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Category: Lost

'Lost': How to get your midsummer fix

June 16, 2009 |  4:11 pm

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"Lost's" fifth season finale was just over a month ago and the sixth season doesn't begin for six long months. But just because ABC isn't airing original episodes until 2010 doesn't mean we have to go entirely "Lost"-less. There are a few options this summer to help fill the gaping void in all our lives.

--The second episode of Bravo's "Top Chef Masters," airing Wednesday, features Damon Lindelof, Carlton Cuse and the writing staff as the guest diners. The chefs will prepare the fresh protein (including what appears to be a boar's head) only from a list of Dharma-approved canned and preserved ingredients. Here's hoping they find a use for that oh-so good Dharma peanut butter.

--Evangeline Lilly will appear in Kathryn Bigelow's much-buzzed about Iraq war drama "The Hurt Locker," which opens in limited release June 26. The film follows the exploits of a U.S. Army bomb squad in Iraq.
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'Lost': Alpert says what?

May 14, 2009 |  5:15 pm

AlpertRich1 Once again, "Lost" managed to pull out an incredible season finale that simultaneously raised as many questions as it answered. Though, I think in a first for the series, we actually got more answers than questions.

But before we get to the whole Jacob/Esau rivalry, let's clear up one of the real head-scratchers of the episode, the answer to "What lies in the shadow of the statue is?" Richard (or Ricardo, as we can now call him) answers in Latin, of course! The answer is "Ille qui nos omnes servabit," or roughly translated, "He who will protect/save us all."

So, it appears the Others and the Ajira Airlines folk weren't kidding when they said they were the good guys. A quick trip to the Bible, (OK, OK, Wikipedia's version of the Bible), tells us that Jacob and Esau were fraternal twins who spent the majority of their lives in a fierce rivalry. When Esau finally got the upper hand and killed Jacob, Jacob's children rose up and overpowered Esau and his followers.

Judging by what we saw in the season finale, with Ben stabbing Jacob at Locke/Esau's request, the first part of the Bible story has come to pass. Now it just leaves us with the rising up of Jacob's children (the Others) and the overthrow of Esau. So there you go, "Lost," fans. That's how the series is gonna end! Sorry for the spoilers!

But I somehow doubt Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof will make it that easy for us. Despite all the talk of destiny and inevitability, nothing, and I mean nothing, has been straightforward on this series. Just look at how they handled the climactic nuclear explosion. When it failed to go off for Jack, I was truly fooled into thinking that it wouldn't detonate at all. Joke's on me.

But what I think this season finale did more than anything was to finally give us a stable frame with which to watch the entire series. So much we've seen before makes perfect sense. Remember the dream where we saw Locke with the black eye and the white eye? His talk with Walt about there always being two sides. The mysterious behavior of Christian Shepherd, the resurrected Locke and the smoke monster. Poor Ben, he was fooled the whole time into thinking he was working on the side of the angels. Poor, pitiful Ben. No matter what else happens next season, I think we'll finally see Ben redeem himself in sacrifice. His tortured confrontation with Jacob revealed that his manipulations have only been a ruse to cover up his sense of lonliness and wanting to belong. I predict Season 6 will give us Good Ben (though don't expect it right away).

Meanwhile, they continued to explain minor bits of the story. Pierre Chang's missing hand in the Dharma Initiation film? Explained (he lost it after having it crushed by the electromagnetic forces on the island).

The white/black, good/evil motif? Finally crystallized in the bodies of Jacob and Esau. The reason Hurley managed to find his way onto Ajira air? Jacob's urging, of course.

Though as Jacob pointed out several times in the finale, it was left up to individual choice. No trickery on the side of the angels. That, apparently, has been the provinence of Esau, who it appears has been the main manipulator of the island's events all along.

We're now down to 17 hours of "Lost" left. What once seemed an impossibly sprawling mess of unexplained happenings is rapidly coming down to a final and primal clash between good or evil.

How long until 2010 again?

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: ABC

'Lost' co-creator Damon Lindelof explains The Numbers

May 7, 2009 |  7:03 pm

09-1 For five seasons, they've haunted Hurley, they've haunted us:  4 8 15 16 23  and 42.

What do they mean? Do they mean anything? Are we wasting our time caring?

Damon Lindelof, the ABC series' co-creator, attended a Comics on Comics event at Meltdown Wednesday night and explained the numbers as well as some other interesting tidbits about the future of "Lost."


E! Online attended the event and posted the Q&A, which you can find here.

As far as those menacing digits, this is what Lindelof said:

"The Hanso Foundation that started the Dharma Initiative hired this guy Valenzetti to basically work on this equation to determine what was the probability of the world ending in the wake of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Valenzetti basically deduced that it was 100 percent within the next 27 years, so the Hanso Foundation started the Dharma Initiative in an effort to try to change the variables in the equation so that mankind wouldn't wipe it itself out."

This information, in more convoluted form, was leaked out via the online games rather than explained on the show itself, Lindelof said, because "That would be the worst thing ever. We have to make the show for the hard-core fans who care about the numbers, but we also have to make it for my mom, who just wants Sawyer to take his shirt off."

-- Maria Elena Fernandez

Photo: Jorge Garcia as Hurley/ABC

'Lost': It hasn't all been miserable

May 7, 2009 |  2:27 pm

01 The nice thing about time-travel story lines is you get to reuse footage. Just ask Robert Zemeckis. The second half of "Back to the Future Part II" is Marty McFly crawling through "Back to the Future."

This time it was John Locke running across himself from the past in the future. It was cool to watch Locke prep Richard to talk to … well … Locke, but it also supports a theory I’ve been worried about most of this season: What if Locke set himself up?

OK, stay with me here. How does Locke know he is supposed to be the leader of the Others? Richard told him. But how did Richard know Locke was coming and would be their leader? Locke told him. Back in the '50s. Which, for Richard, was the first time meeting Locke. How did Locke know that he needed to bring the Oceanic 6 back and die in the process? Richard told him. But how did Richard know? We saw tonight that Locke also told Richard that. Just before Richard came out of the woods and told Past Locke what he needed to do, Future Locke fed him his lines. Time travel, right? Isn’t it fun?

So what if Locke dying and the Oceanic 6 returning weren’t the plan of destiny/the island/Jacob/etc.? Tonight raised the question of whether it was actually all cooked up in that shiny, shaved noggin. John Locke has always felt that his life was meant for something greater. "Walkabout," "Orientation," "Lockdown," "Further Instructions," "The Man From Tallahassee," "The Brig," "Cabin Fever." They’re all about Locke thinking he (or his father) is something greater than he is. And how did every one of those turn out for Locke? At least he’s consistent.

But "Follow the Leader" did give the one piece of evidence that this theory can’t be the case. Locke coming back from the dead? No. The compass. Where did it come from? Richard has had it since the 1950s when he got it from John Locke, who got it from Richard in 2007 right before he traveled back in time. That’s a continual loop, but the compass couldn’t have just spontaneously come into existence. It had to come from somewhere. And if it did just continually go back in time and then exist for 50-some-odd years, wouldn’t it continue to age? It had to come from somewhere. That’s why Locke can’t be his own grandfather. Wait. What was I explaining again?

If all those Lockes weren’t enough for you, there’s another person acting very Locke-ish back in 1977. Jack picks up right where Faraday falls dead with the plot to change the past/present/future all at once. Jack, once he figures out how to get a 12-foot, 40,000-pound hydrogen bomb out of the basement, plans to follow through on Corpsey McDirtnap’s intention to detonate it at the Swan station and pressing the reset button on everything that has happened and basically erasing all the past-season DVDs I bought. That’s how it’s going to be, you know. If Jack succeeds, then all old episodes of "Lost" will change and become about an airplane landing and everyone inside going on with their normal lives. It’s a fact.

No one else seems to be going along for Jack’s ride. Hurley, Miles and Jin are heading to the hills with all the food Hurley can grab. Though first they stop to confess to Dr. Chang about being from the future after they couldn’t come up with the president in 1977. It’s Carter, right? Damn, where’s Wikipedia when you need it?

Sawyer and Juliet buy their subway fare to the mainland with a hand-drawn map (can you use those on Priceline?). I couldn’t help but wonder if this crude doodle by lefty LaFleur becomes the basis for Radzinsky’s blast door map. Radzinsky’s gonna end up spending a lot of time in the Swan station pushing a button, and the more they show of him, the better I feel about that. He was a paranoid lunatic this week. Jeez.

Not even Kate is willing to go blow some stuff up with Jack. “Since when did shooting kids and blowing up hydrogen bombs become OK?” Since always! Come on, Kate. Where’s your spirit of adventure? Where’s that girl who went racing out into the jungle with Flight 815’s transmitter even though she saw the pilot ripped apart by the Smoke Monster? I know blowing up hydrogen bombs and shooting kids are far removed from where they were five seasons ago, but you gotta constantly be taking it to the next level. Eventually, you’ll be jumping out of an airplane in just shorts.

The only person who would follow Jack anymore is Sayid. Though Sayid does admit that be it changing history or killing themselves he’s good either way. Makes sense that after three years plus of all this craziness, one of the survivors of Flight 815 is just ready to call it quits. Sayid is half hoping to ride this bomb like Slim Pickens in "Dr. Strangelove." Though he couldn’t go quietly. He had to question why Jack trusts Eloise, and Jack explains that in 30 years she helps them get back to the island, which starts a whole new time loop I don’t want to get into.

So we’re heading into the season finale. Everybody’s traveling. Locke, Sun, Ben, Richard and a group of Others are heading to Jacob, so Locke can kill him (though part of me thinks Jacob doesn’t exist). Sawyer, Juliet and Kate are traveling back to the real world (looking at the preview for next week, I guess they don’t make it). And Jack, Sayid, Eloise and Richard are traveling to Home Depot, I expect, shopping for tools to build a pulley system of some sort. How are they gonna move big old Jughead?

The real question is: Where are Rose, Bernard and Vincent? Come on. I’ll gladly give up any airtime used to show the Sawyer/Juliet/Kate love triangle to know where they are.

Hopefully, next week.

-- Andrew Hanson

Photo: ABC Studios

'Lost': No turning back now

April 30, 2009 |  2:49 pm

09 “For the first time in a long time, I don’t know what’s going to happen next.”


That’s what Eloise Hawking told Penny in the waiting room. Of course, they are there because Desmond is being treated for a gunshot wound bad enough to endanger his life but only after he had the energy to beat the tar out of Ben. I’m sure a lot of characters on "Lost"  would have that last bit of adrenaline saved up to retaliate against Ben if he shot them. Everyone has to kind of expect it by this point.

Eloise confesses her uncertainty about the future, which is a big deal because she’s one of the characters who knows everything. She first appeared giving Desmond cryptic messages about the future. She’s the one who showed the Oceanic 6 how to get back to the island. She’s an old-school  Other. Though we found out in "The Variable" that Eloise had what could best be described as a MAJOR SPOILER. She knew way in advance who was gonna die in the 100th episode of "Lost."

Last week, Faraday returned to the island after studying abroad. In Ann Arbor too. Must be tough to leave that wonderful Michigan weather for a Pacific island. But Faraday’s back with a purpose. He has to get there in time to appear in the first scene of the season. Back when Dr. Chang came down to the digging under the Orchid station and first proposed time travel. How absurd!

As soon as Faraday fulfilled his part of that bit of history, he did something that no other "Lost" character seems capable of doing: talking about what’s happening. He spills his guts to Dr. Chang. Telling how he’s from the future, Miles is his kid and he needs to get everyone off the island ASAP. Faraday’s honesty is almost jarring, but don’t worry, it doesn’t last long. When Miles finally gets to ask what’s going to happen next, Faraday tells him, “You’ll see,” and  clams up.

In “The Constant,” Faraday saved Desmond by helping him find the one thing that is stable throughout time. Now in the “The Variable,” Faraday tries to prove that history can be changed only to play out his own destiny. The flashbacks showed how Eloise constantly pushed her son to prepare him. No time for piano, gotta study. No time to hook up with your lab assistant, gotta experiment. No time to sit around with giant holes in your memory, gotta go to the Island. Eloise kept pointing Faraday at his future, which unfortunately is getting shot by her in the past.

We did get confirmation on a lot of speculation. Faraday is the child of Eloise and Widmore. The Incident is the result of digging to build the Swan station. Widmore paid to fake the crash of Oceanic 815. But overall “The Variable” is what my friend Desiree calls a vehicle episode. Basically it’s just getting all the characters into position for the season finale. Season 4 has “Something Nice Back Home.” Season 3 was “Greatest Hits.” Way back in Season 1, it was “Born to Run.” This season, it’s far more important. The characters aren’t getting into position for just the season finale but also the final season.

At the end of “The Variable,” Eloise walks out of the Long Beach Hospital. She has placed the Oceanic 6 on their flight back to the Island. That’s her last responsibility. The final act toward sending her son to his death at her own hand. She shows she can't change the past even if he thought he could. It must have been tough to raise a child for the sole purpose of dying like that.

But just as Eloise put in motion the end of her child, the powers that be behind "Lost" are putting in motion the end of their creation. Faraday said the Incident happens in about four hours. That’s just enough to fill out the rest of the season. By then, will all the 815 survivors be back in the present time, preparing to do battle against (or with) the people who know what lies in the shadow of the statue?  Can Sawyer escape from Radzinsky, stick him in the Swan pushing buttons, and deal with Juliet getting all moody over him calling Kate Freckles? Will Jack ever get back to his Man of Science determination? And is there any significance to the issue of Wired with the headline “The Impossible Gets Real”? Only time will tell.

-- Andrew Hanson

Photo: Jeremy Davies as Daniel Faraday on "Lost." Credit: ABC

ABC hopes you saw what it wanted you to see during 'Lost' (updated)

April 30, 2009 |  5:16 am

What did you see during the "Lost" commercial breaks tonight?

Five Easter eggs? Yes. But not from "Lost" executive producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse. These were tiny images inside a black screen followed by the words -- "What did you see?" -- which lead us -- ABC hopes -- on another interactive adventure.

The clips are the beginning of a promotional campaign for an ABC drama pilot, "Flash Forward," that has not been officially picked up as a series for fall, but it can be assumed that it's highly likely it will be part of the fall ABC lineup that will be announced on May 19 in New York.

The ads, first reported in "The Hollywood Reporter" last week, and their companion website, TheMosaicCollective.com, didn't reveal much about the show. The first was of pallbearers carrying a coffin. The others were a bride and groom kissing, a surfer, a fetal sonogram and a group of kids leaving school.

The question each spot poses is a central theme of the series and one that ABC's marketers are running with as they attempt to position this series as its replacement for "Lost" once the show goes off the air next season.

In an interview last month, Suzanne Patmore-Gibbs, ABC's executive vice president of drama development, described the drama, which is based on Robert J. Sawyer's novel of the same name, as follows:

"You’re following a bunch of individuals in the first two minutes. Our FBI agent, played by Joseph Fiennes, appears to be in an FBI chase. You think he has a car crash. He has a flash of all sorts of things and he wakes up on the freeway and subsequently discovers that everybody else in the world has had a blackout that lasted the same amount of time. This resulted in a lot of devastation across the world. Everybody talks about their flash and they realize they were all dreaming of the same day -- which is a day in the future. You can identify with the different people and have that sense of global import -- we’re all in it together -- like 'Lost.'"

In addition to Fiennes, Sonya Walger ("Lost" and "Tell Me You Love Me"), Christine Woods, Courtney B. Vance and John Cho are part of the cast.

According to Zap2It.com, those investigating the event will have only "a huge mosaic of people's flash forwards" to go on, which is where the name of the website comes from. So far, the only message on the website, after users answer a question, is "The Mosaic Collective is dedicated to connecting the world one experience at a time."

-- Maria Elena Fernandez

UPDATE: For those who missed the ABC spots, this post has been updated with links to each of them.

'Lost': The circle of trust

April 16, 2009 |  7:24 am

Hoth0031 On Wednesday night's episode of "Lost," given the geeky yet cool title, "Some Like It Hoth," Miles Straum, a greatly under-utilized character so far in the series, was brought into the Dharma Initiative's "circle of trust" and finally given a chance to shine.

What we learned, not surprisingly, is that like every other major character on "Lost," he's got some big daddy issues. In this case, he's been haunted by the belief that his dad kicked him and his mother out of his life when he was still an infant. What Miles learned in this episode was that his dad, Pierre Chang of the Dharma instructional videos, appeared to love him very, very much. So what caused him to cast his wife and child out of his life? We don't know for sure, but I'm willing to bet that it's something Miles and his time-traveling buddies do and that Pierre's decision was for Baby Miles'  safety.

Meanwhile, Miles was brought into Horace, Radzinsky and Chang's "circle of trust" by having to deliver a dead body to Chang at the construction site of the Orchid Station. It seems the island's electromagnetic properties contributed to the poor sap's death by causing his tooth filling to shoot out through his brain, but Horace and company seemed very intent on keeping anything about it a big secret. And while the threat to life and limb the Dharmas pose to our Oceanic heroes still seems very real, the more we see of the (mostly) men and women of the Dharma Initiative, the sillier their whole group appears. Almost like the people at the top of the chain are just playing the part of tough guy adventurer/scientists while in reality having no real idea what they're doing or what they're dealing with. They're in way over their heads, and the mysterious, spooky organization we all speculated about so much in the second season is rapidly turning into a bit of a joke. That's not a knock on the show or its writing or acting. I think this was the intention all along. This trip back in time is rapidly demystifying the past while demonstrating humanity's tendency toward hubris. With someone like Richard Alpert in your backyard, you shouldn't go around acting too cocky.

And did anyone catch the lesson Jack was erasing from the blackboard in Othertown's schoolhouse? It looked like the Dharma's kids were studying ancient Egypt. Yet another pointer to the true nature of the island and it's Hostile inhabitants. (The hieroglyphics on the left of the board seem to translate to "Writing of the words of God.")

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One 'Lost' mystery down, 1 million to go

April 10, 2009 |  5:34 pm

Getprev It's not every day that we get to solve a "Lost" mystery, but today we most certainly can.

The Internet's been buzzing since yesterday with the "Lost" news that Matthew Perry -- also known as Chandler Bing -- is appearing in the season finale of "Lost." A sleuth found the secret casting news on IMDB, with a character name and everything.

ABC immediately denied this, but we are of a suspicious nature, so we kept digging. What we found is that nowhere on the island of Smoke Monsters and four-toed statues has there ever been an actor named Matthew Perry. He's not there in 1977. He's not there in 2009. And he wasn't there in 2004 when the Oceanic 815 crashed.

Whoever added the part to Perry's resume was playing a dirty trick on us, Losties. Three island sources have now confirmed what ABC debunked. Our money's on Benjamin Linus. You know how that guy likes to mess with our heads.

-- Maria Elena Fernandez

Photo: Getty Images

'Lost': What lies in the shadow of the statue?

April 9, 2009 |  5:59 am

Deadisdead1091

Good ol' "Lost." Even when they announce a week in advance what the episode will be about -- in this case, lots more information on the Smoke Monster -- they manage to throw us a surprise from left field.  Tonight, we fully expected to see the scoop on the temple, the monster and what happened to Penny, but who could have expected the revelation that Ilana and a few other passengers from the Ajira Airways flight were apparently Others all along (though of the exiled and ticked-off-about-it variety).

The giveaway? Their code with one another: "What lies in the shadow of the statue?" The answer? We don't know for sure yet. Though there are a few options. "Death" is my guess, but depending on the definition of "lies" it could also be "Ben." How cutesy are the Others? Not very. I'm sticking with "Death."

Why "Death"? That has a lot to do with what Ben saw underneath the temple. (Technically the wall surrounding the temple, but let's not get bogged down in details). Finally, after so many years of people asking "What is the Smoke Monster?" we got, if not exactly a definitive answer, then at least as close to a full answer as I think we're going to get. Down there in the Smoke Monster's lair, which looks like an unused set from "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull," Ben learned that: 1) The Smoke Monster sleeps beneath the stone grid and 2) Instructions say that it was a force used by the Egyptian god Anubis to judge the dead on their way to the afterlife.

Presumably that also clears up the question of whom the broken, four-toed statue depicts. It's Anubis' island, and Ben and Locke and even Widmore are merely visitors.

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'Lost': Tying up loose ends

April 2, 2009 |  6:02 am

Sawyer1 After several weeks of spinning around in an increasingly complex time travel story arc, this week "Lost" put the plot in the backseat and gave us some good old-fashioned character drama courtesy of Kate and Sawyer's big puppy dog eyes.

We finally found out what happened to Aaron (he went to grandma) and what Sawyer whispered to Kate before jumping out of the helicopter at the end of last season (something along the lines of "Take care of my daughter") but perhaps most important to "Lost's" eagle-eyed watchdog fans, we learned why the Ben we saw back in Season 2 didn't remember Sayid, the man who shot his younger self in Season 5. It's a double-edged sword for co-creators Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof (who also wrote this episode) -- the fans love them for their attention to detail. But overlook one moment in the mad rush to surprise and shock and god help them.

The time travel talk between Miles and Hurley was one of the episode's high points and if Hurley has frequently spoken the general viewpoint and attitude of the audience, he practically seemed to be reading directly from any number of "Lost"-centric message boards when he confronted Miles with Ben's seeming amnesia surrounding Sayid. "Huh, I didn't think of that," Miles said.

That conversation pointed out just how close to the edge of the narrative chasm the writers are dancing this season. Make too much of a leap or a twist and you risk sending this carefully constructed series off the cliff into incomprehension, loose ends and viewer apathy (just ask those poor slobs over at "Heroes.")

Luckily, we have a major deus  ex machina -- and I'm beginning to suspect he's a real deus, if you know what I mean -- in Richard Alpert. So we learned that Richard was able to use his mumbo jumbo to save Ben's life but simultaneously cause him to forget Sayid and become the scheming weasel we all know and love today. Genius! Thanks, Richard!

Yes, it seems convenient, and a little too much of the dialogue in "What Happened, Happened" felt like it was being explained right at us instead of existing in the make-believe world we've grown obsessed with, but no matter. Nestor Carbonell, who plays Alpert, is a damn compelling actor and the lighting, sinister music and his intense stare sold the moment. Who would ever have guessed that Sawyer and Kate were the two who helped make Ben who he is now.

As for Sawyer, his character's arc has been impressive. We've finally gotten underneath the tough guy exterior and seen the emotional mess he is deep down. Check out the simpering look he gives Kate when asking about his daughter's well-being. A couple more minutes and he would have been sobbing, I guarantee it. Some may bemoan the diminishment of Sawyer's tough-guy swagger, but I say let him bawl. By now we know him and love him, flaws and all. Remember how Locke almost become a weak mess a couple of seasons ago and now he's back to being mysterious and spooky. The old Locke is still there somewhere, I'm sure, but no matter. We accept all aspects.

And speaking of Locke, the ending of the episode was surprising in a way unusual for this season. Instead of some new narrative twist or revelation, we simply got a small confrontation that benefited from the weight of actions set up weeks ago in "The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham." The look of unease and surprise on Ben's face said it all. Whatever happened, this is no longer quite the Ben we grew to hate and mistrust. He's weakened somehow, and Locke has become the stronger one. Can't wait to see what happens with those two next.

I haven't said much about Kate, even though this was her episode. But I have to confess to being largely apathetic toward Kate and her multiple issues. This was her episode in terms of screen time, but the emotional cores existed elsewhere, in Ben and Sawyer and Juliet, whose confrontation with Jack was heartbreaking. But there's something about Kate that just leaves me cold. I suspect Jack and Sawyer would agree.

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: ABC

'Lost': Sayid causes trouble

March 26, 2009 |  1:59 pm

Sayid1

It's strange, considering the time-looping subject matter "Lost" deals with week after week, that each episode seems to speed by much faster than 40-some minutes plus commercials. Is it possible that ABC itself, from the hours of 9 to 10 p.m., exists in a bizarre time warp of its own? And by watching the show at a different time on my DVR, am I actually experiencing it in a parallel pocket time where I'm unable to affect the outcome of what was aired previously? This has nothing to do with tonight's episode, I'm just thinking out loud here. ...

After many weeks of shaking up the traditional format, "Lost" returned to the flashbacks this week in the Sayid-centric episode "He's Our You," and it felt as comforting as chicken soup served by Mom. (Actually chickens were a theme tonight -- from Lil Sayid killing one back in Tikrit to Lil Ben delivering a chicken salad sandwich to older Sayid on the island.) Once upon a time, I grew very weary of the constant glimpses into the past of our main characters. But after moving away from the routine, it was refreshing to get back to basics. And the flashbacks served several good purposes tonight.

On the most basic level, they explained just how Sayid ended up on the Ajira flight back to the island after flatly walking away from Ben and his promises to help the group out. Though does anyone really believe that the bounty hunter bringing Sayid to justice for his golf course assassination in "The Economist" was really working for the family of the deceased? More likely, she was an unwitting accomplice of Ben, manipulated into getting Sayid back to the island against his will.

But more interestingly, we got to see just how Sayid and Ben were essentially different in very surprising ways. Sayid, as demonstrated through the flashback, is a killer through and through. Though his young friend could not bring himself even to kill a chicken, Sayid had no problems. But young Ben was driven to his ruthless, cold-blooded ways by the environment he was brought up in -- with his father's abuse as well as  the betrayal by Sayid, whom he'd come to revere as a "hostile."   Sayid no doubt shot Ben with the best of intentions, but the Ben who was shot by Sayid had not done all the awful things he was killed for. One supposes Sayid could have tried to help the boy, whom he witnessed being abused at the hand of his father, but that wasn't Sayid. A killer kills.

That said, I doubt Ben is dead. Remember what Faraday said: You can't change the outcome of the past. Ben must live on to enact "the Purge" and not even a bullet from Sayid will stop him.

Meanwhile, it seems the Sawyer-Kate-Juliet love triangle is headed for a tragic end. Juliet can see the end coming, even if Sawyer and Kate remain in denial. We all know Sawyer and Kate will hook up and Juliet will be left out in the cold, but is there anyone watching this show still rooting for Kate to get the man? Maybe back in the first or second season, but at this point, I think Kate would do just fine on her own. Or maybe she could shack up with the polar bear. A spinoff!

This week was light on island mythology -- no smoke monster, no four-toed statue, no creepy Christian and no frozen donkey wheel. But what we missed in puzzles and clues was made up for in nice bits of character interaction. Some highlights: Sayid's summation of his well-being to Sawyer: "A 12-year-old Ben Linus brought me a chicken salad sandwich. How do you think I'm doing?" Sayid's drugged predictions of doom to Oldham (the "He" of "He's Our You") and Horace. The tearful Ben confiding in a stoic Sayid. And finally Sayid's cold-blooded slaying (or not) of Ben.

Yes, people will be talking about that moment this week, but I doubt that version of Ben is dead, dead. No way. Not possible. We'll be seeing Lil Ben again. And I bet you next time we see him he'll be very, very angry.

"Lost" book club: The producers have been stingy with their literary plugs this season. Last week, Sawyer was calmly reading a book and contemplating the Sayid problem. Which book? They never showed us the cover. But this week, Lil Ben gave Sayid a book, and we got a good long look at the cover. "A Separate Reality" by trippy metaphysical author Carlos Castaneda. This supposedly nonfiction work is an account of the author's apprenticeship under a Yaqui Indian sorcerer, who used plants such as peyote to see the energy of the universe as it flowed through our reality. Heady stuff for a little squirt like Ben. As I think we've learned by now, it's that visible energy down under the island that's the root of our hero's problems. Will they ever learn to harness it properly?

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: ABC

'Lost': Finally, some answers

March 19, 2009 |  7:43 am

Namaste1 Most weeks "Lost" raises more questions than it answers. Tonight, we got more answers than questions. But not by much -- we still have plenty of questions. What made "Namaste" a great episode was the manner in which it gave us the answers. Instead of having everything spelled out, we got our answers casually, dropped in throughout the episode. So casually, in fact, that those who complain that the show never answers anything could easily continue their gripes, because on "Lost," the answers come only to those willing to pay close attention.

Some of the questions answered:

The identity of Horace and Amy's baby? It's Ethan -- the Other who abducted Claire back in Season 1 and wound up getting killed by Charlie. Which means not all of the Dharmas got killed in the Purge. Makes you wonder who else survived to join the Others....

The "when" of the Ajira plane landing and Locke, Sun, Frank and Ben? It's now. Thirty years since 1977.

How did Ben wind up unconscious when Locke found him? Sun knocked him out.

Why did the Others ask Michael to bring back Jack, Kate, Hurley and Sawyer at the end of Season 2?  And how did they know their names? Because Ben obviously remembers them from his youth. We saw young Ben encounter Sayid (though he thinks he's an Other), he no doubt remembered the rest of the time travelers.

Who was Radzinsky? Kelvin's suicidal partner in the Swan Station was previously known only to us by the bloody stain he left on the ceiling when he blew his brains out. But back in 1977, we learn Radzinsky was a high-strung radio operator who had a hand in designing the station that eventually drove him to suicide. Judging by the annoying few moments we had to spend with him in tonight's episode, I'd say suicide was definitely an improvement for him.

But despite these holes in the story tied up for us, we're still left with some questions and half-formed notions. (Did we expect anything less? It's "Lost," people!)

Just what happened to Faraday? We saw him at the very beginning of this season as the Dharmas were about to uncover the frozen donkey wheel. And Sawyer informed Jack that Faraday wasn't around anymore. So where did Faraday go? We're guessing he's somewhere else in time -- maybe he's back in the present? Naaaaaah, too easy.

What's the connection between Christian and the Smoke Monster? Just as Sun and Frank were approaching Dharmaville, Smokey made an unseen cameo and Christian appeared soon after. A coincidence? Hardly. Recall that Smokey has impersonated the dead before -- he appeared to Mr. Eko as his dead brother just before killing him back in Season 3. But that raises an intriguing possibility. If Christian is actually Smokey in disguise, then Christian in the cabin is Smokey, which means Jacob, the mysterious "man behind the curtain" may, in fact, be the Smoke Monster.

And finally, for you HDTV users, what is the nature of the girl hiding in the shadows behind Sun near the end of her encounter with Christian? Go back and look closely -- just after Christian showed Sun the 1977 class photo of the Dharmas, we see a quick shot of Sun, and there, just over her left shoulder we see what looks like a girl, hiding in the shadows, move her head toward the camera. What do you think? Important clue or glaring production gaffe? My money's on the former. Remember that just before this little incident, we were treated to a VERY blatant shot of the door to the cabin mysteriously blowing open on its own and the smoke/fog/mist swirling inside.

From the previews for next week, it looks like the harmony in Dharma Town won't last too much longer, but will Jack and Sawyer learn to work together again? It certainly didn't take them too long to slip back into their old antagonistic roles. But geez, I'll bet Jack could encounter a resurrected John Locke and still treat him like he's a crazy person. Sawyer appears to have mellowed, but Jack is as testy as ever. He's got to work on that bad attitude.

Meanwhile, I don't foresee any good future for poor Juliet. It's only a matter of time before Sawyer goes back to that home wrecker, Kate. And once that happens, who knows how Juliet will take it? She used to be sinister, then she mellowed. I'm betting the sinister Juliet makes a comeback to do something really evil to Kate. And would she be in the wrong?

We already know a major death is coming soon to "Lost," so we'll know very soon if it's Juliet or Kate. Or ... someone else.

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: ABC