Feb 25 2010 6:35pm

Lost Round Table: “Lighthouse”

Join me and fellow conspiracy theorists Rajan Khanna and Bridget McGovern for this week’s Lost discussion as we follow Hurley and Jack on another jaunt through the Jungle of Daddy Issues. Spoilers abound!

Theresa: I got very excited when I thought this would be a Hurley-centric episode, but, alas, we’re back on Jack. The Hurley/Miles geek lovefest will have to wait. Jack’s actually grown on me after a waning interest around season 2. I liked broken, bearded flashforward Jack. Being on the Island turns him back into a kinda whiny control freak, but when Jacob told Hurley that Jack needs to find out why he’s on the Island himself makes me anticipate the day Jack can get over his approval-seeking hero complex and become a real leader. I think Jack can have a great resolution this season, if played right.

Still wish he didn’t smash the lighthouse mirrors though. Jerk move! I wanted to see other castaways’ special mirror images. At least Hurley - c’mon, he was standing right there! I’m enjoying the way the numbers are being tied into the last season.

Now that we’re flashing sideways, seeing Jack with a kid and a semblance of uneasy happiness, I wonder if the people on the Island will have to choose between the two realities and which one to make completely true. These Earth-2 lives are lies. Their memories are false. We still don’t know what the Earth-2 people are about yet, really. Only Jack seems to realize something is amiss. When will these characters start making connections and what will be motivating them then? I don’t want the Island and everything that happened to those people to stay buried underwater. I’m rooting for the characters that survived the plane crash and had to work for redemption. (Except for Kate. She still sucks.)

Bridget: I really could have used a less Jack-centric episode this week; I understand that he’s Extremely Important (seriously, guys—we get it), but he’s just not that compelling a character, and his shtick has worn pretty thin. It’s nice to see him working out his issues and reconnecting with his son (thereby saving the world from another generation’s worth of insufferable, Shephard brand “I was never good enough for my father” moping), although it didn’t really answer very many questions. So he’s got an emo, Chopin-playing son—did we really need to spend half an episode on resolving Jack’s daddy issues at this point in the game?

Back on the Island, Hurley’s Indiana Jones and Obi Wan references go a long way toward mitigating Jack’s tortured pouting. Hurley’s become such a perfect stand-in for the Lost fanbase that I keep expecting him to bust through the fourth wall like the Kool-Aid Man one of these days and just start winking at the camera. In fact, I would have actually preferred that to watching him deal with Jack’s hissy fits—Island Jack is basically a big, boring drama queen trapped in the body of a Ken doll (he even has Ken doll hair—check out that part gouged into his skull! But I digress.)

The lighthouse fascinated me (it was so Myst)—plus, more names! I noticed that “Linus” at 117 and “Rousseau” at 20 were both crossed out; like Theresa, I would have liked to see it used as more than a setpiece for another of Jack’s temper tantrums. Clearly, it’s all part of Jacob’s master plan; was it just me, or does his relationship with Hurley seem like a repetition of the role Richard Alpert seemed to play on the Island until recently? He’s acting directly through Hurley to manipulate others, but without revealing his larger design.

Meanwhile, how creepy is axe-wielding, baby-crazy Feral Claire? She has a terrifying, Tim Burton-looking skull-baby in a crib, in case you guys missed it: that’s grade-A crazy right there. But it’s interesting to note the distinction she draws between “my dad” and “my friend.” She knows that Smoky Locke isn’t really John, but believes that her father was genuinely present; what does that tell us about Christian Shephard’s appearances on the Island? Also, did anyone else want Jin to tell her that a dingo ate her baby, or was that just me? Maybe Hurley will get around to it next week.

Rajan: I have to say that after last week’s episode I was a little disappointed with this week’s episode. Part of that was the focus on bland angsty Jack, but I think it was more that after an episode where we finally started getting answers, we were back to treading water for a week. As Bridget said, if the message was "Jack is important", then we got it. Seasons ago. The lighthouse, or rather what was in the lighthouse, was the only real revelation of the episode. The rest seemed to be mining the past, Jack reliving his glory days of whininess, and the Earth-2 sideways jaunt that I agree seemed to take too long for what it was.

Still, the Crazy Claire parts were interesting. And Kate went away when told. And some interesting questions were raised. Who is the mother of Jack’s kid, do we think? Anyone we know? What IS really up with Christian Shephard - as Bridget mentioned he wasn’t the same as "Smoky Locke" or Smocke as I will now call him. And he did disappear from the coffin as we were reminded. Will we ever see Desmond again? And should we still trust Jacob given all his manipulations?

I expect that next week Crazy Claire, Smocke and Jin will bust back into the Temple and all hell will break loose. And we may discover what’s up with milquetoast Sayid. And maybe Dogen will bust out some serious fighting moves. Hopefully with a samurai sword. I just hope that with so few episodes left before the end, that they start running wild with the revelations. Because a couple more episodes like this and we’re going to be verging on BSG territory.

Theresa DeLucci is a graduate of the 2008 Clarion West Writers Workshop. Her fiction has appeared in Chizine. She is fully supportive of a Miles/Hurley spinoff show.

Rajan Khanna is a graduate of the 2008 Clarion West Writers Workshop and his fiction has appeared in Shimmer Magazine. He lives in Brooklyn with his two cats, Chloe and Muppet.

Bridget McGovern is a lit nerd, a film geek, and a complete pop culture junkie. She enjoys David Bowie, roller coasters, and The Annotated Alice more than anyone probably should.

Lost | Tv
1. Alfvaen
Anyone else think that Desmond was the person who Jacob told Hurley they were supposed to be guiding to the Island? He seems like the obvious choice, anyway. Could also be Widmore, or even Walt or Aaron, I suppose.

I guess I presumed that Jack's ex-wife was the same ex-wife he had before. You know, Ms. Fixed-her-spine? Me, I was disappointed that we didn't get into Claire's appearance in the will a little more. Though maybe they'll have an actual will-reading where she and Jack will meet.
Mitchell Downs
2. Beamish
I am just waiting for the pending revelation that the mother of Jack's kid is Sideways Juliet who will be seen having coffee with her new beau...Sideways Sawyer.

There is no other reason to shine spotlights in that kid's incongruous bright blue eyes and give him closeups that made me fear for him hitting his head on the lens.
Dave Thompson
3. DKT
Alfvaen @ 1: You beat me to it! I really wanted Desmond to be the one Jacob was trying to bring to the island, or Walt. 108 = Wallace, though, and I have no idea who that is...

I loved all the Hurley stuff. This episode had so much good Hurley in it, especially for not being Hurley-centric. So for me, it made the Jack stuff okay.

I'm currently speculating that David's mother is Juliet - who will meet and fall in love with Sawyer in this sideways world (they'll go dutch). But I'm really confused by this sideways world. Is it really just a lie or is it something else? I think it's interesting that the ante is upped with all the characters finding some kind of contentment in this sideways world (along with true love, kids who otherwise wouldn't have been born, and other stuff). Still, I don't know that I want it to be where they all end up when this is over. But I have no idea where that storyline is going right now, even though I find it incredibly intriguing.

And Rajan - Don't scare me with comments like that BSG one! LOST *has* to end well. I want to believe!
4. rogerothornhill
I've resigned myself to the fact that I simply like Jack episodes more than 99% of those who are still with the show. We could use more whiny control freaks on television.

But seriously: still think it's him and Locke on the beach at the end, waiting for the next group of shipwreck people. Richard was on the Black Rock, so Titus W must have been on a ship before that, I'm guessing, and he became trapped as Smokey.

Either way, though, I'm guessing at least 1/3 of hardcore fans will not like the way the show ends (cf. Twin Peaks). Most fans like interactive play much more than authorial closure.

Didn't notice Rousseau and Linus on the wheel--nice. Glad someone saw who 108 was, it was bugging me, although I have no idea who Wallace is either. If the island gets saved by Mel Gibson with extensions, though, I am definitely going to be one of the unhappy campers.
Rajan Khanna
5. rajanyk
I have to say I am really liking more confident Hurley. I mean the guy was tormented and doubtful for so long despite being the one person on the island with the best heart. Seeing him become something of a leader has been cool.

Thinking of that, though, I wonder if Jacob leading him around isn't also to get Hurley to a point. Jacob urged him to send Dogen packing. He explained how he was motivating Jack. All of that could be intended to instruct Hurley in how to "lead", though manipulate could be a better word, I suppose.
Theresa DeLucci
6. theresa_delucci
I can see Hurley filling the Richard Alpert role to an extent. As much as I love Hurley, I don't think he is being built up to be a leader like Jack, Sawyer, and Locke are/were. But I can see him being a strong lieutenant.

I wonder if we're going to see Jack and Sawyer stand as the new Jacob and Man in Black at the end of this. I would have thought it would be Locke and Jack. I would've liked that. Hurley is the heart, but remember how awesome Locke was at first. He was the Island's spirit. I'm not happy the real John is dead; he was a good character and I was rooting for him to end up as a leader of something even if he was the Big Bad. It's better than what he is now, just another discarded pawn. That's giving his Earth-2 life a poignancy for me.

As a friend pointed out, John's death is kind of like when (SPOILERS for Angel) Fred was consumed by Illyria and we found out even her soul was irrevocably gone. Everything about her was just destroyed. And while I thought she was mostly an annoying Mary Sue and I'm not particularly religious, this was a fiction, not real life - she should've gotten a better end in the frame of a story. Or even a glimmer of something hopeful. I love depressing/shocking story turns, but then there's just depressing and unsatisfying.

But, I can only guess at Lost's endgame. In the meantime, I hope it *is* Desmond who's coming to the Island.
7. JCHicks
It seems that this season is mirroring season 1 in its structure. The order of the flashbacks (or flashsides) is exactly the same so far: Kate, then Locke, then Jack. So it makes sense that in this fifth episode of season 6, Jack would come to terms with some of the daddy issues that were introduced in the fifth episode of season 1 ("White Rabbit").

On a side note: The sixth episode of season 1 was called "House of the Rising Sun." Next week, we get "Sundown." Looks like the parallels will continue.
9. asotir
I must protest that the 'flash sideways' are actually 'flashback sideways' since the guys on the island are in 2007, and the guys in LA are in 2004 (the original date of their flight, after all).

If Lighthouse follows sequentially the episode 2 weeks back, then Locke2 has disposed of Sawyer, or else Sawyer has escaped Locke2 (unless, as is possible, Locke2 can be in many places at once). So, what happened to Sawyer after he and Locke2 left the cave at the bottom of Jacob's Ladder?

I love Hurley! He's not only funny, he seems to be the only one of the Losties who's not crazy.

Is anybody else getting good and sick and tired of hearing that airplane landing whoosh with every single last transition between Island and LA? It was working fine so long as the LA scenes took place at LAX, but they don't anymore, so it's quite non-diegetic and it's bugging me. It will bug you too now that you're paying attention to it!
10. rogerothornhill
@theresa--YES, Hurley as Alpert! That would be perfect! Sawyer, though, I think, is going to die. Watch out for whatever episode is his Sideways story. It's going to be sweet and poignant and he's going to realize at the last that he backed the wrong hoss.

@asotir--Yes, it's "flashback sideways" (which I somehow want to sing to the tune of Paul McCartney's "Ballroom Dancing," followed of course by "made a man of me"). If they're real. But I'm starting to suspect they aren't.

If this show has a last line one tenth as perfect as the last line of "Angel," I will be a very happy camper.

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