Next: “LA X” (Episode 6-01/02)

“LA X” was a fitting opener to the final season of “LOST.” It had a reassuring focus on character with a generous topping of mythology. It had moments of strong emotional resonance, and a few gasp-worthy reveals. And it sets the stage for the epic battle between Jacob and the Man In Black that has apparently simmered beneath much of what we’ve been studying for the past several years. Sure, with yet another storytelling “twist,” we have no idea what’s going on… but since when has that been a problem?

Okay. So Jen’s a little nonplussed with the “parallel storyline” structure, and I can see why. On one hand, it’s clever. We get to see both outcomes of the Jughead argument. And the little differences we spot range from amusing hat-tips to a deeper exploration of a person’s fate. On the other, it seems just a little cheap to not commit to one answer… at least this late in the game. It also raises the troubling specter of having to switch between two worlds for several more episodes, when we really want the writers to just pick a path and let the rubber finally, finally hit the road.

And intellectually, I can see many reasons to dismiss or even dislike the universe where Oceanic Flight 815 lands safely in Los Angeles. Through that lens, they’ve thrown out five years of character development and regression. So I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Sure, some of the touches were more fan bait than plot (Frogurt at the taxi stand, Doctor Arzt being annoying), but other moments felt right: Jack and Locke talking at the airport lost and found, with Jack taking interest in Locke’s condition. Jin returning to his darker, meaner self, and Sun already rebelling. Sawyer flirting with Kate, but more tellingly, not interfering with her escape from the airport. Hurley being confident and lucky. And Charlie, once running from death, now almost exhaustedly chasing it. I guess I’m more curious about the “what if” scenario than I thought I was.

Besides. The island is underwater? A development that comes about sometime after New Otherton is built? (A development that, sadly, could’ve used a few more days in the CGI rendering farm?) Just like watching a magic show, independent of everything else, I now simply have to see how they explain that. My guess is that it sank when Ben moved the island, a moment that is at the other end of whatever branching we’re now seeing. But I can’t even begin to explain what I actually mean.

Meanwhile, the new on-island world (universe, storyline, timeline, what have you) so far certainly seems to be custom-built to feed the fans obsessed with the mythology of the show. “I’m sorry you had to see me like that,” says Unlocke, while Richard says, incredulously, “You!” If the Man in Black and the smoke monster are one and the same, we now have a whole new prism through which to reexamine the last five seasons. I only hope things hold up under such scrutiny.

Learning what was in the guitar case so early in the season was a pleasant surprise, and the giant Ankh was certainly an impressive prop, regardless of the fact that a sealed envelope would’ve probably worked just as well.

Finally, we see the temple, and meet a whole new group of characters. It’s a good thing Hiroyuki Sanada is so good at being mysterious, because these original recipe Others (shunning technology and performing rituals) could very well have been too much, too late. Instead, Sanada seemed a perfect disciple and ally of Jacob, and through him, the Others again seemed to be a tribe to be reckoned with. An intimidating air that was reminiscent of the first two seasons, before Kate found the costumes.

What of the temple spring? Apparently it’s supposed to heal, as the Island itself does, though that power went missing as the water turned cloudy. Sayid, instead of being revived, apparently died. But that was likely always Jacob’s plan. I bet that Jacob now has a new agent or vessel in Sayid, given the unfamiliar voice with which Sayid asked, “What happened?”

But with word that Jacob is dead, the Others at the Temple prepare for battle with “him.” Their flare alerts Alpert, who’s sadly pummeled by Unlocke/Man In Black, and I guess the battle is on.

Notes and Notions:

  • I guess we had to get “closure” with Juliet, but having to basically see her die twice was wrenching. Josh Holloway, hands down, gave the performance of the evening.
  • From beyond the grave, Juliet says, “It worked.” So can she see the other timeline? Is it even, really, another timeline? After all, in Los Angeles, it’s 2004. On the island, it’s 2007 or so. Maybe the writers can somehow connect the two into one single timeline? Does that even make sense?
  • The Man in Black’s tribute to the late John Locke was a bittersweet one. He spoke the truth about our sad, defeated friend, and our would-be hero. But perhaps not surprisingly, Terry O’Quinn’s “menacing” look is incredibly effective, and I’ll gladly let John Locke go in favor of seeing what the actor does with a whole new soul.
  • The Man in Black wants to get off the island, and go “home.” I guess it’s fair to ask where or what “home” is, but I think the real story is why he (and likely Jacob) are trapped on the island. His reference to Alpert’s chains, meanwhile, hint strongly at the suspected link between Alpert and the Black Rock.
  • Hurley can see Jacob, but Jin can’t, though Jacob touched them both. Therefore, Hurley is special, and seeing the dead is simply his thing. Indeed, he seems almost too suddenly fine with it, barely reacting when Jacob tells him he died three hours prior, and talking warmly to the recently deceased Sayid. Miles, too, got to let his freak flag fly, and this time his communion with the dead came with a great deal of dramatic flourish. Sometimes, I can’t believe this is the same show we were watching in Season 1.
  • Great lighter moments. Hurley saying he knows how to use a gun, or arguing about trademarking the word “Outback.” Locke telling Boone he’s not pulling his leg, and Boone telling Locke he’d follow him to stay safe on a plane. And, of course, a Sawyer nickname: Earhart.
  • Richard said, “Asking me what’s in the shadow of the damn statue doesn’t mean you’re in charge.” He flippantly referred to a line that, up until now, was infused with significance and weight. Kind of like, “Live together, die alone.”
  • Fun with pointy things! Jack was again looking for a pen to save someone’s life. And how great is it that a character named Bram dies via a stake through his heart?
  • Book: “Fear and Trembling” by Soren Kierkegaard, a retelling of the biblical story of Abraham sacrificing Isaac.
  • Locations: The Temple interior is on the Hawaii Film Studio sound stage, but the impressive exterior is in Manoa Valley. The plane interior, and the collapsed hatch tunnel, was also on the studio lot. The Swan site is in the jungles of Heeia Kea in Kaneohe, and the foot of the four toed statue was Makua Beach. LAX is, of course, Honolulu International Airport.

We’d love your feedback for our podcast this weekend! Comment below, e-mail us at lost@hawaiiup.com, or call the LOSTLine at 815-310-0808.

397 Responses to “Next: “LA X” (Episode 6-01/02)”

  1. Pete from Rockford says:

    I’ve just re-watched the “Sayid wakes” scene about 6 times. I think it is Sayid’s voice, but it just seems different because he’s slurring his words a bit. (Hey, I’d be slurring too if I had just come back from the dead.)

    BTW — when Miles said “nothing”, I think he was realizing that he couldn’t hear “dead Sayid”.

  2. SciFiHorrorFem says:

    LOVED IT! ‘Nuff said! Hehe

  3. Larry says:

    Too many commercials.

  4. Pete from Rockford says:

    @Brendon — definitely an alternate timeline, IMO. As to why, I don’t know, but your theory is as good as any at this point!

  5. Daniel Barkowitz says:

    Matt, great point about the ash! You’re right of course, so the line in ash must have been broken long before…

    I don’t have TiVo in NY so I can’t go back and listen to Sayid’s voice, but how cool if he is now another character…

    And is Richard dead now? Maybe Sayid is Richard… 🙂

  6. Knives Monroe says:

    @ Pete from Rockford.
    I do believe it was Sayid’s voice too.
    but we sadly can’t rule out that he can either Locke or Jacob.
    Maybe Miles didn’t hear Sayid’s voice, maybe he heard Jacob’s or Locke’s.

    But in all reality, I do hope its my Sayid. I really do =)

  7. Joe in Texas says:

    @Yann – Good point!

    Awesome Season Premeire! I can hardly wait till next week!

  8. Pete from Rockford says:

    @Knives —

    Agree 100%. He definitely may not be “our Sayid”, but I don’t think the voice was altered.

    The bit about Miles hearing someone else’s voice hadn’t occurred to me — I just figured he wasn’t hearing anything. Good point.

  9. Michael says:

    If John Locke + Man in Black = Flock, then now John Locke + Smokey = Smock.

  10. Joe in Texas says:

    Jacob = God
    Evil John Locke = Devil

  11. Kirsten Hansen says:

    And Grunny makes a VO appearance as “the pilot”!!! LOVES!!!

  12. Daniel Barkowitz says:

    Any Japanese speakers here? Wondering if the translations were accurate…..

  13. Knives Monroe says:

    This confusing Sayid accent debauchery is going to destroy me for 7 days.

  14. Pete from Rockford says:

    @Daniel — One of my friends does a bit, but not enough to determine the accuracy. I was wondering the same.

  15. Knives Monroe says:

    **SORRY, I’m JUST THE LARGEST SAYID FAN, SO I MUST SAY THIS**

    Okay, before I say this, I must admit that anything goes in the final season, and with LOST in general, anything can happen.
    I have always stood by the WHATEVER HAPPENED, HAPPENED philosophy, as well as the DEAD IS DEAD philosophy.
    With that in mind, I don’t think Sayid was ever really ‘dead’ judging from Mile’s reaction.
    Because I believe DEAD IS DEAD, there’s no way Sayid could have been dead.

    This is the ABC’s UNTANGLED for these 2 episodes.
    Hopefully it puts to rest Sayid’s “resurrection”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68oWevQ6gyI&feature=sub

    if anyone has any counter arguments, please send them my way.

    -Knives

  16. Travis says:

    So they bring Juliette back just so we can have another goodbye death scene with here and Sawyer? That’s just wrong. It was hard enough watching it the first time.

  17. E says:

    I think the “chains” comment was referring to the fact that Richard had been a servant to Jacob, and is now no longer that.

  18. Daniel Barkowitz says:

    OMG… Ryan and Jen are now on Nightline as well… and Darlton is commenting on the fans…

  19. The Transmission just got a shoutout on Nightline!!!!

  20. Hurmoth says:

    You guys and the website were just on Nightline!!! 🙂

  21. Genevieve says:

    I just heard and saw y’all on Nightline! Yay!

  22. BeccaD says:

    You were on Nightline. That’s pretty cool 🙂

    I loved, loved, loved the premiere. But I’m so confused!

  23. Carol from Boston says:

    Jacob said “They’re coming” as his last words, I think he meant Jack, Sawyer etc.

    Cannot even begin to process that episode. I didn’t think of the possibility of two timelines taking place in the new plot device that Darlton now callls “Flash sideways”.

    Loved it but I am totally confused. I have to watch it again. So many shocking moments, smokey Locke, Claire in the Cab, Sayid “dying”, the island underwater.

    Great article on ew.com with Carlton and Damon talking about the new direction of the series.

    In the last poster they released they said there were several clues to the new season. It appeared to have someone tied up on the black Rock, Richard?

    Also wondering if the cloth cut by Locke at the beginning is the same cloth that was found in the cabin by Alana. Which brings up other possiblities.

    @Knives, couldn’t help but think of you when Sayid died. Jack and everyone doesn’t know about the “two lockes” so they don’t realize there could be two Sayids.

    Jen and Ryan – can’t wait to hear your thoughts!!!

  24. Pete from Rockford says:

    Not to mention Ryan’s voice: “What do the numbers mean?”

  25. Carol from Boston says:

    Loved seeing Charlie again and Boone, etc. It really is a whole new show now. Locke and Jack got along, no smog at LAX – it really is an alternate reality!

  26. Rita says:

    Words can’t explain what i’m thinking about this final season.

  27. Cuedblu says:

    My head hurts trying to figure out the storytelling device being used in this one. But while thinking about the mythology makes my head hurt, seeing all of the characters again put a lump in my throat and, occasionally, a tear in my eye. I have to admit, they got me with nostalgia, both at taking us back to the beginning, and in bringing us back our characters after an very long 8 months.

  28. @Carol do you have a link for the poster you mentioned? Don’t think I’ve seen that one

  29. Stacey, NC says:

    You guys got a mention on “Nightline”! Awesome! 🙂

    My brain is still exploding. Where’s my Tylonol????

  30. Joe in Texas says:

    @Knives – I agree, judging by Mile’s reaction, Sayid wasn’t dead.

    Yes, saw Nightline and the shoutout to The Transmission!

  31. Cuedblu says:

    One more thing. I’m guessing Jacob’s ‘resurrection’ is tied to making sure all of the people he touched are back on the island at the same place. If Sayid died, that would have mucked up that plan, hence the others comments about making sure he doesn’t die.

  32. Lisa says:

    Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow!

    What a great couple of episodes to kick the season off!

    The biggest thing that hit me was about Hurley. When they go to take Sayid to the temple, Hurley changed into a red shirt. At first, I got worried, after all we all know about what happens to “Red Shirts” But once we got to temple, I noticed that most everyone else there was wearing at least a little red, but the more important people (guards, etc) had a fair amount of red on (The guy in the red turban for example) That’s when I noticed that none of the other Losties changed, they all still had the clothes that they wore when the bomb went off.

    What could it mean? Does Hurley have a place among the Others? It seems so. He is the one that is singled out by Jacob and the Leaders at the Temple. I see a bigger role for Hurley than I ever thought!

    Can’t wait for The Transmission and next week’s episode of LOST!

  33. Rich in Cleveland says:

    Get some perspective. Better than the pilot? No way. A new and obscured variation of our favorite myth that could lead to the heart of a deeper mystery? OK.

    Is there any remaining doubt that what Ben said was true, that the Others are in fact the “good guys?” I especially loved the Zen master in the temple. He was teaching, guiding, healing. But if our survivors had remained an unknown, potential threat, he would have eliminated them on the spot. And now we can start to see why. They protect the wellspring of life from the fog of final judgement.

  34. Joe in Texas says:

    @Matt – just Google “lost supper picture”

  35. A few reactions to the episodes and the posts here:

    Jacob as Sayid would suck. I like Sayid and all, but is he as integral to the mythology, black vs. white as Locke has been? I trust Team Darlton to do the right thing, but if Jacob is now Sayid then I’ll withhold judgment for a bit, even though my gut says it’s a bad idea.

    Best scene had to be Juliet and Sawyer’s final goodbye – it was so moving that I had to walk out of my office to give my wife (who is a much bigger Biggest Loser fan than Lost fan) a kiss. Josh Holloway is one of the most underrated performers on television, and a bright spot in an already stellar cast.

    Fake Locke/Smokey/Man in Black’s dismantling of who John Locke was was awesome. I love how he was able to point out every flaw in Locke’s character and brag about how he exploited each of them to get what he wanted. In his explanation, I almost feel that he was telling Ben to his face EXACTLY how he used him as well.

    Favorite line was Hurley – “I’ve got a gun!” struggle struggle “And I know how to shoot it!”

  36. Carol from Boston says:

    @Matt here is the link to the poster with the clues. I right clicked it and saved it and printed it so I could examine it more.

    http://www.nothingsforever.com/dcpb/final/

  37. Dara says:

    RYAN AND JEN!

    Did you know ABC Nightly News mentioned you both and showed a photo of you in their segment on LOST? They mentioned the various podcasts and had sound bytes from your shows. They also showed a photo of you both.

    Congratulations on all your success. You both really deserve it. Looking forward to your thoughts and insight this season.

  38. Carol from Boston says:

    Joe this is different image than the Last supper pictures.

  39. danocamera says:

    Okay, so when Juliette detonated the bomb at the end of Season 5, it caused Oceanic 815 to land at LAX as scheduled but since the chain of events had already transpired in the lives of the cast stuck in 1977, things were NOT reset for them.

    Consequently (and I can’t even speculate on the reason), they were returned to the point in time where they SHOULD be in the chain of events that they had lived through up to then.

    This means that the timeline of Oceanic 815 has been split into two separate versions. I feel like this may have been mentioned on The Transmission but something similar happens “The Wastelands,” the third book of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series. In “The Wastelands” one character uses time travel to prevent the death of another character, causing a new chain of events. As a result, both are gradually driven crazy because they become increasingly aware of the two timelines. (Ironically, the character that is saved lives in 1977!)

    I wonder if this book holds any clues as to what will happen in Lost? Either way, this season is off to an AMAZING start!! I can’t wait to hear your opinions of the premiere!!

  40. Carol from Boston says:

    I also looked at the poster in photoshop so I could get close up on everything and there definitely is someone in black on the black rock ship.

  41. Joe in Texas says:

    @Carol – oh, this is a different one, thanks for posting the link!

  42. Bryan in Ohio says:

    I can’t believe that no one is asking the question that kept me distracted from the first 10 minutes…

    How the holy hell does the island get onto the bottom of the ocean in alternate-LAX world?

  43. Knives Monroe says:

    Line of the night:

    “Nothing is irreversible”

    Damn Jack, you’re alright.

    Sawyer is saltier than ever. I feel so terrible for him.

    I’ve heard that Darlton are calling this new narrative device ‘flash-sideways’
    very innovative!

    Dogen = Greatest Other of all Time

    Kanye West would agree.

  44. Knives Monroe says:

    Also CONGRATULATIONS on the Nightline plug!
    That is epic!

  45. Carol from Boston says:

    @Bryan – read this article about this episode with questions and answers with Carlton and Damon, it poses some clues to the underwater island.

    http://popwatch.ew.com/2010/02/02/lost-premiere-damon-carlton/

  46. Rich in Cleveland says:

    As to beleaguered Ben, he still remains the leader. In a now familiar form of suggestion. someone asks who the leader is and Ben runs right out onto the scene. (Just as when Ben said he couldn’t control what came out of the jungle and all that appeared was Flocke.) So, if Ben is the leader and only he could kill Jacob, does that mean he’s the only one that can take out the man in black as well? It’s obvious he’s realized he’s made a colossal mistake by now (pun intended.)

  47. Carol from Boston says:

    quote about the poster I was talking about from TVOvermind.com

    A while ago, ABC commissioned various artists to create posters for various important scenes throughout the series. Last night, the final poster was revealed at a show, attended by Lindelof, Cuse and others. According to Lindelof and Cuse, the final poster apparently contains two clues for season 6 of LOST.

  48. @Carol thanks, I’d never seen that poster

  49. Luke in California says:

    They split the timeline! I can’t believe it.

    @Danocamera:

    As I watch this, I am also reminded of the Waste Lands. The writers of LOST are huge Stephen King fans, and J. J. Abrams is supposed to be directing the TV adaptation of the Dark Tower series.

    Luke

  50. Mike.in.VA says:

    Did they have to bring Juliet back just so they could kill her off again???? I did not want to live through her death again — once was enough.

    I’m looking forward to your podcast!

    Thanks in advance.

    Best Regards,
    Mike R.

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