“Welcome to the island. For your own comfort and safety, we ask that you stay within the confines of your new living quarters. Our barracks are surrounded by a high-frequency sonar fence to protect us from the island’s abundant and diverse wildlife. You’re now a member of the DHARMA Initiative.“
Previously, on LOST…
Season 05, Episode 08
In arguably the best episode thus far of Season 5, the time-jumpers finally settle down in 1974, but not before first getting a glimpse of that four-toed statue in all its former glory. Charlotte’s lifeless body, however, did not make the jump with them, which breaks Faraday’s nerd heart. The remaining Losties, Saywer, Juliet, Jin, Miles, and Faraday stumble upon a Dharma/Others confrontation, and thanks to the shootin’ of rootin’-tootin’ Sawyer and Calamity Juliet, they are able to rescue Dharma member (and new widow) Amy from the murderous Others. Amy, distrusting of her saviors, fools them into passing through the sonic fences, dropping them all like sacks of fish biscuits. Sawyer comes to, and is confronted by Dharma member Horace, previously seen assisting in the birth of Benjamin Linus, later seen in Locke’s fever dreams. Sawyer goes old-school, spinning a yarn to explain he and his crew’s presence in their community, dubbing himself “LaFleur”. Horace doesn’t cotton to the new guy, and books him and his buds one-way tickets back to the mainland on the next sub offa this rock.
However, Sawyer has a legit “Uh-Oh,” moment later that night when Lazarus himself, Richard Alpert, leader of the Hostiles/Others, comes looking for answers in regards to his two missing compatriots. ‘LaFleur’ takes a crack at calming matters, by discreetly confessing to Richard that it was he who killed his men, but also imparts on him his knowledge of “Jughead” and Alpert’s interactions with John Locke. Alpert takes his leave, and Horace, surprised by LaFleur’s way with diplomacy, allows him and the other Time Bandits to remain with Dharma.
Three years later, ‘LaFleur’ has risen to head of Dharma security, with Jin and Miles as his underlings. Juliet has given up the scalpel in favor of a torque wrench and coveralls, which she slips out of every night before climbing into bed with Sawyer/Lafleur. Sawyer is ousted from his sexy-time slumber with Juliet by a security breach, which ends up being a drunken Horace playing with explosives down by the sonic fence. Sawyer wrangles the lush, and brings him home to his pregnant wife, Amy. She goes into labor two weeks early, assisted by a reluctant Juliet, and the birth is a success. Horace awakens from his booze-induced coma, to find ‘LaFleur’ watching over him. Sawyer informs him of his new baby, and Horace spills the beans on the reasons behind his drunken rampage the night prior. Apparently, Horace still believes that Amy still loves her former husband, and questions whether 3 years is truly long enough to get over someone. Sawyer ensures him that it is, and the next morning, he gets to test out that theory, as Jack, Hurley, and Sawyer’s ex-fling Kate return to the island. DRAMA!
‘LaFleur‘ is the best episode yet of Season 5, and possibly one of the greatest episodes thus far in the series (‘Tricia Tanaka is Dead‘ holding firm as my favorite of the series). The progression of the story and the explanation behind the time-jumpers’ whereabouts the past 3 years all take a backseat to the character drama taking place between Sawyer and Juliet. These two characters so obviously pine for another (Kate and Jack, respectively), but they are somehow able to move on and build a life and love together. This all turns to shit when their former flames show up on the island’s sandy shores.
Season 05, Episode 09
The episode opens inside the cabin of Ajira Airways Flight 316 just before the flash that disappeared Hurley, Jack, and Kate into thin air. Hurley clutches a black guitar case, could this be in reference to Charlie, somehow? Was it a matter of making Flight 316 as “similar” to Ocean 815 as possible? Or could the guitar case hold clues as to how Hurley was convinced to get on the plane in the first place? The flash occurs, causing the plane’s instruments to fail. Frank Lapidus muscles the plummeting aircraft onto a make-shift runway. The landing is smooth, but the stopping, not so much, as a tree limb impales Frank’s co-pilot like an hors d’oeuvres.
30 Years earlier, Sawyer and Jim reunite with Jack, Kate, and Hurley. Hurley, the king of keeping things light on ‘Lost‘, comments to Jin, “Dude, your English is awesome.” Rosetta-Stone aside, Sawyer has to think quick in order to bring his friends back to the Dharma barracks without too many questions, while Jin rushes to find the location of the plane and his wife, Sun.
Frank rallies the survivors of Flight 316 (which include Sun and Ben), but is undermined by newbie Cesar (Saïd Taghmaoui). Ben slinks off, and Sun follows closely behind. They confront one another, and Ben communicates to Sun that they are on the “other” island, and he leads her to a stash of outriggers that they can utilize in getting back to what he refers to as “our island”. Frank catches up to the two, and urges Sun to not trust slimy ol’ Ben. Before Ben can finish his equally condescending and devious statement, Sun takes an oar to the back of his head (which would explain Ben’s residence in the infirmary in “The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham”).
Here’s the plan to assimilate the returning Losties into The Dharma Initiative: a sub full of doped up new recruits is on its way from the mainland, and with a little manipulation of the manifests, Jack, Kate, and Hurley will be three of the newest members of Dharma. Juliet visits Amy to acquire said manifest and give the new mother the day off with her new son, Ethan (CREEPY BABY!). Jin arrives at the Flame to find out any information of the location of Sun’s plane, and is rebuffed by resident weirdo Radzinsky. As he waits for info on the plane, the two watch The Muppet Show, until the alarm sounds that a Hostile has crossed the borders. The two rush out, rifles in hand, to find a hand-cuffed Sayid running through the wilderness. Jin draws down on Sayid, reluctantly, uttering in newly perfect English, “Say another word, and you’re dead.”
The three new “recruits” attend Dharma orientation, and receive their uniforms/jobs. Kate is almost revealed as a fake, before Juliet presents the “updated” manifest. The two ladies exchange passive-aggressive smirks, which only foreshadow the Jerry Springer-style “That’s my man” confrontation the two will surely have over Sawyer, Jack, or both. I think the two should settle things woman to woman; whomever can make the other orgasm first, wins. Wait a second…this isn’t my Lost fan-fic…
Sun and Frank arrive at the Dharma barracks, which have clearly been abandoned some time ago. They hear the “Jacob” voices, and the trees thrash Smoke-Monster-style. A light turns on in one of the Dharma condos, and Christian Shepard, looking like a cholo with his top-button buttoned, exits. He informs Sun and Frank that their friends haven’t been there for some time, and shows the two the framed photo of Dharma, Class of ’77.
Hurley pulls on his Dharma ‘Chef’ coveralls, a line of work that promises all the Dharma Brand Ranch Compound he can eat. Sawyer arrives at The Flame to transport ‘Hostile’ Sayid to Dharma Jail. Later, Jack comes-a-knockin’ on ‘LaFleur’s’ door, only to be greeted by doe-eyed Juliet. Jack thinks he made a mistake, but Juliet assures him he did not, and leads him into the living room of the love nest she shares with Sawyer. Juliet allows the two to speak, and Jack asks Sawyer to bring him up to speed. Sawyer does so, but assures Jack that he’s got everything under control, and Jack no longer has to be “that guy”, which takes a weight off the shoulders of “the reluctant leader”. In the climax of the episode, Sayid, in his cage, is brought a bag lunch by a young Dharma kid, who introduces himself, unsurprisingly, as Ben. How long before this little creep wipes out the Initiative?
Another solid episode from the Lost crew. They seem to be answering a lot of questions, while creating new ones, which has been Lost‘s M.O. since the beginning. The Love-Quadrangle and Jin and Sun’s search for one another will prove to be the best sub-plots of this season and possibly the next.
Until next Thursday…
“On behalf of the De Groots, Alvar Hanso, and all of us at the DHARMA Initiative, thank you. Namaste. And… good luck.“