Josh Holloway, you broke our hearts. Bravo. We had lowered expectations for this presumed “Kate episode,” and on most related points, we were right for having them. But for all the complaints we could readily recite from the cliché of Kate going after Sawyer actually being remarked upon to a largely flat and somewhat surreal off-island destraction we did not hate “What Kate Does.” We both actually liked it.
And for Jen to say this about an episode with Kate’s name in the title, frankly, is no small feat for “LOST.”
On the character front, Sawyer’s crushing confession hit hard. We remarked last week that Josh Holloway’s descent into nihilism was a powerful turn, and our love for his talent only grew this week. Even saddled with on-the-nose lines like, “Do what you want with him, or anybody else,” he made us believe that this nearly redeemed man now had absolutely nothing to lose. And Dogen? Not since the introduction of creepy Benjamin Linus in Season Two have we been so confused yet simultaneously charmed by a new character. He’s mysterious and brooding, yet wry and funny… in a dignified way.
Jen thought Dogen’s pill presentation was very “Matrix.” And pointed out that Dogen’s leadership strategy, using a translator to add some distance between him and the people he leads, is something that Ben probably should have considered.
It’s a shame to think that this leader has to work with knuckleheads like Justin and (the now late) Aldo. But their two line debate over whether Jin is “one of them” or not was telling. The way Dogen was clearly concerned with Sawyer’s safe return, along with the recitation of names that Dogen called for when our losties were first brought to the temple, it’s obvious there’s something special about these specific people. Our people.
And on the mythology front, the reappearance of Claire before the final thud wasn’t even the most interesting clue. It was the diagnosis of poor Sayid, who’s not a zombie, but will possibly become one in due time. He, like Claire, has been “claimed,” and a darkness is growing within him. It seems that Claire is already lost to the dark side of the force, and the question is, who else has been so infected? The late Christian Shephard seems a good guess. These would be the agents of the Man In Black.
Claire did seem to be channeling a bit of Danielle Rousseau in her half second on screen, and she’s obviously been setting Rousseau-like traps. Also, the way Justin (or Aldo?) said Rosseau had been dead for a while seemed to suggest that perhaps our crazy Frenchwoman had a share of darkness within her as well. On the other hand, out of everyone on the island, she seemed most wary of “the sickness,” and the similarity between Sayid’s torture test and Rosseau’s car battery interrogation in Season 1 is obvious. I’m going to say Rosseau managed to steer clear of infection, just not of bullets.
One thing that stood out this week? Our friends at the temple seem to be big on free will and choice. After more than one physical scuffle with Jack, the burly guards obediently step aside when he finally decides he wants to talk to Dogen. And Dogen said Sayid had to take the pill the poison pill willingly. Indeed, the way Dogen asks Sawyer to stay, coupled with the way Hurley was told the alarm wasn’t to keep them locked in, suggests that our losties aren’t entirely the prisoners they think they are.
And what of the off-island storyline? There’s no doubt Kate had several moments of deja vu, from spotting Jack at the airport, to pulling the stuffed orca out of Claire’s backpack (the same whale that Aaron clutched in “Something Nice Back Home”), to hearing Aaron’s name. A name that even surprised Claire. So we get that there are links between the world where Oceanic 815 crashed and the world where it didn’t. But honestly it still seems like a distraction, a writers’ flight of “what if” fancy, particularly when the story we all thought we were following is still unfolding on the island. Sure, it was awesome to see Ethan again (talking about needles, no less), but we didn’t even see Unlocke, Alpert, Ben and friends this week. I can only hope to be wonderfully surprised with a big payoff further down the line.
- The zombie conversation was hilarious. But Miles topped it with, “We’ll be in the food court if you need us.”
- Dogen’s dry answers to Jack were great. “What’s that?” “A baseball.” “What’s this?” “Tea.” Reminiscent of Alpert’s explanation of a compass to Locke: “It points north, John.”
- Doc Arzt pulls the
“Taxi Driver”“Midnight Cowboy” line, “I’m walkin’ here!” Just like Sawyer did when Christian hits him with the car door in “Two for the Road.”
- In contrast, Kate had some real clunkers. Her astonished lines with Sawyer in the temple as they looked at Sayid were, it seemed, practically a re-run of the same astonished conversation in the same dark corner as last week.
- So is this the end of the Kate-Sawyer side of the love triangle? I hope so. I’m not sure if I can take another go ’round. There definitely seemed to be some heat on the Kate-Jack side. I don’t care who Kate chooses. I just want her to choose and be done with it.
- It’s great to see Jin speaking English. And his desperate search for Sun is understandable. But they’ve been kept apart so long, I’m starting to forgetting the chemistry they had, and I’m afraid their reunification will be less Rose and Bernard and more “Waaalt!”
- Locations: Honolulu International Airport (LAX), Koapaka Street (where Kate left, then came back for, Claire), Hawaii Medical Center West (where Kate took Claire) and a home in Kahala (Claire’s would-be adoptive parents’ home).
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