Television: "Lost" Season Six, Episode Four: "Lighthouse" Review

2/23/2010 Posted by Admin

"Lost" Season Six, Episode Four: "Lighthouse" Review

By our guest blogger, Rob Stammitti

In last week's "The Substitute," we saw the alternate life of our "man of faith" John Locke, as well as the notorious Man in Black disguised as Locke on the island. It's only appropriate that this week we change the pace and follow the self-proclaimed "man of science," Jack Shephard, in this season's first (and the series' probable last) Jack-centric episode, and, thankfully, it was quite a good one.

Spoilers herein.

We left off with Jack and company as he was being told by the Temple Other's leader Dogen that both Sayid and Claire were infected by the sickness that had previously led to the death of Rousseau's team. Obviously, it's no traditional sickness. It's a darkness that slowly seeps in and overcomes everything the person once was. It corrupts them. Jack now has to deal with the fact that not only must he decide whether to kill his friend, but he also has to figure out what to do about his sister.

We also left off in "What Kate Does" with his sister, Claire, and we see that she's pretty beat up and filthy compared to the last time we saw her way back in season four. Now, she's taken Jin to her little tent in the middle of the jungle, and she has Jim (one of the Others that was accompanying him) tied up and prepared for interrogation. Claire seems to believe the Others have her son, Aaron, taken captive at the Temple. We know for a fact that's not true--Kate took Aaron off the island and raised him for three years--but the sickness has driven Claire to near-madness, and she explains to Jin that both her father and her "friend" told her Aaron was at the temple.

Meanwhile, Hurley gets yet another visit from good old Jacob--in ghost form yet again--and Hurley is told that someone is coming to the island and that he and Jack have to go to a lighthouse to help them get there. As we see Jack and Hurley make their way through the jungle, we're reminded a great deal of the first season. Even Hurley says it reminds him of old times. We even revisit the caves they inhabited in that season, where we yet again see the coffin Jack's father mysteriously disappeared from. This moment directly references the scene in the episode "White Rabbit" from season one, where Jack stumbles upon the coffin. Really, this episode mirrors that one quite a bit, even being the same number of episodes into the season.

Speaking of Jack's father, the flash-sideways, as with the last two episodes, basically show us Jack's life were 815 not to crash. In this alternate time, he's a father himself, and he's trying desperately not to be like his own. The story is more poignant and character-driven than anything specifically revelatory about the nature of the flash-sideways or their relation to the other plotline, but the show really made its start with heavy character-based episodes, and it's employed very successfully here. As in "What Kate Does" and "The Substitute," the flash-sideways end on a positive note for the character. I would be pleased to see the characters living much happier lives having not crashed on the island, but there is a real dread to the proceedings as well. Surely, something so great can't last forever, and Alt-Jack is already noticing scars on his body from injuries that happened in the regular timeline.

Overall, what seems to be happening in these early episodes is a slow but urgent preparation for something very big that's going to happen. We've now seen Flocke recruit Sawyer, and if the sickness does in fact have something to do with him, he's recruited Sayid and Claire, as well, and with Jin in tow, he'll have a way into the temple. Meanwhile, Jacob has been doing a little recruiting of his own--Hurley has pretty much been with him from the start, but here Jacob seems to be both bringing someone to the island (as we know he just loves to do) and to be in the process of convincing Jack of his importance to the island, which results in his recruitment as well.

What sort of terror is going to happen here?

Whatever it is, the conflict is developing slowly but surely. Little answers are given here and there, as are hints at where the show is going, but thankfully, this final season isn't just blatantly spouting out everything all the rabid fans want to know and sacrificing character development and suspense in the process. They're taking their sweet time, and it's working splendidly. We're going in wholly new directions but being reminded of the past as well, and the show is accomplishing pretty much exactly what showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse set out to do--bring everything full circle.

It gets more exciting each week to see where they're going to take us next.

Grade: A

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