Sunday, November 1, 2009

LOST Rewatch Week #19: Greatest Hits & Through the Looking Glass

I openly admit to breaking from the original schedule. Because Through the Looking Glass is a 2 hour, 2 episode finale, I made the decision to not move into S4 in this same batch. Next week I will tackle the first four episodes of S4.

Before we begin, I must acknowledge Dom Monaghan for his genuinely moving performance in these last three episodes. His eyes are clearly red in many scenes, and you can tell that it is from the raw emotion of his character's pending departure rather than manufactured for the screen. Every time I re-watch the S3 finale, I am brought to tears and reminded that Charlie's death remains the most poignant and well filmed death scene in television history.

Anagram Alert

Bentham/Locke's funeral home is called Hoffs Drawler, an anagram for Flash Forward.

Crossing Paths

While in England, Charlie saves Nadia from a mugging. Nadia has the distinction of being featured in the flashbacks of three separate characters; Sayid, Locke and now Charlie.

There are no coincidences on Lost, which is why I wonder what relation Gary Nadler (a fellow doctor at Jack's hospital) is to Bernard Nadler. AND, given that it was 2007 and the Oceanic 6 had been revealed at that point, Dr. Nadler probably assumed that Bernard was dead.

Flashing Forward: The Clues

Although I was blown away by the reveal of Jack and Kate off island at the end of S3 the first time around, it is now much easier to spot the clues throughout the finale that they planted for us.  Among others...

  • Jack's phone was clearly a post-2004 model
  • Dr. Hammil said Jack was a hero, TWICE over
  • The anagram of the funeral home
  • The maps and Oceanic tickets scattered on Jack's floor 

Foreshadowing Dialogue

Greatest Hits

Naomi, to Charlie: "You're not really dead, right?"

Desmond: "What I saw, Charlie, was Claire and her baby getting into a helicopter; a helicopter that lifts off, leaves this island."
Charlie: "I thought you were going to tell me that I was going to die again."
Des: "You are."
Charlie: "Wait, what?"
Des: "If you don't, none of it will happen. There won't be any rescue. This time you have to die."

Alex, to Karl, about Ben: "Is he my father?"

Nadia, to Charlie: "You are a hero. Don't let anyone ever tell you differently."

Des: "Maybe I keep seeing you die because I'm supposed to take your place."
Charlie, after knocking him out: "You and I both know you're not supposed to take my place."

Through the Looking Glass

Sawyer, to Kate: "There's always someone to GO BACK for."

Mikhail: "Why would Jacob ask you to lie to your own people?"
Ben: "Because this island is under assault by forces stronger than anything its had to deal with in many, many years. And we are meant to protect it by any means necessary. "

Sawyer: "What the hell did you have us breaking all those rocks for anyway?"
Juliet: "We were building a runway."

Sawyer: "Why are you going back?"
Juliet: "Karma."

Alex: "You locked Karl in a cage. You put him in a room and tried to brainwash him."
Ben: "I didn't want him to get you pregnant."

Ben, to Jack: "Not so long ago, I made a decision that took the lives of over forty people in a single day. History is about to repeat itself right here, right now."

Bonnie, to Charlie: "Beach Boys, Good Vibrations. On the keypad, the numbers - they're notes. It was programmed by a musician."

Bad Beard Jack in 2007, to Dr. Hamill: "Get my father down here. Get him down here right now."

Charlie, after punching in the code in the Looking Glass: "So much for fate."

Naomi: "Charlie just got us rescued."

Ben: "Making that call is THE BEGINNING OF THE END."

Locke, to Jack: "You're not supposed to do this."

Jack, to Kate (in 2007): "We made a mistake. We were not supposed to leave. We have to go back!"

Logistics & Locations

There is a strange connection to Canada on Lost, though I am unable to pinpoint exactly what it is. 

In addition to the fact that Looking Glass team Bonnie and Greta were supposed to be on assignment there, Canada has come into play on Lost in the following ways:
  • Hurley owned a tennis shoe factory somewhere in Canada; it burned down
  • Kate, tail section passenger Nathan, Ethan Rom and Anthony Cooper all claimed to be from Canada at one point
  • Both Ben and Locke used fake Canadian passports
  • Sawyer allegedly had an investor in Ontario, but it may have been a con lie

I can't help but think that Penny's remote listening station in the snowy region may also have been located there...

The Looking Glass

Just before the end of S5 earlier this year, I wrote an article for Doc's site, examining a theory that is relevant to this S3 finale. 

Titled Exploring an Epiphany: Faraday & Charlie, Through the Looking Glass, I encourage you to take a look and let me know what you think, because I stand by my original thought process. 


In the very same episode, both Jack and Locke are very close to committing suicide.

Significant Moments/Firsts

Juliet reveals that there is an underwater Dharma station.

We learn that Charlie's DS ring represents his grandfather Dexter Stratton, after whom Drive Shaft was named.

Jack admits to Kate that he loves her.

Alex meets her mother, Danielle Rousseau, for the very first time.

Jack makes contact and speaks with someone off island, as he calls the freighter with Naomi's phone.

In one of Lost's biggest reveals of all time, we discover that Jack and Kate are living off island. 

A mystery person's death has sent Jack into a rapidly declining spiral.

The Temple of Doom

In the S3 finale, Ben orders Richard Alpert to take the remaining Others to The Temple. We have not seen many of them since, so I have to assume that they have remained there ever since (along with Cindy, Zach and Emma).

So if the 2004 Others were in The Temple when the island skipped in time back to the late 1970's, that would mean that they witnessed a young, wounded Benjamin Linus being brought inside/saved by Alpert...

The Visual & The Visceral

Alex skins a white rabbit to cook for dinner, the exact type of bunny that daddy Ben once had as a pet. 

When Jack is about to attempt suicide on the bridge, it reminded me of George in "It's a Wonderful Life." Then again, at least thematically, it was Ghost Walt who appeared and saved Locke's life as he was contemplating suicide. No one came to Jack's rescue; he caused a car accident in the process. 

In the S3 finale, Jack leads his people on a trek across the island toward potential rescue. In the S5 finale, Locke (NotLocke, really) leads his people on a trek across the island toward answers. 


I found it intriguing that Ben told his people that there had been an accident down in the Looking Glass and that it was flooded, because that had not happened...yet. 


It is very sad and ironic when Charlie's brother Liam tells him the following, given that it actually happens in reverse; Charlie is the one who doesn't make it to thirty, and Liam became the family man:

"You're different. You're going to get married, have a family, a baby. I'll be lucky if I hit thirty."

After re-watching the S3 finale, I was sad to realize that Claire will never receive Charlie's list of Greatest Hits after all...Desmond had it in his shirt pocket when he dove down to the Looking Glass. It is highly unlikely that the list survived the drenching. 

Desmond's Vision

When Sayid tells Jack that "I'm willing to give my life if it means securing rescue, but I'm not giving it up for nothing," it resonated because Charlie basically did so.  Based on Des' vision of Claire and Aaron's rescue alone, Charlie sacrificed his life. 

Given that Claire's current status is unknown and Aaron is off island, I now have to question whether or not Des sacrificed Charlie because he thought it meant reconnecting with Penny. He probably saw a glimpse of her in this vision, he knew that only a musician could figure out the code to unjam the signal, and Charlie was a means to an end. 


That he was the one who saved the day by running over the Others on the beach with the Dharma van...icing on the cake and a fantastic, satisfying follow-up to his journey to restore that van in Tricia Tanaka is Dead.

Juliet & Sawyer

Before the Skaters and/or Jaters jump all over my back, I will reiterate once again that I am not a shipper and I care very little for romantic relationship development on Lost. My rewatch comments are merely personal observations, not statements of fact worthy of debate and uproar. 

There is zero interest or chemistry between Juliet and Sawyer in the S3 finale when she accompanies him back to the beach, but I felt just as I did when I watched it the first time around...I thought they were planting a tiny seed of possibility. I seriously doubt that they had S5 and the time travel relationships planned out at that point, but they certainly cracked open that door for those two just a tiny bit.  At the end of S4, they pushed the door open wider by ending the season with Juliet and Sawyer stuck on the beach together after the freighter blew up and the Oceanic 6 were on their way to rescue. 

Kate & Jack

I still find it awkward and out of place that Jack finally tells Kate that he loves her on their trek up to the radio tower in the S3 finale. He appeared to be more amused than relieved when he said it, and it came across more as a matter of fact than a sincere and long overdue confession of true feelings. It could be that he knew she'd already made her choice after seeing her on camera in the cage with Sawyer, or it could be that he wanted her to know before everything changed when they returned home after rescue. 

Also, and let's be honest...Juliet's brief kiss with Jack before parting way was just as strange and without passion.


Fastest island healing in history? After getting shot in the gut, he not only climbs out of the death ditch following Walt's words of wisdom, he hikes a great distance to find his people, throw a knife in Naomi's back and threaten Jack at gunpoint.  

I look at Jack's reaction to the coffin at the end of S3, and am left to wonder how much time passes between the time Ben kills Locke off island and he is transported back to the island via Ajira 316. Because if you believe that he was merely being preserved until he was delivered back 'home,' that is one hell of a preservation program/method. Of course, dead is presumably Locke is indeed deceased inside that coffin. 


High pitched electronic frequencies. Spear guns. Grenades. The man survives, regardless of the method attempting to kill him. 

He must be ageless and untouchable, like Alpert. I seriously doubt we've seen the last of Patchy.


How is it that at the exact moment when Charlie unjams the island's signal, Penny is at her monitor attempting to make contact? How on earth did she get the frequency/contact data for the island and that Dharma station? And why did she say "what boat?" to Charlie when it becomes clear in S4 that she knew about her father's freighter? She had to have known the basic whereabouts of the freighter, and that it was in striking distance of the island.

In addition, she said "who's Naomi?" So if Abaddon hired Naomi on behalf of Charles Widmore, and Naomi was carrying a photo of Penny and Desmond when she landed on the island...WHO gave it to her and why? If Daddy Widmore knew that Desmond was on the island, he could have tasked Naomi with this separate mission to locate Des. But would he have done so to save/rescue him for Penny, or was Naomi supposed to kill Des for him?


Quite possibly my favorite death on Lost, Sayid's breakdancing feet murder of the Other on the beach reinforces my belief that he is the biggest bad ass on the island, and reminds me why he is my favorite male character of all time on the show. 


Walt appears just as Locke is about to off himself in the Dharma ditch with a gun:

"Get up. You can move your legs. Now get out of the ditch. Because you have work to do."

I got goosebumps while watching that scene again, as I imagined Jacob whispering that very thing to Locke in two of the most important moments of his life; immediately following his 8 story plummet to the ground and his first moment upon crashing on the island. 

Like most others, I used to refer to Walt in this scene as Taller Ghost Walt. But then I remembered that Ms. Klugh asked Michael if Walt had ever appeared somewhere he wasn't supposed to. To me, that is an indication of Walt's special abilities. I believe that the Walt who spoke to Locke in this instance was indeed him rather than a manifestation of either Smokey or Mystery Man/future NotLocke. 

That wraps up three seasons of the Lost Rewatch, at least for my viewing schedule. I appreciate that you've been along for the ride, and hope that you stay with me as we revisit the next two seasons! 

As always, I encourage and enjoy your comments and thoughts about these episodes. You may have noticed that the policy for leaving comments has changed; I apologize for the inconvenience. Please click here for more details.

Have a great week! I will see you soon with analysis of Season 4 and the Freighter Four, starting with The Beginning of the End, Confirmed Dead, The Economist and Eggtown



Ed said...

Great post as usual Jo. Here were some things I noticed too.

"Greatest Hits" - I agree, Desmond's vision of Claire and Aaron getting on the helicopter were off considering it was only Aaron who wound up on it in the end. Maybe that final part of the vision hasn't happened? Or maybe he saw Aaron and assumed Claire would be with him.

"Through the Looking Glass(1)" - I think there is an interesting comparison to Jack attempting suicide with Michael attempting the same thing later in Season 4. Jack chose to not jump because that car wrecked when the driver saw him. Michael was just flat out prevented from dying, no matter how hard he tried. It was destiny. Another free will vs. destiny comparison. I wonder if it's also not a way that Jacob and NotLocke are influencing people. Michael was probably influenced later on by NotLocke from his visions of Jack's Dad on the freighter. Jack was influenced by Jacob with his interaction in the hospital we saw in the Season 5 finale.

"Through the Looking Glass(2)" - I too wondered how is it the Looking Glass station was already set up to call Penelope. Maybe it was set up to call Charles Widmore's office and she happens to be there. Or maybe Charles sets it up in the first place. I'm assuming he's privy to the same future information that his wife Eloise is due to Faraday's journal.

And is Mikhail FINALLY dead or what?

Dustin Winebrenner said...

What was Bad Beard Jack thinking when saying get my dad down here? Was he just drunk and confused? Or, because of Christian's manifestations in the hospital, does he really believe his dad might be there? Still confusing.

I don't think the 2004 Others went time skipping with the Losties. Remember John Locke (just after taking over as leader) flashes away from the Others by himself. Seems like the natives stay put in time, but the visitors go time skipping. Unclear though why Juliet, an Other, went skipping around with the Losties. Guess she was kicked out of the Other club.

B. said...

Another excellent analysis. Thanks again for keeping up with the rewatch.

It was very fun to watch Through The Looking Glass again knowing it was a flash forward. That was a total shock the first time.

Thanks for pointing out that Nadia is the woman Charlie saves in the alley. I missed that.

I thought this rewatch would help me get everything straight for S6, but I gotta say I still don't know how everything we've seen so far relates to each other. Does the moment that Desmond runs into Charlie playing in the street have any relationship to the moment Charlie saves Nadia after playing on the street?

Looking forward to S4!

Anonymous said...

Wow, how could I not notice Jack and Locke were both thisclose to suicide in the same episode? The writers like to say Jack and Sawyer are similar but on screen Jack and Locke are way more alike, this only proving even more so. When neither have a set "mission" in mind, they lose all hope in everything. I can't wait til these two reunite next season, BadLocke or not!

I remember reading somewhere Elizabeth Mitchell saying Sawyer/Juliet was decided on in the season four finale with them at the beach shore. I tend to think they were both suicidal as well in their scene here, why else would they both go on such a dangerous mission?

DMNM said...

I got the suspicion that the Bonnie & Greta's assignment in Canada was in fact to retrieve Anthony Cooper to Island

LisaC said...

Hey Jo,
Thanks so much for keeping up with the re-watch! I just got my season 4 dvds and I am ready to catch up with you!
There are so many un-answered questions... why did Jack say get my father down here, how and why did Naomi have the picture of Desmond and Penny, what is going to happen with them, especially with the actress on another (great) show... and of course how are they going to resolve this show in one short season! I don't want it to end.
Thanks for keeping it going for us just a bit longer.