Posted by: cousinbrandon | May 1, 2008

LOST – Season 4, Episode 10: “Something Nice Back Home”

I realize I’ve been slacking, but it’s been a tough week.  In any event, here goes.

1. The Smoke Alarm.  So this was rather subtle, but did anyone else make the connection regarding Jack and the smoke alarm in the hospital?  I mean, the alarm is going off, Jack changes it, and who does he see but his father?  As many of us have speculated previously, Smokey has the ability to change forms — to take the shape of others, perhaps after “reading their minds,” so to speak.  Well, here’s Jack in the flash forward, suddenly confronted by his dead father, and the smoke alarm is beeping.  You think the writers are trying to tell us something?  [On a side note, my brother and I were laughing at the fact that a battery-operated smoke alarm was going off in a hospital.  Um, last time I checked hospitals don’t use such pedestrian alarms.  Furthermore, I don’t think doctors are typically recruited to change the batteries.]

2. Star Wars.  It’s nearly impossible to watch any sort of protagonist-based show without various Star Wars allusions.  What’s more, it’s impossible to consider Star Wars without alluding to Joseph Campbell’s Hero with a Thousand Faces.  Basically, Campbell’s premise was based on the hero’s journey, wherein the protagonist must leave home, find a mentor, encounter evil, and return having completed his mission.  We see it in Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, even The Fisher King.  Well, Lost is no different.  Not only did we see Ben’s baton (light saber?) last week, but this week Jack trips over a tiny Millennium Falcon strewn about the floor.  Nice little nod by the writing crew.

3. “You’re not supposed to raise him.”  First, let me just say that the scene with Jack and Hurley in the mental ward may have been one of my favorite scenes ever on the show.  It was not only creepy and even sad, but well acted.  Second, Charlie’s message to Jack was a bit of a double-entendre, no?  I mean, the obvious implication is that Jack isn’t supposed to raise Aaron, yes?  But what if we consider a different meaning of the word “raise,” as “raising the dead”?  Perhaps Jack isn’t supposed to “raise” his father from the dead?  Granted, I think it relates to Aaron, specifically because Hurley makes mention of the fact that Jack, too, will be visited by someone (his father).  That would imply that Jack has no say as to whether or not his father is “raised.”  Either way, a fun notion to consider.  And by the way, who’s to say that Charlie appearing to Hurley isn’t the smoke monster, as well?

4. Kate and Jack.  Well, between being visited by his dead father and discovering that Kate is keeping secrets (doing favors for Sawyer), yeah, I can understand the lapse into drugs and alcohol.  Nice job, I thought, of showing us where Jack’s chemical dependency originated, and why.  I mean, considering the fact that his first wife cheated (bitches, man), is it any wonder that Jack might feel a bit depressed and anxiety-ridden to see it quite possibly happening again?  What’s more, this storyline nicely played into the season 3 finale, wherein Kate and Jack met at the airport and Kate needed “to get back to him.”  I called it then, that she needed to get back to her baby (Aaron).  Since we know Sawyer wasn’t one of the Oceanic 6, we were assured that it wasn’t Sawyer she needed to get back to.  My question, though, is this:  how is she in communication with Sawyer?  Is she “speaking” to Sawyer through Ben?  Through someone else?  And by the way, “He’s not even related to you!”  No, but he is related to you, Jack.

5. Clementine.  So Kate needed to do a favor for Sawyer.  Any chance it involves Sawyer’s daughter, Clementine?  You know, his child from the woman he was scamming back in, I believe, season 2?

6. The Coffin.  Something I haven’t considered for a while, but does all of this newfound information lend credence to the notion that it’s Ben in the coffin in the season 3 finale?  I’m unsure as to whether we know this for certain, but can we assume that the season 3 finale was the most “futuristic” flash forward that we’ve seen?  In other words, are the other flash forwards from this season all before the season 3 finale?  I think that’s the case.  Now, if Ben were, in fact, dead, his death might be enough to trigger Jack to call Kate and insist that they need to get back to the island.  Maybe seeing that no one showed up at his funeral (after all, we know that Rousseau and Alex are both dead) reminded Jack of his own mortality?  Or maybe something else…

7. “We’re the good guys.”  I’m going out on limb here, but more and more I’m starting to believe that we need to suspend our basic definition of the word “good” and instead consider it from a more philosophical stance.  Does doing “good” mean doing “right”, or does it mean positively affecting the most people by any means necessary?  In other words, if one believes the he’s acting in the best interest of the most people, isn’t he, in a sense, a “good” guy, at least in his own mind?  If Ben has been trying to preserve the secrets of the island by any means necessary for all this time in order to benefit others, isn’t he, in a manner of speaking, good?  Furthermore, I think we’re going to find out that the Oceanic 6 were instructed to shut their mouths about those folks on the island as a sort of bribe.  In other words, we’ll let you get off the island, but you can’t ever mention that others stayed behind.  What I’m wondering, though, is did they all choose to stay behind, or was their some sort of power struggle that resulted in some of them being forced to stay behind?  If so — if Jack and the rest of the Oceanic 6 acted selfishly and lied about the survivors still on the island — then they’re not really “good” guys, now are they?

8. Miles.  Since Miles uncovered the corpses of Alex and Rousseau and we know that he can “communicate” with the dead, any chance we get a sort of flashback episode from the perspective of Rousseau and/or Alex as interpreted by Miles?  Just a thought.

9. Jack’s Appendix.  Rose makes mention that she thought the island was a healing island, or something to that effect.  So what gives?  Well, I’ll tell you what gives:  man of science, man of faith.  That’s right, it’s a shout out to way back when, when we realized that Locke is a man of faith and Jack is a man of science.  That Locke believes, whereas Jack needs empirical evidence.  That being the case, perhaps Jack’s appendix bursting was the island’s way of trying to rid itself of Jack, particularly before he got off the island “any day now” and told others of the island’s existence.  I mean, we saw Rose healed; we saw Locke healed; we saw Ben healed.  (And speaking of which, would Ben have actually died in surgery?  I mean, would the island have allowed that?  I’m now confusing myself, actually, seeing as how Ben contracted the tumor while on the island.  Did he do something to warrant punishment by the island?)

10. “Where’s all this power coming from?”  Good question, Daniel.  Where is all this power coming from?  I mean, what’s making the power station go?  And what’s more, how about Charlotte’s response:  “Add that to the list.”  And by the way, why does Charlotte speak Korean?  Any chance she’s tied up with Sun’s father somehow?

11. C. S. Lewis.  Okay, so we already know that Charlotte is a C. S. Lewis, as well, but how about the fact that this episode contained yet another reference to Alice in Wonderland?  That’s right, in the flash forward, do you want to take a guess what bedtime story Jack was reading to Aaron?  How about Alice in Wonderland!  And what are the lines Jack reads to Aaron?  Well, none other than these:  “Who in the world am I? Ah, that’s the great puzzle!”  Sweet.  Fucking.  Jesus.  Oh, and one more little nugget on Mr. Lewis:  according to Wikipedia (of which I’m not a fan), C. S. Lewis was known as Clive Staples “Jack” Lewis.  Wait, don’t we know someone else named Jack?

12. Christian.  So, he appeared to Claire on the island and Jack off the island all in the same episode, yet in two different time periods.  After re-watching the episode, I noticed that he was wearing a suit when he appeared to Jack, but not when he appeared to Claire.  What I don’t remember, though, is what he was wearing the last time he actually spoke to Claire in person (in the airport, I think)?  In other words, is he appearing to Claire as she remembered him, and appearing to Jack as he remembered him?  I’d say yes.  And speaking of Claire, there’s Aaron, suddenly alone, cradled by no more than some jungle leaves as Sawyer shouts her name.  Crazy.

13. Hurley.  One last thought, but I believe it was the season 4 premier in which Hurley told Jack that he made a mistake, that he shouldn’t have gone with Locke.  All of sudden, I’m wondering:  he shouldn’t have gone with Locke when the camp split in two, or he shouldn’t have gone with Locke (and Ben) to find Jacob’s cabin?

I’m spent.

So until next time, have at it, you vultures!



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