LOST The Package

I began this episode feeling just a little like Sayid: nothing, no anger, no sorrow, losing emotional attachment to this show that I and so many of you have followed for years. Just a handful of episodes before it all ends – could there be anything else I could learn about the characters? Any more stories to tell, that would be as enjoyable as what we’ve already seen, much less that can bring what we’ve watched for a number of years to a satisfying conclusion? Can seven (and now six) episodes explain enough to tie key threads together? Will we find out who or what was in the cabin? Surely it wasn’t Jacob, since he lives in the statue, and surely it wasn’t the smoke monster, who was kept away by the ash circle. Will we find out how Ben could summon the smoke monster and knew he needed to be judged by it, when the Others now seem to regard it as a dangerous enemy?

This episode helped to mitigate my sense that LOST might, in spite of having a set number of seasons to tell the story, nevertheless manage to end in a manner not entirely unlike a train wreck. There is little time left to bring the story to a conclusion, and I’m not looking for every question to be answered, but I do hope that we will not be left with lots of glaring contradictions. A novelist has the chance to revise earlier parts of the book once she or he has told the whole story. With a TV show, where episodes are aired sequentially, the possibility to go back and revise is not there. And so, if the writers and producers of LOST are able to bring such a complex story to a coherent end, it will be a work of genius, proof that Locke was right – the island is a place where miracles happen.

Let’s see what we learned [SPOILERS FOLLOW]. Perhaps the most important thing we learned is that Desmond is the “package” that was kept in the locked room on the submarine. Apparently he is the best hope for preventing the smoke monster from getting off the island. But why?

We also had a hint that the key to the smoke monster getting off the island is for him to take the last living candidates with him.

The pockets of electromagnetic energy around the island also seem to be important somehow: Zoe is a geophysicist.

We were also reminded about Room 23, where the Dharma Initiative conducted experiments with subliminal messages (and where we once saw the words “God Loves You As He Loved Jacob” flash across the screen, while a backwards message told us that “Only fools are enslaved by time and space.” Presumably their reminding us about this, like their reminding us about Adam and Eve and about Christian Shepard’s missing body, is significant.

Seeing an encounter across the sonic fence barrier between “John Locke” and Charles Widmore was impressive. If it is true that Widmore knows more than he has said about the smoke monster, how did he know what his role was supposed to be in all this, after being away from the island for so long? What is his mission, and what is the background to it?

What do you think it all means? I feel like by now we ought to be able to speculate intelligently about what remains to happen between now and the final episode, and it is the sense that so much is still uncertain that leaves me feeling somewhat apprehensive.

What about you? Are you like Sayid when it comes to LOST?

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  • http://diglot.wordpress.com diglot

    I am somewhat skeptic that they will be able to answer all the important (and semi-important) questions/mysteries before the series finishes (especially without raising more questions/contradictions).If they do though, it will once again prove why this show is the greatest show ever created.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00785300578472667155 Dain Miller

    I feel somewhat the same as you. I actually have gotten less interested in this show, since this most recent season.I think what you said about the info as of lately is very acurate, and there are a lot of things I could say – but I will suffice it to say this:I honestly think it will end like a horse slowly sinking in a pool with no means to a way of escape. Absolutely out of its element and ready for disaster. I am so curious if they can twist our minds enough to not sink, and I suppose we will see soon enough.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12399706958844399216 terri

    You would think that JJ Abrams would have learned from the Alias, fiasco, in which he and the writers ruined an incredibly awesome show by trying to have too much going on…developing a myhtology, abandoning mythology, bringing it back later, ignoring earlier parts of the mythology, having characters that were pure evil, then good, then evil agin, and then maybe good again(Sloane/Sydney's mother).This mess of tangled and loose threads has JJ Abrams fingerprints all over it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14247799389009268470 James Pate

    I felt like Sayid because there wasn't the recap of last week's episode to juice me up!

  • http://mattdabbs.wordpress.com mattdabbs

    Great thoughts…could it be that the smoke monster was in the cabin and the ash was there to keep him in? Claire broke the ash to let him out, possibly.Why didn't "Locke" just topple those sonic barriers by picking up one of the spindly legs and tossing it over and then destroy them all? :)Hume did seem to know something about the electromagnetism as he had been typing in the code for years. Maybe you are right and that has something to do with keeping smokey on the island. That would make sense why they pulled Jin to help them know where the pockets of electromagnetism existed on the island due to his past work with the Dharma initiative.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    I don't think smokey could have been trapped in the cabin, given that he's been roaming around the jungle since the start of season one.

  • skinman

    I agree that it is unlikely that Lost will have a truly satisfying ending, but not because of all the loose ends. I think that this season has been exceptional. It has been some of the best televison programming I've ever seen. The down side is that it has set a bar for the finale that is likely unobtainable. But I can't wait for next week's episode and I can't wait for The End. And if it is anti-climatic that's okay. Because it has been a great ride.And to be honset, there was one moment last night that made me wish that Lost wasn't about to end (even though I know it is for the best). That scene with Jack and Sun on the beach, with her scribbling notes to communicate, made me realize how much I will miss these characters and this show once it is gone. So no, Lost doesn't have me feeling like Sayid. I'm eager to see the last 6 episodes and I will be bummed when it is over.

  • http://mikew1584.wordpress.com mikew1584

    When you keep a mystery going so long the answer is often disappointing when compared to our wildest imaginings. We really want to be totally blown away. For all those who read Marvel comics, remember the fan dance with Wolverine's origins? They did all kinds of stuff to keep the mystery going, and when they finally revealed it it was like well, OK. In Lost I think they may have stretched the suspense to far. On the other hand is Terry O'Quinn the best Devil or what? He brings the same blend of menace and sweetness that he brought to his character from the old slasher flick, "Stepfather". I always liked Locke and Smokey Locke has the same aura of benevolent wisdom. He always seems to be on the side of the people he's manipulating.

  • C. Hays

    I'm not a t.v. junkie by any means. I've always had "favorite" shows, but if I missed them once or twice, no worries. :) But with the advent of the DVR, we have taken to recording them, then watching at our leisure (sometimes we never do watch them!) But with "Lost", it's always been an obsession nearly – from the first couple of episodes, my family and I have been hooked. Yes, we DVR it, but we never wait more than 15 mins. in to start watching, and that's only so we can zap a few times through commercials (until we catch up to "live tv"). We eagerly anticipate it. We love the characters – cry for them, laugh with them, worry about them. I know it sounds stupid, because we do have busy, meaningful lives, but we just can't stop the "addiction". But as for being sad, I can't say we are. The very worst thing that could happen would be for it to get old or stale. It's felt like that sometimes for an episode or two,at times, and I just don't want to feel disappointed with "Lost". I think it's something that has gone as far as it can go, and I will be pleasantly surprised if the finale can leave us breathless. I'm hoping it will be amazing, and I'm dreading it in a way, but it's time has come. To ease our pain a bit, we've started from the beginning, watching it all again, to refresh our memories before the finale. But, sadly, I think the time has come for "Lost" to leave while it's on top. Let's all hope that the writers can do it justice in those last two hours. cjh

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14247799389009268470 James Pate

    Roger Ebert said that Terry O'Quinn's performance was the only redeeming thing about Stepfather!