There’s No Place Like Home

The overall design of Season 4 has been genius, as the introduction of flash forwards have set us up for a most unique of season finales. We’re building to a climax from both the past and the future, and the energy seems fittingly magnified. Yet for all the tension coming to a head on the island, two off-island scenes tonight really stood out for me: the reunification of the Oceanic 6 and their families on the tarmac here in Honolulu, and Claire’s mom revealing to Jack that he had (or has) a sister. The latter because it’s a reveal that we knew was inevitable, but was still so pitch perfect it had me holding my breath. Matthew Fox was fantastic, showing the brutal impact of the devastating news in his face, and still again we know things that Claire’s mom and Kate so far don’t. As for their arrival in Hawaii, it was a powerful reminder of how “LOST” defies expectations. Here’s a scene we all had in our heads as the last scene of the entire series: some, but not all, of the crash survivors make it off the island. Yet we still have two more seasons to go.

Jen, perhaps hardened after catching up on a week’s worth of e-mail, wasn’t about to cut the show too much slack. Who would ever believe Aaron is five weeks old? (Though babies on TV or in movies are always absurdly huge.) How is it that no one, Michael in particular, found all that C4 on the freighter until now? How can Kate, so muddled in everything else she does, still be such an expert jungle tracker? How is she not taken into custody the moment she stepped off the Coast Guard plane? And hadn’t we given up on “The Numbers”? But still, Jen cheered when Sun stood up to and undermined her father. And laughed when Hurley learned the vintage of the DHARMA crackers.

The last episode before the season finale always has it rough, usually packed full of disconnected setup for the big show to come. But apart from the musical montage where we visited each of the Oceanic 6 on the island — yes, indeed, they’re all over the place, and somehow need to end up together to escape— I thought “There’s No Place Like Home” was great.

I enjoyed Alpert’s on-island return, in yet another “you’re surrounded” jungle ambush with a surprisingly large crowd of surviving Others. Others that were again dressed in their grimy Season 2 rags, rather than suburban dwellers. Looks like they’re ready to rumble, the biggest island showdown since “The Purge.” And Ben’s mirror-flashing message and assertion that he always has a plan yanks us back to the world in which he’s always three steps ahead. I guess he hasn’t given up just yet.

And good ol’ fun-time Hurley, still holding his own between two Emmy winners, machine-gunning through questions that any sane person (or “LOST” fan) would ask. How do you move an island? Wouldn’t moving it bring the bad guys too? And the scene in the mansion where he finds a coconut and hears whispers was clever as hell. He escaped that freak-out opportunity only to end up staring at a cursed odometer. I’d begun to suspect “The Numbers” were a relic of the show’s tapdancing days, but with The Orchid and a moving island looming large, I guess they’re finding new life.

I’m more eager to see how Season 4 ends than I think I’ve been for any season prior… even Season 1, as we had nary an inkling about what was going on back then. My primary complaint is that we have to wait two weeks for it all to come together. And my biggest question is what the next act might bring.

Notes and Notions:

  • I loved that the Oceanic 6 arrived in Honolulu (and the cheesy luau theme for Hurley’s birthday party). A pity the view of Diamond Head was washed out a bit by the volcanic haze that’s been hanging over the islands for weeks.
  • Looks like Keamy’s last resort will take out the freighter, but whether that C4 is what torches the island, I’m not sure. It also looks like it’s still an extraction mission, as Frank says as much to Jack and Sawyer and the episode ends with Ben taking a gun butt to the head, not a bullet.
  • Who else does Sun blame for Jin’s death, apart from her father. Herself? Widmore? (Taking over a large company might be the first step in corporate warfare.) Jack? (She didn’t attend Christian Shephard’s funeral, though the rest of the Oceanic 6 did.)
  • I guess Jack learning that Claire is his sister is not what pushes him over the edge, or makes him want to go back. Because his brief bliss with Kate and long decline into madness has yet to happen. Unless Jack, like Sun, believes everyone else on the island is dead, only to later learn that they’re not?
  • Once again, the Oceanic 6 survival story includes two others who survived the crash but didn’t make it to rescue. Your guess is as good as mine as to who those two might be.
  • Speaking of the Oceanic 6 survival story, all season I’ve wondered how the world would react to finding out the wreckage at the bottom of the Sunda Trench was faked. Turns out it fits neatly into the lie being perpetrated off the island. Who crafted that lie is the question. In the cargo hold, it seemed Jack was most familiar with the story.
  • Speaking of the cargo hold, when Oceanic publicist Karen Decker goes back there, she smiles at someone toward the front of the plane before approaching Jack and friends. Who? Maybe Ben? Or someone else we know who’s not a crash survivor? Or am I imagining things?
  • It was nice to see Sayid and Nadia reunite, and apparently have some quality couple time. The glow is all the more bittersweet since we know things don’t turn out well for them.
  • Lucky rabbits feet turned up both in the cockpit of the Coast Guard plane and on the keys to Hurley’s Camaro. Again, the Orchid Station may bring with it some more rabbit folklore.
  • How did Claire’s mom come out of her coma? Will we see her, I wonder, visited by a ghostly Claire in a vision?
  • Favorite Lines: Hurley’s mom, “Jesus Christ is not a weapon.” Sawyer, “You don’t get to die alone.” And spoken like a true PR person, “That’s not the best branding as far as we’re concerned, but it’s catchy!”
  • Locations: The Oceanic 6 arrival was filmed out at Hangar 111 at Barber’s Point. Hurley’s Mansion was along Farmers Road in Kahala. Christian Shephard’s funeral was held at St. Patrick in Kaimuki.

What did you think? Call the LostLine at (808) 356-0127 or comment below.

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75 Responses to There’s No Place Like Home

  1. claudia says:

    Ryan & Jen,
    Love your podcast first time writing a comment. I have to say that I liked this episode a lot. It had so many great moments. My favorites I have to say had to be the Hurley moments, Specially when the reporter makes the comment about how for being gone for over a hundred days they looked very well nourished and Hurley’s reaction “is that directed to me dude” LOL moment. Keep up the good work I look forward to your podcast following every episode.

  2. John Fischer says:

    Connie in Alaska – I definitely heard Jack say 10 months also, which does put the funeral in July 2005. I guess that explains how Claire’s mother is well enough to be there although I thought she was in a permanent coma. I wonder why the delay in holding the funeral? Also, what’s up with the feds? Why was Kate not arrested at the airport in Honolulu or in LA when she attended Hugo’s party. Why the heck is she still not arrested 10 months later by the time of the funeral? The feds spent a lot of time and money chasing her down before the crash. Now they don’t seem to mind letting an accused murderer run around.

  3. camille says:

    @Nels- I don’t understand. If it is a coast guard plane and it was some big hasty pick up, how did they get all new clothes in their right sizes. Jack’s suit was practically tailor fit. Do the Coast Guard travel around with clean new trunks full of clothes and makeup in various sizes??

  4. Mike says:

    Suns meeting with her Dad is very important to how they will get back I think… The men who have a meeting with Dad mention 5 seperate banks… perhaps the survivors have pooled their money and will use Paik industries to battle widmore……. (I’ve always thought Paik was involved somehow).

  5. nels says:

    Camille, I think the whole story of the “Oceanic 6” and how they are clean with clothes and such is a part we haven’t gotten yet. We know they were certainly “briefed” on what their story should be but we don’t know why or by whom yet.

    Having them come back in a Coast Guard plane makes sense if the people who are behind the cover up want to portray the Oceanic 6 as being “rescued.” The people even have gone so far as to either doctor up a photo or to stage a photo of the Oceanic 6 being found by natives on the beach too. So obviously there is some big cover up going on. We just don’t know who is doing the covering up.

  6. NuckinFuts says:

    @ Connie & Mr. Z & more – – Wow…If this is a paradox / parallel universe then that could explain a few of these inconsistancies…in time, events, & coverup story.

    Time – I’m sure it would mess Jack & gang up now and then when they let their guard down a little with the coverup story. Also – – this could explain in part the non-growing Aaron…maybe he has “Alpert’s disease” ( although later he does get bigger for some reason. )

    Events – Perhaps in this parallel Claire’s mom woke up / was never in a coma.

    This would be a lot to deal with, but just a suggestion…

  7. Sally says:

    Your recaps always point out a few things that I’ve missed! Also really enjoy your comprehensive knowledge of past show details and theories. Haven’t been taping the shows to watch again, so glad they will re-run the last two episodes next week.

    Did Kate overhear Claire’s mom?

  8. tty says:

    Ryan, Jen, and Vicky,
    Regarding your observations that:
    “when Oceanic publicist Karen Decker goes back there, she smiles at someone toward the front of the plane before approaching Jack and friends. Who? Maybe Ben? Or someone else we know who’s not a crash survivor? Or am I imagining things?”

    In reviewing that scene again, there does appear to be someone sitting at the forward part of the cargo area in the Coast Guard C-130 who is not one of the O6. However, once the ramp goes down in Hawaii, and Hurley exits the plane first (without anyone else coming aboard), there is another Coast Guard crewmember seen in a flight suit who is standing inside the aircraft next to Karen Decker. He is not one of the pilots, so must be the loadmaster (standard crewmember on the HC-130H).

    Also, regarding nels’ and others’ comments about the O6 coming back to Hawaii in a Coast Guard rescue plane. I agree it isn’t really too plausible that the survivors would have been picked up by a rescue unit from Hawaii and flown directly back to Hawaii (for fuel considerations alone). Realistically, once they showed up on the Indonesian island, Oceanic would more likely have had them picked up and flown back to Australia to get them medical attention/ cleaned up (e.g. in Darwin) and then later flown them privately back to the West Coast, rather than Hawaii. I’m sure the only reason the scene was written/ shot the way it was is because the Barber’s Point Coast Guard unit was immediately available in Hawaii. There’s probably no more plot significance than that.

  9. Cody says:

    As far as the misterious person in the casket, I would have to agree that it must be Michael, as they all despise him for what he did, including his son and mother. On another note, do you think that the island let him die? Last we heard from Tom, “the island won’t let you die” he says to Michael back in New York.

  10. Becky says:

    What was the message the Ben received after sending the message with the mirror? We didn’t see Ben’s message, but saw the flashes back from the mountainside. Can anyone interpret the morse code mirror flashes?

    Also, who do you think he was signaling? He said to Locke “Who do you think?” Does he want Locke to infer “Jacob?”

  11. Tony says:

    Did anyone else think that one of the rocks on the ground marking Ben’s Dharma box looked like a statue-sized nose??? There’s a quick glimpse when Ben first stops and looks down, and then it’s the second rock that he moves out of the way.

  12. Bill says:

    When Sun announced she now had the controlling interest in her father’s business, I thought, “man she got some kind of settlement from Oceanic Air!”

    But remember — Paik’s executives reported that “someone” used five banks to pull off the “deal”. Aaron wouldn’t have gotten a settlement, but the other “five” Oceanic survivors pooled thier money to buy the controlling interest in Paik Enterprises for Sun, I think.

    I remember Claire’s mother being on life support with chances — slim or none — of recovery. In Hawaii, when she told Jack about Claire being his sister, was she a ghost or was she for real? I wish there was a way to keep the dead and alive straight.

  13. Tess says:

    I find it amazing how the writers have taken us from seeing Ben and the Others as a menacing, amoral group, to seeing them in this new almost heroic light. Ben said his people would be willing to give up their lives for the island, and now it seems he has put himself on the line again. How different is this Ben from the creepy, controlling monster who would kill Juliet’s lover because she belonged to him? Meanwhile Alpert and the remaining Others are (presumably) coming to Ben’s rescue having been summoned from the Temple by the flashy mirror to one last task. Suddenly I find myself cheering for the Others. Where do I sign up?

    I’ve been a Locke fan since season 1. He’s always done pretty much what I would have done. He’s my proxy on the show and it’s been a delight to watch him find his true purpose. I do hope if he’s still on the island during season 5, the show still focuses on him as well as Jack and Hurley’s attempts to re-find the island.

    I agree with those who find Sun’s takeover of her father’s company rather dubious. Someone suggested the ‘five banks’ implied that five survivors had chipped in, but I doubt this is the case. It is common practice in high finance to have several banks providing funding for a leveraged buyout, so that no single bank takes all the risk, but I think probably the writers wanted to imply that Sun had achieved her goal secretly by employing five banks to buy up shares independently, hiding her identity until the appropriate reveal. I’m not sure this is legally possible in reality – you’d surely have to announce a hostile takeover bid before taking a controlling interest, but let’s grant them poetic license.

    When are the writers going to find some purpose for Charlotte being in the show? So far she’s just been Faraday’s grumpy sidekick. Is she going to do some archeology? And Miles just looks shell-shocked right now. So much for the arrogant wisecracking!

    Jack’s reaction to learning about Claire was an astounding piece of acting. He had to show surprise, shock and despair whilst also avoiding looking at Aaron, or giving away that he knew Claire very well and was a lot more devastated by learning the truth than even Claire’s mother might have expected. And he pulled it off perfectly.

    How did super Kate become an expert jungle tracker when Sayid the military man is not? Isn’t it poor strategy to shout out to those following you that they should show themselves? Doesnt that just let them know that you don’t know where they are? Ah well, let’s not complain too much. There’s a larger plot at stake and it must be unbelievably tough to bring all those story arcs to their culmination in the right times and places with perfect emotional content.

    Great job. Again. Season 4 has just been incredible.

  14. helen says:

    @Tess: Kate learned her tracking skills from her dad which she has said since season 1.

  15. LostLou says:

    I heard Ryan and Jen on (I think) the Lost Mythos podcast, last week. It was great.
    Got to know our hosts a little better. Can’t wait to hear their take on this episode.

    There is probably not much we can infer from it, but I’m curious. They said the Oceanic Six was rescued after 108 days. What day do we think it is now? I think we had a pretty good idea what day it was on the Constant. I was just wondering how many days on the island do we have left.

  16. Bixby says:

    Sun wouldn’t need anyone to chip in. I would assume that perhaps she received another settlement from Oceanic for Jin.

  17. Tori says:

    Thanks for interesting thoughts, everyone. Good to be in the company of fellow addicts!

    – I’m wondering what deal could have been good enough to convince the Oceanic 6 to hew to such a big lie? Most/all of them seem to have enough character not to just accept gobs of money to maintain the fiction–but maybe I’m wrong.

    – I agree that Richard and Abbadon are opposing characters, at a high and apparently immortal level. If that’s the case, what would be Abbadon’s incentive for luring Locke to Australia? Presumably to get him on Oceanic Flight 815… with the thought that he’d die on it? While he seemed to have Locke’s best interests at heart during the hospital scene, it sure was ominous when he held his wheelchair at the top of the stairs.

    – I’m someone who really likes both Jack and Kate, though Kate sure has her morally ambiguous ups and downs. Interesting, though, that many people seem not to like them. Is it that Jack is pretty self-righteous– and Kate??

  18. Bryan says:

    Conventional thinking at the beginning of this series would have led us to believe that the final scene we would see, would be the Losties getting off the island. Here were are only about 2/3rds through and we see this scene. It’s just brilliant.

    I really cannot wait to see what it is that actually makes these 6 so frightened that they collectively decide to lie about what happened. Something fairly traumatic i think.

  19. wildy71 says:

    Rolondo – I thought the immaculate conception was when Mary was conceived as an infant, not when she got pregnant while still a virgin.

  20. paintergirl1 says:

    I’m not sure the feelings of fans towards Jack and Kate can be described as liked or disliked. Lost has such a compelling storyline, that I sometimes resent the necessary character development, since that takes away time that could be used on plot.

    Also, characters such as Ben, Locke, Walt, and Hurley all have more depth to explore in their characters than the Jack and Kate “are they going to get together or not” plot line.

    This is just my very humble opinion, but I think this is where some of the negative energy is coming from. Transplant these characters into another show, and they would be amazing. In comparison to the rest of Lost, however, they seem a little lackluster.

  21. Pete says:

    I got a screen shot showing clearly that there is someone sitting behind the O6 and he is not a crew member. Very interesting. Its dark but it either looks like Christian or the captain.

  22. Pete says:


    The Immaculate Conception is when the Virgin Mary conceived Jesus without having sex.

  23. Reg in WA says:

    The Immaculate Conception is the idea that Mary, the mother of Jesus, was herself conceived without original sin.

    Check out

    ‘In the Constitution Ineffabilis Deus of 8 December, 1854, Pius IX pronounced and defined that the Blessed Virgin Mary “in the first instance of her conception, … was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin.”‘

  24. Lindsay says:

    @ Paintergirl1 – You just hit the nail on the head with the Jack/Kate storyline. They are great actors and both interesting characters, but they lack that depth. Good comments!

  25. Mike says:

    Can anyone tell me about Richard? He does not age. From the time of Lockes and Bens birth till current, he has not aged.

    Also, the black man that told Locke to do a walk-about. Why did he have to ask Hurley if there were still others alive. And Jack asking Hurley if he told any one about the others still on the island.

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