As Lost enters its home stretch, we’re beginning to see glimpses of how it all will end, but we still can’t even begin to accurately predict what will happen next. Last week, Desmond took it upon himself to reach out to all the Losties and share with them the visions of the island that he experienced. Judging from this week’s episode, it seems that Desmond is not going to so much tell them about the visions but is going the “Mr. Destiny” route, setting them up with people on the island that they cared about and letting the visions happen. The first person he reaches out to is Hurley, who in the “flash sideways” is a mega-successful businessman but is unlucky and lonely in love. Hurley’s journey towards awareness of the island begins with a chance meeting with Libby, the girl that Hurley had a brief flirtation with on the island before her untimely death at the hands of Michael. Libby knows who he is, but Hurley has no idea who she is, and his hopes that he has finally found a girl who likes him are seemingly dashed when he finds out that she is in a mental institution. Desmond finds him drowning his sorrows in a bucket o’ chicken and convinces him to find out more about Libby. Hurley visits the mental institution and succeeds in getting Libby to go out with him, and as they kiss during their long-delayed first date, he gets his own vision of the island.
Apparently the Losties’ visions in the “flash sideways reality” are triggered mostly through contact with those that they cared about on the island, and those that have died on the island seem more receptive to it, as their visions are triggered merely by seeing their island loves in the “flash sideways.” This will no doubt make Desmond’s mission quite easy for some Losties but quite difficult for others, as not every one of them had a close relationship with a character who died. Sawyer will no doubt meet up with Juliet in a future episode and get his vision, but will Jack meet up with her too? Perhaps this is not just limited to those who had a romantic interest in the dead character. In this case, a meeting with Boone may trigger Jack’s visions, as the guilt of Boone’s death on the island must still weigh on Jack’s conscience because of his failed attempt to save Boone’s life. This precedent was set last week with Des and Charlie, so perhaps that’s how it will play itself out. All of these questions will no doubt be answered in the final four episodes of the series.
For the first time in a while, the island and “flash sideways” portions of “Everyone Loves Hugo” held equal importance to the overall story, as we are starting to see some overlap because of last week’s events. In this episode, we say goodbye to a minor character (Ilana, we hardly knew you) and to a major landmark on the island (Adios, Black Rock). “Team Jacob” splits up due to a major disagreement in strategy, Desmond is revealed to the “Man in Black,” and Hurley stumbles upon the truth behind those whispers in the jungle that we’ve been hearing since Season One. We also get a glimpse of yet another mysterious bloody boy in the jungle, whom we should learn more of in the inevitable Jacob/MIB uber-flashback. Of course, we get some shocking, unexpected twists at the end of the episode in both realities, both involving Desmond and Locke, which made me believe that Desmond may possibly be aware of what’s going on in both realities simultaneously. At least that’s what I surmised by the final scene of this episode.
There will no doubt be those who will remain disappointed in this final season when everything’s said and done – that’s just inevitable for a season that has garnered such heavy anticipation and speculation. While I still have my theories about what may eventually happen on the show, I have no doubt that the writers will continue to give us what we don’t expect. Frankly, I’m just enjoying the ride and am anxious to see how this unique and remarkable show will wrap itself up, and with only four episodes remaining, we won’t have long to find out. “Everybody Loves Hugo” was a solid, entertaining, and eventful episode and gets 4.5 out of 5 Backpacks Full o’ Dynamite.