Previously on Lost: ETHAN BAAAAAD.
Commie Sharefest of Cavetown. We pick up with Hurley freaking out that Ethan wasn't on the manifest and Captain Hero Jack remembers that Claire stormed out and Charlie ran after her and he magically puts together that Ethan x (Charlie + Claire) = BAAAAD, even though Ethan could have traveled under a different name or just not appeared on the manifest due to a paperwork error, or, for that matter, might easily be out menacing people whose names do not appear in the opening credits, but the show needs Jack to come to this conclusion, so he does. Everyone panics.
Cut to: Locke and Captain Hero Jack out racing through the jungle to... somewhere. I guess towards the beach, since that's where Claire was headed. Jack starts bellowing "CHARLIE! CLAIRE!" and Locke is like, "SHUT UP, FOOL!" I kind of missed what happened here, but I think Locke says he's going back to Cavetown to round up a posse, and Jack's like, "OMG I AM COMING TOO," and Locke's like, "Hello. Only registered doctor on the island." Jack points out that he is also a registered hero, so Locke gives up and tells him to keep going towards the beach in search of clues. Jack agrees and flails off into the wild. Really, I hope that if I ever decide to do something dastardly, Jack is on my trail.
Operating Room, Jackstralia. This is another Jack flashback episode, in case you haven't heard. My mom didn't catch this initially, but Jack and his father are operating on this girl, and while I don't remember the exact procedure or the problem involved, the girl dies on the table, and Jack's father is like, "Call it, Jack." And Jack keeps trying to resuscitate her while all the nurses are backing away and pretending to be invisible, and Jack's father is like, "CALL IT," and I've seen three reruns of ER in my entire life and even I know that means SHE'S DEAD, JACK. And Jack's all emo and "YOU CALL IT" and so the father does and all the nurses leave and Jack is pouting at his father soulfully.
Cavetown. Kate volunteers to go with Locke, and Locke's like, "Yeah, I thought you would. Savor your first knife from the Creepy O'Scar Collection, baby." Boone decides he wants to go, too, and Snicker Bitch is all like NOOO DUN GO U R MY BROTHER!, and Boone is reasonably confused by this, because I thought they "truly, deeply hated" each other, but I guess it's one of those love-hate
The jungle. Jack is flailing through a meadow like a muppet. I think Jack has problems. Jack goes into another Flashjack, which... not exactly the problem I was thinking of, but okay. Jack and his father are still in the OR (O, R they?) "discussing" the dead girl. Jack insists that his father was drunk and shaky and "incapacitated," and... really, his father seems pretty steady, but we didn't really see him operating, either. Apparently Dad was called in from a three-martini lunch to come operate on this girl, and he's all like, "If you're so fabulous, why'd they call for me?," and Jack's all like, "Because a nurse called me to take over for YOUR DRUNK ASS, POPS," and they glower meaningfully at each other. P.S.: Jack is the surgeon of record on this one.
Commie Posse of Cavetown. Locke, with Kate and Boone in tow, finds Jack, noting that Jack's thrashing around in circles made it pretty easy. Heh.
Back at Cavetown-on-Dead Pool, Mercutio's all like, *grumble grumble 'go south' son of a bitch grumble* and his kid is pontificating on the glory that is Locke, the "mighty hunter." I am serious, I remember Walt actually saying something like, "Mr. Locke, he's a mighty hunter." Hurley: "Where I come from, I was considered a mighty hunter." Of what, the wild Cheeto? Bless.
The jungle. I think this is where Locke and Boone are marking the trail with strips torn from a red shirt, which leads to Boone being like, "Ha! 'Red shirt'! You know, like on Star Trek, where Kirk takes his crew down to some planet and the guy in the red shirt always gets killed," and Locke says something snarky like, "There's a captain who sucks," but I didn't catch the exact phrasing because I was laughing too hard. Meanwhile, Jack is berating himself to Kate because he didn't believe Babymama's claim that someone was trying to hurt her baby. And then Jack just happens to see... one of Charlie's finger-tapes in the grass, or hanging from a branch, or something, and we flash back to Charlie inking various letters onto each finger (this week's episode is brought to you by the word LATE). And the posse is all like, "Did it just fall off or something?," and Locke intones sagely, "No, not idly do the leaves of Driveshaft fall." So clearly Charlie is leaving them a trail. Tally ho!
I think there is a commercial at this point. ABC persistently runs Flight of the Phoenix previews (goofily introduced by Dennis Quaid and Giovanni Ribisi) at the beginning of each break. In the movie itself, Ribisi's hair is bleached Nazi blond and he's stuck with dorkomatic glasses (I guess to show that he's the
The jungle. Kate and Locke start arguing over which way to go, because on one hand, Locke is Prince Humperdincking* that clearly there
The outskirts of El Waltador. Sawyer is getting "the six o'clock news from a six-year-old" (Walt: "I'M TEN"), which is how he finds out that Charlie and the Babymama have been hijacked and that Cavetown posses have been sent after them and that... Sayid is back. The look on Sawyer's face when he finds this out is priceless.
The Locke Lomond-Luxemboone Alliance. Boone reveals that his mom is "the Martha Stewart of weddings." So... she's Martha Stewart? And what does Boone do in her empire? "I RUN A
The Katebabwe-Jackstralia Border. Kate and Jack discuss something. I can't remember what.
Oh, wait! I think they talk about how Kate's father was a big Army and/or Marine guy and she used to track deer with him or something, and that's how she knows how to follow trails. I really wanted her to just be like, "Dude, I saw The Two Towers like everyone else. I know what I'm doing."
Flashjack. Jack is standing in his father's office in his doctor's coat and I have to say, I've never really had a thing for doctors, but Matthew Fox looks pretty good here. Dad has some waiver or legal statement or something that he wants Jack, Captain Hero Surgeon of Record, to sign basically saying that the woman died because, to use the technical expression, "Shit happens." Jack holds out on Dad for a really, really long time. Dad's all like, "This is my life. Look at all the good I've done. I was hard on you because that's how you temper steel. If you don't sign this, I'm going to have to fly to Australia and drink myself to death in an alley," or somesuch shit. Jack is just not saying anything. Dad gets up and squeezes Jack's shoulder. I don't know why, but the gesture comes off as extremely inappropriate. I think it's because the actors do a good job here of showing how false and alien the gesture is on Dad's part, and how unused to it Jack is. Except that I also caught a slightly incestuous whiff off it for no good reason. I don't know. I think the fumes from the Boone-Shannon chemistry are starting to mess with my head. Anyway, Jack is so
The Diplomatic Embassy of Sayidistan, Cavetown. Sayid's attractively sprawled out in his blood and his bandages when--uh-oh!--here comes Sawyer. Sawyer's "fresh out of sweet forgiveness," if I'm quoting that correctly. Sayid is totally screwed. Sawyer finds what looks like either a pair of nail clippers or a very tiny pair of pliers left by some Keebler elves and makes snip-snip gestures. NOOOO! NOT A MANICURE! SAWYER, YOU MONSTER! Sayid tells Sawyer that he did leave the camp because he felt so very, very terrible about what he did to Sawyer (whose lip is still faintly split--nice job, makeup and continuity folks). Sawyer's like, "So, yeah, where were you for a whole week, anyway?" And now Sayid gets to lay the big news on him: "I was held captive by the French woman." Sawyer: "Jigga whaaaat?" So: French woman, still alive, may be other people on the island, Sayid isn't sure what to believe. And then they have makeup sex. What? Don't lie, you know they did.
The beaches of Hurleguay. Walt is kicking Hurley's ass at backgammon. I don't know jackshit about backgammon, but someone who does needs to tell me whether Walt's playing "light or dark," as Locke put it in the pilot. By the way: Walt is seemingly able to roll whatever number he wants. Given that he also had a polar bear in his comic book and got Mercutio to promise to look for Vincent the Yellow Doomrador once the rain stopped (RAIN: *stops*), I find this interesting. Also, he mentions that his dad was the luckiest guy ever. Not Mercutio--his other dad. Silence. Hurley sits there like, "Awkward." Then Walt kicks his ass again, and Hurley decides he has to leave, because he has "a meeting." Heh.
The Locke Lomond-Luxemboone Alliance. I forget exactly what Locke and Boone discuss, but it may or may not have something to do with Locke telling Boone that it's going to rain in one minute ("Did you predict the weather back at the box company?"), so he should turn back and go to camp, but Boone would rather sack up and keep going, so good for him. And then it rains on them.
The Katebabwe-Jackstralia Border. Jack and Kate stumble around in the insta-mud. I think they find another leaf of Driveshaft here, so Jack goes leaping up a muddy hill while Kate's desperately trying to climb up vines and roots and crap, and so Jack's alone when he gets attacked by (DUN DUN DUN!) ETHAN. Ethan, by the way, is really scary. I think he must have taken some ass-kicking-on-film lessons from Cousin Tom, because he basically picks Jack up by the ankle and whacks him back and forth against the rocks like Bam-Bam or something. "IF YOU DON'T STOP FOLLOWING US," says Ethan, "I WILL KILL ONE OF THEM." In reply, Jack bleeds on the mud.
Unconscious Bleeding Flashjack: A nurse points out the dead girl's husband to Jack; he's speaking with Jack's father, who also gives Dead Girl's Husband the Inappropriate Squeeze. Dead Girl's Husband is extremely broken up about it and may sue. About the dead girl, not the squeeze, I mean. Although he might should sue over the squeeze, too.
Kate revives Jack, who may or may not have imagined Ethan, I guess ("You slipped and hit your head!" she says), but Jack says something like "Not again!" or "I'm not losing another one!," and keeps climbing up that hill.
Flashjack. Jack's father is smarming at some kind of legal and/or board meeting that sometimes people die, shit happens, Jack can vouch for him, etc. Basically we watch Jack look guilty for several minutes while the hospital officials question his father and clap him on the back and say, "Yeah, true dat." And then one of the officials makes a passing reference to the fact that the dead girl was in the early stages of pregnancy, and Jack's all like, "I WOULD LIKE TO REVISE MY STATEMENT PLEASE." And he spills everything: His father was drunk, he severed "the
Suddenly, in the present, Jack and Kate stumble upon a blindfolded Charlie hanging from a tree. This is seriously one of the most disturbing things I've seen on TV. It's not the episode of Six Feet Under where [most recent season spoiler] we had to watch David's carjacking for a full, uninterrupted forty minutes, but it packs a pretty nightmarish punch for the amount of time it does run (I think it reminded me of some of the Abu Ghraib imagery, for some reason). Jack runs to Charlie and tries to lift him up and support Charlie's crotch with his face, which... I mean, hey, you're the doctor, man. Kate climbs up the tree and tries to cut the vine he's hanging by but she can't reach it and we spend like three minutes watching her flail at it with Locke's knife (convenient!) while Charlie hangs there limp as a rag. So finally they cut Charlie down and Kate cries and Captain Hero Dr. Jack performs CPR on him for another five minutes. It doesn't work. Charlie just lies there. Then Jack starts whacking Charlie in the chest, which I thought was Jack having a nervous breakdown, but my stepfather told me at this point that this is something they really do in some cases of cardiac arrest. So... okay. It doesn't work. Jack keeps beating Charlie. And now Kate decides that it's time for her to step up in the Losing of the Shit sweepstakes and go for the Long Distance event; she proceeds to stagger around in circles and weep and whimper at Jack to stop and then wheel around again and cry in the arms of a sympathetic palm tree while Captain Hero Jack tenderizes poor Charlie's carcass for approximately twelve minutes. The judges give her an 8.359 and an Emmy nomination. And then Jack sits up in the rain and the violins start in and the camera pulls back and Charlie just lies there and he is dead. Totally dead. Stone cold dead. An ex-Charlie. Joined the rock band invisible. The internets burst into flame and JJ Abrams' inbox crashes under the weight of the death threats. And then Jack gives Charlie three or four more savage punches to the sternum while Kate wails. Seriously, this is what "beating a dead horse" looks like, in case you've ever wondered, except that OMG CHARLIE'S NOT DEAD! CHARLIE IS BREATHING! and the scene swings back from "the ballsiest move in the history of genre television" to "criminally manipulative." Kate and Jack cry and hug and cradle him and smile and hobbit makes three.
And if you listen very carefully, you can hear Charlie gasping, "Shattered... sternum! Internal... bleeding! Ack...!"
Cavetown-on-Dead Pool, night. Kate drapes a blanket over Charlie, who is brooding broodfully by the fire. Charlie has apparently had his death sentence commuted to "hanged by the neck until sexy." Jack swears they'll start looking for Claire again the moment the sun comes back up, but in the meantime, can Charlie remember anything? Anything? And Charlie robots, "No. I remember nothing. NOTHING." Now, the way he says this... I can't tell if either the trauma or the brief lack of oxygen to his brain has made him unable to remember, or if Charlie is afraid to tell what he knows because Ethan has threatened to kill Claire if they try to rescue her or something. Then he adds that they totally just wanted Claire the whole time, that's all they were after. To which I can only say: this is what I have been saying all along. The polar bear gods are still hungry, man, and that baby sauce ain't gonna make itself.
Meanwhile, out in the jungle: Boone decides to turn back, so Locke tosses him his flashlight, which Boone doesn't catch, and it falls on--thunk!--something metal. DUN DUN DUN.
Next on Lost: We don't know, because they're just gonna show reruns for the next couple of weeks.
*Y'all totally came up with the Princess Bride reference in the comments here; I can't take credit for that.
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