Posted by: cousinbrandon | May 8, 2008

LOST – Season 4, Episode 11: “Cabin Fever”

Terrible episode.

See you next week.

Oh, wait, my bad.  What I meant to say was this episode was fucking incredible.  I mean, look, there were certainly some miscues from a pacing perspective, what with the writers forced to speed things up a bit.  I guess that’s what a writer’s strike will do.  On the other hand, isn’t this what fans have been clamoring for since the show began?  Didn’t everyone bitch and moan for answers?  Well, here they are, you vultures.  Have at them.  So “Cabin Fever” was jam packed with shit that I’m going to try to run through as it actually unfolded.  But that probably won’t work, either.

1. Buddy Holly.  Well, indirectly, that is.  We open up with Locke’s teenage mother dropping the needle on her record of Buddy Holly’s “Everyday”.  Now if I remember correctly, Buddy Holly died in a plane crash, yes?  Anyhoo, we find out (actually, we may have found this out in the kidney theft episode) that Locke’s mother’s name is Emily, which was also the name of Ben’s mother who died in labor.  So there were two things that caught my eye in this opening sequence:  1) Emily’s mother (Locke’s grandmother) references the older man Emily’s dating, only we don’t get his name.  Should we assume the mystery man is Anthony Cooper, and that he knocked her up; and 2) who was driving the car?  I mean, I’m not sure that it matters who hit Emily, but at the same time I don’t like to take things for granted.  What’s more, we’ve seen a lot of car accidents on this show, so I want to think there’s something more to this.

2. Richard Alpert, Take 1.  So, the ageless wonder returns in multiple scenes this episode.  The first time we see him, he’s creepily staring at baby John through the hospital window.  (Incidentally, the nurse explains to Emily and grandma that John is “special”; that he fought off infections and illnesses, and he’s they youngest preemie to ever survive at that hospital.  Nah, nothing to look into there.  Anyone else starting to think that, perhaps, Locke can’t die?  At least not yet, that is.  After all, he’s the chosen one, the man of faith.  He’s destined to be there on that island, so despite being three months premature, having his kidney “stolen,” being thrown through the window of a high-rise, being shot . . . well, clearly he’s not meant to die yet.  Is this some sort of course-correcting?)

3. Richard Alpert, Take 2.  In their second meeting, Richard meets up with Locke in what must be Locke’s foster home.  Nice allusions not only to the drawing Locke did (Smokey, anyone?), but the fact that Locke’s playing backgammon.  Richard pulls out the various objects — baseball mitt, compass, vial of what looked like either sand or the stuff sprinkled around Jacob’s cabin, the book (Book of Laws, I believe), comic book (with writing that reads “What was the secret of the mysterious ‘hidden land’!” and “Does it pay to ignore the voice of warning!”), and, of course, the knife.  What’s crazy, though, is that Richard asks Locke which items are his already.  Already?!  Clearly Richard was pleased when Locke chose the compass and vial, but pissed when he grabbed the knife.  Now, all three selections made sense in my mind, as we’ve seen Locke utilize (more or less) all of these things on the island.  Is the implication, then, that by choosing the knife, there is a suggestion of violence?  Of Locke demonstrating some sort of affinity for murder?  Again, does this all call back to them being “the good guys”?  Good guys, after all, wouldn’t need instruments of violence/death, would they?

4. Horace Godspeed.  We haven’t seen Horace since Ben’s flashback episode where he and his father came to the island after being recruited by — that’s right — Horace.  Here we see him in Locke’s dream, chopping down trees (sorry, chopping down the same tree over and over again) to build Jacob’s cabin, a place for Horace and his wife to get away from the “DI”.  What’s more, he’s got a nosebleed, he doesn’t have a nosebleed; then he’s got one, then not.  On one hand the “looping” in this dream seems right in that dreams are typically illogical.  On the other hand, isn’t there a definite suggestion of time, or lack thereof?  What I mean is, doesn’t looping suggest that everything is happening all at once?  I mean, there are clearly overtones, once again, of there really being no past, present or future, but a blending of the three.  Additionally, he tells Locke he’s been dead for 12 years, which tells us the timeframe of when Ben committed the purge.  Oh, and it was great that the last thing he said to Locke was “Godspeed.”  And so where does Horace ultimately lead Locke and the gang?…

5. The Dharma Pit.  So we’ve not seen the pit of Dharma skeletons since Locke rose from the proverbial dead near the end of season 3.  The one bit of bad writing here was when Ben said, “I don’t know what I was thinking” in response to why he shot Locke and left him in the pit to die.  Just seemed not calculated enough for Ben, as I don’t see him as one who would admit to making a half-assed decision.  What was interesting here was Ben’s denial of being responsible for their deaths.  “What happened to them?” asked Hurley.  “He did,” replied Locke, gesturing to Ben Linus.  Again, Ben denies responsibility, I believe indicating that he was following orders, that he wasn’t always the leader.  Again we’re seeing that Ben (if not Richard Alpert, Jacob and the rest of the Others) is primping Locke for the role of island leader.  But then, isn’t this what Locke’s always been readying for?

6. “You’ll never be a superhero.”  That’s what Locke’s high school teacher told him, anyway.  (And by the way, did anyone else catch the Geronimo Jackson poster in Locke’s locker?)  He tells Locke that his destiny is to surround himself with test tubes and beakers, that he’s a man of science and he’ll never be the quarterback — the superhero — he yearns to be.  But what does Locke say?  He tells him that no one will tell him what he can’t do, something we’ve obviously heard Locke say before.  I mean, after all, that’s how he got on the island, right?  By telling the travel agent to fuck off, more or less.  But don’t you see the irony here?  All this time we’ve seen Locke want nothing more than to discovery his fate, to be a hero who saved everyone, to abandon the wheelchair and life’s constraints in order not to be the kid crammed into his locker, the man conned by his own father.  All this time Locke’s destiny has been there for the taking, and yet he’s done nothing but ignore it at every turn.  As a boy, he had the chance to go to Richard’s “school,” but failed the test.  In high school he could have gone to “Science Camp,” but passed.  The island has been reaching out to Locke his entire life, and Locke has been too blind to see that.  The irony, then, is that he could have been the hero he’s always wanted to be, yet he kept on ignoring his chance.  All his life, it’s been Locke who was supposed to come to the island and lead these people, not Ben.  Why else would Ben have developed a life-threatening tumor while Locke has survived all sorts of ridiculous perils?  Now that Locke is there — Locke, who can speak to and hear Jacob — the island no longer has a need for Ben.  Which leads me, possibly, to this…

7. Locke is Jacob.  This now seems entirely possible to me.  I was thinking about the first time we saw the cabin, and we could see the shadow of the man sitting in the chair.  Why now, for some reason, am I envisioning his profile as looking like Locke with hair?  Maybe I’m way off there, but Locke finally realizing his destiny in speaking to Christian in the cabin.  And what does he ask Christian?  What is the question he was meant to ask?  “How do I save the island?”  Again, here we see an allusion to Locke as superhero.  What’s more, if he has the ability to save the island, wouldn’t he, then, be the man in charge?  And wouldn’t the man in charge have to be Jacob?

8. The Doctor.  First of all, when Captain Gault tells Omar to meet Keamy in the engine room, Omar picks up his receiver en route and you can hear the Morse Code beeping.  Second, Omar tells the doctor that he received a message from the island, telling him the doctor washed up and his throat was slit.  And third, we inevitably see Keamy slit the doctor’s throat and throw him overboard.  What’s crazy, then, is that we’re seeing a later episode, yet the doctor’s body washed up a couple episodes ago.  In other words, what’s happening on the boat is happening in the past.

9. Sayid’s Boat.  So Sayid is off to the island to begin ferrying his friends back before Keamy and crew go apeshit all over the fucking place.  (What’s more, what exactly was that item strapped to Keamy’s arm?  I was guessing some sort of detonator to blow everything to shit on the island, but I wasn’t sure.)  Seeing as how he’ll only be able to take so many people at a time, and seeing as how we know Sayid is one of the Oceanic 6, and seeing as how the others are Jack, Kate, Hugo, Aaron and Sun, I think we can assume that:  A) we know who’s getting in his boat; and B) somehow all of the losties will be meeting up in the same location sometime soon, seeing as how Hurley and Aaron are not with Jack, Kate and Sun.

10. Abbadon.  Yes, the return of Lieutenant Daniels, aka Matthew Abbadon, this time appearing as an orderly in Locke’s rehab hospital.  A couple things here:  1) he hasn’t aged a bit, a la Richard.  I mean, this is Locke’s flashback, afterall, and we’ve seen Abbadon in the future with Hurley and giving instructions to Naomi.  So, I think it’s safe to assume he’s tied up with Richard somehow; 2) he’s the one responsible, more or less, for getting Locke on the island, since he suggested the walkabout, which we all know is why Locke was in Australia to begin with; and 3) he tells Locke that when they see each other again, Locke owes him one.  So, anyone else think we’ll see Abbadon on the island, perhaps in the temple, sometime soon?  And finally, because I’m way tired and way hungover…

11. Claire.  After her house was blown up, I remember saying what a crock of shit it was that she survived with nothing more than a couple bruises and a case of the dizzies.  I mean, how in the hell do you survive your house being blown to bits?  Answer:  you don’t.  That’s right, y’all.  I’m now going out on a limb and predicting that Claire is, in fact, dead.  After all, Christian is dead, and yet there they are, hanging out together in the cabin as if it’s all good in the hood.  She’s supposed to be there, just as Locke is supposed to be on the island.  What’s more, wouldn’t it explain why she abandoned Aaron?  I mean, the dead can’t raise the living, right?  Aaron had to be left for the living, which is why he’s in Sawyer’s care.  Additionally, wouldn’t her being dead also explain:  A) why Miles was suddenly so interested in her; and B) why she said “Charlie” when Sawyer “woke” her after her house exploded?  I mean, maybe she was actually seeing Charlie, who is also dead?  Finally, her being dead would more than explain why she’s not off the island raising Aaron, because there’s simply no way she would have abandoned Aaron by choice and sent him along in Kate’s care.

Okay, I’m pooped.

Until next time, have at it, you vultures!

BD

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