I love Lost. So do a lot of other people. For comprehensive coverage, go elsewhere (as I no doubt will). For one important thing to think about each week, read on.
As most of us expected, Lost is "answering questions" (as the ABC trailers want us to believe) by asking more questions. I'm neither surprised nor disappointed. I'm sure the most important questions will have actual answers by the end, and for now, I'm enjoying the ride.
However, though the new questions are fascinating, engaging, and pretty damn cool, they cannot be the most important moments of an episode. The most important moment should either answer a question, or be emotionally or dramatically satisfying in some way. This is the final season, after all. We need answers. Some of the best moments--my favorites--will not answer questions, but the most important moments should.
With that in mind, the most important moment of this week's episode was "Don't tell me what I can't do!"
Obvious, maybe, but it's important for more than just nostalgic reasons. If Locke had a catch phrase, that would be it. It's as inherent to him as anything on the show. I would find it hard to believe that the man in black (or, as he's now being referred to almost universally, Flocke) had the same affinity for that exact same set of words. He repeated them twice in a row, no less, and very deliberately.
If we assume that Flocke had never used that phrase deliberately before (at least not with the exact same inflection and tone that Locke used to say it with), then this moment tells us one extremely important thing: Flocke doesn't just possess Locke's body and some of his memories, able to recall them when he wants to; rather, Locke is in some way inherently part of Flocke.
I find this extremely exciting, because Locke has always been my favorite character, and I am deeply saddened that he's dead (even if he's alive in the sideways world). Somehow, a small part of Locke is living inside Flocke, and Flocke doesn't seem to be able to control it.
Need more proof? Just before Flocke uttered this catch phrase, he hell down. What?! The smoke monster shouldn't be falling down. Tripping over a root? That doesn't seem like him. But it does seem like Locke. Maybe I'm reading into this too much, but it seemed important to me. I don't know what Flocke is, I don't know how he's inhabiting Locke's body (well, not really, but sort of), and I don't know exactly what he wants, but I do know that the old Locke is a part of him--and in more than just appearance.
And since Locke's first flashback episode in season one (when he first said "Don't tell me what I can't do") was the episode that hooked me on the show in the first place, I found the line, and what it means for Locke's character, incredibly exciting.
Disagree? This was a fantastic episode (as all Locke episodes are, in my opinion), and there were a number of other great moments. But none of them were the most important. Here's why:
The obvious leading candidate for most important moment is when Flocke shows Sawyer the names and numbers in the cave. And yes, it's important. But there wasn't much new information, just some cool connections. OK, so some of the main characters (the ones Jacob touched) were already written on the wall (by Jacob) and they have the numbers next to their names, which indicates that Jacob somehow found these people with some equation that relates to the numbers. But this, in my opinion, only raised more questions. (Is the number with each name important? How are they connected? Why were so many other names crossed out? What does it really mean to be a "candidate?" Why was Kate missing?) It will definitely become more important in the future, but right now, I don't think we have enough information to draw meaningful conclusions.
How about when Flocke sees the boy in the jungle, and Richard can't see him, but then later, Sawyer can, and Flocke is surprised that Sawyer can see him. Crazy, right? What does it mean? What do Flocke and Sawyer have in common that they can see the boy but Richard can't? Why was Flocke surprised by this? Who is the boy? Does he work for Jacob? Again, amazing moment. But it only raises new questions.
Maybe you enjoyed when "Search and Destroy" was playing on the record player while Flocke is searching for Sawyer. Very cool? Yes. Another great music selection in this series? Absolutely. Most important moment? Even if it has symbolic meaning, I don't think so.
I was intrigued by the moment when Ben asks Ilana "What's to stop [Flocke] from changing his face?" and Ilana replies, "He can't. Not anymore. He's stuck this way." Very interesting. In fact, I think it reiterates the importance of my choice for most important moment, since Locke is now somehow inherently tied to Flocke in a way that cannot be changed. But taken by itself, it did not answer any questions or provide much insight--at least not yet.
I was surprised to see Ben as a teacher in the flash-sideways. Very interesting, and perhaps symbolic again. Paired with Locke as a substitute teacher, in an episode titled "The Substitute," which in some way seems to refer to both sideways stories, and you've got a pretty interesting sequence of events. It's meaningful semantics, but not the most important moment--not until we truly learn what the word "substitute" means in the context of the island. I also expect that word, "substitute," will become important in connecting the sideways worlds, but that's in the future.
In my opinion, the best moment of the episode was when Flocke takes Sawyer to the scale with a black rock on one side and a white rock on the other, throws the white rock into the ocean, and then calls it an "inside joke." This was by far my favorite moment of the episode, but I don't think it was the most important. No new information, just an amazing bit of symbolism--and a fantastic scene.
The end of each episode always has a great cliffhanger, but was it the most important moment? This week, Flocke asks Sawyer if he's ready to go home, and Sawyer replies, "Hell yes." The key question here is whether or not Sawyer is telling the truth. Based on what he's said in this episode, he is. But based on who he is, he's not. Sawyer is a con man, after all, and he knows how to keep his enemies close. Whether or not he really wants to work with Flocke and go home is a question that will most likely define the first half of this season, if not the entire season. But right now, it's only a question with no answer.
If I missed anything, or if you disagree, comment below!