Saturday, October 10, 2009
Lost Rewatch Week #17: Left Behind, One of Us & Catch 22
Good afternoon, Lost friends! Welcome to this week's installment of the Lost Rewatch. I am still recovering from a very annoying and lingering illness, so I apologize for the delay once again.
Given that this batch of three episodes featured Juliet quite heavily, I enjoyed revisiting her initial arrival both on the island and at the survivor's beach.
So let's handcuff ourselves to one another and run through a jungle of theories together.
Anagrams Are Us
Juliet meets Alpert and Ethan at Herarat Aviation before heading to the island.
Herarat holds two meanings; it warns us that Juliet is a rat (HER A RAT), which we discover at the end of One of Us when it is revealed that she is still working for Ben, and it is an anagram for Earhart (as in Amelia...who disappeared while flying over an island).
Desmond had a brief stint at a monastery which produced a wine called Moriah Vineyards, which is an anagram for Harmed Visionary.
This isn't an anagram, but it is interesting...Boone's last name was Carlyle, and Penny was heading to Carlisle when she first met Desmond. Even at the basic level, nothing is mere coincidence on Lost.
On the run in Iowa, Kate meets Cassidy, Sawyer's ex and his daughter Clementine's baby mama.
In S5, Kate reunited with Cassidy to give her money for Clementine (per Sawyer's pre-helicopter jump wish).
After the Others abandoned their village, Sayid noted that "it's like fifty people disappeared into thin air."
Now that we are aware of an underground tunnel system, an obvious conclusion is that they descended beneath New Otherton to travel to set up camp in a new location.
Fate vs. Free Will
Yet another example/argument for this popular topic:
Ben, to Juliet: "If you CHOOSE to stay, I promise you, we will save Rachel's life."
File under...we'll never know.
Here are the facts: Juliet is a fertility doctor. She has amazing reflexes and either serious self-defense or marital arts training, and has dislocated her should FOUR times. One of these things is not like the other.
Locke: "I don't want to go home, Kate."
Cassidy, to Kate: "I fell in love with the wrong guy."
Juliet, to Kate: "Ben has a thing for mind games."
Juliet, to Kate, about Jack: "You broke his heart."
Diane Janssen, to daughter Kate: "You can't help who you are, Katherine."
One of Us
Richard Alpert, to Juliet: "The place we're taking you to is special. You'll see things there that you never imagined."
Ben, to Juliet, about her sister's cancer: "Jacob said he would take care of it himself."
Juliet, to Ben: "If you can cure cancer, then why do you have it?"
Ben: "I'm not a liar, Juliet."
Ben: "We'll find more mothers. Who knows, maybe there's one on the plane."
Jack, to Juliet: "You want to get off this island more than anything in the world. It makes you one of us."
Brother Campbell, to Desmond: "For whatever reason, your path led you here and now you're ONE OF US."
Desmond: "I had a calling. I was supposed to leave everything that mattered behind, sacrifice all of it, for a greater calling."
Ruth, Desmond's ex: "Well it's a good thing a SHEPHARD didn't help you up."
Brother Campbell, to Desmond: "You've just spent too much time running away to realize what you may be running toward."
Logistics & Locations
I've often pondered and researched possible locations of the island, taking into consideration that it has the ability to 'move.' But the logistics in One of Us are still baffling to me. Allegedly, the sub carrying Ethan and Juliet left from the Miami area. They arrive on the island wearing the same clothes, unwrinkled.
Regardless of whether that the island at that time was located near Fiji, Micronesia, Indonesia or in the general South Pacific...submarines do not travel much faster than 30-40 miles per hour. That sub has been around since the early Dharma days, and is probably not updated with the most modern technology. Thus, it is beyond unlikely that they actually travel to the island via the sub. Herarat Aviation must be one of their departure points for flights to an unknown locale where the sub is docked. That is why they drug the passengers; not for a rough trip but so that they have no idea HOW they got there. After they fly, the sub is the last method of transportation; it takes them to their final destination, the island. Ethan's comment that "the LAST leg is a little bumpy" merely corroborates this line of thought.
The cord leading from the beach into the water and Looking Glass station is not located more than a few miles down the beach from where the survivors are living. So how is it that NO ONE besides Desmond & his hiking buddies saw or heard Naomi's helicopter?
Lost Book Club
Naomi's bag contained a Portuguese copy of Catch-22 by Joseph Heller. The book relates to Desmond on at least two levels; events and perspectives are presented out of order, and one has to decide whether to act selfishly to benefit himself or to work with others for the greater good...
Juliet meets Ben for the first time, upon her arrival to the island via sub.
We find out that Rachel had a son, and named him Julian (after her sister Juliet).
Desmond meets Penny for the first time.
It is revealed that Juliet was sleeping with Goodwin (long before we discover that he was married to Others' therapist Harper).
The Visual & the Visceral
When Juliet first looks up to exit the sub, the view reminded me of the perspective we get when glancing down into one of the hatches.
To me, it is very clear that Juliet reminds Ben of his mother. There have been some who disagree, but taking the painting in Ben's den into consideration as well as the physical resemblance between Emily Linus and Juliet (and, arguably, Carrie Preston & Elizabeth Mitchell)...I do not see how it can be anyone else.
In addition to needing a fertility doctor on the island, Ben recruited Juliet for his borderline Oedipal complex.
The branding on Juliet's back matches the symbol on the tree above where the medical supply case was hidden.
There is a framed photo on Brother Campbell's desk of himself with none other than Eloise Hawking. Given her role in Desmond's life (both in flashbacks and off island in the future), and that she was with Charles Widmore for a time...it is fascinating to consider whether or not she had anything to do with the fact that Des met Penny Widmore for the first time at that monastery when she was picking up wine for Daddy Widmore.
White Smoke Monster
It has to be significant that Smokey has only appeared in bright flash mode to two people, Juliet and Locke ("I saw a very bright light; it was beautiful.").
IF Smokey is indeed a representation of or security system for the island, it spared both of them on purpose. Yes, Kate was with Juliet when it seemingly photo scanned them, but I truly believe that Juliet was its target during that particular chase.
And yet, Smokey appeared in typical black smoke form when chasing Kate and Juliet toward the sonic fence. To be honest, general consensus is that Smokey was deterred by the sonic fence, and yet I still wonder if it halted and retreated because of Juliet...
I love Kim Dickens, especially because of Deadwood. She just appeared on FlashForward, and certainly deserves her own show at this point.
What I love about Cassidy is the way that she accurately reads and honestly speaks to Kate both in Left Behind and in S5 (Whatever Happened, Happened). Cassidy has only made a handful of appearances on Lost, but serves a very important role as one of the few voices of reason off island.
In Left Behind, Cassidy reveals to Kate that she is pregnant. Here's hoping that she was taking shots of water when she and Kate were bonding at that bar...
Earlier this season, when Locke induced a vision via the sweat lodge and hallucinatory paste, Boone told him to forget Desmond because "he's helping himself." I was reminded of that statement while watching Desmond take Charlie on that hike to rescue who he thought was Penny, in spite of the fact that Charlie was supposed to die on the way according to Des' own future flash.
Even though Desmond acknowledges that his the images in his future flashes are out of order, he should have paid more attention to them. In one of the flashes, Charlie is clearly holding the parachute below Naomi, which would indicate that he's still alive after their hike to get to her.
The following conversations between both Desmond and Brother Campbell and Desmond and Charlie further fuels my Crazy Charlie Theory, given that Charlie ultimately sacrificed his life based solely upon Desmond's vision (Claire and Aaron being rescued):
Desmond: Moriah's the mountain where Abraham was asked to kill Isaac.
Campbell: And yet God spared Isaac.
Desmond: God may not have asked Abraham to sacrifice his son in the first place.
Campbell: It wouldn't have been much of a test, would it? Perhaps you underestimate the value of sacrifice.
Desmond: I keep saving your life, and what good has it done? Maybe it's a test.
Desmond: Like God testing Abraham...except that I failed, because I changed what I saw.
Ben asserted that Jacob himself would cure Juliet's sister's cancer. Is it safe to assume that he actually did? All along, we've assumed that the island has healing powers, but perhaps those powers lie in Jacob alone; we've seen him bring Locke back to life OFF island, and he may have done the same for Juliet's sister.
That Jacob 'allowed' Ben to get a spinal tumor was the first indication that Ben was merely a pawn in his game.
Even though we are to assume that it was Brother Campbell who helped Desmond from his drunken stupor to the monastery (given that he had a rope tied around his waist), it is possible that Jacob was the man who appeared in that garb to guide Desmond down that path.
In S4 we see that Matthew Abaddon hired Naomi to escort the Freighter Four to the island, and Abaddon worked for Charles Widmore.
And yet she had a copy of the infamous Desmond and Penny photo with her when she crashed on the island via parachute. DID Widmore know that Desmond was on the island, or was Naomi also hired by Penny Widmore to find Desmond after discovering her father's mission?
By the way, it seems rather odd that among Naomi's items in her bag on this dangerous mission, there is a Hawaiian hula girl traditionally found on ones dashboard.
It never occurred to me before, but Richard Alpert introduced himself to Rachel (Juliet's sister) using his real name.
When Juliet did not return home after six months, Rachel had to be alarmed and probably filed a report with the police. But Alpert & co. are smart; something tells me that as soon as Juliet left for the island, they coerced and/or blackmailed Rachel not to say a word to anyone.
That Rachel's cancer had returned in the meantime but then was miraculously cured may have been part of it.
I'm sure that this is yet another incident we'll never find out more about, but I've always been curious about exactly what happened in Basra...
Thank you again for stopping by and reading along. We are only mere months away from a new and final season, and I for one am very excited to be revisiting what I consider two of the best episodes of the entire series soon (The Man Behind the Curtain and Through the Looking Glass).
As usual, please leave comments if you'd like to discuss any of the above thoughts or share theories of your own about these three episodes! See you next week.