Next: “The Variable” (Episode 5×14)

If the size of the post-thud headache is a reliable metric in evaluating the quality of an episode, “The Variable” may take top prize for Season 5. Jen and I are still trying to sort out the possibilities and impossibilities presented tonight. The man who preached emphatically that you can’t change the past finally returns, now emphatic that you can. Even our characters recognize the insanity of undoing everything that’s happened (essentially erasing the entirety of “LOST” to date). But just as Daniel Faraday gets rolling, he’s shot dead. By his mom. A mother who knew, in 2007, that he was sending his memory-addled son to that very fate.

My theory, such as it is? Faraday’s Jughead plan was doomed to failure, and will ultimately not change anything. But his death, his mother’s sacrifice, will instead be the key, the real “incident” that sets everything else in motion.

Why is Faraday wrong? Because he ended up telling Charlotte to leave the island, even though he didn’t want to, thereby closing the loop on one of his own “whatever happened, happened” moments. Because his supposedly radical conclusion — that people, and free will, are the key variables — is undercut by the fact that we’ve been shown that the meddling of our Losties in 1957 and 1977 were always part of the island’s history. And because, I think, we see him realize, with his last breath, what his mother was up to. He was never meant to go to the island to be healed or to save anyone. He simply had to die.

He simply had to die… for the first time. I’m struck by Eloise Hawking’s conversation with Penny, where she says with an obvious sense of wonder, “For the first time in a long time, I don’t know what’s going to happen next.” And she later tells Charles Widmore about sacrifice, about how she sent her son to the island knowing full well he would be killed (by her). Sacrificing her son, it seems, was something she only just barely found the strength to do. Something she’d never done before, which somehow allowed her to always know the future.

Yes, it’s still an attempt to change history, or change destiny, and I’m still not convinced it can be done. But if I ever suspected that Widmore and Hawking were playing at a wholly different level than any of the other characters, I’m convinced of it now. I only hope that whatever Hawking wants to change, it’s not erasing everything we’ve spent the last five years dissecting. That might be a bold move for the end of Season 5, but one that would ultimately be disheartening.

No question, the big questions raised in “The Variable” are worthy of a long conversation. But character wise, story wise, plot wise, it was… merely a good episode. One of those “set up” or “bridge” episodes, if you’ll pardon the expression. It brought a mix of reveals and confirmations, as we suspected Widmore might be Faraday’s father, and that Widmore planted the fake wreckage (meaning Miles’ chat with the dead guy in “Some Like It Hoth” was a fake out). The dramatic stakes were raised, once again via the separation of our Losties into two groups. We see things spiraling out of control, Faraday’s “four hour” countdown conveniently making the rest of the season a near real-time experience.

I was mostly disappointed in Faraday’s story. It simply felt rushed. We flew through his life, from his youth (torn away from the piano) to his graduation, through his experiments and expulsion from Oxford, to deciding to getting on the freighter. Theresa was but a mere blip, and the whole “Memento”-esque memory condition seemed awkwardly shoehorned in. (We did get our hint last season, though, via his memory test with Charlotte.) I mean, this is not the first time we’ve had an intriguing character with some key knowledge and connections… who ends up dying just when their significance begins to emerge (and at the end of a paint-by-numbers flashback episode).

Jen doesn’t want Faraday to be dead, but frankly, he better be. Another Ben-like resurrection at this point would be downright comical. I’d like to think we’ll still learn more about Faraday and his experiments (perhaps in flashbacks for Hawking or Widmore). His still unexplained tears at the sight of the fake wreckage suggests to me that, in true “Constant” fashion, a part of Miles’ scrambled brain was already in touch with his future self.

Notes and Notions:

  • Jaters rejoice? Sawyer asks “Freckles” to come with him to the beach to start over, and Juliet immediately gives up the code to the sonic fence. Sawyer asks if Juliet still has his back, and her response is only to ask if he’s got her back. If they’re going to go back down that path, I only hope they save it for Season 6.
  • I liked how young piano-playing Faraday told his mother that he could “make time.” Or how he, back on the island, knew when Dr. Chang would arrive at The Orchid, “right on time.”
  • We still haven’t seen Jack’s “moment,” but it was amusing how he noted that it was lucky he was a janitor when they suddenly needed the keys to the gun safe. As one of our listeners noted weeks ago, maybe that was always Sawyer’s plan.
  • Speaking of moments, Jack’s little speech to Kate about hers was pretty anvilicious. We know the both of them have yet to fulfill some grand plan, but to have that spelled out so melodramatically was jarring.
  • Tonight brought a great reminder that some of our Losties spent some time in the 1950s, with Hurley’s line, “Like, Fonzie time?”
  • Sawyer’s still got it in the nickname department. “Twitchy” suits frantic Faraday just fine. Bonus points for the straight-faced delivery of the line, “Your mother is an Other?”
  • Not to be outdone, Miles tells Faraday, “I thought you’d gotten rich inventing the DVD or something.”
  • Any numerologists want to sort out the significance of 141717?
  • Locations: Oxford was, again, St. Andrew’s in downtown Honolulu. The Indian restaurant where Daniel got his notebook was Grand Cafe on Pauahi St. Can’t place the “Marina Medical Center.”

We definitely need help untangling this 100th episode of “LOST.” Please comment below, e-mail, or call the LostLine at (808) 356-0127.

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210 Responses to Next: “The Variable” (Episode 5×14)

  1. Lynn (Boston, MA) says:

    While I’m upset that Daniel appears to be dead (and I think that he is); it opens up the “reason” for Jack to be on the island. From the previews, he has Daniel’s journal in hand and will try to follow his notes and instructions. Jack has been a Man of Science for his life so far, and now is learning to become a Man of Faith. What the Island needs, perhaps, is someone who can be both. Locke is all Faith and no Science; Daniel is all Science and no Faith.

    Another thing re: Sawyer/Kate/Juliet – Sawyer calling Kate “Freckles” brings back a bit of the old Sawyer – the con man. Juliet recognizes that, she knows that deep down, Sawyer will do what he wants to get people to join him. That may be why she immediately gives up the combination to Kate, and why when Sawyer asks her if she’s still got his back, she doesn’t answer in the affirmative, but challenges him by saying the same back to him.

  2. Doug in Illinois says:

    A couple of thoughts.

    When flight 815 crashed, we assumed that all the missing passengers died, but what if some of them traveled to a different time period just like the passengers of 316? If this were true, there may be several 815 “variables” on the Island affecting it’s future. Perhaps this same phenomena can bring people back from the dead. That seems to be the biggest variable there is!

    Secondly, maybe the past can be changed, but it requires an encyclopedic knowledge of the future that only someone from the future could have. Hurley said that many problems can be solved through communication. That might be a hint that at some point people will be able to communicate across time. Perhaps that’s what the whispers in the jungle are.

    So far it seems like people are reluctant to try to change the future. I wonder if Eloise had warned Daniel about being shot, if it could have been avoided. I think the fear of the unknown keeps people from trying in earnest.


  3. Mark B says:

    Now that was a proper LOST episode. My thoughts in a random order …..

    1. Eliose and Widmore are Daniels parents. No surprises there.
    2. Eloise is not a nice mother, she sent Dan to the island knowing he was going to do. And she killed him !
    3. Dan still on some level thinks he can save Charlotte.
    4. Dan is dead ? Eh ? What ? No !
    5. What will become of Sawyer and Juliet now?
    6. Will Jack and Kate go through with Daniels plan to blow-up Jughead and prevent the incident ?
    7. If their plan succeds will it stop the incident and if so will we reset again ?
    8. If Dan is dead how did he make the video with Chang that was shown at Comic-Con ?
    9. Is baby Charlie still waiting with that nurse ? Was anyone else screaming NOOOOOO at the TV when the Dr. said to Penny “Come with me, this nurse will watch your son”. I expected to see Hawking walking hand-in-hand with him out of the hospital. Now I suspect Widmore has taken him. I still think Desmond will go back to the island.
    10. The shootout was a little lame. Radinski and his goons are rubbish shots.
    11. Who is Pennys mum ?
    12. Widmore did fake the crash … unless he’s lying …..
    13. Why did Dan go into the Others camp with a gun ? Did he really expect to hold the entire camp hostage ? Someone was obviously going to shoot him.
    14. Jack is back, sort of.
    15. Sawyer screwed up big time saying “Freckles”.
    16. How did Eloise know she was sending Daniel to his death if it hadn’t happened already ? If she knew then nothing would have changed.
    16a. Is Daniels death the variable that matters. Will Eloise now do something different.
    16b. Why would Eloise believe Daniel is her son ?
    17. Only Frank and Miles left from the Freighter folk. Are they all going the way of the tailies ?

    Please don’t let S5 or S6 end with 815 landing in LA and them all getting off … maybe 815 landing and none of them being on the plane would be better but not really that satisfying. I could perhaps live with S5 ending with them all back but not S6.

    I think a real issue (maybe the major issue) obsessive LOST fans are facing is that we will not be satisfied with almost any ending …. the best we can hope for is something that is OK not cliched or obvious or just plain dumb ……

  4. Fizzlehoff says:

    When Hawking sees Widmore outside the hospital and they talk, I felt her “Don’t Talk to Me about Sacrifice” being very close to when Locke says “Don’t tell me what I can’t do” same tone. Love Lost, love the podcast

  5. Rich in Cleveland says:

    Sawyer’s use of the term of affection “freckles” was so innocuous that I overlooked it, but I think those indicating that Juliet understood the full implications of Sawyer’s appeal are on to something. She’s been cold ever since their dream of playing house began to unravel, but she took it took it to a whole new level here, openly questioning the most basic kind of trust she should expect from Sawyer. He was only insecure when he asked if Jules had his back, but she seemed to express that howling fear beneath a surface of calm that she would be abandoned and left utterly alone by yet another person to whom she had opened her heart.

  6. Connie in Alaska says:

    Some random thoughts:

    John Fischer-I agree with you that the whole “I’ll never leave you Penny” is getting old and ridiculous. The Des-Penny meet-up in the hospital did not ring true for me…too melodramatic. No, “how are you feeling” or “the doctor says…” just cow-eyes and sloppy kissing….ugh.

    I also think you may be onto something regarding Daniel’s conception and birth. Hawking may have deliberately conceived and given birth to Daniel to fulfill some definite purpose in the future. A future that she painstakingly orchestrated for his entire life. I suspect that she may even have tricked Charles Widmore into fathering Daniel and then gave him the last name of Faraday to keep Widmore from ever finding him. Could the search for his lost son be what compelled Charles to leave the Island repeatedly?

  7. Connie in Alaska says:

    Random thoughts Part 2:

    Mark B-I had the same notion that no matter what ending the writers conceive for Lost, a portion of the Lost fandom is going to be unhappy. I can’t imagine that there is a scenario that they can come up with that all of us haven’t already proposed, disected, reformed, warmed over and discarded. It will be the biggest accomplishment in TV if they come up with something that totally gobsmacks all of us while leaving us satisfied.

    Glenn-JC: about Elouis asking Daniel “who are you?’ She may have recognized him from 1954, but not know who he really was. So she’s not asking “who are you, I’ve never seen you before in my life”, but “who are you, I’ve seen you before and now you’ve got some ‘splainin’ to do”.

    What if Daniel provoked his own death to prove his new Variable theory. He was his own guinea pig. We all agree that it was just weird the way he went into the Hostiles’ camp waving that gun like he was asking to be shot. He had to prove to himself and to Jack that he could be killed. Moreover, what if his mother was in on the experiment. It is somehow important that Jack and our other Losties from 2004 be convinced that they can affect their own futures. Daniel just proved it.

    Daniel’s story is a great Christ parallel: born under mysterious circumstances to fulfill a purpose, a life carefully lived to lead him to that purpose, leaving behind his written “word” in the form of a journal for others to follow his example, a tragic and seemingly senseless and unexpected death that may result in the salvation of others, seeming abandonment of his parent at his time of crisis. If he rises from the dead after three days I’m really going to wonder!!!

  8. Steven in Bathurst says:

    I have an idea on the security number 141717 and I hope I’m the first to float this. I think the numbers signify a date: 1st April 1717. No, wait, this being an American show, that date would be 4th January 1717. Regardless, I think the number signifies the date that the Black Rock crashes on the island. With the Black Rock presumably to be explained in the final season, I’m guessing I’ll have to wait until next year to be proven right (or wrong).

  9. Mark B says:

    141717 …. no real idea but I’m thinking some kind of link to Egyptian, Aztec or Mayan calanders …..

    Like the idea about the Black Rock mind but according to Lostpedia most of it’s history is around the early to mid 1800’s so impossible it crashed in 1717. Maybe it’s madien voyage date ….. 100 year old ship unlikely ?

  10. Carol says:

    From has confirmed that Daniel Faraday is, in fact, dead, despite the somewhat ambiguous ending to Wednesday’s episode, “The Variable,” and that actor Jeremy Davies is no longer a member of the show’s full-time cast.

  11. Steven in Bathurst says:

    Ah, I didn’t think to check Lostpedia regarding the Black Rock. I did check the date historically and it turns out that on the 4th January 1717 England, the Netherlands and France signed a treaty called the Triple Alliance. This could be a clue about potential allegiances on the island but, let’s be honest, that’s just ridiculous.

  12. soko says:

    Why is Dan waving a gun around like that? Why not walk in and ask where she is? I think that’s what Jack was trying to say before Kate stopped him.

    How did they sneak up on the Hostiles? That never happens… except when it’s convenient for the story.

    I’ve been a little tired of hearing the explaination of how their time travel works… over and over from so many different losties. They keep telling us over and over how their present is now but what happened happened for all else . We get it . we’ve all seen time travel movies. we saw how they try to change things but it only makes things go the way it always had. Then right before Daniel gets shot, he reminds Jack AGAIN that anyone can die out of the time traveling Losties, practically saying it to the audience while winking and pointing to himself. It’s like the writers are talking down to us like we’re stupid.

    16. How did Eloise know she was sending Daniel to his death if it hadn’t happened already ? If she knew then nothing would have changed.

    … uh. um. It happened thirty years ago when she was on the island.

  13. Tim in DC says:

    Just wanted to add a little easter egg that they dropped in this episode that I don’t think anyone here has mentioned yet. Young piano Daniel counted 864 clicks of the metronome, and 864 is 108 x 8 (and multiples of 4, 8, and 16 to boot). I don’t think it means anything, but it’s fun.

  14. Judi From On. Can says:

    Wow, not sure how I feel about this episode?
    I was struck by Dan’s urgency right from the get go, which sort of explained his going against his usual character (like taking a gun and waving it around) to me. He was compelled to get things done and didn’t have a lot of time or patience for people who could not get him results.
    Seeing how he was pushed by his mother in a direction which may not have been his choice was interesting. Makes me wonder what he would have went on to do if it was left up to him? Maybe he would have just ended up experimenting with time anyway. Or maybe he would have went on to compose some great piece for the piano? However I think that something happened to Eloise, just prior to her going in a closing the lid on the piano. The emotion she showed while watching him play while some how knowing that she had to guide him in a direction that she knew would ultimately lead to his death I felt was real. Something happened that cemented the fact that her son had no choice but to go back to the Island and die by her own hand, perhaps a visit from a recently banished Widmore. I’m sure that we haven’t seen the whole background on that. Certainly from Dan’s perspective she is/was not a great mother.
    Here is what I am thinking: ( If you don’t watch previews don’t read this part)

    In the preview for next weeks episode there was a brief picture of Jack about to dive into a pond of some kind, while standing by on shore is Sayid and the young Eloise, and it looked to me in the still photo of it that she has a baby bump, is she pregnant with Dan? Penny? Both? I don’t know. But if she has come to understand that she did just kill her unborn child, perhaps she is pushed into helping our 815’ers into attempting to change the outcome, perhaps this will be the first taste for her of the whatever happened, happened? Maybe then she leaves the island either out of fear for her child/children, or as punishment for helping the dream team (Jack, Sayid, et al). I think that we have yet to see the reason why she came to push Dan so hard and was so distant emotionally from him. Which caused him to work harder- for her approval, which caused him to take the Job from Daddy dearest- to make her proud of him, which caused him to go back to the ’70s and be shot by his own Mother! Wow, I think I need a drink!
    As always love to hear what you think!

  15. Tawl says:

    My Fave Theories

    1. I suspect that Daniel knows he needed to die (Zhami)

    2. My suspicion is that Widmore is lying about faking the wreckage of O815. I believe that is the real plane down there in the trench. (Zhami)

    3. Widmore now has his grandson.. thanks to his “nurse”

    4. What if Daniel provoked his own death to prove his new Variable theory. He was his own guinea pig (Connie In Alaska)

    5. Time is not a straight line, but like folded paper and can have the same time-point on different folded layers

  16. Eric in Massachusetts says:

    The guy Miles “talked” to (Felix) wasn’t a “fakeout”. Miles said he was bringing Widmore grave photos and an order form for a 747. Miles did not say Ben or Widmore faked the crash. It was left open to interpretation.

    Also, I really don’t get your taste in episodes. I know different people watch the show for different reasons, but I thought “Dead Is Dead” and “The Variable” were the best episodes this season, and thought that “Whatever Happened, Happened” revealed next to nothing and was mostly a waste of time.

    To say Faraday’s episode was “merely good” and Kate’s was worth raving about… I dunno. I strongly disagree.

  17. Lauren from Parma says:

    Quick question: Sorry I’m new here. Can some one define Jaters? Like I think it is Kate/Sawyer fans. Like what is the origin? Is this an acronym? Is there also one for Jack and Kate?

  18. Ryan says:

    Eric in Massachusetts: Many episodes this season have been chock full of reveals and clues related to the mythology of “LOST.” But some of them have been so at the expense of character. We’re not Kate fans at all, something we get grief for all the time, but her episode was perhaps the best one ever for her character. “The Variable” might have twisted our brains in knots on the sci-fi front, but I think it handled Daniel’s character pretty poorly.

    Lauren from Parma: Fandom shorthand for Jack and Kate fans are “Jaters,” and Sawyer and Kate fans are “Skaters.”

  19. target242 says:

    Rewatching this episode really shows Eloise’s emotion when she talks to Daniel for the last time before his departure. I was hoping that she was so eager to send him back is that his special gift is to be able to change time and that perhaps this “time”, it would be different and he wouldn’t get shot…of course I guess she could have said watch your back…LOL

    A question about the H-Bomb and the fail safe switch. Daniel says he is going to use the H-Bomb to negate the energy. Ok..pushing the button keeps the energy in check. Desmond failing to push the button causes energy to be released and the plane to crash. Locke fails to push the button and Desmond hits the fail safe….what happens to the energy? If all it took to end the whole cycle was to push the fail safe, why didn’t someone do it sooner? I still am unsure what is going on there. I honestly don’t think Ben knew about the button. The incident and the Swan hatch were created after he was an Other so he had no knowledge of its creation per se. Looking back on his capture by Russo, he seems unaware of his surroundings, etc. What did he have to gain by Locke not pushing the button, etc. ?

  20. target242 says:

    One other question regarding life after death…

    Could it be that both Locke and Christian are alive on the island not because they are somehow resurrected, but that perhaps their timelines get altered so that they don’t die afterall?

    My head hurts….

  21. Jon in Virginia Beach says:

    A note on “variables”.

    Variables can change, but a sytem of equations must always balance.

    When you have multiple equations with multiple unknowns and you change one of the variables, the other variables will also change to balance the system of equations.

    Even though variables can change, that change cannot unbalance a system of equations.

  22. Connie in Alaska says:

    Tim in DC-Nice work on the metrinome count breakdown. Music is facinating in that it inspires the creative and at the same time is very precise and mathematical. And I’m not just talking about rhythm and beats. The whole of music theory is very mathematical and be easily described through numbers and equations. I was not at all surprised that Young Daniel would be drawn to the piano and music. It would have been a healthy outlet for his creative side. Too bad Hawking squashed it like a bug.

  23. April says:

    I used to think that Richard did not age because he’s actually already “dead” and has been for a long long time; but now I think he just keeps skipping through time! If the latter is the case, then he can die…. but of course the island would revive him because he is such an important man to it. So, Daniel will come again! Either as a man who has been healed by the island, or because during all of the time looping, something will change, and he will not have died.

    I agree that Desmond has been Daniels constant, but I don’t think Dan has been Desmonds… I thought it was Penny! Desmond keeps telling Penny he will never leave her because he really means it… their love is so strong, and that is why so many of us viewers love them as a couple! (Unlike our adorable Sawyer, who can’t decide if he loves Juliet or Kate!) However, maybe they will go back to the island together… out of a common need… to find Charlie! Then again, won’t that be a problem for Des… doesn’t he need his constant to be off the island????? So Confusing, and I love it!!!

  24. Russell from California says:

    Locke’s dad was a heartless conman. Ben’s pops was an abusive alcoholic. Jack’s dad — who knows what’s up with that guy? But all of these cowboys with Daddy Issues can’t compare to Faraday and his Mommy Issues. This woman sent her son to the Island so she could kill him. As much as getting pushed out of a four-story window might sting, that doesn’t have anything on dying…


    Faraday lives, which I personally believe he will — but not from some Temple resurrection.

    I think one crucial piece to the big puzzle is Desmond. Why show him at all in this episode? Why was Eloise checking on him? It is because Desmond is The Variable. (notice that the title refers to variable in the singular, not plural like Faraday used in his theory of the Losties being “the variables.”)

    Faraday was right in explaining that free will can change destiny but there’s only one person that can transcend time: Desmond. We saw this earlier when Faraday gave him a new memory and told him he is “special.”

    I believe Eloise will send Desmond to the Island to save her son. This intervention by Desmond will be known as The Incident and as a result, Faraday will be stuck in an alternate time loop (separate reality), where he remembers things of his past and future at once. This is why we saw him crying watching the fake 815 wreckage.

  25. Mirepoix from Mtl says:

    Its been the first time that we, in Quebec, get to watch the French version before the original US season ends.
    Ep 1 just aired.

    to John Fisher
    How could Dan have a note in his journal of Chang’s arrival at the Orchid? He must have been there at this very moment before.
    He could not convince Chang this time
    but seems that Chang got around developing the time travel powers under the Orchid
    Also Chang is heard ordering evacuation in the previews
    An intelligent man he may have added up Hurley’s hints to Dan’s reveal and move forward in sending people to safety (including baby Miles)

    How did Hawking know of Desmond wound ? She had to be told by Ben just before he boarded A316.

    Dan experiments on himself in Oxford may have triggered some lagging memory loss sequels which became more severe
    Maybe the experiment tried on Theresa bombed as she was left displaced in time mid-air

    Why was it so important for Kate to take guns?
    I too find bizarre that they would reach the Hostile camp unnoticed
    The whole Dan behavior with the gun was really out of place
    Is it just bad acting or bad writing?

    Time is linear for each person
    Some move along without going any back & forth (like Éloise)
    Others like Dan or Locke (and the flashies) live 2004 before 1954 & 1977 (for a second time but in another place) then move to 2007
    For some reason Locke has not lived 2004 @ 2007

    Lets reflect on Dan’s birth
    He must be around 30 yo in 2007
    which makes him born in 1977 ±1-2 years
    So was it before or after he got shot by his mother?
    Like Connie mentioned,
    maybe there is a little Dan in the camp.
    I guess Faraday must be his step dad’s name
    But how could Ellie leave the island during the 80’s ?

    What puzzles me is that Hawking is not taking a more active part in trying to alter events
    She knows what she has done to his son all along

    Here we have Hostiles who meet a guy (Dan) who has not aged much in 23 years
    Yet why would they be impressed ?
    They have Richard Alpert who never seems to age
    They must see that they are aging themselves (like Ellie)…

    What if Dan built the LamPost in LA during his Ann Arbour stay 74 @ 77
    This would mean he knew in 1977 how to go to the island (noted in his journal) and could have gone a number of times in the following years.
    BTW his journal seems far more stocked than when he looks through it at the beach camp in 2004
    My feeling is that there was a lot of back & forth during the 74 @ 77 time period

    Speaking of the journal
    Dan dropped his bag as he entered the camp
    Forget Ellie getting the journal Jack’s got it He somehow retreived it

    Regarding the journal pages being in Ben’s office in 2007
    lets remember that there were equations written on Danielle’s map of the island and on the hatch blast door map (I feel Dan is the only person who could have written these equations)
    So he has been around…

    The Incident
    It has to do with JugHead
    How would the DI people know that it needs to be concreted? and how would they develop this button-activated release mechanism?
    All these people (DI and Hostiles) are still around 15 years later for the purge.

    If the turning of the key in 2004 detonated an H-Bomb
    How were Desmond Ecko and Locke still be alive?
    Our understanding is that it imploded (because of the EM properties), but there would still be some deadly radiations around.

    I looked at the preview in super slowmo (1/15 sec frames)
    Jack is swimming to the Temple and finds a man we cannot recognize
    However we later see him with Sayid olding torches with two other person unidentified (seen from their back)
    It also looks like Juliet will not be getting Sawyier’s back as he gets beaten by Radzinski
    Have they run out of thruth serum?

  26. Brian Meehan says:

    So everytime we see Richard Alpert at a camp, he’s coming out of his “office” with a coffee cup. Perhaps things are a little more corporate than we thought in Otherville. Richard is the Office Manager of the Others, reporting to the Partners, Widmore and Hawking.

  27. Popokigirl says:

    @Doug in Illinois: Your idea about Hurley’s saying better communication is what counts very interesting, particularly the connection you draw with the whispers. If Hurley’s voice is the one reading off the numbers as many have speculated, at some point he puts that idea into action (and sets off the chain of events…NO, don’t go down that rabbit hole and get “Lost”! 🙂 Okay. Anyhow.) It makes me think about what would have happened if Miles had bought into Hurley’s idea and confessed to Chang that he was in fact his son.

  28. Paulo from Portugal says:

    Great episode. One of the best. But I’m disappointed with the death of Faraday. I was counting on him to give more information on how the island/time travel works. He knew exactly when Dr Chang’s van would arrive at the Orchid. He knew the exact timetable for the Swan incident. This means he knew the “future”. During the 3 years that he spent with the D.I. he must have gathered lot’s of information about the island. And although death in Lost isn’t “permanent” I don’t expect to see much of faraday in future Episodes.

  29. Ilias says:

    Hi guys,

    The expectation for the 100th episode was that it would be something great but that was not the case. It was a great episode, I liked that we got to see the majority of the characters together albeit for a brief scene.

    Some of the more obvious questions were answered and some new “variables” were introduced for good measure. I am sticking to the initial Danny theory that you cannot change the past, he believed that he could but what he did really failed to grasp is that him believing that he could change the course of things as a variable was exactly what was suppose to happen. The O6’s destiny was to be on the island when he would get killed and that is something his mother knew all too well.

    It will be the O6 that will now take care of whatever it is that they need to take care of. What I find interesting is that we know that the island looks fine but that could not possibly be the case if a hydrogen bomb had exploded or the energy was released as that would be catastrophic. So what will happen? Well, I believe that the Others will make sure that everything gets under control as the DI seems oblivious. The Others will only do so because Jack and the other Losties will make sure and that is the destiny that Eloise was talking about.

    Reading the above in the wee hours of the morning after a glass of a good bourbon makes my herd spin even faster but I hope I make some sense… …at least as much as one is expected when he is trying to explain Lost.

    You guys are great as always, be good!


  30. Ilias says:

    Small correction, it should read:

    The expectation for the 100th episode was that it would be something great, something special but that was not the case. It was a GOOD episode, I liked that we got to see the majority of the characters together albeit for a brief scene.

  31. Stefani from Mass says:

    I love reading these boards and listening to the podcast!

    My apologies to Zhami for misquoting his name in my earlier post (I said Zumi). Still worried about baby Charlie.

  32. Stefani from Mass says:

    Oops again – Zhami = His or Her name!

  33. Rich in Cleveland says:

    @ Mirepoix
    Ms. Hawking only acts to ensure a given path or destiny, not to alter the ultimate course of events. Talk about a paradox, voluntary actions being required for a fixed destiny to play out. From her first appearance with Desmond to her shepherding of the O6, Hawking has always worked toward keeping the variables in their proper channels in the service of a destiny she obviously already knows. Despite her parting of the ways with Widmore, I believe she share this basic conviction with him. “That island was once mine. It will be again,” he tells Ben with a profound belief in its inevitability. Ben, on the other hand, not only wants, but believes he can change the loop even as he suffers countless, repetitive beatings at the hands of fate. Which leader do we follow? Or is there a dark horse?

    Add Dan to the piano afficiandos of Lost. First, of course was Charlie with the gift from his Mom that defined him as special. Remember Jack playing “Heart and Soul” and Ben played as well.

  34. Rich in Cleveland says:

    Faraday wouldn’t know Chang would show up at the Orchid per se or have a precise map of the future. But what he might have been able to measure and predict with his formulas was the large discharge of energy that occurred during drilling. From his knowledge of the Tempest and the secondary protocol, I believe Daniel might have received an extensive briefing on the history of Dharma while on the freighter. This is the only way he could know about the incident and the purge since the next time he leaves the island is 1977 and I don’t recall anyone explaining these events to him.

  35. buzz says:

    > Can’t place the “Marina Medical Center.”

    Condo at 215 North King Street, across from Aala park. I live there. Filmed Friday night February 27, a very windy and cool week and it really showed in the face-slapping scene.

  36. ManilaRaf says:

    Haven’t posted here in a while.

    Am starting to get intrigued by what’s in Hurley’s guitar case. I’m wondering if at some point everyone in 1977 gets transported back to 2007 and Ilana/Bram & Co get the drop on them or if something happens in 1997 where everyone gets cornered by DHARMA/the Hostiles.

    Hurley’s guitar case then opens up to reveal a weapons cache ala Robert Rodriguez’s El Mariachi. Probably not. But considering all the pop culture references in LOST, I wouldn’t discount it or the writers having some fun with this. 🙂

  37. ManilaRaf says:

    I posted this somewhat jokingly earlier, but now the more I think about it, the more I’m willing to believe it. It may or may not be a cache of weapons; how about a bunch of working batteries for Sayid to use? Unrefuteable proof for Dr Chang so that he believes they’re from the future? A bunch of laterns for Jacob? Eyeliner for Richard Alpert? 🙂

  38. Debbie in VA says:

    If Jack is able to avoid Flight 815 crashing, wouldn’t they still be off course? I seem to remember the Pilot saying that rescue would be a problem…they were a thousand miles off course. With that in mind, would the off course plane have enough gas to make it to a country to land OR would they crash into the ocean? Just wondering.

  39. Cerebral Hypoxia says:

    I agree with many of the people who are concerned about the Comic Con video. If Faraday is dead, when was the video recorded. Could Jack eventually save Faraday? Juliet and Kate seemed to think that Jack could have saved Ben.

    I was waiting for Faraday to tell Jack that he was going to send him “back to the future.”

  40. Tawl says:

    Can anyone explain the DI food drop the Losties got from an airplane (first seasons). Whose airplane did it belong to, and why was it still dropping food? Was the food for Desmond, the Others, or ??

    Widmore didn’t know where the Island was, so I doubt he was responsible.

    Do the DI people on the mainland know where the Island is in 2004?

    I assume the sub is used for trasnportation to the Island so that it can travel there secretly, or maybe to slip thru a wormhole under the sea.

  41. Tim R says:

    Tawl, that was probably a delayed food drop that came into the island on the wrong bearing and got lost in time for a few decades..

  42. Rich in Cleveland says:

    I’ve been asking this question forever and think the supply drop is one of the great remaining mysteries of Lost. The supply drops must have been continuing for some time on a regular basis even after the purge to keep Kelvin, Radzinsky, and later Desmond well stocked with Apollo bars and ranch dressing. For some reason, a lockdown inside the swan hatch accompanied these drops as we saw when Locke discovered the blast door map, perhaps to open a window to the island or prevent electromagnetic energy from bringing down the plane.

    In addition, I believe we saw plenty of Dharma food products in Ben’s refrigerator.

    But who was behind these drops? Did the others just appropriate all the off-island apparatus of the DI much like they did with the sub? As for Widmore and the DI, it would seem that if they knew where the island was, they would take more direct action than just provisioning a last outpost. But perhaps there’s a distinction between knowing the location of the island and knowing an entry point through which these supplies can reach the island.

    Remember the McCutcheon’s whiskey that Desmond shared with Hurley and Charlie when they figured out he could see the future? That was part of the supply drop. Don’t count Widmore out.

  43. Mark B says:


    What I meant by “How did Eloise know she was sending Daniel to his death if it hadn’t happened already ? If she knew then nothing would have changed.” was exactly that. Many posters have suggested that something changed as Daniel died in this 1977 and his death was the variable but if Daniel had always died in every 1977 then nothing changed so no alteration in the timeline so nothing will be different. If Whatever Hapened Happened holds true then Daniel always died so nothing changed and we only have one timeline. If he only died in this 1977 then something changed but Eloise would not know in this 2007 as Daniel would not have died before in the original 1977.

    Does that make any sense at all ?

  44. Mirepoix from Mtl says:

    Actually that is not really what has happened
    Eloise is living her lifetime without jumping back & forth
    Her 1977 is before 2007
    On the other hand
    Daniel has lived 2004 before he returned to 1974 and 1977 on the island
    How many times has he lived that loop ?
    We dont know
    but he has relived the Orchid encounter with Chang more than once once probably without Miles
    How could he do that ? He did not tell

  45. Rebecca in Copenhagen says:

    I’ll just say that this episode makes it clear that nobody suffering from any illness should ever, Ever take advice from Charles Widmore…who will clearly just send them off to get shot somewhere in the past. “The Island will heal you” – yea, I bet!

    Great episode – can’t wait for the podcast!

  46. Yann From France says:

    I was listening to an old podcast by Carlton and Lindeloff. They were saying how they didn’t like the idea of Heroes: Hiro can go back in time, saying “save the chearleader”. They save the chearleader: then how come Hiro could come back in time to tell them if it’s not the same future?

    And I agree with them (and I like the idea that Hiro can know just stop time and Peter just get the last power he meet and not all the powers he ever met! (how stupidly powerfull he was!))

    So the only answer possible is: everything that was suppose to happen will happen! But the futur can be changed through the variables… That’s why we WILL have a tape made by Chang to the new Dharma telling them in which plane they need to go to go to the Island.

  47. Rebecca in Copenhagen says:

    Hi Mark B –
    I read your comment and I think you’ve got 80% of it…

    The “whatever happened, happened” thing still holds true when we look at what happened with Daniel. I just re-watched the conversation between Miles and Hurley where it all gets hashed out, and it’s really like – Ben/The Others/The DI’ers are all experiencing their present in 1977, and the Losties’ present was in 2004/2007 until Ben turned the wheel and their time line was no longer linear and forward-moving, but wrapped around back to 1974/1977. So the 70’s were no longer in the past for them, but it was their present. Eloise in 1977 wouldn’t know that Daniel-from-the-future was her son, but in 2004 when she told him to take Widmore’s job offer, she knew that she had killed him when his present jumped from 2007 to 1977.

    This is the craziest part about “whatever happened, happened” – because yes, Daniel was always there, and Daniel always dies, and Eloise in 2007 always remembers she is responsible. She sends him to the Island knowing that he has to die in order to bring about the events which have, by 2007, already occurred.

    What I think is so unique about this crazy scenario is the incredible amount of power both the Losties and the 1970’s groups have due to the jumping around in time. The Losties timewarp back with the knowledge of who and what some of these people on the Island are – the Hostiles, the DI…knowing the broad strokes of what they’re doing and what they want. They even know some of the key players, like Ben and Richard, from their time on the Island in 2004. This means Sawyer is able to talk his way into creating himself a cozy little life in the DI, for example, and talk his way out of a confrontation with Richard on his first night. But then too — the characters who are moving linearly through time like Widmore and Eloise are able to look back on their experiences and see where their timelines have been marked by these crazy time-travelers who showed up and set certain important events into motion, and so they use that knowledge to ensure that the events always play out as they should. It gives them incredible manipulative power when they meet these Losties/freighties in 2004 who haven’t yet been in the past and don’t know what’s ahead.

    It’s so cylindrical: Widmore and Eloise encounter grown-up Daniel in 1954 with knowledge of Jughead, baby Daniel is born some decades later, grown-up Daniel enters the Hostiles’ camp and is shot by Eloise (though we don’t know whether his birth or death comes first), Eloise raises Daniel on a short leash to ensure his gifts are put to proper use, Eloise pushes him to return to the Island, where she knows he will jump through time and eventually do all the things we’ve seen since his arrival in Season 4, before dying by her bullet. Because whatever happened, happened – he always returned to the Island, because he was there in 1977 when she shot him.
    Wild stuff!

    All this talk about variables is still a bit foreign to me – I’m trying to make sense of it, so I hope the podcast and blog will help 🙂

  48. NuckinFuts says:

    Loved the reference to A-Team above regarding the shoot-out. It was definitely cheese-ball. A little “Dukes of Hazard” maybe too.

    RE : Comic-Con video and others:

    What if Daniel has made use of the Orchid. We know that 2 people / bunnies can be at the same place at the same time. Perhaps the reason he knows when Chang will show up is that he has made some ‘copy’ of himself. I need to re-watch the show I think, but sometime during the events we see…Daniel sneaks into the Orchid and sends his body back in time…but a little different than “Back to the Future II”. Daniels goes through the motions of a day or two learning and writing in his notebook. Then he goes to the Orchid. He sends a copy of himself back a few days to after he first arrived. He then meets himself and tells himself his plan. ( I know this is paradoxical…very ). “Futre Dan” is the one we watched on Wed. He is sure of what he is doing ( more sure ) and knows when / where Chang will be at the Orchid. The first Dan is somewhere hidden, and waiting to reveal himself at the proper time. Perhaps this ‘paradox’ sets up “The Incident” ; but it could explain why Chang was able to make the video with the Original Dan. When the “Future Dan” is shot it creates “Jacob”?

    On another note ( bad pun intended ) : Perhaps since Dan is a musician wanna-be he is the one who programmed the computer w/ Beach Boys in “The Looking Glass” Sation.

    Looking foward to the Podcast. –

    Brian ( Atlanta ) ~ NuckinFuts

  49. chris landroche says:

    we see daniel playing a lot of panio,in this espoide does it have any thing to do with, the musical keypad charlie used to turn off the jammer in the looking glass.

  50. NuckinFuts says:

    RE: My own post:

    I would assume that the 1st time Dan arrived he and the D.I. drilled into the future Swan. This is why he knows the exact time. During that drilling and the chaos that starts to ensue, he and Chang perhaps together send a copy of Dan back in time. If this is true, then I wonder if Chang sends a few copies of himself out as well. Perhaps this is why he has so many different names. Each version of himself needs to be able to tell the difference?

    I know Ryan and Jen hate the paradox stuff…but I think this is where we are headed.

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