Lost – ‘The Lighthouse’ – 6.5

About a week ago, I found an article on EW.com where Matthew Fox and Evangeline Lilly announced their post-Lost plans. That got me thinking – how about dreaming up some future career marks for some of my favorite Lost contributors?

Before hitting that proverbial wish list, I’ll cover Fox and Lilly.

According to Fox, he aims to ape David Caruso and turn his back on TV for good. After a successful run on Party of Five followed by his arc on Lost (a character which was originally written with Michael Keaton in mind), he wants to explore the Hollywood hills and make his mark in the movie biz. While I think that’s a decent plan – to trade on his goodwill from this show – I’m not sure Fox has exactly what it takes to be the strong leading man on the big screen. While I like the dude, there’s a dryness to him (think David Duchovny) that works better in establishing a long-running character. TV seems to fit him just right. Besides, we’re still basking in the Golden Age of television drama. I’d take Friday Night Lights, The X-Files, Lost, Millennium, Battlestar Galactica and countless other shows over most multiscreen fare any day.

But, I get it. Television drama is a long haul and multiple seasons have got to wear on a soul. Factor in a show that drenches its players in several layers of grime and tosses them out into the great wide open of steamy Hawaii and I’m sure a nice cushy “desk job” looks good right about now. But, I think Fox should choose carefully – passing over the second rate leading man roles that will be tossed his way (think big-budget B-movies like 2012) for sharper-hewn character work. He’d make a decent CIA analyst in a Bourne flick, for example.

As for Evangeline Lilly, she’s apparently getting out of acting completely. I don’t buy it. It sounds like the same brand of exhausted hyperbole that celebrities spout whenever they just need a little R & R. It’s like that time Stephen King kicked “writing” four novels ago. So, she’ll be back and if I were her agent, I’d stear clear of heavy dramas in favor of something light. Let’s see if Evie has got some comedic chops. Guest her on Community or How I Met Your Mother – I think she’d surprise us. So, that should say volumes about how I feel about Evangeline Lilly. There’s a fine line between the character and the actor and I think she’s got talent. I just don’t like her character. But I’d like to see more of her work.

As for the others, first and foremost – we need to see more Josh Holloway – and not just shirtless, ladies. If there is one guy who has really grown on me over the years, it’s Sawyer. At the beginning, he was the redneck jerk. But somewhere along the line, he became the charming rogue and ultimately the heart of the show. He is all grimy nobility. And I think he would make an awesome action hero. There was a lot of talk a few years ago concerning an Escape from New York reboot. At the time, Gerard Butler was tapped to take on the iconic Snake Plissken. Not bad – but for my money, Holloway would make a great Snake. He’s this show’s Han Solo and I liked to see that edgy blend of mirth and menace tapped. This is a guy who should demand leading man stature.

Terry O’Quinn (Locke) on the other hand will continue to carve an indelible career of great character choices. I’ve followed this guy since the mid-80’s slasher flick, The Stepfather. Early on, he was tapped as the psycho. Then he took on the military roles. When he essayed Millennium’s mysterious mentor, Peter Watts, I thought the role fit him perfectly. The same goes for his CIA spook in Alias. But John Locke is the role of a career that only grows more interesting with every thing he does. I’m not going to predict his future because I think he has a long career ahead of him in these unique character roles. He’s like the small screen Gene Hackman and he should be treasured for that.

Well, that’s all for now. Let’s get Lost.

1.   I have a weird relationship with the two top-line stars. I think when Lost first started, Jack and Kate were positioned as the male and female leads or at least, among the ensemble, the audience was directed to invest more in their plight as the supposed “leaders” of the group and yet, I always found their “issues” to be the most plodding and melodramatic. For starters, both have Daddy issues. Boo Hoo. So you blew up your Daddy! So your Daddy helped you in surgery! Get over it!!! Instead I gravitated to characters like Sawyer who I think truly evolved and became the heart of the show – the Han Solo of the piece. I never liked Luke much anyway.

2.   That being said, I think all of Jack’s melodrama is now paying off greatly. We needed to see him built up as a supposed leader, the Man of Science in stern opposition to Locke’s Man of Faith – and then see him cast down to the ground when all of his supposed plans to “fix” things ended up being nothing but pure folly. For my money, there hasn’t been a scene as heartbreaking as that Season 3 finale, when Jack revealed his suicidal tendencies to crash on the island once more. When Jack was at his lowest, I finally started to like the character and actually wanted to see him whole again. It took the supposed big man to be royally humbled for me to groove to his character arc.

3.   Which meant that last night’s episode, which like the Kate-centric hour a couple weeks back, needed to slow things down a bit before picking up the tempo. (Note the clever nod by the writers in the pic above). And as a Dad, the alterna-Jack story line really played to my sympathies.

4.   That was the big wrinkle in this new time line. Jack has a son. Now, we never meet the Mom but I’m guessing that it’s Jack’s ex-wife played by Julie Bowen. In the original time line, Jack fixed her up, they married and then eventually drifted away. In this altered timeline, it appears they still divorced however this time, he fathered a child. And in this new timeline, Jack finally makes a big step toward resolving his lingering Daddy issues.

5. While the off-island, alternative time line stuff wasn’t devoted towards furthering the mythology – it did manage to suck me in, citing the same reasons that flicks like Rudy coax tears from my eyes. I’m a sucker for anything that plays on that bond between father and son – that’s what being a sometimes self-doubting Dad will do to you. Now, I think I’m a good Dad but I certainly have my moments where I wish I had a modicum more patience. We always want to be better than we are. So this episode played right into the sweet and sappy nectar of my cerebral cortex. And seeing Jack and his son make a big step towards understanding at the end – as Jack finally heard “the music” that his son said he wouldn’t understand – it just made for a nice bit of closure for one half of Jack’s splintered realities.

6.   Speaking of which – we saw more evidence of bleeding through the time lines. At the beginning, Jack notes a mysterious scar on his abdomen – which called back to the series premiere, when Jack noted a minor cut on his neck. That feeling of déjà vu dawned and when Jack called his Mom, she reminded him that he had is appendix removed as a child. The thing is, we know that Jack had the appendix removed on the island a couple seasons back. So, in this alternate time line, it’s true that the appendix was likely removed as a kid but this version of Jack is also plagued by nagging thoughts of what has happened different in another time line.

7.   Which brings the Lighthouse into play.

8.   Following Jacob’s instructions, Hurley gets pulled away from a friendly game of Tic-Tac-Toe among fellow Ghost Whisperers to bring Jack on a his own walkabout. Loved how Jacob gave Hurley the exact phrasing that pushes Jack’s buttons. Whereas MiB would not-so-subtly waltz in as Christian and yank Jack by the scruff, Jacob aims for the psychological bent by giving him that phrase that simply drives Jack crazy. And then they are off but not before Dogen discovers Hurley lurking in the Temple of Gloom. I was struck by that symbol. What does it mean? Is there an Egyptologist in the house?

9.   Also, here’s hoping we get a translation of what Dogen said to Hurley when he announced his candidacy. As Jacob mimicked Tricia Helfer and lurked alongside the two, whispering sweet nothings into Hurley’s ear, Dogen issues a warning that Hurley was told he wouldn’t like to hear translated. I’m sure my fellow Lostralians are feverishly working to translate it now. It’s probably the one key to everything. Either that or he just saved a ton of money by switching to Geico.

10.   It was a nice touch to stop by the cave once again. That little visit served many masters. First, the asthma inhaler was a nice shout back to Season 1. The Boone-Shannon bickering seems so long ago. Here’s to innocent times among quasi-incestuous siblings.

11.   Secondly, the writers gave us a little wink and a nudge with the reappearance of the skeletons. The main reason I’m glad fanboys don’t drive the ship of most of my beloved properties is because most of them are insane when they let their minds run wild. Those skeletons, which appeared in the first season, have been central to so many outlandish theories – with everything from Adam and Eve, to Amelia Earhart, to a time traveling Rose & Bernard cited as the source of said skeletal remains. As I wrote about a few weeks ago, some mysteries are there just to make this place more mysterious – we don’t need answers to everything. I think Hurley’s little reference to them traveling back to prehistoric days, dying and then becoming the skeletons was the writers way of signaling this is one mystery that doesn’t need solving – and I completely agree. Nicely played.

12.   Finally, Jack was reunited with his Dad’s empty coffin – which was pivotal to his enlightenment when finally finding the Lighthouse. This was a journey of soul-searching that appears to be coming to a head.

13.   And it’s in the Lighthouse that Jack’s mind is blown. As they continued cranking the mirrors to different coordinates (108 is Wallace, who is crossed out already so I’m not sure that’s the dude that’s coming to the island), Jack began to spy different sites in the mirrors.

14.   And now we get a clear reference to an oft-repeated phrase. “Through the Looking Glass”. Early on, we spied a copy of Lewis Carroll’s collected works. Here we finally find “the Looking Glass”.

15.   Now, Jack assumes that this is how Jacob keeps tabs on everyone he intends to bring to the island – and my guess is that is partially correct. But could this also be a window into other worlds as well – similar to how Carroll’s Looking Glass worked?

16.   It’s interesting that Jack smashed one Looking Glass with another. Either way, Jacob says  that whoever is coming to the island will find it another way. This was all just another method of pushing Jack to his destiny. As he noted to Hurley, for some people, he can simply hop in the back of a cab and tell them what to do – others need to stare out at the ocean for awhile.

17.   I think we are getting closer and closer to the theory that Jack could become the new “shepherd” of the island.

18.   Finally, there is the crazy Claire business. This is the one element that didn’t hold much surprise. Was there ever any doubt that Claire’s “friend” was MiB Locke? After all, we last saw her in the company of MiB Christian a couple seasons back and after Dogen’s revelation that she had been turned, we knew exactly who she was “shacking” up with.

19.   An axe to the gutt confirms it though. She’s bad news. And it appears Jin is going to escort the evil that Jacob needed Jack far away from, to the temple.

See you all next week for Episode 6.6 – ‘Sundown’.

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Comments now closed (14)

  • i figure that the person ‘coming’ to the island is actually jack. when jacob says that hurley and jack have to go because someone is coming to the island and they have to go find ‘it’. i figured that the it is the mirror thing….and when jack figures everything out he will be coming to the island with a different outlook….

  • One other thing – and this continues the parallel nature of this Season to the first one.

    In Season 1, the 5th episode was titled “White Rabbit” and it was about Jack chasing his dead Dad all over the island – finally finding water in the cave.

    Lighthouse, the 5th episode of Season 6, featured a number of Alice in Wonderland allusions (hence white rabbit) and spotlighted Jack’s trip back to that same cave. Also, in the side story, instead of chasing his Dad everywhere – now he was the Dad chasing a son.

    I really think Stacy is on to something with her theory that Jack is the new Jacob.

    Also – I forgot to mention this is the synopsis, but at one point, Hurley pondered why they never saw the Lighthouse before. My guess is that it’s the same reason why sometimes you can find Jacob’s cabin and sometimes you don’t. It reveals itself to whoever needs to see it.

    Either that or the island just became the most kick-ass game of Myst!!!

  • Wondering besides Jack’s child home what the other locations were in the mirrors. One looked like the place Jin & Sun met or married at. What about the church?

  • I was thinking the church was the place where Jacob came to young Sawyer – after his parents’ funeral.

  • I might be showing off my Star Trek nerdery here, but those “looking glass” mirrors on the lighthouse reminded me of and episode of The Next Generation where this ancient and highly advanced civilization, The Iconians would travel around the galxy through portholes (think something like a Stargate, but without the toilet flushing effect) conquering planets. They were eventually wiped out, but their technology remained, and was eventually destroyed to keep it out of the hands of the enemies.

  • ok, so we were total dorks and watched the lighthouse wheel w/ all the names crossed off it in super slow motion – and we saw that #51 was “Austen” not crossed off – what does #51 mean? is it just an extra #? what does it have to do with the 4-8-15-16-23-42?? where does 51 fit in??? my mind is blown.

    and yeah, i want to know what dogen said to hurley as a warning.

    i’m still wondering here if jacob really is good, or if MiB is….

    crazy claire was freaky – i’m glad that jin covered up the truth and said he was lying. b/c kate is bound to run into claire running around the island. is jin really going to take them to the temple??

    i’m confused, as usual, but totally enjoying the ride!!

    ps – i missed sawyer last night. poor punkin, he must be off crying over juliet somewhere….i must go find him and give him a hug! 😉

  • I think Kate isn’t tied to one of those core numbers – but if she’s not crossed off then maybe she is a candidate. That being said, 4-8-15-16-23-42 add up to 108 so 51 has no place in that equation – so poor little Katie has to sit one out once again.

    I think given Jacob’s warning at the end of the episode, Jin is bringing a Trojan Horse to the temple.

  • Does Jin even know the secret passage? Thought they let he and Kate out the front door with the Others. They will likely use him to get in there though, that seems pretty obvious and really, not much point on dwelling on it this much.

    Stacy is on to something with Jacob’s phrasing at the start. He says someone is coming to the island and needed Hurley to make sure the island is found by it, not them, right? Something like that. That said, Jack has to be the guy. Like Jacob said, he can tell Hurley to do things, but needs Jack to find his own way without being directly told. I am still hoping for Jack v. Sawyer in the end.

    I don’t remember, but did Jack have a son with in the original timeline? Something that was never revealed there or it just didn’t happen. Interesting change. Will also be interesting to see what Christian left Claire. Jack didn’t seem too bent up, so probably not everything.

    I too thought the church was for Sawyer and the pagoda was likely a Kwon.

    What about Jack running into Dogen in the alternate timeline? Not much there to say I guess, but his wisdom makes you feel like he knows what is up… maybe a little. I do want to hear what he said to Hurley, so I will await for you to dig that up on the intertubes.

    As for your initial thoughts about after Lost for some of our favorite leads, I agree with you. Fox needs to stick to good supporting roles. Lilly would probably do well in a sitcom setting, but at the very least, I hope she is lying. Holloway, well, I agree he’d probably be a good Snake, I am interested to see if he is more than a one trick pony. Finally, O’Quinn just needs to stay on the beaten path. It has always served him well and will continue to do so.

  • @Sean – Jack never had a son the first time out. He had that relationship with Julie Bowen but it soured pretty quickly. They showed enough of their married life and there never was a son (nor any sign of one) so this is a major change for him.

    As for Jin – I doubt he knows the secret passage although he does know how to get into the temple (due to his time traveling shenanigans with the Frenchies).

  • I really enjoyed this episode, loved it. And I’m with you Ed, as a dad, it pulls some strings- like listening to Cat’s in the Cradle. I love how all of these posts identify all of the previous season/episode counterparts- something I don’t usually pay attention to. The Jack to become Jacob theory is surely on its way, and Sean, that ending gets more and more possible with each episode. I still haven’t ruled out MiB being good, or if Jacob’s intentions are all good, like Sarah mentioned. Seems unlikely but that’s the good part, not predictable. And I agree with everything on the actors, no doubt.

  • Here’s a really “out there” question, and may be nothing really. Lewis Carrol was a pseudonym for Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. I know there is a Japanese Zen Buddhist teacher named Dogen, but Dogen/Dodson are kiiinda similar. This is a stretch though.

    It was never a question in my mind that MiB Locke was Claire’s “friend”. Even crazy, I still hate her.

  • Dogen is another in a line of characters named after philosophers – example: John Locke. I looked it up a couple of week’s ago and one of Dogen’s works invokes Dharma and enlightenment. Seriously – Dharma is in the title – Treasury in the Eye of the True Dharma.