6.13 The Last Recruit
This week was yet another strong episode of Lost, so it’s no surprise that we’ve got a week’s gap to contend with now. After all, we wouldn’t want to accidentally build up some consistent momentum, would we?
Still, there’s plenty for us to think about while we wait. The sideways-verse appears to be coming together nicely, with multiple characters starting to converge with one another, and yet more relationships being exposed. Perhaps, like on the island, there’s some special significance to the Lost crew being in the same place at the same time?
On the ‘new questions’ front, I think the main one to ask about the sideways-verse is why does Sun recognise Locke? Does her fear indicate that she actually recognises Smoke Locke, rather than the more benevolent John?
Perhaps the gunshot wound she received gave her the near-death glimpse of the other universe that certain other characters have achieved, or maybe it’s related to the Korean bleed-through she experienced. For a change, I don’t think it’ll be long until we find out the answer, if only because there are only four episodes left to watch!
Talking of answers, just as last week gave us a straight up response as to what the whispers are, we finally got the final word on whether Smoke Locke was Christian Shephard or not. And yes, he was. Not much of a revelation, and to be fair, one the majority of the audience was sure to have made already, but you have to admire the way the coyness and doublespeak has been stripped away now that they’re a little pressed for time.
I half expect the final episode to just be the cast members responding to bullet points on Lostpedia. Facetiousness aside, though, this stuff is presumably intended to help any viewers who have come back specifically for the final episodes by telling them a few answers that the faithful have arrived at implicitly (and if that’s the case, then next week, you can expect someone to finally tell us where the polar bear came from.)
Interestingly, this episode was a ‘multi-centric’, spotlighting numerous characters simultaneously. There was a little more focus on Jack, but almost everyone in the sideways-verse got a little screen time.
Multi-centric episodes usually only happen at the start and end of a season, so the format switch here heralds an important moment – perhaps it’s a one-off, perhaps every episode will be multi-centric from now on – but either way, it’s a notional marker point that lets viewers know that this is where the end really starts. We’re definitely in the final stretch now.
Claire finally got a chance to come back to the forefront after hanging around being nothing but a bit mental for several weeks. It’s hard to tell at this point whether she’s actually switched sides, or whether she’s planning to stab everyone in the back, but either way it was nice to see her display a bit of lucidity for a change.
It was interesting, too, how Jack and Claire dealt with their first meeting since discovering their relationship. A muted reaction, but one which would have felt a bit stretched had it been anything more. As it was, it provided a nice bit of balance for a moment that needed to happen, but didn’t need to take up much time.
As it turns out, though, what Claire told Jack might well be true. Early in the episode, she said, and I paraphrase: “You let him speak to you, that means you’ve already chosen to join him”.
And even when faced with a perfect opportunity to leave the island, Jack would rather chance his fortunes with the smoke monster. His choice, after all, had been made. The question is whether that choice can be retracted, because, if not, Claire just got even further away from being the kind of person you want joining your attempt at rebelling.
Desmond, meanwhile, gets his second ‘death’ in two episodes. Although the well was suddenly a lot shorter than last episode implied, this time Sayid brought a gun to finish the job. But, let’s face it, if you don’t see a corpse, nobody died. And even then, if you didn’t see the person being killed there’s plenty of room for error. Apparently Sayid isn’t quite as far gone as Sawyer seems to think, because Desmond quite clearly got through to him.
And finally, the long-overdue reunion of Sun and Jin. It wasn’t quite the emotional moment that the reunions of Rose and Bernard/Penny and Desmond provoked, more a sigh of relief that the plotline is finally over. But even relief is a form of ‘happy’. This scene has, however, made me more convinced than ever that Sun and Jin are safe in the Lost Finale Dead Pool.
The odds for Sawyer’s death, on the other hand, are now way, way up there. He’s on the outs with Smokey and Widmore, and he’s killed people on an island where no bad deed goes unpunished. If you ask me, the chances of a Sawyer spin-off are about as low as they’ve ever been.
And that’s it for this week. Everyone back here in a fortnight!
Check out our review of episode 12 here.