meeting Desmond in the first place, despite the warning in his own journal. Desmond is now important to Daniel beyond his field of study; it could get very interesting if Daniel is forced to choose between Desmond and the true goals of the "rescue party".

    Henry Ian Cusick delivers another powerful performance, easily handling the difficulty of the material. His devotion to Penny has always been apparent, but this episode goes a long way towards demonstrating her own dedication to him. Whatever might have happened in "Flashes Before Your Eyes", Penny still trusts Desmond enough to overlook his rather stalker-ish behavior. Their phone conversation is one of the most emotional moments of the series, and it is very well earned.

    So much time is spent on Desmond that the rest of Team Shepherd barely gets any screen time. The exception is Sayid, who continues to get the kind of attention he's deserved for quite a while. Sayid's loyalty to Desmond is effectively portrayed, and it shows how dedicated Sayid is to his friends and allies. It's also good to see his previously-established technical skills applied to the situation.

    Similarly, Juliet continues to support Jack and his authority on the island, especially with the new arrivals. Daniel doesn't seem to be much of a problem, since his personal goals often appear to override his more nefarious orders. Charlotte, on the other hand, definitely treats the survivors as a threat, and her attitude communicates the dubious nature of her real mission as surely as the behavior of the crew on the "rescue boat". The stage has definitely been set for conflict in the very near future.

    This episode is the latest evidence of the writing staff's renewed sense of purpose. The narrative has been moving forward at a measured but substantial pace, and now that the format has been expanded to include flash-forwards and other unusual perspective changes, the conventions of the series are no longer an impediment. In fact, this season has shown a very strong start, possibly better than any start to a season since the beginning of the series. Hopefully the post-writers'-strike episodes will maintain the same quality.
  • TRUELY AMAZING EPISODE!! One of the best episodes of Lost!

    10
    Excellent episode. The time-traveling thing was great! You can speculate much when you see this episode, like this one:

    "The island is the key to the time travel. Entering the atmosphere at different bearings is what causes the mind to jump into different time periods, and Daniel is the person who has unlocked that mystery....also (and this is my thought here), this could be the reason we see him crying when he sees the footage of the Oceanic plane crash - he hasn't been there yet, but his mind has already experienced the events and is causing him to have an emotional response to the footage. To me, that denotes that things don't turn out so great. More evidence: Hurley -He mentions to Sayid that they can hear music from "another time."

    Jack..in the future - talking about his father being alive? Is he having flashes? When he tells Kate they have to go back - Does he mean back to the island? Or back in time? Hmm

    Sawyer even said something is season one that has always stuck with me -To Kate: I made this wish four years ago.

    The whispers and hallucinations are a result of traveling into and being trapped in the doorway between worlds (which is the island). This is why they envision people and things that are not there -voices that are not real -they are all things that the islands atmosphere "receives" from other times because it is traveling between. It is a tesseract."

    This theory is VERY good, but lengthy, so I really suggest that you all read it for yourselves so we can discuss...it gets into Danielle's crew members - remember, they had the sickness?; Claire's psychic seeing events from an alternate timeline, etc. Also, it includes a line I'd forgotten about where Ben tells Locke that the island is hidden "even from God."
  • As you can see from the other reviews, this episode was quite spectacular by consensus. But what does it tell us about the bigger picture?

    8.5
    There have been many reviews as to the content of this episode, so I do not wish to venture into this subject matter.
    There were, however, many interesting points to this episode.

    Firstly, when Mr. Widmore is bidding for the Black Rock logbook thing it is said that was the only thing left of the wreckage. Presumably, this means they found the boat underwater, much like they found Oceanic Flight 815 underwater. Somehow, both are intact on the island. At this point the issue of a time differential comes into play.
    The helicopter should have taken 20 minutes to get to the boat on the given bearing, so we will assume this to be true in real time. For those on the island, it was over a day. A ratio of something like 20:1440 (minutes for Desmond and minutes for Jack) could be introduced to partially explain other events. For example, perhaps it is the case that they are in a time where the island exists (maybe in the future from a volcano underwater forming the island, maybe in the past when an island still existed) and thus why their plane, for them at least, is not underwater. Someone might also wish to examine how the same person who appeared to Juliet and recruited her onto the island was seen by Ben in the jungle as a child can be true. It seems to point to some kind of time differential, though I do not know how.

    There is also a point to make about how the Daniel at Oxford says that the future cannot be changed. This is seen to be false from Desmond's point of view as he manages to obtain Penny's phone number and tell her to wait for Dec. 24, which she does, allowing him to live. One might argue that this had already been going to happen, so infact Desmond changed nothing, but this is fairly incomprehensible based on how he appeared to actively be in the same mind and changing his past. The point of contention is how the island Daniel appears to not know who Desmond is when they are talking on the phone ("we met yesterday") and doesn't seem overly concerned that it is Desmond in distress. However, it is revealed at the end of the episode that he remembers the encounter and has written a note to himself regarding his own constant: Desmond. This plot device was the only misgiving in the episode - he appeared to not remember him, but then it turned out he did. Somewhat of a gimmick if I haven't totally misunderstood.

    An interesting episode for the development of the programme as a whole in my opinion.
  • Full of suspense, confusion, and drama- Exactly how Lost should be, "Brutha."

    10
    With Lost, it is all about the characters and the mysteries, and the drama that unfolds around the shows strengths. Though many characters just suck you in with a well written and superbly acted storyline, there is one character who made such a great impact when he was added to the cast in Season 2, and that is Desmond Hume.

    Desmond's tale bookended Season 2 so well and once season 3 added him as a cast regular, the creators really put his character's importance at a new level. Learning of his tearful tale of being separated from his true love Penelope for many years, as well him having one of the most intriguing abilities since Locke gained back his ability to walk, Desmond quickly rose to fan favorite status.

    Now, with "The Constant", the Lost creators have weaved a tale with Desmond that really grasps the whole suspense and wonder that they have established in the fourth season, as well as using what we already love about episodes with Desmond, and concluding with the single most satisfying moment ever to happen in Lost thus far. The combination of drama, suspense, and acting is exemplary of the show as a whole, and a new bar has been set for future episodes to reach.
  • Desmond's newest affliction.

    8.8
    The Constant further substantiates the concept that the island exists in a time bubble. As enthralled as I am by this exciting plot element, the variables involved at times makes me cross-eyed.

    I picture an invisible hemisphere symetrically encasing the island above the surface. Besides going under it via submarine, there's only one access point allowing for passage through the bubble. Passing through any other point results in dangerous side effects, illustrated by this episode.

    The helicopter passes through and the time shift is evident. In one moment it is flying through a storm at dusk. The next moment it's landing on the freighter in clear conditions in the middle of the day.

    Sayid and Frank pass through uneffected, but Desmond experiences said side effects. Those exposed to high levels of radiation or electromagnetism seem to be at risk, as per information divulged by Dan. Desmond had been seriously exposed when he activated the failsafe in the Hatch releasing the electromagnetic pressure, which initially caused him to go back in time resulting in a faint awareness of the future being that he had already lived it. Based on the laws of Desmonds new affliction, does his awarness now cease?

    Desmond does not physically time travel. He goes catatonic while his consciousness shifts between 1996 and 2004. As the time between shifts begin to increase, it renders the mind unstable, ultimately leading to an aneurysm. The key to avoiding this fate is to stabilize the mind with a constant, most notably a person to be unchangingly faithful and dependable.

    Does Desmond's actions in the past alter the future? According to Dan circa 1996, no - the future cannot be changed. In 2004, Dan discovers an interesting entry in his notes. Should something go wrong, Desmond would be his constant. Was the twist in the end supposed to be that the memorandum wasn't there before, and it had now appeared because of Desmond's visit? Bear in mind that the visit that was orchestrated by future Dan in the first place. So what really came first?

    On board, they meet Minkowski, the man they've been communicating with since Jack first made contact. Recently Minkowski hasn't been able to come to the phone and now we know why. He has been suffering the same effects as Desmond. Him and another officer just couldn't resist sneaking a peek at the island, so they hopped aboard some vessel and passed through the bubble.

    My one gripe in all this is that this maneuver seems forced. Feels too convenient for the purpose of storytelling to already have somebody experiencing what Desmond is going through. The mutinous act of these two men gives the impression of an insubordinate crew, and a mutinuous freighter was the opposite of what I was expecting. Not to mention that now I'm expecting to find out exactly what radiation they were exposed to in order to experience the side effects. No harm no foul though, I'll get beyond this.

    I found it nice that the episode also featured moments aside from the brainbending time concepts. Simpler nuggets that I could really sink my teeth into such as the auction. Widmore wins Hanso's diary of the accounts of the Black Rock. WHAT? Awesome!

    I'm also eagerly waiting for someone to post a screen shot of the man peering through the binoculars up in the control room of the freighter. I'm sure I wasn't the only one to notice him. Was he the captian? Was he Ben's man? Was he anyone we know?

    Good stuff.
  • Compelling story-telling. Serious answers.

    9.0
    How have the Lost writers managed to fit an episode this good at this point in the season? The last episodes that packed this kind of emotional wallop were "The Beginning of the End" and "Greatest Hits." The last ones that added this much to the mythology were "Through the Looking Glass" and "Confirmed Dead." Notice those are all season premieres and finales. When the episode began, I was skeptical about a Desmond-centric story. His stories tend to pull away from mysteries that have been developing. And despite last week's flop, the season has gotten off to a good start with a lot of intriguing directions. But the fact that stories about Desmond are told without regard to stories about everyone else is what made this episode great.

    In this self-contained narrative we had loads of theories about the lost island either confirmed or denied. For example, apparently it is still 2004 off the island. BUT time does bend around the island so that you can leave shore at dusk (is it me or has it been a long time since we saw a sunset or sunrise on the island???) and arrive at the freighter 20 minutes later in the middle of the day. We learn that Desmond is in fact time travelling. No guess work here. All it leaves to question is what happened to future Desmond who knows who Sayid is and remembers the hatch imploding? It's possible he's drifting between dimensions same as past Desmond. Maybe the constant allowed past Desmond to stop the drifting and now their roles are more permanent. ?

    Who knows. The point is there are some answers but by the end of the show we don't care because the Lost writers recognize that there is a more important story to tell. Desmond and Penny's story of forgiveness and hope is central to Lost. This is where Kate dropped the ball last week, but picks up right where Hurley left off in his mourning of Charlie. I am interested to see what Daniel's ultimate role in things is. He likes his job and is good at it despite the assertions of the self-important freighter doctor. It seems his job is important to the physical properties of the island. Yet when we were introduced to him, it was his emotional connection to the island that first drew him to this mission. Frank's role is also becoming interesting since it doesn't take him a moment's hesitation to help Sayid keep his buds out of the "sick bay." Desmond and Sayid's "friend" on the ship is either Ben's "man on their boat" or someone sent by Widmore to rescue, protect, or sabotage Desmond. Anyway, those are all interesting questions and we got a plate full of mouth watering answers for that obsessed fan in us that is caught up in the drama and mythology. But we also got an exceptional and compelling story that transcends themes central to Lost.
  • Outstanding episode in an outstanding season!

    9.7
    Well! In terms of favouritest episodes, this surely comes close to 'Stranger in a Strange Land'. Ok, ok... But isn't it a different program? The multitude of plots and threads seemingly thrown out at random in the first three seasons (and we had to work hard for a good number of them) are finally beginning to coalesce. And coalesce well. The flashforwards have transformed the series, and that's on from what was already one of the best things on TV. (Though, had it continued for much longer, it would have started to approach the rambling point.) But now we have a thrilling focus in the form of: the oceanic 6; Jacob and the islanders; Ben; (real answers to) the nature of the island and the various groups tied into it... Who even cares about the monster at the minute?! Oh I don't know, there are a load I'm sure I've forgotten just now. Oh yeah - Desmond and Penny. So, 9.7 because 0.3 was all I could bring to deduct for the inclusion of a red laser time traveling contraption (these new models seem to have a lot less whirring flashing bits), but the backhanded compliment is that it would normally be a lot, lot more. But ****, it was worth it! Won't bother with specifics, or rather, I can't - I'll need to watch it again! But I loved the Tovard Hanso journal reference - now we can guess at the origins of the Hanso Foundation. That'll do for the meantime. This, tossed flippantly in the midst of so much else comes close to defining this season to date. Even last week's, which at the minute is probably the weakest of the season, vindicated all that horrendously protracted Kate-on-the-run crap. The suspense as to the reason for the infamy of the Oceanic 6 has been brilliantly built-up. But I could ramble on like the first three seasons! Only joking. Quite simply, this episode is possibly the best example so far of what makes Lost such an outstanding program to watch.
  • Wow, just wow. Season 4 so far was really good, but this episode really raised the bar.

    9.5
    Wow, just wow. Season 4 so far was really good, but this episode really raised the bar.

    There were a lot of important things in this episode. We saw some turbulence which effected Desmond badly. He started going between 1996 and 2004. And after he talked to Daniel he told him to find him in the past. In the past Daniel told him that he needs to find a constant, and he immediately found that Penelope is his constant. He goes and search for her and tells her to give him her number and he will call her on Xmas Eve 2004. He does exactly that and we have one very emotional moment between Desmond and Penelope.

    Before the end we see Daniel seeing his journal and in it finding that Desmond Hume is his constant. This raises some more questions.

    Also Mr. Whitmore bids on a journal from the Black Rock which was owner by Mr. Hanso ... This is just making things more and more interesting.
  • A stunning episode which answers some questions nicely.

    9.2
    Desmond is the only character I really feel for. Every one of the survivors appears to have an awful life off the island with nothing to look forward to and each have done pretty bad things (to an extent). But Desmond has someone he really loves off the island. And she has been trying to find him for three years now. The tears that were threatening to leave my eyes as he made contact with Penny in this episode will stay there until the real contact comes and I would say that only that episode when it arrives could top this one.
    All episodes of season four so far have been excellent and this one raises the bar higher. Mainly, I would say, because of Cusick's superb performance as Desmond. He (and to a lesser extent Naveen Andrews), is arguably the best actor in Lost and any episode centred on his character is always a joy to behold. I only hope this is not the beginning of the end of Desmond's storyline.
    Any story revolving around time travel is bound to come up with paradoxes and the like so I've not bothered thinking too much about that aspect of the story except to ponder the Constant. I didn't fully understand why Daniel couldn't be Desmond's Constant if all it takes is a phone call. He spoke to Daniel on the island in 2004 and in Oxford in 1996. Daniel did say something about the Constant being something you love but then why would he write in his journal that if all fails then he could use Desmond as a Constant? Does he love Desmond? He hardly knows the guy - or maybe he knows him better than we think now that they have contacted each other in 1996 now. Too complicated.
    A little thing they threw into this episode was a wonderful reappearance of Charles Widmore winning an auction of the first mate's journal from the ship The Black Rock, currently owned by someone named Hanso! I hope to see more of Widmore now that contact has been made by Penny and this reintroduction of Hanso and The Black Rock could indicate that we're going to find out a bit more of the more ancient history of the island.
    Overall this was a superb episode and I can only expect next week to be a disappointment as I'll be expecting too much and the focus will be away from Desmond's very interesting storyline.
  • Oh my God!!! I cried! My love for Desmond & Penny is my constant! What an amazing episode *Spoilers*

    10
    I just finished it, my hands are cold, I'm emotionally fragile (I cried!), I have goose pimples, and I'm trying to recover my senses to write this review.

    I loved the first and second season of Lost, but when I really got hooked was with Live together, die alone and the introduction of Desmond/Penny's story… So, for those who have seen this episode, can imagine how I'm feeling.

    First of all let me get the romantic side of the episode out of my system! Awwwwwww I cried with that scene between those two! They're so intense; they've been through so much! They have to end up together, and living and fine… I don't think I could deal with the death of Penny or Desmond… It would be too much… Penny is Desmond's constant for God's sake!!! If that's not romantic, I don't know what is!... Although if you think that Desmond is Daniel's constant, it kind of kills the romance, which leads me to… Lost business! We got a lot of information! • Jack is now aware of the island time problem and possible side effects… (Is that why only six of them could leave?)
    • Daniel really knows what he's doing there, and I think he will a main key to unfold the island secrets… I love him • I missed Miles and wanted to see what happened with his grenade… anyway… he can hold it another week.
    • On the ship they know they have a mole, which kind of screws up a little bit Ben's plans… • Mr. Widmore has been interested on the Black Rock since 1996? WOW! It smells like conspiracy to me… I think this kind of episodes can be loved (By people like me) or hated by those who want to see every character every episode, but the only thing for sure is that it causes a strong reaction from whoever watches it and for me, was one of my all time favourites… rewatchable, amazing and incredibly well written!
  • A really emotional story... and so well done

    9.7
    Oh, I was so surprised of this episode. I had so high hopes towards it but nothing prepared me for this - for the emotions this episode will have. Usually lost have the action and excitement side, then also something the sci-fi effect.. this time, there was all that - the boat, the mystical thing with time as Desmond started to blink between different times.. but also the emotional side.. specially the end - super camera work, the way those images changed.. and it made me cry. Oh, it was just so beautiful.

    And it was not only Desmond as after this episode, I have totally different opinion of Faraday. It was a perfect episode.
  • Much is revealed in this poignant, powerful, and revealing Desmond-centric episode. Possibly one of the best episodes ever, this episode will amaze you.

    10
    To say that this episode is "Exactly Why I Watch This Series" is an understatement. Just about every positive comment in the classification box can apply to this episode of Lost. It very well may be the best episode they have had thus far. It was exciting, revealing, touching, and it held your attention. I was getting irritable during the commercials, it was that good.

    The episode started with Desmond and Sayid heading to the freighter with Frank via helicopter. Frank explains that Daniel told him he must maintain an exact bearing to and from the freighter, this includes flying through a fierce thunderstorm. The storm knocks them off bearing slightly which causes Desmond to travel back in time to 1996. This happens several times throughout the episode. At this point Desmond is still in the army and is aware that he is moving between 2004 and 1996. The crew of the freighter (who is displeased that the survivors are on the boat) takes Desmond to the sick bay where he finds George Minkowski strapped to a bed. George is also going back and forth between times.

    Frank lets Sayid use his phone to contact Jack and company at the beach and explains Desmond's situation. Daniel is able to help Desmond by arranging a meeting in the past at the University in the UK where Daniel works. Daniel explains by veering off course, Desmond's conscious is going back and forth between time periods, if he doesn't stop this, he will die. The way to stop it is by having a "constant" something that is in common in both periods in time; Desmond uses Penny as his constant. He calls her at one point and she rebuffs him, he tries to call again, but her number was disconnected. He gets her address from her father who is bidding on a journal from the Black Rock! We also find that the owner of the Black Rock was an ancestor of Alvar Hanso! Desmond tracks down Penny and promises that he will call her on Xmas Eve of 2004 if she gives him the number. After George dies, Sayid is able to rig up a phone and Desmond contacts Penny as promised. After a touching moment and an exchange of "I love you's" the battery dies. Desmond who had previously had amnesia in 2004 is able to recognize Sayid again, the constant is established, and Desmond lives on. It cuts back to Daniel who is looking in his journal at an entry that states something to the effect of using "Desmond Hume as his constant".

    This episode had everything; it was paced extremely well, excellent direction, and perfect cinematography. The rapid flashbacks and flash-forwards may confuse or overwhelm some, but it was a great plot device and was absolutely perfect for the episode. The acting was top notch with Henry Ian Cusick putting on an Emmy worthy performance as Desmond. You could literally feel his emotion, his despair, desperation and his true love for Penny. Naveen Andrews was wonderful as always and used Sayid's stoic nature to good effect; his performance was purposefully scripted to be underscored and was very powerful. Fisher Stevens was outright creepy as George Minkowski, which was a really nice touch. The episode was also incredibly revealing with the admissions of time travel, the link between Widmore and Hanso, the idea that Daniel and Charlotte know more than they are letting on (though Daniel does give more info, he is ok in my book-Charlotte needs shot). It was also good to see Desmond and Penny speak; it was an emotional scene that likely made many people misty-eyed.

    Overall this was an amazing episode; enough cannot be said about it. This is how Lost should be done; it carried you throughout a spectrum of emotions and was interesting from start to finish. It was an episode I hated to see end. Kudos to the cast, crew, and writers for such a phenomenal work-easily some of the greatest television I have ever watched.
  • What's the Big Deal?: Mediocre Episode

    7.8
    I have been watching lost since the pilot, I have been there through the high points and the low points. I must say that the beginning of Season Four so far has been a major low point. I read some of the other reviews on here calling this the best episode ever, but for me it was just another filler episode. Okay, I did think the whole flashing back and forth thing was cool, but the plot wasn't advanced at all. Okay, Desmond is my favorite character, but the whole idea of him finding his "constant" was a failed attempt at re-establishing the Desmond/Penny soap opera. The best thing about this episode was it did not contain another one of those lame "cliffhangers" where the writers attempt to cover boring episodes with random future connections to get people excited. So, thank you, "The Constant", for that. Maybe people that call this the best episode ever are suffering from "Lost" withdrawal. I like character development as much as anyone else, but this was poorly written and, I must say, a mediocre episode.
  • If I'm going to berate them when they do poorly, then I must praise them when they do well. They have constantly been getting better and this was outstanding. Episodes like this is why I watch Lost! I actually give this one a 12.

    10
    One quick non-sequestor, the actor who played the ships doctor was also the hidden witness in Eli Stone. Anyway, this episode had Desmond "unstuck" in time. A term I first heard used in Sliders to explain why Jerry O'Connel and his brother left the show. After leaving the island, Desmond's consciousness jumps back and forth through time ala Captain Picard in "All Good Things". The only difference is Desmond is going to die if he doesn't find a "constant" something or someone he cares about in both time frames, 1996 and 2004. There is another person going through the same thing but it was obvious he was going to die. I liked him having to go back in time to find Daniel. Then Daniel and Desmond in the office were excellent.

    While Desmond isn't a survivor, it seems his character and story are an essential linchpin into what is going on. Also, the effects of the island on the space-time continum are awsome. It explains why the others went by sub and you had to be unconsious for the experience. Desmonds jumping, finding Penny and making the call were extremely well done and expertly acted! I was feeling for both of them. The scene where he's asking for the phone number had me screaming, "Just give him your number!"

    Then the call. Extremely well done! Extra bonus points for making something obvious still worth watching! But what really got me was in the end, Daniel rifling through his book and having the Desmond as his constant notation.

    Lost is back on track with a vengence! I can't wait to see what happens next.
  • Seriously....This was one of the best if not THE best LOST episode ever!

    10
    WOW! The complexity and geniality of this episode is hard to describe. The one whose mind did not get completely blown away by this...well they just didn`t understand a thing. :D
    It`s a Desmond centric. Desmond`s episodes are always so mind blowing but this one: WOW. This is my favorite all time lost episode, even better than Through the looking glass.
    Time traveling, this is just brilliant and the way this was executed was so perfect. The momentum and intensity of the episode was overwhelming. The "constant idea" was amazing. Nothing big happened on the island but who cares LOL. Looks like Dan also have the problem and his constant will now be Desmond.
    Also, looks like someone on the boat helped Sayid and Desmond.... clearly, Ben`s spy. I think (just a thoery) it`s Michael. And yeah, little of Jack, no Kate, none of that ANNOYING love triangle, just the most believable Lost love story: Desmond and Penny. So, that was an Epic episode...time traveling is even more exciting that flash forward. Last week was a kinda letdown but this week was THE best Lost episode IMO.
    At the very start of the episode, I had a cup of tea in the hand, I was about to drink it.....I end up drinking it some 15 minutes after the episode:D
    Anyone who are rating this episode less than 9, I respect your opinion but hell...you`ve got a problem and you are simply impossible to please.
  • Just some side-thoughts/theory here, but i just love it (and agree) how this show exists on so many levels (time-travelling, twilightzone between the living and dead, scienitific experiments etc).

    9.7
    remember at past seasons how often someone on the island saw something come alive out if his/her own past, like Kate seeing a white horse, Ecko saw his brother etc... you would almost have to pose the question after this ep. to what degree this time-travelling and interferences in perception of time play a primordial role in the whole mystery behind Lost. Maybe it is basically an experiment coming from the mind of Farady and it was Desmond's goal (as planned before) to turn the key in the hatch so it would implode -and release alot of radiation- as part of the experiment, done somewhere on an island that is already isolated from the world maybe by some barriers). That would explain what the new expeditors are doing there, and why it's 'not exactly their main objective' to rescue the survivors of Flight 815. But then again, what about Dharma, Ben's group, the old island inhabitants, Jacob etc... so many varaibles in Lost it's almost impossible to make a theory about the whole picture, I guess it's a mixture of alot of weird and twisted storylines!

    And then we have Mr. Wildmoore paying so much for that painting of 'the black rock', definitely something relevant too...

    Oh and this was, like the other Desmond episodes quite outstanding, almost as good as Catch-22 (season 3) imo!
  • You can change the future !!

    10
    Be careful there maybe some spoilers

    Even though this episode looks like a break from all things that happened since the ship found this island but, it only make thing more complicated.
    As for Desmond and his story it shows that he`s more connected to the island and the Honso foundation and maybe the Dharma Initiontive more than we thought.
    It`s a truly amazing Desmond-centric episode, and it shows how strong his connection with Penny and how they still trust and care for each other.
    But the thing that made me wonder more than anything on this show is the message on Danial`s journal does it mean its all the way around ?! we`ll just have to wait & see.
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